A boot camp letter penned in 1953 did not arrive in the recipient’s hands until more than six decades later. Private Bob Rodgers wrote his beloved wife a letter upon his arrival at Fort Campbell in Kentucky. The power at the Army post had gone out, giving the young soldier a break from peeling potatoes and shining boots. The letter he wrote during the unexpected down-time was somehow lost by the US Postal Service.
The boot camp letter was hand-delivered back to the now 79-year-old man earlier this month. In the 1953 letter the soldier shared the daily details of life inside the Army base. An excerpt from Private Bob Rodgers letter reads, “All you do is march, KP, shine boots and shine more boots and shine more boots and brass and more brass.”
New Carlisle, Indiana Postmaster Connie Tomaszewski hand-delivered the lost boot camp letter to its sender the same day that it finally arrived at her Post Office. Rodgers now lives in the southwestern region of Michigan.
When asked by local media what he thought after the lost boot camp letter finally being delivered, the former soldier approached the matter in a very affable manner. Rodgers asked if the remains of the horse and rider were also found when the letter resurfaced. Jean, his wife, died of cancer eight years ago.
Indiana Postmaster Tomaszewski said she has no idea where the 1953 boot camp letter had been for over 60 years. She said it could have been sitting around Fort Campbell for a long time, but noted there are a plethora of possibilities relating to how and where the letter got lost. Tomaszewski also stated that the important thing is that the letter finally found its way home.
A Greater Indiana District of the US Postal Service representative said sometimes old letters wind up at antique stores or flea markets after actually being delivered, and then plopped back into the mail at some point.
Jean and Bob Rodgers did not know they boot camp letter was lost. The young husband wrote to his wife almost every day, so one missing boot camp letter went entirely unnoticed.
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