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The Ring – December 4, 1948
To review: The American Embassy located the ring by September 23 and promised to send it to the Buslee’s.
The Buslee’s must have received the ring around November 17 or 18. They were very prompt in reporting news about the ring and assuming they didn’t wait long to write to Mr. B and Z’s family, their letter of November 18 to Mr. B – as referenced in this letter – must have reported their receipt of the ring. On November 23, Z’s family received their letter with the good news.
Dear Mr. and Mrs. Buslee,
Thank you for your letters, -one from Nov. 18, and one from Dec. 1., -and I am sorry, I did not answer your first at once. We thank you for your regards, dear Mrs. Buslee, which we cordially repeat for you and all your family.
I am happy, Mrs. Buslee, that you finally got that ring. Of course, it is damaged and even Z’s father in his letter try to explain why, as he write in his letter of Nov. 24, which I will try to translate for you. You must excuse all the errors I will make in the spelling, but the meaning will be the same. I mean the meaning of Z’s father’s letter. Well here it is:
Yesterday, Nov. 23, I have received your letter with its pleasant content, where you are informing us that you finally got the ring, which belonged to your son and for which you waited so long.
I can’t understand, why your military authorities waited so long and why they promised to me, they will deliver the ring in 21 days. But thanks God, that after 8 months you finally got the ring.
Dear Mrs. Buslee, war is a terrible thing, and it destroy everything and everybody without mercy. The damages of the stone in the ring is a witness, how terrible it is. The ring, as I do believe, is a witness, how terrible it was for the owner of the ring, who in the flames found his heroic death with the rest of the crew.
On the day of All Saints /this is a holiday in Czechoslovakia, when everybody goes to the cemetery to visit the graves of the dead, /I and my wife, we were in our thoughts with you and have thinking about you, how much sorrow you must have.
Now you have a chance, and hope, that your son will be returned to his fatherland and it will a bit relieve your sorrow, if you will be able to visit his grave. Please, excuse us, we did not answer your letter from Oct. 11, 1948. After the informations you gave us, we were looking for another letter, where you will tell us that finally you got the ring and it is so now.
My son Z finally got home from the army and now is working in Prague, where he is a baker. He was very surprised and it took such a long time for your Embassy to deliver the ring. But, after he remembered, how already in 1945 he tried to deliver the ring to the right family and failed and how finally with the help of Mr. B, this was made possible, he was pleased too.
Yours letters are full of thanks, faithfulness and we are happy, it was possible for us to do this little service for faraway family, which done so much for even us.
The package, which you mentioned in your letter, did not yet arrive, but we are sure it will bring plenty of joy to us-! Soon, as we will get it, we will let you know.
About my health; it’s not much good, but when better time will come, I hope to feel better. We have too much worry now, but we do hope, they will be gone with better times too.
We are very satisfied that the matter is finally closed and we are thanking you for all the regards and thanks which we repeat and remain with friendship, yours
Well, Mrs. Buslee, I hope you will understand that translation and I just can’t think of all those high words in Czech, to put the exact words in the English words, but the meaning is the same.
They have a terrible time in Czechoslovakia now, the same like in 1939-44, when the Nazis were he masters of that country. But now it is still worse, because now their own peoples-the Czech Communists-trained in Russia, are the bloody masters-! Please, if you will write to Z, PLEASE, do NOT mention anything about the situation in that poor country, because, that could mean-and I am sure it would mean-very hard time for Z and his family. About three month ago, Z’s father send me a letter, but more than half of his letter was complete mess; the censor just used his pen so much, I didn’t now, what Z’s father is writing about.
Please, Mrs. Buslee, DON’T thank me for anything-! I am just happy you finally have the ring and it’s a shame, it took so long to get it from our own Embassy–!
Our daughter got married, but Mrs. Buslee, I am sorry to tell you, that we have No daughter-! She done something I NEVER expect she would do and we just have so much sorrow in our hearths-!! I hate New York-!!!!!
To you and all your family, our best wishes and we remain sincerely yours:
Mr. & Mrs. B
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, 2015