Letters from Oregon Boys in France
Compiled by Mrs. Frank Wilmot 1918
Forest Woods Is Wounded in Action
From Corporal Forest Woods, with US infantry in France, a letter has been received announcing that he is in a hospital with a slight wound in his right arm, having been struck by shrapnel. His letter is written to W.H. Smith of Roberts Brothers store, he being a former employee of that firm. He has a wife and small son in Portland. The following letter gives high praise to the American Red Cross. He writes:
I was wounded in my right arm. Stopped a piece of shrapnel about the size of a stamp and received a flesh wound. I was operated on and had it removed.
There have been big doings with the Americans at the front this summer. It was helping the boys straighten out that horseshoe in the line that I got "bumped". It is surely good to get between sheets in a good bed again, with a suit of pajamas to sleep in, after sleeping in my clothes ever since I landed in France. We just take off our shoes and socks and roll up in a blanket and call it a day. The first bath I had since July 6th was August 7th. Can you beat it? The clothes I took off I had no further use for --- ha! ha! --- "gooybye cooties", I said as I was put on the table and the boys bathed me. I sort of miss the little fellows though. It surely is great to get clean again.
One thing that means so much to the American boys is the fine wholesome women doing Red Cross work over here, the nurses and the nurses' aides, I mean. The work they do is wonderful and it is no snap either. There is no better class of women in the world than right over here doing their bit in this cause. The Red Cross needs all the help you can give and encouragement, too. You are "mothered" here in the hospital like your own mother would do if you were sick at home. When you have been knocking around the front line awhile and come back here for a month or two and get the treatment you do, you suddenly get a new idea of life. Somehow you find yourself, Mr. Smith. You begin to realize a few things in life and see for the first time why a mother gives and gives and never expects to get anything in return.
There goes "chow" call which always brings an eager line, believe me!