Soldier Boy
Training "Boot" Camp
November 1944 - February 45
Kilgore, Texas
He was impressed with the oil rig right in the middle of the main street of Kilgore. There was a rush to train men and ship them out, so 6 months of training was reduced into 14 weeks. He had to do double shifts - 5AM to Midnight. I think about now he may have wished that he had stayed on the farm. The buildings were just tar paper over 2x4 structure. Then there were the 3 mile forced walks at 5AM with heavy wool coat, and raincoat over it, if it was drizzling.

If anyone complained or tried to get out of something he would be treated harsher. My dad didn't dare tell anyone that he has "night blindness" [ed. - seems strange to me then, that he drove the night shift all those years???] for fear of ill-treatment. Instead he would walk into trees or fall/trip into holes on night moves.

Each man had a turn at KP (kitchen patrol). He arrived late and all the jobs had been assigned. Sgt told him to make a broom holder out of 2x4 pieces. No tools. So he used a fire brand which he heated red hot in the stove and then would burn into the wood. Took him all day to make one hole.
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