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To the People of the United States
Just seven years ago, (on February 4, 1941), the USO was incorporated "to aid in the war and defense program of the United States and its allies by serving the religious, spiritual welfare and educational needs of the men and women in the armed forces and defense industries, and in general to contribute to the maintenance of morale in American communities.'
Growing out of the human concern and patriotic desire of its member agencies to render a united though separately distinctive service in a great national emergency, the USO became both a symbol of a nation's care for its sons and daughters in uniform and a principal channel for an unprecedented civilian participation in a total war effort.
In seven years the USO has exercised a fiduciary trusteeship involving $236,000,000 voluntarily and gladly contributed by countless individuals in every county, town and hamlet in the United States and thousands of men in uniform stationed throughout the world. This money has been translated into a billion and a half recorded services -- and millions more never tallied.
While the end of the war has not brought with it the end of an emergency for any nation; and while the times are still rife with human peril and human need, still the USO has discharged its mission, fulfilled its original purpose and ended its task. An official and complete history of USO has already been written and, together with pertinent documents and significant records, it will be filed permanently in the Library of Congress. The drama of the enterprise has been recorded in the book by Julia Carson, "Home Away From Home.'
It is now appropriate to render a simple but complete factual accounting to our contributing and participating public. That is the purpose of this report.
January 9, 1948
L.F. Kimball, President, United Service Organizations, Inc.
World War 1939-1945, United Service Organizations
United Service Organizations, "Operation USO: report of the President, February 4, 1941-January 9, 1948" (1948). Regimental Histories. 149.
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