DCSIMG

A World Away Sustaining Connections

Members of U.S. Air Force 4th Fighter Inceptor Wing wait anxiously as mail is sorted in Korea, 1950.
Members of U.S. Air Force 4th Fighter Inceptor Wing wait anxiously as mail is sorted in Korea, 1950.
Courtesy National Archives
Members of U.S. Air Force 4th Fighter Inceptor Wing wait anxiously as mail is sorted in Korea, 1950.
Group of uniformed women are at mail call.
While serving overseas in Australia in 1943, Army nurses of the 268th Station Hospital receive their first mail from home.
Courtesy National Archives
While serving overseas in Australia in 1943, Army nurses of the 268th Station Hospital receive their first mail from home.
Officer in Tampa, Florida during the Spanish-American War.
Officer in Tampa, Florida during the Spanish-American War.
Courtesy of the U.S. Army Military History Institute
Officer in Tampa, Florida during the Spanish-American War.
Letter from Private John Zimmer to his sister Frances, January, 1919.
Letter from Private John Zimmer to his sister Frances, January, 1919.
Letter from Private John Zimmer to his sister Frances, January, 1919.
A sheet from a multipage letter by Major DuVal.
A sheet from a multipage letter by Major DuVal.
A sheet from a multipage letter by Major DuVal.
Marine writes letter next to boots and helmet.
A Marine writes a letter of condolence to the family of a fallen comrade, 2003.
U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Corporal Kenneth E. Madden III.
A Marine writes a letter of condolence to the family of a fallen comrade, 2003.

Mail is important for deployed personnel and their families. The postal system enables service personnel to receive news from loved ones and stay current with and participate in events in their home town. Care packages provide military men and women with some of the comforts of home. Messages from a service man or woman let those waiting at home share in their experiences and their hopes for the future.


 

“Missing You”

 

"Missing You - Letters from Wartime," about wartime letters, 1861-2010, expresses the essential connection of mail between military personnel and the families and friends left behind.

    Credits: pdf link to transcript    
     

Dear Frances

In 1919, Private John Zimmer wrote to his sister to tell her that he hoped to come home soon. He wrote the letter from a hospital in France using stationery provided by the American Red Cross. Zimmer used the opportunity to thank her for the letters he had received, ask for more correspondence from friends, and express concern about his love life.

Semper Fidelis

Marine Corps Major Reina DuVal sent this letter to a friend while serving in Saudi Arabia during the Persian Gulf War. DuVal expressed her feelings on the war, her desire to come home, and some of the strange experiences of living in the desert. Telling her friend that “we live for mail call,” she used the occasion to express gratitude to her friend for writing.

“I sincerely appreciate that you've taken the time to remember us over here. At times we feel so disconnected from reality, but I must tell you we are all endeared to people like yourself who pray, write &/or remember.”
—Major Reina DuVal to her friend, February 27, 1991



What Happens to Mail Addressed to a Service Man or Woman Who Is Deceased, Missing, Captured, or Hospitalized?

Mail addressed to wounded personnel is forwarded for delivery to the hospital treating the recipient. Letters or parcels mailed to a member of the armed forces who is deceased or missing are held until the next of kin is notified by the Department of Defense. Mail that had not been delivered is returned to the sender. Items that were received are forwarded to the next of kin.

       

  • Previous
  • next