“…my Dad, Irby Mandrell, loved music.” As a young boy, he and his best friend, Clinton Johns, used to sing and play guitar together when they were in school. After Daddy joined the Navy, at seventeen, it put an abrupt stop to their duo.
One night while Dad was at sea, his ship was torpedoed. In the pitch black night, the ship was sinking. Men were grabbing life boats. They were trying to get up out of the freezing water, to survive. My Dad pulled a fellow sailor into the life boat. They were there all night long. With the light of day, Daddy discovered, the sailor he had rescued was his best friend, Clinton. Dad didn’t know that Clinton had also joined the Navy let alone on the same ship!
After the Navy, Dad married the woman of his dreams and they were about to have their first child. Daddy started praying because the doctor has told him that his young wife and baby would neither one survive. God sent a miracle this Christmas Eve; a doctor walked in and recognized him. Dad had been a Pharmacist Mate. This was a doctor that he had assisted in the Navy. Not only did this doctor say that he would help, he also ask Daddy to assist. Christmas Day that year, held the greatest miracle in Dad’s life. Not only did his beautiful wife and baby daughter survive, but God let him help save their lives.