Story from another generation, another war

Published 6:00 am Friday, December 31, 2010

To the Editor:

In early World War II, I was 9 or 10, living at South Quay, about five miles south of Franklin.

One morning, a group of blue Navy planes appeared, dove toward our house, and skimming the trees, came at us and then flared away with a great roar. Then they came back again.

I recognized them as torpedo planes (boys studied our warplanes and built models in those days) and they were making training runs on our house.

They returned several times in the following days and then, on their last day with us, they circled while the crews waved goodbye. We all waved as we did each day, and we were proud to be a part of their training.

Much later we found they had all been lost at the Battle of Midway in the Pacific and only one crewmember, I believe, survived. They had asked so little of us, and we had asked everything of them.

This is not a comment on anyone’s attitude toward the Navy’s use of Franklin’s airfield. It is simply a true story about another time, another war and another generation.

Joe Stutts