The heat of the parking garage enveloped the Marines. Lance Corporal Stevenson Swinton worked his biceps, his triceps, his tapezius, his core. Sweat dropped like shell casings from a M240. Other lance corporals and corporals operated in similar fashion. Every move remained swift and precise. The idea was to get buff, sure. But the real reason behind all of this lifting, squatting, pressing, and yes sweating was to be the best Body Bearers. Swinton dropped the two hundred and twenty five pound bar on the bench press. He looked up at his platoon guide. A smirk found its way onto his face.
“When I first got here,” Sergeant Pella Mansley said, “I thought that I was the hotness. My CO punched me in the chest.” The words chilled Lance Corporal Chorus Lessing like frost on a tombstone.
"That Others May Live" that is the motto of the United States Air Force Pararescue Team. These guys are bad MFs who won't stop until the mission is done and lives have been saved. They are without a doubt the most elite Special Forces Unit in the Nation and perhaps the world.
The building looked like any office space. Instead of cubicles, just a few desks and computers occupied the area. The corporals, Cortland Carras and Samantha Hillinger sniggered. Only to themselves, however. They dared not let the gunny or staff sergeant see them laughing at the uniform of the Marine that outranked all of them in the room. Master Sergeant Kent Kipton wore the same digiprint camouflage uniform as the others. He pressed it and affixed his insignia in the proper places. The only thing that caught the attention of the corporals was the master sergeant’s sleeves. They looked like two flat monster truck tires rolled up just past his elbow. They looked like two soggy donuts approaching his upper arm.
My torn coat flaps in the vicious breeze as I walk slowly back home, my four year old brother running and skipping ahead, oblivious to our suffering. Pain shoots through my empty belly as I jolt and shake with each jagged step. My skin feels burnt, despite the cold, as I stride to what I humbly call my home. Disappointment reddens my face every time I walk the broken garden path to my front door. The door is dull and weathered, the lock all but broken. My sunken eyes blur as I notice the torn curtains and empty closets. I check for letters then hurry inside to start dinner for my little brother. My father is in the army. He will not be back for supper. I pour water into an iron pot and open the pantry door. I stare at the same thing I stare at every day. Nothing. I stifle a sob, not wanting the carefree nature of my brother to be corrupted by my hopelessness. My mother is dead. She was shot protecting the daughter of two complete strangers. The fruits of a country too long at war. She will not be home for supper.
In the front hallway of Mom's house are a set of photos, taken on an Air Force base, portraying a dashing man in uniform and the fighter plane behind him.
Today I had just seen the movie Midway and I have to say that it was such a good movie. I mean, it shows about another part of the Second World War that happened between the US and Japan. The battle that happened there I didn’t even remember learning about in school. All I remember about is Pearl Harbor and how horrific it was and how many people had lost their lives that day and it was completely sad. I mean, many people are still buried in the Arizona till this day since there wasn’t any way that they could get out of there.
In 1944, Flying Officer David "Gnat" Royce, RCAF, is gambling that his last few missions over Germany will be uneventful ones. But no battle plan ever survives contact with the enemy...