Snow Falling on Cedars Chapter 5
Horace Whaley, the coroner, is testifying for Alvin Hooks, describing his examination of Carl's body. He had admired the strength apparent in Carl's body jealously. He was normally a family physician, but because of his coroner work he had been exposed to many types of death. He had seen many drownings. He was a careful and observant person. Horace is able to see that Carl was breathing when he went into the water. He suddenly notices a wound on Carl's head, which looks like it was made with a stick about two inches wide, as if from a gun butt or a kendo stick (used in Japanese stick fighting.) "And the majority of Japs, Horace recalled, inflicted death over the left ear, swinging in from the right." Chapter 5, p. 56 He begins to remove Carl Heine's face, cutting through the skin and bone, to get a better look. At this time Sheriff Moran and Abel Martinson, who are back in the room, become sick. Horace knows that Art is very disturbed by this time of thing, but he thinks it is important for Art to look at the wound. They are unsure what might have hit Carl, or whether he was alive when it hit him, but Horace and Art begin to think about kendo weapons and Japanese suspects.