The Acknowledgement

20131019-215941.jpg[map of the 853rd engineer’s station and activities in India]

His opening remark:
“My brother said
New Zealand girls
are more attractive
than Australians”

I’m not sure how
I’m meant to respond,
but he moves on quickly
to the question he
really needs to ask:
“Have you ever
been to India?”

He’s Denver born,
Chico residing,
and some ninety
years old.

I reply positively in
the negative, and one
night reveals a lifetime:

WWII choice –
Air Force not offered,
so Army or Navy.
Army – negative –
foxhole digging,
so, Navy?

“But, I’m a small guy,
I couldn’t risk
being put on a
sub!”
Army it was..

Twenty nine days at
sea, then the forty
and eight trains
(40 men or 8 horses)
to Chabua, India,
where the
853rd engineers
built bridges in
Assam valley.

No holiday,
but took day
trips on military
flights to
wherever..

War ended – he
was late home,
as he’d been a
replacement.

Total time: 26 months.

All I can do is acknowledge.

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