Well here in Arizona the Governor decreed that all the flags be put at half mast for “A DAY THAT WILL LIVE IN INFAMY!”
On December 7th, 1941, my grandmother, Ruth O’Day Morton Croft, my step-grandfather, Airplane Mechanic Theodore Teddy Croft, and my father and uncle, were all stationed at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, on that fateful day.
My grandmother had already divorced my grandfather mustang Commander Gerard T. Morton, Sr., calling a “right egomaniacal bastard”, which he was, and had remarried Teddy Croft.
That morning my father and uncle played hooky from church to go fishing, and they saw the Japanese Zeroes flying right over their heads. They waved, and they said the pilots waved back at them and even waggled their wings, smiling, as they headed to destroy the tightly deployed US fleet.
Wondering what the heck was going on, they ran up to the top of a hill, and were later featured on the cover of LIFE MAGAZINE and the only two eye-witnesses who saw the entire attack from beginning to end.
As the USS ARIZONA was attacked, with no fear and no concern for his own life, Teddy Croft rushed into the burning ship, and held up a bulk head with his great strength, allowing dozens of men to escape, only to be killed as the ship exploded around him and sank. He was awarded a posthumous medal for heroism, which I used to have, but has now been lost in time. I went to go visit the now national memorial and rub my hands over the plaque that recorded his heroism as one of the dead.
My father, Captain Gerard T. Morton, Jr. went on to become a Naval Aviator and Ace decorated fighter pilot in Korea, and my Uncle Donny went on to become an Admiral, who then worked in Navel Intelligence.
So a commemoration of some events in history that my family were eyewitnesses to and affected the lives of my relatives, and all the world, forever.
Merry Christmas everyone. Hope to be free soon! Please keep praying.
Dr. Sean-David Morton