"The most important thing on your mind was trying to stay alive."
—Bill Gilgren, Dalton, NE
Third Infantry Division in Europe
"It’s just kind of hard to describe really. You are scared, jumpy, and you prayed. You knew when there was a [kamikaze] raid and the planes were coming in, that somebody was going to get hit because it was just a one-way trip for the pilot."
—John Zimola, Wahoo, NE
Fire Controlman First Class,USS Louisville
What is it like to be under enemy fire or waiting for an attack?
Find out what happened to several Nebraskans during combat, both in the European and Asian Theatres of War.
In the videos, the soldiers sometimes refer to Japanese people as "Japs". This term was as offensive back then as it is today to Japanese and Japanese Americans, but was in fairly common usage by non-Japanese in the first half of the twentieth century. Because we were at war with Japan, government officials, newspapers, and propaganda posters as well as military personnel of that era all used the term to show contempt for the enemy.