Bill Goodall's Diaries: 1941/1945 
 1 December 1941 to 8 December 1941

After lunch we were driven to the Football Stadium for the big event of the day between Auburn and Clemson (S Carolina). The game was preceded by a mass display by the Auburn OTC and at half-time a marvellous drill team from Clemson performed to a hushed crowd of about 15,000. Before the game the announcer welcomed the few RAF cadets who were present and this was warmly applauded. We all enjoyed the game itself in spite of our ignorance of American Football rules and as Auburn won comfortably by 28-7, everyone was happy.
After the game we were almost mobbed by kind people anxious to meet us and one lady who left Manchester 20 years ago burst into tears while talking to me. The Wrights and the Sargents took us to a cocktail party which was the first of several we went to during the evening apart from dinner at the Sargents. At all these homes we were received with the utmost kindness.
We were up early on Sunday morning and Mr Wright took us for a drive round the neighbourhood finishing at his Bank - the First National Bank of Auburn of which he is the President. This is an attractive new building opened just a month ago and we were shown the safe with packets of dollar bills. Then it was back to the Wrights for lunch a small affair of 15 people served informally in buffet style after which we returned to Camp where we had to report by 2.45 pm. It is difficult to express adequately our appreciation of the kindness shown to us by the Wrights and Sargents.
One feature of life in these parts concerns domestic service which is all done by negroes for low wages such as five dollars a week - they are well treated and seem content but we are in no position to make any judgements.

Thursday, 8 December 1941. Our recent classes have been on the American Constitution and Customs & Courtesies which seem very far removed from flying. We have been playing a lot of volley ball which is new to us and very enjoyable.
Last weekend Alec, Charles and I were again invited to Auburn. We hitch-hiked from Montgomery and arrived about 4 o'clock on Saturday afternoon after which the Wrights drove us to Columbus, Georgia, where we spent the evening with their friends Eleanor and Charles Rush.
We were taken by Mr Wright (Monk) to a church service held in a most informal manner under Methodist auspices. We were introduced to the congregation and each asked to stand and say a few words which was a trying situation especially for me as I was called on first with no warning whatever. However we got through it fairly well and were politely clapped which seemed strange at a religious meeting.
On our way back through the town we were literally besieged by the kind people of Auburn who wanted to shake us by the hand and give us words of welcome; it is difficult to describe the stir which the RAF uniform creates in Auburn where everyone seems to be 100% for Britain.
Today we had a further physical exam in order to compare our fitness with our condition on arrival - I am still 5ft 9in and 11stone 8lbs with a figure described as stocky with good musculature. We have again been subjected to a lot of rifle drill as a visit is expected tomorrow from the Commandant of West Point.


© 1995 William Motion Goodall & Ian William Goodall 

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