Fleming: Bomb dropped on Swets farm during WWII
The war in Europe was winding down in the spring of 1945, but the Pacific continued to be the scene of many battles, even though the Allies were gradually recapturing territory once held by Japan. Yet Japanese rulers did not give up easily, as the Swets family, Timnath farmers, learned on March 19, 1945.
Jack Swets, who was only 8 at the time, was in the corral near the family home when he heard an unusual noise — a loud buzzing sound. The next thing he knew, a ball of fire landed in a field only a short distance from where he stood. Flames 10 or 15 feet high filled the air.
Jack was struck dumb. He dashed for the house but could not get out the words to describe what he had just seen. A book of Timnath history compiled by the Columbine Club relates that he was “white as a sheet.”
Jack’s father, John Swets, promptly called the sheriff, who called in the FBI and the Army Department of Security and Intelligence. It developed the theory that the explosion had been caused by a bomb launched far off in Japan.
Though residents of Fort Collins had taken part in air raid drills and many homes had black-out curtains, few people thought the enemy actually would attack this far inland. Residents took precautions; authorities were prepared but not unduly concerned.
Then came the bomb.
This incendiary bomb was …READ MORE…