Monday, May 21, 2012

Memorial Day comes

A while back I posted this:


about the Navy's new patrol aircraft. One of the links was of a


 P5M-1 taking off whi h lead me to this

The last night of November, 65 years ago Monday, was wet with rain and fog. A big Navy reconnaissance plane bound from Alameda to Hawaii developed engine trouble over the Golden Gate. The pilot made a sweeping right turn, fighting to keep the plane in the air.

He failed. The plane crashed into the south face of Mount Tamalpais, above Mill Valley. Everyone aboard - eight young Navy fliers - was killed. It was Nov. 30, 1944.


Sixty-five years later, almost to the day, Cerkel stood in the ruins of what is left - pieces of the aluminum fuselage, part of some kind of electrical device, even a corner of what was a bunk bed, rusted and lying under a small manzanita.

From the site, the hills of Marin roll down toward San Francisco Bay. The city itself on this day was invisible under a light mist. In the distance, the San Mateo County coast could be seen, curving away to the south. It was hard to see a single house and there was not a sound.

"You know," Cerkel said, "the plane crashed with such impact there may still be remains here. This is likely a grave site."

On an earlier visit last weekend, Cerkel put up a small marker with pictures of the dead crewmen. Underneath that he'd copied a sentence from the unit record of Navy Patrol Bombing Squadron 208:

"The squadron has no heroes, just individuals and crews who did their duty to the limit of their ability."


I guess that almost all, if not all, of the friends and relatives of the crewmen are dead. I would also guess that few, if anyone, remembers them or thinks of them.

Wouldn't hurt us to remember them in our prayers, would it?

"Unlimited tolerance must lead to the disappearance of tolerance. If we extend unlimited tolerance even to those who are intolerant, if we are not prepared to defend a tolerant society against the onslaught of the intolerant, then the tolerant will be destroyed, and tolerance with them." - Karl Popper

“It’s the presumption that Obama knows how all these industries ought to be operating better than people who have spent their lives in those industries, and a general cockiness going back to before he was president, and the fact that he has no experience whatever in managing anything. Only someone who has never had the responsibility for managing anything could believe he could manage just about everything.” - Thomas Sowell in Reason Magazine

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