Robert “Bobby” Jenkins had secured all his items in the trunk at the foot of his bed in the barracks of the naval base in Coronado, California. Jenkins served in the ROTC unit at North Carolina State University where he graduated just a few months ago. Jenkins had been interested in serving since hearing about his father’s experiences in World War II. In fact, Jenkins would sneak down from his bedroom on the Friday evening gatherings, sitting with his head between the balusters of the stairway, straining to listen to the tales being woven by his father and uncles. His father was in an elite group of warriors in World War II. His father would talk about his mission as part of the Navy Scouts and Raiders.
To a young child growing up outside Raleigh, North Carolina, these wartime tales were better than the B-movies playing at the downtown cinema on Saturday afternoons. Bobby, as he was called, would close his eyes and listen to his father talk about his nightly reconnaissance and surveillance missions. Since his father was part of the Navy Scouts and Raiders, he was deployed to Normandy to aid in the intelligence gathering for the D-Day invasions. Bobby would envision his father walking along a French country road, his imagination making it look very much like the back country of North Carolina because the back country of North Carolina was where his father’s family lived and the only place Bobby had been in his young life. His father would encounter a German patrol. Quickly and quietly, his swashbuckling father would kill each member singlehandedly. His eyes would open after his father saved the others accompanying him on the mission. His father would be further along in the story in which he described the armaments that the Germans were erecting along Omaha Beach.
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