To review: On February 20, 1948, the Buslee’s had learned that their son’s Air Force ring, a gift from them, had surfaced in Czechoslovakia.
On March 8, the Buslee’s wrote to both Mr. B – the translator living in Texas – and Z – the finder of the ring. Last week’s post presented their letter to Mr. B and this week’s post will present their letter to Z.
411 Wisner Avenue
Park Ridge, Illinois U.S.A.
March 8, 1948
Your letter of December 22, 1947 to your friend Mr. B was forwarded to us through the Adjutant General’s Office so that we could personally get in touch with you and Mr. B. This correspondence has just been received by us.
We are the parents of Lt. John O. Buslee, O-764209, who we were informed lost his life in a plane on a mission over Magdeburg, Germany in September 1944. Yes, it is his ring which you describe and now have. We gave it to him as a gift before he went overseas, and we would be very happy to have it back as a keepsake.
Z, it would be wonderful if you could help us get the ring back and write to us and tell us all you know about our son, the condition of the plane and, if possible, if our son and the rest of the men were dead when the plane reached the ground. Any news you can tell us we will be thankful for.
The Government has never been able to tell us anything about him due to the fact that the plane came down in enemy territory, so you can well imagine how word from you will help to ease our broken hearts. He was our only son.
We are so grateful to both you and Mr. B for your effort in trying to locate us and we assure you we shall always remember your thoughtfulness.
We will gladly reimburse you for any expense you have in returning the ring to us.
We patiently await an early reply from both of you gentlemen and our sincere thanks to you both for your kindness.
The anxious parents of John O. Buslee.
Mr. and Mrs. John Buslee
411 Wisner Avenue
Park Ridge, Illinois, U.S.A.
Notice that the Buslee’s did not specify the date in September 1944 in which their son lost his life. They were probably perplexed, as I am, as to why Z reported the date in his letter as September 22 instead of the actual date of the mid-air collision, September 28. They chose not to correct the date or pursue any line of questioning regarding the date. Were they skeptical, as I am, with Z’s claims, considering the inaccurate date? Skepticism only goes so far, though, if Z actually has the ring.
This transcription is a careful reproduction of the original except for occasional spelling and punctuation corrections. Some names have been masked to protect the privacy of those individuals and their families. In some circumstances, based on relevancy or a desire to mask locations, some material may not have been transcribed.
Thank you to John Dale Kielhofer, John Oliver (Jay) Buslee’s nephew, for sharing these letters with me.
© Cindy Farrar Bryan and The Arrowhead Club, 2014