Navy Dads

Seeking Information on Acceptable Forms of Letters to My Recruit

Hello, I am fairly new to and have been looking for information on what is acceptable by the US Navy as it pertains to the letters my family and I will be sending to my daughter.  

She just shipped out yesterday afternoon and after speaking to a lot of helpful members, having this information at my hands has greatly helped with the emotions and questions I seem to have.  One of the issues I am having at the moment is, I am wondering if I am allowed to type my letters to my daughter or if they have to be hand written.  As strange as this might sound, after writing for over 10 plus hours on my shift for the past 16 years, my handwriting tends to go south after the first paragraph.

I have read on some of the posts that other parents have attached newspaper clippings and photographs to their letters, but am truly confused now.  I was told the letters had to be in a standard size envelope, not the legal size and could not contain anything other than the letter itself.  Further more when addressing the outside of the envelopes, we were told to do it a certain way each and every time or else or daughter would be disciplined with extra PT, etc..

Can anyone help me with this topic of question please??   

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We typed all of our letters to our son when in boot camp. Really typing or hand writing doesn't matter. As far as pictures of newspaper clippings, it is wise to photocopy them on the back of or into your letters. Just keep in mind that storage space is VERY limited to them. Less is more!

I also read somewhere that less pictures of girl friends, mom and dad help curb the home sickness a little bit. Seems like they all go through it some.


You can even send cards, just no glitter, and no musical cards.  Envelopes do not need to be plain white, any color will do as long as they are not over-sized.  

1) the Navy does not censor mail 2) the Navy does not have time to watch over your sailors while they read their mail 3) the Navy does not care whether the contents are in cursive or are typed 4) glitter is out as it creates a mess that has to be cleaned up 5) no musical cards as they are a distraction and tend to be bulkier than regular mail 6) they have VERY LITTLE SPACE hence the flat envelope rule and the no over-sized envelopes

Chris Timme said:

With the information Paul had sent to me in a previous post, I was able to find this:
Q. What can I send my recruit in the mail?
A. Because space is limited in the barracks, recruits may receive letters and small photographs only. Please do not send your recruit packages of civilian clothing, toiletries, food items, etc. as they will not be permitted to keep them.

This answers half of my question and if anyone else has typed letters to their sailor, please let me know it that was acceptable.

Thank you in advance and I hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving Holiday!!  this is a great way to send letters to recruits and stationed military   

My son asked me to quit writing due to space, I was sending a couple of letters a week. But there were other family writing also. I sent a pre paid postage bulk mailer and he was able to put all them in it and mail it home to free up space. He said they have a space about the size of a shoebox for all personal and hygiene items.

This is what a rack looks like at Great Lakes (and on ships).  That box looking area to the right is their personal drawer, and that is all the space they have to store letters and pictures.  Sending something for them to mail letters back home to keep is a great idea.  

That is a visiting officer (Tunisia I think) checking out how out boot camp is run, but it is indeed at Great Lakes.  

Thanks for sharing this Margaret. Picture is worth a thousand words.

Actual shipboard berthing area:

New berthing being installed in a carrier a few years ago:

Instructing new arrivals at RTC how to organize their rack: 

Yeah I had heard the space on a ship was smaller... wow.

They get a locker on the ship too, for hanging uniforms, but no, it is not much space at all.

John Alan DeMarco said:

Yeah I had heard the space on a ship was smaller... wow.

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