June 24, 1943
Leonard Moody, Dexter Knight, Waldon (Custer) Durrance, DAN DECHMAN and Jimmie Crews went to Blanding this week, all being accepted into the army except Knight and Durrance who chose the Marines.
July 8, 1943
DAN DECHMAN, Leonard Moody of Bunnell and Jimmy Crews of Oak Hill left here today for active duty with the army at Camp Blanding. Dexter Knight and Waldon (Custer) Durrance left also for active duty with the Marines at Parris Island, S. C.
July 22, 1943
Recently DAN DECHMAN, Jimmy Crews and Leonard Moody went to Blanding for active duty. Today, we learned from Dan's father than Dan has been sent to Aberdeen, Maryland proving grounds. Dan, before entering the army was working as an inspector in an ordnance plant. Jimmy Crews was shipped out of Blanding but we don't know his destination. Leonard Moody is still there but says in each letter he writes home he hopes, he gets shipped immediately.
July 29, 1943
Mrs. C. H. Cowart, sister of Bob Davidson, tells us that Bob has been sent to Aberdeen Proving Grounds, Maryland. DAN DECHMAN. is there also.
August 12, 1943
Had a post card from DAN DECHMAN who is at Aberdeen Proving Grounds in Maryland. Said he was getting along fine and "doing a lot or marching.”
September 2, 1943
A letter from DAN DECHMAN who is at Aberdeen Proving grounds, Maryland. Said he has just finished basic and to show how he finished he sent along a cartoon revealing the state one is in when the finish is reached. He is now in "technical as a small arms student for small arms maintenance x x and I'm doing my durndest to qualify as an expert so I can obtain extra school." Hope you make it Dan.
October 28, 1943
Pvt. DAN W. DECHMAN writes to change his address slightly at Aberdeen Proving grounds. Md., saying this will be it in the future “or until I ship out. Will notify you when and where.” He is an officer in training there.
December 16, 1943
It sure is swell for so many of you fellows to remember us with Christmas greetings from "all over." We received just this week beautifully executed V- Mail Christmas greetings from S/Sgt. Alfred Tucker in England and from Raymond Smith with the Seabees in the Southwest Pacific. In addition, Pfc. Owen O. Thomas sends us a nice one inscribed "Greetings to you up yonder from Down Under." Also DAN DECHMAN at Aberdeen Proving Grounds, Md., AMM2/C Joe Tanner at Kingsville, Texas; Russell Thompson, coast guardsman, at West Palm Beach; Sgt. and Mrs. Andrew Thompson in California; Seabee Herbert Anderson (also down in the Southwest Pacific); Victor Cyzycki who is an air student at Amherst, Mass. Also one from a guy we haven't heard from in a long time - Dell Bradberry, in the army and at Vallejo. Thanks a million, fellows!
March 2, 1944
From DAN DECHMAN, the following:
"Dear Fuller and Eula and Friends: They have finally given me a permanent address so I am now where I can receive a paper if you will send it. Am located in England, somewhere, and today we are having familiar Florida weather - a case of California dew. As you see by the address, I am one of the Cold Patch boys now instead of a gunsmith. So, I am helping keep them rolling over here. Doing a fine job of repairing and rebuilding the rubber - they don't waste any of it. We are living in Nissen Huts with a concrete block floor and they are very comfortable except you can't warm the floor. The only kick of I have about the food is the powdered eggs, which are unappetizing. You can hardly choke them down - Dan Dechman."
April 27, 1944
Good old DAN DECHMAN takes time out to write us: "Have been receiving the paper for some rime now and it surely is welcome As you can see, have been transferred to another company but am still on the same post. Everything here is really swell, plenty to eat and plenty of work going
on with plenty of work to do; working seven days a week and 26 hours a day on this post - and with spring fever in the air we can't seem to get enough sleep - but suppose we will catch up some day. Wrote for a ballot, so please mark in your paper the Democratic Presidential electors so I can vote right"
(Well, Dan, we are publishing the names of those electors and also those pledged to Harry Byrd of Virginia so you can take your choice. We hope you get that ballot on time and get it back here on time regardless of the consequences)
June 15, 1944
From Pvt. DAN W. DECHMAN somewhere in England, the following: "Have been receiving the paper very regularly and surely am glad to get it because it gives a lot of news about the boys that are off (in service). Do wish I could get the APO's of the boys over here. May get a chance to see some of them. As you will note, I am now in a different company; doing dry ground farming - driving a shop tractor with supplies of all kinds for our company which is a parts company in an automotive maintenance battalion.
Every thing is fine here but we still have our stoves going as long as possible as it is still rather cool over here. In fact, some of the boys are still in their 'long johns' - especially Florida boys with outside work like mine. I am in and out of the shop all of the time."
(Yeah, Dan, our remembrance of a lot of things 26 years ago are rather hazy but we certainly remember vividly the weather up and down the channel. Sometimes we think the weather is what makes the British Tommy so tough)
November 28, 1944
Well, Christmas has come and "went," and now 1945 is just around the corner for all of us. Let us hope all of us will be able to celebrate Christmas of 1945 together once again.
The editor of this column feels today about like "Father Time" looks, acknowledges with appreciation greeting cards from more of you fellows scattered around the world.
Other cards received included those from .....Pfc. DAN DECHMAN still in England .....
February 22, 1945
Here's a letter from Cpl. DAN W. DECHMAN. We haven’t had a letter from him for several months. When last heard from he was in England, but he now is in Paris. Dan says:
"Our outfit finally came over here to speed along the war and it seems to be trying to get over before we can get going strong, but they always can use plenty of supplies and, as that is our job, we are throwing them out regularly.
Have enjoyed The Tribune and it just about got to the election before I left England. However the hometown news and the news of the other soldiers is what I really enjoy.
Just before leaving England we had plenty of snow and after arriving on this side we had a couple more inches before it began warming up. It has been drizzling off and on for a couple of days and all the snow and ices are completely gone." (Glad to hear from you, Dan. That drizzle, if we remember correctly, will continue at least until April. Just in case it gets too dreary promenade the 7 and 800 blocks of Rue Italiane and have one on me.)
April 5, 1945
Now we turn to the other side of the world for a letter from T /5 DAN W. DECHMAN. His letter dated March 21, is from Paris, where he is stationed. He writes:
"After so long a time I take time out to write again.
As you see by the change of address I moved as well as switching companies, and got a raise in the process.
Due to circumstances, I can't reveal the nature of my job at present, but am doing OK and riding around here a bit.
Paris is as beautiful as they say it is. They have beautiful women here - and how! Saw the Follies last week and that is really something."
October 11, 1945
And a V-mail from T-5 DAN W. DECHMAN. He says:
“October 3, 1945.
Am finally on the old grind of trying to get home. Left Paris September 15th on my way and after wasting a couple of weeks am now at a marshaling area close to Le Havre and doing nothing but catching up on my bunk fatigue which is my favorite past time here.
Here's hoping I get to see you soon.”
November 1, 1945
Discharged from the armed services this week....... DANIEL W. DECHMAN