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Letter written by American soldier during WWII reaches family 76 years later: 'A weird feeling'

The soldier's letter to his mom didn't make it to her on time but decades later, his wife and children got to read it.

Letter written by American soldier during WWII reaches family 76 years later: 'A weird feeling'
Cover Image Source: YouTube | @cbsboston

Despite advances in technology, the excitement of sending and receiving letters remains timeless. Imagine the surprise of receiving a letter from nearly seven decades ago. This dream became a reality in 2021 for Angelina Gonsalves from Woburn, Massachusetts. She received a letter written by her husband, John Gonsalves, in 1945. John, a World War II soldier stationed in Germany, had sent the letter to his mother. It never reached her, but 76 years later, the USPS finally delivered it to Angelina, reports CBS Boston.

Representative Image Source: Pexels | Suzy Hazelwood
Representative Image Source: Pexels | Suzy Hazelwood

Gonsalves, an American army Sergeant, was 22 years old when he wrote this letter to his mother on December 6, 1945, from Germany, where he was stationed. His son Brian Gonsalves shared a glimpse of the letter on his Facebook page. "Dear, Mom. Received another letter from you today and was happy to hear that everything is okay. As for myself, I'm fine and getting along okay. But as far as the food, it's pretty lousy most of the time," the letter reads. He mentioned the "lousy" food and snowy weather and expressed hope of returning home soon. Sending regards to his kin, he reassured: "I'll be seeing you soon, I hope. Love and kisses, Your son, Johnny."


The reason behind the postal mishap is still unknown. Angelina also received a letter from Steven Stowell of the United States Postal Service that read, "We are aware of the passing of your husband in 2015 (our condolences). As his next-of-kin, this letter now passes to you. We are uncertain where this letter has been for the past seven-plus decades, but it arrived at our facility approximately six weeks ago." The USPS prioritized the letter's delivery considering its "age and significance to their family history."


The American soldier met his wife Angelina in Massachusetts after his service in the army was over. The couple married in 1953 and spent over six decades together until Gonsalves passed away in 2015. Angelina did not know much about his time in World War II, and this letter overwhelmed her. "It sounded just like Johnny. It was a weird feeling—like he was standing there, reading it to me. I smiled when I saw his beautiful handwriting. I always loved how he wrote his E's," the 89-year-old told The Washinton Post.

"It might be 76 years late, but to us, it's perfect timing. I can picture my dad writing that letter to his mom, hoping he would soon be coming home to see her. Although it never made it to his mom, it made it to mine. And we've all been on an amazing little journey because of it," Brian told the outlet. Since the USPS delivered Gonsalves' letter on December 9, 2021, it was a wholesome Christmas surprise for his wife. "It was just a funny feeling, he was around us at Christmas time. One of his favorite times of the year," she told CBS News


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