U.S. ARMY AIR FORCES
MAXWELL FIELD, ALA.
Morning! How are ya? Man oh man what a grind, a test Wednsday [sic], on yesterday, and two tomorrow! Boy am I bent. Wednsday [sic] was Math, I got 95, and am I burned, the last answer was 15,000, it cost me five points because of one hairy zero. Yesterday was A.I., I think I got 92, I don’t know the mark yet. Tomorrow I have the math and A.I. final.
Did I tell you I went up to 38,000’ in the pressure chamber Teusday [sic]? That was an experience. As that terrific height aeroembolism sets in. That’s nitrogen bubbles in the blood. They collect in the joints and cut off circulation producing extreme pain. If it continues long enough the man goes into convulsions and paralysis sometimes sets in. One man is still in the hospital from our squadron.
This doesn’t happen to everyone, the average man will just have small pains in the fingers. That’s all I got. One of the men in my chamber had to be taken out, though: another vomited. Ah yes, great fun.
You ought to see the planes that fly in here. My barracks is next to one of the fields and we see everything come in. B-17’s, B-24’s, P-38’s, A-20’s, the new B-29’s, the works. You’d go crazy if you could see them, I know you love them so.
Speaking of the new B-29, in A.I. at our 17th hour we had a lecture on new airplanes. Gosh mom, wait ‘til we get some of these new planes in action, they’ll make the jerry’s look like birds. The new P-63 with a top speed of over 475 climbs to 15,000 in about 4 minutes!
The B-29 has been flown at 52,000 feet, with a probable service cieling [sic] of 60,000! And the jet-propelled Bell is really something, but that’s all I can say on that subject. It’s restricted information. It’s unbelievable the armament that they’re putting on planes now. That new B-25 five carries a 75 mm cannon, the shell of which is three inches in diameter! That can sink a destroyer with three well placed shots!
Well honey, I’ve got to do some studying. Give my love to all, I love you beyond words, my dear mother.
Your Son, Judd