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Date: January 10th 1943
Mother & Dad - (Wilhelmina & John Gray)
Hampton Gray


Dear Mother and Dad,

I just received the airmail letter cards dated the 12th of November. You sent two mother sort of continuous and they both got here at the same time. You will see that my address is changed, but don’t worry about it. I am very happy and finding my work more interesting than for some time. You can tell Mr. Currie that he was quite wrong when guessing my whereabouts. I am glad Doug. has been in different times to see you. He is a grand chap and it will do you good to see him. You won’t worry much about Leigh and Ken. They are just too selfish to think that it might be a nice idea. Can you tell me anymore about Pete’s movements. All I know is that he is gone to Halifax and I would like to know what he is doing. Before I forget could you send me some underwear, about six pairs. I am running short and I do not like the kind you get out here. You know what I like Mother, not the Jockey kind but the ones with the nice stripes. – I cannot tell you a thing about what we are doing of course but it is a good life and I feel that we are doing something worthwhile. When I get home I shall have all the more to talk about. On Christmas we are having a party and we each have to buy some other officer a present costing not more than one shilling. The Captain is going to act as Santa Claus so it should be quite fun. It won’t of course be like home but maybe next Christmas I shall be able to have that. What a time we shall have! I hope Phyllis, Ed, and Jane have been able to come down to you for Christmas. It would be nice for everyone. I don’t want to think that you will have had too lonely a time though I can just realize a bit of how you feel. Still we must keep going. It cannot last forever and as you remarked the news lately has been a good deal better. Let’s hope it stays that way. We are allowed on the top decks of these ships to go around with only a pair of shorts on so I am developing quite a good tan. Except that I am a bit fatter than I should be I am really in quite good shape. – The only thing wrong with me at the moment is something called “Prickly heat.” It is caused by sweating a lot I think and comes out as a sort of red rash all over the body. Fortunately it is not very itchy but it is not a pleasant thing to have. We can get two showers (fresh water) a day and we really need them. I have not a very good stock of tropical clothing unfortunately so at the moment I have to bathe to smell sweet. I shall be glad when we get out of the tropics. It is not my idea of the best place to live.

All my love goes with this,
From your son,


[Editor’s note: The envelope’s postmark has been used for dating the letter.]

Original Scans

Original Scans

Page 1 of WWII letter of 1943-01-10 from Lt. Robert Hampton Gray, VC, DSC