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My words and photographs are copyrighted, and may not be used without permission, even on Pinterest.

~ Kathy M.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

The War Letters: Uncle John Visits a Cemetery in Natal, Brazil

Welcome!  This Sepia Saturday post is not on topic for this week's photo prompt, which has to do with books.  I have added it as extra credit photo essay and have written another post regarding books, which may be seen by "CLICKING HERE ".

This is also War Letters post.  The War Letters are a manuscript compiled and typed by Lyle Hedrick, my Great Uncle Hobart Hedrick and Great Aunt Flora Fletcher Hedrick's boy, and Danny Hedrick's brother.  In the following letter, my Great Uncle John Hedrick (Hobart's younger brother) was stationed in Natal, Brazil in World War II.  John wrote it to his sister-in-law, Flora.  

I find the content of this letter very fascinating indeed.  Leave it to a Hedrick or a Letsom to find it great fun to visit a local cemetery in Natal, Brazil on their free time!  By the way, the AACS stands for the Army Airways Communications System, and that was Uncle John's job while in Brazil.

Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy ~ Kathy Matthews
John Hedrick, World War II

Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy ~ Kathy Matthews
Hobart and Flora Hedrick with baby Danny 
and Flora's Dad, E.B. Fletcher in 1925

Source:  Google Maps

Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy ~ Kathy Matthews

 Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy ~ Kathy Matthews

 Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy ~ Kathy Matthews

 Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy ~ Kathy Matthews

Oh, you must know that I searched and searched for images of cemeteries in Brazil during 1944.  I also searched in vain for The Belle of Napal.  All that I could come up with is this much more recent photo:

 Source: Deep

Just in case you are wondering what in the world the U.S. was doing in Brazil during World War II, I have gathered up some information about that.  Apparently, Brazil had decided to side with the U.S. and to boycott all things German.  In 1940, the U.S. began building and staffing bases in Napal and Recife (among other cities).  After Pearl Harbor was attacked, they increased their presence there.  Here is a comprehensive article of the ins and outs of that:

The Establishment of United States Army Forces in BrazilNavy

For a blog featuring lots of Navy photos taken in Recife, Brazil between 1931 and 1944 by Charles Rumsey, please check out this link:


So, there you are, my friends.  I hope that you enjoyed this post as much as I did!  That Uncle John is quite a writer, isn't he? 

Take care and God bless,

Kathy M.

For my other Sepia Saturday Posts, go to the sidebar on the left and scroll down until you get to this photo of my Dad and me for the list.  Make sure to visit my friends and read their cool stories over at Sepia Saturday.

At Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy, if you miss a day, you miss a lot!  All material on this post is copyrighted and not for use without my permission ...Please click here to go to my home page and see what is happening in Mayberry today.
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Hart Johnson said...

Oh, what a fun letter--he was a funny man! My family vets were in the Pacific during WW2. My grandma was quite the pen pal--she had about 4 different men writing to her and sending her cigarettes.

Postcardy said...

I didn't know about the U.S. being in Brazil. There are a lot of interesting details in that letter and also some funny stories.

Bob Scotney said...

I,m gla you told us what the US was doing in Brazil. I had assumed that the war had not reached there other than German shipping and the River Plate.
A fascinating letter.

Wendy said...

Uncle John is a hoot!

Joy said...

Uncle John was a vivid letter writer, what a lot he fitted into a short space. Fascinating social (and family) history.

Karen S. said...

Your uncle John was an amazing writer...such lively and detailed information.... and new things too, this was an enjoyable read! Great photos as well!

Christine H. said...

He certainly knew how to write a letter. What an amusing and interesting man.

Alan Burnett said...

There is something so revealing about such an original source document as this, they shine such an interesting light on the social, economic and political history of the time.

No Copying!


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