The FBI has released videos of two suspects, that may have participated in the Boston Marathon bombing earlier this week.
The agency is seeking help from citizens, that may have seen the suspects and anything that they may recall about the two individuals.
It is imperative that these two suspects be captured, as soon as possible to prevent them from leaving the country, if they are international terrorists or go into hiding if they are American citizens.
We should know more about these suspects, now that those there at the Boston Marathon may remember them and may have even have their photos in their cell phones.
The main thing is to get these people off the street, so they can be brought to justice, if they are the perpetrators behind the Boston Marathon bombings.
A bomb explodes near the finish line at the Boston Marathon on Monday.
The Boston Marathon is usually a cause of celebration, but two bombs exploding near the finish line turned the day into an unspeakable tragedy.
Earlier that day the Boston Red Sox had played the Tampa Bay Rays and the players heard the explosions as they left Fenway Park, after playing the traditional Red Sox game, that coincides with the Boston Marathon.
27,000 runners had converged on Boston to participate in the 117th running of the Boston Marathon. After the bombs exploded near the finish line nobody was even thinking of who won the race, but everyone was concerned about the three killed and 148 injured, according to the latest reports.
New York Times photo and overhead shot of where the two bombs exploded.
The mood of the crowd changed from euphoria as they cheered the runners crossing the finish line, to utter shock as two bombs exploded near the finish line. The reports of the injuries to those wounded in the bombings are too graphic to recount in this article. I heard some gruesome accounts of what witnesses saw in the aftermath of the bombing, but no need to detail their accounts, since the terrorists would enjoy hearing the gory details, of what pain and suffering was caused by the bombings.
Now the focus turns to who committed such a cowardly act, that led to loss of life and injuries that may force some of the injured to be crippled for life.
Is Anyone Really Safe?
This latest tragedy caused by terrorists once again reminds us of how fragile life is. People were having fun one minute and then utter chaos ensues after the bombs do their damage to innocent people, who only wanted to enjoy a day off from their work, only to have it end in such a tragic manner.
We don’t know whether international terrorists or national terrorists are responsible for yesterday’s tragedy, but we do know it was a terrorist act, whether by an organized group or one or two individuals.
There certainly was a state of fear on Boylston Street in Boston yesterday, when an idyllic day turned into a day that will never be forgotten, but never to be forgotten for the wrong reason.
United States has been the scene of terrorism in the last year or so, from those shot or killed at the Aurora, Colorado movie theater, to the students and teachers who lost their life in their school in Newtown, Connecticut and now this terrorist act on Boylston Street in Boston, Massachusetts.
Even though the theater and school murders were executed by lone gunmen they still were acts of terrorism in my book and while the bombings in Boston seem to be the work of organized terrorists we still don’t know for sure how many were involved.
What we do know is that theaters, classrooms and downtown streets are no longer safe. Is there really a safe place that can be regarded as terrorist free? The terrorists have answered that question with a resounding no.
I could point out the many places that invite terrorism, but why give terrorists ideas of how to inflict more loss of life. It is difficult to understand the mind of a terrorist, since most people may not like a situation they are in, but would never take the extreme measures, that terrorists take to inflict their will on their victims.
All we can do now is to hope that the government agencies can track down and arrest who were the masterminds, behind the tragic murders of innocent victims yesterday in Boston.
That doesn’t mean that other terrorists won’t continue to strike fear into American citizens, with other terrorist acts like the one, that was committed in Boston yesterday.
Twelve years have passed since 9/11, but the world is no safer than it was on that Tuesday morning, when terrorists ended the lives of thousands of Americans, who were on routine flights or had gone to work in downtown New York or in the Pentagon and the policemen and firemen who gave their life that day.
Life is very fragile and we learned that again, from what happened in Boston yesterday.
Just when we thought it was safe to fly again, after the 9/11 tragedy 12 years ago weapons are being allowed aboard planes. Knives with two-inch blades will be allowed on planes, along with baseball bats and golf clubs on April 25, unless the change is rescinded, before being put into effect.
Ironically box cutters still will not be allowed on board planes, even though knives can be used as a weapon just like box cutters, against passengers and flight attendants. TSA apparently thinks hijackers will never be able to enter the pilot’s cabin, due to safety measures put into place since 9/11. However, that doesn’t protect the passengers and flight attendants from being cut by knives and attacked by bats and golf clubs.
Former Transportation Security Administration chief Kip Hawley says he would also allow battle axes and machetes to be carried aboard planes. How could anyone feel safe flying, while knowing that the person in the seat next to them may be a terrorist, that is carrying a knife with them.
What will the TSA personnel checking the belongings of passengers say, when they see someone who looks like a terrorist carrying weapons? The TSA could then face discrimination charges, for not allowing possible terrorists to carry these weapons, then let other passengers board the planes with the same weapons.
I have flown only twice since 9/11 and with these lax rules on weapons I may never fly again. Have we forgotten the terror those airline passengers and crews went through on September 11, 2001? They had to helplessly watch as the terrorists used the planes, for battering rams against the World Trade Center and the Pentagon building. Those passengers met fiery deaths on those planes, when they exploded upon impact.
Allowing these weapons won’t speed up the check-in process at the security gates, since TSA officials will have to closely examine each knife, to see if it is two inches or less and to check the length of baseball bats, which can’t be longer than 24 inches.
Personally, I think the new rules are an invitation to disaster and that terrorists and criminals will take advantage, of the less stringent rules for bringing weapons aboard planes.
We can only hope the Transportation Security Administration thinks over the consequences, before implementing these changes and will rescind the changes before April 25.
Tiffany Hawk of CNN has filed this article with photos of what is allowed and what isn’t allowed under the new rules.
Joan Rivers caused a furor the other day when she said on Fashion Police ”The last time a German looked this hot was when they were pushing Jews into the ovens.” It was bad enough that would even use a joke about the holocaust, but refusing to apologize makes it even worse. She said that her husband lost his family in the holocaust, and thinks that gives her the right to crack jokes about the holocaust.
Jokes and holocaust don’t belong in the same sentence. Even if Rivers thinks it is alright to mention the holocaust in a joke it doesn’t mean Jewish people all over the world think the same way. Too many Jewish people lived in fear in basements and attics knowing that they could be found and taken on trains to Nazi death camps, for the holocaust to ever be mentioned in a joke.
The war in Germany may have ended 68 years ago this spring, but the Jewish people who were fortunate enough to escape Germany or avoid capture will never think of the holocaust as a source for humor. I still think Rivers owes an apology, but she will probably continue to think it is alright to crack jokes about the holocaust, since she seems to think she has the right to make light,of one of the most horrific times in the history of the world.
How can anyone find anything humorous about 6 million Jews being put to death? Adolf Hitler may not have killed any of these Jews personally, but he was the one ordering all Jews to be murdered. The despotic dictator was the one orchestrating the systematic killing of the Jews.
Ruth Westheimer couldn’t have found much humor in River’s holocaust joke, since both of her parents were murdered in a Nazi death camp. Robert Clary who is now 87 appeared on Hogan’s Heroes, Days of Our Lives and other soap operas was captured by the Nazis in 1942 and he was liberated at Buchenwald on April 11, 1945. He too couldn’t have been amused by the so-called joke of Rivers.
It is tough enough trying to get people to remember the holocaust, without comedians like Rivers thinking it is a great source for jokes. Anti-Defamation League had every right to protest her holocaust joke. It is sad that Rivers doesn’t think her joke is worthy of an apology.
American women soldiers could find themselves in combat situations, as early as May as the services have until then, to implement plans for using them in combat.
I may be in the minority, but am not in favor of having women in combat, especially when a husband and wife are both in a combat situation. I hate to think of kids growing up without a mother, because they died on a battle field.
Now that the Pentagon has approved using women in combat there is concern about their safety. However, there may be some cases in which a woman would react better, in a combat situation than some men. I still can’t condone a woman having her life in jeopardy.
A Los Angeles Times poll shows that those polled favored women in combat, with 66 percent favoring women in combat, while only 26 percent were against it. The following article says there was little difference in how the men and women voted in the poll.
Those 65 or older that were polled favored women in combat by 52 percent, with 36 percent being opposed. Those younger than 50 favored women in combat with 72 percent in favor of women in combat.
After reading the poll results it places me squarely in the minority. My post has nothing to do, with whether women or men make better soldiers. I just don’t like the idea of mothers and daughters being in combat situation. It is bad enough to lose a father or brother in combat, but I don’t want to think about losing my mother, if she was still alive or one of my three sisters on the field of combat. I am particularly worried about women, who become prisoners of war and subject to the mercy of their captors.
Readers are welcome to agree or disagree with me, since this is my opinion only and not those of anyone else.
This five-year period is one of the most eventful of my life, in that I went to Vietnam and started working at Town Talk in 1966, met my first wife in 1969 and married her in 1970.
1966 – The previous year 1965 had seen a lot of activity at Schofield Barracks and there were rumors floating around, that we may be sent to Vietnam. On January 17,1966 the 25th Infantry Division boarded the USNS General Walker a troop ship on the way to Vietnam. The trip took 14 days, as we traveled 500 miles a day till we reached Vietnam. Will never forget how hot it was arriving in Vietnam and drank several Coca-Cola’s back to back.
We were flown to the 25th Infantry Base in Cu Chi, Vietnam, which I never left except for one night of guarding a Catholic church on guard duty. Thankfully, it was an uneventful night as nothing out of the ordinary occurred. I was in Vietnam only four months, so a lot happened in that short time. Our outgoing artillery fire sounded like it was going right over the post office tent and it made me jump, since I thought it was incoming artillery at first.
The only time that I was in any jeopardy was when a sniper started shooting at us. We were working in the post office at the time and we jumped in our foxholes, to get out of the line of fire. We could hear bullets ricocheting off the Conex containers behind us. The thing I most remember was that some of our soldiers were walking in front of us, caught between the sniper and our foxhole. It is a wonder we didn’t see someone killed right in front of our eyes that day. After the war I learned that the Viet Cong had an elaborate system of tunnels beneath our base, so that is how the sniper was able to shoot at us from inside our own perimeter.
One time we had to load dead bodies onto a helicopter and some of the soldiers were looking inside the body bags, but I wasn’t that curious to see a dead body.
My job consisted of sorting mail, delivering mail to company mail clerks who picked up the mail for their company and selling stamps and money orders and making sure packages for soldiers were delivered. I remember the heat of Vietnam and how I was so thirsty, that I drank two 46 ounce cans of apple juice in succession. Worked out there was a rumor that a Viet Cong soldier was in the area that night. Not a good combination to be sick, from drinking so much apple juice and having to search for a Viet Cong invader. However, nothing came of the rumor and was able to recover from imbibing too much apple juice at one time. 92 ounces of apple juice was just a little too much at one time, but that is what the heat did to us over there.
Since I had only four months left in the Army, when sent to Vietnam the Army tried to talk me into re-enlisting, which I declined after about five seconds of thinking it over. I was told if I had three months left that I would have stayed in Hawaii. What a difference that one month made.
Will never forget the day in May that I left Tan Son Nhut Air Force Base in Saigon, on the way back to the United States. I felt safer as the plane gained altitude, since it was too high to be hit by ground fire. The plane stopped at Japan for a short time, but we never left the plane. We finally landed in San Francisco and were taken to the Oakland Army Terminal. I will never forget the steaks we were served, along with some very cold milk. It was such a difference from what we had to eat and drink in Vietnam. We were processed and given our discharge papers and boarded a plane in the direction of Louisiana.
Can’t remember if I was flown all the way to Esler Airport in Pineville or if I had to take a bus from Dallas. The main thing was that I was home to stay after being in the Army for most of the three-and-half preceding years.
One of the soldiers I served with in the post office wrote me and told about a mortar shell hitting our post office, about two months after I left Vietnam. The worst part is that two were killed and seven were injured in the attack. The sergeant of our postal unit was among those injured and he was awarded another Purple Heart, to go with the one he received from being hit in Korea. The thing that really hit home was that the soldier, who had replaced me was one of the two that were killed.
August of 1966 was the month that I was hired by the Town Talk to work in the composing room. I was told that I would be making more, than most new employees, but later found out I was making the minimum wage of $1.40 an hour. That came out to about $55 a week or $220 a month. Town Talk was still using the hot metal composition at the time. My first job was to work on the type dump, where I would make any corrections to any type with errors, then turn the galley around where the page makeup people could take the type to the page and insert it. It wasn’t too long before I was a page makeup person and placed photos, type and ads into the pages.
1967 – The Town Talk started printing a Sunday paper in May of 1967 and now has had a Sunday edition for the last 46 years.
1968 - This was a turbulent year in the history of the United States, as Martin Luther King Jr. and Bobby Kennedy were assassinated during the year. King would be assassinated on April 4, at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee by James Earl Ray, who would be arrested two months later. The Kennedy assassination took place at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles on June 5 and Sirhan Sirhan was arrested and remains in prison 45 years later.
Denny McLain would win 31 games in 1968. No pitcher has won more than 27 games since then.
1969 – Went to see a major league baseball game at the Astrodome and saw Hall of Famers Joe Morgan, Tony Perez and Johnny Bench in the game. Pete Rose may be added to the list of Hall of Famers someday. I remember someone opening an umbrella inside the Astrodome, as there must have been a leak in the roof, from the downpour outside the enclosed stadium. Attendance was only 12,205 due to the heavy rain. The Astros won the game 3-2 in the bottom of the ninth when rookie Keith Lampard hit a walkoff home run to win the game. Ironically, the home run would be the only home run for Lampard, in his career and he would be out of baseball after the 1970 season.
Would meet my first wife a college student at Louisiana College that fall. A year later we were married and will write more about that in the 1970 post.
1970 - Would marry my first wife at College Drive Baptist Church in Pineville, Louisiana on September 26, 1970. There were six bridesmaids, since my wife had six sisters. Sadly my best man would die later, when he was hit by a car, while going to pick up his newspaper by the highway.
By 1970 had worked at the Town Talk for four years and was earning $3 an hour now, which totaled $120 a week and $480 a month. The rent for our house was $75, but since my pay was so low the landlord allowed us to pay in two $37.50 payments.
It has been a month-and-a-half since my cancer surgery at the Michael Debakey VA Hospital in Houston. Since then I have learned I was injected with steroid, which causes meningitis and am now close to starting a 24 week chemotherapy program, to try to prevent the duodenal cancer from returning.
LBJ: The Mastermind of The JFK Assassination: By Phillip F. Nelson
I have always thought that there was a conspiracy, behind the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. After reading LBJ: The Mastermind of The JFK Assassination, there is no other conclusion in my mind, that Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson orchestrated the planning of the assassination.
Illegal Election Involvement
My thoughts of Johnson until lately were that he was a politician well-skilled, at making whatever political maneuvers necessary to win an election. He lost the 1941 election for the U.S. Senate to W. Lee Daniel, with Daniel winning by a 311 vote margin.
The 1948 Senate election was even closer with Johnson defeating Coke Stevenson by 81 votes, out of a million votes cast. A box of ballots was mysteriously found that gave Johnson the win. George Parr a Democratic boss was the one that found the mysterious ballots, which included 99.1 percent voting for Johnson. Some of the voters were dead Mexicans. Johnson knew exactly what was going on and it was just one of many times, when Johnson would resort to criminal activity, to win an election or to get illegal kickbacks.
The 1954 Senate election was won by Johnson by a wide margin, while defeating Republican Carlos G. Watson, with 84.59 percent of the vote.
Forced JFK To Choose Him As Vice President in 1960
Democratic presidential candidate John F. Kennedy had offered Sen. Stuart Symington the chance, to run as the vice presidential candidate. at the 1960 Democratic convention in Los Angeles. Johnson who wanted desperately to be the vice president, then proceeded to force JFK into choosing him as his running mate, by threatening to reveal that Kennedy had been running around with some women and had the information in files kept by FBI director J. Edgar Hoover. Kennedy had no choice but to withdraw his offer to Symington and offer Johnson a place on the ticket, though he and his brother Bobby did not want Johnson on their ticket.
It was one of the most crooked elections in the history of the United States, when John F. Kennedy was elected President of the United States. Richard Nixon, his defeated opponent refused to contest the election, even though if he had it may have revealed the extent of criminal activity in the election.
LBJ’s Hitman: Malcolm Wallace
Lyndon B. Johnson had his own personal hitman in Malcolm Wallace. When someone threatened to reveal Johnson’s criminal activity, Wallace would eliminate them, if requested by Johnson. He killed one man by shooting him in the back five times and the defense tried to say it was a suicide and Wallace was freed. The author of the book says Wallace may have been involved in as many as 17 murders, including the murder of Johnson’s own sister, who Johnson feared would disclose secrets about his criminal activity. The most shocking revelation about Wallace was that his fingerprint was found on a box found, on the sixth floor of the Texas School Book Depository building after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.
LBJ: The Unhappy Vice-President
Johnson was not a happy camper as vice president, being shunned by the Kennedy brothers. He was sent on fact-finding trips around the world, to get rid of him for an extended time. This story was not in the book, but I remember reading somewhere, that Johnson was making a speech and Bobby Kennedy forced one of his aides to tell Johnson to cut the speech short. After the aide told Johnson what Bobby Kennedy had requested, he continued to talk for another 15 minutes angering Bobby even more.
Even though he was vice president, the Kennedy brothers would not invite him to important meetings. Worst of all LBJ knew that he probably would not be able to run for president, until JFK and RFK had finished their terms as president.
Assassination Plans Started
It had to be during this time that Johnson formulated a plan to assassinate JFK and replace him as president. He pushed JFK to make a trip to Dallas. Johnson was involved in planning the route of the motorcade. He wanted Jackie Kennedy to ride with him, two cars behind the presidential limousine, but Kennedy refused the offer. LBJ wanted his enemy Senator Ralph Yarbrough to ride with the Kennedys, but that didn’t work out either.
Johnson had everything in place for him to be president. When President Kennedy and his wife Jackie started their day on Friday, November 22, 1963, they didn’t know that President John F.Kennedy would be dead that afternoon.
LBJ Hiding In The Killing Zone
The Kennedys may have not known what was about to happen that day, but Vice President Johnson knowing he was entering the killing zone and that President Kennedy would soon be shot, crouched down inside his limousine two cars behind the Kennedy, to avoid getting hit by a stray bullet. His wife Lady Bird Johnson and Senator Yarbrough were not told about the assassination, so they were sitting up and smiling and waving to the crowd. To think LBJ would put his own safety ahead of his wife’s safety tells me all I need to know about Lyndon Baines Johnson.
One mystery about that day is why the presidential limousine stopped in the middle of the gunfire that was hitting President Kennedy. Another odd thing is that Jack Ruby was seen at Dealey Plaza that day with a gun case and then would show up at the hospital and at the police station before the night was over.
There was an ugly scene at Parkland Hospital, when a gun was pulled on a doctor wanting to autopsy the body, but was overpowered as the body was taken to the airport. Another mystery is why the presidential limousine was cleaned, since it was the crime scene and it was taken to Washington and cleaned some more and wound up being rebuilt to remove any trace of evidence.
LBJ Asks Jackie Kennedy To Stand With Him For Oath
As if Jackie Kennedy hadn’t gone through enough on this day, LBJ then asked her, to stand by him as he was administered the oath of office. Johnson had now achieved his life-long dream of becoming president. Now all he had to do was cover up, what really happened on that November day in 1963.
Warren Report Whitewash
President Johnson adopted the lone nut theory, as soon as Oswald was captured. Oswald himself said he was a patsy, but Jack Ruby never let Oswald tell his story. I am amazed that Ruby was allowed in the police station, without being checked for firearms.
Ruby’s action kept Oswald from implicating any of the people, that were behind the assassination. So Ruby made it easy for the Warren Commission to issue a whitewash of a report, not including any testimony that backed a conspiracy theory.
If Johnson hadn’t become president he may have been sent to prison for criminal activity in the Billie Sol Estes and Bobby Baker scandals, since he became rich from accepting kickbacks. Matter of fact a hearing was being held in Washington on the same day that JFK was assassinated, that featured an insurance salesman named Don Reynolds, who knew that Johnson was involved with criminal activity.
J. Edgar Hoover helped the Warren Commission determine it was a lone gunman that killed President Kennedy, by holding back any information that could show, that it was a conspiracy.
Witnesses before the committee, who didn’t agree with the lone gunman theory were not allowed to have their testimony included in the report.
We may never have conclusive evidence revealed that Johnson was behind the assassination, but there is a mountain of circumstantial evidence that points only to him. He had the power, had the right connections and definitely had the motive, since he knew his dream of being president would never be realized, unless President Kennedy was eliminated from the picture.
Anyone reading this book may not be swayed to believe that Johnson planned the assassination of JFK, but they will learn the extent to which LBJ would go to have his way.
It saddens me that two of the New York City metropolitan papers chose not to mention 9/11. You would think that the New York Times would have mentioned the 11th anniversary, of 9/11, but they decided it wasn’t important as the other news of the day. However the Times had a scathing article, on their opinion page implying, that President George Bush had foreknowledge or at the least had an idea the country was in danger of a terrorist attack.
The New York Post front page from today seen above features an article about New Y0rk Jets quarterback and his romance with Eva Longoria. The only other article on the front page is about a sex scandal at a girl’s school. Where are the media’s priorities today? Do they actually think these two articles are more important, than remembering 9/11. It is a sad state of affairs that a major New York newspaper, which covered the 9/11 attacks is now acting like it didn’t happen. How soon they forget.
The New York Daily News is to be commended on devoting their front page and 11 inside pages to memorializing September 11. Sure there is other news today, but are any of those articles more important than remembering those who met a fiery death, at the hands of terrorists at the site of the World Trade Center and those that died in other planes? One plane hit the Pentagon killing both passengers and Pentagon workers, who were on the wrong side of the building making them easy targets.
Then to top it all off the NBC Today Show showed an interview with Kris Jenner at the same precise moment, that ABC and CBS and the cable news channels were observing a moment of silence. This Daily Mail article includes a lengthy article about the 9/11 snub by NBC.
Today was the height of absurdity with Mark Sanchez, Eva Longoria and Kris Jenner in the spotlight, while the 11th anniversary was being ignored by some media outlets. Have we no shame? Have we no decency? It is almost like the media thinks, after the tenth anniversary last year, that those who died tortuous deaths on 9/11 no longer matter and have been relegated to the backburner.
I can’t undo the damage caused by the media today, but I can say those that died on 9/11 should be remembered, as long as there is life on this planet.
Old time radio not only broadcast comedies, detective shows, thrillers and music programs, but also broadcast information programming like Biography In Sound, which consisted of one hour-long broadcasts about famous politicians and personalities in history.The show was broadcast from 1954-1958.
For instance you can listen to shows featuring the life of Babe Ruth, then listen to Franklin Delano Roosevelt life story. Right now I have a Connie Mack program lined up in my MP3 player to play.
Last week I listened to story of Ernie Pyle the war correspondent, who lived with American troops mostly in the European theater. The broadcast features people who remember him as a kid and as an adult.
The list of shows represents a large spectrum of authors, presidents, entertainers and even the elderly painter Grandma Moses.
Cavalcade of America was the longest running historical old-time radio show. It ran from 1935-1953. 741 episodes of the shows are available for purchase at otrcat.com
If you would rather just listen to a few free shows online you can enjoy listening to episodes like Here Is Your War, with James Gleason portraying war correspondent Ernie Pyle and telling the story of the American soldier in combat.
The list of shows at archive.org gives an idea of how many different topics are covered in the show that ran 18 years.
Mister President is a drama in which Edward Arnold portrayed a different president each week. The show ran from 1947-1953. Listeners asked to guess which president was being represented in each episode. Almost all the presidents in the series were in office in the 18th and 19th centuries.
I listened to the President James Polk episode last week and thoroughly enjoyed Arnold’s portrayal of President Polk.
Archive.org has this list of free shows to listen to. The shows can be downloaded, then uploaded into an MP3 player:
Audie Murphy who served in Europe for 27 months during World War II was awarded the Medal of Honor, plus 32 other awards by the United States and foreign countries.
Murphy was born June 20, 1924 in Kingston, Texas. He had to drop out of school in the fifth grade to support his family as a farm worker. He was a very good shot and said once, that if he didn’t shoot what he shot at that his family wouldn’t eat that day.
He tried to join the Marines, Army Air Corps and Navy, but they all said he was underweight at 110 pounds. The U.S. Army did accept him and after passing out during a basic training drill, the Army tried to send him to baker’s school, but he insisted on being assigned to an infantry unit.
It didn’t take long for Murphy to be promoted after shooting two Italian officers in Sicily, so he was promoted to corporal. Two months later he was promoted to sergeant after fighting his way out of a German ambush on the Italian mainland.
His most heroic action was when his unit only had 19 soldiers remaining out of 128 and he sent the 19 soldiers to the rear while he singlehandedly fought the Germans. Then when he ran out of ammunition, he jumped in a burning tank destroyer and starting firing on the German position. In addition, he also called in artillery strikes. Murphy then gathered the 19 remaining soldiers, as they drove the Germans from the battlefield. He had suffered a leg wound but continued fighting. His actions in this battle won him the Medal of Honor. His Medal of Honor citation credits Murphy with killing or wounding 50 German soldiers in that one battle.
Murphy joined the Texas National Guard after the Korean War began, but his unit was never called into combat.
He was a private first class when he was part of the invasion force entering Sicily in July of 1943, but by the end of 1944 he had been promoted to corporal, sergeant, staff sergeant and second lieutenant.
Starred in Movies, Television
Murphy moved to Hollywood and after struggling at first to find movie roles, was seen in 44 movies and is on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
He played a copy boy in his first movie Texas, Brooklyn and Heaven in 1948 and was seen in 33 westerns. He did play himself in To Hell and Back which was based on his autobiography by the same name. He appeared as Jesse James in A Time For Dying which ironically was his last movie before his death.
The trailer from To Hell And Back the autobiographical movie about Audie Murphy.
The highlight of his television career was when he played the title character in Whispering Smith. Only 26 episodes were filmed of the series.
To see a complete list of his movie and television appearances:
Audie Murphy also was a country music songwriter. He was admitted to the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1981. His most famous composition would be Shutters and Boards which is heard being sung by Jerry Wallace:
Jerry Wallace singing Shutters and Boards written by Audie Murphy.
Dies in Virginia Plane Crash
Murphy was flying in a private plane on May 28, 1971 with zero visibility, when it crashed into Brush Mountain near Catawba, Virginia. The pilot had 8,000 hours of flying time but no instrument rating.
He had requested before his death to have a simple headstone at Arlington National Cemetery, not wanting the customary gold leaf surrounding the headstone for previous Medal of Honor winners.
Murphy was a humble man who like most war veterans who experienced combat situations, suffered post traumatic stress upon returning from the war and worked to get special compensation for veterans experiencing it.
It was ironic that Murphy who risked his life many times on the battlefield would die on a plane, that probably shouldn’t have even been in the air.
Murphy was only 45 at the time of his death, but had more life experiences than most of us, who lived many years longer.
It is probably safe to say that Audie Murphy is the only person to have won the Medal of Honor, enshrined on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame and the Cowboy Hall of Fame.
Audie Murphy was not only the greatest American soldier who was on a battlefield, but also a humble man who never seeked to capitalize on his acts of heroism. In fact he wanted Tony Curtis to play his part in To Hell and Back.
We need to keep the memory of Audie Murphy alive for generations to come. He faced adversity as a child and as a soldier on the battlefield, but he overcame adversity to become America’s greatest war hero. America needs more men like Audie Murphy today.
Map depicts how the Marines were trapped on all sides by Chinese forces during the Battle of Chosin Reservoir in the winter of 1950.
The documentary Chosin was released in 2010, the 60th anniversary of the Battle of Chosin Reservoir in which Army and Marines units were flanked on all sides by Chinese forces which had crossed into Korea.
Not only were the American forces trapped and outnumbered, they also had to fight in the most adverse weather conditions imaginable, with temperatures as low as 40 degrees below zero.
Frostbite was common as 12,000 of the 14,000 American troops at the Battle of Chosin contacted some form of frostbite.
In addition the Battle of Chosin was fought under icy conditions with snow falling during some of the fighting.
Chinese Not Taken Seriously
General Douglas MacArthurdid not consider the Chinese a threat to the American forces, thinking they were not ready to engage in a battle with the American forces. Another officer called the Chinese “laundrymen”. The troops at the Chosin Reservoir learned that both officers were wrong and found out the Chinese were an elite fighting force, that didn’t make particularly good strategic decisions.
The sheer numbers of the Chinese infantrymen was overwhelming as wave after wave of them, encountered the trapped American troops in November and December of 1950.
One American soldier had to use an American soldier who had been killed as a sandbag in front of his foxhole. The invading Chinese soldiers were being killed by the hundreds, since they were easy targets for the gunfire from the foxholes.
Fighting a battle is bad enough by itself, but when fighting in sub-zero weather on the frozen tundra, fighting one on one with the enemy, sometimes in hand to hand combat, the battle is worse than anyone could imagine.
Heart-Wrenching Survival Stories
The survival stories by the veterans of the Battle of Chosin Reservoir are heart-wrenching. Those of us who weren’t there can’t ever began to realize what those veterans went through, but their stories of their survival gives us a glimpse into what they faced on that brutal battlefield 62 years ago.
Assuming the youngest soldier on the battlefield was 18 in 1950, that soldier would be 80 years old today. So when the documentary was filmed in 2010, the youngest veteran being interviewed would have been 78 at the time.
Some of the survivors told harrowing stories of their near-death experiences, with one veteran relating how he thought he was about to be shot and killed, but said that they didn’t want to waste a bullet on him, so started hitting him on the head with the butt of their rifle and leaving him for dead. However, he wasn’t dead and had to fake being dead to keep from being killed.
Another veteran told of being checked by medics and placed in a stack of dead bodies. He had to inform one of the medics that he was not dead and spit out the dog tags they had already placed in his mouth.
One veteran recalled seeing his sergeant killed when he was approaching a Chinese soldier and watched him fall to the ground. It was very touching to hear one of the veterans telling about asking God to let him live one more day. He had killed a Chinese soldier who had jumped into his foxhole.
Critics Say Chosin Documentary Was Pro-War
Some critics of the documentary, said it was a pro-war film. I disagree with that thinking, since these veterans did what they had to do to stay alive and help their fellow soldiers reach safety. I can’t see how anything said in the documentary could be portrayed as being pro-war. The veterans were following orders and fought a great battle under the most adverse conditions.
I think only a very small fraction of soldiers enjoy going into battle. I am not even sure if there are any that think that way. Most veterans who survived the Battle of Chosin Reservoir probably returned from Korea, knowing they had served their country well and would hope that no soldier would ever have to face what they faced.
Chinese Targeted Korean Refugees
The documentary also related that the Chinese troops targeted Korean refugees attempting to flee to safety. The film tells of thousands of refugees being evacuated on boats to safety.
The Chinese had to know these civilians were no threat to them, yet I am sure many were killed needlessly by a ruthless enemy, determined to kill as many of them as possible.
Aftermath of Battle of Chosin Reservoir
Casualty figures for the Battle of Chosin widely differ, since there is no way a completely accurate count was made under the battlefield conditions in 1950. The allied troops numbered only 15,000 and were greatly outnumbered by a Chinese force of 120,000.
Estimated total casualties during the battle show the U.S. troops having suffered 5,611 casualties with Chinese suffereing 19,202 casualties. The Chinese paid a heavy toll from non-battlefield casualites of over 28,000, which were probably mostly due to frostbite.
The documentary told about the soldiers featured in the film returning home after leaving Korea. They discussed how they couldn’t discuss their wartime experience with civilians, since they didn’t have a clue of what the veterans experienced during the war. They could only discuss the war with other veterans who had battlefield experiences of their own.
Some of the veterans dealt with post traumatic stress after returning home. One of the veterans said he had the same dream, night after night of a Chinese soldier pointing a gun at him and it saying BANG, then was bayoneted by that soldier.
Another veteran had no problems with post traumatic stress until 1993, 43 years after the Battle of Chosin Reservoir. He was asked to make a speech on his recollections of his wartime experiences. When he started preparing the speech the horrors of the war returned.
Chosin is not the kind of movie that will be soon forgotten. It leaves viewers with even more appreciation for those who served in the armed forces.
I served in Vietnam with only one close call when a sniper was firing at us, while we were in the foxhole next to our post office tent. That pales in significance compared to what the veterans of the Battle of Chosin veterans experienced.
The real heroes of war are the soldiers fighting in the trenches. The rest of us did our part, but I am quick to let people know I was not in the infantry, because those are the heroes to me, like my brother who captured some enemies during the Vietnam War.
Chosin didn’t identify the veterans telling their stories, till the credits rolled but their stories were a testament to how true patriots act in the heat of battle.
1968 and 1969 were years defined by the assassinations of Dr. Martin Luther King and Bobby Kennedy, American astronauts being the first to walk on the moon, anti-war protests at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago and the New York Jets and the New York Mets were surprise Super Bowl and World Series winners.
Super Bowl II would be won by the Green Bay Packers when they defeated the Oakland Raiders on January 14.
Mister Roger’s Neighborhood would be seen for the first time on February 19, 1968.
March 16, 1968 would be one of the low points of the Vietnam War when between 374-504 unarmed civilians were killed at My Lai by United States troops. 2nd Lt. William Calley was charged with 22 of the deaths and sentenced to life imprisonment, but only served three-and-a-half years of house arrest.
President Lyndon B. Johnson announced on March 31 that he would not be running for president in the 1968 election. His decision resulted in the Democrats only having one president elected in the next 24 years, when Jimmy Carter was elected in 1976. It would be 1993 before Bill Clinton took office as the 42nd president and he would become the first Democratic president to serve two complete terms since Franklin Delano Roosevelt.
April 4, 1968 started a year of assassinations and demonstrations, when Dr. Martin Luther King was assassinated on the balcony of his Memphis motel room. Ironically only seven days later the Civil Rights Act bill was passed by Congress, which outlawed racial discrimination, which Dr. King had been fighting before his death.
Then only two months and one day after the assassination of Dr. King, Bobby Kennedy was assassinated while celebrating a win in California primary during his 1968 presidential bid. Sirhan Sirhan is arrested for the murder of Kennedy.
If Kennedy had lived to win the Democratic nomination, he may have defeated Richard Nixon in the 1968 election. Instead Nixon defeated Senator Hubert Humphrey by half a million votes.
The Yippies led by Jerry Rubin and Abbie Hoffman would descend on Chicago and the streets of Chicago turned into a riot zone as the Yippies and other radical groups battled Chicago police, U.S. Army and National Guard, while the Democratic convention was being held.
The chaos on the streets of Chicago poured onto the Democratic Convention floor when Senator Abraham Ribicoff denounced the use of Gestapo tactics in the streets of Chicago. His remarks enraged Mayor Richard Daley of Chicago would could be seen yelling at Ribicoff.
Anti-war protesters in Chicago may have hurt their own cause. In retrospect they may have protested at the wrong convention since the Democrats were more on their side than the Republicans. The Republican convention in Miami was turmoil free, in contrast to the chaos in Chicago.
Richard Nixon would go on to defeat Senator Humphrey in the general election.
1969 was another year with many newsworthy events and January 12 of 1969 would see the New York Jets defeat the Baltimore Colts 16-7, after Jets quarterback Joe Namath had predicted the Jets would upset the Colts.
Richard Nixon would take office as the 37th president on January 20. The Beatles who had first sang in America almost five years ago would hold their last public concert on January 30.
Sirhan Sirhan admits assassinating Bobby Kennedy on March 3. Ironically seven days later James Earl Ray would plead guilty to assassinating Dr. Martin Luther King. Later that month former President Dwight D. Eisenhower died on March 28, 8 years after finishing his second term as president.
The first American troop withdrawals of the Vietnam War were made on July 8. Senator Teddy Kennedy would end any hope of becoming president, when he drove his car off a bridge on July 18, in what became known as the Chappaquiddick incident. Mary Jo Kopechne would die at the age of 28 in the submerged car.
Two days later on July 20, Neil Armstrong became the first man to walk on the moon, when the lunar module Eagle landed on the moon. It had to be ranked as one of the biggest stories of the 20th century. The first flight by the Wright Brothers in 1903 would have been another major advance in the 20th century. Their flight led to commercial flights by airlines in later years.
August 9, 1969 was a day of violence as Charles Manson followers killed actress Sharon Tate and four others. The next day August 10, they would murder Leno and Rosemary LaBianca in their home.
August 15, 1969 will always be remembered as the day the Woodstock Music Festival kicked off on Max Yasgur’s farm in Bethel, New York. The promoters were expecting 50,000 fans, but those numbers were very conservative, considering 500,000 fans showed up.
August 17 would be another deadly day, this time because of Hurricane Camille which hit the Mississippi coast killing 248 people and causing damage of $1.5 billion.
The first ATM was installed in Rockville Centre, New York on September 2, while on the same day Ho Chi Minh, leader of North Vietnam died.
The Chicago Eight trial begin on September 24 in Chicago, but was changed to the Chicago Seven, when Bobby Seale a Black Panther was sentenced to four-year sentence for contempt of court.
Another New York sports team would win a championship, when the New York Mets defeated the Baltimore Orioles in the World Series. Seven years earlier the Mets had been the laughingstock of baseball when they posted a 40-120 record in 1962.
On a lighter note Sesame Street would be seen for the first time on the National Education Network on November 10.
While 250,000-500,000 demonstrators were protesting against the war in Washington, D.C. on November 15, Dave Thomas is busy opening the first Wendy’s in Columbus Ohio.
American astronauts would walk on the moon, only four months after the initial landing, four months prior to the Apollo 12 landing. Pete Conrad and Alan Bean would both walk on the moon.
With the year drawing to a close, a draft lottery was put in place on December 1 and would be the last major event of 1969.
A quick rundown of the events in 1968-1969:
Dr. Martin Luther King and Bobby Kennedy Assassinated
Unarmed Vietnamese Citizens Killed By U.S. Troops
President Lyndon B. Johnson Announces He Will Not Run For Presidency
Anti-war protesters riot during the Democratic National Convention
Richard Nixon is elected president in general election.
Richard Nixon takes office of presidency
Withdrawal of Vietnam troops commences
Teddy Kennedy drives car off bridge in Chappaquiddick incident
Four astronauts become first men to walk on moon
Charles Manson followers kill seven in two days
500,000 anti-war protesters attend Woodstock Music Festival
Hurricane Camille kills 248 persons
First ATM installed in Rockville Centre, New York
Ho Chi Minh Dies
Chicago 7 Trial Begins in Chicago
250,000-500,000 demonstrate in anti-war protest in Washington, D.C.
Dave Thomas opens first Wendy’s
Sesame Street shown for the first time on National Education Network
Map depicting Civil War battles fought in Louisiana from Americancivilwar.com.
The March 14, 1864 battle at Fort DeRussy marked the beginning of a series of seven battles, between the Union and the Confederacy in the state of Louisiana. Union forces defeated the Confederate forces and opened the Red River to Alexandria.
It would be 25 days later before the Union and Confederates would battle next. The Battle of Mansfield was fought on April 8, 1964 after Union forces led by Major General Nathaniel P. Banks, who had traveled 150 miles up the Red River, encountered Major General Richard Taylor commanding the Confederate forces.
Banks Retreats Toward Alexandria
Taylor attacked the Union forces despite being outnumbered and Banks finally retreated back toward Alexandria. The battle marked the last victory for the Confederates in Louisiana and preceded five consecutive defeats by the Union troops, including a defeat at the Battle of Pleasant Hill on April 9, 1864.
Union troops had suffered 2,900 casualties at the Battle of Mansfield while the Confederate forces incurred had 1,500 casualties. The Confederate forces would have 2,000 casualties, which almost half the casualties of the Union forces, who had 1,100 during the Battle of Pleasant Hill.
Confederates Lose 200 Troops At Blair’s Landing
Union forces overwhelmed the Confederates at Blair’s Landing, with only seven casualties compared to 200 by the Confederates. Brigadier General Tom Green leading the Confederate forces lost his life in the battle.
Two weeks later in another crushing defeat on April 23,1864 in another battle at Monett’s Ferry, the Union forces would have 200 casualties while the Confederates suffered 400 casualties.
Banks Leads Union Forces To Victory In Mansura
It would be May 16, 1864 before the enemies encountered each other again in Mansura, where General Banks would lead a flank attack on Confederate troops that gave the Union another victory. Battlefield casualties are unknown.
The battle at Yellow Bayou would commence on May 18, 1864. The battle was the last of the Red River Campaign and ended with 360 Union casualties and 500 Confederate casualties. It was regarded as a strategic victory for the Union as their forces lived to fight another day.
For complete descriptions of every battle fought in Louisiana during the Civil War:
The following website has many photos of places in Central Louisiana, which had to do with the Civil War. There is also a possible explanation of why the Kent House survived the burning of Alexandria by Federal troops.
Burning of Alexandria
Retreating Union troops burned 90 percent of Alexandria on May 13,1864. Kent House and a Catholic church were the only prominent landmarks still standing after the savage burning of Alexandria. Father J.P. Bellier brandished a sword when federal troops attempted to burn the Catholic church, with them deciding to not kill Father Bellier or harm the church.
The federal troops helped themselves to anything they wanted, while the fires were burning. Cows ran through the streets of Alexandria along with chickens who had been scorched by the fire.
By the time the fire had subsided, there was no record of any legal transaction filed before May 13, 1864 that existed after the fire. It took 36 years before Alexandria would reach a population of 5,000 again.
For many more details of the burning of Alexandria:
Soldiers about to leave landing craft on D-Day on June 6, 1944.
The photo above makes me wonder what these soldiers were thinking, before leaving the landing craft on D-Day, June 6, 1944. Some of them would be dead minutes later, as they came under intense German gunfire from beyond the beach. They could see their fellow soldiers being shot, before they even left the landing craft.
I saw a PBS program about veterans returning to Normandy, France and telling their stories of what they experienced that day. One soldier was helping wounded soldiers, but then was hit himself several times. He had just told another soldier that he was too weak to help with the wounded soldiers and at that moment the other soldier was hit by a bullet that went in one side of his head and exited on the other side.
He assumed the soldier had died, but he encountered him at an Army reunion later and saw the man and his wife there. He told him that he thought he was dead and the other soldier thought the other soldier was dead. So both soldiers, had thought the other soldier was dead, when in fact both had survived their wounds from D-Day.
A 18 year old soldier on D-Day would be 86 years old today. The 70th anniversary of D-Day will be held on June 6, 2014. Any soldier that was 30 or older that day, probably would have died by that date.
Even though President Roosevelt had declared war on Germany on December 8 of 1941, it would be two-and-a- half years before American forces entered the European theater.
The French civilians on the program today, are still thankful for the Americans freeing them from German rule. They spoke of passing the torch to each generation of the French people, to let them know that the American soldiers, were the reason that they regained their freedom.
Hitler’s harebrained military plans, enabled the Americans to gain inroads to other French cities, since he had 157 divisions on the Russian front, while having only 59 in France.
13,000 American paratroopers were dropped from the sky, as part of the D-Day invasion, but the paratroopers were very fragmented and only 2,500 of them had joined up with their units, 24 hours after being dropped. One of the veterans on the PBS special said they wrapped up dead American paratroopers in their parachutes and buried them.
The allied forces were outnumbered 380,000 to 175,000 but still they still won the Battle of Normandy. Allied casualties at Normandy totaled close to 10,000 with 2,500 making the ultimate sacrifice for the allied forces.
Words can’t express our gratitude for the soldiers, who stepped out of their landing craft, facing death immediately and those that survived the onslaught at the beach, as they began their trek through France, as they liberated the French people, from the clutches of Adolf Hitler.
It is hard to comprehend that 48 years have passed, since President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas on Nov. 22, a Friday morning that will live forever in history. I was subbing for the company postal clerk, who was on vacation, for the 25th Administration Company of the 25th Infantry Division at Schofield Barracks, Hawaii on that date and was the first to tell the company commander about the president being shot, after hearing the news on the radio. Meanwhile the regular postal clerk was flying military standby back to the mainland. He was trying to make a connection to New York City, from California, but was routed to Dallas, Texas of all places, arriving there about the time of the assassination.
Reading Warren Commission Report
I had a copy of the Warren Commission Report, that I had never really read until this last week. President Johnson commissioned the report a week after the assassination.
President Johnson was eager to have the Warren Report released, as soon as possible, to avoid having it contain any conspiracy theories, that might create doubt among the American public.
There is plenty of circumstantial evidence, that makes it appear that Lee Harvey Oswald fired the rifle, from the six floor window, of the Texas Schoolbook Depository building. Some witnesses on the ground reportedly saw a figure holding a gun, but as far as I know, nobody identified that figure as being Oswald. It is doubtful anyone could see someone inside a sixth story window, then be able to identify that person, since only their arms and the gun would be seen.
I am not saying that Oswald didn’t fire the shots, that killed President Kennedy and also wounded Texas Governor John Connally. He just appeared to be the one most likely to have fired the shots.
Lee Harvey Oswald: Portrait Of An Assassin
Lee Harvey Oswald had all the credentials of an assassin. He was a loner, that was an activist in liberal causes. He was a frustrated individual, who never really fit in with most political groups. He was living in Russia, thinking he had found a better way of living, but left when he saw their government didn’t care about the little people like him.
It wasn’t until after the assassination, that it was found out, that Oswald had attempted to shoot General Edwin Walker in his Dallas home on May 10, 1963. This shooting and the Kennedy assassination, proved that Oswald would just as soon shoot a conservative like Walker as well as a liberal like Kennedy.
By now everyone knows, that Oswald who never had a driver’s license told his co-worker Wesley Frazier, that he needed to go to Irving, Texas to pick up some curtain rods. He normally went to Irving on Fridays, but he needed those “curtain rods” for work on Friday, ostensibly to kill the president of the United States. Everyone also knows now, that those “curtain rods’ turned out to be the Mannlicher-Carcano rifle found inside the sixth story window, of the Texas Schoolbook Depository building.
Why was Oswald in Mexico City two months before the assassination? It is still a mystery, to my knowledge, what he was doing in Mexico City. It is known that he was trying to secure a visa to Cuba through the Cuban embassy, but there is little record of what he was actually doing in Mexico City. There are even reports that another individual, had used Oswald’s name, during the time he was in Mexico City. If there was a conspiracy, this may have been where it was planned.
Patrolman M.L. Baker was in the Texas Schoolbook Depository, looking for the shooter, when he encountered Oswald in the lunchroom. Oswald from the reports I have read, showed no signs of being under duress, while Baker was holding a gun on him. His coolness in that situation sealed the fate of both Officer J.D. Tippit, who would be killed less than an hour later, when he stopped Oswald on a Dallas street. If Oswald had exhibited any fright or seemed to be in distress, it is likely that Patrolman Baker would have arrested him in the lunchroom.
Oswald would have been without a weapon and presumably would have been taken to the police station without incident. However, Oswald may have tried to take the policeman’s gun, which could have been deadly.
There are so many incidents that day that could have changed history. Officer Tippit could have just as easily killed Oswald, instead of being gunned down himself by Oswald. That would have prevented the circus that ensued at the police station, after Oswald was arrested at the theater. History would have changed if Officer Tippit had stopped Oswald before he had a chance to receive his gun from the North Beckley residence.
Oswald allegedly fired his first shot at President Kennedy at 12:30 PM Dallas time. He encounters Patrolman Baker in the lunchroom and is leaving the Texas Schoolbook Depository by 12:33 PM. The building is reportedly sealed at 12:48, enabling Oswald to make his getaway. President Kennedy arrives at Parkland Hospital at 12:38 PM. Dallas Police homicide chief, who is awaiting the arrival of President Kennedy calls at 12:51 to ask if Kennedy is still coming to the Trade Mart for the luncheon in his honor, but is told it is very doubtful and in reality, Kennedy was dead nine minutes later.
By 1:00 Oswald has killed Officer Tippit and is seen entering the Texas Theater, while President Kennedy is being pronounced dead at that same minute.
Dallas police car #207 honks horn twice outside the Oswald house. This doesn’t sound very believable, so may not have even happened. Since when do police warn a criminal that they are outside their house?
The following timeline gives an interesting look at the events of that day. However, it can’t be taken too seriously accuracy wise, as it has Oswald arriving at the Texas Theater, ten minutes before Officer Tippit is found dead in the street, which doesn’t sound right to me.
Rose Cheramie was en route to Dallas with some other criminal types and said this about her reasons for being in Dallas:
“She said she was going to, number one, pick up some money, pick up her baby, and to kill Kennedy.” (p. 9 of Fruge’s 4/18/78 deposition)
While at the hospital Cheramie predicted the precise moment the assassination would take place:
At the hospital, Cheramie again predicted the assassination. On November 22nd, several nurses were watching television with Cheramie. According to these witnesses, “…during the telecast moments before Kennedy was shot Rose Cheramie stated to them, ‘This is when it is going to happen’ and at that moment Kennedy was assassinated. The nurses, in turn, told others of Cheramie’s prognostication.” (Memo of Frank Meloche to Louis Ivon, 5/22/67. Although the Dallas motorcade was not broadcast live on the major networks, the nurses were likely referring to the spot reports that circulated through local channels in the vicinity of the trip. Of course, the assassination itself was reported on by network television almost immediately after it happened.) Further, according to a psychiatrist there, Dr. Victor Weiss, Rose “…told him that she knew both Ruby and Oswald and had seen them sitting together on occasions at Ruby’s club.” (Ibid., 3/13/67) In fact, Fruge later confirmed the fact that she had worked as a stripper for Ruby. (Louisiana State Police report of 4/4/67.)
There is reportedly no mention of Cheramie in the Warren Report. You would think someone who accurately predicted the moment President Kennedy would be shot, would be taken more seriously by the Warren Commission, but then that would back up the conspiracy theorists, which the Warren commission avoided at all costs.
It is not so much a matter if Oswald shot Kennedy but more of a matter, of was he aided by a conspiracy. Kennedy had a myriad of enemies, who wanted him dead. They included the unions, mobsters, Castro, KGB, possibly the CIA who were peeved at Kennedy for withdrawing air support for the Bay of Pigs Invasion. Even President Johnson has been mentioned as someone, who would like to see Kennedy dead, since he had the most to gain (the presidency). One online report even states that Oswald was seen at Johnson’s ranch in Mexico. That may be a false report, but worth looking into.
Jack Ruby Becomes Prosecutor and Jury, Killing Oswald
Dallas nightclub owner Jack Ruby, showed up at the police station on the Friday night of the assassination, to see the Oswald press conference. Ruby became emotionally distraught over the death of Kennedy and decided the American people would never have the chance to know if there was a conspiracy, behind the assassination of Kennedy.
Ruby singlehandedly started a wave of books about the assassination, since Americans would never know about any conspiracies, since Oswald was dead and dead men tell no tales.
Hundreds of books have been written about the assassination. The Warren Commission Report has focused on proving that Oswald was the lone gunman in Dallas 48 years ago. They seemed to have glossed over any conspiracy theories. Oswald was a very shady character, who was all over the place and may have been covering up for some sinister group of conspiracists.
It is still a mystery of how Ruby was in the basement of the Dallas Police station on Sunday, November 24 and how he got in there. He reportedly arrived in the basement a couple of minutes before Oswald was to be moved to another facility.
Ruby said he killed Oswald, because he hated that Jackie Kennedy would have to return to Dallas for the trial of Lee Harvey Oswald.
I am not saying that the Warren Commission was a complete cover-up, but it seemed to be intent, on promoting the lone gunman theory. By not admitting a conspiracy was possible, it took a lot of the enemies of Kennedy off the hook, including the new president Lyndon B. Johnson, who was relegated to being a do-nothing vice president, until Kennedy’s death, propelled him to the presidency.
He was no longer the second banana to President Kennedy and his inner circle. The only reason Kennedy chose Johnson as a running mate, was so that he could garner some southern votes, attracted by Johnson being on the ticket as vice-president.
After 48 years, there is still no smoking gun that I know of that points to anyone besides Oswald being the assassin. I have heard for years about shots coming from the grassy knoll, but don’t think it is even mentioned in the Warren Report.
There are a lot of what-ifs that came into play on November 22, 1963:
What if it had rained that day and the bubble-top would have been down, ruining any chance of any assassin shooting the president?
What if Patrolman Baker would have arrested Oswald before leaving the schoolbook depository, which would have saved the life of Officer Tippit?
What if someone had walked in on the shooter from the sixth floor window seconds before the first shot?
What if the Dallas Police department had kept the crowds under control at the police station, during the interrogation of Oswald?
What if someone had stopped Ruby from entering the basement of the police station?
What if someone had taken Rose Cheramie seriously and prevented the assassination?
JFKLancer.com has some very interesting observations about what the Warren Commission Report failed to tell the American people:
Our nation was in a state of shock and disbelief, after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Americans didn’t know if these attacks would be followed by other attacks.
Nobody really knew what to expect at the time. I don’t think anyone expected, that we would be safe from terrorist attack,for the next ten years.
When Osama bin Laden’s computer was seized after he was killed in Pakistan, it was found to mention upcoming terrorists attacks, that were to be carried out on the tenth anniversary of 9/11.
So while we were commemorating the attacks, on the tenth anniversary, we were also wary of another attack ten years later, but it never happened.
The American intelligence community deserves praise for keeping our nation safe from terrorist attacks during the last 10 years. I am sure there have been some close calls, that were never revealed to the public, to avoid alarming our citizens.
We can never be complacent though, since the terrorists may strike again, if we revert to our lax security that was in place on 9/11. Airport security since 9/11 has been ratcheted up and has received some criticism, for being too invasive. However, as much as we dislike the stricter measures, taken by airport security, it does make it safer to fly.
It remains a mystery 10 years later to, how 19 hijackers could have boarded planes, in American airports the morning of September 11, 2001. If there had been patdowns, then the boxcutters may have been found, that they used as weapons aboard those flights.
However another mystery is how the box cutters got by airport security. It seems like they would have sounded the buzzer, at the checkpoint causing the boxcutters to be found.
We may be having to wait longer to get through the checkpoints, but it is much better than being on a plane, that has been hijacked and that is being flown into a building. It is questionable whether the passengers on those flights, should have been told by relatives and friends, that planes had already flown into other buildings.
It was bad in that the passengers had to be scared beyond belief, but on the other hand it is probably what saved Flight 93 from hitting the White House or the Capitol Building. We will never know if those were the next targets, but those were likely targets.
Nothing would have been more dramatic, than a plane hitting the White House with almost full tanks of jet fuel, especially if President Bush had been in the White House. If not for cell phones being widely used even back in 2001, the passengers aboard Flight 93 would not have known, that the other planes had already hit the Twin Towers and the Pentagon. That knowledge is what caused the passengers to storm the cockpit, causing the plane to crash in Pennsylvania.
We should have known when the terrorist pilots were attending flight schools, that for them not to be worried about landing the planes was a major red flag.
President Bush and President Obama both have been targets of criticism during their presidencies, but both presidents have put in place intelligence gathering agencies, that have prevented another 9/11 attack.
We must be ever vigilant though and plan on the terrorists planning future attacks. It may not be the same type of attacks, but we can’t be too careful, since good intelligence saves lives and bad intelligence puts our nation at jeopardy.
Mr. Acker Bilk playing Stranger on the Shore, the No. 1 hit of 1962.
I can remember the posters for American Graffiti, like the one pictured that asked the question Where Were You in 62′?
My memories of 1962 include walking the halls of Pineville High for the last times that summer, as I took English IV again in summer school so I could receive my diploma that September. It was my third and last encounter with summer school.
The class of 1962 will be celebrating our 50th reunion next April. Just the thought of 50 years passing since I walked out the door of Pineville High School for the last time as a student in 1962 tells me I am getting older much faster than I really wanted to.
It also reminds me that music has changed since then. Can you imagine a clarinet solo by Mr. Acker Bilk being No.1 on the Hot 100 chart today, like Stranger on the Shore was in 1962?
It even charted higher than the No.2 classic I Can’t Stop Loving You sung by the great Ray Charles.
Mashed Potato Time and The Loco-Motion charted No.3 and No.7, but No.9 The Twist by Chubby Checker is the song we will remember most from that year. Checker was 21 in 1962, but will be 70 next month.
Checker would also have the No.17 hit Slow Twistin’ in 1962. Many songs released in 1962 had the word twist or a variation of twist in the title including these songs:
No.23 Twistin’ the Night Away – Sam Cooke
No.25 Peppermint Twist – Joey Dee and the Starliters
No. 32 Dear Lady Twist – Gary and the US Bonds
No. 38 Twist and Shout – Isley Brothers
No. 87 Percolator Twist – Billy Joe and the Checkmates
No. 88 Twist, Twist Senora – Gary and the US Bonds
No. 89 Twistin’ Matilda and the Channel – Jimmy Soul
No. 92 Soul Twist – King Curtis
Ten songs or ten percent of the Top 100 songs, had to do with the new Twist craze.
It was a great year for ballads too with such standouts as Roses Are Red, Break It To Me Gently, Ramblin’ Rose, Love Letters, You Don’t Know Me and Town Without Pity.
The Beach Boys had one song in the Top 100 list which was Surfin’ USA at No.100, but it apparently had just been released, because it topped out at No.3 the next year. Surprisingly, the Beach Boys only had four No.1 hits during their career.
Ahab the Arab was the best known novelty song of the year, having been released by Ray Stevens.
Green Onions which was recorded by Booker T. and the MG’s to me was one of the best instrumentals ever to be released came out that year along with instrumentals, like Moon River by Henry Mancini and Walk on the Wild Side recorded by the great jazz organist Jimmy Smith.
The list below will take the readers down memory lane. It was a great year for music.
It was October 12 of 1962, when I started basic training at Fort Polk, Louisiana. My first memory is of a soldier from Wardville a suburb of Pineville, Louisiana yelling out a second story window, to a sergeant below “Hey nutbrain”. The sergeant set a new record for climbing the stairs that day, telling the private in no uncertain terms, that that was not the proper way to address someone higher ranking than him. The infiltration course was the least fun of all, not to mention taking our gas masks off in a gas-filled room, so we would know what it was like to experience it.
If there was enough reason to take the basic training seriously before, there was even more now, because we were training during the middle of the Cuban missile crisis.
This is one of the songs we sang as we marched:
“I don’t know but I believe, I’ll be in Cuba by Christmas Eve”
The ten-mile hike and bivouac was not exactly a bed of roses either. It had been hot when we first arrived, but by the time the bivouac came around, it was brutally cold sleeping in a tent in December.
The best part about basic training was when the family visited one Sunday, having made the trip from Pineville to see me.
1962 had started with the final semester starting at Pineville High School in January, receiving my diploma in September, then starting basic training in October, which ended in December.
The year ended with me visiting home, for Christmas and New Year’s Day. 1963 would bring being stationed in Indianapolis, Indiana to start the year, staying there till April at the Adjutant General’s postal school. Then in May my three-year enlistment started, after deciding to re-enlist rather than go to Army Reserve meetings for several years.
Early in June of 1963, I arrived in the tropical paradise of Hawaii, not knowing that I would board the troop ship the USNS General Walker on a 14 day trip, to another tropical paradise in Viet Nam two-and-a-half years later. The only problem was that the inhabitants of this tropical paradise, didn’t appreciate visitors with M-14′s and tanks.
Jackie Kennedy with President John F. Kennedy in background.
Jackie Kennedy reveals in the book ”Jacqueline Kennedy: Historic Conversations on Life with John F. Kennedy,” that she wanted to die with her husband, President John F. Kennedy during the Cuban missile crisis of October 1962. She said she would rather die with him, than to leave Washington for safety.
It was clear that Jackie was a devoted wife and mother, since she would rather the family die together, than being separated at death. Her statement also reflects the seriousness of the situation, during the Cuban missile crisis. Crisis is the right word, since nobody knew how the crisis would end, until Russian leader Nikita Khrushchev ordered the missiles dismantled and returned to Russia.
The 400 page book published by Hyperion will be released on Wednesday, September 14 along with a 8 CD set of audio discs.It is already #4 in sales at Amazon, two days prior to the release.
Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr. conducted the interviews with Jackie, starting in March of 1964, just a few months after the assassination of her husband. The taped interviews weren’t to be released for many more years. However, Caroline Kennedy, gave her consent for them to be published, in connection with this year being 50 years. since President Kennedy took office.
Jackie Calls Martin Luther King “Phony”
One of the revelations during the interviews, was that Jackie considered Martin Luther King a phony, since surveillance caught him contacting women for dates.
She had short descriptions for many other world leaders and politicians:
Charles DeGaulle, the French president: “That egomaniac”.
Indira Ghandi, future prime minster of India: “a real prune — bitter, kind of pushy, horrible woman.”
Reveals JFK’s Thoughts on LBJ, FDR
Jackie says that JFK thought of his vice president Lyndon B. Johnson this way, “Oh, God, can you ever imagine what would happen to the country if Lyndon was president?” And Mr. Kennedy on Franklin D. Roosevelt: “Charlatan is an unfair word,” but “he did an awful lot for effect.”
She had this to say of why women liked Adlai Stevenson: She suggests that “violently liberal women in politics” preferred Adlai Stevenson, the former Democratic presidential nominee, to Mr. Kennedy because they “were scared of sex.”
Of Madame Nhu, the sister-in-law of the president of South Vietnam, and Clare Boothe Luce, a former member of Congress, she tells Mr. Schlesinger, in a stage whisper, “I wouldn’t be surprised if they were lesbians.”
It was quotes like the last one, that prompted these interviews to be kept secret for 47 years.
Assassination, Extramarital Affairs Not Mentioned
Not surprisingly, there is no mention of the assassination or any extramarital affairs, that her husband was involved in. Jackie does reveal that her husband shed tears, over the Cuban missile crisis. That is only natural, considering the magnitude of the crisis, that could have ended in a nuclear war, but instead ended with the removal of the missiles from Cuba.
Listen to Jackie Kennedy In Her Own Words
These tapes let you hear in Jackie’s own words what it was like during the Cuban missile crisis, telling how she convinced her husband the president to not send her to a safe place.
This book should sell well with the enormity, of the curiosity of both fans of Jackie and her husband the president, but also should receive interest from their enemies who may be mentioned in the book. Jackie Kennedy, however transcends partisan politics and this book should interest those,of all political persuasions.
Puerto Rican nationalists being held by police after shooting five members of Congress.
Four Puerto Rican nationalists entered the U.S. Capitol on March 1, 1954, four years after other nationalists had tried to assassinate President Harry Truman at Blair House.
The nationalists proceeded to the gallery and started shooting at the members of the House of Representatives, from the gallery. They started firing at the representatives and five of them were injured including Alvin M. Bentley (R-Michigan), Clifford Davis (D-Tennessee), Ben F. Jensen (R-Iowa), George Hyde Fallon (D-Maryland) and Kenneth A. Roberts (D-Alabama).
Lebron only pointed her pistol at the ceiling, since she didn’t want to hurt anyone but eyewitnesses said she had problems holding the gun steady and it jerked upward, while Figueroa’s pistol jammed, so Miranda and Flores were the only two shooters to hit the representatives.
The four nationalists shooting at the representatives were Lolita Lebron, Rafael Cancel Miranda, Andres Figueroa Cordero and Flores Rodriguez.
President Dwight D. Eisenhower commuted their death sentences, with each assailant being sentenced to 70 years in prison. Figueroa Cordero was the first released in 1978 due to having terminal cancer. President Jimmy Carter released the other three in exchange for Cuba releasing CIA agents being held in Cuba. However, Carter denied this which makes it a mystery why he would release the attackers after only serving 25 years of a 70 year sentence.
It is hard to believe that the four attackers could walk into the U.S. Capitol with firearms without being detected, but this was before it was common to have metal detectors in government buildings.
Cordero asked to be immediately executed after being brought to court, but that request was denied.
President Truman was living in Blair House when Puerto Rican nationalists tried to get past security guards to assassinate Truman.
President Harry S. Truman was living in Blair House in 1950 while parts of the White House residence of the president were being rebuilt due to structural problems.
It is clear to see in the photo above, that Blair House was not close to being a secure residence, like the White House. It was at this time that Puerto Rican nationalists were upset that Puerto Rico was a territory, while they advocated the independence of Puerto Rico.
Puerto Rican Nationalists Decide To Assassinate Truman
Griselio Torresola and Oscar Collazo were two activists in the nationalist movement. They had met in New York City and when Torresola’s sister (unnamed) and Elio the brother of Collazo was arrested in a failed uprising in Puerto Rico to gain independence for the nationalists.
This is when Torresola and Collazo decided to assassinate President Truman, in an attempt to spotlight attention on the Puerto Rican nationalist movement. They watched the activity around Blair House before making their assassination attempt.
Oscar Collazo walked up the steps and attempted to shoot White House Police Officer Donald Birdzell in the back, but he had failed to cock his handgun, pulled the trigger again and shot Birdzell in the right knee as Birdzell turned around to face Collazo. Secret Service Special Agent Floyd Boring and White House Police Officer Joseph Davidson joined the fray, opening fire on Collazo with their service revolvers.
Then Griselio Torresola, who was walking down Pennsylvania Avenue toward Blair House, spotted an officer Leslie Coffelt inside a guard booth and shot him four times with his German Luger pistol which would eventually kill Coffelt.
Torresola then saw Joseph Downs, a White House plainclothes policeman and shot him three times. Downs still was able to get inside Blair House and slammed the door preventing Torresola from entering Blair House.
Then Torresola saw his partner Collazo, about to be shot by Donald Birdzell, so he shoots Birdzell in his left knee, crippling Birdzell who had been shot in his right knee by Collazo.
President Truman Only 10 Yards From Shooter
President Truman awakened by the shooting from a nap, did an incredibly stupid thing, by opening his bedroom window. He was only 10 yards from Torresola at the time.
This assassination attempt has been more or less forgotten 61 years later, but for one day in November of 1950 the President of the United States could have easily been killed, if one of the shooters had noticed him looking out his bedroom window 10 yards from the shooter.
Officer Leslie Coffelt was shot and killed by Griselio Torresola but Coffelt would later kill Torresola before dying four hours later.
Officer Coffelt who had been shot earlier in the guard booth by Torresola fired and hit him killing him instantly. Coffelt died four hours later so Torresola and Coffelt killed each other.
Collazo was arrested and sentenced to death but President Truman commuted his sentence to life imprisonment. President Jimmy Carter commuted his sentence to time served and Collazo was returned Puerto Rico to live 15 more years before his death in 1994.
This assassination attempt has been more or less forgotten 61 years later, but for one day in November of 1950 the President of the United States could have easily been killed, if one of the shooters had noticed him looking out his bedroom window 10 yards from the shooter.
George Wallace shown after being shot on May 15, 1972.
Governor George Wallace was shot on May 15, 1972 on a campaign stop in Laurel, Maryland when he was running for president. He had drawn 42 percent of the vote in the Florida primary earlier in the year, leading each county.
Arthur Bremer fired five shots into Wallace which ended the hopes of Wallace winning the presidency. Bremer had earlier been leading cheers for Wallace, which apparently was a ruse to get close enough to Wallace to fire the shots, including one which was lodged in his spinal column.
Governor Wallace was forced to live the rest of his life in a wheelchair after the shooting.
Bremer, who will be 61 in August received a 63 year sentence for the assassination attempt but it was reduced to 53 years and he only served 35 years of the sentence before being released in 2007.
Arthur Bremer shot Governor George Wallace five times forcing him to live in pain the rest of his life.
Arthur Bremer lived a troubled life as a youngster and was a loner who kept to himself in school. His story helped inspire the screenplay for the movie Taxi Driver as mentioned in this paragraph from Wikipedia:
Governor Wallace won the Maryland and Michigan primaries but eventually left the 1972 presidential race and made another attempt at the presidency in 1976 which did not go as well because of him being handicapped.
Despite being confined to a wheelchair Governor Wallace who was 53 at the time of the assassination attempt, would finish his term as governor and be re-elected to a third term that ended in 1979. He later would win the governorship again in 1982 and served from 1983-1987 for his fourth and final term.
Wallace would live 27 more years after the assassination attempt, dying at the age of 79 in 1998 in Montgomery, Alabama.
May we remember on this Memorial Day of 2011, the soldiers who have died in defense of America, from the Revolutionary War to the current wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
I would like to remember my cousin James Walter Godfrey from Maine who died piloting a helicopter in Vietnam and the two soldiers who I worked with in Army post office in Vietnam, who were killed by a mortar shell attack, two months after I had left the country.
It is a sobering sight to see their names on the Vietnam War Wall online website, but would like to see their names in person someday on the Vietnam Wall in Washington, D.C.
We have all seen the military homecomings at airports across the United States. However, the new TLC reality series Surprise Homecoming will be showing surprise military homecomings starting with a sneak peek on Monday, May 30 at 10PM ET and will be seen regularly sometime in June.
The surprise element is what will make these shows even more special than a normal homecoming by men and women in the service.
I look for this show to be very popular and can’t wait to see the first episode.
Billy Ray Cyrus will be hosting the series and I can imagine how it must be for these families to have their loved ones return unexpectedly.
It is ironic that Elvis Presley wrote a letter to President Nixon, to set up a meeting at the White House, so the president could declare Presley a federal agent in the war against drugs.
The meeting was held on December 21, 1970 and Presley was designated a federal agent at large in the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs.
The irony comes in, when Presley becomes a drug addict himself, which led to him dying in August of 1977 from an apparent drug overdose.
In the time between the meeting and his death Presley had become a drug addict of the worst magnitude.
After the meeting President Nixon thanks Presley for the gift of a Colt .45 in a letter written to Elvis. However, the president did not sign the letter but had his name stamped at the end of the letter.
Presley mentions in one of the documents that the Beatles came to United States, earning a lot of money, then returned to England taking an anti-American stand. It is clear that Presley disliked the Beatles from his comments about them. After all his career took a hit when the Beatles led the British invasion that changed the American music scene.
The following article from the National Archives documents the meeting between President Nixon and Elvis Presley. There are eight documents and 26 photos commemorating the meeting at this website:
After reading these documents, it is sad to think of what happened to both participants of this meeting. Less than four years later the Watergate scandal would threaten President Nixon with impeachment, thereby causing him to resign from the office of president in August of 1974.
Less than seven years later, Elvis would die at the young ago of 42. It is sad that Elvis instead of fighting drug use, became a user himself, ending his life way too soon.
General Walker was in his home when Lee Harvey Oswald attempted to shoot him seven months before John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas.
General Edwin Walker was a controversial conservative who commanded combat troops in World War II and the Korean War.
He was arrested by the federal government after making some inflammatory remarks when James Meredith was the first black admitted to the University of Mississippi.
General Walker was charged with insurrection and sedition, plus two additional charges.
Lee Harvey Oswald attempted to kill General Walker on April 10, 1963, seven months and 12 days before he allegedly assassinated President John F. Kennedy during a motorcade in Dallas from the sixth floor of the Texas School Book Depository.
The Warren Commission Report said Oswald was the sole killer of JFK, but Oswald never faced trial since he was killed two days after the assassination by Jack Ruby.
If Oswald had killed General Walker, he probably would have been apprehended and arrested, but he never was formally charged with the attempted murder of Walker.
We do know that Oswald admitted to his wife Marina that he did shoot at Walker. If Oswald had been behind bars on November 22, 1963, it is likely that John F. Kennedy would have lived to finish his first term and possibly be elected to a second term.
JFK was 46 at the time of his death and would be 94 this month if still alive. However, if there was a conspiracy and Oswald was only a patsy to take the blame for the assassination, while someone else did the actual assassination, it would not have mattered if Oswald was behind bars.
November 22nd of this year will be the 48th anniversary of the assassination. Though the Warren Report claims Oswald was the killer, I still not fully convinced that he acted alone.
Even an 18 year old that was in Dealey Plaza that fateful day will be 66 this year, while a 40 year old that day would be 88 this year. So time is running out on any witness that might refute the Warren Report and prove it was a contrived effort by the U.S. government point the finger at one man, rather than a government of any country.
Just a few of the people and organizations that have been mentioned as the ones behind the assassination are:
Lyndon B. Johnson (who didn’t like playing second fiddle to JFK)
Cuban refugees (who didn’t like the way JFK handled the Bay of Pigs invasion and reportedly asked for less air support which halved the 16 planes being used in support of the Cuban invaders down to eight planes. Then after the invasion failed JFK pointed at the CIA for being the reason the invasion didn’t work, while he was the one that wanted less air support for the invasion. He fired several top CIA officials, including the director Allen Dulles after the invasion failed.)
E. Howard Hunt of the CIA (who reports say was at the grassy knoll the day JFK was assassinated and also took part
This morning I listened to the Used Baby Racket episode of This is Your FBI on my MP3 player.
The story tells about a lady who sells her baby for $1,000 to someone who wanted to avoid the long wait to adopt a baby.
Her husband sends a recording on a record saying he is coming back home from Germany. She is worried because she has sold their baby to a stranger, and needs to buy the baby back, since her husband is coming home.
She tells her brother about her problem and he comes up with the idea of pretending to be an FBI agent, and tell the lady that the baby was kidnapped. His plan works perfectly as the lady gives the baby back to him.
They then resell the baby to another mother. Then the husband calls and says he is at the airport and will be home in 20 minutes. The lady and her brother were planning on reselling the baby again, but the husband coming back ruined their plans. So they take off with the baby, so they can sell it again.
They had a list of parents who wanted to adopt babies, making it easy for the criminals to sell the same baby several times, then use the FBI ploy to take the baby back free and then resell again.
This was a true case in the FBI files and the entire episode can be heard at this website:
It was somewhat of a shock for the United States to become involved in Libya. It is a mystery why President Obama consented to the U.S. role, in Libya. I feel like his advisers pressured him to make this decision.
If Muammar Gaddafi maintains control of Libya, it will be a serious blow to the U.S. The results of the following polls should better clarify where Americans stand on the Libyan situation.
Protesters calling for the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak.
Dictators all over the world have to be concerned after the protests in Egypt that led to the resignation of President Hosni Mubarak. He stubbornly held onto power promising elections before finally caving in to the protesters and giving up his power.
Mubarak had been in power since 1981 when then President Anwar Sadat was assassinated.
Now we have Libya in a similar crisis with their leader Muammar Gaddafi desperately holding on to power with his Air Force bombing protesters. He has been in power since 1969, ruling the country for 42 years.
Iran is still dealing with protesters calling for the overthrow of President Ahmoud Ahmadinejad. He has only been in power for six years but has made many worldwide enemies. His threats to use nuclear weapons against his enemies have many nations concerned.
He survived one round of protests but with the wave of protests in many countries he may suffer the fate of Mubarak and possibly Gaddafi sooner rather than later. The world would breathe a sigh of relief, if Ahmadinejad were removed from power and a leader who would be less likely to use nuclear weapons was voted into the presidency of Iran.
Bahrain and Tunisia are also in disarray. Tunisia has already had two leaders this year with President Mohamed Ghannouci resigning on Feb. 27.
It makes me wonder how Cuban leader Fidel Castro would handle protests in Cuba, if protesters would fill the streets in Havana.
He has been in power since 1959 for 52 years. The fact that thousands have left Cuba in small boats since he took power tells me he is not that popular. However, he has dealt harshly with his enemies which probably deters his enemies from being too vocal.
The protesters in many cases in these countries are not asking for much. They want to be able to vote for who they want, not some despotic dictator who rules with an iron hand.
Each time a dictator is removed from office it will spur citizens of other countries who are governed by a dictatorship to try protests as a way of gaining free elections.
The economic effect of these protests has rocked the worldwide oil markets. Gas prices here are up as high as $3.37 a gallon after lingering below $3.00 for months.
Once again, the country is in another oil crisis. There will be talk of consumers needing to buy more fuel efficient vehicles but invariably when the crisis ends, if it ends the sales of larger gas burning vehicles will go back to where they were before the crisis.
Americans are being held hostage by the middle east countries who control the flow of oil to the United States.
We will know in the coming weeks if the current oil crisis will end or we will see increasing prices for all products since oil is needed to transport those products and the higher prices for oil will be passed on to the consumers.
We are at the mercy of the oil producing countries. For years the politicians have talked about developing other sources of energy besides oil but when an oil crisis ends the talk subsides.
What is it going to take for the politicians in Washington to actually do something about the oil situation? It looks like none of them care enough to do something about it since they can afford the higher oil prices. Meanwhile the people that are affected the most by the higher oil prices have to cut back on food and other expenses to be able to drive to work.
Mickey Rooney testified before Congress about senior abuse and his passionate testimony told of how he personally has been abused himself.
From the news reports I have read, there has been no mention of him naming his son-in-law Chris Aber as the one who abused him but Aber is under a restraining order preventing him from being in close proximity to Rooney.
Aber’s attorney John O’Meara has stated that these charges of abuse are untrue. However he is saying that more than likely on his talks with Aber who isn’t going to say he abused Rooney. Therefore, O’Meara’s statement can be taken with a grain of salt.
I can’t believe Rooney would go before Congress making up a story about his son-in-law. I am sure Rooney’s testimony will be backed up in a court of law soon.
Mickey Rooney testifying before Congress as he tells how senior abuse left him with no control over his life.
After seeing his testimony it makes me feel terrible knowing that man who entertained us for about 70 years wasn’t enjoying his golden years because a family member allegedly has taken away control of his life leaving him a helpless 90 year old man.
He may have been Andy Hardy to us for many years back in the 30′s and 40′s but today he is a man reduced to nothingness because of senior abuse.
May God grant Mickey Rooney and others like him a peaceful life in the years remaining for them on earth. It is not asking much to be treated with respect and love because that is all Rooney and the other victims of abuse are asking for.
Archive.org will keep a reader entertained for hours.
Archive.org is probably the best source for audio and video online this side of YouTube. The home page for the website as I write this article has a link to an audio version of a Grateful Dead concert at Veteran’s Memorial Coliseum at New Haven, Connecticut on May 11, 1981.
The concert is only one of 803,305 audio recordings at the website. There are 2,214 old time radio related links to old time radio shows and magazines that were printed during the height of the popularity of old time radio.
One Roy Rogers episode has been downloaded 74,882 times showing that the website is available for downloading many of the old time radio shows we grew up with.
Old time radio fans will love looking at list after list of old time radio shows available for downloading including some of the more obscure shows which have very few episodes in existence.
The live music archive features 88,813 archives while the moving image archives total 451,934.
Avid readers will enjoy knowing that there are 2.694,639 texts including books and ebooks. The new Bookreader at the site includes Origin of the Species by Charles Darwin and is the example shown of how the Bookreader works.
There is an audio version of some books but the one I listened to was not of the best quality and seemed to be a computer generated voice which probably would be tiring to listen to for an entire book.
Most readers may not enjoy the voice and instead opt to read the books without sound. For those that like the audio they should enjoy the feature that highlights the portion of the book being read by the voice.
The Mega Reader iPhone app provides access to the 1.8 million free books at archive.org so they each iPhone user can have their own personal reader.
Each volume of the Warren Report investigation of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy is available to read.
The site is an excellent source of reading material for educators and students who are looking for books that are no longer copyrighted.
One word of caution: it could take hours just to look at what is available at archive.org. This website may have the most content of any website online and is worth going to the website to see for yourself what is available.
When the name Pat Brady is mentioned most Roy Rogers fans instantly think of Brady and Nellybelle his jeep.
Pat Brady was born on December 31, 1914 in Toledo, Ohio as Robert Ellsworth Patrick Aloysious O’Brady. When the Sons of Pioneers hired him to replace Roy Rogers he was hired and agreed to change his name to Pat Brady.
Brady appeared in his first movie Outlaws of the Prairie in 1937 as a singing ranger. He made several movies as a singing cowhand or singing rancher and was seen in many films that the Sons of Pioneers sang in.
Pals of the Golden West was his last movie which was released in 1951. That same year he appeared in his first Roy Rogers television program and never acted in movies again.
He was known for saying “Whoa Nellie” when driving the Willys CJ 2A jeep.
He played himself in the series from 1951-1957 and appeared in 100 episodes over that span. The Find A Grave website has this tribute to Brady:
If it were not for this man I would not be on this earth as he saved my fathers life during WWII. This man will always be a Hero to me.
- Rick T
Added: Jan. 10, 2011
He received two Purple Hearts in Germany and served with General Patton’s 3rd Army.
After leaving Roy Rogers television series Brady was only seen in one episode of four different western themed television shows making his last appearance in 30 Minutes at Gunsight in 1963.
For even more information and photos related to Pat Brady this website is an excellent source:
It has been seven years since I purchased my Creative Nomad Zen Xtra Jukebox MP3 player and it is still working great in 2011.
The 40 GB player may not be as slim as the MP3 players being sold today but it has 4,092 songs in it that I recorded from CD’s I had in my collection which has used only 14 GB of the space in the player.
I have found that Windows Media Player is best for ripping the songs from a CD into the computer and then after that process is completed going to My Computer will find the music in the My Music folder.
Right clicking on the music folder for the album and sending it to the player is all that is needed for it to copy the music into the player.
The sound quality to me is excellent and the music can be listened to in many ways. FM transmitters can be used to play the music in a stereo system, from non MP3 radios and other music sources.
However I have encountered problems getting the exact frequency on the transmitter to listen to the music so seldom even try to use them.
When my wife bought me a record player a couple of years ago it had an MP3 connection in the back enabling me to just plug one end into the MP3 player and the other into the MP3 connection on back of the record player.
There are many speakers today that are easily connected to a MP3 player. At one time Dollar Tree had one for a dollar that while it wasn’t the best sound but it did work.
Last year I found a I-Pod radio selling at a garage sale for only $3 which also has a MP3 connection in the back and it is great to listen to music and old time radio shows.
The old time radio shows on MP3 CD’s go directly into the My Music folder in Windows after the CD has been inserted into the CD drive. So with the MP3 player connected to the computer and the folder for the old time radio shows on that CD open right clicking will send the shows to the MP3 player.
Most MP3 CD’s will hold 100 old time half hour radio shows which is 50 hours of listening pleasure. For instance I have over 800 Jack Benny episodes on 8 or 9 discs.
One MP3 CD in my collection has an entire baseball game between the Detroit Tigers and New York Yankees in 1934 with legendary Hall of Fame pitcher Walter Johnson as an announcer. 77 years later it is still possible to listen to a game in which Lou Gehrig is playing but Babe Ruth was out with an injury that day.
There are also MP3 CD’s that are packed with radio shows that announce the bombing of Pearl Harbor and another about the Normandy invasion and you can hear the news broadcast those days over 60 years later.
Another MP3 CD includes a typical broadcast day from 1939 which includes every show that day that was broadcast from sign on till sign off and gives an idea of what it was like 71 years ago.
With my collection of over 17,000 old time radio episodes of many different shows it is easy to transfer several episodes of a particular show to the MP3 player and then after listening to them delete them from the player since they are on a MP3 CD so I can tell immediately if I have heard a show since I have heard it the episode would have been deleted.
If someone wants to buy old time radio shows it is much cheaper to buy them in MP3 form than on a regular audio CD since an audio CD may hold only four half hour shows and a cassette tape will only have a half hour show on front and back of the tape depending on how much the tape will hold.
2GB MobiBlu Cube MP3 player.
Move the calendar ahead to 2011 and MobiBlu has on the market a very small 2GB MP3 player that only weighs .063 ounces and it is a .94 of an inch square.
The MobiBlu player shown in the photo is currently being sold at Amazon for $111.22 which seems a bit too pricey for such a small player.
The player includes an FM radio and a clock. It also includes a built in microphone and a voice recorder.
The radio also can save music or talk shows into the player for later listening.
The price still is a little steep for a player that holds only 32 hours of MP3 music and 64 hours of WMA music.
To me it is more of a novelty than a practical MP3 player.
My clunky looking Creative Nomad Zen Xtra Jukebox may not be as small as the MobiBlu player but it has provided a lot of listening pleasure the last seven years.
Someday my Creative player will be obsolete since it is not compatible with Windows 7 the last I knew and I am already getting not compatible with Windows Media Player messages already but it does still work with it.
The only problem is that I have misplaced the installation CD for the player and since our computer was repaired after the virus the software is no longer in the computer so I can’t download music and old time radio shows till I find the missing software.
However I can still listen to the music and old time radio shows in the player for many years to come. Buying electronic products can produce a myriad of problems but I can truthfully say the Creative Nomad Zen Xtra Jukebox is working as well today as when I received it in the mail back in 2004.
1941 Philco console radio.
I can still listen to old time radio shows that go as far back as 1928 which is 83 years ago. The MP3 CD’s have been a amazing development that enable listeners in 2011 to go back in time to the good old days of old time radio which lasted from the 20′s till September 30,1962 the day old time radio died.
I can still recall visiting my grandparents at their Allendale, Missouri farm in 1959 and listening to radio shows and Kansas City Athletics baseball games as they were broadcast on a radio similar to this 1941 Philco console radio.
However the MP3 player enables me to relive those days 53 years later as I listen to the same great old time radio shows that were being broadcast back then.
It is exciting to listen to the old comedy shows like Fibber McGee and Molly, Great Gildersleeve, Amos and Andy and the Jack Benny show.
Detective shows of that era come alive again as Boston Blackie, Dragnet, This is Your FBI and dramas likk the Family Theater and Lux Radio Theater can be heard today bringing back memories of the good old days when life wasn’t so fast paced.
Listening to the Christmas shows from those days are a special treat like A Christmas Carol, Amos and Andy Christmas show in which Amos recites the Lord’s Prayer to his daughter on Christmas Eve. Another favorite was the Lum N’ Abner show where neighbors walk through the snow to help a destitute family.
The Family Theater Christmas episode of A Daddy For Christmas will bring tears to your eyes as a mother and her son try to make it after her husband is killed in World War II and the son’s mom winds up marrying a department store Santa Claus.
MP3 technology has made it possible for us to hear those shows on MP3 CD’s that are nominally priced with Ebay showing 621 items under the old time radio CD’s listing.
Some of the sellers are selling huge numbers of shows on MP3 CD’s and DVD’s. One seller is selling 852 episodes of Jack Benny shows for $4.89 using Buy It Now with only a $1.69 shipping charge. The only caveat is that these episodes are all on one DVD while it would take about nine MP3 CD’s for these same episodes which would drive the price higher.
These shows will play on a computer but it will take more technical knowledge than I have to play these shows on other devices but most audiophiles should have no problem.
Anyone who misses the good old days of radio can listen to the old shows at several websites if they can’t afford or don’t want to purchase an MP3 player.
OTR.NET is one of the best to listen to old time radio programs for free with over 12,000 free shows to listen to including 610 Jack Benny shows.
OTRCAT.com is one of the best places to sample shows where almost every show sold on the site has a free sample of that show.
Beyond Scared Straight airing on the A&E Network has stirred up controversy from those thinking the confrontational tactics seen on the show only make things worse for at risk kids.
Beyond Scared Straight which is being shown on the A&E Network which shows teenagers being confronted at prisons by inmates telling them what to expect if they are imprisoned.
The inmates are very confrontational with the teenagers especially with anyone that smiles or has a smirk on their face. They tell them in no uncertain terms what they can expect if they are given a prison sentence.
The inmates also talk to the teenagers one on one giving them guidance and what to expect in a more low key conversation simply telling them about the mistakes they made and how some of them in for murder will spend their entire life in jail.
I have seen some followup stories on some of those kids after they return home from their prison visit and the ones I have seen seem to have changed their attitudes. They also have learned to say no to those who might lure them into situations which could land them in prison.
One teenage boy is looking into qualifying for the Marines after graduating from high school. Joining the service sometimes is the only option for some teenagers to avoid a life of crime and ultimately a prison sentence.
An even younger boy was shown working in the yard and was telling how if others teenagers wanted to do something that could get him in trouble he told them no.
Speaking for myself I think this is a good program but there are those who oppose the program saying it will only make things worse for them.
The National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges has issued this statement regarding the broadcast of shows which bring kids into a prison environment to scare them.
The National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges is concerned that the A&E program “Beyond Scared Straight” misrepresents the effectiveness of such interventions with youthful offenders. Although advertisements for the show claim Scared Straight! is “an effective juvenile prevention/intervention program,” social science research clearly demonstrates the opposite. In fact, research strongly suggests Scared Straight! and similar programs have a harmful impact on youth and are associated with increased risk for continued delinquent/criminal behaviors. Further, it is clear these types of interventions as portrayed are neither developmentally appropriate nor trauma-informed.
My viewpoint is that these shows cause no harm and if they keep one teenager out of prison they are worthwhile. Sometimes being scared is a good thing if it keeps someone from a life of crime.
Producer Arnold Shapiro of Beyond Scared Straight was the producer of Big Brother from 2001-2006. He defends Beyond Scared Sraight with this statement:
“The kids in Beyond Scared Straight are chosen by youth counselors, teachers, family members. If these people saw no results they would stop doing it,” Shapiro adds. “The kids show an array of reactions in the prison. But they didn’t just walk out and forget about it.”
He goes on to explain, “We talk to the kids on a weekly basis, sometimes up to a year after filming, before we lock the final edit. We checked in with them and they were doing just fine.”
Shapiro also admits that Scared Straight shouldn’t necessarily be the first choice for those seeking to help troubled kids. “It’s a last resort. Counselors will tell you it’s a valuable tool in an arsenal of tools,” he says.
Now California and Maryland have suspended the “scared straight” programs in those states after the U.S. Justice Department warned they could lose federal funding if they continued the programs.
If all else fails the U.S. government will and in this case has pulled out the old “we will stop your funding threat” card.
Whether these programs continue or not apparently is at the mercy of the federal government. Threatening to withhold federal funding will probably bring any scared straight programs to a screeching halt.
Once more the federal government has decided for us what is good and what is bad for us. The families who have seen a change in their kids after they participated in the prison visits can only be thankful they were able to enroll their kids in the program before the Justice Department decided we don’t need programs that help our kids change into law abiding citizens before they embark on a life of crime.
My opinion for what it is worth is that the scared straight programs serve a useful purpose in preventing kids from hanging out with the wrong crowd and appreciating their parents and other adults who are looking out for their best interests.
Tim McCoy and John Wayne seen in Two Fisted Law in 1932 in the first part of the movie. Wayne was 25 at the time of the filming and another veteran actor Walter “Real McCoys” Brennan was 38.
Tim McCoy was born on April 10, 1881 in Saginaw, Michigan as Timothy John Fitzgerald “Tim” McCoy. He was the son of an Union soldier and served in World War I and World War II.
McCoy appeared in 20 films during the silent movie era. 1927 would find him in five movies, six movies in 1928 and he made nine movies in 1932.
At one stretch from 1926 to 1936 he made 26 movies and was paid $4,000 for each movie. This was during the height of the depression earning $104,000 during that span.
The Internet Movie Database lists McCoy as having been in 91 movies during film career spanning from his debut in The Thundering Herd in 1925 till his last movie appearance 40 years later in 1965 in Requiem for a Gunfighter.
During various points in his career McCoy would appear in a circus and different wild west shows one which he had a financial interest in lost $300,000 according to McCoy.
He married Inga Arvad in 1945 after divorcing his first wife Agnes Miller in 1931. Arvad had a very controversial past before marrying McCoy.
Arvad who was a Danish journalist had been investigated for being a possible Nazi spy since she was seen with Adolf Hitler at the 1936 Olympics. She been married several times before their marriage.
She had enough connections with Hitler henchmen Hermann Goring and Joseph Goebbels to be the first to scoop the news of the wedding of Goring and arranged through Goebbels an interview with Hitler. In her article after the interview she stated about Hitler:
”You immediately like him. He seems lonely. The eyes, showing a kind heart, stare right at you. They sparkle with force.”
Her being shadowed because of her Nazi connections led to her being discovered that she was having an affair with John F. Kennedy in 1942. FBI director had the couple photographed and had hidden microphones installed in the bedroom but they apparently knew they were being taped since they would sometimes say “whoever is listening.”
It is a mystery of how a Danish journalist who had been seen with Hitler and had an affair with John F. Kennedy would wind up marrying a cowboy hero in Tim McCoy. She died of cancer in Nogales, Arizona in 1973.
Tim McCoy died on January 29, 1978 at the age of 86 in Fort Huachuca, Sierra Vista, Arizona.
McCoy was another of the early cowboy stars who appeared in both silent films and talkies. B-westerns.com has an excellent website with pages and pages of information and photos about Tim McCoy.
I have been following the career of Gene Autry for many years but only today did I know his first name was Orvon and that he was Orvon Eugene Autry when he was born on September 29, 1907 in Tioga, Texas.
His family moved to Oklahoma in the 1920′s and after becoming a telegrapher for a railroad company he would practice singing especially after midnight. Will Rogers overheard him singing and told him he should be a professional singer.
He signed his first recording contract with Columbia Records in 1929 and three years later he recorded his first hit song That Silver-Haired-Daddy of Mine. Back in the Saddle Again was another of his early hits.
Autry not only received a Gold Record for That Silver-Haired Daddy of Mine but it was the first Gold Record received by any recording artist according to his official website.
Although Autry is known for singing Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer he wrote the Christmas standard Here Comes Santa Claus.
He would make his movie debut in 1934 in the movie In Old Santa Fe with Smiley Burnette who would be his sidekick portraying Frog Milhouse and Burnette also wrote many of the songs sung in the Autry films. He appeared in 80 of the Gene Autry westerns.
Pat Buttram would later replace Burnette in his movies when Autry returned from fighting in World War II since Burnette had found other employment. However, Burnette played a lot of different characters in the Autry films having different names in most of the movies.
Burnette did return to appear in the last six Gene Autry films which were released in 1953 after being in 56 films with western star Charles Starrett in the Durango Kid movies.
Not only was Gene Autry a recording star and western movie star but he also served in the Army Air Force from July of 1942 till October of 1945 during the height of his movie career. He was a flight officer flying planes in the Pacific Theater during World War II.
Autry also was an old time radio star appearing on his Melody Ranch radio program from 1940 to 1956. His horse Champion also had a radio show Adventures of Champion.
He wrote the Cowboy Commandments for his young listeners of the radio program:
Never shoot first, hit a smaller man, or take unfair advantage;
Never go back on his word, or a trust confided in him;
Always tell the truth;
Be gentle with children, the elderly and animals;
Not advocate or possess racially or religiously intolerant ideas;
Help people in distress;
Be a good worker;
Keep himself clean in thought, speech, action and personal habits;
Respect women, parents and his nation’s laws;
Be a patriot.
Autry’s films were loaded with action and singing and he was one of the first of the singing cowboys in the movies.
The town of Gene Autry, Oklahoma was named for him in 1941 and the 2000 census shows a population of 99 for the town. He bought a 1,200 acre ranch named the Flying A Ranch in 1939 near Berwyn, Oklahoma.
He also appeared on television on the CBS network and even had a Golden Book for children written about him.
Another first for Autry is that he was the first recording artist to sell out Madison Square Garden. He also received his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his accomplishments in five categories with stars in five different locations.
Dell Published printed a million copies of Gene Autry comic books in 1948 showing again how popular Gene Autry was in radio, television, movies, childrens books, comics and later as a baseball owner.
Even with all that was going on with his career Autry he also found time to provide stock for rodeos and was inducted into the Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame for his participation as a stock contractor.
He bought several radio stations and television stations and owned the broadcast rights to the Los Angeles Angels baseball team and became the owner of the team. He not only was the first owner of the Angels was the vice president of the American League.
Among his other accomplishments were his induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1969, the Angels retired No.26 in his honor even though he never played professional baseball and was honored for his work to preserve the memory of the old west days. Major league teams have 25 player rosters so that is how the No.26 became his number since he was regarded as the 26th man.
His entry into the restaurant business was short-lived when he refused to pay the Chicago mafia a fee to open his business. Gangsters showed up on opening night and ordered the staff to leave and then destroyed the restaurant. That ended Autry’s foray into the restaurant business.
However money was never a problem for Autry as he was on the list in Forbes magazine of the 400 Richest Americans for many years and his fortune was valued at $320 million in 1995 which by then was not enough to be in the top 400 richest.
Surprisingly Gene Autry was the musical inspiraton for Beatle Ringo Starr who made this quote about his interest in Autry:
Gene Autry was the most. It may sound like a joke – Go and have a look in my bedroom, It’s covered with Gene Autry posters. He was my first musical influence. Ringo Starr
Gene Autry’s life ended on October 2, 1998 due to lymphoma dying at his home in Studio City, California. His death came less than three months after the death of his contemporary singer-cowboy Roy Rogers.
It can said that Gene Autry was a success at everything he attempted in life except for the restaurant business but nobody could have succeeded under those conditions.
Gene Autry died extremely rich but was buried in a grave with a simple marker with all the others in the cemetery. This tells me he never thought he was special but he will be special to those of us who remember seeing his movies and listening to his recordings especially the Christmas songs.
This memorial at the Find A Grave website reminds me of how much I loved him singing Christmas songs:
Santa Claus comes tonight! Thanks, Gene for all you did for us kids of yesteryear. May you rest in peace, and may God be with you always.
- K. Williams
Added: Dec. 24, 2010
What a tribute to a great man who was such a great role model for kids and adults alike.
A young Col. Dwight D. Eisenhower is shown in the above photo as the Louisiana Maneuvers involving 400,000 U.S. soldiers took place north of Pineville, Louisiana in 1941. Four years later Col. Eisenhower would be a general commanding the D-Day invasion as the U.S. would enter the European theater of World War II on June 6, 1944. Less than a year later the war would be over in Europe when Germany surrendered on May 8, 1945. Three months later on August 15,1945 the Japanese would surrender.
The war was just part of 1940′s history but affected the daily lives of those who stayed home during the war. In 1943 automobile production was halted so those materials could be used in the war effort.
American citizens experienced rationing of food supplies in 1943. Travel was limited in order to make tires last longer and drivers were told to not drive over 35 MPH to extend the life of tires.
Interesting Facts From the 40′s
The U.S. population was 122 million in the 1940′s and is as of this moment at over 311 million an increase of 189 million since the 1940′s.
The national debt in the 40′s was $43 billion but the national debt today stands at over $14 trillion. The minimum wage was 43 cents an hour and in 1966 when I started work at the Alexandria Town Talk in Alexandria, Louisiana the minimum wage was $1.40 an hour an increase of about a dollar an hour over what American workers were earning in minimum wage in the 40′s. The minimum wage today is $7.25
Many Had No Indoor Plumbing
Only 55 percent of American homes had indoor plumbing in the 1940′s and outhouses were still being widely used.
The first commercial television stations went on the air in the 1940′s. The first digital computers weighed 30 tons.
Big Band Music Dominated
Big band music dominated the music scene during the 40′s as the bands traveled across the U.S. entertaining fans of big name bandleaders like Glenn Miller, Jimmy and Tommy Dorsey and Benny Goodman.
The 1940′s would be the last decade in which old time radio ruled the airwaves as television began to convert radio listeners into television viewers.
1945 would see the development of the first TV dinner. At the end of World War II there were only 5,000 television sets in existence. In 1951 that number would increase to 17 million sets being used.
Window Air Conditioners Gained Popularity
Only 74,000 window air conditioners were sold in 1948 and that number increased to 1.45 million by 1953. We didn’t buy our first air conditioner till about 1967 so was 9 years old when we first bought a television and 23 when we bought our first air conditioner.
I don’t ever remember being hot though since that was all we knew and didn’t have anything to compare it with.
The following website has even more details about the 1940′s and the events and entertainment from that decade.
Back in the 1940′s the cell phone, MP3 players, HD televisions, DVD players, laptops, notepads and electronic readers were not yet in use leaving time for other activities. Life was simpler then with no ringtones being heard from a cell phone when a phone call or message was being sent.
The 40′s saw the birth of my oldest brother in 1941, my birth in 1944, the birth of a younger brother in 1947 and a younger sister in 1947.
No War at End of Decade
The decade ended without another major war but June of 1950 would see the start of the Korean War the war which has been more of a forgotten war except for the veterans of that war and their family members.
You seldom see any television documentaries about the Korean War while you can always find film from World War II and the Vietnam War on television programs.
The 1940′s ended 62 years ago but for those of us who lived during that decade it will be forever etched in our memories.
Audie Murphy was most decorated soldier of World War II.
Audie Murphy was born in Kingston, Texas on June 20, 1925. He had a troubled childhood having to drop out of school when in the fifth grade due to his father abandoning the family.
He earned a dollar a day for picking cotton and plowing the fields. One of his hunting companions said Murphy didn’t miss when he shot while hunting. His friend mentioned this fact to Murphy and he replied that his family doesn’t eat if he doesn’t kill animals.
Things would get even worse for Murphy when his mom died when he was only 15 in 1941. When Pearl Harbor was attacked Murphy attempted to enlist in the military but was rejected because he was only 16 at the time.
In 1942 his sister adjusted his birthdate to make him appear to be 18 and he was admitted into the Army after being rejected by the Marines and Army paratroopers for only being 5 foot 5.
He passed out during a drill at Camp Wolters, Texas and his commanding officer tried to transfer him to cooks and bakers school. Murphy would have none of that since he wanted to be a combat soldier so was sent to advanced infantry training at Fort Meade, Maryland.
His first combat was during the invasion of Sicily when he killed two Italian officers on horseback which won him a promotion to corporal.
Murphy had to fight his way out of an ambush at Salerno when his unit was attacked by German soldiers. He was rewarded with a promotion to sergeant after the battle.
When his best friend was killed by a German soldier who was faking surrendering Murphy opened fire on the German machine gun crew which had killed his friend and killed all of them and then used their machine guns and grenades to destroy other German positions winning him the Distinguished Service Cross.
He showed his shooting skills at the Battle of Holtzweir when he only had 19 of 128 soldiers available for combat. He ordered the other eighteen soldiers to fall back while he begin gunning down the Germans and used a burning tank’s guns to mow down even more Germans.
Only then did he call his eighteen soldiers in the rear to rout the Germans out of their position as the Germans exited the area. His valor in this battle earned him the Congressional Medal of Honor. Even more impressive was the fact that the temperature was minus 14 degree fahrenheit and 24 inches of snow was on the ground during this battle.
Murphy was then removed from the front lines and promoted to first lieutenant on February 22, 1945 about three months before the end of the war in the European theater. He received 33 U.S. medals and received every medal that was possible to win.
He was 5 foot 5 and 110 pounds when he enlisted but was 5 foot 7 and 140 pounds by the time he ended his three year enlistment.
Murphy alone was credited with knocking out six tanks and killing 240 soldiers. He was discharged from the Army on September 21, 1945.
Like most combat veterans Murphy experienced post traumatic stress from being in combat. He had to relive his wartime experiences as he acted in To Hell and Back which was highest grossing movie for Universal Studios till Jaws surpassed the $10 million box office total of the Murphy film.
Murphy appeared in 44 feature films during his 25 years in Hollywood. In addition to acting he was a country music songwriter writing the Jerry Wallace hit Shutters and Boards.
He developed a close friendship with Jimmy Hoffa and was working to have him released from prison. In fact he talked to Grady Partin who had testified against Hoffa to recant his testimony.
Murphy’s life would come to an end when the private plane he was in crashed into Brush Mountain close to Catawba, Virginia.
The Statue of Liberty was conceived in France in 1865 but wouldn't be completed till 1886 in New York harbor twenty one years later and has welcomed visitors to the United States for the last 124 years and was the first thing many immigrants moving to the United States saw.
The Statue of Liberty was first conceived at a dinner party in France in 1865. It would be ten years later in 1975 before the construction of the statue was begun.
Early fundraising attempts did not go well. Governor Grover Cleveland of New York who would later become the 22nd and 24th president of the United States vetoed a proposal granting $50,000 toward the construction of the Statue of Liberty. Ironically President Grover Cleveland participated in the dedication on October 28, 1886 despite having have vetoed the bill raising money for the statue when governor of New York.
Joseph Pulitzer started a drive to raise $100,000 for the construction of the statue. Residents at a home for alcoholics in Brooklyn donated $15 and they were one of the larger contributors since 120,000 donors donated a total of $102,000.
Countless immigrants to the United States have been welcomed to our country and New York City as they enter the New York harbor. It is considered by some as the most iconic landmark signifying the freedom Americans have experienced with the Liberty Bell perhaps being first or second most significant landmark representing the freedom Americans cherish to others.
The torch was seldom illuminated during World War II due to wartime blackouts.
Due to structural problems the Statue of Liberty was restored from 1984 till it was rededicated by President Ronald Reagan in July of 1986. It is scheduled to be closed again in 2011 for construction of an emergency staircase to expedite evacuation of the landmark.
This photo shows Statue of Liberty standing while the Twin Towers are burning on September 11, 2001 after the terrorist attack.
The terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 make Americans appreciate even more our freedom and the Statue of Liberty standing in New York harbor remind me of the immigrants who have moved to the United States to make a new life and have become citizens of the United States.
The Statue of Liberty has also welcomed many of our troops returning from war overseas and is a symbol of the liberty those soldiers from all the branches of the armed forces have fought for and in too many cases have fought and died for.