Charles F. Bruns lived in the East Central Illinois town of Champaign. A local athlete, ‘Chick’ joined the Army in 1941. In October of 1942 he was sent to the European Theater. During his tour he was able to keep is daily thoughts in a journal that is presented here. Additionally, photos, letters written to home, news paper articles, and historic references will be shared.

Chick Bruns

July 7, 1945 – Saturday

A4P111-2-600Up at three and were on our way at 5 o’clock. We got to our zone of occupation at about 1 pm. The name of the town is Bad Wildungen. It’s a pretty place but there are too many soldiers for the size of the city. We moved into a big hotel. I was large enough for the whole company. I have a nice room for myself and my men. We cleaned up the supply and in the evening went down to the red cross for coffee and doughnuts.

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July 6, 1945 – Friday

A4P100-6-600Didn’t go to bed all night as we had to get up at 3 o’clock any way. Lore and I talked till time to go. Poor kid cried and cried and I didn’t feel so good myself. I really got to know her well. She treated me like a king, always doing something for me. She hung onto me till the trucks started to leave and I had to run catch my truck. We left at 4 o’clock. We were on the road all day. It’s a good thing Lore fixed me something to eat on the way as I got hungry. We stopped at night at Mannheim, Germany. It was raining and we had to pitch pup tents. It flooded our tent out so we moved into an apartment house. We only got to sleep 3 hours as we had to get up at 3 o’clock again.

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July 5, 1945 – Thursday

A4P96-9-600Well, we had just about everything packed up. I have been pretty blue all day. In the afternoon I went over to say good-bye to Fannie and Charlie. They were nice people. I went over to Lore’s early and ate. Then we went for a walk.

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July 4, 1945 – Wednesday

A4P104-1-600The company had to fall out today in a pouring down rain to receive the Presidential Citation for our work at Colmar. The parade was called off as it was raining too hard. We loaded up part of our supplies today. Wrote a letter and went over to Lore’s house.

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July 3, 1945 – Tuesday

A4P104-3-600We are going to move the 6th day of July. Boy, am I going to hate to leave, but we had to leave some time. These people have treated me wonderful. I packed a couple of guns up and sent them home. Wrote a letter and went over to Lore’s . Poor Lore cried most of the night when I told her that I was leaving. Her Grandmother and her mother cried also. God they surely make it tough on me.

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July 2, 1945 – Monday

A4P95-3-600We’re not going to the 103rd now as the 45th Div. is changing over. I’m glad of that. Not much to do today. Went out tonight as usual.

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Letter Home – July 1, 1945

19450701a-Lscan-600Dear Mother & Dad;

Not much to write about but I had some negatives to send so I thought I would drop you a line. I dreamed of coming home last night, but then I had to wake up and find myself in Salzburg.

Went on a picnic today. We really had a lot of fund to. Boy I wish you could see the scenery here mother it’s really beautiful. The only thing I hated about this country is that it rains all the time.

We haven’t been able to play any of our ball games because it has been raining. Are old ball team is starting to break up as the old men are going home.

19450701b-Lscan-600Had a letter from Snook today. Seems as tho he is going to be stuck for a while. Oh well it’s better to be over here than going to the south Pacific.

Oh yes our division receive the presidential citation for our work at Colmar. Anzio was worse than anything we have ever been through, and we never received a thing for it. That’s the way the army goes tho.

Guess this is all for now so I’ll say good-bye. Here is some pictures for my books. Oh yes. Here’s what I look like now so don’t get too excited as you will find out I have changed quite a bit since I left home. By By

Your Son

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July 1, 1945 – Sunday

A4P104-5-600Lore and I went on a picnic today. The first part of the day was beautiful but then it clouded up and got cold. When we got home her mother had a big steak and potatoes waiting for us. I went home early and went to bed.

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Letter Home – June 30, 1945

19450630a-Lscan-600Dear Mother & Dad;

Well now we are going to stay with the division until we get sent home. If they keep on the way they are we never will get home. But one thing you can be thankful for, and that’s that I’m not going to the Pacific. I’ll be home some day, but I just don’t know when. Just keep your fingers crossed.

The more I stay here, the more a im falling in love with my girl so I hope we move soon. I know it would break your heart if I brought her home so I won’t. I just sat back and marvel at her. Gosh ma’am I hope I find one in the states like her and if I don’t I know I’m coming back 19450630b-Lscan-600for her. But I’ll talk to you first. You can’t put things into a letter that you want to say. I know you would like her, but she can’t speak any English, and that’s another reason why I won’t bring her home. She has really won my hard though.

It has been raining quite a bit here lately. Last week it was beautiful, now this week it has rained every day. It surely put a stop to 19450630c-Lscan-600us playing ball. I’m losing all of my help tomorrow as they are going home by plane. One of the Fellows in as Tony Pryz brother Joe.

I have really become a lover of flowers. We have plenty of flowers in our front yard and I always have a large bouquet on my desk all the time.

Well I guess this is about all for now so I’ll bring this to a close. What do you think of my stationary pretty nice eh.

Goodbye to you both and I’ll be home some day. Don’t worry, and say hello to everyone for me as im not writing any letters lately.

All My Love
Your Son

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June 30, 1945 – Saturday

A4P103-5-600Had to turn in excess clothing today. All the fellows left this morning and it surely left an empty feeling in my stomach. Felt pretty blue all day. Went over to Lore’s and played cards.

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