In a chapel in a small town nestled in the shadows of the snow-capped Clinch Mountain, near Sneedville, Tennessee, a standing room only crowd gathered to remember a man no one there had ever met. An elderly woman held a folded copy of a newspaper on her lap. It contained an unusual obituary of a 22-year-old Sailor who had died in 1943. His burial was to be 26 January 2008.
Veterans of all the service branches from four wars, school children, and distant relatives had come to honor Seaman First Class General Preston Douglas. Born in 1921, in Newcomb, Tennessee, Douglas was in the Navy during World War II. He was assigned to the USS Helena (CL-50) when the ship came under attack at the Battle of Kula Gulf.