This amazing piece of history was submitted recently and I’d like to share it. It is a letter postmarked February 26, 1945. It is from Purple Heart recipient Pfc. Robert D. Liming of the US Marine Corps as he served in Iwo Jima. Here’s what he wrote:
Dear Mother and All:
I’ll drop a line this morning as we have a little time.
I’m on Iwo Jima Island and so far O.K. Mother I don’t want you to worry but the going is pretty rough. Guam was nothing to compare with this rock. We have to fight for every inch.
I’ll write a long letter later but right now we haven’t time. Albert is here also but I’ve never got to see him. I only pray he’s well.
I’m pretty nervous but other than that fine in every way. The Japs are throwing lots of rockets, mortars and artillery at us. They are sure dug in good.
Well Mother there’s not much more to say. I’ll get to see Albert later on I suppose.
Tell them all hello for me and don’t worry. I’ll write again as soon as possible.
With all my love
Pfc. Robt. D. Liming USMC
I have another letter he wrote home talking more in depth about how it felt to be in the middle of bombing during WWII. Sadly, I also have a Western Union telegram stating that Pfc. Robert D. Liming was killed in action on March 4, 1945, just days after he wrote this letter home.
A couple of people have asked me for a press release that describes the Last Letters Project so they can post it in their break rooms at work, or give to their community association newsletters. To make it easy, I’m posting a link to the press release here. If you know of anyone who might want to put this story into their newsletters, please feel free to download it and send it to them. Here’s the link:
Thanks for your help in getting the word out.
Thank you to the Arizona Republic for doing a write up about our project in this week’s paper. If you missed it, here’s a link:
Arizona Republic: Gilbert Woman In Search Of ‘Goodbye Letters’ For Book
This has generated several letters and ideas that others have shared. It’s amazing how many good ideas come from people when you bother to ask. I will be posting some of the letters here once I have all the permissions given.
There have been questions from others about why we are limiting our letters to only children to their parents–WE’RE NOT!!!
I know, I know…our logo says that, but avid followers of this project know that we are being open minded. We have contacted hospice organizations and have sent letters out to community newsletters. Here’s a growing list of “Last Goodbyes” we’ve thought would be good:
- Military families overseas (we pray for the best, but never know the outcome of serving our country)
- Hospice patients/care givers
- Big Brothers/Big Sisters (the little bros/sis as they transition out of the relationship)
- Make-A-Wish, wish kids
If you can think of any other groupings, please let us know! We need all the help we can get!
Sigh. This project needs a jump start. And you can help! I’ve thought of five (easy) ways you can help us get the word out about needing some letter contributions. Let me restate that–we need lots and lots of letter contributions! Here are my ideas (if you have more, please share!)
1. Ask five friends to “like” us on Facebook (saying ‘pretty please’ might help)
2. Ask me for a copy of our first press release and then personally send it to a connection you may have at a community newsletter, to another blogger, or even someone at 60 Minutes!
3. Send in a letter of your own
4. Visit our website/blog and post a reply to this or another post
5. Say a prayer for our success!