In 1944, the U.S. was trying to put a dent in Japan’s communication network, and they discovered an island with radio towers on it several hundred miles from Tokyo. They tried time and time again to bomb the towers, but Japan kept fighting them off with anti-aircraft guns. Back to our young man who at this point had been serving for two years. He and several other pilots were asked to give the mission a shot to take down the radio towers. They knew what happened to most of the other pilots who tried, but of course they were patriots and wanted to do their part.
They flew in around 8,000 feet and then spotted the island. He had to get the plane to about 3,000 feet to have a shot at hitting the targets and on the way down their plane was hit. He saw he had a problem with one of the wings, but he told the two men with him that he was going in anyway. Miraculously he hit both targets and then flew off over the ocean. He tried to get them as far away from the enemy as possible before having everyone eject from the aircraft. Finally, it was time and he floated from his parachute into the water. Once again, a miracle occurred, as a life raft was released from the plane and landed about 15 feet from him. It was one of those God moments.
He looked around for his men, but they were nowhere to be found. He also saw where the Japanese were sending boats into the water to pick up pilots who had ejected (there were eight total that got picked up by our enemy). He used his hands to paddle for about two hours to not be seen by the Japanese. Then all of a sudden, he saw a periscope in the water and then it surfaced. It was American and he was saved. He found out later that his two friends on the aircraft had died. One never made it out of the plane and the other had a problem when he ejected with his chute.
By now you might have figured out that I’m writing about President George H. Bush. The last American hero we’ve had in office. When he was 80 years old someone contacted him that he had information on what happened to the eight pilots who were captured. Certain people in our military knew what happened as everything came out in a military tribunal about the atrocities they suffered. The commander of the island had sadistic ideas and he told his men to eat the Americans. A few were killed and then eaten while some had pieces taken off (like their thigh), while they were still alive and then they finally bled out. The military was trying to spare the families from knowing about it but after all these years, a transcript from the trial was found and word got out. As you can imagine, Japan didn’t want this story out either.
Here's to the men who gave everything they had for their country. Some of the Japanese soldiers who testified, mentioned the bravery of our men. A lot of young people today, couldn’t handle such situations. The men and women back then were truly the greatest generation. I owe them everything.