The following is a true story that took place during WWII:
Dan and Clara were a young couple who met in the years before WWII. When Clara was only 16-years-old, still in high school, Dan proposed and they were soon married.
After graduating high school and attending a semester of college, WWII broke out and the young couple realized they would soon be separated by the war. Dan was eligible for the draft and it wouldn’t be long until his number was called.
Given the choice between enlisting in the Army or the Navy, Dan chose the Navy, saying, “I knew that I didn’t want to sleep on the ground. I wanted a bed, whether wet or dry.”
He soon found himself serving on board a small destroyer escort ship in the Pacific theater of WWII, thousands of miles from his wife Clara. They kept in touch by exchanging letters, but sometimes it was weeks in-between mail deliveries.
During one mail delivery the plane carrying Clara’s letter to Dan was shot down by Japanese fighters and thousands of letters were dumped into the ocean. Luckily some of the mailbags were recovered, including the one carrying Clara’s letter to Dan.
When Dan opened the wrinkled, stained letter he found inside a picture Clara had sent. Through the ink stains Clara’s beautiful smile was still visible, a miracle that kept Dan’s hopes and love alive.
Dan made it safely through WWII and was present in Yokohama Harbor during the signing of the treaty that marked the Japanese surrender. He and Clara are still happily married and in their 90s.
(Image courtesy of Dan and Clara)