Copyright © 2010 Edwin W. Biederman, Jr.
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Dedicated to the men and women who served our country in the Arctic during the Cold War.
Second Lieutenant Kenneth Milton James, Jr., AO 2234462, mashed his B-4 bag into the overhead rack and dropped into his seat in what could be termed an attitude of soldierly relaxation. The Pennsylvania used older cars on the half-fare runs from New York City to Camp Kilmer, but age had not relaxed the austere angle of the red plush seats. This wasn’t bothering Ken James—in fact, the Pennsylvania station for all its filth and noise was something familiar to hold on to. It would be a long time before he set eyes on that impersonal masonry, and his mind strived to absorb the minute details—everything from the flattened chewing gum irrevocably squashed on the platform to the cast iron designs on the side railings of the stairway. Before he had hobbled down the steps to the train level with his bag, he had studied the red and gold sign that announced the departure time of the Lehigh Valley’s passenger train, The Black Diamond 1055.