Editor's Note: An upcoming PBS broadcast, "Bob Hope", on Dec. 29, prompted a reader to reflect on his own opportunity to see Hope during a filmed USO show at Camp Eagle, south-east of Huế in central Vietnam on Dec. 25, 1969. This is the letter Lewis Tomasetti wrote to his family, back in Riverdale, after seing the show.

Thanks for the wonderful Christmas card

Dec. 27, 1969,

Hello Mom, Dad & family,

Just Lou again. I am fine and well. Finally got on firebase rifle the 22nd of Dec.

Hey, the 25th, 30 men out of our platoon got to go to the Bob Hope show at Camp Eagle. I was one of them. Boy!, was it good, especially Bob, Miss World and Connie Stevens.

Hey, because we are grunts and just came out of the field when we got to the show. There were 15,000 soldiers there, and because we are grunts, they put us in front of the stage, on the ground, in front of even the Generals, 5 ft from Hope.

That's what I call a seat. Here they took pictures of us grunts and other people in the front row like the Generals. I'm pretty sure I got my picture taken with other guys from our Company. So watch the show on T.V.

Ha, ha, ole ugly Lou on T.V., that is if they don't cut that part of the film from the show, because they take a lot of filming of shows over here to make only one to show on T.V.

Sure hope you all had a great Christmas Mom, hope your New Year is better, hope Big Ted likes the boots.

So you bought Sue's Mustang. Boy!, you're sure getting a good deal and a nice little car.

Mom, I think you all should just sell my car like it is and get rid of it. It's just a hassle messing with it. The car is not worth putting money in it, like $200 etc. or less or more. Mom, the car itself is worth just a little over $200 fixed up. It isn't worth it, messing around with it. Sell it, or do what you want. Too, Mom, the car is seven-years-old and not worth much money value.

Glad to hear everyone is fine & ok, and are doing great.

Glad to hear Davy Boone is going to Germany, but sad to hear Art is coming over here.

Hey Mom, got a Christmas card & a five dollar check from God Mother, Alice Errotobere, am sending it home to be cashed, it's endorsed. Can't cash it over here, mainly because it's a personal check.

Well, say hi to everyone for me Mom. Bye for now.

Love Lewis,

p.s. Got a letter from Joe B. already.

Lewis Tomasetti, a life long resident of Riverdale, was a SPC 4, assigned to Delta Company 2/502 101st Airborne during the Vietnam conflict in 1969. 

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