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

August 10, 1945 – Friday

A4P113-5-600Today is Gee’s birthday and I am not home as she wanted me to be. There’s not much doing this morning. Just lay around on your bunk and sweat out leaving. I hope we go soon. Went to the PX and then home to bed.

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August 9, 1945 – Thursday

A4P114-3-600They got us up at 4:30 am this morning and said we were a half hour late already for the plane. We checked out and took off for the airport. The plane was waiting and we went right aboard. Took off at 7 am headed for the the Azones. We landed at the Island of Santa Maria. We were on C 54 plane this time. They told us we would be here about 2 days. We ate chow and fixed up our cots. Went down to the P.X. and then went to a V.O.S. show. They have everything they want on this Island. The meals are wonderful. The bread was just like cake. I am used to scraping the mold off of the bread before I eat it. Walked around in the evening. Went to the beer garden and came home to bed.

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August 8, 1945 – Wednesday

A4P107-5-600We were up at 2:30 and it was raining a little. Went over and got a cup of coffee. Turned in our cots and blankets. Drew our barracks bag and went out to wait for the trucks to come pick us up and take us to the airport. Boy, did it ever pour down rain. I just got soaking wet. Thr trucks came about 4:30 and we loaded on. It rained on us most of the way to the airport. We got to the airport at about 6:30. The air crew helped us put on our MaeWest and parachute harness. The first plane took off at 7 o’clock and as we were in plane 16, we didn’t leave till 7:50 am. We loaded in the plane at 7:30 and taxied out to the runway. We are in a new Fortress of which had only been on about 35 combat missions. We traveled at 6 and 8 thousand feet and it was smooth as could be. We passed over the Rock of Gibralter and also over the beach of Fedela where we landed 34 months ago today. We landed in -Casablanca at 1:30 pm. They took us to our area where we drew our blankets, ate and got a little sleep. We went up to the P.X. in the evening and then to a show. Men are leaving all the time here.

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August 7, 1945 – Tuesday

A4P112-5-600We had to go through our processing this morning. First a Physical, then checking and the weighing of our luggage. Then a speech. Next we got our money back and then I went over to take a shower. I didn’t go to the show in the evening. I went to bed as we had to be up at 2:30 am.

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August 6, 1945 – Monday

A4P114-4-600Went over this morning and turned in our money to be exchanged to American money. Played cards the rest of the day and went to a U.S.O. show in the evening.

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August 5, 1945 – Sunday

A4P114-2-600Went to mass at 8 o’clock this morning. Came back played some cards till dinner. Went over and got a couple of cokes in the afternoon. Played some more cards. Went to a movie in the evening.

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August 4, 1945 – Saturday

A4P107-2-600Slept all morning. Shaved and went out to take a sun bath. Took a shower, ate chow. Went to the Red Cross. Got a beer and went to the show.

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August 3, 1945 – Friday

A4P113-6-600Slept all morning and after chow we sweated out the coke line. Played cards, ate chow and sweated out the beer line. Went to a USO show that was real good. It was an all girls orchestra. The show after wards was good too so it helped make up for last nights deal.

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August 2, 1945 – Thursday

A4P113-1-600We arrived at Marseilles at 3:30 am this morning. Loaded onto trucks and went out to the staging area. We were told that we would be here from 5 to 7 days. We drew our blankets and went to bed. Was up at 7 and ate breakfast. Then went back to bed till dinner time. After dinner we sweated out the P.X. line. Then sweated out the coke line. Then the chow line. Then the coke line, then the beer line. Then went to a stage show that was no good and a show that wasn’t much better. That’s all for today.

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August 1, 1945 – Wednesday

SONY DSCI slept out on the rear end of the coach all night. It was pretty cold but I at least got a little sleep. We were to get at Marseilles this morning, but at the rate we are traveling it will be tomorrow morning. We played some more cards to pass the time away.

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