A signalman—Flags Karetka—at battle stations on board a destroyer in what has been called the greatest sea battle of World War II kept notes as Japanese dive bombers attacked the aircraft carrier Yorktown—here, minutes after the first bomb detonated. To commemorate the 60th anniversary of the battle, he recalls what he witnessed that day.
Midway, that well-named atoll in the middle of the South Pacific, is a wildlife refuge today. Its two islands are full of albatrosses—gooney birds, as the Navy always called them—much of the year. Little is left there to remind visitors it once was a major U.S. Navy base and 60 years ago the target of a Japanese invasion.