DEAR ABBY: You have some amazing readers! When I wrote about my mother's adventures in the Desert Battalion during World War II, I had no idea there would be such a response.
Within 12 hours after my letter appeared in your column on May 30, I received a dozen phone calls and numerous e-mail messages. Two days later, letters started arriving.
With only my name and hometown, your readers tracked me down to tell me they had located copies of "The Desert Battalion" on various book-search sites.
One man had a copy he was kind enough to send to me; another had one because he was a personal friend of Mrs. Edward G. Robinson's and had actually accompanied the battalion on several trips to visit the troops in 1943-44; and a lady from San Diego named Betty called to say she had been one of the original battalion!
Amazingly, Mrs. Robinson's granddaughter also called. We talked for an hour about her grandmother's reminiscences of the battalion. We plan to correspond further.
I was able to order a copy of the book, which I have given to Mom; received another as a gift; and learned much about Gen. Patton's secret "Camp X" near Palm Desert, Calif. The Desert Battalion was the only civilian group to go there or know about it.
It's been an amazing experience, thanks to you, your readers, and the U.S. Postal Service, which delivered many letters to me addressed only with my name, city and state! -- DAVE KOHL, WEST LINN, ORE.
DEAR DAVE: My readers are the most caring and generous people in the world. I'm not surprised that they were galvanized to action after reading your letter. Thank you for sharing your happiness. (I'll have more on this subject tomorrow.)