Almost four months since the B-17’s of the Buslee and Brodie crews of the 384th Bomb Group collided over Magdeburg, Germany, the father of David Franklin Albrecht, co-pilot of the Buslee crew, wrote a letter to Jay Buslee’s (the pilot’s) parents. The boys were still considered Missing in Action.
January 22, 1945
(Letter incorrectly dated December 22, 1945)
Louis M. Albrecht, Pastor
Mr. John Buslee
Park Ridge, Illinois.
Dear Friends: We appreciate your letters and interest and wish to thank you. I am enclosing a copy of a circular letter which we sent to a number of our friends. There is very little to add. We are anxiously waiting every day for more news.
Pat [David Albrect’s wife Patricia] has had her baby girl now. She is getting along real well. Since her folks are working that leaves her with the house work and she seems to be very busy. She plans to come out to be with us soon.
Our second boy had a very narrow escape. A machine gun was turned onto his buddy and himself. His buddy was killed. Junior received some scalp wounds. The last letter was written Jan. 8. He doesn’t expect to get to the front line till spring. We hope and pray that the war may be over before he has to get into action.
We have also been writing to different members of the families of our boys crew. The news and response was similar to that which you received. We also hope with you for more and better news.
Louis M. Albrecht
Mr. Albrecht included the circular letter,
(Enclosed Circular Letter)
Louis M. Albrecht, Pastor
Dear Friends: As you can see by the heading we are now located at Scribner. Several factors entered to make moving advisable. This is a large town, a bigger field, and has more desirable school facilities. It seemed to be an advicable step from every viewpoint.
The people here are just wonderful, but that is nothing unusual, as we have always found excellent people wherever we were. We have had extremes of joys and sorrows during the past few months and found that friends from everywhere prayed for and sympathized with us. During the last three months we received in the neighborhood of three hundred lovely cards and messages of sympathy and good will. It is almost impossible to write a personal letter to all but we want you to know that we appreciate your kindnesses and thoughtfulness. We would enjoy a visit from you.
Our older son, David, has been missing since Sept 28 1944. We have not received any other information. He had been commended for meritorious service and had attained the rank of First Lieut. The younger boy, Louis Jr. through a series of bad breaks caused mostly by political bungling, was finally reverted to the infantry and went into active service in Holland and Germany. He was wounded while in action at the front in Germany on Dec. 1 and is now recuperating in England. He is probably back at the front by this time. He has been awarded the purple heart. Last letter written Dec. 26.
The rest of us are here; the girls in school and Mrs. A. and I are trying to do the pastoral work for this parish. This is a town of about one thousand, mixed nationalities but a majority of German descent. It is a beautiful town located on the Elkhorn River. The church and parsonage are side by side and the city park is just across the street to the east. The church had been re-decorated during the past year. New chancel and pews. We have a nice pipe organ and gas heat throughout. No coal to carry nor ashes to clean out. Just keep warm and pay the bills at the end of every month.
There have been quite a number of deaths this fall. Mostly older people. This town was hit by a terrific flood last June 11. It has almost fully recovered. The people set to work with a will and have re-built better than ever. The railroad to Dodge and beyond is almost ready for use.
We hope that this circular letter will partly compensate for the nice messages and cards we have received. May God’s blessings be with you and protect you and yours is our prayer.
Mr. and Mrs. Louis K. Albrecht and Girls.
The 1st Congregational Church of Scribner, Nebraska is today known as United Church of Christ. It is located at 614 Howard Street.
Thank you to John Dale Kielhofer, John Oliver (Jay) Buslee’s nephew, for sharing this family letter with me.
© Cindy Farrar Bryan and The Arrowhead Club, 2020