LT Bill Porter, June 8, 1941
A young man’s letter home gives us a rare look at the Philippines before the Japanese invasion.
Walter Hines, author of Aggies of the Pacific War, shares a series of letters written by LT Bill Porter from New Mexico, and one of the Bataan Death March survivors. In his book, Hines states:
Among the many [New Mexico A&M] Aggies frequenting the Army-Navy Club was Lieutenant Bill Porter, newly commissioned ROTC officer and fresh off the family farm in the Mesilla Valley. Assigned by the Scouts to the 91st Infantry Division, he was thrown into the frantic effort to train the green Filipino troops in modern warfare. Porter wrote to his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Asa Porter, on June 8, 1941.
At last I have an opportunity to write … . I hope you got my first letter and amateur wire. The wire costs only 20 centavos (10 cents). You can send me 30 words for a dime if you can locate an amateur…
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