“Biggest news of the week here as everywhere was Mussolini's topple from power. Monday morning on the way out to physical exercise I happened to notice the news in a larger than usual headline on the St. Louis Globe-Democrat. CPO Lense in Phys ed at 0800 gave us some more details on Moose's - as he called him - fall. Maybe the end of the war will be hastened.”
-- Letter from my father, Cape Girardeau, Mo., to his family, Bloomington, Kans., Wednesday, July 28, 1943. "CPO" means "chief petty officer." On July 25, Mussolini, who had come to power in 1922, was discharged by the Fascist Council and King Victor Emmanuel III and put under arrest. He was replaced by Marshal Pietro Badoglio, who soon opened negotiations to surrender to Allied forces.
(Source: McNeill, A Democracy at War, 184-85)