U.S. At War: Warrior's Mercy

Out of the flaming furnace of a crashed B-25 at a China base came the agonized screams of a dying, 20-year-old sergeant-gunner. Sickened airmen stood around the plane and listened, sobbing in helpless horror. They had tried rescue. As many as six had rushed in, had hauled and tugged, even tried to pull the sergeant loose from his legs, crushed and trapped behind the copilot's seat. They had failed, driven back by the consuming fire.

Suddenly a 31-year-old lieutenant colonel, veteran of 80 missions and ranking officer at the base, walked forward, lifted his heavy pistol and fired two shots. The screaming...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!