Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia on June 9, 1974 · Page 31
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Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia · Page 31

Charleston, West Virginia
Issue Date:
Sunday, June 9, 1974
Page 31
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3C -- Jun*9.1974 Sunday Gazette-Mail ~ ~ ~ ~ ~" Charlewn, Weit Virginia RICHARD LEE STROUT Proud Warriors WASHINGTON - At 10:30 p.m. 30 years ago, the loudspeaker bawls "All hands man your battle stations" and a bugle blows "General Quarters," and I jump out of my berth on the heavy cruiser USS Quincy, Capt. Senn commanding, give an embarrassed glance at the frightened young man in war correspondent's uniform looking, out at me from the mirror and say, "You fool, you damn fool, with a wife and family, what in hell are you doing here!" and go on up to the open bridge to observe The Longest Day. D-Day. June 5-6,1944. We are going to invade Normandy. A couple of hours before this the chaplain prayed for us. Out in the breeze or down in the engine room men bared their heads. I looked back toward England and wondered: Something marvelous was going on. All the world's ships were coming our way. Big ships; little ships; convoys, with barrage balloons tugging them ahead. British ships. Dutch ships. Free French ships. Their names mingled like a chant. The British names came down through history: The Black Prince, for instance, buddying up with the old battlewagons, Texas and Arkansas. One transport was the Susan B. Anthony. (Sunk within hours.) *. "ASK AND IT shall be given; seek and ye shall find," said the chaplain. We hoped it was so, and it was no time for doubts. "Our help is in the Lord . . . " Now it is midnight. The sky is overcast. Somewhere up there the moon is one night from being full. Once it glows out and casts us in full relief in a silvery patch. Our ship is flanked by shadowy destroyers. There are only dim red battle lights. Suddenly over in France there is a spurt of tracer bullets and a falling meteor that I suppose is really an airplane. I keep thinking of home, where they are finishing supper at 7, and getting ready for homework. We are probably all thinking the same thing. We talk in whispers. Here is a wonderful thing! We are on a dark sea moving at half speed toward history and here are little pinpricks of cheery light, bobbing discreetly on the surface -a mine-swept safety lane marked so that even a landsman could follow it. They give a wonderful emotional, release -- somebody has been here, somebody knows what we are doing, somebody has planned this. A sense of the immensity of this thing slowly grows. There is no harbor ahead so we are taking our harbors with us -- so-called Mulberries and Gooseberries, to be created by sinking old warships and merchant ships as jetties against rough weather. They are chugging out under their own power like the Black Prince and the Susan B. Anthony. We were briefed on this but we don't believe it. We will attack just about where William the Conqueror sailed for England in 1066. ft is 3 a.m.; it is 4 a.m. We are six miles off shore, off what will be called Utah Beach. By now the enemy must know what's up. Bombers roar overhead. Flares drop inland. I am so wrought up I do knee bends. A thousand youngsters are on board almost as inexperienced as I. It is pathetic to hear them ask my opinion. Everything's fine, I say. Now we wait three miles off shore. All nine guns point at the beach. 5:30 a.m. There are yellow streaks in the cloud cover. Now! -- The guns go off and the Quincy bounces. Dawn finds us on Germany's doormat like the morning milk bottle. »· I DON'T know much about battles. After an hour of this there is a certain sameness. First I am frightened and then bored and ashamed of both emotions. We are supposed to soften up shore batteries for the landing parties. At 6 a.m. we still bang away methodically, like a thunderbolt worked by clockwork. At 6:30 the landing craft hit the beaches. The immensity of sky and land dwarfs everything so that from here you have to hear the noise and strain at the binoculars to know a battle is going on. May be this is true of all battles. If you are in the middle you can't figure the score. A destroyer is hit, a mine explodes with a geyser higher than the National Press Building, a plane lays a smoke screen. A sound like milk cans is the shells being ejected from the 5-inch batteries. Our destroyers practically walk on the beach. A little French village with a spire nestles in the cliffs. And now runty little barges go ashore like a line of beetles. They are brave men aboard. Except for the luck of the draw I would be on one. I pick out a squarish little craft with a lace of foam in-front. It is like picking out a particular ant. What would I be doing now if 1 were aboard, instead of Ken Crawford of Newseek? Would I have the guts? God knows. The one I have picked reaches the beach, loses its foam, waddles up -- I can't see her but I bet the seasick GIs are glad to exchange horrors. Nine a.m., 10 a.m., noon. The cook has made a mistake. He thought yesterday was D-Day and served ice-cream and cake; now it's just beans. It is afternoon. I could sleep a week. I put on headphones in the communications room. A German broadcast denies any troops are ashore. They seem befuddled. We have attacked Dieppe and Dunkirk, they say. A BBC broadcast says we are winning. Cheers. Nobody here has any idea. Mostly it is a communications jargon: the sound of a battle: the parent voice crying out loudly and commandingly. Suddenly a quiet voice identifies itself. "I am pinned down," says the quiet voice. "I am between machine gun pillbox crossfire." Our radio leaves him. THE DRAMA is in that line of LCM's, ugliest craft ever built, so close to us I can almost see faces. I can see the burly skipper of the nearest and notice his arms are akimbo. He looks contemptuously at the USS Quincy staring us out of countenance. I bet he comes from the North River. I bet he is a tugboat captain. He sweeps the battle with an uncomplimentary eye. If he spoke he would have a Jersey accent and would take no back talk from nobody, see?--not from no warship, not from no Germans. We let go an eight-inch salvo over his right ear that must at least establish a feeling of mutual respect. About 11 that night, double summertime, begins a great droning. An unending line of bombers comes out of England each towing a paratroop glider. They are in single line formation, so many that they arch the sky from horizon to horizon. After the first batch comes a second, and as it passes flying high the first begins to return, without the gliders which have crash-landed. Paratroopers in silk webs are in hedges, treetops, steeples -- behind the lines. It is a cavalry charge and I have seen it. I am unable to speak. I look up, my eyes are wet. It is like a religious experience. This is my country doing this. I am doing this. That swine -- Hitler. I am so proud. The Meek May Not Want It There are millions of improve-yourself books on the market, including one named "The Shy Person's Book," by somebody named Claire Rayner, and I'd like to read that one but I'm too timid to go into the store and ask for it. I saw a little blurb on it somewhere. It was a modest item. It said merely, and rather coyly, if you are shy about meeting strangers, or handling waiters, or talking to the boss, or making love, perhaps, maybe, if you don't have anything better do do, you ought to take a sly peek at this book. »· IT SAID only that this Claire Rayner was one of those people who went through pain and torture when she had to assert herself, but she worked on it and gol over it, and now she's a star on the BBC. Well, I could use something, I swear I could. I tried to be a salesman one time, and it didn't work. Liberty magazine said I could earn my living (at the age of 12) if I just filled in this coupon, and I did, and they sent me five copies of Liberty, plus a canvas bag with a shoulder strap, and I went up to the square. I tried my best to eat my Adam's apple and say to the shoppers, "Get your Liberty right here, they're going fast, folks," or something like that, but nothing ever came out. I just stood there, holding a copy of Liberty over my na- Otherwise.. Tom Fesperman vel, apologetically stepping into doorways whenever anybody walked toward me. . Liberty stopped publication shortly after that, and I've always felt largely responsible for that. I've been around the country quite a bit, and my conclusion is that the people in New England are among those who have overcome shyness. I remember coming up to a big traffic circle in New Hampshire, where five or six roads went off like spokes of a wheel, and these New Englanders were driving around on this circle, endlessly, and I kept waiting for one of them to let me come into it, but they just stared at me aggressively, and I had to wait until they all had gone home to bed. *· IN NEW YORK City, I've held doors open for doormen. I've wilted before head waiters who, guarding 30 vacant tables, have said curtly. "We're full." Most of us are bashful, shy, skittish, self-conscious, afraid to tell jokes at parties, scared to get up and make proposals, and that's why we're not president or in the Cabinet or Congress or even big manufacturer or sales manager or vice president of promotion or head of a high-interest bank. All we can do is crouch here, our poor flickering candles under bushels, while all these egotists boldly go on running things to suit their own ends, making mush of the dollar, flouting laws, evading taxes, polluting the air, filling rivers with their waste, generally fouling up the earth so much that I'm not sure we, the meek, are going to want to inherit it. RALPH NADER Facing Legal Realities WASHINGTON - This August at the annual meeting of the American Bar Assn. .(ABA), the nation's establishment lawyers will witness an extraordinary three- hour program on injustices in the delivery of legal services and what can be done about them. Prominent on this program will be case studies of people who have .been victimized by the ills of the legal system. Plainly, this country's hoary lawyer .class is worried enough to bring such grim material to their meetings in Hawaii and face up to some realities. Let's hope they are defined to include the following: · *· REALITY No. 1 is that the millions of poor people receive very little legal representation to defend or advocate their rights, notwithstanding all the pompous touting given to the neighborhood legal services program and the older legal aid offices. These services are quantitatively two drops in the bucket. Also, political pressures have kept such advocacy, with few exceptions, from going a f t e r root causes and structures that breed violations and abuses. As a result, even court victories do little to affect or deter recurrent rounds of similar abuses to other similar victims. Instead of finding itself at a stage of expanding the federally supported poverty lawyer program, which now numbers a little over 2,000 lawyers nationwide, the bar has been weakly striving to save the program from being scuttled by Richard Nix-, on. His animosity^to the poverty lawyers program, especially when they challenge unjust agencies of government, is only exceeded by the generous quantity of legal aid which the taxpayer is providing him for his personal Watergate and related troubles. After three years of hassling the White House, members of Congress have completed a compromise bill which removes the legal services program from, the Office of Economic Opportunity and establishes it in a new but restricted, federally funded corporation controlled by the White House. Even though the White House literally wore down Sen. Nelson, Sen. Javits and Rep. Perkins to accept its terms,'Nixon may still veto the bill. None of this could have happened if the bar really used its muscle and backed up the firm statements of former ABA President Robert Meserve. · REALITY No. 2 is that most Americans are shut out of the legal system because of the expense and time needed to use it. Small claims courts were supposed to help solve this problem but they need simplification, decentralization into neighborhoods, and after work-hours service to begin to fill their promise. The ABA knows what has to be done here -- it's not that difficult -- yet it fails to make this a priority for real action. Prepaid legal services by lay groups, such as labor unions, could help hurdle this cost barrier. After unrelenting opposition to this idea by the organized bar, a Supreme Court decision opened the way in 1967. So now the ABA is trying to control dire^ly or indirectly the nature of these prepaid legal service plans to favor the most expensive and least efficient system. It is one thing to have the ABA express an opinion; it is quite another matter to say, through its disciplinary rules, that an alternative, the so-called closed panel of staff lawyers servicing a group's members, would involve these lawyers in unethical conduct. »· REALITY No. 3 is that state bar associations should scrap their minimum fee schedules because they are anticompeti- tive and provide collusive rationales for : lawyers telling clients that they have to charge such and such an amount or they would be acting unethically. This absurdity, which often takes the form of different county bar association minimum fee schedules in a single state, such as Connecticut, has helped spawn massive sales of "do-it-yourself" kits for divorce actions or books like "How to Form Your Own Corporation Without a Lawyer for Under $50." Andrew Hourigan Jr., a member of the ABA's Board of Governors, recently warned about this rampant "unauthorized practice of law" in the divorce area. He urged "more and better service" by lawyers. What he should have emphasized are ways to bring down the cost of these services for routine problems dramatically like competition, prepaid group practice, and the use of more paralegal professional services and systems to help people avoid lawyers altogether yet protect their interests or resolve their complaints. Come In... Register to win a $500 paid-up Frankenberger's Charge Account for Dad.. *~N --4*. 1/W ^ Bar'n'Bar-b-que gifts for Dad . . . the super chef. . . .Sli U^. Cook W Ca' jun Unique charcoal water smoker 49 95 A. Rediscovered ... a centuries old method of cooking meat over water that promises the best home-style smokehouse flavor under the sun. The fire is separated from the meat by water.. .steam and smoke, combine with the natural meat juices for moist tender cooking every time. Avocado, black or poppy red. 35" high. "Top of the line" Bar-b-que starter, tool set $ 18 Gift Boxed B. Stainless steel turner, fork and carving knife ... plus a 500 watt U.L. approved fire starter. Simple and safe ... no more bar-b-que starting mess. Steak branding iron C. Clever gift item for branding your steaks. Three sided, initialed with "R", "M" and "W" for that personalized touch. 2-bottle travel bar D. The original... 2 bottle carrier. Complete with glasses ... jiggers ... tongs and stirrers. Carrying case available in black or brown. Syphon soda master E. Two quart capacity syphon. Handsome blue, gold, ruby finish design fits in with any bar decor. Club soda for about a dime a quart. $ 17 $ 20 Outdoor thermometer F. Famous 18" Airguide thermometer for patio or backyard. Big-easy- to-read numerals. Attractive novelty for Dad. 50 Bar accessory set G. Novel attractive ceramic little golfer holds all the necessary bar utensils. 11" high. Great conversation piece. Six-pack cooler H. Heavy canvas carrying case with zipper closure. Keeps six 12 oz. size drinks cold for hours. Available in blue. 13 $ 15 $ 10 Men's Gifts--First Floor Mail or phone your order--Call Margaret Frank, Personal Shopper-- 346-0371 Frankenberger's, Box 2553, Charleston, WV 25329. Please send me Father's Day Gift Items as indicated: ITEM NO. Name Address Citv QUANTITY Please Include 3 COLOR % State Sales Tax TOTAL State 2 PRICE HP D Charge D Check DC.O.D. DM.O. Please add 1.00 handling charge for each order for delivery outside the state of West Virginia PARK FREE 2 HOURS, with purchase, at Community Parking Lot, corner of Virginia and Hale Streets

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