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336   Desmond Doss Typed Letter Signed  $200 $200 $220 1 You must login to place a bid.
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#336 - Desmond Doss Typed Letter Signed Estimate: $400+

TLS signed “Desmond T. Doss C.M.H.,” two pages, 8.5 x 11, October 2, 1997. Letter to Philip Tilton, recalling his various encounters with U.S. Presidents, in full: "Thank you for your letter and the Kennedy cover you sent. I'll tell you a little more about my association with President Kennedy. He did something that no other president ever did. You see, the Medal of Honor recipients are all invited to the inaugurations, and I was there for his inauguration. He invited all of the MOH recipients to a military reception where all of the top brass of the United States and other countries were present. One outstanding person from each branch of the military was chosen to be interviewed. The Medal of Honor Society chose me as the most outstanding recipient from World War II. The ones to be interviewed had to go ahead of the others. Lucy Jarvis, the reporter, took us into the White Hose and then out onto the lawn for the reception. In so doing, we passed the president’s office. Lucy went in and told the president we were there and he came out and shook hands with us. He asked me where I was from, etc. Then we went out onto the lawn where the interviews were to take place. President Kennedy and the top brass were very nice to us and all of them shook hands with us.

We were invited to the luncheon that day, and again I shook hands with the president. Because I had been the first to shake hands with Kennedy in his office, I chose to be last to speak to him when we saw him later that day. It gave me more time to talk to him. Altogether I shook hands and talked to President Kennedy four times that day. I have a picture on my wall of one of these times. I have another picture of President Kennedy on my living room wall. He said, ‘It’s not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country.’

Now speaking of President Truman, I felt he was a personal friend of mine. He was the president who presented me with the Congressional Medal of Honor. One evening when I was in Topeka, I was shown through the Truman Library. Saw his office and even ran my fingers up and down the piano keys of his piano. Later that evening I was privileged to go to his home. He had just returned from a trip, and his wife came to the door and told me he was too tired to see me. But he came to the door about that time and opened the door and told me to come right in. We visited for just a few minutes. President Truman remembered me on three different occasions when he was talking to many people. He told them he had given out more Medal of Honors than any other president. One was to a skinny little pharmacist’s mate from Georgia—the only conscientious objector he considered to be on the level. You know, I would never carry a gun nor work on God’s seventh-day Sabbath. But I wanted to serve my God and country as a medic. I told President Truman that God had protected me overseas as well as in the states. I still believe He did.

There is a book about my army experiences called, ‘The Unlikeliest Hero.’ It is now out of print. I have just a few left, and when they are gone, there will be no more. I haven’t pushed them at all because of that. But I would be willing to sell you one if you would like one. They are $12, autographed and postpaid. It has a picture of Truman presenting me with the MOH. I think I will send you a photo of that, too. I am making arrangements now for another book. I have a writer. Hopefully it may be out by next spring if it works out.

Now the last president I have talked to is President Bill Clinton. My wife and I were at the Medal of Honor convention in Little Rock, AR, just last week. President Clinton was also in Little Rock. One evening he came and talked to us, and we got to shake hands with him afterward. Next day we had a little time to look around and were directed to a World Market for sightseeing. While we were there, a few people started to gather outside the store in the back. We joined the people, and President Clinton came and shook hands with all of us again. It was interesting, and we enjoyed seeing him. I guess that is enough for this time. We hope you will like the experiences. God bless you.” In fine condition.

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