Tomorrow is Memorial Day. I want to tell you about a 20 year old U.S. Marine who was fighting for his country in April 1945 on Okinawa, a long slender island a few hundred miles south of Japan that was being seized by an American armada as a staging point for the expected invasion of Japan to end WWII.
The Marine was a radioman and he was atop a ridge line in the pelting rain of an electrical storm, transmitting coordinates to offshore ships for their fire control. Suddenly there was a tremendous noise and he was stunned and momentarily lost the ability to move.
"I remember looking down and seeing sparks arcing between the radio and my fingertips," he said decades later. Lightning had struck his radio's fully extended antenna.
When his senses returned he checked himself out, determined that he was uninjured, got up and ambled about for a few minutes until his stupor wore off and then went back to work transmitting coordinates in the thunderstorm. That was one of the few stories that Marine ever told about the grim Pacific War.
The Marine was my Dad, who passed away in 1986 when I was in my early thirties. I still miss him terribly.