Burrell Hartley: POW Letter

  • Burrell Hartley and his wife
    Burrell Hartley and his wife (Courtesy photo)

Major Robert Rone, Hq. 924th FA Bn, to Mrs. Burrell Hartley regarding her husband missing in action

Somewhere in Belgium

22 February 1944

Dear Mrs Hartley:

I received your letter of inquiry the other day, and will attempt as best I can tell you the facts surrounding the incident involving Tec. Hartley’s missing in action status.

The service battery of this unit was located in a small village, which was located in the rear of the remainder of the battalion. Your husband was the battalion clerk. On 17 December 1944, the village was over run by German armor. Our service elements were unable to get out of the village because of the surprise attack of the Germans. The village was in the hands of the Germans for well over a month. When once again in our hands, a physical check was made to determine whether or not the Germans had created an atrocity in regard to our personnel that were located in the village. From physical investigation made, it is my own personal opinion that your husband and others of our service element have been taken as prisoners of war of the German government. This [is] merely an opinion and does not constitute any kind of official statement.

I sincerely hope that this short letter of explanation will clarify to some point your anxiety and hope for only the very best in regards to Tec. B. Hartley.


Robert P. Rone Major, 924 FA Bn Executive

January 23, 1945

My Darling Wife –

There is no need for worry or anxiety am all right. I think of you always and dream of our future. I love you. The war is over for me, all I have to do is wait for the end of the war. I miss you. Someday we will again be together to fulfill our plans.

Your loving Hubby Burrell

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