Public Service Guest Post: Are Veterans at Risk for Mesothelioma?

August 20th, 2012 by xformed

The below post was sent by Doug Karr, a former Navy Second Class Petty Officer, who asked if I would share this information. He can be contacted at doug.karr.usn @ gmail.com for more information

Are Veterans at Risk for Mesothelioma?

Most people know that exposure to asbestos can create various health problems. This compound was used for many different reasons up until the mid-80s, and very few businesses warned their employees about the risks of exposure. However, today it is widely known that asbestos exposure can lead to such serious conditions as mesothelioma, or asbestos cancer.

Persons at High Risk
If people worked within such fields as maintenance, construction or sanitation when asbestos was widely used, they may have been exposed to it. However, recent research has proven that many military veterans have also been exposed to asbestos, especially those who worked on or repaired Navy ships. This leaves all of these persons with a high risk for mesothelioma.

How Were People Exposed to Asbestos?
The main reason asbestos was used years ago was because it helped make various compounds stronger. With that said, it was commonly found in many different construction supplies such as insulation, drywall, fireproofing materials, caulking and joint compounds.

Whenever people handled these materials by way of installations, sanding or removal, asbestos fibers were released into the air. With asbestos dust being so tiny, it was easy for people to inhale it, and it often remained in the air long after people were finished with their work.

Since the dust remained in the air so long, even people who were not involved with the construction work were often exposed to the chemical. People who unknowingly inhaled asbestos included cleanup crews, inspectors, sellers, buyers and even customers. The risks on navy ships were even greater.

The reason that seamen were more at risk was because of the tiny enclosed spaces onboard, which made it even easier for them to inhale asbestos fibers. In open spaces, asbestos has a chance to dissipate over time; however, this was not the case on navy ships. The fibers remained in the air, increasing people’s risks of developing mesothelioma.

Indirect Exposure
People who were in situations where they may have worked with asbestos directly, should certainly get tested for mesothelioma. However, even those who did not work with the chemical, but were in the vicinity at a time where they could have inhaled them, should be tested for asbestos cancer as well. This definitely includes veterans.

Many doctors suggest that even family members of people who were exposed to asbestos may be at risk. This is because asbestos fibers can cling to clothing for a long time, and they could dislodge in a totally different area from where the original contamination occurred.

How Does Mesothelioma Develop?
Years ago, when veterans inhaled these harmful fibers they did not know that the chemical could cause a deadly disease such as cancer. This is sad considering most construction product manufacturers knew that if people inhaled asbestos dust, they could develop cancer.

The mesothelium are mucus membranes that line most every organ in the human body. When people inhale asbestos fibers, the dust agitates the mesothelium, encouraging abnormal cell growth. Malignant mesothelioma is commonly found in the linings of the lungs; however, it has been known to develop in the heart and stomach as well.

What makes this form of cancer so deadly is that it can quickly spread throughout the body. While it begins as tiny tumors within the mesothelium, it tends to spread rapidly to surrounding tissues. It is essential to note that mesothelioma is not lung cancer; however, it can spread and develop into lung cancer.

Mesothelioma Legal Cases
If veterans or their family members have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, they should highly consider hiring a qualified attorney to help them get the compensation they deserve. Even though asbestos was banned years ago, it can take several years for mesothelioma to develop.

Mesothelioma is a deadly form of cancer that can affect people who were exposed to asbestos. Many of these people are veterans, and most of them served in the Navy. Since it can take several years for asbestos cancer to develop, it is best for people to be tested for the disease as soon as possible.

Thanks, Doug!

Category: Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Education, Marines, Military, Military History, Navy, Public Service, Supporting the Troops | Comments Off on Public Service Guest Post: Are Veterans at Risk for Mesothelioma?

2/25/2011 “WRAP Pack” CNA and Birthday Celebration

March 11th, 2011 by xformed

As is the manner of it is to gather every other Saturday AM, last time we met, we celebrated the birthday of two of our members (2 USMC (Ret) Colonels), as well a recognition of the Centennial of Naval Aviation (CNA).

If you have an excellent eye for history, there is some of them in the video…..

The creator of the document that became known to me as the “EDORM” (Engineering Department Regulation and Organizational Manual) is present,

along with the high time and most traps pilot in the Vought F7U Cutlass. A RA-5C NFO, several P2V/P-3 pilots, three “‘Shoes,” two Army types from the Vietnam Era, a A-1 pilot with VA-196, and a Navy Cross recipient are all around the table, as well as the two senior Marines, who both flew in WWII.

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The First Line of Defense: Military Recruiters – Tell one (or more) Thank You

December 16th, 2010 by xformed

This is a multi-purpose post:

First up – a suggestion of how you can provide a very meaningful “Thank You!” in this season (or actually any time at all). While you may live far from a significant military presence, you most likely don’t live far from the local US Military Recruiting Office in your neck of the woods. Staffed with service members, if you have wanted to say “Thank you” to someone in uniform, there’s your sign. Next time you’re driving by, take a few minutes to stop in and shake hand or two.

Why? These men and women are the ones who get us men like SSGT Guinta and SGT J.D. Williams and so many others, who’s names we’ve read and those most all of us will never hear the names of, but know it took them all to defend the Nation. It’s the recruiters are the ones who either go out and find them to talk to, or have to assess them as they walk in to volunteer.

The eye for the ones who fit the specs, and the ones who do not. It’s the recruiters who do it. They do it not in a combat zone, but they do it with tremendous pressure to meet quotas, to make sure they check these men and women out, provide career counseling and work with the community, the parents and a number of others. They can’t “work” as well during what the civilian world calls “working hours,” they have to catch them when they can: After school, on weekends, in the evening, and they still have to keep “office hours,” too. Read: Many hours to perform their assignments. Reports, follow up, get them to physicals, paperwork for security checks, get them on the transport to the first assignment in the service of the Country. Then, they get to spend some “shore duty” (the Navy version) time with their families.

And don’t forget some people make it difficult, and occasionally impossible to meet those who might be willing to hear about the opportunity for them.

In addition to just “doing their job,” more than likely they will be in dress uniforms much of the time, and they (as far as I know) don’t get extra funding to maintain them, with the extra wear and tear and spaghetti sauce stains, etc that have probably resulted in unplanned purchases as a result. No doubt the many more miles put on their own vehicles is a cost they also bear accomplishing the mission.

Secondly: As an officer, I had more interaction with discipline cases along my time in service, and, for the “repeat offenders” we’d usually flip their service record open to the “Page 2” (Enlistment Contract) and look for the date of the signature of the person in question. While not in every case, when the date was the 30th or 31st of the month, we’d manage to vocalize how some lazy recruiter just grabbed whoever off the street “to make quota.” While it was easy to use that as a issue to vent over, more often as not, it certainly wasn’t the case. Not to mention I’ll admit, I never pulled the records for my great sailors and look at the same data point, and neither did I then allow myself to vocalize so sharp sailor in some community somewhere had done an outstanding job finding those men and women who were exemplary serve personnel. Fair’s fair, so I’ll have to make that acknowledgment now, late as it is.

Bottom line: Wars are fought with expensive hardware, cool planes, and massive amounts of ammo, fuel food and parts, but it is the man or women handling or using those things who defend the Nation. The recruiters who find them are the scouts to get them into uniform and they deserve special recognition for faithfully executing the duties of those assignments.

When you thank one, please let them know you know they are the ones who get us the protectors, and you appreciate the effort that takes them.

Now, google up the all the recruiting offices in your area and see if you can brighten a day in those places.

Category: Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Leadership, Marines, Military, Navy, Public Service, Supporting the Troops | 1 Comment »

Monday Maritime Matters: Memorial Day 2010

May 31st, 2010 by xformed

The day was perfect. Relatively cool by Florida standards and clear. Plenty of shade under the old oak tress next to the Bay Pines Cemetery. 3000 chairs were put out, as 2500 last year wasn’t enough. The Boy Scouts in attendance still were busy pulling out more chairs as the ceremony began @ 1000. Veterans and family members and friends/supporters filled the area, with many obviously long time friends, and others just greeting those around them and making new ones.

Representative Bill Young (R-FL) gave the speech, honoring those who had given their all so we could all come to such a celebration by choice, and not as demanded by a government such as that of North Korea. He spoke of the many cemeteries around the planet, where US service personnel remain to this day, buried in the countries where they fought to ensure freedom for us and others.

I took the opportunity to meet some interesting pieces of history. These three Marine vets had seen many things:

I was introduced to Major Lindbloom, USAAF, a B-17 pilot who was shot down over Czechoslovakia and spend 6 months in a POW camp. He stayed with the damaged plane long enough to ensure it cleared a town and crashed into the forest instead. I’m told the town placed a monument to him to commemorate his act of selflessness.

A Marine near me, with miniature jump wings on his ballcap noting “Iwo Jima Survivor” had been with the Raiders in the Soloman Islands, a unit deactivated, then he was placed in the 5th Marine Division, along with his shipmates from the Raider Battalion, for their combat experience. On Day 4, he looked up after a mortar attack to check on his men and one more rounds came in and ended his combat career. He’s become the accidentally appointed historian of the Para-Marines and has plenty of pictures and files he and his wife are scanning and placing on the web.

On Sunday, I walked among the headstones and read many names and dates and annotations. This one (sorry for the cell phone picture quality), caught my attention, so I’ll place it here for the history of it:

Clarence F Swanson

Chales F Swanson headstone, Bay Pines Cemetery
Cox US Navy PVT Marines
WWII 9/29/1909 – 6/29/1997

Then there was the Navy Chaplin who spent time with the Marines and Army, and now is a disabled vet, the man who worked on F8U Crusaders, and the one who was on destroyer tenders in the Pacific.

All with the backdrop of the 29.166 American flags placed on the graves in the well trimmed grass nearby to compliment stories of men who didn’t make it, or have since passed away. It was fitting for the day.

Category: Air Force, Army, History, Marines, Maritime Matters, Military, Military History, Navy, Supporting the Troops | Comments Off on Monday Maritime Matters: Memorial Day 2010

Navy Memorial’s Navy TV Airs 120 Rarely Seen, Archival Navy Films

May 10th, 2010 by xformed

Received via email from the Navy Memorial, announcing the showing of recovered WWII Navy 16mm films on Navy TV!

It’s history not seen in a long time.

For Immediate Release

Navy Memorial’s Navy TV Airs 120 Rarely Seen, Archival Navy Films

Internet Television Network Partners With Periscope Film

To Showcase Vast Film Collection

WASHINGTON, D.C. [May 10, 2010] – With Washington’s GI Film Festival launching this week, the U.S. Navy Memorial is announcing their screening of 120 rarely seen archival Naval films on the U.S. Navy Memorial’s Internet television network Navy TV. Obtained through a partnership with Periscope Film LLC, the films were salvaged by the founders of Periscope Film, who also share a passion for military history.  Within the next twelve months, visitors of Navy TV will be able to view the collection in its entirety at www.navytv.org.

While making a documentary, Periscope Film founders Doug Weiner and Nick Spark obtained several original 16mm films from World War II, which they intended to use as stock footage for their film.  Realizing the historical value of this footage, they began producing VHS and DVD collections of the films. “They proved so popular that we just kept expanding our library, acquiring rare military and aviation footage from World War I to Vietnam,” says Spark.

Discovering excerpts of the films on YouTube, the Navy Memorial contacted Periscope Film to request permission to screen the footage on Navy TV.

“When I saw the vast quantity and extensive variety of the collection, I knew this collection would appeal to our Navy TV audience,” said Rear Admiral Edward K. Walker, Jr., SC, USN (Ret.), President and CEO of the Navy Memorial. “Periscope Film’s willingness to allow us to air the entire collection on our network is a testament to our shared commitment of educating the public about the sacrifices our sea service men and women have made throughout the history of our nation.”

Some examples of the rich collection include:

  • “U.S. Navy Blasts Marshall Islands” – 1942 newsreel that shows the first offensive action of the Pacific Campaign of WWII;
  • “The Fathoms Deep” – 1952 film containing early footage of French naval officer Jacques Cousteau demonstrating his revolutionary underwater breathing apparatus known as SCUBA; and
  • “Seapower” – 1968 film featuring Hollywood actor Glenn Ford as star and narrator that shows the fleet at the height of the Cold War.

Viewers can watch any of the films free of charge and on demand at www.navytv.org and can sign up on the website to receive alerts about new films from Periscope Film on Navy TV. The films aired on Navy TV are available for purchase at www.PeriscopeFilm.com.

Internet Television Network Partners With Periscope Film

To Showcase Vast Film Collection

WASHINGTON, D.C. [May 10, 2010] – With Washington’s GI Film Festival launching this week, the U.S. Navy Memorial is announcing their screening of 120 rarely seen archival Naval films on the U.S. Navy Memorial’s Internet television network Navy TV. Obtained through a partnership with Periscope Film LLC, the films were salvaged by the founders of Periscope Film, who also share a passion for military history.  Within the next twelve months, visitors of Navy TV will be able to view the collection in its entirety at www.navytv.org.

While making a documentary, Periscope Film founders Doug Weiner and Nick Spark obtained several original 16mm films from World War II, which they intended to use as stock footage for their film.  Realizing the historical value of this footage, they began producing VHS and DVD collections of the films. “They proved so popular that we just kept expanding our library, acquiring rare military and aviation footage from World War I to Vietnam,” says Spark.

Discovering excerpts of the films on YouTube, the Navy Memorial contacted Periscope Film to request permission to screen the footage on Navy TV.

“When I saw the vast quantity and extensive variety of the collection, I knew this collection would appeal to our Navy TV audience,” said Rear Admiral Edward K. Walker, Jr., SC, USN (Ret.), President and CEO of the Navy Memorial. “Periscope Film’s willingness to allow us to air the entire collection on our network is a testament to our shared commitment of educating the public about the sacrifices our sea service men and women have made throughout the history of our nation.”

Some examples of the rich collection include:

  • “U.S. Navy Blasts Marshall Islands” – 1942 newsreel that shows the first offensive action of the Pacific Campaign of WWII;
  • “The Fathoms Deep” – 1952 film containing early footage of French naval officer Jacques Cousteau demonstrating his revolutionary underwater breathing apparatus known as SCUBA; and
  • “Seapower” – 1968 film featuring Hollywood actor Glenn Ford as star and narrator that shows the fleet at the height of the Cold War.

Viewers can watch any of the films free of charge and on demand at www.navytv.org and can sign up on the website to receive alerts about new films from Periscope Film on Navy TV. The films aired on Navy TV are available for purchase at www.PeriscopeFilm.com.

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“Home” @ Work: USS MILWAUKEE (AOR-2) Out Replenishing

May 1st, 2010 by xformed

As in “Always Out Replenishing” (AOR). This video was taken in Apr 93, but….it was my life for 2 years…just 16 years before that.

In any case, excellent close ups of the actual stations where “Diesel Fuel, Marine” (DFM), NATO Code F-76, was transferred, as well as the antics crews sometimes went to for a fun while alongside.



Category: History, Military, Military History, Navy | 10 Comments »

Iwo Jima Survivors

February 20th, 2010 by xformed

Navy
Image via Wikipedia

He walked slowly through the tables, as I stood to gather my backpack full of stuff and leave.  An older gentleman, wearing a blue ball cap bearing the title of this post’s title.  As I stepped into the room, rather than to the door, my two friends, neither of them vets, looked quizzically at me, but I kept moving, standing a respectful few feet, while he reached for the chair back, indicating he was at the table of his choosing, I stepped up and asked to shake his hand and thank him.  He smiled and allowed me to do so.

Making the basic assumption that he was one of the few and the Proud, but not set on it, I asked what he had done there.  He said “Amphibs.  I took the Marines ashore.”  About this time, another gentleman, also elderly arrived beside us and reached out to shake the first man’s hand and said with a smile on his face, not to large, but more of a knowing one.  He said “5th Marines.”

So there I was, thanking one man for his service at that difficult battle, and I managed to be able to thank two of them.

From the USS BOSTON (CA-69) Blog (click to get there)

We chatted for a few moments.  He had joined the Navy in 1940, was assigned to a destroyer (I missed the name), was a radioman and had been in the Battle of Midway, screening the USS ENTERPRISE (CV-6), and later commissioned USS BOSTON (CA-69).  What ever his assignment was in 1945, he took that Marines ashore as said “I was on Red Beach.”  I handed him my card as I told him a week from today, the old war horses would gather for breakfast and to talk and enjoy each other’s company, and I’d be happy to give him a lift (he doesn’t drive any longer).  He rattled off a list of the campaigns he had been in and they were the many big ones.  He did his time all in the Pacific, all on sea duty, all in the fight.  He mentioned, but only in one sentence, that he spent 20 some years in the Air Force.

I then asked if the lady sitting at the far end of the table was his wife, and he said yes, of 56 years, proudly told me.  He then added a story of how he bought her engagement ring in Pearl Harbor, and then carried it in his shirt pocket, in case the ship sank, until he could mail it home to his mother.  It took two months to get there, and his mom slipped it on his then fiancee’s finger, I believe he said at Christmas, and they were married in 1946.  I went over and thanked her for sharing him with me so patiently and let her, and his daughter know about this coming Saturday.  His daughter, whom he pointed out had been an Air Force Nurse, said, “Dad, I think you’d really enjoy that.”  I made sure she had my card, too.

And, in doing a little homework for links here, I found, via the USS BOSTON Blog mentioned above, that a son of one of the Plank Owners, William Kelly, a Signalman, wrote a book based on their Father’s story:  “A Bird’s Eye View.”

We’ll see….oh, and that night, I met a 21 year Army Vet, a Green Beret, who flared up when I mentioned Khe Shan, commenting how they didn’t believe the Special Forces Camp really had tanks in the wire…..

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Category: "Sea Stories", Air Force, History, Marines, Maritime Matters, Military, Military History, Navy | 2 Comments »

May 30th, 2009 by xformed

So your sons are commissioned in the Marines after 9/11. One of them is killed. You get to answer a question from The President of the United States: “Is there anything I can do for you?” “Yes. Get me an age wavier to join the service.”

The Room full movie
Night on Earth film

Hit and Run psp Starship Troopers 3: Marauder movie Phone Booth dvd

BZ, LCDR William Kristoff, USN, MC,

for stepping up to the plate, when you could have used the “I’m too old” rationale to just go back to believing we don’t live in interesting times.

HT: Gazing at the Flag

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Navy Investigations – On the Web via FOIA

April 27th, 2009 by xformed

This is an incredible list of Navy JAGMAN investigations

download Under the Radar

The Searchers trailer

My First Wedding dvdrip download SuperCroc , free to you…

buy He Who Finds a Wife

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A Date with Destiny – Part VIII

April 24th, 2009 by xformed

21 years ago, the USS BONEFISH (SS-582), while operating to simulate a Soviet diesel submarine, experienced a fire in the battery well.  The fire spread quickly, resulting in the surfacing and abandoning, while at sea, the boat.  The prior post in this series discuss the lead to, and operations on that day, to rescue the crew at sea.

Lt Ray Everts, Jr, USN

In this post, I’d like to ensure the story of LT Ray Everts, USN, is highlighted.  It appears that LT Everts, made a decision that cost him his life, but made sure the conditions he and his shipmates were facing, was not compounded by a collision with one of the two ships using them as a training target.  Last year, a former crew member, FT2(SS) Bill Baker, on the BONEFISH had found the posts by accident, and left this comment, with more details, specifically about LT Everts, and also about other details of the conditions of the equipment, and what it was like to be in that fire.  He ends with some well deserved some BZs for his shipmates, all of this not reported elsewhere:

—————————-

Reason and Emotion video

Update 4/24/09 PM: Some other commenters at Bubblehead’s blog add more detail the post’s comments.

Update 4/25/09:  Hayball’s comments on the US Naval Institute blog shed more light on who Lt Everts was, and a more detailed role he played in this story.

—————————

Bill Baker FT2(SS) said:
April 15th, 2008 at 2:28 pm

Lord of the Flies download

Funny, I was looking for something else and came across this.

Mirror, Mirror 2: Raven Dance psp

I have read Richard’s recollection of it many times. I will give you some of my remembrances:

I was on watch as messenger of the watch at the time of the accident (we didn’t run a full time FTOW -Fire Control Technician of the Watch because it was the old Mk101 system).

Ray download

When the call came out “Fire in Berthing, Fire on Third Street”, I sounded the general alarm. I then got out an EAB for me and one for the officer of the Deck (Lt. Ray Everts). The OOD disregarded the EAB to take the ship to PD. If anyone has ever been on a scope with an EAB on, you know that you can’t really do a good search. I believe he disregarded it because of the Carr and Kennedy being in the area, he wanted to get to PD quickly but more importantly, safely. While the boat was on the way to PD, I heard what can only be described as the sound you hear when you throw an old wet decomposing log on a fire. That crackling sound. At that point, smoke entered the control room. I have never believed in smoke as a living thing, but the smoke looked like a hand closing around Lt. Everts. At that point, things are a bit fuzzy. Things I do remember are my EAB getting filled with warm smoke (which I later found out was the dirt, oil, dust from the MSA filters installed in the system burning off). The entire ship went black and literally, you could not see your hand in front of your face.
The next thing I remember was a couple of hands raking down my arm and someone wheezing “Help, I can’t breathe”. I didn’t know who it was but found the persons head, took my own EAB off and put it on his face. Immediately his hands flew to the facemask and I realized he didn’t want to give it back. I forcibly took it back, took 3 breaths and gave it back to him and told him we were going to buddy breath while I secure another mask. When he had the mask, I got out another one. We buddy breathed till I got the mask setup. During all this, the CO came into control and stated “XO, it’s not worth it. Abandon ship”. I know that the word went out on the 1MC. I later heard that people aft of the engine room door didn’t hear the word.

I lost track of Lt. Everts at this time. I know from other accounts that he went to the bridge (without an EAB), tried to open the bridge hatch, but couldn’t. It was known on-board that the dogs were misaligned, but Lt. Everts came from our sister ship Barbel (SS-580) and was already qualified the ship. Squadron also knew that the hatches were messed up but when the TM1 who transferred to squadron tried to do hatch inspections and they started failing, he was ordered to stop. The inspections were later nowhere to be found. Anyway, I saw Lt. Everts on the deck nearby. I grabbed him, got out another EAB and put it on him. I will never forget the next events. I had Lt. Everts head in my lap and I was sitting cross legged. Lt. Ellsworth had gotten the hatch open and the smoke was starting to clear. Lt. Everts proceeded to go into convulsions from smoke inhalation and looked me directly in the eyes. Just thinking it caused a picture of it in my mind that was as vivid as the day it happened. I heard someone calling for people by station to leave. I distinctly heard helmsman, planesman, etc. What I never heard was messenger. The control room got deathly quiet. I called out “is anyone there” and got no response. I did it again, and then lifted the mask thinking people couldn’t hear me because I had the EAB on. Again, I heard nothing. Lt. Everts breathing became very shallow and he was unresponsive. I looked down at him and thought to myself, I can stay here and die with him, or I can get out. I chose the latter. I stood up, and then did the stupidest thing in my entire life. I took the mask off and then attempted to get it free of my belt. In my panic, I ended up pulling my entire belt off. While attempting to locate the bridge trunk, I found the chart table next to the DRT table had come down blocking the ladder. I climbed over it and got about half way up the trunk when I heard my wife’s voice “they aren’t going to do anything about that boat till it kills someone”. My response was always “I’m not going to leave you a rich widow”. I then made it to the upper level and told someone up there I was the last man alive out of control. Funny thing was, Tony Silvia was behind me coming out of the hatch and he had the connection of an EAB in his hand. Tony was in distress. On the other end was Bob Bordelon. Shawn Glappa dropped down to the nav level and was attempting to push Bob up. I had hold of his “poopy suit” at the collar. None of the three of us was able to pull Bob up. Bob was not a big guy, but our strength was just sapped. I can still hear the sound of his body tumbling down the trunk.
Tony was taken off from the fairwater planes by helo. I ended up on the aft deck just past the sail. When the boat would go down in the wave, it would lift us up and when the boat would come back up, we would scramble back to the center and attempt to hold onto the safety track and each other.
When it was my turn to go, I go up, went to the side of the sail and threw my new sneakers into the water. When the lifeboat got close and the boat was up and going down, I jumped on top of the raft and pulled myself inside. The next 2 hours were some of the worst in my life. I was seasick and the only place I could throw up was to unzip my poopy suit and throw up into it. I was by a hatch but couldn’t lean out. I remember just wanting to close my eyes and sleep. TMC Blackburn grabbed my hand and told me I could close my eyes, but I had to occasionally squeeze his hand to let him know I was still alive. I appreciated that. After a while, a diver came to the hatch and we were taken out one by one to a helicopter. I remember when I was in the water with the guy holding me, telling me what was going to happen, I threw up on him [ed: I suspect this was the wet crewman from the HSL-44 helo, AW Brian Hendrix]. To his credit, he just washed it off and kept going. He later ended up on the Kennedy on a makeshift bed next to me. He had rescued about twice the number of people he was supposed to.
From the helo, I was deposited on the Carr and I remember a gung ho corpsman (he had just finished a tour with the marines) [ed: HMC(SW) Mentzer – a superior HMC!] came up to me. All I wanted was to get horizontal. They took my clothes and gave me a dry poopy suit and I lay down. I got an IV and then transferred me to the Kennedy. When the chopper started to take off, the door was open, I was strapped into a stretcher and the stretcher moved. I grabbed the post holding the seats and held on for dear life.

While aboard the Kennedy, they had a fire. I remember having trouble getting to sleep (couldn’t breathe well and throat was sore). On the CCTV was a Captains mast when the fire alarm went off. No one moved. I questioned what I was to do and they told me to go to bed, the fire department will take care of it.

The next day, we go on a helo and were taken to the hospital. En-route, I was allowed to put on a harness and look out the open door. It was cool.

Once at the hospital, they did triage and it was determined that I had pretty extensive smoke inhalation. I ended up on oxygen and albuteral. I was finally able to get in touch with my wife and family. Maybe another time I will tell you what she went through during all this. Suffice it to say, squadron was very unprepared for something like this to happen.

I was discharged a few days later and went home.

There were some definite heroes that day:
Lt. Everts – For getting the ship safely to PD and the surface.
Tony Silvia – For trying to save Bob Bordelons life.
??? Ledbetter – For jumping in and getting the life rafts to the boat when they were dropped off.
Rescue swimmers – For going above and beyond.
Jim Yates – For telling squadron about the hatches -though they shut him down on this.

A Night at the Roxbury video

TMC ??? – Who tried like hell to get squadron to allow the hatches to be inspected.
Lt. Ellsworth – For getting up there and getting the hatch open.

If you haven’t read that entire comment thread, then you’re missing some other first person info, too.

Jim Chapman loaned me the December 1988 Approach magazine, which his parents had saved all these years, so I could scan two articles, one by the SH-3 Helo pilot, CDR Waickwicz (later ADM), and the other by Jim. Click on the cover picture below to get to the .pdf of those pages from Approach.

Well done, LT Ray Everts.  Rest in peace.

Other shipmates of the BONEFISH crew who were lost 4/24/2009 were:

YN3(SS) Marshall Lindgren, USN and RM1(SS) Robert W. Bordelon, Jr, USN

If anyone has any info regarding this disaster, particularly on the salvage operations, please leave a comment and let me know how to contact you.

Category: Public Service | 7 Comments »

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