Cpl Roman F. Klick 36620923
HS 1393 Engr APO 709
c/o PM San Francisco, California
I might as well tell you now because I doubt if I can keep it a secret until the 1st of June as I wanted to. My promotion to Technician Fourth Grade (which I typed up for myself just as so long ago I was the one who had the job of typing up my promotion to Corporal) has been signed by (1) Captain Hanton, (2) Lt Suiter, (3) initialed by Captain Cook, (4) signed by Major Shubat and (5) is now waiting in Lewis' basket until the 1st of June when the entire Battalion is being promoted. It is kind of funny knowing it is practically a fact yet a certain amount of time must elapse before it really becomes official. And it is also kind of funny to be talking about it in advance because it really isn't true yet and people who go around talking about something they haven't got but just expect to get sometimes find their dreams do smash around them. Molyneaux's promotion has been signed by Lt London but hasn't gone thru the other channels so I'm trying to tell him that I outrank him at last but that isn't so and will probably never be so since if things go thru as planned, we will both become Sergeants on the same day and then the ranking will date back to the dates we made Corporal and he was one for about two or three months before I came to Camp White. Meanwhile Lewis is having a difficult time with his promotion since any promotion in the first three grades has to go up to the Colonel for approval and his hasn't gone over yet. He is only being promoted to Technical Sergeant (just like Mike and Sackett are now) for the time being since there is a Colonel Trower regulation in effect saying that a man can not be promoted more than one grade at a time unless he has special permission by Trower himself. Therefore, next month, after Lewis has held a Tech rating for one month or the required 30 days, he will be upped to Master Sergeant which is what Wally Moeller was promoted to several weeks ago and is the tops as far as enlisted men are concerned. Mersing, by that same rule, will not be able to get a Staff Sergeancy for his Supply Sergeant job right away but will have to first be promoted to Tec 4. The month after that he can then be appointed to his T/O rating. Meanwhile still another of the old trio is going up the scale and that is Edie who now has a draftsman's job in the Engineer section and will be able to become a Technician Fifth Grade which can also be called Corporal. I believe I have explained that T rating and buck rating difference to you before this but I'll sort of clear it up or mix it up further in your mind right now.
Buck ratings are usually for line jobs such as squad leaders and their assistants which in an Engineer outfit are called foreman and sub-foreman. The only buck ratings which weren't out on the line in the old GS regiment were the corporal Company Clerk and three sergeants in the Headquarters Platoon. The T ratings are technically not supposed to carry authority and were formerly considered as Private ratings with additional pay but under the actual conditions and later War Department Circulars it is said that technician ratings will carry the authority also as well as the pay. Charles Matcha is a T/4 and so was Harvey Beaumont but people don't go around calling them T/4 but rather Sergeant. In the army, the buck ratings are the most cherished, however, as they seem to have more prestige attached to them. Back at Camp White the fellows all thought I was a T/5 and were very surprised to know that Co Clks were line Corporals. But to the more practical fellows a T/4 and a Sgt rating don't look any different at all since both draw $93.60 per month at overseas standards or $78.00 back in the states. Gosh, I don't want to come back to the states, why just look, the expenses would be four times as high (what with the movies costing money, recreation in towns costing money, and airmail stamps to be purchased once again) and the pay would go down to below that of an overseas Cpl.
Well, I guess that is quite a bit of blah-blah on that subject and I guess I've just about worn it out for a while, eh?