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.
Diagram showing key landmarks involved in the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963 and the Dallas Police Headquarters, where Jack Ruby murdered Lee Harvey Oswald on November 24 of that year.
50 years since the assassination of President John F. Kennedy have passed and yet there is still no smoking gun, that proves that the crime was a conspiracy. I have read a lot of books on the subject, but still have not read anything that proves there was a conspiracy.
I still think it was a conspiracy and think the Warren Commission Report was slanted, to make the American public think Lee Harvey Oswald was the sole person, that was involved in the assassination.
My personal opinion is that Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson was involved in the assassination. He had the most to gain, from the assassination of President Kennedy. Johnson was very unhappy being a figurehead in the Kennedy administration and had the most to gain if the president was dead. He knew he would instantly become president, if Kennedy were to be assassinated. There are many instances, in which Johnson seemed to be involved like it was said that Johnson is the one that insisted that the presidential limousine top be uncovered. The president became an open target to any assassin, once the limousine proceeded toward the killing zone.
There is a report that Johnson told a girlfriend the night before the assassination, that the Kennedys would never embarrass him again as mentioned in this article. The article is missing some photos, but the content of the article is what is important.
One of the key parts of the article is this paragraph, in which his girlfriend mentions that LBJ was on the brink of going to prison, because of hearings going on in Washington. This testimony was supposed to be given on the day of the assassination, but when LBJ became president the hearings were stopped and LBJ averted being sent to prison, now that he had the power of the presidency to protect him, from any further hearings.
“Had the assassination not happened the day that it did, Lyndon Johnson would have probably gone to prison, they would have gotten rid of him – he was so involved with some of this,” said Brown.
LBJ more than other person may be the reason, that no smoking gun has ever been found that would blow the lid off a LBJ conspiracy.
Mac Wallace, whose fingerprints were found on a box in the Texas School Book Depository is thought by some, to have fired the fatal shots that killed President John F. Kennedy. The following reader’s review after reading LBJ: The Mastermind Behind The JFK Assassinationconnects some of the dots that lead to LBJ as the mastermind behind the killing. I read the 658 page book last fall and it details how LBJ systematically got rid of his enemies using his hit man Mac Wallace to kill them. There are some that think Wallace enlisted Lee Harvey Oswald and Jack Ruby as part of the assassination and subsequent murder of Oswald. When E. Howard Hunt mentions on his death bed that LBJ was involved in the assassination, then it makes sense, that LBJ was involved in the assassination from the beginning to the end. The book mentions that when the presidential motorcade reached the killing zone, that LBJ ducked down to make sure he wasn’t shot, while leaving his wife and Senator Ralph Yarborough D-Texas exposed, while the assassination was in progress.
From first chapter to last, this is a beautifully written, intellectually captivating, and ultimately persuasive account of the role of LBJ in the assassination of JFK. I had more than 100 conversations with Madeleine Duncan Brown, one of his many mistresses but the only one who bore him a son. She, too, became convinced that Lyndon was profoundly involved in the death of his predecessor. On New Year’s Eve, six weeks after the assassination, they had a rendezvous at the Driskill Hotel in Austin, where she confronted him with rumors, rampant in Dallas at the time, that he had been involved, since no one stood more to gain. He blew up at her and told her that the CIA and the oil boys had decided that JFK had to be taken out. She wrote about it in her book, TEXAS IN THE MORNING. Her account has been reinforced by Billy Sol Estes, the Texas wheeler-dealer who made mountains of money for Lyndon, Connally, and their buddies, who explains in his book, A TEXAS LEGEND, how he became convinced that Cliff Carter, LBJ’s chief administrative assistant, and Malcolm “Mac” Wallace, his personal assassin (by whom Lyndon had a dozen or more persons terminated, including one of his sisters), had been personally involved. E. Howard Hunt, in his “Last Confessions” in ROLLING STONE, explained to his son, St. John, that LBJ, Cord Meyer, William Harvey, David Sanchez Morales, and others in the CIA had been involved in the assassination. For an overview, enter “John F. Kennedy: History, Memory, Legacy”, and download Chapter 30. Or visit [...], “Reclaiming History: A Closed Mind Perpetrating a Fraud on the Public”, and you will understand the context within which it took place. For a short course, try “Reasoning about Assassinantions” via google. I also recommend James Douglass, JFK AND THE UNSPEAKABLE. Both make profound contributions to the case.
I have no doubt that Jack Ruby was in the Dallas Police station the morning of Sunday, November 24th, with the backing of organized crime and cooperation from the Dallas Police Department.. Assuming there was a conspiracy, it became incumbent for those involved to prevent Oswald from talking any more to investigators or to be brought to trial.
National columnist Dorothy Kilgallen, who had interviewed Ruby was found dead and her notes about the Ruby interview were missing, when her body was found in her apartment on November 8, 1965. Her death came two weeks exactly short of the second anniversary of the Kennedy assassination.
Richard Kollmar the husband of Kilgallen was asked about his wife’s interest in the JFK assassination by a friend, but Kollmar said he would take that information to his grave.
Some interesting notes about some of the better known people, that had some connection with what happened that day in Dallas 50 years ago:
President John F. Kennedy - Was gunned down in Dealey Plaza on November 22, 1963 at the age of 46. His death came 13 months after the Cuban missile crisis in October of 1962. His death also came one year and three months, after the death of Marilyn Monroe in August of 1962. Monroe reportedly threatened to tell the media about the sexual indiscretions by the president and Bobby Kennedy. We probably will never know if the Kennedy’s were involved in her death, but if she had disclosed the sexual escapades of the Kennedys, then John F. Kennedy would probably not have been assassinated a year later, because he probably would have been impeached.
John F. Kennedy may or may not have been involved in silencing Monroe, but at the same time he may have lived for many more years, even if he wasn’t president on the day of the assassination and would have no reason to be in Dallas that day. If Kennedy was still alive today he would be observing his 96th birthday on May 29.
President Lyndon B. Johnson – The members of the Kennedy administration were not happy, to be coerced into naming Johnson as the vice president at the 1960 Democratic Convention in 1960. Johnson chafed at being told what to do by the Kennedy staffers. So he had every motive to make sure President John F. Kennedy was erased from the American political scene. Johnson was 55 at the time of the assassination and would be 64, when he died on January 22, 1973. He would be 105 in August if still alive.
Lee Harvey Oswald – He is considered to be the lone gunman that assassinated the president on November 22, 1963. This is precisely the way President Lyndon B. Johnson wanted Oswald to be regarded. If Oswald was thought of as a lone conspirator, then it would protect President Johnson from being mentioned as a conspirator. Oswald was only 24 when he assassinated the president and on November 24, 1963, when he would be shot in a Dallas Police station two days later.
Jack Ruby who shot and killed Oswald ended any chance of Oswald telling anyone about any conspiracy, in a trial that would have been the trial of the century, if it had been held. Instead, Ruby made sure the American people would never know, if Oswald had been involved in a conspiracy. Oswald would have been 74 in October if still alive.
Officer J.D. Tippit – Jack Ruby not only prevented us from knowing more about the Kennedy assassination, but probably also prevented Oswald from telling his story, about what happened in the J.D. Tippit murder. Officer Tippit had joined the Dallas Police force as a patrolman 11 years before the day of the assassination of the president and his own murder. There are conflicting reports about who killed Officer Tippit. Some reports say two men were involved in his murder.
William Scoggins a taxi driver said he heard three gunshots, then saw Tippit fall to the ground. Scoggins said a man with a gun passed by him saying something akin to “poor dumb cop”. At least four witnesses identified Oswaqld in police lineups, which more or less makes it a sure thing that Oswald murdered Officer Tippit. The police tracked Oswald to the Texas Theater, where he was overpowered and apprehended by the Dallas Police. Tippit was 39 when he was murdered on November 22, 1963 and would be 89 if still alive.
Jack Ruby – On the day of the assassination Ruby was 53 years old. Ruby would be seen at Parkland Hospital, when President John F. Kennedy was taken there after being seriously wounded. He would be seen again at the Dallas Police station that night. Then on Sunday morning at 11:21 AM Dallas time, Ruby somehow gained entrance to the Dallas Police station, probably with inside help as the entrance he used was mysteriously left unguarded. When Oswald was being led to a vehicle, that was to take Oswald to another jail Ruby stepped in front of Oswald and shot and killed him. Ruby alluded to the fact that people in high places were involved with his murdering Oswald.
This makes me wonder if President Johnson was one of the officials in high places being mentioned. Ruby died on January 3, 1967. He was close friends to Sam and Joe Campisa who were associated with crime boss Carlos Marcello. Jimmy Hoffa reportedly said at one time, that Ruby was to make sure that Oswald was killed by Dallas police, while in their custody. When Ruby failed to insure that Oswald would be killed by the police, then he apparently took on himself to kill Oswald, since his own life could be in jeopardy if Oswald was not killed. Ruby would have been 102 if still alive on March 25.
50 Years Later
With the 50 year anniversary of the JFK assassination approaching in eight months we can only guess at what documents about the assassination may be released in the coming months. The fact that CIA is holding 1,171 top-secret documents about the JFK assassination tells me, that these documents could tell about any conspiracies that may have been involved during the assassination. This is only conjecture, but I think these CIA documents could tie President Lyndon B. Johnson to the assassination. Johnson has been dead for 40 years now, so can’t see any problem with documents being released, even if they connect a former president to the assassination.
I remain a conspiracy theorist, but think the government will continue to keep the JFK assassination documents sealed. The American people deserve to know everything now that 50 years have passed. My personal belief is that these documents lead straight to former President Lyndon B. Johnson and his henchmen.
Will the 50th anniversary come and go, without any documents being released? Even 10-year-old kids at the time of the assassination would be 60 this year. So a middle-aged adult between 30-49 would now be 80-99 years old, so should not be in a government position of power.
How much longer will these documents remain sealed? My only conclusion is that somebody has some dark secrets, that the government doesn’t want released in the near future.
I have no problems with any authors writing books that are pro-conspiracy or anti-conspiracy, but unless the government release these documents we have no hope, of finding out the rest of the story, about what happened in Dealey Plaza on November 22, 1963.
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.
Oh what a tangled web we weave, When first we practise to deceive! Sir Walter Scott, Marmion, Canto vi. Stanza 17.Scottish author & novelist (1771 – 1832)
Jodi Arias apparently never heard of Sir Walter Scott’s famous quotation above, because she has woven such a web of lies and deceit, that not even she can remember them all. Few criminals are smug enough to be shown smiling in their mug shots, but it is par for the course for Arias, who left a trail of lies behind after murdering Travis Alexander.
The salacious audio recordings of her and her ex-boyfriend talking about sex are a prime example of how the media has changed and how cable news networks are getting away, with foisting this stuff on the American public. The major networks would have been heavily fined for presenting the lurid details of their sexual encounters in such graphic terms.
The defense and prosecutor even played some of the same recordings, in their prosecution of and defense of Arias.
Arias Claiming Self Defense
It is ludicrous that Arias is trying to save herself from going to death row, by using the self-defense claim. It seems preposterous that she would claim self-defense, when Alexander was shot and stabbed 27 times. If it was self-defense then why would she stab him 27 times? Rage had a lot more to do with his death, than self-defense since stabbing him that many times shows that Arias was not content with him being almost positively dead. She could have fled the house sooner if it was really self-defense, since Alexander was not in any shape to endanger her life.
Prosecutor Juan Martinez battled with Arias for many days, while she was on the stand. She showed time and time again, that she was not capable of answering a simple yes or no question. She often pointed out any mistakes Martinez made. Martinez would ask a question and Arias would go off on a tangent that had nothing to do with his question. So he had to repeatedly ask the same questions over and over again. I doubt Martinez has ever encountered a more reluctant witness than Arias.
Martinez went into details of how Arias had lied to the detectives and showed the 48 Hours interview, which clearly showed her making up lies as she went along.
The defense allowing Arias to testify was a formula for disaster and Thursday we saw just how a big mistake it was for her to testify. Once Martinez started questioning Arias about the day of the murder we saw her smirk disappear, because she was now being cornered into admitting more, than she wanted to admit on the stand.
Were Tears Fake?
We will never know if her tears yesterday were real or only more of her act. I think she sent herself to death row yesterday by her testimony. Martinez pointed out how well she was remembering other events on the day of the murder, but her mind was in a complete fog, when it came to remembering murdering Alexander.
Martinez mentioned earlier while questioning Aria that she had attempted to commit suicide, but couldn’t stand he pain of cutting her wrist, so Martinez asked her “If you thought that nick was painful, then imagine what pain Alexander had felt when she plunged a knife into his heart. That question rid the smirk off the face of Arias.
The key point about her mind being in a fog to me is that how can anyone stab someone 27 times and not even remember it? Her mind was not in a fog and she knew exactly what she was doing.
It was a mistake on the part of the defense to let Arias testify and she may have signed her own death warrant yesterday, with her testimony of being in a fog that day, while Martinez pointed out many discrepancies in her testimony, that showed that she was not even close to being in a fog.
My concern is that she may have been on the stand so long, that a juror may have begun to feel sorry for her and that is the only hope for Arias now to have a hung jury. I would be in complete shock if a not guilty verdict is rendered, but not so surprised to have a hung jury. Let us hope that doesn’t happen, because I don’t know if the nation would want to go through this trial for a second time.
Tried to Cover Her Tracks
Arias tried to cover her tracks by leaving voice mails, texts and email, addressed to Alexander while knowing good and well she had already killed him.
The communications pictured her as a concerned friend, who wanted to see how he had been doing and acting as if she knew nothing about his death.
There reportedly will be no trial today and court will re-convene on Monday.
We can only hope for a rapid end to this trial. Arias has to know that she should have taken the advice of Sir Walter Scott, instead of weaving a web of lies and deceit that could lead to her execution. The following poll asks the question, that if you were a juror, with your knowledge of the trial as of today, which verdict you would render…Guilty or not guilty.
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.
2006 – I would return to my job at Louisiana Community Care, after losing my job with Coastal Culvert. I primarily worked in a group home with seven guys at the time. It was a very demanding job as I had to assist them with their hygiene and washed and dried all their clothes. I would walk in the door at the group home at 4:30 PM and wouldn’t sit down for the first time till about 11 PM, when I had to write down the events of the day for each individual client.
One time a client who ate too fast threw up and I was mopping up the mess and he came up to me and hit me in the head and stomach with a 1-2 punch. Needless to say I was more wary around that client from then on. Another time he woke up during the night wanting chips and when I didn’t give him any he overturned a table and dumped a pitcher of Kool-Aid on the kitchen floor.
I made a point of having all the clothes washed and put away and the floors all swept and mopped, by the time the 12:30 AM relief worker came in. I worked there till around Christmas and retired, since I was now 62 and eligible for Social Security.
Andrew and Rhonda in 2006 at Matthew’s baseball game.
Wikipedia lists very few newsworthy events during 2006 in the United States, with Twitter being launched that year, which turned out to be the most newsworthy event of the year.
Gasoline was selling for $3.03 on August 11, but had dipped to $2.21 by November 17.
2007 – We moved to Knoxville, Tennessee in August of 2007, as we followed my daughter, son-in-law, when he was named manager of a Knoxville Domino’s store. About three weeks later, when things didn’t work out well with the job they moved back to Pineville, Louisiana.
Since we had used our savings to make the move we remained in Knoxville till December of 2010.
We had a traumatic event that August, when Rhonda was driving down a Knoxville street and was hit by a car turning out into traffic, from an apartment parking lot. Rhonda sustained a broken foot in the accident and was unable to go for a job interview, that was scheduled the next week. We moved to another apartment in the same apartment complex in September and Justin and me moved everything by ourselves, which was a day long job, since Rhonda was unable to help.
Then I went to work for Luxottica, a company that makes lenses for eyeglasses in Knoxville. It was another typical manufacturing job, with pressure to produce the most lenses in the least time. I was operating four machines at once in the fining department. After finishing the fining, we would take the lenses to the next department the polishing department, which made the lenses look even better. This was another temporary Westaff job, so the job played out soon and was without work again. We were given an eviction notice from the apartment on Thanksgiving Eve, but managed to stay there till I found work the next month.
I went to work as a caregiver with Evergreen Ministries in Knoxville, whose headquarters are located in Haughton, Louisiana in December of 2007. The job went well and I remained there till August of 2008. I was required to take a test, to be allowed to administer meds to the clients and scored 91 on the test. I wasn’t allowed to give meds, till I had passed the test, but it made it easier to work in homes, that needed a certified meds person, since some workers never were certified to give meds.
This was the year that the Va. Tech student killed 30 people. My brother lived next to the campus and was driving on campus toward work, when he saw several police cars speeding toward the site of the shootings.
The big news in technology was the introduction of the iPhone and the Nintendo Wii.
Average income was over $50,000 but doubt many of those people worked at the Alexandria Town Talk.
Price of a gallon of gas was $3.38, which is more than it is now six years later, with it being in the $3.25 range in DeRidder, Louisiana area.
An ounce of gold is $630, compared to when I was growing up, when it was $35 an ounce. Someone that had bought 100 ounces of gold at $35 an ounce for $3500 would have seen their gold raise in value to $63,000 for that 100 ounces in 2007.
2008 – Would continue to work for Evergreen Ministries till August of 2008, when Rhonda found a better paying job at Comcast working in their call center. We only had one vehicle, since our Ford Contour had been totaled in the wreck in August of 2007, so only one of us could work.
Would move into this house in Knoxville in 2008:
Our home in Knoxville, Tennessee from August 2008 till December 2010.
We joined Piney Grove Baptist Church in Knoxville and would sing special music there many times and would sometimes be a replacement song leader. The prayers of the congregation had a lot to do, with Rhonda surviving a life or death surgery in 2010.
The average income dipped $10,000 during the year to $40,000.
Gasoline had risen one cent to $3.39 in 2008, while a barrel of crude oil was selling for a record $147.
The average rent for a house was now $800 and the housing market totally collapsed as the value of houses declined precipitously.
2009 – Rhonda drove me to Groves, Texas to spend time with my daughter’s family in June and attended a Astros-Cubs game on June 9. Rhonda drove back to Knoxville, while to boarded a plane to Knoxville from Houston later. While I was gone a tornado hit our home in Knoxville, but luckily the only real damage was to the deck as a tree fell on it.
A tornado hit our deck in June of 2009 in Knoxville, Tennessee.
Rhonda would experience the first signs of having a serious health problem about November of 2009, when she was sent home from work being very sick. The next year would see Rhonda have her large intestines removed and will have more on that in the 2010 post.
Monthly rent fell to $675 in 2009, while a gallon of gasoline dropped to $2.73, which is about 52 cents cheaper, than it is in 2013. A barrel of oil which had peaked at $147 in 2008 was now only $53 a barrel.
2010 – Westaff found me a temporary job working at a call center, which involved taking orders for Talbots a clothing company, which had an office in Knoxville. Temp job is an apt description for this job, since it lasted for about two hours. I completed one transaction and then heard the customer telling someone “If this order comes out right it will be a miracle”. My career as a call center employee came to a screeching halt about two minutes later.
March 1, 2010 was a monumental day for Rhonda, as she had her large intestines removed that day and she also smoked her last cigarette that day and hasn’t smoked since. The surgeon found out she had colon cancer that day, but the colon had already been removed and he also found out that Rhonda had diabetes.
The surgery was on Monday and it was on the Thursday night before Rhonda was to go home, that everything went terribly wrong. She went into septic shock and was moved into intensive care. The doctors were at a loss of what to do, before deciding the next day to perform an ileostomy on Rhonda. Her organs were shutting down and was having problems breathing when the surgery started. The surgery went well, but the surgeon told us, that he didn’t expect Rhonda to be alive the next Monday, after the Friday surgery was performed, but was shocked to see that she was still alive.
Rhonda and me after her second surgery in four days, while she was in a six day coma at the University of Tennessee Medical Center in March,2010.
Rhonda was in a coma for six days and didn’t wake up till March 11 on the 16th birthday of Justin. Her sisters had driven from Louisiana to Tennessee, but Rhonda was in the coma the whole time they were there. I did all the housework till Rhonda was feeling able to do it that next summer.
I would return to work at Evergreen Ministries in July of 2010 and would remain there till a couple of days, before we moved to Sulphur, Louisiana. I enjoyed the work and didn’t miss any days of work. Had one close call, when driving the clients home and the brakes failed. I managed to get up on the sidewalk, to avoid hitting a car and drove into a parking lot and stopped the company van.
After the hospitalization and recovery we were ready to return home to Louisiana and left Knoxville. It was 16 the morning we left Knoxville, but when we arrived in Sulphur it was 78 degrees, which is even warm for Sulphur late in December.
Our relatives helped us unload the truck in about a half hour or so. It had taken us three days to load the truck in Knoxville, so it was good to unload it fast.
2010 was a slow news year, with no major story listed at the Wikipedia site.
The Apple iPad is released in 2010.
A gallon of gasoline cost $2.73 and a barrel of crude oil was selling for $73.00 a barrel, which was $20 more than the 2009 price.
Price of gold had skyrocketed to $1237 an ounce, which was $1202 more than the price I remembered as a youngster.
Grandson Mark Geisel who was born one day after my birthday.
2001 – Mark Geisel was born on October 15, 2001 in Sulphur, Louisiana, while his father was the manager at the Domino’s Pizza place in Sulphur. Mark has done very well in school and loves to read. He plays goalie and other positions on his soccer team. His red hair goes back a long way in family history. My mom had a red-headed brother, that was born in the 1920′s or 1930′s. My mom had two red-headed sons and a red-headed daughter and a daughter with auburn hair. I was the black sheep of the family with black hair.
We moved to Gibbons Street about this time and then moved to Linda Drive later that year in the Kingsville area.
September 11, 2001 – A day that will live in infamy.
September 11, 2001 was a day that none of us will forget. I had called the mechanic that morning checking on our car in his shop. He asked me if I had the television on and that is when I found out about the horrific events of that day. The memory of those planes slamming into the twin towers of the World Trade Center will forever be ingrained in my memory.
I couldn’t comprehend how four planes could be hijacked the same morning and that day let us know how lax our airport security was at the time. The nation was in chaos at the time, with aircraft being grounded all over the country. It was eerie hearing about passengers on these planes talking to loved ones, on their cell phones telling, about the horrors of what they were experiencing and then knowing those same people on the cell phones died a violent death minutes later.
It is difficult to believe that September 11 of this year will be the 12th anniversary of that horrific day.
The “War on Terrorism” begins with the invasion of Afghanistan.
Dale Earnhardt dies during a crash in the last lap of the Daytona 500.
Richard Reid known as the “shoe bomber” attempted to blow up an American Airlines plane.
The first iPod was released and Wikipedia was launched on the internet.
The average rent jumped $40 from $675 in 2000 to $715 in 2001. The price of a gallon of gas jumped from $1.26 in 2000 to $1.41 in 2001. A loaf of bread cost $1.82.
2002 – My favorite memory of this year was the 40th class reunion of Pineville High School. I had never attended a reunion until 2002. If I was scheduled to work on the day of reunion, then I would usually work, but this year I made sure I had that week off, so I could attend. It was great seeing classmates from the 1962 class, for the first time in many years. I hadn’t run into some of them even though they had never left Pineville. The saddest part of the reunion was when the members of our class that had passed on were mentioned in a Power Point presentation, with Duane Yates singing the Lord’s Prayer in the background. Sadly Duane died before our 50th reunion in 2012. Seeing the teachers and students from 1962 again made this a special time in my life.
The price of gasoline escalated to $1.61 a gallon, a 36 cent a gallon rise since the $1.26 gasoline of 2000, which was two years earlier.
2003 – This turned out to be the last full year that I worked at the Alexandria Town Talk newspaper. The paper was never the same, after it was acquired by the Gannett Corporation. The Christmas bonus we had received while the paper was owned by the Smith family and the Central Newspapers chain was the first thing to go, under the auspices of the Gannett mega corporation. That $150 we had received each Christmas was now a thing of the past, as was the free newspapers for employees.
Iraq is invaded on March 19 by the United States military.
Saddam Hussein is captured by the U.S. 4th Infantry Division.
Gasoline prices jumped to 1.83, a jump of 57 cents a gallon since 2000.
2004 – My 36 years at Town Talk and 38 years in newspaper production ended in 2004, when I retired with my last day of work being Halloween night. I spent most of my working life at Town Talk. In fact it was my first job after returning from Vietnam in 1966. I had seen my pay go from $1.40 an hour in 1966 to $13.50 an hour in 2004. Still I never took home more than $28,000 in any year, that I worked for the Town Talk.
We had a traumatic event this year when my stepson Justin was sleeping in the den and was woken by a burglar, who was rifling through cabinets and drawers, while looking for painkillers. Neither Justin or the burglar knew anyone else was in the house. Thankfully, Justin thought the burglar was a relative, who told Justin he was taking stuff because his mom owed him money.
A few days before the burglary a man had knocked on our door and wanted to know if anyone lived in the trailer next door. Evidently, he was casing the house and had a timeline of when my wife Rhonda and me would be at work. Anyway he had left, about 30 minutes before I arrived home from work that night.
Justin followed him from room to room and the burglar told him to tell his mom, that he would return the next night. The burglar did have an encounter with our cat, when the cat bit him and the burglar said “ouch”. The burglar would be later caught due to his own stupidity. He overdosed and the paramedics noticed painkillers all over his trailer, which included some painkillers my wife had in our house, after having major surgery. He lived only about five houses up the street from us and was arrested for burglary and sent to prison.
Facebook was launched in 2004 and was originally only for students at Harvard University.
Strongest earthquake in 40 years hits near Indonesia and the earthquake and resulting tsunami would take 290,000 lives.
Martha Stewart is convicted of felony and sentenced to five years in prison.
Gasoline continued to skyrocket to $2.10 an increase of 84 cents a gallon from the year 2000. Oil peaked at $50 a barrel in 2004.
2005 – I returned to work in 2005, when I was hired as a caregiver by Louisiana Community Care in Ball, Louisiana. Sometimes I would start a shift at 8PM and would finish the shift at 8:30 AM the next morning. It wasn’t hard work, but it was detail work, that required a set schedule of administering medicine. I found out later in Tennessee, that anyone administering medicine in Tennessee was required to take a course and pass a test to give meds to a client. However, Louisiana required no certification to give meds. I was giving meds my first night. There was a voluntary meds certification, but it wasn’t required at this time.
Later that year I went to work for Plasti-Pak in Kingsville area and I learned how much work is involved with factory work. I operated a box making machine for Procter and Gamble products the first night there. We went to work at 6:45 PM and the shift would end at 7:15 the next morning, so we would get a full 12 hours per shift, with a half hour break to eat. It was tiring and exhausting work and dangerous work. I back over my foot with a hand truck, which resulted in losing two toenails. I bought steel-toed boots the next day. It was a temp job with Westaff and the job played out soon and I was one of first laid off, since I was one of the last ones hired.
Then I went to work for Coastal Culvert operating out of Eunice, Louisiana. It was the easiest job of my life, after working the hardest job of my life at Plasti-Pak. My job was to be the manager of a new Alexandria branch for the company. My main job was to check inventory of the culvert pipes outside the office. I had to call the Eunice office each morning, to verify I was at work. Then I would read the paper, listen to old-time radio shows or watch Andy Griffith shows on the DVD player till it was time to go home that afternoon. The job lasted from November till February of 2006, before they decided to close down the Alexandria office, since there was little to no business.
I can’t say enough good things about the Coastal Culvert executives. They invited me to their annual Christmas dinner and they gave me a $100 Christmas bonus, even though I had been there less than a month.
Some of the damage from Hurricane Katrina seen the day after.
The major event of 2005 in Louisiana is when Hurricane Katrina hit the southern coast of Louisiana and a break in the levee resulted in 80 percent of New Orleans being flooded. 1,577 died from Katrina in Louisiana. Many New Orleans residents waited five days for food and water to arrive in the city. It was a colossal case of bad planning by government officials, who let people go for days without food or water.
Katrina didn’t cause much damage in Alexandria-Pineville area, but Hurricane Rita was a different story as many trees fell on houses in the area, with fallen trees closing roads.
Lance Armstrong won an amazing seventh Tour de France championship, as he demonstrated how he could live better through chemistry.
Video gamers saw the Microsoft X-Box 360 launched in 2005.
The price of gasoline climbed to $3.18 in 2005 an increase of almost $2 a gallon from the $1.26 price of 2000.
1991 – Visited my sister Jane and her family during the summer of 1991 in Pueblo, Colorado. My son Kenny and brother Tom also were on the trip. My brother Daniel drove us up Pike’s Peak and will never forget how cold it was at the top. The brakes overheated on the way down, so had to let them cool off a few minutes.
Driving through Raton Pass with an altitude of 7,834 in a four-cylinder Toyota was not easy as we gained altitude. Enjoyed the time with my sister and her family while in Colorado. Jane is an executive with the Pueblo Library and we had the chance to visit the library.
911 emergency number was being tested during the year and the airbag was invented. Gasoline was being sold for $1.12 a gallon.
1992 – This was a sad year as my 22 year marriage to Elaine ended, with her moving back to Texarkana, Arkansas. Had to file bankruptcy after she left, so I could pay bills. It would be the first of six years with no air conditioning. We had one, just never used it, since had to choose between air conditioning and eating and eating won that battle. Ate cheese sandwiches most of the time and can’t remember going out to eat during this time.
With the Town Talk garnishing my wages to pay the bankruptcy and paying child support there was little money left for anything, but the bare necessities of life.
The divorce was finalized and it was sad to spend Christmas without the family for the first time since 1972, the year when Steve was born.
Bill Clinton was elected president in 1992 and Miley Cyrus was born and will be 21 in November of 2013. The cost of gasoline dropped from $1.12 in 1991 to $1.05 in 1992.
1993 – Flew to Knoxville, Tennessee this year with the financial assistance of my brother, to be present when Tusculum College in Greeneville, Tennessee honored my dad by naming a chemistry laboratory after him. Enjoyed hearing his students and others tell of my dad’s contributions to the Chemistry department at Tusculum. Then they served a dinner in his honor, which capped off a great evening.
My daughter Debbie missed by one word of making the National Spelling Bee in 1993. I was there that night in my alma mater Pineville High School auditorium, as she battled round after round before misspelling the final word.
I don’t handle change well and had a major change at Town Talk, when I was moved from composing room to camera shop, after having worked in composing room since 1966. I have to admit I was lost as I had to learn how to operate a full-page camera, tone photos and strip in negatives using the four-color process. The negatives had to have perfectly matched register marks, or the photos would be out of focus, which could be seen easily by readers if not aligned properly.
The price of gasoline rose to $1.16 a gallon, an increase of 11 cents a gallon compared with 1992 prices. Movie tickets had risen to $4.14 and a loaf of bread cost $1.57.
Harley Davidson motorcycles observed their 90th anniversary in 1993, which means they will observe their 110th anniversary in 2013. Beanie babies were first sold in 1993 and are now collector’s items twenty years later.
1994 – Remember watching O.J. Simpson and the low-speed chase by police as they followed him to his home. He was eventually arrested and charged with the murders of Nicole Simpson and Ron Goldman. This is the year that Tonya Harding had someone hit her ice skating opponent Nancy Kerrigan in the knee, hoping to gain an advantage over her injured opponent.
Can remember Bud Selig saying the dreaded words that there would be no 1994 World Series, due to a lengthy baseball strike. I had the feeling Selig almost enjoyed cancelling the World Series, as he seemed to be letting the players know that he was in charge.
The cost of gasoline dropped to $1.09 a drop of seven cents from the 1993 price. The first satellite digital television service was launched in 1994 and Netscape was the leading browser that year.
1995 – College Drive Baptist Church lost their pastor Mark Norwood who had accepted another job with a church in North Louisiana, when Warren Steadman became the pastor that fall.
1995 was one of my favorite years since the Atlanta Braves, who I had been following since 1978 defeated the Cleveland Indians in the 1995 World Series. It was the first Braves win in a World Series, since the 1957 Milwaukee Braves defeated the New York Yankees in the 1957 World Series. The win over the Indians was only the second World Series championship for the Braves in the last 55 years.
Gasoline was still selling at $1.09 the same price as the 1994 price. Postage stamps were now selling for 32 cents. I remember back in 1963, when I was selling stamps for a nickel each and a book of 20 stamps cost only a dollar. 32 years later the same 20 stamp book sold for $6.40. Fast forward to 2013 and stamps are approaching 50 cents a stamp and a book would cost $10 for a 20 stamp book.
The biggest tragedy of 1995 was when a truck bomb exploded, while killing 168 people at the Oklahoma City Federal Building. Timothy McVeigh would later be executed for his part in the crime.
750 Chicagoans would die in a heat wave, when temperatures reached 104 degrees for five straight days.
Windows 95 is released by Microsoft and DVD’s are introduced.
O.J. Simpson is found innocent of the Nicole Simpson and Ron Goldman murders and vows to catch the REAL killer. He searched golf courses all over the United States looking for the real killer, but was unsuccessful in locating the killer. He could have saved all that time and energy by looking at the mirror and finding the REAL killer there.
Grocery prices skyrocketed in 1995 as bread was selling for $1.15 a loaf. The days of buying five loaves for a $1 at the bread thrift store were now officially over. Ground coffee could be purchased for $4.07 a pound.
Average income was $35,900 a month except for Town Talk employees. I retired from Town Talk nine years later and never earned more than $28,000 a year, while working for the Town Talk.
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.
1961 – Entered the 12th grade, after spending two years in the 10th grade at Pineville High School, due to going to summer school for the third straight year.
John F. Kennedy was sworn in as the 35th president on January 20.
Remember listening to Chicago White Sox games on KSYL AM, out of Alexandria, Louisiana, with Bob Elson and Milo Hamilton as the announcers. This was the summer that Roger Maris and Mickey Mantle were battling to break Babe Ruth’s season home run record of 60. Bob and Milo would give updates during the White Sox games, about what Roger and Mickey were doing in the home run race. Maris would hit his 61st home run on October 1, which broke the 34-year-old record of Ruth. Surprisingly only 21,000 fans were present to see the achievement of Maris.
The ill-fated Bay of Pigs invasion ended two days later. It was a failed attempt to remove Fidel Castro from power. He had taken power in 1959 and is still in power today 54 years later.
1962 – K-Mart would open its first store in Garden City Michigan on March 1 and the company is now 51-years-old. July 2 would see the first Wal-Mart store opened in Rogers, Arkansas.
My senior class graduated in May, but it would be September before I received my diploma, because I had failed English IV.
I joined the Army Reserve in Alexandria, Louisiana and was sent to Fort Polk for basic training in October. We were kept so busy at Fort Polk during basic, that we had no clue of the magnitude of the Cuban missile crisis that October. The only clue we had been what we said when we marched:
I don’t know but I believe
I’ll be in Cuba by Christmas Eve
Little did we know we were on the brink of a nuclear disaster and we didn’t know about it till we finished basic training in December.
I won’t mention any names, but a soldier from Wardville thought it would be fun, to yell from the barracks upstairs at a sergeant saying “Hey nutbrain”. That was not a smart thing to do on his part. That sergeant did not waste any time, as he made his way up in the stairs in record time. The soldier was told in no uncertain terms, that calling his sergeant “nutbrain” was not acceptable behavior.
1963 – Was on leave when the year started, but would board a passenger train for Indianapolis, Indiana at the Missouri Pacific depot in January. That depot was later torn down, but assembled in a new location in downtown Alexandria.
I can remember seeing snow falling when we went through St. Louis, then after arriving in Indianapolis saw several inches of snow on the ground. I learned what a Indiana winter was like, while being stationed at the Adjustant General’s School at Fort Benjamin Harrison. Some soldiers called it “Uncle Ben’s Rest Home”. Attended the postal school there from January through April, before returning to Louisiana having finished my six months of active duty.
It took attending a few Army Reserve meetings, before I decided to join the Regular Army and joined in May of 1963. I requested to be sent to Germany or Hawaii and received orders for Hawaii. Was flown to San Francisco and took a helicopter to the Oakland Army Terminal.
Spent eight days at the terminal before boarding flight to Hawaii. We were on a slow MATS transport plane, so the trip took several hours. When I arrived at Schofield Barracks the home of the 25th Infantry Division I heard some of the soldiers talking about having just a few days left before being discharged. I figured out that I had only 1,095 days left and they got a big kick out of that.
Hawaii is a beautiful state and liked being stationed there. The Army Service Club conducted tours of the island of Oahu and would take us on a bus trip around the island. Wish I had taken some color photos of the scenery, but only took black and white photos.
One of my first memories was seeing the Beach Boys at Conroy Bowl, the arena where entertainers appeared. Remember seeing Johnny Cash and June Carter and Sue Thompson there. It was a highlight for me, when Sue Thompson shook hands with me, while singing one of her songs.
I loved going to the beach, since the Service Club took the soldiers on busses to the different beaches each weekend. I would listen to music on my radio, while looking across the ocean toward California. Surf music was at its height in 1963 and even today I Heart radio has a station, with only surf music being featured.
By far the biggest event of 1963 was when President John F. Kennedy was assassinated on November 22. The regular company postal clerk was on leave, so I was the temporary clerk while he was gone. I had my radio on in the post office, when I heard the announcement that JFK had been shot. I immediately informed the company commander, who had not heard about it yet.
Meanwhile the postal clerk on leave to New York was flying standby and his flight was rerouted from California to Texas, which landed in Dallas about the same time as the assassination. So he got caught in the middle of all the commotion, even though he wasn’t even thinking of having to go through Dallas.
Just missed by a few minutes of seeing Lee Harvey Oswald gunned down in the Dallas Police station on the TV, in the dayroom but not too disappointed since I didn’t really want to see it anyway.
A few days later we would march in a memorial observance of JFK’s death and it was a surreal experience, knowing that the president of the United States had been assassinated and marching on the parade grounds brought it home.
Went to a Christmas show in December, that really made me homesick, when they sang “I’ll Be Home For Christmas”.
1964 – Went on temporary duty to Molokai, the island on which Father Damien established his leper colony. The ride there on a boat was a rocky one and wound up getting very sick, even if was only a 20 something mile trip from Oahu.
Can remember it pouring down that week a lot and that I heard on the radio, that Lyndon B. Johnson had defeated Barry Goldwater in the 1964 presidential election.
I can remember flying home to Pineville in October of 1964, my first trip home since leaving in May of 1963. I took my leave in October, so I could see the World Series while I was at home. I think it was this trip, that when flying back saw professional wrestler Sputnik Monroe aboard the plane. Coincidentally, he and his wrestling brother Rocket both lived in Alexandria and had performed at Jimmie Thompson’s Arena. That reminds me of the time when my brother, who knows sign language saw a deaf wrestler Silento Rodriguez being knocked from the ring and went over and signed to him, asking if he was OK and the wrestler signed back that he was OK.
1995 – This was the year that I was sent to the Big Island named Hilo, to work at the Camp Pohokoloa (sp) post office. I remember one payday, that we sold $28,000 worth of money orders and that I came up $107 short at the end of the day. The other postal worker working that day later was court-martialed, for stealing money from the post office, so I have always wondered if he didn’t take the missing money. Worst thing is that my wages were garnished till the $107 was paid back to the post office.
The post office was at a high altitude and I could see snow-capped mountains in the distance. It was cold there, even if it was Hawaii. Tsunamis hit Hilo in 1946 and 1960 killing 160 and 61 people respectively.
Saw a missionary from Pineville who was living in Hilo at this time. My mom had told me where to find her and I had a nice visit with her.
When the surgeon that performed my cancer surgery told me in November, that my duodenal cancer has a history of returning it reminded me of my immortality. It may have been negative news, but it also reminded me of many events of my 68 years of living, that were either positive and negative.
1944 – Was born on October 14, just four months after the D-Day landing and World War II would be over in Europe, about six and-a-half months later in April of 1945.
1950 – My first memory is of walking to school with my brother on the first day of school to Pineville Elementary. I remember Mrs. Price was my first grade teacher. School lunches were only 10 cents at the time.
1951 – This is the year I rode my last school bus in the second grade, when I accidentally got off the bus in Libuse, instead of five blocks from Louisiana College, so walked home that day from Libuse to Pineville. I never rode another school bus after that day.
1952 – We moved from Holloway Drive to Burns Street in February of 1952, moving from a small house to a very large house. The house payment was $55 a month, which was a bargain at the time.
1954- Think this is the year when my dad purchased our first television, when I was nine years old. He didn’t buy it for entertainment reasons, but because my sister had a lazy eye and a special screen was placed over the TV screen, that made her use her lazy eye. We bought it at L.B. Henry’s store on Main Street, when they were selling televisions. Our first TV was an Admiral.
This is also the year I really became interested in baseball and remember listening to the 1954 World Series between the New York Giants and the Cleveland Indians. Willie Mays made his famous catch in one of those games on a ball hit by Vic Wertz of the Indians.
1955 – Ray Kroc opened his first McDonalds fast food restaurant (the McDonald brothers opened the first eight, before selling out to Kroc.) Once after he bought the San Diego Padres they were playing so badly, that Kroc said over the public address system that his short order cooks at McDonalds could play better the Padres.
This was the first year I played Little League baseball. I went to a local hardware store to buy a baseball glove and wanted to buy a $6.50 glove. Only problem was that I only had $6, but the owner Mr. Brister let me have it for $6. It was a Nokona brand glove.
1956- My main memory of 1956 was when Don Larsen pitched the only perfect game in a World Series. He recently sold his uniform from that game for $756,000 and is using part of the money to pay college education expenses for his grandchildren.
1957 – Elvis Presley buys Graceland for $100,000, since their last Memphis home had attracted too many fans, with no way of keeping them off the grounds. This was the year my baby sister was born on March 23. Three months later the worst hurricane to hit Alexandria-Pineville area in my memory hit the area, with full force when Hurricane Audrey hit. Audrey had earlier killed 500 people in Cameron, Louisiana. I remember Jim Gaines of KALB Radio telling, about the progress of the hurricane and the damage being done. We had a very tall pine tree fall in our yard, but was not close to the house.
August of 1957 would bring many memories when my dad, older brother and me took a road trip in our 1949 Packard, from Louisiana to Maine. We made the usual tourist stops like Rock City, Lookout Mountain, Mount Vernon and other tourist attractions. We visited the most tourist attractions in Washington, D.C. We visited the National Archives Building, Capitol building, White House (just saw it from the fence), Lincoln Memorial, Washington Monument, Smithsonian Institution, Bureau of Mint and Engraving and watched the workers print sheets of currency.
We visited the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia and saw a show at the planetarium, plus visited the site of the Liberty Bell. However, the main thing I remember from the Philadelphia visit was seeing my first major league game. The hometown Phillies were playing the visiting Pittsburgh Pirates in Connie Mack Stadium. I remember fans bringing paper bags with bottles in them to the game. I can only imagine what was in those bottles. I also remember the Phillies fans booing their own players. The highlight of the game was when Bill Mazeroski hit a home run that hit the tin roof over our heads, in the left field bleachers. Three years later Mazeroski would hit a walkoff homer that defeated the New York Yankees in the 1960 World Series Game 7.
Saw my grandpa for the only time in my life in the hospital. Not sure where the hospital was located. It was either New Jersey or Pennsylvania. My dad’s folks were living in Millville, New Jersey.
Will never forget my dad driving through the Bowery district in New York City and seeing men laying on the sidewalk. That would be the only time for me to visit New York. Then we went on to Beverly, Massachusetts and ate at a Howard Johnson’s restaurant, with the classic orange roof. My dad was in town for an American Chemical Society convention, then after the convention ended we went to Maine, to see my uncle and aunt and their family. It was the only time I saw my cousin alive, since he was piloting a helicopter in Vietnam, when he was shot down and killed.
Then we raced back to Louisiana, stopping only one night at Warsaw, Kentucky, then my dad drove almost non-stop since school started the next day at Pineville Elementary. The next month the Milwaukee Braves would win the 1957 World Series.
1958 – Played Pony League baseball in 1958, which would be my fourth and last year of playing baseball. One night when we were playing a game, someone hollered “That plane is going to crash” and we saw a plane plummeting to the ground, about two miles from the park. It crashed about a block or two off of Main Street near a National Cemetery, but not positive about the exact crash site.
This was also the year I entered Pineville High School. It is difficult to believe that this was 55 years ago. Finding classes was not easy that first day, since I wasn’t used to attending such a big school.
The Milwaukee Braves took a three games to one lead in the 1958 World Series, but would let the Yankee,s that they had defeated in 1957 come back to win the World Series.
1959 – I remember this being the year my older brother graduated from high school. February of 1959 would see Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and the Big Bopper go down in an airplane crash in Iowa. The Big Bopper had appeared in Alexandria, Louisiana about 1958, at a KALB Radio record hop. 1959 was also the year the White Sox won the AL pennant but lost to the Los Angeles Dodgers in the World Series.
The highlight of 1959 was our trip in a Volkwagen Micro-bus, which took us to Missouri, Canada and back to Louisiana. My dad was taking classes at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, so we stayed mostly in Missouri at the 80 acre farm of my grandpa and grandma. They had only recently installed indoor plumbing in their home. I will never forget the huge console radio on the living room floor. The sound was great and I could hear the Kansas City Athletics baseball games on the radio. Saw Leave it to Beaver for the first time on their television. Don’t think it was on KALB TV in Alexandria, La., since it was on another network.
We spent part of the summer at the Chateau Cottages near Devils Lake in Wisconsin. We were on a tourist boat, when the captain asked me to pilot the ship. He sold souvenirs, while piloted the boat up the Wisconsin River. It was a relief when he took over the helm, since there were a lot of duckboats on the water.
Then after my dad finished the summer classes we drove to Chicago. It was amazing to look up at the tall buildings on the Loop and we went to a church in Berwyn, Illinois. Then we drove to Detroit and visited the Ford headquarters and also toured Post Cereals factory and can’t remember if we also toured the Kelloggs plant. We crossed into Canada at Windsor and journeyed to Brantford, Ontario where my mom had relatives. We then went to Niagara Falls and crossed back into the United States.
My dad was stopped by the Canadian Mounties, because our Volkswagen micro-bus resembled a vehicle they were looking for. At one point during our trip while driving in the United States a driver hollered “Governor Long” at us, when he saw the Louisiana license plate. This was the same year he managed to escape from a mental health institution, so Louisiana was in the news a lot that summer.
1960 – Nothing stands out about this year for me, except for the Pittsburgh Pirates defeating the New York Yankees in Game 7 of the 1960 World Series. Bill Mazeroski, who I had seen hit the home run, in Philadelphia three years earlier hit a walkoff home run over the left field wall, that made Pirates the world champions of baseball.
I recently downloaded the Kindle book Recollections and Letters of General Robert E. Lee, written by his son Captain Robert E. Lee. The Kindle edition is free and readers can start reading the 504 page book a minute, after it is purchased for free. The book is in the public domain, which is why it is free at Amazon.com.
General Lee was born on January 19, 1807 in Stratford Hall, Virginia. He graduated second in his class from West Point in 1829. He married Mary Custis the great-granddaughter of Martha Washington in 1831. He later would be he appointed Superintendent of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York in 1852.
General Robert E. Lee 1807-1870
Lee loved to communicate through letters and this book includes the text of many letters, that he wrote to his wife, sons and daughters and others he had contact with during his life. He wrote often even during the Civil War years of 1861-1865. When he wrote home he would ask his relatives to send socks for the Confederate troops, many of whom had neither shoes or socks. It had to be a real hardship for Confederate troops, to not have shoes and socks and even blankets during the winter months of the Civil War. He writes in 1862 about the death of his daughter, Anne Carter Lee who died of typhoid fever at the age of 23.
You could feel the compassion for his troops as he pleaded in his letters, for his relatives to send socks for the troops. He wrote about the death of General Stonewall Jackson and how he would be missed by the Confederate Army. He writes in one letter about how outnumbered the Confederate troops were before surrendering to General Ulyssses Grant at Appomatox. By surrendering Lee prevented the deaths of thousands of Confederate troops, who would have surely died at the hands of the Federal Army, who vastly outnumbered them.
His letters after the war relate how he was offered the presidency of Washington University, which was named Washington and Lee University in later years. His leadership was instrumental in making Washington University, one of the leading collegiate institutions of the south. His wife Mary who suffered from rheumatism often went to places with healing springs and these trips separated her from General Lee, who was living in Lexington, Virginia as the president of Washington University.
He often wrote his sons after the war and gave them advice, about how to be a successful farmer. He gave them money to help them acquire what they needed for their farms. He even told his son Robert Jr. that Robert needed to find a wife so he could settle down on a farm.
After reading these letters, a reader can tell how much family meant to General Lee and his concern for the welfare of his wife, sons and daughters and the confederate troops, who had served in the Confederate Army under his leadership. It is evident too how much his faith in God mattered to him.
Sadly, Lee only lived five years after the Civil War ended and died on October 12, 1870 in Lexington, Virginia at the age of 63 of heart disease. He is buried at Lee Chapel on the campus of Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia.
General Lee may have been a great general for the Confederate Army, but this book, doesn’t dwell on that as much, as it does on his character which is exemplified in his letters. Numerous books have been written about Lee, but due to his untimely death he was unable to write the memoirs of his life.
The entire book can be heard since there is an option to hear a reader read the book aloud. This book may not be a book Civil War buffs may want to read, since it is more about Robert E. Lee the person, rather than being about Robert E. Lee the Confederate general, but it is still a book worth reading.
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.
Last July I started losing weight for no reason. I went to VA Hospital in Pineville, Louisiana on September 28 and went to emergency room. I had been throwing up blood at home for about two months. The nurse inserted an NG tube in my nose on that Friday, then stayed overnight at the Pineville VA. It is called the Alexandria VA hospital, but it is actually located three or four miles from Alexandria.
Doctor sent me to Houston, Texas VA hospital, via ambulance on an ambulance ride of about 250 miles. Arrived in Houston late that Saturday night. I had no idea at the time, that I would be in the Houston VA hospital for 31 days.
Residue from a barium x-ray in Pineville VA hospital, prevented the Houston surgical team from getting a readable CT scan, thus delaying the surgical team’s decision on if there was cancer in the duodenum. The doctors knew there was a blockage, but didn’t know it was malignant till a second endoscopy revealed, that it was indeed cancerous, after the pathology report was released to the surgical team. The first endoscopy failed, since it was unable to reach the entire blockage, so a longer tube was used for the second endoscopy, which was successful in identifying the cancer. It was cancer of the duodenum.
The decision was then made by the surgical team to operate, but because it was major surgery, it was not easily worked into the surgery schedule. I spent my 68th birthday with family on Oct. 14, just two days before the cancer surgery.
Can remember well going into the surgical room for the surgery. The anesthesiologist proceeded into giving me anesthesia, but was alert for a while in the early stages of having anesthesia applied and can recall it being very painful with a burning sensation. While this was going on the surgical team and/or teams were busy making preparations for the surgery and I could see the nurses getting setting up for the surgery.
Can’t recall much about being in the recovery room, before spending two days in ICU, but the ICU was a beehive of activity. Was sent to a step down unit room next, before being sent to another room. Spent time in six different rooms during the 31 days at the Houston VA hospital.
Found out that most if not all cancer was removed and that chemotherapy would be needed, as a precaution to make sure there was no cancer left.
The surgical team watched my progress, after the surgery closely and I want to thank them for checking on me daily. They were very informative when they made their rounds. I also want to thank the nurses and other staffers in the hospital. Won’t mention names, since don’t know most of their names and it wouldn’t be fair to those not mentioned.
I was released from hospital on Monday night, Oct. 29. We returned home to Louisiana two days later and will return to Houston on November 21, to have the 26 staples removed and being making plans with oncology for the chemotherapy.
It has not been determined, whether the chemotherapy will be done in Houston or Pineville, but am hoping most, if not all of it will be done in Pineville, which is about 80 miles from here, compared to the 160 miles from here in Deridder, Louisiana to Houston.
Not sure when regular posts will return. Main objective now is to recover from surgery and see how the chemotherapy goes in the coming weeks.
Sorry to have not posted for over a month, but hope to be writing regularly in the next two months, depending on how the chemotherapy goes.
Thank you to the readers for understanding, why I have not been posting.
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.
I may be in the minority, but I think The First 48 is the best crime show on television. The show makes me respect homicide detectives, for being called out at all times, to arrive at the scene of homicide, for the ups and downs they face, during an investigation and how to find out the truth, when two or more criminals are telling different stories.
Most of us can only imagine what the detectives see at the scene of a homicide. Watched one particularly gruesome story about a mom and her two-year old son, being shot while sleeping.
There are a large number of cases, that are connected with drug deals gone wrong. One killer was upset that he got one gram less of the drug, so killed the drug dealer. It is surprising how many drug dealers are out there, who otherwise seem to be solid citizens. Another reason for a drug killing is when one dealer invades the territory of another drug dealer.
It is interesting to see the detectives, as they knock on doors of houses close to the crime scene. Sometimes the residents are scared and say they don’t know anything, while others will name and/or names of the shooters.
When crimes are committed inside a store or the parking lot, the detectives will ask the store manager for video that matches the time of the crime. It helps identify the suspects and sometimes they can find the car of the suspect, especially if someone gives them the name of the suspect, making it easier to find the car and search it. They have to have a warrant to search a vehicle.
The detectives follow leads to see where they will take them. They use the standard police forensics to solve cases. Ballistics experts can identify if a bullet was shot from a certain gun and fingerprints and DNA are extremely important in many cases.
When the identity of the victim is unknown for several days, it makes it almost impossible to solve a crime, until their identity becomes known.
One lady suspect was called in for questioning and was asked when she last saw the victim. She said “The last time I saw him was the day I killed him.” The detectives knowing she was a suspect in a murder in another state also elicited a confession from her for that crime.
The toughest part of being a homicide detective is having to break the news of a loved one’s death to the family. Then after they arrest a suspect they notify the family. It doesn’t provide closure for the family, but at least they know the suspect will not kill again if convicted.
Family celebrations are often missed by the detectives, when working on the first 48 hours of a homicide.
Questioning the suspects is always a crapshoot, since they have no idea if a suspect will confess, or if they will immediately ask for a lawyer, when they know they are facing a capital murder case.
We can be thankful for the homicide detectives, who are often working while we sleep, to get criminals off the streets and make our streets safer.
Everyone knows how popular NASCAR is among racing fans, but one fan took it to the extreme by continuing to watch the races for 18 months after their death.
He even had a gal pal that talked to him during the races, that liked him so much that she continued to cash his Social Security checks, even though he was dead. She didn’t get the memo, that she was supposed to stop cashing his checks after his death.
Neighbors probably became suspicious when Charles Zigler suddenly disappeared, yet there was no missing person report filed until recently and no obituary for him appeared in the local newspaper.
Linda Chase who was his girlfriend, saw he had died in his chair and left him there for 18 months. It is strange that his relatives waited 18 months, before they reported him missing, saying they had not seen him for a while.
Needless to say, Ms. Chase won’t be cashing any more of Charlie Zigler’s SS checks, since they don’t have a bank in the federal prison in Michigan, where she will be watching NASCAR races from in the future.
The Shift is a television reality show that uses no actors. It isn’t 100 percent reality due to names being changed, in some shows to protect witnesses and investigation which is mentioned as the shows open.
It is close to reality as possible for a homicide detective show. The part I like best is that the show lets you follow a case, from the crime scene, to the investigation, to the questioning of witnesses.
All of the shows are about the homicide detectives, working for the Indianapolis Police Department. When they receive a call to go to a crime scene, they drop whatever they are doing, including leaving half-eaten meals on the table at a restaurant.
Birthdays, anniversaries and other special occasions come second, once the detectives are called to a crime scene. These detectives start their investigation, as soon as they are called to a crime scene. Looking at a gruesome scene of a crime is no fun, but these detectives have to be there to gather facts and interview any witnesses.
The hardest job for the homicide detectives is notifying the family of the victim. There is no good way to let a family know, that a family member has died, but it has to be done.
The Shift is different from First 48 in that there is usually only one crime being investigated. The First 48 is a good show, but it gets confusing as they switch from one city to another often during the show. After watching a few shows, you almost feel like you know the detectives, since they don’t change from week to week like First 48.
The detectives have to interview grieving family members, to find out what may have caused the murder of the victim. It is not easy asking questions of a distraught family member, who is so overcome with grief, that they can’t focus on the questions and give coherent answers.
One particular show was baffling in that they heard a call from a jail to the two suspects. The two suspects were heard telling the inmate, that they were about to kill someone. Apparently they neglected to notice the recording that said phone calls would be monitored.
The criminals are talking to the inmate after arriving at the crime scene and you can hear the gunshots in the background. One of the suspects is telling the other to shut off the phone. The detectives are talking about how the jurors will love to hear those phone calls.
However, when the outcome is shown at the end of the show, they tell us that one had the charges dismissed against him and the other guy is found not guilty. So instead of sending these two guys to prison, they are set free and walking the streets of Indianapolis. It would have been interesting to have been at the trial, to see how it played out and if there was a problem with the taped evidence from the conversations of the alleged criminals.
I watched one show in which the detectives separated two suspects and told the other suspect that the other suspect had implicated the one they were interviewing, when in fact the other suspect had refused to talk to the detectives.
The worst case scenario for the homicide detectives is for a suspect to ask for a lawyer, which ends the interview abruptly and leaving the detectives to search for more evidence, since they couldn’t get a confession.
It is surprising though how many suspects, will break down and confess the crime, when they could have asked for a lawyer and avoided further questioning. The detectives will tell the suspects to tell the truth, because they will feel better, when in fact they are more or less sending themselves to prison by admitting they were the killer.
The detectives read the rights of the suspects, before questioning them, so their confession will stand up in courtroom.
The Shift is currently on Netflix, but no new shows have been made recently. Their Facebook page is full of viewers wanting the show brought back. It is my favorite show of that type and can be addictive, since it interesting, to see how police go about their investigation and how the suspects try to manipulate the police by lying to them, which really infuriates the detectives and you can’t blame them for being upset. The detectives if they have enough evidence will have the suspect tell their side. If they refuse to co-operate, then they will return them to their cell.
The show follows the homicide detectives, when they pay a surprise visit to a suspect’s home and wherever they are living at the time. One show followed the detectives to Minneapolis, when they found out the suspect had left the state, but came back empty-handed, when the suspect didn’t confess, so they had no choice, but to let them go.
Linda and Joe Wingo have been charged with fraud in a 49 count indictment listed in a 71 page document that details their misuse of funds in the name of the Angel Food Ministries that provided food at affordable prices for those in need.
The Angel Food Ministries organization has helped less fortunate families put food on their table at reasonable prices.The organization was founded in 1994 by Joe and Linda Wingo. They provided groceries for struggling families for about half the price, of what they could be bought at a grocery store.
However due to the Wingos being indicted on fraud charges, the ministry no longer exists. Greed seems to be the motivating factor that caused the Wingos to focus more on themselves, than the people they were supposed to be helping.
Michael J. Moore, U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia made this statement about the charges:
“As alleged in the indictment, these Defendants raised money in the name of Christian charity, and then used a number of schemes to defraud the organization.”
The ministry reportedly had expenses of $17,000, while reporting revenue of $96,000 in 2006. Meanwhile the Wingos and their two sons reported income of $2.1 million for the year. One of the more egregious law violations was that Joe Wingo set up a corporation to buy a personal jet, then leased the jet to Angel Food Ministries for a $10,000 a month profit.
Menus were posted on website to show what foods were on the menu for a certain month. The following menu shows the food items on the September 2010 menu:
If convicted of the fraud charges Joe Wingo could receive a 105 year prison sentence, while his wife Linda would receive a 85 year sentence. Linda also told an employee to remove a hard drive from a computer and destroy it to thwart a federal grand jury investigation.
I was doing a search for Angel Food Ministries to see they had a local distribution point, when I encountered many articles about the Wingos being indicted.
Could find no information about a trial, so the prosecutors are probably still gathering evidence and should announce a trial date sometime in the future.
It is sad that a Christian ministry was enriching their own bank accounts, while seemingly concerned about those who couldn’t afford to pay exorbitant prices, for their groceries at local supermarkets.
Angel Food Ministries no longer is an active ministry, thanks to the Wingos who founded the ministry 17 years ago. Instead of focusing on the ministry the Wingos were busy padding their bank account, by using unscrupulous methods to enrich themselves.
The ministry was a good one, until the Wingos saw there was money to be made through the ministry. They funneled money to themselves instead of the ministry, but justice may have finally caught up with them. Wearing shackles to the courtroom may have given them the message, that they are in serious trouble, even though they deny any wrongdoing.
For more information on Angel Food Ministries and the charges against the Wingos:
The First 48 is one of the most realistic reality shows on television. The homicide detectives on the show race against the clock, to solve cases in the first 48 hours, after the crime has been committed.
It makes sense to act swiftly, before the suspect or suspects can find a hiding place from the homicide detectives or leave town. Another reason is that the perpetrators of the crime if there are more than one suspect are likely, to concoct a story so that if questioned by the detectives their stories will be the same.
Complaints About Predominantly Black Suspects
There has been some criticism of the show, for showing cases with mostly black criminals as the suspects. They probably could do a better job on that score, since the show has many more cases with black suspects.
Once the filming begins the show is not going to stop filming, because they find out a suspect is black.
One Suspect Fan of Show
One suspect in a show I watched yesterday looked into the camera and said he was a fan of the show and then said “Hello America”.
You would think a criminal that watches the show would ask for a lawyer from the start of the interrogation, since the detectives are able to obtain confessions if given the chance.
Suspects Forget About Miranda Rights
It is almost like the suspects have forgotten their Miranda rights which say:
You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to speak to an attorney, and to have an attorney present during any questioning. If you cannot afford a lawyer, one will be provided for you at government expense.
However, suspect after suspect will forget about the Miranda rights and forget the part about anything they say could be used against them. Instead they freely give information about a crime
The detectives are smart to not even mention attorneys during the interrogation. You can tell on the show that when a suspect asks for an attorney, that the detectives hate to see a suspect ask for an attorney.
If they are not allowed to ask any more questions, then the suspect is more or less useless to them, because the suspect’s attorney will tell them to not talk to anyone about the case. They then have to try to find other evidence or witnesses, if the case is not strong enough to take to court.
One suspect on a recent show tired of being yelled at by the detectives and told them he is through and that they can yell at his lawyer.
Pit One Suspect Against Another
Sometimes the homicide detectives on the will pit one suspect against another, by telling the suspect they are interviewing, that the other suspect or suspects have already told them the truth and that the suspect will find it is to their benefit to tell the truth.
On one show a suspect was being interviewed and says he only knocked on the door of the crime scene house. Later on it was revealed he was the shooter, while he portrayed himself as an innocent bystander, when first interviewed.
More Than One Crime Scene
Most of the shows have more than one crime being investigated, but some shows do only have one crime investigated. Some of the same detectives will be seen on many shows.
The shows are centered on metropolitan areas like Cincinnati, Memphis, Miami, Houston and other large cities.
The First 48 to me is a realistic look at how a homicide investigation is conducted. It shows how leads and tips that are called in, are followed up.
A witness in a homicide case told the detectives where the marijuana was thrown out off an interstate. Traffic was stopped on that side of the interstate, till they could search for the marijuana, but eventually the detectives called off the search.
Then when that witness is questioned again, he reveals that the marijuana was thrown in a garbage can in the neighborhood, where the crime was committed, so the interstate was closed down for nothing and the witness wound up being a suspect and was charged with murder.
Some people may think the show reveals too much about how homicide detectives solve cases and question suspects. A criminal watching the show may learn what not to do, by watching the detectives question suspects. The detectives tell the suspects to tell the truth, but if they do tell the truth they are only incriminating themselves and helping the detectives solve the case.
Anyone watching this show should be forewarned, that it can be very habit-forming, because these are real cases, that are shown from the crime scene till they are charged with murder in most shows.
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.
Gov. Robert F. Kennon was governor of Louisiana from 1952-1956.
It was almost 60 years ago when Louisiana State Police Superintendent Francis Grevemberg started making surprise raids on gambling establishments in the 50′s and seized and smashed slot machines, rendering them to the point of which they were completely useless.
Grevemberg and his associates made 1,000 raids and destroyed 8,229 slot machines during 1952-1956 when Gov. Robert F. Kennon was the governor of Louisiana.
Gangster Frank Costello was forced out of the slot machine business in New York City when Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia destroyed the machines and pushed them into a watery grave in the 30′s.
Senator Huey P. Long sensing a chance to make some quick money offered Costello a deal, where he could set up his slot machines in Louisiana, with Long demanding ten percent of the profits.
That is how Louisiana became saturated with slot machines and Grevemberg was given the task of ridding the state of slot machines.
Former Louisiana governor, Edwin Edwards was a Crowley attorney at the time and argued that the slot machines were legal, since they were being taxed by the state. For more on the raids and the history of slot machines see this Eunice Today article:
Louisiana State Police Superintendent Francis Grevemberg shown smashing slot machines during a raid in the 50′s on a gambling establishment during the Gov. Robert F. Kennon administration.
Governor Earl K. Long took office in 1956 and ordered a stop to the destruction of slot machines. Little did Long or anyone else for that matter foresee that the gambling industry was down, but not down for the count.
Now it is almost 60 years later and slot machines are in operation, by the thousands in Louisiana casinos. There are now 22 casinos in operation currently in the state of Louisiana.
With the proliferation of casinos today in Louisiana, the chances of slot machines being destroyed are slim and none. The taxes from the casinos are pouring into Louisiana coffers and any opposition to gambling casinos is probably a waste of time.
So instead of smashing slot machines being smashed, they are kept in good repair, so the state of Louisiana can continue to reap tax dollars from their use.
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:
1959 was not a good year for Governor Earl K. Long, the Democratic governor of Louisiana. Governor Long wanted to retain his position as governor, but was prevented from running again, since he was not allowed to succeed himself. So that problem, along with the return of his heavy drinking and taking up smoking again, combined to place him in a bad mental state. In addition he was taking pills to make him sleep, in combination with uppers and downers.
The situation was exacerbated when he was in a rage as he ranted during a legislative session. He later meant to apologize for his behavior, but instead flew into another rage instead.
The following short audio of Governor Long ranting in the legislature can be heard here:
Jesse Bankston, the Louisiana Director of Hospitals, thought that Long needed immediate treatment, so had him restrained for two days, while mulling over what to do next about the governor.
It was determined that it would be better to transport Governor Long to an out-of-state hospital, so that he could not use his power of governor, so he was sent to a Galveston, Texas hospital.
Taken to Galveston Hospital
He was strapped into a gurney and flown from Baton Rouge to Galveston and taken to John Sealy Hospital. Dr. Titus Harris had been informed that Governor Louisiana was there on his own volition, but found out that was not the case.
Governor Long filed papers to be released from the hospital, after threatening his wife Blanche with federal kidnapping charges, for having him transported across state line to Texas. He then made a deal with Blanche and Russell Long, that he would consent to be sent to Oschner Foundation Hospital in New Orleans.
However after one day there, he told Blanche wanted to Winnfield to rest. Blanche told him that he had promised to stay at Oschner, but Earl said that he didn’t say how long he would stay.
Blanche Long worried about what the governor might do next, had Chester Williams the coroner of Baton Rouge prepare the papers, to have Governor Long committed to a state mental institution. Meanwhile Long who had left Oschner Foundation Hospital in New Orleans, was intercepted by six sheriff’s deputies and taken to Baton Rouge.
This paragraph from Inside Northside Magazine describes the chaotic scene at the courthouse:
The deputies dragged the governor of Louisiana, kicking and screaming, out of the car. They punched him, knocked him to the ground, and put him in their car. He was examined by the coroner, who was not a psychiatrist, and by a psychiatrist who had never met him. The psychiatrist rendered a diagnosis of paranoid schizophrenia, which was quite commonly used at that time to commit anyone for any reason.
He was taken to Southeast Louisiana Hospital in Mandeville, where he was admitted under the commitment order. While he was treated there, the acting director of the hospital, Dr. Charles Belcher, later indicated that they had not made any final diagnosis of his true condition.
Governor Long contacted Joe Sims to represent him in a habeas corpus hearing in Covington, Louisiana. The governor had a trick up his sleeve though. He called a meeting of the state hospitals board to meet before the hearing.
The governor had Jesse Bankston removed from office at the meeting, then appointed a friend of his as the new director. The new director then proceeded to fire Dr. Charles Belcher the superintendent of Southeast Louisiana Hospital. The new superintendent, then stated that there was no reason for Governor Long, to remain in the hospital and authorized his release.
Feared Being Poisoned
Governor Long was taken to the Green Springs Motel in Covington to eat breakfast, but refused to eat food off his plate, fearing it might be poisoned, so helped himself to the food on the plates of the others eating there.
He would spend the next few days at the Pine Manor Motel in Covington and while he was there Blaze Starr a stripper, from Bourbon Street in New Orleans paid him a visit on July 2, 1959. His romance with Starr seemed to be more of a revenge thing, after Blanche had him committed.
Long Garnered National Attention
Governor Long was in the national news that summer and we happened to be on vacation from Louisiana to Canada. One vehicle we encountered on the trip had someone holler “Hey Governor Long” at us. They probably couldn’t help themselves, when they saw the Louisiana license plates on our vehicle.
To read the complete article about him being committed the entire Inside Northside Magazine article, which is very lengthy can be read here:
53 years have passed since our governor went off the deep end and while researching today, have learned more about those days in one day, than what I have learned in the previous 53 years.
Runs For Lieutenant Governor
Governor Long was intent on becoming governor, but when he saw it wasn’t going to be allowed, he ran on the Noe-Long ticket with former governor of Monroe. The ticket came in a disappointing fourth place polling only 97,654 votes. They finished behind deLesseps Morrison with 278,956 votes, former governor Jimmie Davis with 213,551 votes and Senator Willie Rainach, who Long had ranted against in his legislature outburst received 143.095. The three candidates garnered 635,602 votes compared to the 97,654 votes for the Noe-Long ticket.
It looked like the political career of Governor Earl K. Long was dead in the water. But this is Earl K. Long we are talking about and he entered the race for the 8th Congressional District against incumbent Rep. Harold B. McSween. Surprisingly he won the election but died on September 5, 1960 at the age of 65, before he could take office.
The years 1959 and 1960 were turbulent years for Governor Long. It all started with his rant in the Louisiana legislature, then progressed to him being committed in two mental institutions, firing the administrators to be released. Then came his affair with the Bourbon Street stripper Blaze Starr, his loss as a lieutenant governor candidate in 1959, then he arose from the ashes to win the 8th Congressional representative seat, shortly before dying.
I only saw Governor Long once. He was at the Continental Trailways bus station making a speech on the stump, while handing out chickens to those, he hoped would vote for him.
Louisiana politicians were and are still known for taking their politics seriously and nobody took politics more seriously than Earl K. Long.
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:
Alger Hiss who was convicted of perjury in 1950 after a House Un-American Activites committee which included Richard Nixon sent the case to a grand jury and eventually led to his conviction.
Richard Nixon was a first term Republican congressman, from California, when he was appointed a member of subcommittee of three to investigate the Alger Hiss case. Nixon, Edward Hebert of Louisiana and John McDowell from Pennsylvania were given the job to determine whether Whittaker Chambers or Alger Hiss were giving truthful testimony.
They found enough evidence to bring the Hiss case to a grand jury, even though FBI chief J. Edgar Hoover had told them, he was told to not cooperate with the committee. The committee investigators unearthed enough evidence, to bring the case to the grand jury.
Alger Hiss had advanced into a high position in the U.S. government, serving as an assistant to Secretary of State Edward Stettinus. Hiss accompanied Stettinus,to the Yalta Conference in February of 1945. The purpose of the conference ,was for President Franklin D. Roosevelt, Joseph Stalin and Winston Churchill, to plan the defeat of Adolf Hitler, which came a couple of months after the conference.
Hiss would later be found to have given intelligence to the Russians as early as the 1930′s. The fact that reached such a high standing, in the American government is troubling. It was alarming at the support he received from top government officials during his trials.
Chambers would produce five rolls of micro-film, which would become known as the “Pumpkin Papers”, since Chambers had hidden them inside a pumpkin.
This website has extensive information about the Pumpkin Papers:
A grand jury indicted Hiss on two perjury charges, but he wasn’t charged with espionage, because of the statute of limitations. Hiss then went to trial on May 31, 1949 and ended in a hung jury on July 7 of the same year.
The case against Hiss seemed to take a turn for the worse, when the key government witness, Chambers admitted he had given false testimony in the past. Hiss had friends in high places, in President Harry Truman, who called the trial a “red herring” and Supreme Court Justice Felix Frankfurter, who thought Hiss was innocent.
The second trial which started on May 17, 1949 ended on November 17, 1949 and it ended on January 21, 1950.
Typewriter Key Evidence
The key evidence against Hiss was that experts identified his typewriter, as the one which had been used to type stolen documents, then the top-secret papers were given to the Russians. Hess claimed until he died, that he had been framed and that the government, had committed forgery with his typewriter, to make it appear the documents, had been typed on his Woodstock typewriter.
Hiss Receives Five Year Sentence
Alger Hiss was convicted of two counts and sentenced to five years in prison, on January 25, 1960, on two perjury counts. He would be released 44 months later on November 27, 1954. Ironically, Hiss would be allowed to practice law in Massachusetts d on August 5, 1975. Hiss died on November 15, 1996 in New York City, claiming his innocence to the end.
Richard Nixon handout from his first Congressional election in 1946 in California which he won.
Nixon Rises to National Prominence
Richard Nixon made the most, of his first national exposure and would be elected a U.S. Senator from California in 1950. Two years later in 1952 he would be chosen to be the vice presidential candidate in the 1952 presidential election in which Dwight D. Eisenhower would become the first Republican president, since Herbert Hoover left office in 1929. Nixon would serve as vice president until 1961.
Nixon would make the headlines many times in the future. Nobody who was around back then, can forget his “Checkers” speech, when he addressed questions about his campaign finances.
Nixon Attacked in Peru, Venezuela
He would make news again when he confronted anti-American demonstrators in Peru, then his limousine would be attacked in Caracas, Venezuela, with both events in 1958.
Kitchen Debate With Khrushchev
Who can forget Nixon’s famous “Kitchen Debate” with Russian leader Nikita Khrushchev, over the merits of capitalism and communism in 1959?
Lost 1960 Presidential Election
Nixon would win the Republican nomination. in 1960, but after a poor performance in the first presidential debate, would lose the presidential election, to John F. Kennedy by a slim 120,000 votes.
Loses By 300,000 Votes in California Governor Race
Many wrote the obituary for Nixon’s political career, when he lost to Gov. Pat Brown in the 1962 gubernatorial race, by a margin of 300,000 votes.
Rises From the Ashes in 1968
After his loss in California, Nixon practiced law and supported 1964 presidential candidate Barry Goldwater, then supported 1966 congressional candidates. He was nominated to be the 1968 Republican candidate, while Senator Hubert H. Humphrey was nominated by the Democrats, at a tumultuous convention, in Chicago due to demonstrations, by anti-Vietnam war protesters in the streets of Chicago. Nixon wins by a half million votes over Humphrey.
Wins Overwhelming Victory in 1972
Nixon would win every state except Massachusetts and the District of Columbia, in an overwhelming victory over Democratic candidate George McGovern.
President Gerald Ford, Betty Ford, Pat Nixon and former President Richard Nixon walk toward helicopter, that would leave with them for the last time on August 9, 1974 after his resignation.
Watergate Ends His Political Career
Five men broke into the Democratic National Convention offices, in the Watergate Hotel on June 17, 1972. There was no reason for the break-in as Nixon won the 1972 presidential election easily.
Nixon would use every political trick imaginable to cover up, White House involvement with the cover-up of the break-in. Nixon’s tactic was to deny, deny and deny some more, that the White House was involved. His own taping system in the White House came back to haunt him. We will never forget his famous “I Am Not A Crook” speech, but eventually admitted he was a crook by leaving office in disgrace, becoming the first president to resign from office. We can only imagine, what Nixon and his wife were feeling as the helicopter, left the White House grounds, for the last time.
Jack Webb was born on April 2, 1920 in Santa Monica, California. He died at the age of 62 on December 23, 1982 in West Hollywood California.
His father left home before Webb was born and he never knew his dad. He joined the Army Air Force but asked for a hardship discharge after not making the grade in flight training.
Acted in Old Time Radio
Webb starred in an ABC radio comedy the Jack Webb Show in 1946. He then starred in several detective themed old-time radio shows. Pat Novak For Hire, Johnny Modero, Pier 23 and Jeff Regan, Investigator which were his best known radio programs prior to Dragnet.
His big break came when Dragnet was first broadcast on radio in 1949, then would run till 1954. Webb portrayed Sgt. Joe Friday as a no-nonsense detective, who didn’t mince words. The television version of Dragnet began televising in 1952 with Ben Alexander cast as Detective Frank Smith, concurrently with the radio version till 1954, when the radio series ended. The televised version would remain on the air till 1959. There was a radio or television version of Dragnet being heard or seen for ten continuous years.
Webb loved jazz and starred in Pete Kelly’s Blues which on radio for less than two months, but would be the predecessor to the film version, of Pete Kelly’s Blues released in 1955. Then Pete Kelly’s Blues was also shown on television in 1959, but only 13 episodes were aired, before it was cancelled.
Dragnet also had a presence in radio, television and movies and it was successful in all three forms of media. A new television version of the original Dragnet named Dragnet 1967 ran till 1970 with Harry Morgan portraying Officer Bill Gannon.
Jack Webb grew up with severe asthma yet was a heavy smoker as can be seen by this advertisement mentioning that he smoked two packs a day. Smoking two packs a day today would cost roughly $180 a month.
Webb became so involved in production, that he wasn’t seen on the television screen often. He created Adam 12 which ran from 1968-1975 and Ohara, U.S. Treasury which was shown from 1971-1972.
Julie London former wife of Jack Webb and her husband Bobby Troup on Emergency television program that aired on NBC.
Jack Webb showed he had no animosity toward his former wife Julie London, by hiring her and her husband to appear in his Emergency television program. They appeared in but two of the 133 episodes that were aired.
Webb was married to Julie London from 1947-1953. He then married Dorothy Towne from 1955-1957, Jackie Loughery from 1958-1964. He widowed his last wife who he was married to from 1980-1982.
Jack Webb was working on a third television version of Dragnet with Kent McCord from Adam 12 lined up to be his partner, but died of a heart attack at 62.
Chief Daryl Gates of the Los Angeles Police Department retired Badge 714 after his death and Mayor Tom Bradley ordered all flags to flown at half-mast in his honor. He would be buried with a replica Badge 714.
Jack Webb’s tombstone is typical of Webb. There is no huge ornamental tombstone, but a plain tombstone, with his name and his life span.
This article written by Ben Alexander, gives us a better idea of what the real Jack Webb was like. This paragraph tells me all I need to know about Jack Webb. I am inserting it here for those who may not have time to read the article:
Look at Victor Rodman. He had been disabled in an accident, and one of Jack’s joys about creating “Noah’s Ark” was the chance it gave him to employ Victor in a role that didn’t require walking around. Jack was thrilled with “Noah’s Ark” because it gave Victor a chance to prove what a fine actor he is. And a big reason Jack is eager to revive the show is that Victor will be working again.
The Internet Movie Database biography includes some interesting trivia about Jack Webb:
Was buried with full honors befitting a LAPD detective, including a 17-gun salute.
Had just over 6,000 jazz albums in his private collection.
At the height of “Dragnet’s” popularity, people would actually call the LAPD wanting to speak to Webb’s character, Sgt. Joe Friday. The Department eventually came up with a stock answer to the large volume of calls: “Sorry, it’s Joe’s day off.”
Was a huge baseball fan, and chose badge number 714 for Sgt. Friday because it was the number of home runs Babe Ruth hit.
Jack Webb has created a lot of shows since Dragnet, but will always remember him, telling us what department he was working out of in the police department.
The color version of Dragnet was good, but there was something special, about the black and white version of the 50′s. Those shows seemed to be more simple. Who can ever forget the show, about the boy who got a rifle for Christmas and accidentally shoots his friend? This is the three-part The Big .22 Rifle For Christmas episode. Part 3 is very emotional as the father talks to his dead son, telling him what he would have received for Christmas. Then to make it even more emotional, the father of the boy killed,then gives the presents for his son, to the boy who shot his son.
The pledge signed by many children and adults to abstain from drinking alcoholic beverages.
Frances Willard died on February 17, 1898, which was 22 years before the 18th amendment, also known as the Volstead Act went into effect in 1920.
She had a firsthand knowledge of the effects of alcohol, when her brother became an alcoholic in the 1860′s. Willard would be one of the founders of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union in 1874 and then became the president of the worldwide WCTU in 1888.
While concentrating mostly on her fight against the use of alcohol, Willard also became active in the fight against the international drug trading.
Her life came to an end at the age of 58 due to being an influenza victim. However, she had laid the groundwork for both the 18th amendment, which would prohibit the use of alcohol in the United States and the 19th Amendment which also was known as the Women’s Suffrage amendment.
Prohibition Becomes Law
Congress passed the Volstead Act (18th Amendment) on October 28, 1919, over-riding the veto of President Woodrow Wilson. 36 of the 50 states had ratified the 18th Amendment and went into effect on January 17, 1920.
While prohibition was a good idea, it was almost impossible to enforce with 30,000 to 100,000 speakeasies, in New York City in 1925. A speakeasy could be closed in one location, then would pop up in another location, within days of last place being closed.
The amendment was not only not being obeyed, but the U.S. government lost millions of dollars in tax revenue, while the bootleggers were keeping all the money for themselves and the speakeasy owners and patrons also avoided paying any tax.
Al Capone's power was at its heights during Prohibition with him drawing $60 million in alcohol sales in 1927 and bribing politicians with his profits to keep his machine going.
Organized crime saw that Prohibition would be a huge moneymaker for them and would deliver the alcohol and take payments, upon delivery of that alcohol, unless other arrangements had been made, prior to the delivery.
Gangsters like Al Capone saw a chance to take their cut from the illicit alcohol sales. Capone raked in $60 million in alcohol sales in 1927.
Prohibition Turns Citizens Into Criminals
The same citizens that patronize legal bars, now flocked to speakeasies to drink their alcohol, which turned them into criminals. The magnitude of lawbreakers was too much for law enforcement to contend with. Women started drinking in larger numbers, than ever before.
These speakeasy patrons from the Prohibition era don't look too concerned about being raided by law enforcement officials.
We have seen videos of the Roaring 20′s, showing women dancing the Charleston and other dance of that era. Problem is that almost all of those women were violating the 18th amendment, but in the PBS series Prohibition, by Ken Burns, these women didn’t seem to be worried about being caught by law enforcement agencies.
Why Prohibition Didn’t Work
The main reason is that Americans who wanted to drink, found ways to purchase alcohol, whether it be from an individual selling from their home, from a speakeasy where alcohol was readily available and some resorted to making their own alcohol through the moonshining process.
Moonshine stills being destroyed by law enforcement officials.
The failure to prevent organized crime, from becoming involved in sale of bootleg alcohol, may have been one of the major reasons, that bootlegging operations were so successful, despite the bootleggers, sometimes only being neighbors supplying moonshine to their neighbors in rural America.
Joseph Kennedy, the father of President John F. Kennedy and the patriarch of the Kennedy family, has been rumored for years to have gotten rich in the bootlegging industry. Frank Costello of the Mafia even testified that Joseph and him had been partners in the bootlegging industry. However, no concrete evidence of Kennedy being involved in bootlegging, has never been made public.
Law enforcement officials could only pick and choose which speakeasies to close and what moonshine stills to destroy, but the problem was that there were thousands of criminals, violating the 18th amendment and there was not enough jails and prisons, to house all the violators.
Prohibition ended when it was evident that there were millions of Americans, who were going willing to risk, although not a serious risk in most cases, going to jail, rather than stop drinking.
75 Bible References Regarding Drinking
The 75 Bible references from the Signal Press in Evanston, Illinois clearly show that God’s laws prohibit drinking. Here are just a few of them from the tract:
1) Genesis 9:20-26 – Noah became drunk; the result was immorality and family trouble.
3) Leviticus 10:9-11 – God commanded priests not to drink so that they could tell the difference between the holy and the unholy.
6) Deuteronomy 29:5-6 – God gave no grape juice to Israel nor did they have intoxicating drink in the wilderness.
10) 1 Samuel 25:32-38 – Nabal died after a drunken spree.
11) 2 Samuel 11:13 – By getting Uriah drunk, David hoped to cover his sin.
12) 2 Samuel 13:28-29 – Amnon was drunk when he was killed.
13) 1 Kings 16:8-10 – The king was drinking himself into drunkenness when he was assassinated
14) 1 Kings 20:12-21 – Ben-Hadad and 32 other kings were drinking when they were attacked and defeated by the Israelites.
17) Proverbs 4:17 – Alcoholic drink is called the wine of violence.
18) Proverbs 20:1 – Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging.
20) Proverbs 23:21 – Drunkenness causes poverty.
21) Proverbs 23:29-30 – Drinking causes woe, sorrow, fighting, babbling, wounds without cause and red eyes.
22) Proverbs 23:31 – God instructs not to look at intoxicating drinks.
23) Proverbs 23:32 – Alcoholic drinks bite like a serpent, sting like an adder.
24) Proverbs 23:33 – Alcohol causes the drinker to have strange and adulterous thoughts, produces wilfulness, and prevents reformation.
There are too many to list them all, but the entire list can be found at:
I was looking at funny newspaper clippings, when I was astounded to find out in one, that teenage pregnancy drops off after age 25. And to think all these years I had thought it dropped off at the age of 19.
Readers can blame me for captions below the clippings.
It is amazing what you can learn in a newspaper story or advertisement.
I was thinking the same thing when I saw two men approaching me with machetes and AK-47 machine guns and a rolling pin. My only thought, was that I have to get that rolling pin away from them.
This wife decided to let a stranger decide whether she would have the cat or her husband left after they made their decision.
I think it is safe to say that this tombstone will never be sold unless someone changes their name to Hendel Bergen Heinzel.
This is major news and should have been on the front page, not in the police blotter. It wouldn't hurt to send a photographer to get a closeup of the running pot pie.
I can think of a lot of reasons to not answer this ad.
Those federal agents probably still haven't recovered from the shock of finding weapons in a gun shop.
I would think twice before going to this health clinic.
This woman has her priorities slightly mixed up.
It will take a fast talking salesperson to pull this one off.
If all else fails, blame it on the babies.
The same doctor in the ad had just spent thirty minutes telling a patient to switch from candy cigarettes to Camels.
You can't be too careful while using camouflaged paint.
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.
A second plane prepares to hit the south tower of the World Trade Center while the north tower is already in flames from being hit earlier.
Ten years have passed since Americans felt the impact of terrorism in a way never experienced before. Most of us can recall where we were and what we were doing that Tuesday morning of September 11, 2001.
I had called the mechanic about the progress being made on our car, when he told me to turn on the television and it would stay on the rest of the day. Little did I know how many Americans would lose their lives that day at the hand of terrorists.
Five Hijackers Board Flight 11
The day started in Boston with Mohamed Atta and al-Omari boarding American Airlines Flight 11 at 7:35 AM travelling from Boston to Los Angeles. Five minutes later three more hijackers board the plane. The flight leaves Logan International Airport at 7:59 AM. The first evidence of a hijacking being in progress, was when orders to climb to 35,000 feet were ignored.
Betty Ong, a flight attendant on Flight 11 informs American Airlines that a hijacking is in progress at 8:19 AM. At 8:26 Flight 11 makes a 100 degree turn and is now travelling on a path to New York City.
Three More Planes Boarded By Hijackers
While Flight 11 was en route to New York City, hijackers boarded three more planes. United Airlines Flight 175 departs from Boston and is also originally headed for Los Angeles leaving at 8:14 AM with five hijackers aboard the flight. Six minutes later a third plane, American Airlines Flight 77 would leave Dulles International Airport in Washington for Los Angeles at 8:20 AM with five hijackers aboard.
At 8:42 AM the fourth plane, United Airlines Flight 93 would depart from Newark International Airport with a original destination of San Francisco, with four hijackers aboard.
Flight 11 Hits North Tower
Two F-15′s were scrambled from Otis Air National Guard Base in Massachusetts to intercept Flight 11, but seconds later at 8:46 the plane hit the north tower at 446 MPH and loaded with fuel since it was headed to Los Angeles.
The impact of the plane and the burning fuel knocked three stairwells out, leaving those in the floors above hopelessly trapped with no way out.
As many as 250 or as few as 100 people jumped to their deaths, rather than being caught in the fiery inferno inside the burning building.
CNN is the first national network to break the story on the plane hitting the World Trade Center at 8:49 AM. Carol Lin the CNN anchor made this announcement:
This just in. You are looking at obviously a very disturbing live shot there. That is the World Trade Center, and we have unconfirmed reports this morning that a plane has crashed into one of the towers of the World Trade Center. CNN Centerright now is just beginning to work on this story, obviously calling our sources and trying to figure out exactly what happened, but clearly something relatively devastating happening this morning there on the south end of the island of Manhattan. That is once again, a picture of one of the towers of the World Trade Center.
President Bush is appraised of the situation while visiting Emma E. Booker Elementary School, in Sarasota, Florida at 8:55 AM. This was before the second tower had been hit. He was probably told of the other flights still in the air that were being hijacked. However, presidential advisor Karl Rove told the president that the airplane was a small twin engine aircraft.
Calls like this which was made at 9:00 AM would be one of many, made by passengers to their loved ones that day:
9:00: Lee Hanson receives a second call from his son Peter, aboard Flight 175: “It’s getting bad, Dad. A stewardess was stabbed. They seem to have knives and Mace. They said they have a bomb. It’s getting very bad on the plane. Passengers are throwing up and getting sick. The plane is making jerky movements. I don’t think the pilot is flying the plane. I think we are going down. I think they intend to go to Chicago or someplace and fly into a building. Don’t worry, Dad. If it happens, it’ll be very fast. My God, my God.” The call ends abruptly, as Lee Hanson hears a woman scream.
At 9:02 Flight 175 hits the south tower at a speed of 590 miles per hour. The plane’s impact caused parts of the plane to fall to the ground, as many as six blocks away.
The president enters a classroom to read The Pet Goat, when Chief of Staff, Andrew Card informs him of a second building being hit at 9:05.
Osama bin Laden is mentioned as a probable suspect in a CBS News report at 9:17 AM. At 9:26 AM all civilian planes are forbidden to take off by the FAA.
Hijackers Take Over Flight 93
Flight controllers in Cleveland hear the Flight 93 cockpit being taken over by hijackers at 9:28. The tower supervisor at Reagan International Airport discloses to the Secret Service at the White House that a plane is heading their way and is not talking to the tower at 9:33 AM. A minute later the tower would call the Secret Service again, to inform them that the plane was now headed to the airport.
At 9:37 AM Flight 77 crashes into the western side of the Pentagon building killing 64 passengers and 125 Pentagon personnel.
Three of the hijacked planes had hit their targets from 8:46 when the first plane hit the north tower of the World Trade Center to the Pentagon building being hit at 9:37.
Flight 93 crashed in Shanksville, Pennsylvania after passengers fought with hijackers.
Attention Focuses On Flight 93
With Flight 93 being the only one of the hijacked planes still in the air, its flight path was being watched closely. The gravity of the situation is shown by the White House and Capitol building being evacuated at 9:43 AM.
The following intelligence was gathered that made it almost a certainty that Osama bin Laden was behind the attacks:
President George Bush leaves Sarasota-Bradenton Airport for an undisclosed location. With the uncertainty of not knowing what other attacks may be planned, it may have been best for the president to be in the air when his plane took off at 9:57 AM. Two minutes later at 9:59 AM the south tower collapses in New York City.
Meanwhile, the passenger revolt began on Flight 93 at 9:59 AM. The passengers now knew that their plane was going to be the next plane used to hit a building, so decided to rush the cockpit and gain control of the plane.
Flight 93 would crash at 10:03 apparently because of the fighting in the cockpit, between the passengers and hijackers. The flight crashed 80 miles southeast of Pittsburgh in Somerset County, Pennsylvania.
We may never know for sure, what the target of Flight 93 was but it probably would have been either the Capitol building or the White House.
People fleeing from the collapse of one of the Twin Towers in New York City.
The north Tower collapsed at 10:28 AM 29 minutes after the south tower collapsed, even though the north tower had been hit 18 minutes, before the south tower had been hit.
The president arrives at Barksdale Air Force in Shreveport, Louisiana at 1:04 PM. He says in a statement, that the United States will hunt down and punish those responsible for the attacks.
President Bush lands at Offutt Air Force Base in Omaha, Nebraska at 2:50 PM and departs at 4:36 PM.
At 5:30 PM a third building the 7 World Trade Center would collapse. It was a 47 story structure.
The president lands at the White House at 6:54 PM.
The aftermath of 9/11
United States citizens were in a state of shock after the events of September 9, 2011. Churches noticed a surge in attendance immediately. Senior Pastor Ed Young of Fellowship Church in Dallas, Texas has this to say about the increased attendance:
“After 9/11 we had 20-some odd thousand people show up,” said Senior Pastor Ed Young. “The largest crowd in the history of Fellowship Church and when I walked on stage I looked around and said, ‘Where have you guys been? It takes something like this for you to show up to church?’”
But the pews were soon a bit roomier.
“I was disappointed somewhat that more didn’t stick because we dropped to 16 or 17 thousand the next weekend and then the weekend after that to about 14,500,” he said.
Young goes on further to say:
Young attributes the initial attendance spike to human nature. “I think when we are riddled with fear, when things fall apart around us especially when we are struck at the heart of who we are, people suddenly respond and they’re turning to God and asking those deep questions in an even deeper way,” he said.
“When things are going bad we want to turn to God and want to get right with him and we want to attend to church,” Young said. “When things level out we tend to forget the most important things and drift away.”
Survivors covered with dust walk away from the scene of 9/11 destruction.
Many Heroes on 9/11
There are no words to express thanks to the New York Fire Department and Police Department sufficiently for those that gave their lives that day trying to save others.
While others were rushing to safety down the stairs of the Twin Tower buildings, they were rushing up the stairs facing almost certain death. They may not have known it at the time, since the buildings were not expected to collapse.
Still they climbed up stairwell after stairwell to do what they could to save lives. Many personnel in the FDNY and NYPD died on 9/11 putting others ahead of their own personal safety, while jeopardizing their own lives.
Then after the buildings fell, the fire personnel began the slow agonizing process, of trying to find survivors, under the rubble of the World Trade Center.
Flight 93 Heroes
The passengers on Flight 93 who fought with the hijackers will always be regarded as heroes, since they may have died, but succeeded in preventing the plane from hitting the Capitol or White House, which were likely the next target of the hijackers.
They already knew what had happened with the other hijacked planes hitting buildings in New York City and Washington, D.C. They gave their lives knowing the odds were against them, but still made a charge at the cockpit to force the hijackers to lose control of the plane and crash.
Casualties of 9/11
2,606 died in World Trade Center connected deaths and 125 more died at the Pentagon crash site. 246 passengers died on the hijacked planes for a total of 2,977 deaths on 9/11. This is not an accurate count since we may never know how many died at the World Trade Center.
The New York Fire Department lost 341 personnel and 2 paramedics. The New York Police Department lost 23 officers on 9/11.
Thoughts on 9/11
When I think of 9/11 I think of those people jumping to a certain death, the families and friends that knew their loved ones were in the building and wondering if they would ever see them again. I think of fire personnel running up the stairs with many pounds of equipment as they saw those fleeing to safety coming down the stairs.
I think of the friends and families talking to their loved ones on the ill-fated flights that would lead to their deaths. The ones in the buildings and planes telling their loved ones that they loved them one last time.
I think of the ones that called in sick or were late to work that day at the World Trade Center and the ones who might have been called in to work on their day off.
I think of how many more lives would have been lost if the planes had hit in the middle of the buildings instead of toward the top, which would have sealed off 40 or 50 floors, preventing any chance to escape.
I think of those fleeing the scene when the buildings begin to collapse, looking back at huge clouds of billowing smoke. I think of the eerie scene after the buildings collapsed turning that part of downtown to into a dusty scene one thinks of in a disaster movie.
I think of those who suddenly turned to God in fear of what might be next, then think of those who returned back to their lives of making God second place in their hearts, once they thought they were safe again.
Osama bin Laden Won’t Be Around For 10th Memorial of 9/11
Thankfully, Osama bin Laden won’t be around to gloat 10 years after 9/11. He is the main reason 9/11 happened so I had no sympathy for him when he met a violent death himself, but even that can’t bring back the fathers, mothers, daughters and sons who were killed on September 11, 2001.
Matthew McDonald of Big Brother 9 has posted two more blogs, with both of them focusing on his addictions. The first one was published July 27,2011 and he describes in detail how a drug addict thinks. Maybe some reader contemplating using drugs, will change their mind after reading his account of what it is like to depend on drugs.
The language is vulgar, but that can be expected from someone in prison. The blog is aptly named How Addiction Took Over My Life.
The first blog is so long that he added a Part Two on August 10, 2011. Since he was selling oxycodone pills, he had plenty around the house and made it easy to get high on them.
49,170 visits have been made to his blog, since it started in May of this year. The two posts in this article are the 10th and 11th posts by Matthew.
If you want to go back to May and read his first blog to these two blogs, just go to the May archives.
These links will take you to the last two posts made by McDonald:
HOW ADDICTION TOOK OVER MY LIFE PART ONE AND PART TWO: