August 5, 1918
Camp Funston, Kansas
My Dearest 'Cile,
Will write you a little this evening for the first time in a century it seems. Well sweetheart, I didn't get very much of a move from Riley, after all. But we have been so blooming busy all the time and haven't had an address at all till today, and it is only temporary.
We came over Sunday morning about 175 of us medical bunch and will be here by ourselves I guess for a week or so until 1,000 raw recruits are landed here to learn the game. Funston is a nice camp, but seems to me it is much dirtier place than Riley. About 170,000 soldiers live here though 150,000 is the real capacity. They have been running us most to death trying to find us place to eat and sleep. I think after they get our place fixed up, we will have a real nice place. We are off from the main part of camp about 1/2 mile and there are a good many trees and some grass growing. The wind has been so hot the last 3 days that it burns your face awful. I don't hardly see how the infantry boys hack it here, but they sure do put them through. Well, I didn't get to move with only about 10 from my old Company, but about 3 of us pals are still together. Pretty lucky at that.
They sure do keep us busy now that there are only a few of us here. They won't let us slip away to the "Y" and write letters like I was used to though the Y isn't over 50 feet from our "house." They are organizing the 10th Division at Funston. That consists of 27,600 men, and we are the medical corps to that division, Called the Sanitary Train. When this division is all organized, we all get to sail, though it will likely be sometime before she is organized. I have been down to the main part of Funston one time and it is some place. Shows and stores of all kinds. Just as soon go down there as to go to town.
We took a little hike this afternoon and as we crossed the railroad, a passenger train came along with the rest of our Riley bunch, headed for Camp Custer and Lewis. We were marching at attention but we sure did raise "h," when they put their heads out of the windows and yelled. I would sure have loved to gone along, though they say Funston is the nicest camp of any. ha ha
Well sweetheart, as everything is new and I have only been here two days, I can't write much. But will do better next time I promise. So I will close for now.
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1998-2002, Tom Johnston