NOTE FROM RUSS-NOTICE THE STRAW TOTE IN THE HANDS OF THE SAILOR IN FRONT - Received this email 2/23/06:
I am the daughter of Lawrence Bradley Camp who served with you on the SS Mountrail. My father died in 1991. During his lifetime he continued correspondence with Mr. Clapp. He spoke often of his Navy Days. He was so proud of his service on the Mountrail. He spoke of a shipmate named Larson as well.
Last week I read about the unfortunate village on Leyte. Memories of my father talking about Leyte Gulf sparked my interest to find your website about the Mountrail. I want you to know how much I appreciate the history of the ships service in the Pacific. I never interviewed my father and recorded his memories of that time. Reading the history that I didnít think to record really helped me to remember things my father said through the years.
I clicked on the pictures that his shipmate Glen had contributed. When I got to the section ďLibertyĒ I clicked, and there in the front rickshaw was my father smiling and holding on to a straw tote that he ultimately brought home to my mother. I was very surprised to see my fatherís picture on the internet! Since my motherís death in 1994, I have the straw tote, a Chinese silk dress and toy china teacups that my father brought home to me. Another sailor took home the teapot for his little girl.
A curious thing happened. Just days before the recent Leyte tragedy my daughter was helping me clean out a closet. She held up the straw tote asking what it was. I showed her my fatherís navy cap which I keep inside it and told her the story of the tote. This was just a few days before I found my fatherís picture with the tote.
Marian Lawrence Camp