Finishing high school, I wanted to study medicine. But in the USA at the time, this required money which our family did not have, so I was steered towards chemical engineering. The Second World War came along, and the US Signal corps offered some months of training in basic physics, in order to get soldiers who could understand the newly invented radar equipment.
This led to a career in physics, which I have very much appreciated since. But I have a terrible war, not my own inspiration, to thank for this.
Jack Steinberger is author of Learning About Particles: 50 Privileged Years (buy this book from Amazon (UK) or Amazon (USA)).