The Chocolate Pilot
12 Tons of Candy Sent
Operation Little Vittles Going Over Big; 11,000 Yards of Linen for Handkerchiefs Arrive
Chicopee, Nov. 21 -- "Operation Little Vittles," with its United States capital in the Grape St. fire station here, has shipped a total of 12 tons of candy and 3600 candy chutes to Lt. Gail Halverson, one of the MATS pilots on the Berlin Airlift who drop the gifts to kids in Berlin. Since the operation started, these pilots have extended their activities, because of the spontaneous response of American school children, to visit to Berlin hospitals and welfare homes.
Wilfred B. Thivierge, secretary to mayor Edward O. Bourbeau, the adult guide of Chicopee school children, reported that the 11,000 yards of cloth promised by the Budd Mfg. Co., of Philadelphia, has arrived. It is a high grade Irish linen, all cut to handkerchief size. To the surprise of the mayor's secretary, it is actually that many engineering tracings that are obsolete. Because the cloth is still in its starched form, it will be laundered by the Holgate Laundry of Fairview without charge. "If the Russians find any they will think we are sending them industrial secrets," Thivierge said, "for the black water proof ink drawings probably won't wash out."
From the Life Saver Corp. at Port Chester, N.Y., has come 1200 rolls of life savers, and the Springfield Turnverin Society has added 800 chocolate bars. But in spite of the large number of gifts, it was reported that the supply of candy is now falling short of the needs of Lt. Halverson and his comrades of the Airlift.
Thivierge said that he has begun to receive requests for instructions on how to assist from numerous church groups throughout the country and the task of keeping abreast of the correspondence is increasingly hard Besides several coast to coast broadcasts of the "Little Vittles" undertaking, many of the radio entertainers are beginning to pick up the idea and include mention of it in their script.
"We need more cash to meet air freight costs and we need more candy," Thivierge said.