In 1944 my grandfather, Brig. Gen. J. B. Sweet, was serving in the U. S. Army in Tehran, supplying arms to the Soviets.  His son Bob, after flying missions over Japan, was training new B-24 pilots in Nevada.  His plane went down on a training mission, and all on board died.

His widow had twin boys two weeks old.

Since it was wartime, grandpa could not come home for the funeral.  He had to bear it alone, far away.  I don’t know how he did it.  But the Lord was with him.  And I never heard him complain about that, or about anything, as long as I knew him.

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2 thoughts on “Memorial Day memory”

  1. bob schultz says:

    It is a sometimes overused expression, but thanks for sharing Mr. ortland.

    I have to ask, and not that it matters too much, but, are you one of the twins?

    1. Ray Ortlund says:

      Thanks, Bob. The twins are my cousins. And one of them became a U.S. Air Force bomber pilot.

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Ray Ortlund


Ray Ortlund is senior pastor of Immanuel Church in Nashville, Tennessee, and serves as a Council member with The Gospel Coalition. You can follow him on Twitter.

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