“Hard work and skill will be noticed, even in the least suspecting places”
“I joined the 9th airborne in 1945 as an eager 18 year old, and parachuted into Nagasaki 2 weeks after the atomic bomb was dropped with a detachment to bring medical aid and assist with recovery. I was folded into the Marine group that was stationed there, and with my past experience working on cars, I was put in charge of the small motor pool at the base.
One day, while I was out driving on a delivery from the base, I came up on a Japanese man standing in the middle of the road in a full formal western suit. He flagged me down to help him, and pointed over to the side of the road where his car had run off into a rice paddy and his chauffeur was trying to get it out. Incredibly, the man spoke flawless english and asked if I could go get help. I looked at the situation, laid out some stakes I had in my jeep behind his car, hooked up a tow strap, and pulled him out.
He was amazed and thankful, and asked to ride with me in the jeep back into town. He explained that he was Wananabe Mitsubishi, the head of the Mitsubishi motor company at the time. He asked if I was an officer, and how old I was. when I explained I was only a noncommissioned 18 year old, he remarked “My God! No wonder we lost the war.”
A few weeks later, a phone call came from occupation headquarters in Tokyo that a plane was flying down to pick me up and bring me back to work in the motor pool there. Apparently, Mr Mitsubishi had got to know one of the US generals, and highly recommended a young man he had met down in Nagasaki.”
- Bill - Lincoln, CA