William "Penn" Campbell
A moment in time during World War II, when a mother wants some answers.
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A Mother's Story
May 4, 1945 | Leighton, Al
Mrs William M Campbell was like all other mothers during War, she worried, worked and worried some more. Her only son William A Campbell, "Penn" as he was called and had been since early on, was in the European Theater. He has signed up in August 1942, and after training had been shipped out of New York in the Spring of 1943. Mrs. Campbell heard from her son as often as he could write and told of the places he saw and how much he missed home and home cooking. In the summer of 1944 while in Italy on a mission he was wounded in the shoulder and received a purple heart. He was sent to Germany for treatment, and after several weeks returned to his unit. As the war with Germany was continuing in the spring of 1945, some of the "boys" as Mrs. Campbell referred to them, were returning home for furlough and several of these stories were appearing in the local paper in Colbert County, AL area. The more stories she read, the more concerned she became that her son was not amoung them.
On May 4, 1945 she wrote a letter to the War Dept. in Washington, D.C. asking for her son to be returned home. This letter is attached to this page, as well as the response she received from the War Dept. In August of 1945, after the end of the war with Germany had been declared, she wrote her second letter, this one to President Harry Truman. This letter along with the second response is also attached to this page.
I welcome you to read how this Mother from a farm in Alabama, expressed her desire and wishes to have her son returned home. This story is written by the daughter of the solider who never knew her father. These documents were found in his personnel file at the National Records Office in St. Louis. Notice the singe on the edges due to the fire in 1973.