Sunday, October 31, 2004


Happy Halloween from the Pacific, 1945

Hi all,
My 82-year-old Uncle Mac (Lt. Col. Heath L. "Mac" McMeans, USMCR, ret.) sent me an email message containing such a perfect Halloween-related "sea story," that I have to share.
Mac's experience didn't actually take place on Halloween, but it's certainly appropriate for October 31.
His story follows:

I have just finished reading a thriller horror book by Michael Crichton entitled PREY. He wrote Jurassic Park. It is about nanotechnology, artificial intelligence, etc., the latest craze in the scientific field. It is the scariest book, to me, I have read since I read Dracula by Bram Stoker.
And let me tell you the story about reading that.
It was in 1945 and I was a Marine 2nd lieutenant on an LST headed for the invasion of Japan.
I found a copy of Dracula in the wardroom, and having nothing else to do except watch the Dolphins race the ship, I went to my quarters, which I shared with a Navy Lt. JG [Junior Grade]. He was about two weeks senior to me, so I, of course, got the top bunk.
Anyway, I settled down to a long night of heavy reading. All that could be heard was the hum of the ship and men moving about on the steel deck two feet over my head.
I was at the part where Dracula was doing his thing, and bats were flying around, sucking blood, when, someone dropped a wrench or something on the deck. The hair on my neck was already standing up and I sat straight up in the bunk, banging my head on a steel beam. Which hurt like hell. I guess it was the deep-down thought of being shot at and maybe killed that caused such a reaction. It really almost scared the living you-know-what out of me.
I have not read Dracula ever again. I was ashamed of myself. Here I was, a 2nd lieutenant fresh out of OCS going to fight those Japanese S.O.B.'s, and just think, I let book of fiction scare me like that.
I felt like jumping ship in the middle of the Pacific."

Anyway, Mac's is a great story.
Oh, for my own memory of a particular Halloween - nearly 40-years-ago - check out Halloween Dreams.

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