On Memorial Day 2014, WWII Veteran Doc Long Recalls How a Bible Saved His Life During Combat

( [email protected] ) May 26, 2014 02:40 PM EDT
Doc Long, and 89 year old WWII veteran, says a pocket Bible saved his heart from being penetrated by a deadly bullet during battle.
Image from WWII - ''Approaching Omaha'' (AP)

This Memorial Day, an 89-year-old veteran reveals how his pocket Bible saved his life during WWII.

Doc Long, who will turn ninety this week, says that at 19, his aunt gave him a Bible with his name etched in gold on the front.

Upon presenting to him, his Aunt Mary said, "Now, I want you to read it daily and carry it with you wherever you go in the pocket over your heart."

Long says he did just that, carrying it with him continually while he served in the US military. However, he says nothing could have prepared him for what happened on November 13, 1944.

The veteran reveals that on that day, he was following France's 2nd Armored Division into battle when a German bazooka fired directly in their path, resulting in an immediate exchange of fire between the two armies.

The pivotal moment came when a bazooka shell hit the tank, and Long felt a sting in his right arm, falling to the ground.

As he lay on the ground, shells landing around him, Long recalls a blast lifting him off the ground at least a foot.

While the battle raged on, Long says he lay still, thinking and praying, relying on the grace of God. The words of Psalm 23 came to his mind, which stated, "Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of darkness, I will fear no evil, for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me."

He could hear the sounds of other sounded soldiers crying out around him.

"God, have mercy," he prayed.

After a long night, a French soldier finally came to his rescue, transporting him to medical care. Although his life had been spared, Long was told his right arm had been paralyzed.

Long was given an honorable discharge and sent home from battle. Upon receiving his belongs, he recalls looking down at his Bible, which he had been wearing in his pocket, he noticed that it had been pierced by a piece of bazooka shrapnel. The Bible, he realized, had miraculously stopped the shrapnel from being thrust into his heart.

"I think that is what saved my life," Long stated. "It was the answer to my prayers. God had mercy on me. He did. He did."

Doc Long reveals that he shares his story whenever possible, so that the world will never forget the price of freedom and how God saved his life.

"He had a purpose for me, and His purpose for me was to speak so the youth would know," Long concluded.