June 23, 1942 (Tuesday)

Pearl Harbor

Very nasty accident at the hangar today. A civilian workman, repairing the roof, fell from one of the girders to the cement floor of the hangar — a drop of about 50 feet! A wooden wing crate broke his fall partially. He broke both arms, both legs, all his ribs, fractured his skull, and suffered numerous contusions and internal injuries. I’ve seen many accidents, But this was particularly horrible due to the ghastly manner in which one of his legs was broken — it was actually broken off between the knee and ankle with only a bit of skin holding the two pieces together and a full 6 to 8 inches of bone exposed. Another thing that affected everyone was that he refused to lose consciousness and made repeated days attempt to get up from the pool of blood he was lying in. A pretty tough bunch of boys around here but they’re all pretty pale after that. I thought that the damned ambulance would never get there, although actually they did very well. You can hear that man’s life ticking out with the seconds, each of which seem to be another drop of his precious blood, to add to the ever widening pool on the floor.

A two-hour hop in the afternoon.

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