Saturday, June 03, 2006

Asiatic Fleet - Otto Schwarz

I visited Otto recently at the Lyons Veterans Nursing Home. I'd have to say, he is not in the best of health (as if that is anything new). He is getting more and more miserable. I took my son and two of his friends by to visit briefly. Being blind, and having nobody with him for any length of time but for the occasional day Trudy and other family can be with him. Blind isolation is wearing him down. We each picked up his hand and shook it - a salute of sorts ... after all, he could not see a salute anyway. He was not resting well when we stopped by so we kept it short. This time, more than the other times I have been by, he was tremendously miserable. He said "I have to get out of here somehow even if it is in a pine box". He meant it. Blindness and many operations over the past few years have taken a toll. We wish him comfort and peace. I told him about the speech I gave to the Asiatic Fleet Vets in Asheville. I quoted him twice in the speech. I would have read some more to him from the manuscript for the Oct. release book "Ship of Ghosts" by Hornfischer, but he was too miserable to enjoy some reading. Reference. Check out the recent publication on the Asiatic Fleet HERE, "Playing for Time".
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