17x20 - The Arizona

Well, I tell you what, it is good to be home.

Just got back to port an hour ago, I've already got my land legs back.

Oh, I appreciate that, Captain, but Gloria's makingher blue-ribbon lasagne tonight.


Word is she even baked a cherry pie, so maybe she missed me as much as I missed her.

You bet.

0800 tomorrow morning, and we'll get right into...

I got to call you back.





Look, I...


Yes, that's-that's what I've been trying to say for the last five minutes, okay?


I cannot help you here, okay?

Just tell everyone, okay?

Aunts, uncles, cousins, just...

stop calling me!

Damn, that was harsh.


If I talked to my familylike that, my mom would kill me.

Yeah, it wasn't family.

Some guy, I don't even know him.

Why is he calling you?

Because peopledon't proofread.

See, last night, Aunt Lupe Garcia of Falls Church decided to send an invite to her entire enormous family to Uncle Roland'spotluck birthday fiesta, and she accidentally mistyped the RSVP number.

So now I have every Garciaand their mother calling to tell me who they're bringing and what dish.

Well, okay, next time someone calls you, you should just ask them to send out a corrected e-mail.

Aunt Lupe is the only one with the list, okay?

She BCC'd everyone else, and I can't get a hold of Aunt Lupe.

Oh, come on.


You have the wrong number.

I can't live like this.

Torres eat your yogurt again?

Uh, no, boss.

I keep getting these calls...

Grab your gear.

Uh, we got a dead body?

I don't know what we got.

Oh, got to be kidding me.

Well, if you talk to her, please have her call me at once?

Thank you.

The gentleman on the phone is Admiral Michael Caplinger.

He's head of the Fleet Forces Command.

He just got backfrom a major-level exercise, 45 days at sea.

Abductee is his wife Gloria.

She was last seen at a speaking engagement last night.

Her purse and keys are missing, but the car's in the garage.

Nothing on the intruder so far other than the broken glass, obviously, when they broke in.

Hey, Gibbs?

Canvass the area.

Find a witness.

What do you got, Bishop?

Well, it looks like therewas some sort of scuffle.

Stool's tipped over, there's blood on the floor, and the back door was open.

So, Gibbs, if the intruder forced Gloria out the door, it's possible that she was incapacitated.


I've got her.

I've got her on the phone.

Where is she?

Hold on, honey.

She's with a friend.

She didn't realize she had her phone offfrom last night, but she's okay, she's okay.

No, honey, I'm fine.


if thatwasn't Gloria's blood, whose was it?

Door's open.

And there's a note.

"I took it!" Took what?


What kind of burglarleaves a note?

What is it?

There anything missing in there?


It's a Purple Heart.

My daughter's.

Are you telling mewhoever broke in here stole thatand left everything else?

That doesn't make any sense.

Gibbs, there's some writingon the back of this.

"Stargazer Motel.

Room eight.

I'll be waiting." What is that...

Some kind of threat?


Come out slowly, your handson top of your head.

Sir, we have reasonto believe that you...

You bet your ass I did.

Name's Joseph Smith.

Write it down.

I broke intothe admiral's house, stole the Purple Heart, the whole shebang.

Uh, Gibbs?

You want me to grab him?

I don't think he's gonna outrun you, Nick.

Let's go, people.

Get the cuffs.

Haul me out.


Smith, hold on a second.

I'd like to ask you a few questions.

I bet you would.

You'd like to know where your Purple Heart is, don't you?

Well, I'm not gonna say a damn thing till I get a root beer.

Gibbs, you know the admiral.

This is his wife Gloria.


Gibbs, the Caplingers have asked for a moment of our time.

We wanted to talk to you about the Purple Heart.

It was awardedto our daughter.

Her name was Julia.

She was a first lieutenantin the Marines.

She was finishing up her last week in Afghanistan...

and she wason a patrol convoy...

Lead vehicle was hit with an IED.

Julia went to assistthe wounded.

Second IED detonated.

We're sorry for your loss.

Admiral, Mrs.

Caplinger, know that we hear you.

And if all else fails, a replacement medal will be issued.

I'll see to it myself.

Afraid it's not quite that easy.

My father wasan admiral, too, but the job that he took the most pride in was being a grandfather to Julia.

He engraved a message on the back of that medal by hand, and he passed away two months after she did.

Director Vance, that Purple Heart, it's...

it's irreplaceable.

We'll get it back.

We already have the intruder in custody.

So you have a location on the medal?

Uh, no.

Well, what's the holdup?

Suspect's 95.

I don't understand...

Is that code for something?

No, it's his age, ma'am.

Are you telling me that a 95-year-old man broke the leaded glass on my front door?

Yes, sir.

He's old, but he's not done kickin' yet.

He's smarter than a whip.

He's also a pain in the ass.

Meaning what, exactly?

Well, he demanded a root beer before he talked.



Mmm, mmm, mmm, mmm.


Smith, how-how did you get cut?

If you're gonna talk to me...

call me Joe.


How'd you get hurt, Joe?

I tripped on a stool.

The admiral needs to read a book on feng shui.

Where's the Purple Heart?

I'll tell you what, you answer my questions, and then I'll answer your questions.

What do you know about World War II?

00:08:16,583 --> 00:08:17,758 to '45.

Uh, the Axis powers versus the Allies.


What was the date of the attack on Pearl Harbor?


Too slow.


How many casualties on the U.S.S.



know it was a lot.




How many people died...

on the U.S.S.


Uh, I...

I-I actually don't know.

And you two work for the Navy?

You're a disgrace, both of you.

Get me the guy in charge.

I'm wasting my time talking to you two clowns.

Okay, let's take it down a notch.

Get that gray-haired leatherneck.

Or I'm gonna say...

"lawyer." McGEE: Listen, sir...


Uncle Frank, you have the wrong number.

Oh, and, uh, by the way, don't bring guacamole, because cousin Maria's already bringing some.


With the good chips.

You're welcome.

Hey, boss.

What do we know?

Oh, Joseph Smith.

About all he had on him was his license.

No vehicle registered to his name.

And he didn't have a carat the motel.

So he might have been on foot...

You gonna get that?


I'll let it go to voice mail.

Where's the Purple Heart, McGee?

Boss, we searched that motel top to bottom, we didn't find a thing.

What about his house?

Uh, address on his license is old.

We haven't been able to track down a current residence.

There's a ton of Joseph Smiths in the area.

It's also possible he's living with a relative.

So, long story short, we don't know where the Purple Heart is.

Did you get the guyhis root beer and just ask him?

Hey, Gibbs.

We need your help.

Joe gave us a quiz, and we failed.

Did he tell you where the medal is or not?


He said that we were a disgrace to the Navy.

Gibbs, he only wantsto talk to you.

Agent Gibbs...

Omar, don't talk to me now.

Got a place for empties?

I've got a grievingfamily upstairs.

One way or another, that Purple Heart is going back to them.

Where is it?

What do you know about war?

Look, you gotyour root beer.

You got me.

Time to talk.

It ain't about a fizzy drink.

It's about getting someone with perspective to set it down, to sit down in front of me...

and listen.

What do you knowabout war, son?

Enough to know I don't want to go back.

Well, I do.

December 7, 1941.

Attack on Pearl Harbor.

I was on the USS Arizona.

When I die, I want my ashes interred on that ship.

Any survivor of the Arizona has the right to be laid to rest there.



February '41, I enlisted in the Navy.

If you do the math...

You were too young.


was only 16.

I had an older brother.

Henry Smith was his name.

I used his birth certificateto join.

I served under his name.

But I'm telling you, I served.

Have to confirm that.

It'll take time.

Red tape means years.

I'm 95 years old.

I read an article about Admiral Caplinger.

Said he used to be commanderof the Pacific Fleet.

He attended every interment on the USS Arizona when he was out there.

That means he's got connections.

He's got perspective.

So, I wrote him, asked him for his help.

Three letters.

He never answered any of them.

He was at sea.

I want it from the admiral in writing, with his signature, saying my ashes will be interred on that ship.

Once I have that, I'll give him back his Purple Heart.

It's not the way to do it.

You see that?

I'm telling you, I was on the Arizona when those bombs hit.

And I want his word that I'll be laid to rest there.

Blackmail is not the way to get it done.

I tried to do it the right way.

Now I'm doing it my way.

On the morning of December 7, 1941, the Japanese launched a surprise attack on the U.S.

Naval base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.

Now, 15 minutes in, a Kate attack plane dropped an 800-kilogram bomb onto the USS Arizona.

It ignited a million pounds of gunpowder in a cataclysmic explosion that tore the ship apart and sunk it.

TORRES: Over 2,400 Americans diedin the attack of Pearl Harbor.

And almost half were crewmen aboard the Arizona.

I started looking stuff up, too, after Joe shamed us.


Well, this is the USS Arizona Memorial in Pearl Harbor.

That's where Joe wants to be buried?

Yeah, the wreckage of the ship is still underwater.

And any survivorof the Arizona can have their ashes placed within the ship, among their fallen comrades.

Where are we with Joe Smith?

Well, the math checks out.

Yeah, Joe, uh, turned 16 in January of 1941, and there is a record of a Henry Smith having enlisted in the Navy in February of '41 at the age of 18.

He served as an electrician's mate aboard the Arizona.

That was Joe, serving under his brother's name.

Well, actually, we're not sure which one of them that is.

The rest of the service records for Henry Smith were lost in the war.

Got a picture of the brother?


Joe said he wasn't big into pictures.

He wasn't big on his brother, either.

They were estranged, and brother Henry died in a car accident at the age of 30.

Well, put Joe's picture up.

That him or not?

Well, the bone structure is similar, but it's impossible to say for sure if that's Joe.

Almost done here, Joe.

Well, make it quick.

I didn't sign up to be prodded like a 4-H hog.

Um, you should be happy that we're trying to help you out at all.

I didn't askfor a nanny up my ass, either.

Actually, you did.

See, when you confess to a crime, you earn yourself an escort.

What's his problem?

Oh, he's been getting some annoying phone calls.

He's usually way more pleasant than this.


I mean, uh...

Well, at any rate, uh, Joe, your scars are consistent with third-degree burns that occurred a significant amount of time ago.

And the majority of Arizonasurvivors did suffer burns from the fires.

There you go.

I like this kid.

I was also ableto dig up your brother's 1953 autopsy report.

It says that he was killed instantly when his head hit the car windshield, and...

I'm sorry.

I didn't mean to...

Idiot had a few in him.

Got what was coming to him.

Well, bottom line, there's no mention of any previous scarsor injuries on Henry's body.


Thank you, my friend.

Thank you.

Wait a second.

That doesn't prove anything.

The explosion on the Arizona threw some men overboard that weren't burned at all.

What do you call that?

A rug burn?


Where are you going?


Where is he going?


Joe, listen to me.

I want to believe you, okay?

We all want to believe you.


Then tell the admiralto pull a few strings.

No, Admiral Caplinger has no real power in this situation.

This all comes down to us proving that you were on that ship.

So the best thing for you to do is tell us where the Purple Heart is.

Then we can release you and we can focus on the case.


I'm not falling for that.


I know the drill.

Old people get conned and then tossed aside.



The medal stayswhere it is as...

What do you call 'em?



Where are you even going right now?

You realize that you're not in charge here, right?

Okay, fine.

You're in charge.

You have all the leverage.

Is that what you want to hear?

I want to hear that you got some DNA proof that I was on the Arizona.

I was in the hospitalwith my burn right after.

Track down some old jarwith a skin sample.

I know how it works.

I watched CSI.

Actually, our best bet at proving it is for you to tell us everything you can remember about the attack.

I don't think so.

Look, we're out of leads here.


So any detail that you can remember about that day...

It could lead us...

I told you, I'm not talking about it.

I thought you wanted someone to sit down in front of you and listen.

I've said my piece.

Now I'm done talking.

Go get the DNA and be grumpy some place else.

Life's too short to get all out of shape over crap phone calls, you schmuck.

At home in the middle of a workday?

What you up to?

Well, I'm working.


Uh, listen, I looked at the recordings from Interrogation.

From what I can tell, Joe is hiding something.

Jack, that's who these guys are.

They hide everything.

And by "these guys," you mean World War II vets like your dad?

What do you got?

Kasie tracked down a surveillance camera outside of the motel.

Joe wasn't traveling on foot after all.

You find the cab?

Bishop's working on it.

Good chance that the cabbie might know something about what Joe did with the Purple Heart.

In order to find the medal, we got to get Joe to talk.


To prove he wason the Arizona, we got to get Joe to talk.


And according to McGee...

Joe refuses to speak at all now.

He thinks we can prove his story with DNA.

Yeah, so I heard.

Two things get my dad talk.

This is one of 'em.

A slide projector?

Something about watching memories in a dark room makes one feel safe, maybe?

Oh, yeah.

And what was the other thing that got your dad talking?

Having a job to do.


Appreciate the help.


You know, figured you being an electrician and all.

We got time to kill.

DNA doesn't work as fast they make it seem on TV.

You doing some kind of slide show for the family?


I wanted to fix it for a friend.

I was never bigon pictures.

My mom had a fewl was supposed to end up with, but she sent me to live with my uncle.

My brother was supposedto pick me up.

He didn't.

So, that's the end of that.


You're looking at me like I spent 95 years without...


I knew...


I did.

It just never, ever lasts, does it?




I did it!

I still got it.

You said you were doing this for a friend.

I am.

I'm not your friend.

What is this?

Some kind of trick to make me talk about it?

I told you to do your DNA thing.

Joe, we got nothing.

We need something to go on here.

The things I saw that day shouldn't comeout of anyone's mouth.

You've seen war.

How many people did you tellabout the worst of it?


If it was so bad, why do you want to be buried there?

Why are you asking me questionsyou know the answers to?

Just leave me alone.

What are we doing here?


I just told you.

Oh, yeah.

I wasn't listening.

I was reading about Pearl Harbor on my phone.

If that dude's gonna quiz me again, I'm gonna be ready.

Well, the guy who dropped off Joe at the motel drives cab number 6234.

Name is Kevin Deacon.

Uh, excuse me.

We're lookingfor a driver named Kevin Deacon.


Second cab is his.

He went around the corner to get some coffee.

Should be right back.

Thank you.


Aunt Lupe.

Oh, thank God you called.

Uh, I-I've been waiting...


No hablo español.


uno momento.

Tell her to send out the rightRSVP number to everyone.




No, no, no, no, es su amigo.

Ah, qué bonito.


Okay, muy bien.

El estará allí.


Be there at 6:00.

You're bringing the enchiladas.

Wait, what?

Yeah, she felt so bad about the trouble that, uh, she invited you to the party.

It'd be so rude to not show up for Tía Lupe.

That's our guy.

Hey, uh, Kevin Deacon?



You dropped offa fare this morning at the Stargazer Motel?

Someone needs to move this cab.

Hey, you got to get this out of the way!

Yes, sir, understood.

Admiral Caplinger.

He's done playing the old man's games.

He wants to press charges.

We got a lot of loose ends around here.


He ran.

We don't know why.

Actually, I have an idea.

Seems that Mr.

Deacon has a rap sheet a mile long for fraud.



Gibbs, I know that you believe Joe.

I know that you respect him.

But we have to consider the alternative.

You think he's lying.

Look, the cabbie ran as soon as he knew we were there about Joe.

This could all be some sort of a con.

Could be Joe refuses to talk about Pearl Harbor because he wasn't there.

Because his brotherwas the one I'm not buying it.

Why would he lie about that?

Stolen valor?

I-It happens all the time.

Joe and his brother were estranged.

This could be Joe's final victory in his family beef.

Or who knows?

It could befor financial gain.

What the hell are you doing, Jack?

What am I doing?

What are youdoing?

Gibbs, take a look at what's in front of us and tell me what we're doing for the victims here.

I want you to charge Joe Smith with theft, breaking and entering and obstruction of justice.

I'm not doing that, Leon.

He's not lying.

You cannot ask me to walk in there and tell him that we've given up on him.


Just because you knew your father does not mean you know Joe.

I said to leave me be.

We found the cabbie that dropped you off at the motel.

He ran from us, Joe.

You know why?

I don't know.

He know where the Purple Heart is?


Heard there might be fireworks.

You really think Joe's lying?

No idea.


You made a pretty good caseup in my office.

Yeah, well, it could allbe true or not.

Either way, Gibbs needed a push to find out.

Oh, wow.

Full house here, huh?

Hey, Joe.

Look at me.

This all some kind of con?


You thinkthis is some kind of con?

The Arizona.

Were you on it or not?

Would you like meto show you my arm again?


No, I want you to prove it to me.

You prove it!

That's your job!

Get the DNA.

There is no DNA, Joe.

You are the only DNA we have.

What's in your head?

Your story?


Anything that we can verify.

What do you think you're doing?

You say you wereon the Arizona.

What'd you see, Joe?


What'd you smell?

What'd you taste?

Damn it, Joe.

You want to go back?

There's only one way to go back.

Right now.

Was it your brother or was it you?

It was me!

I was on the quarterdeck, waiting for colors.

And then me and Ozzie O'Connor were-were gonna catch the liberty launch and toss the football on the beach.

Then I hearda plane approaching.

I looked up.

I saw the red ball on its wing, and I knew.

I ran to my battle station in the gun pit, and that's when we caught the big bomb.

It was like the devil opened his mouth and made a noise that was all screaming.

The steel!

The fire!

The men.

I got orders to go topside.

What I saw was body parts all over the deck.

Men stumbling through, no hair, no clothes...

charred to the bone.

The smell...

I threw up.

That's when the plane...

strafed us again.

My arm was screaming, like nerves exposed.

Shrapnel was hitting what was already raw.

I was loaded intoa rescue launch.

I pulled three men out of the water.

Two I didn't know.

The third...

The third was Ozzie...


He was trying to put a piece of flesh back on his face.

I remember thinking about all the times his mother must have kissed that cheek.

And how we should have been tossing a football.

Then I got hit by...

God knows what.

I fell in the water, woke up in the hospital.

I don't even know...

who rescued me.

The point is, we saved each other.

All of us.

You've been in a war.

You know why I want to go back.

Shipmates are your brothers.

More than my own blood.

A bond...

that never leaves.

I want to be laid to rest with my family.

I want to go home.

This is what you wanted, Joe.

With my signature.

When you die, your ashes will be interred on the Arizona.

But we still don't have any hard proof.

Can Gibbs really promise that?


No, he can't.


All right, then.

I'll take you to the Purple Heart.

It's back at the hotel.

I don't get it.

How could the Purple Heart be at the motel?

We searched that place, like, five times.

Well, we should'vedone it six.

We got a hit on the BOLO.

Cabbie Deacon?

Yeah, MPD picked him up for speeding.

They're holding him for us.

I'll update Vance.

Look, man, I can't go back to prison.

And what exactly were you afraidyou'd be going back for?


Deacon, the more cooperation we get here, the more a judge might understand.

Yesterday, I dropped off a fare across the street from the old man's place.

You know him?


He saw me.

He called me over.

He was outside getting some airor something.

What did he say?

He offered me 200 bucks on top of my fare to drive him around.

All I had to do was show up today, pretend to be his grandson, and...

sign him out.

Sign him out of where?

The nursing home.

That's where he lives.

I mean, they made it seem like the guy ain't doing too good, like...

he's really sick, man.

Purple Heart's right in there.

You use a screwdriver?

No, wouldn't need one.

It just popped right off.

You know, I didn't want to...

talk about that day.

But I feel like I did something that kept it from being forgotten.

You want to talk about what you saw?

Uh, it may...

make you lighter, too.


Come on.

Give it a shot, son.

It's empty.


That's impossible.

Yeah, I'm telling you, there's nothing in there.

No, I-I put it in there.

I know I s...

It was, uh...

It was just...



I put it in the safest place possible.

I was always gonnagive it back.

Sit down.




So, how is he?

It was a massive heart attack.

He's in surgery.

Well, we, uh...

we spoke to the nursing home where Joe lives.

He was being treated for coronary artery disease, and he's in the early stages of dementia.



How early?

McGEE: Nurse says he has his good days and his bad days, but he was diagnosed before he started writing letters to the admiral.

He knew the endwas coming.

He wanted to make sure his asheswere back on the Arizona.

Or maybe he was just confused.

What if Joe's memories were really just stories his brother told him?

This whole thing could just be in his head.

Hey, did you findanything?


We, uh...

we questioned Deacon again.

He swears he never saw a Purple Heart, and he said that Joe never even mentioned it.

You search the cab?

Yeah, and it wasn'tat Deacon's place either.

So Joe's the only onewho knows what he did with it, and now even he doesn't know.

Well, that mightnot be entirely true.

According to Gibbs, Joe insists that he put the medal in a safe place.

That feeling was probably real.

Yeah, well, feeling isn't really much to go on.

Yeah, he could've buried it anywhere and thought that he put it in the vent.

Or, more likely, he could've just transposed a few of the details.

You mean like maybe it was a different vent?

So, Joe knew that he removed a vent cover and put the Purple Heart inside.

We think he remembered the location of the vent incorrectly.

Well, he didn't need a screwdriver.

It's here.

Is it damaged?


It's perfect.

Thank you.

Thank you.

Hey, Gibbs.

We found it.

Joe was right.

He kept it in the safest place possible.

Never even left the house.

That's great, Bishop.

That's good work.

Uh, I'll call you back.

Agent Gibbs, we did all we could.

Unfortunately, Mr.

Smith died in recovery.

Do you know where the body should be sent?

Your hunch was right, Gibbs.

I was able to find two piecesof metal embedded in the skin beneath Joe's burns.

"Shrapnel hit what was already raw." That's exactly what Joe said.

He wasn't kidding.

Kasie was also able to determinethat one of the pieces was actually a minuscule...

It was part of a bolt, Gibbs, complete with fire damage.

There's a...

I'm sorry, Dr.


I-I got a little excited.

By all means, sir, it's all you.

So, a section of the USS Arizona'ssuperstructure is on display at the Arizona State Capitol Museum.

I made a call and I was able to convince a very nice lady to rush us a sample of one of these bolts.

It's a match.


So not only was Joe on the Arizona when it was attacked, he also has been carrying a tiny piece of the ship inside of him ever since.

I called the memorial.

They're making arrangements now for Joe's interment.

Gibbs, Joe's going back to the Arizona.


Hey, boss.

It's over there, by the door.



The longer you marinate steaks, the better they are.

Oh, no, I'm actually, uh...

I'm actually gonna use itfor enchiladas.

Yeah, Torres says that, uh, grilling 'em really brings it to the next level.

It's for that, uh, party next weekend I had mentioned.

I'm actually looking forward to going.

Yeah, well, keep it as long as you need it.


Um, boss, listen, uh, I know, uh...

I know that Joe didn'tlike me very much, but, uh, you sure you don't want meto go with you?

Oh, he liked you, McGee.

Just how those guys are.


I'm good.

Go home to your family.


All right.

Hey, McGee.


You got a minute?



What's up, boss?


I want to tell you something about Joe.

Something about me.

What I saw in Kuwait..

Before that, I was different.

It took something from me.

That's what war does.

Sometimes I think if my girls had been there when I got home, maybe they wouldn't have recognized me.

Maybe there wouldn't have been enough of me left for them to hang on to.

Maybe the best of me was gone.

You come home and you're like half a person.

The other half of you is still back there, where at least it made sense.

Where, even with the bullets and the blood and the chaos, you knew what mattered.

You knew that the guy next to you was willing to die for you and you for him.

And you look around and think...

it shouldn't take a war to make the world that simple.