On the passing of Captain McCain

I have been watching the “conversations” about John McCain on The Book of Faces since the news of his passing broke in the news media and I must say the some of it upsets me.

First, yes I did vote for him in 2008. No regrets there. Good, that is out of the way.

John McCain served his country admirably and with distinction in the United States Navy. His last tour was in command of Attack Squadron One Seven Four which was one of the largest squadrons in the Navy, responsible for the training of Naval Aviators and Maintenance Personnel heading to A-7 Light Attack Squadrons in the US Atlantic Fleet. That is an awesome responsibility. Nuff said.

There are the rumors of his behaviour while he was a POW during the Vietnam Conflict. As far as I can see those are just that, rumors.

If individuals cannot show some form of decorum regarding his death, they have some serious issues as human beings from the point of view of this Old Retired Petty Officer. At this point, the man’s political views are a moot point. Dignity and respect should be given to his family in the manner of one’s chosen beliefs and values. I have seen comments from a few Christians that are quite frankly reprehensible at best. Some Christian behaviour on their part.  Cancer is a vile thing. It took my Dad and I have had it myself. When Captain McCain made the decision to stop treatment, it was a decision to be taken lightly. My Dad did the same thing.

When the funeral happens in the near future, I truly hope that all of us take the time to bow or cover our heads as whatever religious custom dictates in respect and reflection for a truly good man who gave his best to his country. Remember this one thing, their are those who truly believe that he was a hero. If you chose to believe otherwise, that is your choice. I will not criticize you in an open forum for that. My own upbringing and sense of values will not let me attack you.

The best I can do today. The afflictions of the years and mileage are having an impact on the thought process today.

Just remember this one thing. Only G-d can truly judge us.

ORPO sends.

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A post from The Good Captain

Lex’s Love Of The Navy Explained
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Things you’ve never seen…
By lex, on January 21st, 2006

Unless you’ve been to sea:

You’ve never heard the prolonged blast, and the 1MC call of “Underway. Shift colors,” and knew that it meant you wouldn’t be seeing those you love again for at least six months, if ever.
You’ve never stood on the very point of the bow of a destroyer in the Caribbean, where the sea is clearer than it has any right to be, with the rays of the aching sun slashing down through the water like spears from heaven and seen the sonar dome there thirty feet below the waterline as the cut line brusquely shoulders the waves aside.
You’ve never seen the flying fish playing in the bow wave, nor seen them leaping from the water as though electrified when the active sonar sings its questing, lilting song, asking of the submarine, “Are you there? Where are you?”

You’ve never opened your mouth the better to stop your ears while a Tomcat sat in tension on a waist cat in full blower, screaming to be released, and felt more than heard the sound of it vibrating your ribs, shaking your very organs and knowing that of all the things a man might be made for, this could certainly not be one of them.

You’ve never sat on a bollard right aft, on the helo deck, as a distant sun went down across an infinite sea, and just for a fleeting moment, grasped your part in the bigger picture.

You’ve never stood on the flight deck in a steaming sun and saluted a ship that went to the bottom sixty years ago, and saluted those she took down with her.

You’ve never seen how blue the ocean can be south of the line, on the way to Australia, and never felt the need to just get there.

You’ve never trembled with anticipation as the carrier neared the pier, the deployment done, and tried to find your own family, and hoped that it would be OK. You’ve never felt the shiver that came with that final blast on the ship’s whistle, “Moored. Shift colors.”

And I feel a bit sorry for you, for never having felt these things.

The Sea Effect 1

only 5 percent of Americans have ever seen the sun set from a warship

Showtime 100: This Day in 1972

I was a Senior in High School being two weeks shy of graduation when this happened. It was on the “local news” out of Great Falls, if I remember correctly. Maybe it was on Huntley-Brinkley………….Suffice to say that I remember it, vaguely. I was still 17. The registration for the “Lottery” was 4 months away.

showtime 100

Yeah, I know how Cunningham turned out. He sold his soul based on his status. It shouldn’t overshadow what happened, though. I leave that to the reader to make his or her final decision.

The following is from AcePilots.com.

http://acepilots.com/vietnam/cunningham.html

Flygirlpainter got it finished

Simply the best looking helo paint scheme I have ever seen…………

I thought the HSM-35 Magicians one was killer and I saw it at the Miramar Show.

This one is the best.

Scorpion 100 Bureau Number
Bureau Number
Scorpion 100 Dog House
The Dog House
Scorpion 100 nose
The Nose
Scorpion 100 tail 1
Left side of the pylon
Scorpion 100 tail 2
Left side
Scorpion 100 tail 3
Right side
Scorpion 100 tail 4
Tail Surface
Scorpion 100 tail 5
Tail surface close up
Shayne Scott Jim
Signed by the artists
Shayne with HSM-49 CO Bobby Brown
Shayne Meder and HSM-49 CO, Commander Bobby Brown

The Navy Helo Community seems to like Shayne’s work!

 

Flygirlpainter does her thing on a brand new 60 Romeo for HSM-49, The Scorpions

Shayne Meder

Master Sergeant

United States Air Force

Retired

Damn this gal does some seriously awesome work!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

She is doing the HSM-49 MH-60R CAG Bird as she has done all of the Helo Squadron CAG Birds based at NAS North Island.

I asked her if I could blog the progress of this project and she said to take them from Flygirlpainter at Facebook and to go for it. I have done two at http://oldretiredpettyofficer.blogspot.com/ already. Then I realized that not everyone reads that blog, so I am saturation bombing on a less regular cycle here at ATJT………………….

Please enjoy, my friends!

another clue
Masking Off for all those colors
bad assery in progress
Lay out work
hammer time
Detail Stuff
here's looking at you
Business End
hsm 49 patch
Official Squadron Patch
masked all day
Masking the Pylon
peeps
She brought the Peeps!
scorpion red
Scorpion Red!
Stinger 100
Stinger 100, Factory Fresh!
teaser
The Tease
the nose
The Nose
the red is on 4 April 2015
The Red Is On

 

From theBrigade: USS Ronald Reagan visiting Pearl Harbor Memorial (25 HQ Photos)

As most of my followers know, I was fortunate to be able to spend a day on this Fine Ship last April 9(2014) with Christopher Goodrich and his Daughter, the WSO. It was, except for the marriage of my children and the birth of my grandchildren, The Best Day since I retired from the US Navy in September of 1993.

This is a somewhat solemn post as when we enter or leave Naval Station Pearl Harbor, Honors must be rendered with the Traditional Manning The Rail…………in Dress Uniform…………………….Attention To Port! Hand Salute………………………..Too!

In the old days we would exit on the opposite side of Ford Island and do the very same for The Utah.

Pride

Tradition

Service

A few samples follow………………………………

Ronald-aricraft-pearl-920-2

a-Ronald-aricraft-pearl-920-0
The USS Missouri and The USS Arizona Memorial. The two ships that represent the beginning and the ending of World War 2.

It has been a long time since I have been to Naval Station Pearl Harbor……………………………Perhaps I should take Missus ORPO as we are approaching the sunset years……………

The full series of pictures are at the link below to theBrigade……………….

http://thebrigade.com/2015/04/02/uss-ronald-reagan-visiting-pearl-harbor-memorial-25-hq-photos/

 

French Navy Etendards and a Rafale refueling from a Super Hornet

In recent joint operations of the Charles de Gaulle and Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Groups, someone got some really cool pics!

Operation Inherent Resolve

The French and American nuclear-powered aircraft carriers are currently deployed along with their battle groups to support strike operations in Iraq and Syria.

http://theaviationist.com/2015/03/10/super-hornet-refuels-rafale/

Pearl Harbor Day

The Day That Will Live In Infamy

The photos are from the Navy History Site.

I had things to do today and this is what I came up with. Humble. That’s all.

Pearlharborcolork13513
Arizona at the moment of the bomb striking. This is the definitive photo of the entire attack. May the Memory of all who rest in her be a Blessing.

1024px-USS_California_sinking-Pearl_Harbor

1024px-USS_SHAW_exploding_Pearl_Harbor_Nara_80-G-16871_2

g19938 g19948 g32448

g32792 g40056

g387565 g387598

g464088

h50472

h50766

h50929

h50930

h50931

h50932

h50933

h57670

h83063

h83064

h83109

h97376

h97382

h97396

Pearlmap1
A diagram of the two waves in the attack.

Pictures of the Missouri moored next to the Arizona. I have been lucky to have visited the Missouri when it was at the Storage and Maintenance Facility at The Puget Sound Naval Shipyard in Bremerton in late 1979.

Arizona and Missouri

Missouri-Arizona-Memorial

A link to an article at The Daily Signal about the memorials following the attack is below. One of my Maternal Grandmother’s second cousins ran a boarding house outside the gate of Naval Station Pearl Harbor. I was told as a child that the house took some shrapnel and stray rounds as a result of strafing. I have never been able to confirm that. A guy I served with in VT-26 at NAS Chase Field in 1977-1978 told me that his father was onboard West Virginia. The Pearl Harbor attack links a lot of us in the Sea Service, it seems.

http://dailysignal.com/2014/12/07/21-photos-pearl-harbor-day-will-live-infamy/

A History Lesson, Plane Pr0n and Ship Pr0n all in one.

I came across this on YouTube. HMS Ark Royal R09 in 1975 conducting flight operations in the Mediterranean Sea. I am not sure what time of year it was but in the late Autumn of 1975, when I was aboard USS Independence CV62, we conducted a cross deck with Ark Royal. In 1976, we did it again.

This ship is gone now………………as are the Phantoms of 892 Squadron, the Buccaneers of 809 Squadron, the Gannetts and the Sea Kings and the Turbine H-34……………………………..

The RN Phantoms were amazing with those Rolls Royce Speys and the unique afterburners and the very long nose strut extend for the short cat stroke on The Ark.

Hands To Flying Stations!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

SLUF……………………is gone………………………..

Sniff……………………Damn Desert Dust anyway…………………………

Seems that a somewhat favorite air frame of yours truly stood down today. The Hellenic Air Force officially retired the last LTV A-7E Corsair II.

I am proud to say that I did serve a tour in The Argonauts of Attack Squadron One Four Seven who in those days past, did fly and fight with the Corsair II. She was a tough little jet and could carry a lot of ordnance and did not need a lot of tanker help to do the job.

SLUF is gone……………but she will never be forgotten……………………..So Long Old Friend. Fair Winds and Following Seas.

last a-7
The last A-7. She served in the 336 MIRA of the Hellenic Air Force. Fly Low. Hit Hard.

fly low hit hard greek a-7 at riat fly low hit hard 2

Wings in 1986
Yours Truly, Front Row Center in The Spring of 1986 while serving in Attack Squadron One Four Seven, Carrier Air Wing Nine. Commander James H. Oliver Commanding(Back Row, Right) This was the day I was awarded my Enlisted Aviation Warfare Specialist Wings.

A-7A_VA-174_CVA-61_1968 A-7As_VA-147_taking_off_from_NAS_Lemoore_1967