Bill Holt

USS Phoenix

Excerpts From
the Book




Brothers of War

The book started as a simple story of Bill, the young 17 year old who joined the Navy in June, 1941 but who became a man at 18 on December 7, 1941 when he experienced the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. His life changed in January of 1943 when in the Coral Sea he was diagnosed as having tuberculosis. He was taken by a destroyer to an Army Hospital in Australia. He was later transferred to Navy Hospitals in California, then to the Veteran's Hospital in Walla Walla, Washington where he died in February of 1945.

The USS Phoenix was sold to Argentina in 1951 and renamed the Belgrano. A British submarine sank the Belgrano during the Falkland Island War in 1982. Nestor Cenci, "Coco," from Argentina has shared his account of the sinking.

Narendra Sethia, "N," was on the submarine, HMS Conqueror, that sank the Belgrano in 1982 killing 323 young men. He was introduced to Coco in Argentina who invited him into his home for eight days. While there he also met Captain Hector Bonzo, Commanding Officer of the Belgrano at the time of the sinking. The three former enemies sat in a restaurant and visited as "Brothers of War."

In 2003 I had the opportunity to go to Japan to meet two Japanese Aviators, Mr. Maruyama and Mr. Harada, who participated in the attack on Pearl Harbor. I spent time with the two Japanese Pearl Harbor veterans as "Brothers of War." They were no longer my enemy.

As all of these men have met each other years later, they were no longer enemies as in the past but they became "Brothers of War."

Lew Holt