Norman Howard Strength
Norman was the first soilder killed in action in Spokane, Washington 1968. It was his second tour when he jumped off a track onto a land mine.
Smiths Funeral Home had the service, hundreds of local people showed up. They said it was the biggest funeral they have ever had. He was buried at Green Wood Cemetary.
Hi Mother Audrey, Father Benjamin, Brothers, Jim, Ray and Jon, Sisters Shirley, Judy, Loretta and Benita all came and there families.
Jon, his brother was drafted after Norman came home from first tour and Norman went back to be with his brother. When he got their, Jon was wounded and sent home, Norman was killed about three weeks later.
Norman (we called Butch) and Jon were very close. I (Judy) was two years older than Butch and Jon was one year older than me. I will tell you the truth, not once did I ever see Butch fight with his brothers or sisters. He was the most easy and outgoing person. You would say, He was the one who would keep peace in the family. He never talked about anyone, and was always helpful. I loved him dearly and I will never get over the loss as long as I live.
He was very close to his Mother. Butch and I were the youngest of the eight and I was very close to Dad.
It would take so long to tell you everything I adore about him. I will tell you, he was the only one beside Dad I was close with. I was way to young to be with older sisters and being so young I never new my older brothers until later in life, other than Jon. Butch was my best friend, I lost part of me when he past.
It was just a few days before Mom and Dad got the news he was killed in action, when I was writing him a letter. I was in the middle of the letter, when a strange feeling came over me, I looked at the letter got real sad. I don't know how to explain how it felt. It was overwhelming, I knew he just died. I put the letter in a safe place and had it for many years. I would take it out and read it sometimes, then it came up missing. I also had a few dreams that I was next to him in the man hole while while the men were fighting. It was scary, but I was so happy to be with him...remember it was only a dream.
I will write more later