A tiny twist of fate can have big repercussions – this woman owes her life to her grandfather’s metal cigarette box.

The Butterfly Effect is the name given to the phenomenon where some very small action taken in the past has an increasingly big influence on the future; the flap of a butterfly’s wings can build in significance until it becomes a tornado. Sometimes you can trace even small events back to small decisions you made earlier – if you hadn’t drunk that large cola a few hours ago, you wouldn’t have gotten stuck in line at a rest stop, and thus wouldn’t be late for your flight – but occasionally you’ll find something that altered the course of your very existence.

This was the case for Twitter user @mugi80190880, and she shared the story of this fate-bending item with her followers in an emotional thread.

“My Grandfather’s Tobacco Case
This is my grandfather’s steel tobacco case.
My grandfather was a young man towards the end of the war, and he was in the front-lines of the Japanese Army.
During a shoot-out, a bullet sped towards him… He was struck.
In that instant he thought “I’m dead for sure.”
As he lay there on the ground, he realized…he was alive.
Right then…he noticed the iron tobacco case that had been nestled in his left breast pocket.
The bullet had pierced one side of the case, and its impact had slowed so much that by the time it crossed through to the other side of the case it couldn’t breach it…All because of a layer of steel 1 millimeter (0.03 inches) thick.
After the war ended my grandpa returned home to get married, and the next year, on August 5 (the same day the atomic bomb was dropped) my father was born.
And then my father’s daughter (me) also gave birth to a son…
If it weren’t for this square of steel, just 1 millimeter thick, then none of us would even be here now. If it weren’t for the lives of those we’re connected to, or even the ones we have no connection to…
When I look at my grandfather’s tobacco case, now that more generations have no experience of when Japan was at war… I can’t help but hope those children have a future where they only experience peace. I also hope the amount of sad news will decrease, even if only a little…”

At the end of her thread, she posted a little comment about the thread itself:

“I usually only talk about silly frivolous things here, but just for today I wanted to talk about something a bit more serious.”

(She also corrected her original claim that her grandfather was shot with a cartridge case, amending it to ‘bullet’.)

The thread attracted a litany of comments from people who were touched by her tale, or had similar stories from their own grandfathers during the war time. Some even provided photographic evidence of similar certain death situations that were only averted by what they had in their breast pocket…

“Your story really moved me. I was also saved by my phone in my breast pocket, one time at work.”

Sometimes it can be nice to think back on the past to see what lessons it has for the future. @mugi80190880’s grandfather didn’t just leave them an incredible memento and an amazing story, but also a great lesson to consider even 70 years or so on.

Source: Twitter/@mugi80190880
Top image: Pakutaso
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