The Day the Crabs Fled and Other Yarns

My Grandfather enlisted in the Marine Corp in 1939. He arrived at Pearl Harbor December 6, 1941. He not only survived the following day December, 7, 1941, he survived during the entire war in the Pacific. He separated from the Marines at the end of WWII and was recalled again in during the Korean War. I lived with him and my Grandmother on and off while growing up, they were the closest

My Grandfather (left)

My Grandfather (left)

thing to a mother and father that I ever experienced. I always thought his war stories were “stories” like the John Wayne movies he forced me to watch. I never understood that his wild stories of bombs going off on beaches and thousands of crabs coming in from the sea were anything more than adventures made up to entertain a little girl who loved to hear her Grandfather talk and was easily impressed. I understand now that a lot of those narratives were tales of him losing his buddies, of choices made that meant life or death. Now that he is many years gone, I get it. I know that to my older cousins he is a hero because of his medals and service records. He is a smell to me, a sound, and a story. I miss him.


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