"Stroup was a man of rare courage and character. Few chaplains put themselves in harm's way as he did repeatedly. Perhaps the highest compliment I can offer is that Stroup was someone I very much would have liked to know." CARLO D'ESTE, best-selling military historian.

"Easy to read, these letters may well serve new chaplains to set direction for their military ministry. Experienced chaplains can also use them as azimuth check for what they are doing." GILBERT H. PINGEL, Commandant, US Army Chaplaincy Center and School.

Letters from the Pacific: A Combat Chaplain in World War II. Russell Cartwright Stroup. Edited with an Introduction by Richard Cartwright Austin. University of Missouri Press. ISBN 0-8262-1288-3, Hardbound. 214 pages. Illustrated. Autographed by the editor. $20.00, shipping included.

 

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Letters from the Pacific is urgently relevant to people of faith who wish to deepen Christian witness and ministry amid the tragic conflicts spreading across our world today.

Creekside Press has acquired the inventory of Letters from the Pacific from the University of Missouri Press and has taken responsibility for distribution. We are offering a copy to any lending library - school, church, or public - that requests it, for handling and shipping charge only. And church groups that wish to employ Letters from the Pacific in reading or study groups may secure multiple copies. For the details of these offers, and how to order, please click here.

 

"Here you have a representation of the 'ever invincible,' as they say, Japanese army crawling to the attack. Lately most of the crawling has been in the other direction."; Stroup mailed this Japanese postcard on July 12, 1944, from the 1112th Engineer Combat Group, near the end of the costly Biak Island campaign, off New Guinea.


US Army Chaplain Russell Cartwright Stroup served with, and wrote about, these units in New Guinea and the Philippines:

6th Infantry Division, 1st Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Regiment

41st Infantry Division, 162d Infantry Regiment, 163d Infantry Regiment

100th Infantry Division, 399th Infantry Regiment

239th Combat Engineer Battalion

1112th Engineer Combat Group

A STROUP LETTER, June 24, 1944, from the 163d Infantry Regiment.

Dearest family,

There is a road that leads from our forward position where I am stationed to the Regimental Headquarters in the rear. The miles it wanders up hill and down lie through a brushy country made to order for ambuscades. While we control the important points, there are long stretches where parties of Japanese wander and, as occasion offers, waylay our men.

The other day I started down this perilous road carrying a body to the rear for burial. I was in a truck with what seemed to be an adequate guard--the driver in the front with me and three men in the back of the truck with the body. Of course, all but myself were armed. We stopped at K Company on the way, where a wounded man had just been brought in. I spoke to him and went on; he was to follow later in an ambulance. We met a car load of high ranking officers who were on a tour of inspection, and I paid my respects to them. They, too, were to follow us after a while.

About three miles further we came over a rise in the road and, on the other side, saw a terrifying sight..


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