A Successful Mission
During the course of World War II, many people gained fame in one way or another. One man was Butch O’Hare. He was a fighter pilot assigned to an aircraft carrier in the Pacific.
One time, his entire squadron was assigned to fly a particular mission. After he was airborne, he looked at his fuel gauge and realized that someone had forgotten to top off his fuel tank. Because of this, he would not have enough fuel to complete his flight and get back to his ship. So, his leader told him to leave formation and return.
As he was returning to the mother ship, he could see a squadron of Japanese Zeroes heading toward the fleet to attack. With all the fighter planes gone, the fleet was almost defenseless.
His was the only opportunity to distract and divert them. Single handedly he dove into the Japanese planes and attacked them.
The American fighter planes were rigged with cameras, so that as they flew and fought, pictures were taken so they were able to learn more about the terrain, enemy planes, etc.
Butch dove at them and shot until all his ammunition was gone; then, he would dive and try to clip off a wing or tail or anything that would make them unfit to fly. He did anything he could to keep them from reaching the American ships.
Finally, the Japanese Squadron took off in another direction. Butch O’Hare and his fighter, both badly shot-up, limped back to the carrier.
He told his story, but not until the film from the camera on his plane was developed, did they realize the extent he really went to, to protect his fleet.
He was recognized as a hero and given one of the highest honors. And as you know, the O’Hare Airport was also named after him.
Prior to this time in Chicago, there was a man named Easy Eddie. He was working for a man you’ve all heard about – Al Capone. Al Capone wasn’t famous for anything heroic, but he was notorious for the murders he’d committed and the illegal things he’d done.
Easy Eddie was Al Capone’s lawyer and he was very good. In fact, because of his skill, he was able to keep Al Capone out of jail.
To show his appreciation, Al Capone paid him very well. He not only earned big money, but he also would get extra things like a residence that filled an entire Chicago city block. The house was fenced, and he had live-in help and all of the conveniences of the day.
Easy Eddie had a son. He loved his son and gave him all the best things while he was growing up; clothes, cars and a good education. Because he loved his son, he tried to teach him right; but, one thing he couldn’t give his son was a good name, and a good example.
Easy Eddie decided this was much more important than all the riches he had given his son. So, he went to the authorities to rectify the wrong. To tell the truth, it meant he must testify against Al Capone, and he knew that Al Capone would do his best to have him killed.
Easy Eddie wanted most of all to try to be an example and to do the best he could to give a good name back to his son: so, he testified. Within the year, he was shot down on a street in Chicago.
These may sound like two unrelated stories; but Butch O’Hare was Easy Eddie’s son.
Sometimes, making the right decision is not easy; in fact, we reach one of the defining levels of maturity when we realize how our decisions affect those around us. That knowledge usually causes us to choose carefully and sometimes differently. Remember, your future and success depend upon your decisions.
Submitted by Tim Connor