Last Man Out

The last weekend of May 1944, a saboteur is finalizing his plans to destroy the town of Scarlet Tanager, Kentucky, and its coal industry for the sake of his reputation, the fatherland, and the Fuhrer. The innocent will suffer, the uncommitted will cower, those who care will rally, blood will be spilt, fuses will be lit, and the Earth will shake.

“Sergeant Jones,” 82nd Airborne, jumped the 509 in Corbin hoping to make the railway yard at the Scarlet Tanager Mine by evening; he never showed…

Jenny Kearny, high school teacher, fought to discourage the advances of the distinguished, intelligent, arrogant, persistent English gentleman, twice her age; she failed…

Bo Hanson, graduating senior, hoped to “accumulate” enough money to make it out of town before the draft board caught up with him; he came up short…

Karen O'Quinly, graduating senior, crested the ridge and headed into the hollow hoping to beat the storm home that night; she never arrived…

Tom Polimar, graduating senior, planned to share pie and plans by a quiet stream with the girl he had liked since kindergarten; he was waylaid…

Julie O'Quinly, school secretary, planned on a joyful and festive evening, escorting and presenting her daughter at the End-of-School Picnic and Dance; her plans were frustrated…

Dan Truman, itinerant deputy sheriff, resolved to save the town and its mines by standing between the saboteur and his target; he was forestalled…

A saboteur purposed and prepared to set a fire in the throat of the mine; he succeeded…

--R.W. Chatman



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