Lundy Cavender

Lundy Cavender says it "felt like a freight train" hit his house when an EF-3 tornado struck on April 25.

As we honor our servicemen and women who gave their lives in battle for our freedom, meet a World War II veteran who had revenge in his heart for the more than 2,400 Americans killed at Pearl Harbor.

And now, almost eight decades later, Lundy Cavender has also survived something else.

"I can't tell you how I got there, but I was down there," Lundy says, pointing to the floor next to his bed, where he wound up when a massive tornado slammed Ruston in the middle of the night one month ago.

"Sounded like a freight train hit this house," Lunday described.

His home of 58 years was right in the path. He's got bad roof damage. That also means mold had formed inside. The home needs heavy repairs upstairs. But Lundy just took it in stride.

"This wasn't very scary here. You want me to tell you something scary?"

Lundy went into a tale about rough seas he encountered while in the Navy.

He also described his role on the target of a gun crew on a battleship in World War II. The USS Louisville was part of an armada of 800 ships that first set out for Saipan on June 6, 1944. They would attack the Japanese on a series of Pacific islands.

Lundy was a radioman, relaying messages from men on the beach calling in the location needed for fire from his ship's big guns.

"That was my job. I directed the gunfire," Lundy says. "We didn't hesitate. We didn't hesitate about killing them. We killed them by the hundreds.

"'That's for the Americans you killed at Pearl Harbor,' Lundy remembers he and the crew feeling. "We had a grudge against them."

Lundy endured 69 straight days and nights of shelling of the enemy, as U.S. forces took island after island, and Lundy racked up ten battle stars.

Now pushing age 99, Lundy's handled being a tornado survivor just like he did that chaotic war duty -- no fear.

"It didn't worry me. It didn't worry you. You did your job," he says.

Lundy was called back into action during the Korean War. Then he had a career with chambers of commerce in Helena, Arkansas, Shreveport, and finally Ruston.


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