Revelations in the Dark

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Revelations in the Dark

Growing up in the late 20th century has separated me from feelings of fear and woe, which are closely tied together with war. In my lifetime, the United States has come closest to an extended conflict of the same caliber as World War II on only two occasions. These occasions would, of course, be the Persian Gulf War and the September 11th attacks. Knowing this, it is obvious that I won't be able to fully express how one feels during times of extended conflict. Times where death seems imminent and victory far away are all but unknown to me. It is safe to say that I grew up in a relatively peaceful time, though what I do know of war is far too dark. War is a frenzy of pain that no one should ever have to face. Through history lessons, historically accurate movies/documentaries, and what I've witnessed from the conflicts in my time have taught me a great deal about what war really is. However, only from those directly involved in an extended conflict will ever truly be able to get a grasp on what war is.

Chester Hornback entered into the U.S. military in March of 1945. He was drafted despite being turned down by the Air Force in 1935 for being too short and lightweight. At the time he weighed in at only 128 pounds. And so near the end of World War II Hornback entered into the army and left his wife at home. After basic training he was placed into a tank destroyer unit. At the time it was normal practice for everyone inside a tank to open their mouths while the tank fired so that the pressure on their ears would be relieved. However, during a training exercise Hornback forgot to open his mouth. His ears bled and his hearing was damaged forever. Unfortunately for him, not so much that he would be given a discharge from service.

In September of 1945 Hornback arrived in Okinawa, an island off the coast of Japan. He would describe it as a dreadful place. It would rain almost everyday, but it would never get cold. Okinawa is hot much like California only with far more humidity. Native to this weather was a tropical landscape, which covered the small island. Of course, Okinawa wasn't a deserted isle by any means. It was actually a very functioning home to many, but most of their homes were reduced to rubble during the massive fighting between U.

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