During World War II, my dad, Gilbert Steingart, served as a navy dentist. He wrote over 500 letters to his wife, my mother Eleanor. His duty in the Pacific Theater took him from San Diego to Pearl Harbor, Eniwetok, Ulithi, Leyte Gulf (Philippines), and Buckner Bay (Okinawa).
After my mother's death, Daddy wanted to toss the letters. I convinced him to give them to me instead. The letters are a memoir of a remarkable time. Most of the letters begin with the words "Dearest Eleanor."
Had My "Ears Set Out"
AMERICAN RED CROSS
Thursday 17 February 1944
It's 3:15 and no more patients--ain't
that too bad.A new man reported in
Monday, so a few of us got together and went into town for a couple of drinks
This morning this place was like a
morgue so I went to the barber shop and had my "ears set out."It poured from 10:30 to 11:30 and then
cleared off, so we were able to play some volley ball at noon as usual.
Got a letters from Ethel L. and
Debby.Nothing important from Debby, just
that they had a way home but would ride back with me Sunday.Ethel is upset because "Doc" was
reclassified 1A, but such is life.
Only received one letter from you this
week.You must be slipping or maybe
you're pretty busy, but I'll forgive you.Am going to phone you tonight, so adios my Sweet, with kisses to Linda
The best diddle you ever had,
furnish volunteer aid to the sick and wounded of armies......" and
"To act in matters of voluntary relief and in accord with the military and
naval authorities as a medium of communication between the people of the United
States of America and their Army and Navy......"The Charter of The American National Red
Cross.By Act of Congress January 5,