December 31, 1968.  Fort Bragg, North Carolina.

Hi Beautiful!  (hic!)

Happy New Year, Reet.  I’ve made my resolutions: 1 – to marry the girl I love, 2 – to love her forever and ever with all my heart.  How’s that?  Now there’s two that I know I’ll never break!

I don’t know what I’m going to do tonight to celebrate.  I may splurge and have a couple of beers tonight.  Can’t really afford it, but – I don’t figure on getting too polluted unless there’s some free booze around.

No, that soap wasn’t any kind of a hint.  I just figured you might like some of that smelly stuff.  And I figured I could help you use it when I’m home, right?

So how did that night out at our place go?  Hope you and your folks had a good time.  Tell me all about it, okay?

So you got a new car, huh?  Good enough!  Did your dad trade the Chrysler in or keep that too?  And your folks Christmas bonuses couldn’t have come at a better time, could they?  I really believe your prayers are being answered, and I hope they always will be.

You know something Reet?  Ever since I started dating mom has tried to impress on me the fact that the girls I really get interested in should have a good religious background.  And that of all the girls I’ve ever known, you have the strongest and most sincere beliefs of all.  And I’m glad.  I think that can be a very important part of our life together, and I love you all the more for it.

Sounds like you’ve got all the snow you need for this winter.  Sure hope it isn’t like that for our wedding.  Could have a very small wedding if it is.

I’m sorry to hear about your grandfather.  Hope he’s out and feeling well enough to be at our wedding.

I’ll finish this tomorrow Honey.  Till then – happy New Year! (‘69!) Love you!

Back again.  It’s nearly 1 o’clock New Year’s Day.  I just got out of bed an hour ago.  Not because I was tired but because it was too cold to get out.  Our furnace broke down last night.  I’m wearing a coat while I write this, but my fingers are so cold they’re stiff.  Great way to start the year.

On top of everything else I get chased out of bed at 4:00 a.m. to answer a call from some silly broad in South Dakota.  But I didn’t mind a bit.  I’m glad you called, Reet.  Sounded like a real wild party too.  Hope you didn’t end up sick.  I’ll bet you have a hell of hangover this morning, don’t you?

Last night and went to the show in town.  I figured that would be cheaper than drinking all night.  Afterwards another dude and I went to the club and had a couple drinks, but it was so crowded we didn’t stay long.  So we were back at the barracks by 11:00 and helped finish off a couple bottles here, then went to bed about one.  It was the dullest New Year I’ve had in years.  But I only spent three bucks, which I thought was pretty good.

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about your coming out here after we’re married.  In fact I lay in bed for two hours after your call last night thinking about it.  Even if the problem of a car is solved now that you have the Chrysler, that still doesn’t solve them all.  One thing – we have to haul all our household stuff out here (meaning wedding gifts we can use) and then worry about getting you and them back.  I don’t think you should drive all the way back alone, and if you flew we’d still have the problem of the car and getting it back.  But I’d love to have you out here with me.  Your schooling is another thing to think about though.  And I’m still thinking.

Only 17 more days after today and I’ll be home!  Now that it’s getting so close time is starting to drag out here.  I think about it all the time, and I can’t wait to hold you in my arms again.  It’s been an awful long time.  I love you, Reet.

I’m going to close now and watch the Sugar Bowl.  But I’ll be thinking about you.  17 days!  I love you!