February 20, 1991
Somewhere in the desert near the Kuwait border, Saudi Arabia
I write to you today because of the many thoughts going through my head.
As I write, the “mother of all battles” looms ahead.
I expect to get my first glimpse of the horror and confusion of war within the next few days. By the time you read these words, I may have already done so.
I may have already witnessed the dreaded use of poison gas, which Saddam has so freely used in the past.
I may have already seen a good dear friend suffer and die as a result of enemy action.
Or ultimately, I may suffer that fatal wound which would break the hearts of you and all my loved ones.
I hope and pray that nothing like that happens to any of us, but I must face the possibilities.
I am not ready to die just yet. I have too much unfinished business.
I’ve lost too much time with you that I will never recover.
I need to raise a family with you and grow old and go on Social Security with you.
I don’t know if I can mentally handle combat.
Will I freeze up?
Will I make stupid mistakes and decisions that get the young men in my platoon killed?
Or, will I do my job as I have been trained and come home?
Only God knows.
I have cleaned and checked all of my equipment. My gear is ready, but am I?
Maybe I lack confidence in myself.
Many Marines have told me that they would not hesitate to go into combat with me. That makes me feel good, but I wonder if what they see in me is real.
The ultimate test of fortitude and discipline is upon me. I must not fail!
I hope and pray that I make it through this ordeal. I have so much to come home to and be thankful for. If I must experience war, I will be a changed man forever. War changes everyone involved in it.
You always said that you would love me no matter what happened. I’m confident in your love for me, but I wouldn’t want to put you through a lot of pain. I may be totally different from the man you married.
Please don’t misread me. I have no desire of ever letting you go! I want you to always be happy. I guess I don’t know what I’m trying to say…I can’t find the words. I guess what I’m trying to do is give you an out in case something should happen to me. I expect, and it is my desire, that you do everything possible to make your life happy and complete should I not return.
This is very difficult for me to write, and I imagine you are having a hard time reading it also. I’m not sure I should even mail this letter, but we never talked about these things.
Hell…we haven’t been married long enough!
Baby…I’m sorry if this letter upsets you. I felt I had to write and clear up some things that have been bothering me. You know how I hate loose ends! I like to be prepared too, as you well know!
Maybe, this will all be over quickly and the Iraqis will surrender in droves! They can’t possibly beat us, baby.
Hopefully, we’ll all be home soon, and we can forget about our old problems and my depressing letters! We can have the world’s biggest party, and then live our lives together peacefully, happily, and with much love!
I love you babe. Don’t ever forget it! We will be together again sometime soon.
Victory, and then home, are within our reach. I can’t wait!
Take care of yourself babe, because you are the only woman for me.
Be seeing you!
Love and Semper Fi,
PS-Our forces are gonna drop one bomb on the enemy tonight. Just one bomb…but it weighs 15,000 pounds! It oughta make ‘em say OUCH!