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Dedicated to Marci
Submitted by Jack
I first saw Steven at the luau at the Ala Moana, right on Waikiki Beach in Oahu, Hawaii. I was a stewardess on a layover and Stevie was a Marine Aviation Lieutenant. He was different from any man I'd ever seen: tall, the blackest hair I'd ever met, and a kind, gentle manner I'd never seen in a man that was so obviously masculine!
After watching the show - the primitive drums pounding in our ears, we took a walk on the beach. He shyly took my hand and we sat down to watch the waves banging into the shore, over and over! Diamond head was a dark shadow and I felt a peace in my heart I'd never felt before.
We talked of our backgrounds; both of us wanting to desperately establish a connection. I spoke of my life growing up on a wheat farm west of Goodland, Kansas, and going to college at Kansas State. Stevie said mysterious words for a farm girl: the wonder of a place called Brooklyn, the magic of Coney Island; it seemed so strange to a Kansas farm girl!
We did kiss as he walked me back to the hotel; a shy kiss from a boy in a man's uniform! He gave me all the information about how to get hold of him; he asked me to dinner the next night.
I slept little… love was new to me. I dreamed of a wonderful life in a world unknown to me. I tossed; I turned. I woke in the early dawn thinking of Stevie, of the dinner to come that night! Was I to find love?
I got out of bed early; I sat on the patio sipping the fresh orange juice. Life held such promises! The sun was rising, a sun of such promise! A promise of the love I wanted; a promise of children and a small house I could call my own.
There was a sudden roaring; planes with ominous markings: a red sun, marked with death! From the north they came – they wheeled and turned west. They passed over the tourist area like angry wasps! I knew instinctively where they were headed: Pearl! A few minutes later I could see the smoke rising; the booming of the bombs and torpedoes reverberating, over and over. A day of infamy; a horror never know before.
Dear Mr. and Mrs. Martin,
I met your son a couple of days ago. You know by now of the vicious attack on Hawaii; of how Steven so gallantly died defending our country!
I met Steven… he asked me to call him Stevie. He was a nice young man, so polite, so shy! I knew him but for a few hours; hours given as a gift to me.
He was a fine young man – you should be so proud!
Steven died as a hero – and my dreams died with him!