April 11, 2012 - Jimmy and Jessie LeJune - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

April 11, 2012 - Jimmy and Jessie LeJune

Jessie and Jimmy LeJune come from a long line of service members.  Jimmy, served in the waning days of World War 2 in the Navy, taking part in the atomic test at Bikini Island.  When the Korean conflict occurred, Jessie joined Jimmy in the Navy.  The two even filed paperwork so they could work on the same tender destroyer, the Bryce Canyon.  They remember one of the scariest moments of the war, when their ship got lost in a mine field.  

"It was a stormy night," said Jimmy.  "The ship got turned around. We could see the gunfire from Korea.  The captain came out and said, Turn this thing around and let's head back.  Let's get out of here."  

Jessie remembers the same story and remembered the assistance the Bryce ship received.

"They did send in one or two destroyers in to get us out of the minefield," recalled Jimmy.  "But it was just like he said.  It happened so fast, you couldn't be scared, to tell you the truth." 

The LeJune brothers were one of 9 sets of brothers serving on board the Bryce Canyon.  Jessie, a radio operator, had a part-time job as a loan shark.

"People needed to borrow money, so we decided to loan them money," explained Jimmy.  "Me and another guy.  So we loaned them money, like you said, 3 for 5.  The most we would loan out to one person was 20 dollars". 

He's not sure it was technically legal, but it was good enough for him.  The two brothers went on to receive a Bronze Star and other medals for their service during the war.  Jessie went on to work at Fort Polk and retired after 30 years service.

Copyright 2012 KPLC. All rights reserved.

 

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