Archive for January, 2009

Parker, Idaho
February 18, 1945     7:55 P.M.

My beloved,

Here we are alone again tonight.  These evenings that I’m alone with you make such an ache inside of me — and yet I love them.  It seems so strange to be lonely with people around all the time — friends and family, too.  But with me, there’s only one person who can fill the need of that special sort of loneliness.  I could be alone with you forever and never grow tired.  I’d be happy with you any place, any time.  You’ve always filled every quality I’d ever dreamed or hoped for in a husband it would be possible to gain such joy and happiness.  And darling, you’ll make such a wonderful father.  You’ll be kind and understanding, and yet firm when it’s necessary.  You won’t leave the rearing & disciplin of our children to their mother as so many do.

I’ve sent cards to Esquire, Reader’s Digest & The Improvement Era.  Is there anyone else I should notify of your  new address.

I’m so anxious for you to receive the pictures I mailed yesterday.  Let me know as soon as you get them – and if they don’t, I’ll send more.  I’ve decided it’s easier to take snapshots of Rick that to try and get a photographer down her when he’s in a happy mood — until he’s a little older.  And I’m sure you’ll be able to determine just as much about him.  He’s so darn precious.  You couldn’t have given me anything more wonderful.  I’m counting on you being here for his first birthday at least.  That’s not too optimistic is it?

I’ve had quite a day today.  Dad and Myrtle went to Sunday School.  Mrs. Barnes came over to see Rick & I visited for quite awhile.  They’re living in Pocatello now & she’d some up to see Dallas (she’s expecting any day).  After noon, it was so sunny & nice, that I bundled Rick up and went over to Ruth’s.  We took the babies down to the store with us, and weighed Betty.  Rick went to sleep on the way down so I didn’t waken him to weigh him.  Betty weighs nearly fifteen pounds and is now five months old.  Lawrence went fishing — and then Helen stopped to take me to the show.  Ruth watched Rick so I went.  “Frenchman’s Creek” — with Joan Fontaine.  It was an adventure story, with pirates & all that.  Helen had just had a letter from Ivan saying their winter had turned into mud, so I can imagine your difficulties.

Darling, I can’t help but dream and pray that the day will be soon for your return.  The hour, the second, cannot come too quickly for me.  It’ll be such heaven to have my arms tight about you and feel you close, again.  You’ll always be the most important part of me.  the part that radiates life and joy & happiness.  I adore everything about you with all my heart and soul and always will.  There’s nothing could ever change that love, only to increase it.

Myrtle expects to teach this week and then quit.  I think Mrs. Harold Davenport is going to finish the year out for her.  Just think — Myrtle will be 43 when the baby is born.  His parents will be older than yours when  you were born.  It hardly seems possible it’s going to happen, but to watch her expanding waist line you can’t help be see it’s true.

Afton Remington is bringing his wife & new daughter home from the hospital this Wednesday.  I told you wrong on the name — It’s to be Katherine Jenetta, after her two grandmothers & to be called Kathie Jean.  Raymond Parker’s wife is expecting too, I hear tell.

Wilford is bringing a play to Parker tomorrow night.

Sweetheart, remember always, that you mean all the world to me — God be with you always, protect you, and return you safely home to–

Your love wife & son,

Zola & Rick

Hooray!  I’m up to Grandma’s letters now.  We get to hear more about what’s happening on the home front now.  We also get to hear about baby Rick.  I love the imagery of weighing the babies down at the store . . . if somebody did that today, there’d probably be some sort of action taken against them.  There’s a lot of news about family and friends and their babies.

Over the weekend, I heard from a 91-year-old gentleman, Ray Manuel, who trained, for a short time, with Lt. Dewain Silvester who was the platoon leader.  He also ran into Grandpa again at a reunion in Philadelphia.  He’s going to try to find pictures he has with Grandpa in them from that reunion.  I’m excited to make connections like this.   More to come soon.

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Yesterday I received a very fun email from a very distant relative, “We are 9th cousins, once removed. My name is Walter Nieber.”  He’s been doing research on the Rudd family and found us while researching the Rudds.  He sent me quite a bit of information, which I have published on it’s own page (“Rudd Family” page at the top of the blog) on this site,  here.  I feel very blessed to have made this connection because it gives me more information than I had previously about this family line.

I hope you enjoy this information as much as I have.  There’s so much I don’t know about my ancestors.  I know that Grandma Zola did a lot of family history.  I think she’s still helping us do our own research.  However these connections were made, I’m very grateful.  Thank you, Walter.

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3, February, 1945

Perfect little family,

Do you know there is a great big awkward guy over here who is indeed crazy about you?  Perhaps crazy in other ways too, but anyhow, I love you with all my heart.

How are you tonight?  Both of you, I mean.  I missed writing last night and the letter night before last wasn’t much of a letter.  Can you forgive me?

I just finished answering the letter I received from Dee about ten days ago.  I surely hope I get a chance to look him up.  It would surely make him feel good and it wouldn’t do me any harm.  If the occasion arises, I shall certainly grab it.

I received a couple of V-mail letters from you yesterday, dated the eleventh and thirteenth of January respectively.  They were swell.  Darling, you’re so heavenly and thoughtful.  How the Lord ever saw fit to bless me so abundantly, I shall never know.  I’m so proud of my beautiful wife and baby boy.

In one letter, you say he’s a perfect angel and in the next you say I should hear him now.  How I’d like to.  I doubt if I’d ever let him cry either without picking him up.  Be careful though.  He’ll soon be as bad as his old man.

I’m so glad he looks like the baby you wanted, though I’m sure no matter how he looked, even if as bad as me, you’d say the same.  I’m glad too that he enjoys eating and sleeping.  Caution him each day to take advantage of it.

In none of your letters so far have you mentioned knowing that I was over hear.  You should have heard, at least I hope so.  Never worry though.  I’m in good hands and the weather is really breaking up into spring, if only it lasts.

Here’s that kiss you asked me to knock you and, Honey, knock me one in return.  I love you so dearly, my sweetheart, more than words could ever express.  If only my gift of gab included serious expressive words to tell you I love you, I adore you, I worship everything about you.  You’re so fine, so pretty, so heavenly, so thoughtful.  I can never thank you enough for accepting me to be your husband.  When peace returns, I’ll try so hard to keep you happy and comfortable and make a home you will be proud of.  My love for you grows each day, if only my expression could show it.

Goodnight, my darling, sleep tonight.  Who knows, the Russians may be in Berlin by morning and the end of this phase of the war near.  At any rate, time will pass briskly and I shall be home bothering you again before you know it.

Your homesick old man, Dewain

Finally, Grandpa knows that he’s a dad.  I don’t know if anybody still has those in between letters.    My next Dewain-letter is dated 2/20 and we get to start our Zola-letters with a 2/18 letter.  I’m not going to try to match up the letters as received and answered – but I will post them by date.  So Grandma’s next!!!!  I can’t wait to hear her side.

Thanks for being patient in my getting these letters posted.  I hope to share some family history about some of our Rudd ancestors soon.  I received an email from a gentleman who’s been doing research on the Rudd family line, and he gave me quite a bit of information.  Grandma would be pleased, because I always think of her as the family historian.

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From 1st Lt. Dewain Silvester 0-1050923
BtrY.C. 778AAA AwBn(sP)
A.P.O. 403 c/o Postmaster
New York, New York

To: Mrs. Dewain Silvester
Box 11,
Parker, Idaho

In France, 6, January, 1945

Precious little family?

Observe that there is still a question mark.  I hope and pray that you are well and happy.  You know how very  much I love you.  You’re such a wonderfully perfect wife.  I’m so proud.

I just took time out to listen to a German propaganda program in English.  They paint is just as well for their people as we do for ours.  Perhaps soon the truth can be known.  Most of the stations we can get are of German origin.  the Allied Expeditionary Forces program from the British Broadcasting Company is our old stand by with delightful music and news from home.

Forgive me, please, for getting off on such a subject.  More better I should tell you that the chow over here is excellent.  I’ve got to hand it to the supply boys.  We have certainly been taken care of.  The only thing we lack for happiness, outside of being home in peace, of course, is mail.  Now, don’t worry.  It’ll get here.  Soon.  I hope mine to you are spaced well enough to keep you from worrying.  I’ll say Goodnight, now.  There was a busy day behind and another ahead.  I love you with all my heart, my darling.


Grandpa’s first letter of the new year, and he’s still wondering about his new baby, who’s two weeks old now.  It’s nice to hear he’s eating well, considering what he’s in the middle of doing (in the middle of things in the middle of winter doesn’t sound like anybody’s idea of a good time).

Our next letter from Grandpa comes in February, and then we start having Grandma’s letters back too.  I can’t wait to hear her side of the story.

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