Joyanna Adams

Nobody's Opinion

Nobody Remembers Uncle Robert

Nobody Remembers

Today…I saw my brother cry…for the first angel

He’s 65, so you know it’s been a long time coming.

And it was about a man who neither one of use ever knew: Our uncle Robert. I have always known that my father’s oldest brother was killed at sea, but that was it. Lots of men were killed in WWII, but our parents, when they came home from the war, never talked about it. Never. And my father never talked about his older brother except one time, after his stroke, when he was lying in bed in a hospital, I asked him how his nose got broken.

“My older brother broke it. ” he said.

“Why?” I said.

“I don’t know, he just liked to hit me in the nose.” and then he laughed. In fact, Robert, my father’s older brother, broke my dad nose not once, not twice, but three times.  They were raised on the streets …poor kids in downtown St. Louis. Back then, fighting was a daily event.

When the war came both my father and his older brother joined because there wasn’t enough money to feed them at home.

cargo ship

cargo ship

But back to the story…my brother said that Robert was in the navy, and worked on a supply ship. He had joined in January, 1942, and wrote a letter to his mother saying,  “Don’t worry mom, we won’t see much fighting, I’ll be fine. “ Basically a dear sweet letter from a son to his mother.

Now my brother said, that sometime in March, just a few months later that same year, this American cargo ship that Robert was on, came upon a mighty Japanese warship, which had bigger and longer guns. The cargo ship my uncle was on didn’t have many guns at all, so the Captain of the ship told the men that day. “We can’t beat them…but we CAN sink them.”

Evidently, all the men on board agreed. They would sacrifice their lives to sink the Japanese warship.

And so, the Captain rammed his cargo ship into the Japanese boat and sank it.

It wasn’t really reported in the news. It was just another battle in the universe of many.

My uncle died a hero on that ship, and the thought of all those brave men, fighting to the end…made my brother burst out in tears with pride and sorrow…which of course made me cry.

And then he finished the story.

Japanese Battle Ship

Japanese Battle Ship

My grandmother got a box telling her that her son had been killed…but three days later.. She got the letter he wrote in January.

I know my brother wasn’t crying about uncle Robert…not really. Although he is the spit image of him…he looks more like Robert than my dad…but he was crying for the fact that THAT kind of bravery did not make a bit of difference in the America we live in today.

Men are noble, and still sacrifice their labors, their work, their pain, and for what?

Obama is President. OMG. — and the next President might be a maniacal  woman, and what the HELL happened? What did all those lives sacrificed and lost for this great American country that we all loved…what the hell was it all for?

My brother and I both, feeling the pain of our country dying. Our father’s generation…gone.

John Wayne is dead. They want to replace him with some fluffy pajama boy.

And I can’t think of a line to end this with except to say-…I couldn’t love my brother more than I did tonight.



April 10, 2016 - Posted by | American History |


  1. Amen, Joyanna.


    Comment by madmemere | April 11, 2016 | Reply

  2. A poignant story, Joy. Thanks for sharing it.


    Comment by snopercod | April 10, 2016 | Reply

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