Chief Brooks World War II Interview
The purpose of the interview was to actually get in touch with a little part of history instead of doing some research that was just busy work. Getting to know what happened by somebody that was actually in the event obviously made it more interesting. Mr. Brooks was the perfect person to interview since he was understandable and also had a sense of humor, which most people at that age of his don’t.
The interview was held at the Carrollton Public Senior Center in an open classroom with the capacity of 57 persons. Mr. Brooks was in the front of the class with rows of pupils in chairs in front of him. He had a pedestal and a couple of books with papers to look down on. The form of the interview was basically us asking him questions and those questions led to either something or nothing, And a few people asked some pretty dumb questions that your not ever suppose to ask a veteran.
Chief Brooks was in the Navy side of the military and he served from 1942 of September to 1963 of October. He was stationed in the South Pacific for three years. The mission of his group was to, “Locate enemy and Destroy”. The objectives were to do shore bombards, carry aircrafts, and help out struggling sea men in ocean. The most important battles fought, Chief Brooks said, was the battle of Midway and the b-25’s on Tokyo, he believed Roosevelt and Churchill were the most important leaders politically. He had many military leaders as he kept saying, Chief Brooks did believe in the Atomic Bomb. He said he was happy when he heard that it was being dropped. It saved a million American lives and 3 million Japanese lives. So I guess it was actually a pretty good decision. Captain Gunner Brooks was stationed at Pearl Harbor, doing some special training when the Atomic Boom was being dropped. The initial reaction for Brooks was, “let’s go to the beer joint!” He was happy and everyone was cheering in the dawn of the news of the boom. Yamamoto made a bad decision. He admitted his fault in bombing of Pearl Harbor, he broke a code. He knew the US would come back with a strong strike so why would you even test their warfare? He was stationed in the South Pacific when the war ended. He had to go back to Japan and clean out mess. He described how they went into the town with no ammunition clips just empty weapons. There was a misty and spooky rain after the first day won II the war. He described the relationships were good through after the war. Everyone was just happy it was over. For Chief Brooks his favorite and main weapons used were 40mil, turrets, and torpedo tubes (searching torpedoes). He believed Eisenhower did a brave job with France. He said the differences between Iraq and World War II was that in one war we knew who the enemy was and the other we don’t know whom to kill.
He was telling of one story of how he had to lead a bigger ship into battle. He was pretty much the 2nd boat second life. He was told that instead of the boat being blown up by a mine it would be his instead. That just shows how much loyalty the man had. He described how everyone back in the days was ready and wanting to go to war.
Another story he told us that people went overboard all the time. When he was on an aircraft carrier, he said that some planes barely lifted the ground before hitting the water. Pilots ejected and were picked up for retries. One time he picked up a pilot three times in one day. The reward for picking up overboard men was ice cream.
He also let us knows that he was in a famous battle where it was the only battle that used searching torpedoes. It was great because the US technology allowed the US ships to be far enough away so the Japes couldn’t get our point in the sea with their weak radars. He said a ship was taken down with 16 torpedo tubes, sinking the ship in ten minutes. He was a qualified gunner for 90 different ships.
Somebody asked him if he had many best friends die. This is where the emotion sought out. It kind of paused him for a little bit and it seemed like he froze with a terrifying memory. He mentioned how one man hung on to something till he drowned. There were others that didn’t hold on and still lived. That’s pretty crazy I’d say. The man must’ve had a competitive side.
One of his hardest battles he said was on an island. He had invaded the island and aircrafts were being built at the top. Our marines were being pushed back and we couldn’t get to the aircraft builders. So the invasion push was taken a step further and back up came in and were able to invade the whole island once again.
Captain Gunner Brooks showed me that World War II was a battle happy won. It definitely wasn’t easy either. The struggles in was make me really grateful for every veteran. Chief Brooks was a different person, none that I’ve ever met. He seemed very happy and an optimistic person. He saw the glass half full. His stories were great to listen to and also very entertaining. He changed my views of the war of World War II.
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