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To Major General Roy D. Keehn
[August 8, 1935] Camp Grant, Illinois
I have just come in from the target range. We accomplished by 11:15 A.M. what took us to 4 P.M. last year. The troops, 165th Brigade will eat lunch in camp with their range firing completed. All, a great improvement over last year.
The Machine Gun and Howitzer School (Monday afternoon and Tuesday and Wednesday mornings) went over with a bang. All seemed delighted. Colonel Buchanan much pleased.1
The Bell Bowl demonstration Tuesday at 3:30 P.M. went off in great shape, the composite war strength company of the 131st Infantry staging a fine climax in an attack. Major Brown (their instructor) broke a rib in his zeal.
The Command Post Exercise showed a great improvement, and the Division Staff conducted and umpired the entire affair. The staff has done beautifully throughout. I am merely a spectator—except for the hour in Bell Bowl.
General McCoy arrived Tuesday noon and left Wednesday afternoon. He was much impressed, especially with the smooth way things were running and the manner in which the officers and non-coms were carrying themselves in conducting instruction.
A night compass bearing problem for the officers was carried out last night, starting at 8:30 P.M. Some completed their _ mile course in the dark by 9:20 P.M. and boarded a truck for camp. A few got lost. DeRoulet’s son,2 I understand, got in at 3:00 A.M. Colonel McKinley covered himself with glory, and a little mud. He made the most accurate course in direction and distance, finishing at 9:45 P.M. Which was a fine thing;—for if a man his age—not in the line— could do it in that fashion, the youngsters were barred from grousing.3
Everything is going well, though your presence and direction is sadly missed. Everyone is solicitous in inquiries regarding your improvement, which I understand, has been marked. God knows, it was time you had a decent break and a little freedom from pain.4
My prayers go for your rapid recovery.
Document Copy Text Source: George C. Marshall Papers, Illinois National Guard, George C. Marshall Research Library, Lexington, Virginia.
Document Format: Typed letter.
1. Lieutenant Colonel Kenneth Buchanan commanded the 106th Cavalry Headquarters Troop in Urbana, Illinois.
2. Lieutenant Colonel Alfred De Roulet commanded the Chemical Warfare section at Thirty-third Division headquarters. His son, First Lieutenant Paul A. De Roulet, served with the 131st Infantry, Company L.
3. Colonel James J. McKinley (b. 1877) served with the 108th Medical Regiment.
4. Keehn had been seriously injured in an automobile accident near Beulah, Wyoming, in July, while vacationing with his family. He was confined to the hospital with a broken left shoulder and a badly damaged right arm which was causing complications due to gangrene. His arm was amputated between the shoulder and elbow on September 1.
Recommended Citation: The Papers 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. 1, “The Soldierly Spirit,” December 1880-June 1939 (Baltimore and London: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1981), pp. 470-471.