Archive for the 'Quotes' Category

Yes, This is True About History

January 14th, 2011 by xformed

History isn’t just something that’s written. It’s a selection process. It chooses moments, and events, and yes, people …that hands us situations we should never be able to overcome. – Brad Meltzer in “The Inner Circle.”

Goes with my thought that novels are written as one person wants it. History is written by many players, with one reporting it.

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<del>Monday</del>Thursday Maritime Matters: Special Edition

October 25th, 2007 by xformed

I wrote about the USS JOHNSTON (DD-557) this past Monday. Today I pause to honor her captain, LCDR Ernest E. Evans, USN.

LCDR Ernest Evans, at Annapolis
Ernest Evans was 3/4 Cherokee Indian. A native of Oklahoma, he was in the company of GM2 Paul Henry Carr, a native of Checotah, OK, on the fateful day of Oct 25th, 1944. They both died that day at sea. LCDR Evans attended the US Naval Academy, graduating in 1931. He was a “Black Shoe,” a Surface Warfare Officer (SWO) in modern day terms:

Ernest Edwin Evans (13 August 1908 – 25 October 1944) was born at Pawnee OK and graduated from Central HS in Muskogee before enlisting in the US Navy on 29 May 1926. He was appointed to the U.S. Naval Academy in 1927, graduating with the class of 1931. He served in USS Colorado, USS Roper, USS Rathburne, USS Pensacola, USS Chaumont, USS Cahokia, and USS Blackhawk. During World War II, he commanded USS Alden (DD 211) and USS Johnston (DD 557).

On the day of commissioning of the USS JOHNSTON (DD-557), Captian Johnston said to his crew:

“This is going to be a fighting ship. I intend to go in harm’s way, and anyone who doesn’t want to go along had better get off right now.”

Words he lived by, words he died by, and the words he will forever be remembered by.

When Captain Johnston sighted the Japanese battle force, bearing down on the escort carriers of Taffy 3, he did, without order and without hesitation, turn his ship towards the enemy battle ships and commenced to engage them, displaying the aggressive spirit that shaped the battle the rest of the morning. From the Wikipedia USS JOHNSTON (DD-557) entry:

Johnston’s gunnery officer later reported “We felt like little David without a slingshot.” In less than a minute Johnston was zigzagging between the six little escort carriers and the Japanese fleet and putting out a smoke screen over a 2,500-yard front to conceal the carriers from the enemy gunners: “Even as we began laying smoke, the Japanese started lobbing shells at us and the Johnston had to zigzag between the splashes…. We were the first destroyer to make smoke, the first to start firing, the first to launch a torpedo attack….”

At 10 NM, the close to the maximum range of the 5″38/caliber guns, JOHNSTON opened fire at the IJN Kumano, a cruiser, and scored hits. Captain Evans then maneuvered to fire his 10 21″ torpedoes at Kumano, before darting behind a smoke screen. Upon coming through the smoke, the Kumano was seen to be badly damaged and on fire as a result of the immediate attack by JOHNSTON.

Three 14″ shells struck the JOHNSTON, damaging the bridge area and reducing her engineering plant to one engine. Wounded, yet undeterred, Captain Evans took her back into the battle, and purposely directed his gunnery officer to fire on a Japanese heavy cruiser that was firing on the USS GAMBIER BAY (CVE-73), in the hopes of distracting the Japanese from further damaging her intended target.

Next, her took on an approaching Japanese destroyer squadron, chasing them off with effective gunfire. They retired to a safe distance out of JOHNSTON’s gun range, and then Japanese cruisers moved in to take on this FLETCHER Class destroyer that had fought so bravely. They finished her off:

The enemy ships closed in for an easy kill, pouring fire into the crippled destroyer. Johnston took a hit which knocked out one forward gun, damaged another, and her bridge was rendered untenable by fires and explosions resulting from a hit in her 40 mm ready ammunition locker. Evans, who had shifted his command to Johnston’s fantail, was yelling orders through an open hatch to men turning her rudder by hand. At one of her batteries a crewman kept calling “More shells! More shells!” Still the destroyer battled to keep the Japanese destroyers and cruisers from reaching the five surviving American carriers: “We were now in a position where all the gallantry and guts in the world couldn’t save us, but we figured that help for the carrier must be on the way, and every minute’s delay might count…. By 9:30 we were going dead in the water; even the Japanese couldn’t miss us. They made a sort of running semicircle around our ship, shooting at us like a bunch of Indians attacking a prairie schooner. Our lone engine and fire room was knocked out; we lost all power, and even the indomitable skipper knew we were finished. At 9:45 he gave the saddest order a captain can give: ‘Abandon Ship.’… At 10:10 Johnston rolled over and began to sink. A Japanese destroyer came up to 1,000 yards and pumped a final shot into her to make sure she went down. A survivor saw the Japanese captain salute her as she went down. That was the end of Johnston.”

Captain Evans did what destroyers are to do: Place his ship between the enemy and the main force units. He pressed the battle, regardless of his injuries, and damage to his ship, to give the carriers time to clear the area, only giving up when he had lost every means of combating the adversaries.

Navy Congressional Medal of Honor
From Eagle Speak:

Medal of Honor citation for CDR Earnest Evans, CO of Johnston reads:

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as commanding officer of the U.S.S. Johnston in action against major units of the enemy Japanese fleet during the battle off Samar on 25 October 1944. The first to lay a smokescreen and to open fire as an enemy task force, vastly superior in number, firepower and armor, rapidly approached. Comdr. Evans gallantly diverted the powerful blasts of hostile guns from the lightly armed and armored carriers under his protection, launching the first torpedo attack when the Johnston came under straddling Japanese shellfire. Undaunted by damage sustained under the terrific volume of fire, he unhesitatingly joined others of his group to provide fire support during subsequent torpedo attacks against the Japanese and, outshooting and outmaneuvering the enemy as he consistently interposed his vessel between the hostile fleet units and our carriers despite the crippling loss of engine power and communications with steering aft, shifted command to the fantail, shouted steering orders through an open hatch to men turning the rudder by hand and battled furiously until the Johnston, burning and shuddering from a mortal blow, lay dead in the water after 3 hours of fierce combat. Seriously wounded early in the engagement, Comdr. Evans, by his indomitable courage and brilliant professional skill, aided materially in turning back the enemy during a critical phase of the action. His valiant fighting spirit throughout this historic battle will venture as an inspiration to all who served with him.


One ship has been named to honor a man so courageous: USS EVANS (DE-1023), a destroyer escort of the Dealey Class.Commissioned Jun 14th, 1957, her tactical call sign was, appropriately, “Turning Point.” EVANS was homeported in San Diego. The history I can find shows she completed deployments to the Western Pacific, seeing service during the Quemoy-Matsu saber rattling between the US, Taiwan and China, and off Vietnam in the mid-60s. EVANS was decommissioned in 1968 from the active fleet in 1968. Placed in the reserve fleet, she was scrapped in 1973.Walk the Line download

Category: Quotes | 3 Comments »

Aviation Quotes Online

October 15th, 2007 by xformed I’ve met a few who thought they were…anyhow…aviation quotes by category…

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Monday Maritime Matters

July 23rd, 2007 by xformed

Almost 39 years ago (7/28/1968) in a land far away, a Navy Corpsman gave his life, so his Marine shipmates could live. IN doing so, he was posthumously awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor:

HM3 William M. Caron, USN

Hospital Corpsman Third Class Wayne M. Caron, United States Navy
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty on 28 July 1968 while serving as Platoon Corpsman with Company K, 3d Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division during combat operations against enemy forces in the Republic of Vietnam. While on a sweep through an open rice field in Quang Nam Province, Petty Officer Caron’s unit started receiving enemy small-arms fire. Upon seeing two Marine casualties fall, he immediately ran forward to render first aid, but found that they were dead. At this time, the platoon was taken under intense small-arms and automatic-weapons fire, sustaining additional casualties. As he moved to the aid of his wounded comrades, Petty Officer Caron was hit in the arm by enemy fire. Although knocked to the ground, he regained his feet and continued to the injured Marines. He rendered medical assistance to the first Marine he reached, who was grievously wounded, and undoubtedly was instrumental in saving the man’s life. Petty Officer Caron then ran toward the second wounded Marine, but was again hit by enemy fire, this time in the leg. Nonetheless, he crawled the remaining distance and provided medical aid for this severely wounded man. Petty Officer Caron started to make his way to yet another injured comrade, when he was again struck by enemy small-arms fire. Courageously and with unbelievable determination, Petty Officer Caron continued his attempt to reach the third Marine until he himself was killed by an enemy rocket round. His inspiring valor, steadfast determination, and selfless dedication in the face of extreme danger, sustain and enhance the finest traditions of the United States Naval Service.

HM3 Caron was outstanding young men who enlisted while America was enganged in a conflict:

Wayne Maurice Caron was born on 2 November 1946 in Middleboro, Massachusetts. He graduated there with multiple honors from Memorial High School in June 1966. On 12 July of that year, he enlisted in the U. S. Navy in Boston, Massachusetts. He advanced to hospital apprentice on 23 September 1966, to hospitalman on 1 April 1967, and to hospital corpsman third class on 16 January 1968.

Hospital Corpsman Third Class Caron underwent recruit training at the Naval Training Center, Great Lakes, Illinois, and was the Honorman of his company. He attended Naval Hospital Corps School, also in Great Lakes, and then received further training at Field Marine Service School, Marine Corps Base, Camp Pendleton, California. In July 1968, HM3 Caron joined 3d Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Reinforced), Fleet Marine Force, and served as a platoon hospital corpsman with the 2d Platoon, Company K in the Republic of Vietnam.


On Oct 1st, 1977, USS CARON (DD-970), was commissioned. CARON was in service 24 years, stationed out of Norfolk, VA. Most of her career was spent attached to DESRON TEN.USS CARON (DD-970) saw action in several major operations during her time at sea. She was at Grenada for Urgent Fury, providing Naval Gunfire Support. Present in the Gulf of Sidra, she sailed across Khadiffi’s “Line of Death” in 1986. In 1991, she fired Tomahawks in support of Operation Desert Storm.USS CARON was sunk off Puerto Rico 12/4/2002.

Category: 2996 Tribute, Blogging, Maritime Matters, Military, Public Service, Quotes, Supporting the Troops | Comments Off on Monday Maritime Matters

D-Day Order – June 6, 1944

June 6th, 2007 by xformed

D-Day Order – June 6, 1944
by Dwight D. Eisenhower

You will bring about the destruction of the German war machine, the elimination of Nazi tyranny over the oppressed peoples of Europe, and security for ourselves in a free world.

Your task will not be an easy one. Your enemy is well trained, well equipped, and battle-hardened. He will fight savagely.

But this is the year 1944. Much has happened since the Nazi triumphs of 1940-41.

The United Nations have inflicted upon the Germans great defeat in open battle man to man. Our air offensive has seriously reduced their strength in the air and their capacity to wage war on the ground.

Our home fronts have given us an overwhelming superiority in weapons and munitions of war and placed at our disposal great reserves of trained fighting men.

The tide has turned.

The free men of the world are marching together to victory. I have full confidence in your courage, devotion to duty, and skill in battle.

We will accept nothing less than full victory.

Good luck, and let us all beseech the blessings of Almighty God upon this great and noble undertaking.

Category: Air Force, Army, History, Jointness, Leadership, Military, Military History, Navy, Quotes, Speeches | 1 Comment »

GOOD NEWS! (Finally!): The Democrats Get More Approval

April 26th, 2007 by xformed

“Islamic State Of Iraq: The Cross Worshippers And Their Henchmen Plans Have Collapsed”.

H/T: JIhad Unspun Blog

In The Name Of Allah The Most Gracious The Most Merciful

All praise be to Allah, The Cherisher and Sustainer of the worlds. Peace and prayer be upon our prophet, Muhammad, his family, and his companions.

Allah Almighty says:

“ They will not fight you (even) together, except in fortified townships, or from behind walls. Strong is their fighting (spirit) amongst themselves: thou wouldst think they were united, but their hearts are divided: that is because they are a people devoid of wisdom.” Qur’an 59-14

It is apparent to every watchful eye that recent events over the past few days have exposed a huge crack in America’s administration. With weak declarations from their leaders about events on the ground in Iraq just two months after the so-called “Baghdad security plan” commenced and a growing dispute about funds spent on the Iraq and Afghan wars, the American command has now said “The current security plan is the last chance for the American army and the Maliki government”.

As usual, this was followed by a swift visit by the new (American) Defense Minister “Gates” who said, “The American support to the Maliki government is not unlimited”, insinuating that the American administration is impatient with the Maliki government that is incapable of handling the strikes of the Mujahideen. This comes on the heels of an important statement by House Majority Leader Harry Reid who previously said, “The Iraqi war is hopeless and the situation in Iraq is same as it was in Vietnam.”

Then came Bush’s stupid statement where he emphasized that his strategic goal in Iraq is more than a military victory but also to prevent the Mujahideen from benefiting from the fruits of the Jihad to ultimately achieve victory.

This is how the cross worshipping occupiers and their henchmen live. Their morale continues to collapse as the result of the increasing strikes of the Mujahideen, carried out by the grace of Allah. From downing their aircraft to penetrating their fortified Green Zone and targeting the heads of apostasy and agents, all this has pushed the American army to repeat what it did in Vietnam. In a similar fashion, they are instigating the policy of isolating cites and regions by building a concrete roadblocks and walls as we see in al-Ghazaliyah, al-Ameriyah and others places in order to create a huge prison for the Sunnis. But none of this disappoints the Mujahideen; they have activated their sniper weapons against Allah’s enemies to fill their hearts with terror and death, by the grace of Allah.

The use of these policies by the occupiers shows their inability and the failure of all their past efforts to defeat the Mujahedeen. Our battle against the enemy is first and foremost the will to fight and the length of the battle does not rest with the cross worshippers. Their past efforts to isolate and besiege cities such as Fallujah, Samarra, Hadithah and al-Qaim continue to be met with resistance, by the grace of Allah.

So be patient O our people in Baghdad for the tribulation equals the strength of our Aqeedah so be cheerful for you have had the honor and blessing of Jihad, which is a gift from Allah to the best of His creation. Who ever denies this blessing Allah has called him an apostate and he is weak in faith for Allah Almighty said:

“O you who believe, if you revert from your religion, (Islam) then Allah will substitute in your place people whom He loves and who love Him. They will be kind with the believers, stern with the disbelievers, and will strive in the cause of Allah without fear of any blame. Such is Allah’s blessing; He bestows it upon whomever He wills. And Allah is All-Sufficient, the All-Knower.” Qur’an 5: 54

And Allah’s love is precious and Allah’s provision is paradise. The signs of victory can be seen and the cross worshipper’s defeat is obvious and progressive, all praise be to Allah.

Allahu Akbar!

“Honor, power and glory belong to Allah, to his messenger, and to the believers, but the hypocrites know not.”

Information Ministry
The Islamic State of Iraq
7 Rabi Al-Akir, 1428
April 24, 2007

My skin crawls every time I see the term “Ministry of Information.” Sorry, maybe it’s my Cold War Warrior bias showing, but the pravda never was published in “Pravda.”

Tracked back @: Yankee Sailor

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Virginia Tech Convocation – The Final Words from the Podium

April 18th, 2007 by xformed

Received via email:

Our last speaker was Nikki Giovanni, a huge poet at our school and she said what the hokie nation needed to hear. Also they have this on our website.

“We are Virginia Tech.

“We are sad today, and we will be sad for quite a while. We are not moving on, we are embracing our mourning.

“We are Virginia Tech.

“We are strong enough to stand tall tearlessly, we are brave enough to bend to cry, and we are sad enough to know that we must laugh again.

“We are Virginia Tech.

“We do not understand this tragedy. We know we did nothing to deserve it, but neither does a child in Africa dying of AIDS, neither do the invisible children walking the night away to avoid being captured by the rogue army, neither does the baby elephant watching his community being devastated for ivory, neither does the Mexican child looking for fresh water, neither does the Appalachian infant killed in the middle of the night in his crib in the home his father built with his own hands being run over by a boulder because the land was destabilized. No one deserves a tragedy.

“We are Virginia Tech.

“The Hokie Nation embraces our own and reaches out with open heart and hands to those who offer their hearts and minds. We are strong, and brave, and innocent, and unafraid. We are better than we think and not quite what we want to be. We are alive to the imaginations and the possibilities. We will continue to invent the future through our blood and tears and through all our sadness.

“We are the Hokies.

“We will prevail.

“We will prevail.

“We will prevail.

“We are Virginia Tech.”

It reminds me of another school that suffered a large loss of their classmates and staff. I reviewed the movie “We Are Marshall” earlier. I can pray the VT family will use the example of Marshall to lead them forward.

Tracked back @: Yankee Sailor

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A Eulogy for Col Don Conroy, USMC

December 28th, 2006 by xformed

Found via chasing links on the Sitemeter hits, I got to SkyGod. Not sure how I got there, but the words spoken about his father by Pat Conroy are priceless and inspiring.

A few days ago, I posted links to an editorial by Pat, where he realized he had made a mistake in avoiding service to his country. While he may have done that, he certainly understands what happens in the service, as you will note in the remembrances of his father.

The Great Santini Book Cover

In case the name isn’t ringing any bells, Col Don Conroy was the real life father of Pat, who the character of “Bull” Meecham in the book (and movie) “The Great Santini” was modeled after. The real “Great Santini” sounds like a real man who was larger than life, and more like a dramatized character we wish would have lived. Maybe, just maybe, one man was in real life, what we have only come to expect in the movies.

Required reading for anyone who has a parent who flies combat aircraft. ‘Nuff said. Get to reading!

Colonel Don Conroy’s Eulogy by his son, Pat Conroy

The children of fighter pilots tell different stories than other kids do. None of our fathers can write a will or sell a life insurance policy or fill out a prescription or administer a flu shot or explain what a poet meant. We tell of fathers who land on aircraft carriers at pitch-black night with the wind howling out of the China Sea.

Our fathers wiped out aircraft batteries in the Philippines and set Japanese soldiers on fire when they made the mistake of trying to overwhelm our troops on the ground.

Your Dads ran the barber shops and worked at the post office and delivered the packages on time and sold the cars, while our Dads were blowing up fuel depots near Seoul, were providing extraordinarily courageous close air support to the beleaguered Marines at the Chosin Reservoir, and who once turned the Naktong River red with blood of a retreating North Korean battalion.

We tell of men who made widows of the wives of our nations’ enemies and who made orphans out of all their children.

You don’t like war or violence? Or napalm? Or rockets? Or cannons or death rained down from the sky?

Then let’s talk about your fathers, not ours. When we talk about the aviators who raised us and the Marines who loved us, we can look you in the eye and say “you would not like to have been America’s enemies when our fathers passed overhead”.

We were raised by the men who made the United States of America the safest country on earth in the bloodiest century in all recorded history.

Our fathers made sacred those strange, singing names of battlefields across the Pacific: Guadalcanal, Iwo Jima, Okinawa, the Chosin Reservoir, Khe Sanh and a thousand more. We grew up attending the funerals of Marines slain in these battles.

Your fathers made communities like Beaufort decent and prosperous and functional; our fathers made the world safe for democracy.

We have gathered here today to celebrate the amazing and storied life of Col. Donald Conroy who modestly called himself by his nomdeguerre, The Great Santini.

Read the rest of this entry »

Category: History, Marines, Military, Quotes, Speeches | 4 Comments »

Kinda Like My “Sighted” Posts on Bumper Stickers….

December 14th, 2006 by xformed

Chasing links….and here’s some interesting philosphy:

The biggest threat to America is not communism, it’s moving America toward a fascist theocracy… — Frank Zappa

I found this as the “tagline” for a posted “NCrefugee” (I thought we weren’t supposed to use that word any more, because it makes people feel bad) at Daily Kos, where he posted, suspecting a grand conspiracy of right wingers using zombie computers to bias the outcome of the weblog awards by deleting cookies, so you can vote over an over… Geez…I guess if you live in a world where it’s all about a conspiracy behind every grain of sand, then all in life can ebe explained thru that sort of filter.

But…to the main point: Frank’s insightful quote.

For a drug overdosed hippy, Frank sure seemed to be “spot on.” I’m sure he wasn’t able to forsee the future, where an Islamofascist government disallows all things non-Muslim, starting with any devisive comments about the religion. I bet he didn’t conceive of the “poligion” that this will bring, if we keep backing away from anything that hurts the feelings of those of that faith…

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