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To Herby Funston
February 2, 1944 [Washington, D.C.]
My dear Herby,
I like your letter, the fact that you want to do your full part in licking these Japs, and that you are training every day to prepare to serve the country as a soldier.1
It is true “that selling and buying bonds and stamps and salvaging is fighting a war”. These things must be done, so somebody must do them and that seems to be your duty at the present time. But I sympathize with you in your desire to avenge the “nice kid” from your town who became a prisoner in the Philippines.
Be patient and don’t give up the effort you are now making, but I must confess to you that it makes me sad as well as very angry to think that these Japs and Nazis have brought us to such a pass that fine, clean young boys like you must be thinking of killing men, of machine guns, bombs and other deadly tools of war. We are in the terrible business of straightening out this demoralized world so that you and your friends and millions of boys and girls like you may think more of kindness than of death and hatreds and may live useful lives in a peaceful world. But today your older brothers and your fathers and cousins need your backing at home every day of the week.
Document Copy Text Source: George C. Marshall Papers, Pentagon Office Collection, General Materials, George C. Marshall Research Library, Lexington, Virginia.
Document Format: Typed letter.
1. Herby Funston was a youngster from Keota, Iowa. His letter to the chief of staff is not in the Marshall papers.
Recommended Citation: ThePapers of George Catlett Marshall, ed.Larry I. Bland and Sharon Ritenour Stevens(Lexington, Va.: The George C. Marshall Foundation, 1981- ). Electronic version based on The Papers of George Catlett Marshall, vol. 4, “Aggressive and Determined Leadership,” June 1, 1943-December 31, 1944 (Baltimore and London: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1996), p. 261.