Friday April 01, 2011
Quote of the Day
“For airmen [in the Pacific Theater in WWII], the risks were impossible to shrug off. The dead weren't numbers on a page. They were their roommates, their drinking buddies, the crew that had been flying off their wing ten seconds ago. Men didn't go one by one. A quarter of the barracks were lost at once. There were rarely funerals, for there were rarely bodies. Men were just gone, and that was the end of it. ...
”In the early days of 1943, as men died one after another, every man dealt with the losses in a different way. Somewhere along the way, a ritual sprang up. If a man didn't return, the others would open his foot-locker, take out his liquor, and have a drink in his honor. In a war without funerals, it was the best they could do.“
—pp. 89-90 of ”Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption" by Laura Hillenbrand