Major Robert F. Burns

90th Division, U.S. Army

 

War Letters from Europe

Normandy to Germany

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Letters from France

June 22, 1944
June 29, 1944
June 29, 1944 (2nd)
July 6, 1944
July 17, 1944
August 10, 1944
August 14, 1944
August 25, 1944
September 1, 1944
September 2, 1944
September 3, 1944
September 3, 1944 (2nd)
September 14, 1944
September 16, 1944
September 16, 1944 (2nd)
September 17, 1944
September 28, 1944
October 2, 1944
October 14, 1944
October 22, 1944
November 2, 1944
November 12, 1944
November 24, 1944
December 2, 1944
December 27, 1944

Letters from Luxembourg

January 9, 1945
January 16, 1945
January 20, 1945

Letter from Belgium

February 7, 1945

Letters from Germany

February 9, 1945
February 21, 1945
February 23, 1945
February 26, 1945
April 5, 1945
May 5, 1945

Letters from Czechoslovakia

May 10, 1945
May 16, 1945

Letters from Germany

May 19, 1945
May 20, 1945
May 24, 1945
June 3, 1945
June 22, 1945

Letters from France

June 30, 1945
July 3, 1945

Letters from Germany

July 14, 1945
July 27, 1945
July 30, 1945
August 3, 1945
August 14, 1945

Letters from France

August 26, 1945
August 28, 1945
August 29, 1945

Letters from Germany

September 9, 1945
September 11, 1945
September 13, 1945
September 15, 1945
September 17, 1945
September 23, 1945
September 27, 1945
October 1, 1945
October 9, 1945

Letters from France

October 13, 1945
October 15, 1945
October 22, 1945
November 5, 1945
November 17, 1945
November 17, 1945 (2nd)
November 23, 1945
November 30, 1945
December 17, 1945
December 17, 1945 (2nd)
December 18, 1945
December 26, 1945
January 2, 1946

Letters from Belgium

January 14, 1946
January 15, 1946
January 17, 1946
January 17, 1946 (2nd)

Letters from France

January 21, 1946
January 24, 1946

France

September 3, 1944

Dear Pop,

Your little reminder calendar you once gave me is long since gone, but I seem to remember that you have a birthday coming up about the 10th of the month. I can't send you much other than congratulations. Tell Marn to buy you some smokes out of my bank account.

I am sending you herein a little German souvenir - a key ring I found in a German HQ we took over.

Speaking of HQ, we had a hot time in ours one morning. It was about 9 AM and I was asleep at the time, having been on night duty earlier. Someone shook me and I woke up to find everyone outside shooting and shouting. I jumped up, grabbed my belt and carbine and tore outside to see what was up.

A German armored column was attempting to come through our CP (command post). Sgt. Shirette saw them coming, hopped on his jeep and cut loose with the .50 cal. machine gun mounted there. CP guards, runners, wire men and everyone else around cut loose with all they had. The column halted and tried to get out. Two tanks and a half track lumbered around toward our rear. Some of the others made for the way they had come, attempting to swing wide around our other flank. Germans jumped from the vehicles and ran into the houses. Our communication officer and one other man went from house to house and rounded up 60 of them.

Meanwhile, I went around the back to where the tanks were trying to get by. The men there were busy firing, but at what I couldn't see.

"There's a .50 cal. gun, if someone only could run it," said the man next to me. He pointed to a jeep standing in our motor park which was right behind us. Just at that moment the gunner hopped on the vehicle and cut loose a box of ammunition. Then they moved the jeep around to head off the tanks. A CP guard ran with his "Bazooka" (anti-tank weapon) from the other flank which now was quiet and tore off across the ditch to catch the armor. Several riflemen followed and I, not having seen anything within range of my carbine, moved after them. The jeep with the .50 cal. moved up and started chattering again at the tanks. I heard the dull boom and wham of the bazooka going off. When I arrived one tank was knocked out and the crew gone. The guard fired his last round of bazooka at the other tank and seemed to hit it in the motor but it kept going. (We found it later abandoned.) The half track managed to get by us but ran into some other troops further on and was smeared, but not before it shot up one of our jeeps and captured two of our medics (who later escaped).

Everywhere I went the action was all over and I didn't get a shot out of the deal. But it was quite an awakener. I went back and ate my K ration breakfast with a good deal of relish.

Love,

Bob

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