HISTORICAL NOTES: Civilian Casualty

In the last days of World War II and the years that followed, a handful of selfless men within the Government fought a long, grueling battle to save the nation while the nation slept. The most important of these was James Vincent Forrestal, Secretary of the Navy, and in 1947, the Secretary of Defense. Not until Forrestal jumped to his death from the 16th floor of the Bethesda Naval Hospital, in May 1949, did the world catch a hint of how exhausting the battle had been.

This week an assortment of Forrestal's dictated memoranda, calendar notes and letters were bundled...

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!