H. Beaber - In the Philippines - Monday, January 26, 1941-1942

As we stay home much of the time and we have no letters to write, we are studying the Bible together in the mornings. Taking the book of Mark chapter by chapter and sometimes spend an hour and a half that way. Very nice and refreshing to sit quietly and let Willie talk to us. Helps us to forget our surroundings for the time, and we younger ones are learning much.


Well, well, well. What do you suppose happened tonight? About 9 P.M., I was sitting here at the table playing my piano accordion to pass the time and to amuse the others (if you could call it amusement). All at once, a terrific explosion rent the air. It literally made the house shake and the air quivered. The folks upstairs made a dash for the outside and the air-raid shelter, as all thought immediately it was a bomb, and it was a bomb and a large one! What confusion it started in this place.


Some had heard the plane before the bomb exploded, but thought nothing of it. I had not heard the plane, as I was playing the instrument. But in a few seconds, we could hear the daring aviator gunning his motor for the getaway. Machine guns started stuttering and the deep Boouummppnnoouummpp of the anit-aircraft batteries told us that one of the American planes had sneaked in and dropped a huge bomb somewhere near us.


What a wealth of rumor it made. Some of the natives had the whole American air force arriving in a few minutes. But someone told us it was MacArthur’s birthday and this was just a greeting card from him!


We finally got to bed, but I happened to be awake about 11:30 and heard the drone of a plane coming in from the bay. It was either 2 fighters or else a two-motored bomber. I could hear the overtones from the two motors. The noise got louder. Folks ran out and saw flares dropped. Again the guns started barking, large and small and then the bombs dropped, several this time, and then the getaway. But they did not leave. They circled and more bombs were dropped. They seemed to be in several different directions from us but we have not found out yet, definitely just where the damage was done. Heard the next day that more were dropped about 4:00 in the morning in the northern part of the city.


We were all sleepy the next day. I wonder why!