Posted on Jul 15, 2015
LTC Stephen F.
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I was recently reminded me of the importance and significance of mail call especially in the days before email, cell phones and texting existed in the 1950's 1960's, 1970's and I think through the 1980's. Waiting with anticipation in formation as a young enlisted man in sun, snow, rain or wind for mail call. The weather was much less important than hearing the names of friends called out to get mail and then hearing my own name which was wonderful. Going back to the barracks to smell envelopes from girl friends, read the letters on my bunk.
Later as a cadet at West Point one of the duties of the freshman class known as plebes was to distribute the mail to the upper classmen. It was a very important function and seemed to release a sense of common humanity and a brief period of humane treatment.
After I was commissioned in 1980, my mail was delivered to me except when we were away from home station when we would have mail call or else wait until the operation was over and then mail would be distributed.
Images: mail call wingen 70th ID WWII; Korean War early afternoon mail call brought these Thunderbirds in the 279th Infantry; Mail call! Pfc Glen Zachery of the 19th Army Postal Unit brings a sack of mail to the
Edited 2 y ago
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SPC Jeffrey Bly
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We were out in the field this one time and we had mail call. The 1Sgt was calling us out. He called out Hernandez. Hernandez had not come out to the field with us. So the 1Sgt called out Hernandez again. Still no one replied. So the 1Sgt says "God damn it Hernandez, I knows you out there!" Of course for fear of questioning Top, we all kept our mouths shut. So he begins to spell it out, "H-E-N-R-I-K-S-O-N, Hernandez!" Henrikson, of course wanting his mail speaks up. "That's Henrikson 1sgt." Top replies, "God damn you Hernandez, get out here and get your mail!" To which Henrikson replies, "Yes 1Sgt!" Nobody said anything at the time for fear of insubordination, but we all got a pretty good chuckle out of it afterwards.

Ah, the good old days!
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SGT Ace Paul
SGT Ace Paul
2 mo
Somebody sent a letter to a guy in my Basic Training Platoon. They wrote his name and included Pooky Bear in the middle on the envelope. Johnson was known as Pooky Bear all through Basic, AIT, Jump School and for the next 4 years.
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SSG Supply Sergeant (S4)
SSG (Join to see)
2 mo
Mail call formations are still done in basic training and AIT but that's about it.
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PO3 Michael Moran
PO3 Michael Moran
16 d
While in Navy boot camp I received a letter with a Dallas TX return address. I had distant relatives in Dallas so I opened it. From the first few lines I realized 2 things. 1. That this letter was meant for someone with the same first and last name as me. 2. That he had a LOT more fun his last night at home than I did. So I wrote a short note to the girl in Dallas and asked for this guy's company number. She wrote back with it and a couple days later I managed to get over to his company and give him his mail. We both had a good laugh about it. I hope his girlfriend wasn't too embarrassed realizing that I had read the letter. That was in 1966 and I still think about them every once in a while.
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SGT Charles Cameron
SGT Charles Cameron
10 d
Mail Call was GREAT...except if there was something for someone from someone named "Jody".
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SFC Observer   Controller/Trainer (Oc/T)
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I also remember forming for pay call
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1SG Jerry Butts
1SG Jerry Butts
14 d
From 1970 (in Wuerzburg Germany with Hqs. 3rd Infantry Division; until 1973; at then what was called Kapaun Barracks; with Hqs. 37th Transportation Group I remember having formations to receive my mail after that with the arrival of a Mail Clerk and the "so called VOLAR Army (no Draftees); we received our mail by our mailbox. Report for pay and different people standing in line to get part of your money for one reason or another; the arrival of the Unit Lounge (I tended Bar for about 6 months).
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CW2 Donald Loughrey
CW2 Donald Loughrey
10 d
Yeah I remember lining up at Retreat Formation and Reporting to the Pay Officer to collect my pay as a young Infantryman in 1974. While not forced (of course....) to donate to CFC or AER, those who chose not to remained in Formation at Parade Rest to "reflect" on their decision awhile. Wasn't long until the 1SG had 100 percent participation in both collection efforts...with the $1.00 donation for the Old Soldier's Home.
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SGT Charles Cameron
SGT Charles Cameron
10 d
Payroll Day was exciting...even to be able to put a little away in a savings bond...and that was always "out of sight, out of mind" until needed. My mom kept mine for me @ home
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SFC Observer   Controller/Trainer (Oc/T)
SFC (Join to see)
9 d
SGT Charles Cameron yea, turned out my mom had spent the money/cashier checks I sent home.
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Lt Col Charlie Brown
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Capt Christian D. Orr
Capt Christian D. Orr
5 mo
Great song. Who’s the 1 schmuck who downvoted this post?!
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LCpl Dana Paulsen
LCpl Dana Paulsen
4 mo
Great song!
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TSgt Infantryman
TSgt (Join to see)
4 mo
SGT James (Mike) White - It opened here in Dubai???
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PO2 Geoffrey Bieniek
PO2 Geoffrey Bieniek
4 mo
Thanks for showing me this video, I hadnt heard it before. Brought me back for sure
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