Letters After R&R

Two Weeks of Heaven

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Two Weeks of Heaven

Standing in our living room, holding the phone to my ear, then hearing Frank’s voice saying he loved me, was surreal. For the first time in six months, I was actually talking to Frank and it felt like it was all a dream.  How had he called me?  Where was he? It took only seconds before Frank answered all of my questions with his next words, “Nancy, I am in California and I am fixing to get on a flight to Houston.  Wanna come and pick me up at the Houston airport?” I was fighting back tears, holding back squealing loudly, and smiling from ear to ear all at one time but I...

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Back to Missing Him

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Back to Missing Him

Our two weeks together had come to an end and Frank had returned to Vietnam. There is really no way to explain the feeling of having had Frank home for two weeks, having to tell him goodbye again, then knowing it would be six months before seeing him, talking to him, and holding him in my arms again.  The best words I have to explain this feeling would be,  “Feeling like your heart had been torn in half”. Our love for each other had grown stronger with every day we were apart the first six months and we knew that we were connected in more than letters.  Our hearts and souls had...

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Where Are His Letters?

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Where Are His Letters?

It was hard to keep my mind on my work after Frank left to go back to Vietnam but I knew each day that passed was one less day he had left in Vietnam and the Army. We had now gone past the halfway mark in Frank’s days left in Vietnam which was the main thing on our minds. Frank was right when he said that it would be hard for him to come home then leave again to go back to Vietnam.  Our communication through letters was all that we had and when that communication was disrupted, we would both get very upset. I have responded to the following letters with what I recall that I wrote to...

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Padlock and Key

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Padlock and Key

Letters between Frank and I were finally arriving but at a much slower pace.  Some of our letters were taking over ten days to reach us and out of order.  This made it hard for us to communicate but we were both trying to remain calm until we figure it all out. The greatest thing for me was knowing that Frank was alright, even if he was a little upset with me for writing every day and asking him why he was not writing.  Actually, he affirmed to me that his friends would write to me if he was hurt.  Frank’s buddies all knew how much we loved each other. Frank was thinking deeply in his...

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Disposition Form Letter

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Disposition Form Letter

I was very worried about Frank and knew his last letter to me was so out of character for him.  Frank seemed to have lost all of his inward fight to depression.  I prayed that God would touch Frank with His loving hands, pull him out of the depths of depression and mend his body. The next letter Frank typed on a Disposition Form.  It shows his resilience and God’s hand in answering my prayers.  I will try to put it in here as much like the original as I can but I do not know how to do form letters on the website.   This letter was typed so I will not italicize it. DISPOSITION FORM...

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Man’s Love Not A Weakness

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Man’s Love Not A Weakness

I did not receive a letter from Frank for four days and was really worried about him.  In his last letter, Frank had told me that he would be requesting a sick call to see about getting something done for his severe hemorrhoids.  He was not sure what could be done or when.  All I could do was pray for him and wait to hear from him in a letter. Of course, Frank and I knew that he would not be a priority at the hospital in Phu Bai, Vietnam.  Phu Bai had a hospital called the 85th Evacuation hospital but it was for soldiers wounded in the field, evacuated by helicopter, stabilized, and sent to...

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Guard Duty & Thoughts on War

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Guard Duty & Thoughts on War

Our letters were arriving from each other in the time frame that Frank and I had become accustomed to.  Thank God, the Doctors had managed to get Frank back to being a healthy soldier and he had been on an R&R which game him time to heal and relax a little. Finally, we were coming to the end of September 1971.  We were both doing the best we could to make the days go by faster and praying that Frank would get an early drop to be home for Christmas. The next letter I got from Frank caused me to worry. September 27, 1971 Dear Nancy, Hello, my Darling.  How’s the most precious thing...

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My Poem to My Wife, Nancy

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My Poem to My Wife, Nancy

We had a little disappointment when Frank’s name was not on the list for an early drop, but we knew that each day that passed would still get us closer to being together again.  Also, we knew that no matter how many days we had left of separation, nothing could change the deep love we had for each other. Frank had turned twenty-two years old and spent his birthday in a guard tower overlooking the A Shau Valley.  The devastation of the valley that Frank saw looking down from that tower brought out deep thoughts about the Vietnam War and war in general, which he shared with me in a...

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Frank Explains Love

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Frank Explains Love

The poem Frank had written for me made me cry as I read it over and over. I put the poem and his letter back into the envelope, I walked to the cedar chest at the end of our bed then placed the letter into a white box which was inside it. After shutting the lid on the cedar chest, I set propped up with some pillows on our bed then wrote him a letter. This white box inside the cedar chest which held all of the letters I had received from Frank while he was in Vietnam in 1971 would forty-seven years later be opened by me again only after it was revealed in a dream for me to look inside this...

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Dearest Fancy

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Dearest Fancy

Frank was really worried about our future in his last letter. Even though he was getting upset and depressed, after a few days of thinking deeply, I knew Frank would come back with the strength that was in him, realize how much I loved him, how proud I was of him, and together as a team, we would work out the future. The next letter proves how resilient Frank was. October 17, 1971 Dear Nancy, Dearest Francy, huh?  Well, I’m in a fancy mood tonight.  Are you over the shock yet?  Yep, old grouchy nasty me is in a fairly decent mood.  No, I’m not feeling sorry for myself and...

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Wife of a Shorty

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Wife of a Shorty

Frank was coming home, not in eighty-three days, but in thirty-three. After receiving the letter telling me of Frank getting a drop of fifty days, I called everybody to tell them that he would be coming home soon. Excitement and happiness totally overwhelmed me. I received a letter from Frank the next day and he was so overwhelmed, happy, and excited too. October 26, 1971 Dearest Nancy, I love you!  You had better get your stuff together woman.  Big daddy will be there most rickety tick!  That’s right.  That letter you got yesterday was no lie.  We have 32 days left in this _ _ _ _ _ _...

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Last Days Are Scary

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Last Days Are Scary

Frank was experiencing lots of things in his final days in Vietnam.  He was experiencing recurring dreams of us together again nearly every night. My every thought was about Frank.  He was constantly on my mind and I could not wait to see him, hold him, and tell him how much I loved him.  My dreams were all about him. Of course, the Army was wanting him to re-up, but they did not have a chance of talking him into re-enlisting because four years in the Army had been quite enough for Frank and me.  We wanted no more separations from each other. Frank sent me brochures that were normally given...

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Getting Closer to You

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Getting Closer to You

The final days apart were passing for Frank and me, but each day seemed to go too slowly. We were so ready and anxious to be together again then start our new adventure in life.  Frank and I didn’t care what we had to do to survive our future, we just wanted to do it holding each other’s hand and looking into each other’s eyes. Frank had asked me not to write to him after November 17th because he would have already left Phu Bai for Da Nang and he would not receive letters from me. It was so hard to break the habit of writing to him every day, but it helped that I was still...

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A Message in a Letter

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A Message in a Letter

Frank’s next letter has a beautiful message and it is very special to me. In late January of 2015, I said a prayer asking God for a new purpose for me.  I was getting older and needed to have something to do for Him.  At that time had been a widow for eighteen years and retired for six years. That night Frank came to me in a dream and told me, “Nancy, look in the cedar chest”. For some reason, I immediately woke up.  Lying there in the darkness, I tried to figure out what Frank’s words had meant.  I have a cedar chest in my house but know everything that is inside...

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Leaving the Army Behind Us

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Leaving the Army Behind Us

Frank processed out of Fort Lewis in Washington state then called me on the telephone.  After we talked, he got on an airplane which flew him to Houston Intercontinental Airport. After talking with Frank then hanging up the telephone, I could not quit smiling.  We were actually out of the Army.  I was no longer a soldier’s wife and there would be no more war and separation.  I was now Frank’s wife for the first time without the Army hovering over us. It is a strange feeling to go from the emotions of terrible fear and worry to those of excitement and happiness.  I was so thankful...

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Deciding Our Future

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Deciding Our Future

Upon waking the next morning, I reached behind me for Frank, but he was not there. I felt a deep panic inside me as my eyes searched the room for Frank. Had this all been some dream and he was not home yet? Jumping out of bed, I grabbed my robe, and put it on then I could smell the aroma of bacon cooking.  Frank was not only home but in our kitchen cooking bacon. I happy-danced down the hall to the kitchen, and when I entered the room, Frank said, “Good Morning, wife.  How do you want your eggs?” With a smile as big as Texas on my face, I answered, “Over easy with lots of...

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