He served aboard USS Enterprise (CV-6) during WWII, in the Pacific Theater. Enterprise (CV-6) was the most decorated American Warship of the war.
With that said; Memorial Day is here again and I thought long and hard about what I wanted to say to express my deep respect and gratitude to those who gave their all, whether they survived or not, so I decided to select a story which conveyed not just the pure warrior spirit of our fighting men, but also the persistant morbid humor they exhibit in the face of unspeakable adversity.
Here it is:
One legendary Marine of this time was a remarkable American named Lieutenant General Lewis Burwell "Chesty" Puller. Chesty was a colonel at the time, commanding Marines at the Battle of Chosin Reservoir and there were rumors of a massive invasion of Chinese troops into the Korean conflict. Chesty was trying to confirm the number involved and here is how he established some firm data:
A ROK (Republic of Korea) commander, whose unit was fighting along with the Marines, called legendary Marine (at the time, Colonel) Lewis "Chesty" Puller to report a major Chinese attack in his sector. "How many Chinese are attacking you?" asked Puller.
"Many, many Chinese!" replied the excited Korean officer. Puller asked for another count and got the same answer, "Many, many Chinese!"
"Damn it!" swore Puller, "Put my Marine Liaison Officer on the radio." In a minute, an American voice came over the air: "Yes sir?" "Lieutenant," growled Chesty, "exactly how many Chinese you got up there?" "Colonel, we got a whole shitload of Chinese up here!"
"Thank God," exclaimed Puller, "At least there's someone up there who knows how to count."