The Screaming on the Beach
Less than 20 feet away from me, a bomb exploded. Blood spattered, and bits of acrid smelling skin sailed passed my ear. Behind me, a group of American soldiers charged forward, their machine guns aimed towards the sand dunes. I looked down at my little brother Martin, who was laying curled up in the fetal position, his head pressed against my chest.
“Come on, Marty. Let's go!” I stood up and yanked him to his feet. “We gotta follow the other guys!”
Martin didn't move. He stood still, his eyes staring blankly off into the distance. His lower lip quivered. My heart went out to him, but we had to keep moving.
I grabbed him by the arm. “Come on!” I yelled as I ran ...view middle of the document...
We laid our guns across our laps, and moved closer together. I pulled Martin next to me and put my arm around his shoulder. He still didn't speak. When it began to get dark, Joey, who was acting as leader for our group, looked over at us.
“I think we can sleep now,” he said. He swung his gun over his shoulder and held it at the ready. “I’ll keep an eye out, you guys go to sleep.”
We did as he said and reached into our packs. I pulled out a patched blanket and laid it in the sand. Martin still wasn’t moving, so I reached into his pack and got out his blanket for him.
“Get some sleep, Marty.” I said, patting his shoulder gently. “I'll be right next to you.” Obediently, he laid down on the blanket and shut his eyes. He still didn't say anything. I knelt down and pulled off his shoes.
I wasn’t tired, so I sat next to Joey and kept watch with him. There was no one alive in sight, but the scene of the beach was terrible. All around us, dead bodies laid bleeding in the sand. Bullet smashed corpses and mutilated bodies were scattered everywhere across the beach. Some of their faces were so damaged you couldn't tell if they were German or American. The low sound of moaning echoed across the beach, but it was impossible to tell where it was coming from. I lit a cigarette and tried to ignore it.
Pretty soon, I started to get tired myself. Joey was content to keep watch alone, so I went and laid down next to Martin. He didn't even make a sound as he slept. He just laid quietly on his blanket, his chest moving steadily up and down. I laid next to him and listened to him breathe.
Marty was 14 when they bombed Pearl Harbor, and was adamant that he did not want to join the war. Soon after I ran off to join the army, my older brother Ricky enlisted. He was killed in late 1943. Not long after, Martin joined, and was placed into my platoon. When I asked him why he joined, he said he wanted to help his brothers. Martin was quick, skilled, and tough when he first joined. He was almost better than me. Everyone always joked that “those Robinson boys are gonna beat the Nazis on their own.” But when we invaded Normandy, the fighting finally got to Martin. Not even an hour after we landed on the beach, he stopped talking and curled up close to me. He was in shock,...