Archive for Everyday Heroes

Veterans Day 2020

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Armistice was declared for the conflict of World War One on November 11, 1918. That day became celebrated as Armistice Day to commemorate WW1 Vets (Bless ‘em All). Since that time, Armistice Day has evolved into Veterans Day to commemorate all American Veterans who have served in times of peace and war. Today is no exception and we resolve to honor those whose service has been given to our country.

Our family has a number of veterans in our lineage, some alive and some passed on. I did some genealogy work recently and discovered a number of ancestors who served. Several ancestors showed service in the Revolutionary War. Some were in the US Civil War (on both sides) and a few in the Spanish American War. My Grand Dad, Leonard, was in the Navy just after that war.

Verna’s Dad, Bill, served in the US Navy (Aviation) assigned to Patrol Squadron 26 as a crew member on the PB4 Privateer Aircraft with missions around the Mediterranean after WW2.

My Dad, Jack, was aboard the USS Brooklyn during WW2, sometimes in the African theater of operations and also in the Northern Mediterranean supporting Allied forces in Europe.

What is now the senior generation of veterans in our family consists of me. I was in Naval Aviation and served in the capacity of Radio Operator Crewman and Avionics Line Troubleshooter at the Naval Missile Center, Point Mugu, CA. Our mission was to provide airborne targets for the Pacific Missile Range. Those were some fun and interesting times not to mention somewhat risky working around whirling propellers and jet engine intakes and flying aboard some pretty vintage military aircraft. Think Lockheed P2V, Sikorsky SH34, Grumman S2F and various other Convair, Martin, Douglas and Lockheed Airplanes in support of RangeOps.

My two late brothers were also in the Navy; my older brother became an officer under a program where he got a college education at Purdue University in exchange for a career assignment as an Officer. My younger brother, like me, was in for a limited time and served as an Aviation Equipment Technician at NAS Miramar, near San Diego.

Both of my older brother’s kids were in the US Air Force; the older daughter became a linguistic translator for covert operations during the cold war, and his younger son worked as an air traffic controller who, incidentally, went on to make a career as ATC working for the FAA (and still does).

We’re proud of all our family, past and present, who served. We are equally proud of all service men and women that have served, are serving and will serve in the future. May God bless them now and forever, Amen.

For Veterans Day, Verna and I are going to celebrate here at home with a special dinner planned. We hope you have a happy and safe Veteran’s Day as well.

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Dog Walk

Or, perhaps the other way around?

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Photo by Verna.

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Helping the Yarnell Fire Victims

Collection Center

Verna and I took some canned goods, some packaged food, a few blankets and bottled water to the Wickenburg Community Center today. The center is being used to stockpile and distribute food and supplies to the victims of the Yarnell fire disaster. We were glad that we had a stock of items on hand to be able to take them there today. Click on the image to enlarge.

Of course, there were plenty of other community members who brought a lot of items. Click here to see more.

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Two Special Veterans

Note: We posted this item two years ago today. Verna and I remember our Dads, love them and miss them on this Veterans Day 2012.

dads.jpgThis Veterans Day, I would like to remember our two very special veterans. My Dad, Jack and Verna’s Dad, Bill. Both of them are gone now, but we remember and thank them for their service and for their devotion to their families.

The photos of Jack (left) and Bill were taken in 1944 and 2004, respectively.

Jack was aboard the USS Brooklyn, CL-40, from Casablanca for the east coast 17 November 1942. Between January and July 1943 The Brooklyn made three convoy escort voyages between the east coast and Casablanca and then steamed to the Mediterranean where she carried out screening and fire support duties during the invasion of Sicily.

On 15 August 1944 the USS Brooklyn furnished part of the heavy naval gunfire which preceded the landing of Allied troops on the coast of southern France. She remained on duty in the Mediterranean until 21 November 1944 when she departed Sicily for New York, arriving 30 November.

Bill, served in U.S. Naval Aviation. He was stationed at Gibraltar in 1948 where Navy Patrol Squadron 26 had a detachment in those days.

The Cold War was fully in progress, and Bill’s Squadron was right in the thick of it all. Bill was a flight crew member and flew missions on the Navy version of the old B24 - the PB4Y-2 ‘Privateer.’ He flew missions all over the Mediterranean, Europe, the North Atlantic Ocean and back to the US for logistics and repairs.

We’re proud of all of our veterans and salute them on this day. And we’re especially proud of our Dads.

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Two Special Veterans

dads.jpgThis Veterans Day, I would like to remember our two very special veterans. My Dad, Jack and Verna’s Dad, Bill. Both of them are gone now, but we remember and thank them for their service and for their devotion to their families.

The photos of Jack (left) and Bill were taken in 1944 and 2004, respectively.

Jack was aboard the USS Brooklyn, CL-40, from Casablanca for the east coast 17 November 1942. Between January and July 1943 The Brooklyn made three convoy escort voyages between the east coast and Casablanca and then steamed to the Mediterranean where she carried out screening and fire support duties during the invasion of Sicily.

On 15 August 1944 the USS Brooklyn furnished part of the heavy naval gunfire which preceded the landing of Allied troops on the coast of southern France. She remained on duty in the Mediterranean until 21 November 1944 when she departed Sicily for New York, arriving 30 November.

Bill, served in U.S. Naval Aviation. He was stationed at Gibraltar in 1948 where Navy Patrol Squadron 26 had a detachment in those days.

The Cold War was fully in progress, and Bill’s Squadron was right in the thick of it all. Bill was a flight crew member and flew missions on the Navy version of the old B24 - the PB4Y-2 ‘Privateer.’ He flew missions all over the Mediterranean, Europe, the North Atlantic Ocean and back to the US for logistics and repairs.

We’re proud of all of our veterans and salute them on this day. And we’re especially proud of our Dads.

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Happy Fourth of July

The neighbors two doors down got a permit to close part of the street to hold a block party. While that was in progress, this beautiful Torrance Fire Department Unit showed up in front of our house. I took two images from the front balcony and stitched this image together. Click to enlarge.

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Big Red

Last weekend at the Fire Expo, I got this wide-angle shot of an extra-large road grader that the County Fire Department uses for a variety of chores. They use it for everything from making roads to get to a fire, to actually pushing fully involved vegetation and structures out of the advancing fire path. This is a very cool machine for being red hot. You can see Verna admiring this beast at the right. Click for bigger image.

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