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MY DAD Author: Andrew Chang

Index Part 1: The Narrative Historical Narrative..............................Pg. 3 Epilogue..............................................Pg. 5 Part 2: Resources Family tree..........................................Pg. 6 Interview with great-uncle...................Pg. 7 Bibliography........................................Pg. 9 Reflection...........................................Pg. 10

The Historical Narrative


It felt like the world was frozen. My friend, Bien, put one of her hands on my shoulder; waiting with me for the siren to stop its screeching death song. It’s still hard to believe that she was going to marry either my two elder brothers or me, for that was how she came to our house. I’m only 13, so it doesn’t really matter right now, I’ve always thought. There were people murmuring quietly, and with the flashing red light of the siren, I barely stopped myself from crying out. Head throbbing, I whispered a quick prayer to anyone who could hear it. Ten minutes passed by with the sound of whirring jet planes, the smell of fear overwhelming the tiny shelter. Pale faces with little light in their eyes skimmed across mine, searching for hope. Why? Why are there war, blood, and death? I was too young to understand. Only if I was older… Sunlight gleamed into my eyes as it curled its shiny fingers, reaching for the ground. Finally. I sucked in my first breath, full of rich oxygen, and headed back to my dad’s farm. “Protect the seven islands, of the Pacific Ocean…” I sang loudly, strolling down the path. But something made my legs freeze and my mouth drop open. My dad was bent over a rice patty, but it wasn’t ours. A bright light reflected off a huge, rusted metal. It looked like a miniature rocket. He held it, though it was too big and awkward, and set off towards the heart of the village. My heart skipped a quick beat. Adrenaline rushed through me as I realized what he was holding. The round shape and the little fins at the end resembled the one thing that I feared the most. It was a bomb. I didn’t know what to do. What if it exploded? I thought. Eyes wide and alert, my legs shook violently. My body finally reacted to its survival instincts and I found myself rushing off the path, leaving tears in my eyes. I’m such a coward! I scolded at myself. I should have gone with him! I ran and ran, tears spilling down my cheeks; sweat dropping on my shirt, until I stopped at my house. Page 3

I burst through my house like a storm, destroying anything in its path. I pounded

on the stairs and stomped into my room. Why? Why why why why WHY!? Hot, angry tears rolled down my face like a waterfall. The bomb could’ve exploded already. My heart pounded heavily, and I played with my fingers, unsuccessfully trying to stop my choking sobs. What should I do? Pacing in my room, I then plopped onto my bed. My dad. The one who taught me how to tend his farm. The one who shared funny stories with me. The one who I go bicycling with in the village. And yet this day, he might disappear from the face of the Earth. NO! I thought He wouldn’t die! He wouldn’t let his family down! He’s a strong willed man! And so I waited as the clock went tick, tock, tick, and tock. I woke to the sound of the door opening. I rubbed my eyes, and the memories pounded back at me, like a huge wave. Dad. It wasn’t a dream. I opened the wooden door silently, and sprinted down the stairs. And there stood my dad, MY dad, just standing there, with a huge grin. I choked down a sob, and hugged him as tight as I could. The smell of rice patties and dirt filled my nose. The smell of my dad. He’s alive. “I saw-” I began, but he cut me off. “I know son. I saw you. ” And he begin to tell his tale, like every other story of his. “So basically, I had to carry the bomb to the police station, and of course, I was scared that it would explode. It was worth it though, watching the policeman turn wide eyes and his legs shaking. He was so horrified he sent me away immediately!” He laughed. “In the end, I just threw it into the lake.” I let out a sigh of relief. The pressure on my chest was lifted, and I grinned. It felt like the gray clouds around my head had been cleared, letting the bright sunshine shine down upon me. My eyes felt itchy, and I hugged my dad once again. No American or Chinese was going to kill my dad. Not today.

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Epilogue This is  the  story  about  my  great-­‐uncle,  who  experience   World  War  2  in  Taiwan.  Now  he  still  lives  there,  with  his   wife  Bien.  Yep,  in  the  end,  he  was  married  to  Bien,  and   the  minister  of  the  town  celebrated  their  60th  marriage   anniversary  just  this  year  (2012)!  Sadly,  his  dad  died   due  to  a  sickness  in  1980.  During  World  War  2,  the   people  of  my  great  uncle’s  village  had  sharpened   bamboo  sticks  as  weapons,  incase  if  the  Americans   actually  landed.  Thankfully  they  didn’t,  or  else  a  great   slaughter  would  happen.  The  scene  with  the  bomb  was   very  crucial  to  my  great  uncle’s  life  because  if  the  bombs   actually  exploded,  he  and  some  of  the  villagers  might   have  died,  and  the  village  would  be  destroyed,  leaving   the  survivors  without  shelter.  

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Family tree This is my family tree!

My great-uncle

Huo Yan Dai

Huo Tu Dai

Jeff Chang

Yun Yun Dai

Anna Dai Me

Andrew Chang

Jonathan Chang

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Interview with my great-uncle!



When the bomber planes came, and what were you thinking? Why? 第一个 轟炸機來的時候,你在想什麼?




I was horrified. I learned that there are two different kinds of planes, the bigger American ones, and the smaller Chinese ones. How old were you when it happened? 你當時幾歲?




I was 13. Did the bombs destroy any important things to you? 你有什麼重要的東西被摧毀? No, nothing. What did you do as the first bomb siren rang? Why? 空襲警報第一次響時,你在做什麼? I ran toward the underground bombing shelter, because that’s the only safe place. If you could go back in time, would you do the same thing or do something else? 如果你可以回到以前的時候,你會做些不一樣的事 ? I would do the same thing as before. Were any of your friends or family with you during the event? 在 個時候,你有朋友或家人在你身邊 ? Sometimes I had to run with my family and friends, and sometimes I had to run by myself. How did this event impact your life? 個事件怎麼干擾到你的生活? We couldn’t go to school, and we were poor because of it, sometimes we didn’t even have clothes to wear. Were you injured? 你有受傷 ? No Did you learn anything from this event? 在 個事件裡,你有學到什麼 ? I learned a Japanese song. It is about trying to protect the 7 islands of the Pacific Ocean. Taiwan is one of them. Where did you hide from the bombs? 你在那裡躲起來? Underground shelter Did you know why the Americans were bombing Taiwan? 你知道為什麼台灣一直被炸 ? I knew that Japan was fighting against America, and so they bombed us, since Taiwan was one of Japan’s colonies.

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What stood out to you in this event? 有 個部分對你比較重要?為什麼? The most important part was when the 5 bombs fell and didn’t explode because if it did, our village would have bean destroyed into pieces. And lots of people might have died. How long did they keep bombing? What were you thinking? 他們炸了多久?你當時在想什麼? About from 10 minutes to half an hour. I was thinking about when will we come out, when will they stop bombing, and I was still scared. I was also afraid that maybe the underground shelter would be bombed and destroyed. Was your dad the only one who carried a bomb? 就只有你爸爸把炸彈拿走 ? Yes, only my dad took it. Did you walk with your dad? If you didn’t, what did you do? 你有跟你爸爸一起走 ? 如果沒有,那你當時在做什麼? I saw him, but then ran home because I was too scared. Were there any friends or family with you in the underground shelter? 你在防空洞時,你朋友或家人又跟你在一起 ? My friend Bien was with me. How did you find the bomb? 你是怎麼發現炸彈的? I saw my dad take it out of a rice patty. What happened to the other bombs? 其他的炸彈怎麼了? They never exploded so we just left it there. What did you do when you arrived at your house? 如果你那時在作其他事,你那是在想什麼? I was thinking what would happen if my dad died. 你爸爸什麼時候回來? At night. Could you hear the bombs in the shelter? 你那時在防空洞裡時,你可以聽得到炸彈炸的聲音

No, but you could hear the jet planes. What was your reaction when your dad came back? 你爸爸回來的時候(如果你沒有跟著他去)你的反應是什麼? I was very happy, of course. What were you thinking when you went out of the shelter? 你一出來的時候你在想什麼? I was just enjoying to be outside. Who was with you? 在那個時候你的家庭有那些人? There was no one but my dad and my friend.

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Bibliography Spencer C. Tucker, Priscilla Mary Robert, Allan R. Millet. Encyclopedia of World War II. A Political, Social, and Military History, Volume S-Z. Santa Barbara, Calif: ABC-Cilo, c2005

Suppose to be S-Z

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Reflection Working on this project had helped me understand what my greatuncle had been through, and what historically significant event has happened in Taiwan. I think this project is important because when I die; the piece could be passed down from generation to generation. Then it would be really important, and maybe my grand-grand son would find it interesting, learning about the past with actual primary source. I really enjoyed listening to my mom translate what my great-uncle said because I always learn something new. During the very beginning of the project, it was hard because I couldn’t find a family member to interview. I was going to interview my uncle, but I realized that he was too young when the historical event happened. It worried me, and somehow, finally, my mom suggested that my great uncle would be old enough. That’s how I got this piece. I think I’ve definitely grown as a writer from September because I still wrote quite a bit of telling before. Now, I added more description, and stretched out my small moment as much as I could. And to other students who tries to create this project, you should really be careful on finding the right family member because if you can’t contact them, or they didn’t really experienced the event, it can be really annoying to try to find another family member. I really liked this project because unlike other projects that I’ve done, I actually learned more about the past of my great uncle, and the past of my country, Taiwan. The project actually grabbed my attention, and because it interested me, I was able to put more effort into it. Though it was kind of hard trying to be as another person (in their point of view), it was fun pretending to be him. I’ve loved the entire journey of this project, and I know I will never forget it.

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andrew01pd2018 Identity Portfolio  

A historical narrative based on my family's experiences.