DECEMBER 30, 1944
WASHINGTON, Friday—Every now and then someone does a very kind thing and one would like to thank him at once. Today I am constrained to thank a young man for a letter which he wrote on Christmas Eve, but I must do it through this column because he simply signs his letter "An Ex-Navy Pilot," giving the name of the ship on which our youngest son has been serving during the past year in the far-off Pacific.
The young man writes: "I have just returned from duty in the Pacific on the carrier X——. Thought you would like to know your son, John, is in good health and doing a wonderful job out there.
"We covered some 80,000 water miles since leaving San Diego, so you see we got around, out there. You have a wonderful son and I know you are very proud of him."
No mother could fail to appreciate the kindness which prompted such a note and to want to thank the writer. The boys who are pilots on the carriers have done extraordinary jobs. I hear a great deal about all the boys who are associated as shipmates with our various sons, so I have a great appreciation of the good work they do in all the different services.
I spent a part of yesterday in New York City, but most of my activities were of a purely personal nature, and Miss Thompson and I took the midnight train back to Washington.
This morning I had the pleasure of having a talk with General Frank T. Hines, and I am hoping that he will take up with the War Department the changing of the pin which is now worn by discharged veterans. If this is done, I hope wide publicity will be given to the new insignia, and that we will accustom ourselves to the realization that the young men we see wearing these pins have served their country and can serve no longer in a military way. These men are important, however, to every community in which they live and should be made to feel their importance. Many of them are fighting some kind of a physical handicap, even though we may not be able to detect it, and they deserve our consideration, our respect and our admiration.
From noon on, today, I have a rather full schedule of appointments, with people coming in to talk on different subjects. In addition I have on my desk a rather terrifying number of letters to sign, because they multiply greatly at this time of the year! Perhaps by tonight I will get caught up, but I still have enough to read to keep me busy for days.
I have just been introduced to a most noble-looking dog, a bull mastif who was brought back by one of our boys from England. He is kind and gentle with people, but I would hate to be another dog if he should take to disliking me! I always wonder how dogs decide whether to fight each other or to make friends, and I wish I knew the proper approach when introducing them to each other!