The Morning Star Rising on the First Day

The Morning Star Rising on the First Day


While growing up I enjoyed watching a television program called, “The Twilight Zone.” This program reportedly presented stories of real-life experiences that defied explanation using the laws of physics. There certainly have been “Twilight Zone” experiences in my life and the story below is one of them. 


I was drafted in July 1965 and went through my Basic Training at Fort Knox, Kentucky. Immediately afterward, I was assigned to an Advanced Infantry Training (AIT) unit in Fort Ord California, where this “Twilight Zone” like experience took place.

This is a picture of my unit. I'm in the last row, on the right, the one with the glasses. This is a picture of my unit. I’m in the last row, on the right, the one with the glasses.

In December 1965, I experienced an event that altered the life path that I had been on up to that point.

It occurred at Fort Ord California while I was in the last week of Advanced Infantry Training (AIT). Wednesday was the day we picked up our laundry, and I had carried mine back to barracks as the Sun was setting. As I walked across the billet to my bunk, I could see that darkness was falling through the windows I passed by. I was placing items into my footlocker when I noticed a faint light now illuminating the darkness outside, and I wondered what it might be. I continued to watch as it slowly lit up the entire street scene outside, and, eventually, the light was streaming into our poorly lit billet as well.

There were now several soldiers in the street looking up into the sky and pointing to something. Curious to see what it was, I walked back toward the billet door. I could see that the number of GI’s in the street was rapidly growing as I re-passed the long line of windows on the wall.

When I arrived at the exit, I found that a group of about ten unknown soldiers standing in the doorway. They were engaged in banter and were just having a good time, oblivious to my need to exit.

So, I asked them to make way for me, but they seemingly did not hear me. So, I asked again, using an elevated voice, but saw no change in their behavior. Determined to see what was going on outside, I thought that I would work my way through them, gently pressing on them if necessary. When I pressed into the first man I encountered, I found that I could not move him with a light force. So, I gradually increased my effort until my maximum strength would not budge him. It was then that I stepped back to look at this wall of a man.

I became a bit startled when I saw his motionless face. I stared at him for a moment and determined that there was no eye movement or detectable breathing. Then suddenly, there was quiet. The typical sounds of a billet filled with active soldiers had instantly turned to pure silence. I refocused on the beads of sweat on the man’s face; they were just hanging there, not trickling downward as if there were no gravity.

My gaze panned across to the other soldiers in the doorway. They were standing there like manakins in a store window, seemingly flash-frozen in time.

I slowly panned my gaze across the billet. It looked as if someone had pressed the stop button on their video. There was no sound and no movement.

I then focused on the light streaming through the windows. I saw the dust suspended in the air and observed that even these particles were motionless, not being affected by any air currents.

The light looked something like this.

The light looked something like this.

I turned back to the doorway and looked at the soldiers standing there. I wondered why I could move and look around while they could not. Then suddenly, everything returned to normal. The men in the doorway continued in their banter, precisely from where they left off. The sounds of the billet returned as before. I turned back toward my bunk and could see everyone moving around as if nothing had happened.

I looked through the windows and could see that the light was now fading. So I worked my way through to the door, open it, and I looked up into the sky. I saw a ball of light ascending into the heavens, gradually growing dimmer as it rose until it disappeared, leaving only darkness.

I returned to my bunk, sat down, and looked around. There was no one talking about what had just happened. The men were doing what they always did as if nothing had happened. Then it dawned on me; they had nothing to remember. But then, why would I be the only one to experience what happened?

My answer came early the next morning when the Company Clerk came and escorted me to the Company Commander office. Once we were inside the HQ, he directed me to go right in. So I marched right in, did a left face on the center of the Captain’s desk, came to Attention, and saluted while shouting, “Sir, Private Gordon reporting as ordered, Sir.” The Captain firmly responded, “At ease, Private,” and I moved to Parade Rest.

The Captain then spoke in an agitated voice, “Gordon, did you know that you have a type 2 profile on your eyes?” I replied immediately replied, “Sir, Private Gordon does not know what a type 2 profile on his eyes is, Sir.” The Commander sighed deeply and sat back a bit in his chair while continuously looking me in the eye. “Son, it means that you can not be in an Infantry Unit. I will make arrangements for someone to get you reassigned. That is all.” I came back to Attention, saluted the Captain, did a left face, marched out of his office and out of the HQ. As I walked back to my billet, all I could do was wonder why I had to endure all of this training before anyone noticed my ineligibility.

It was not till much later in my life that I realized what a tremendous gift I had received that day. I escaped being assigned to an Infantry Unit in 1965, in the hight of the ramp-up of the Viet Nam War. I had received an extraordinary blessing!

Then I thought about the other times that I had been removed from harm or redirected away from danger. Some would call them miracles because there is no way to explain them scientifically. I viewed them as divine interventions in my life. All the experiences I never told anyone. When I looked at these, I could see a pattern of protection that was continuously there for me. This experience was just another in a long line that protected me in supernatural ways. If these other experiences were not present, then I think that there may be speculation as to what exactly happened that night at Fort Ord. I have communicated these experiences here in this blog. Because they exist, I must connect the dots and conclude that God has been directing my steps.

Further evidence will come in the stories that I will be publishing here. They will help in the continuation of our connect the dots initiative that will make you wonder about the mathematical probability of coming to any different conclusion? It is clear to me that only God can do the things that have described here. What is clear is that the direction of my life changed course in that short, 12-hour span.

Oh, I did eventually go to Viet Nam, but not as a part of an Infantry unit. In 1966, I was with the 618th Maintenance Company in the Central Highlands. Years later, when I was doing my research, I came to the belief that all the men in my training unit became apart of the Fourth Infantry Division. I remember watching their convoy stretching out for miles as they moved past us and on to their westward targets.

It was only a few days later that we heard the sounds of their battles. We felt the ground shaking as the bombs and shells exploded miles away. The sounds of the explosions rumbled through the air like rolling thunder through the nights. I remember lying in my bunk on one of those nights, thinking, I’m glad I am not where those boys are today. As it turns out, this Division took more casualties than any other unit in the Vietnam War.

Thant you, Lord. Praise God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit!