The Right Thing….Marines, Navy, Army, Airforce, You Never Leave The Brotherhood

Just a short note as an FYI. I am with a Marine Captain and his wife in Palm Coast Florida. It is a little bit of a story, but he has a heart procedure on Monday Morning in Daytona beach, then again, they just evacuated the hospital there. I drove in from Pensacola two days ago to help them out. We had been visiting a Marine Colonel Fighter pilot and his wife in Piney Flats, Tennessee. read more

My first time at sea!

I sailed to Hawaii from San Francisco, in 1959, aboard the “Mitchell,'” which, I was told, had been a “Liberty Ship” during War Two. To say the ship was overloaded is a gross understatement. There were several thousand troops, all services, jammed aboard. As we departed Treasure Island, approaching the Golden Gate Bridge, there were a lot of troops alongside, port and starboard, and I guessed the views from those points must be spectacular. As i headed toward starboard, a Chief told me, “Don’t go over there, Marine, all those people alongside are puking!” OMG, the sea was calm, the weather clear, and those people, Army and Air Force I was told, were already sick! We were packed so tightly that sack time was in shifts. Hammocks were stacked six high, and despite my head being directly under very hot pipes, I took the same Chief’s advice and selected a top berth. I would generally get some sleep after those under me stopped puking. Lines for chow, any meal, were endless. Generally, one entered the chow line an hour or two prior to the meal; once served the meal, all eating was don standing—there were no seats, we were encouraged to eat quickly and get out! Happily, I was stationed at Kaneohe for nearly two years. (And, my outfit, VMF-232, saw Nam LONG before anyone in the States knew Nam existed), read more

Starry, Starry Night [For Vincent Van Gogh]

It all started with an elegant star show.

In the predawn hours on this particular night in the DMZ between North and South Vietnam the stars and the comets put on a show for us and it was mind bogglingly beautiful. Dozens, perhaps even hundreds of shooting stars flamed across the night sky. And the perfect backdrop of the wheel of constellations made the show that much more impressive. read more