At 08:48 hours on April 2nd, 1942, the outbound U.S.S. Hornet approached the Golden Gate Bridge with its cargo of Doolittle’s sixteen U.S. Army Air Force B-25 Mitchell bombers. A civilian fishing trawler hauled back the anti-submarine net. Tensions were high. The Japanese were winning the battle in the Pacific while the fear of enemy insurgents had shaken the heart and soul of civilians and military at home. The Black Dragon Society (Kokwryukai) had been formed in 1901 to serve the Japanese Empire at all costs. It was a paramilitary, right-wing group that had infiltrated the West Coast of the United States, blending into the Japantowns of Seattle, San Francisco and Oakland.
My biological grandfather, Sergeant Elmer Klausen, a member of the California Grays (a militia group with a checkered past), posted a National Guardsman at the southend of the bridge.
W.W.II: April 2nd, 1942:
The antenna of the aircraft carrier was lowered to ease its passage beneath the Golden Gate. Without warning, a gunshot was heard from the nearby tower. Sergeant Klausen rushed toward the alarm. A hooded figure dressed in black appeared from the fog. The Sergeant ordered the person to halt and fired a warning from his Winchester, but the mystery person sprinted away, disappearing bit by bit into the mist. The Sergeant leaned over the railing, inspecting the deck of the Hornet for any damage. All appeared normal. Good. In an impulse, he turned and creaked open the steel door of the tower. The dead body of the National Guardsman lay limp before him. An MP soon arrived followed by an ambulance. The sight of the soldier in a body bag sent Sergeant Klausen to seek quiet. On the other side of the tower, he found a nine-inch, curved knife with exotic foreign characters written on its handle. A calling card? W.W.II: April 2nd, 1942.
Next Monday, we’ll join my grandfather, Elmer Klausen, as he and his vigilante pals orchestrate an illicit raid upon San Francisco’s Japantown. Stay tuned. Cheers!