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UNITED STATES ARMY AIR FORCES
What an exciting weekend I had. I’ve seen some dead towns, but this is the deadest.
Tom and I got an overnight pass, and got a room in the Colquitt Hotel, the only half decent one in town, and it looked like the Naomi. We went to the movies Saturday night, saw “My Pal Wolf,” was pretty good, and went again Sunday. That’s all there is to do in this town, it sure is pitiful, you can’t even get beer. Sunday we saw “The Doughgirls,” it was very funny. Did you see it?
I’ve got nine hours now, and get my first check tomorrow with my instructor, the instructions give you your checks here because most of our work is solo.
What they demand of you here is quite different from basic. Everything is Maximum Performance, getting the most altitude, airspeed or position out of every maneuver that we do. When they saw [sic] glide at 100, they mean 100, not 94 or 101. Everything has to be precise, a margin of 20 feet on altitude is considered poor. We really have to be on the ball.
I get 12 hours of day cross countries, and six of night cross countries, that’s something I never had before, they ought to be fun. I also have a X-C at 18,000’, and one at 200! A legal buzz job!
In the acrobatics line, we get combat team, where four ships pretend mock battle, two against two, and try to knock each other down, or rather get in position to place a shot. Then on my instrument course I take up radio navigation by beams and Radio Compass, it’s very interesting, and when I graduate I’ll get an instrument rating that will allow me to fly in actual bad weather.
I’ll be flying G’s until I graduate, but that’s O.K. with me, a few hours of this type [of] flying proves to you that you’ve got a hell of a lot to learn.
We’re still pilots if they make us Co-Pilots or Engineers, we still do plenty of flying. And this Engineer deal doesn’t look too bad, for after the war. You train for six months after graduation, you must learn a lot more than how to pull up wheels or lower flaps, they turn you out an Aeronautical Engineer and it’s a very important job, although I’d rather get pursuit.
Well honey, I’ve got to eat now, it’s almost 8:30.
I love you Mom, and miss you terribly. I’m looking forward so very much to seeing you in March, I’m so glad you can come down, angel.
Give my love to Bob & Nan, and all my love to you sweetheart.
I love you—
Your devoted Son