Letters Home: Harley Hitchcock

From the January 31, 1918 Skidmore News:

Likes Sailor Life.

In a letter from Harley Hitchcock aboard the U. S. S. Fanning written the 9th of this month, he says his is a busy life, but that he likes the navy fine and that it makes men of those who take interest in the work, aside from affording a chance to see and learn of things that could not be seen or heard in other ways.

He speaks in praise of the officer in charge of the Great Lakes Training Station and of the band located there, and also tells of the royal entertainment accorded the sailors by the people of Philadelphia.

His first two days at sea were blue ones for him and made him long for “dear old Skidmore,” as he puts it, but since then sea sickness has no terrors for him.

Mr. Hitchcock tells of the sinking of a German submarine by his vessel, which has been told by newspaper reports, and modestly says that he had some part in the work but didn’t tell just what that part was.

It is not possible for we folks at home to realize the gravity of the war, according to the letter, and that the people would think more seriously of it if they could see what he has seen.

A fine turkey and goose dinner was enjoyed by Harley and his mates Christmas day.

The most unpleasant feature of navy life to this sailor boy is the severe storms that have to be weathered.

Harley is striving for the office of quartermaster, but does not know how soon this ambition will be accomplished.  Like the other boys in the service he would be glad to receive letters from his friends and may be reached by addressing Harley A. Hitchcock, U. S. S. Fanning, care Postmaster, New York, N. Y.