Missile scare makes one think


Ted Escobar

I am sure that if I hear a ballistic missile is headed to the Yakima Valley, I will look for some place to hide.

Maybe a concrete culvert like my dad did in 1963, or thereabouts, when a Chubasco swept through the valley.

We were in the asparagus field, cutting, when the giant wind storm hit. Dad told us to leave the field, and we ran to the cars the trucks.

Dad was 48 and not as quick as us. As the storm started to throw every loose thing around, we slipped into the safety of the vehicles. The car rocked sideways, and an out-house on the property blew into pieces as the wind hit it.

Sister Jenny began to cry because dad wasn’t with us. I calmed her a little by reminding her that he was a resourceful man. Sure enough, after the storm passed, dad appeared.

“I just got into a culvert so I could breathe,” he said.

When Hawaii experienced its missile crisis last Saturday, no one on the island knew what to do. There have been no safety plans or exercises in case of an attack, even here on the mainland.

The fact that hasn’t been done should be a clue that surviving a nuclear war would be futile.

My last position on the matter came to me when President Donald Trump and that guy from North Korea were shouting at each other: I’m just going to sit down and die.”

That may because I’m nearly 73 and have lived what I would call a full life. My clock is ticking louder and louder. I’m that man who says “Thank you God” each day I awaken.

It’s all about perspective.

I was totally scared in my teens, 20s and 30s when verbal threats were made by the Russians. I was 16 during the Cuban Missile Crisis. I hadn’t lived yet, and I dearly wanted to.

In my 30s, I had kids to think about. I would have wanted to get home to them and their mother.

The kids are gone now. Pat and I work about 25 miles from each other. A missile would probably hit before we could see each other again.

We are now in a place in history in which it’s doubtful the government can do much to save us from nuclear war. We can only hope it never happens.

That’s why I mentioned the culvert story.

Don’t ask the government to save you. Plan your own way survive, not only the attack but also the resulting environment.

The following is a letter from Bre Slegers.

She and her husband Jarred are Sunnysiders who experienced the Hawaii alert. It’s a mix of fear and absence of fear and hope and futility:

“My Husband and I, along with our two children and my parents (from Visalia, Calif.) were on the Big Island of Hawaii the day of the threat.

“We got the text message as we were about ready to leave for breakfast. We frantically tried to figure out what to do.

“The TV alert told us to stay indoors and away from windows. So we stayed in our rooms, called my parents & we prayed together.

“We prayed that it would be a false alarm or, if not, that they would be able to shoot it down before it hit.

“Having to try to explain to a 6-year-old what a missile is and why we were so afraid was very tough.

“I cried but tried to stay calm for my kids. We had no idea what to expect but knew it could be very bad, very soon.

“We got official word about 40 minutes later that it was a false alarm.

“I cannot begin to describe the relief we felt. It truly put our whole lives into perspective in a matter of seconds.

“We are very thankful that God spared us and kept us safe.”

Yeah, there is that — God.

If you’re thinking of a plan for survival, maybe you should include him. A prayer here and there wouldn’t hurt.

— Ted Escobar is the managing editor of The Daily Sun. Email him at tescobar@dailysunnews.com.


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