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"SHIFTY" - an incredible American Hero!

SHIFTY DIED JAN 17, 2011..........May God rest his soul.

Shifty!! by Chuck Yeager

One hero paying homage to another!!

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"SHIFTY" - an incredible American Hero!

SHIFTY DIED JAN 17, 2011..........May God rest his soul.

Shifty!! by Chuck Yeager

One hero paying homage to another!!

post-300-0-87457200-1299462851_thumb.jpg

post-300-0-27578500-1299462877_thumb.jpg

"Shifty" By Chuck Yeager

Shifty volunteered for the airborne in WWII and served with Easy

Company of the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, part of the 101st

Airborne Infantry. If you've seen Band of Brothers on HBO or the

History Channel, you know Shifty. His character appears in all 10

episodes, and Shifty himself is interviewed in several of them.

I met Shifty in the Philadelphia airport several years ago. I didn't

know who he was at the time. I just saw an elderly gentleman having

trouble reading his ticket. I offered to help, assured him that he was

at the right gate, and noticed the "Screaming Eagle," the symbol of

the 101st Airborne, on his hat.

Making conversation, I asked him if he d been in the 101st Airborne

or if his son was serving. He said quietly that he had been in the

101st. I thanked him for his service, then asked him when he served,

and how many jumps he made.

Quietly and humbly, he said "Well, I guess I signed up in 1941 or so,

and was in until sometime in 1945 ... " at which point my heart

skipped.

At that point, again, very humbly, he said "I made the 5 training

jumps at Toccoa, and then jumped into Normandy . . . do you know

where Normandy is?" At this point my heart stopped.

I told him "yes, I know exactly where Normandy is, and I know what

D-Day was." At that point he said "I also made a second jump into

Holland , into Arnhem ." I was standing with a genuine war hero ...

and then I realized that it was June, just after the anniversary of

D-Day.

I asked Shifty if he was on his way back from France , and he said

"Yes... And it ' s real sad because, these days, so few of the guys are

left, and those that are, lots of them can't make the trip." My heart

was in my throat and I didn't know what to say.

I helped Shifty get onto the plane and then realized he was back in

Coach while I was in First Class. I sent the flight attendant back to

get him and said that I wanted to switch seats. When Shifty came

forward, I got up out of the seat and told him I wanted him to have

it, that I'd take his in coach.

He said "No, son, you enjoy that seat. Just knowing that there are

still some who remember what we did and who still care is enough to

make an old man very happy." His eyes were filling up as he said it.

And mine are brimming up now as I write this.

Shifty died on Jan. l7 after fighting cancer.

There was no parade.

No big event in Staples Center .

No wall to wall back to back 24x7 news coverage.

No weeping fans on television.

And that's not right!!

Let's give Shifty his own Memorial Service, online, in our own quiet way.

Please forward this email to everyone you know. Especially to the veterans.

Rest in peace, Shifty.

Chuck Yeager, Maj Gen. [ret.]

P.S. I think that it is amazing how the "media" chooses our "heroes" these days...

Michael Jackson & the like!

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Please take a few moments to watch this extraordinary video of one man, > > placing one flag every mile across the US for every one of our > > military who gave their lives serving this

SIX BOYS & 13 HANDS   

0930 here so it's 0530 CST and I haven't found any mention on the Internet of Pearl Harbor Day. Being PC doesn't erase it from my memory. Thanks to all who gave all and those that survived that terr

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This is to honor the brave American soldiers that didn't come home from capitivity...told by one that did...

“You will find that dying is very easy; living, living is the difficult thing."

An inspirational story about an American hero; the story of a very brave and dedicated U.S. Army Flight Surgeon, as told to his peers at the 1st Cavalry reunion at Ft. Hood.....When things are not going well....

The words of Dr Hal Kushner....

"I want you to know that I don't do this often. I was captured 2 Dec.1967, and returned to American control on 16 Mar.1973. For those of you good at arithmetic 1931 days. Thus it has been 32 years since capture and 26 years since my return. I have given a lot of talks, about medicine, about ophthalmology, even about the D Day Invasion as I was privileged to go to Normandy and witness the 50th anniversary of the invasion in Jun.1944. But not about my captivity. I don't ride in parades; I don't open shopping centers; I don't give interviews and talks about it. I have tried very hard NOT to be a professional POW. My philosophy has always been to look forward, not backward, to consider the future rather than the past. That's a helluva thing to say at a reunion, I guess.

In 26 years, I've given only two interviews and two talks. One to my hometown newspaper, one to the Washington Post in 1973, and a talk at Ft. Benning in 1991 and to the Military Flight Surgeons in 1993. I've refused 1,000 invitations to speak about my experiences. But you don't say no to the 1-9th, and you don't say no to your commander. COL Bob Nevins and COL Pete Booth asked me to do this and so I said yes sir and prepared the talk. It will probably be my last one.

I was a 26-year-old young doctor, just finished 9 years of education, college at the University of North Carolina , med school at Medical College of VA, a young wife and 3 year old daughter. I interned at the hospital in which I was born, Tripler Army Med Center in Honolulu , HI . While there, I was removed from my internship and spent most of my time doing orthopedic operations on wounded soldiers and Marines. We were getting hundreds of wounded GIs there, and filled the hospital. After the hospital was filled, we created tents on the grounds and continued receiving air evacuation patients.

So I knew what was happening in Vietnam . I decided that I wanted to be a flight surgeon. I had a private pilot's license and was interested in aviation. So after my internship at Tripler, I went to Ft. Rucker and to Pensacola and through the Army and Navy's aviation medicine program and then deployed to Vietnam

While in basic training and my Escape & Evasion course, they told us that as Doctors, we didn't have to worry about being captured. Doctors and nurses they said were not POWs, they were detained under the Geneva Convention. If they treated us as POWs, we should show our Geneva Convention cards and leave. It was supposed to be a joke and it was pretty funny at the time.

I arrived in Vietnam in Aug.1967 and went to An Khe. I was told that the Division needed two flight surgeons; one to be the div. flight surgeon at An Khe in the rear and the other to be surgeon for the 1-9th a unit actively involved with the enemy. I volunteered for the 1-9th. The man before me, CPT Claire Shenep had been killed and the dispensary was named the Claire Shenep Memorial Dispensary. Like many flight surgeons, I flew on combat missions in helicopters, enough to have earned three air medals and one of my medics, SSG Jim Zeiler used to warn me: "Doc, you better be careful. We'll be renaming that dispensary, the K&S Memorial Dispensary."

I was captured on 2 Dec., 1967 and held for five and a half years until 16 Mar.,1973. I have never regretted the decision that I made that Aug. to be the 1-9th flight surgeon. Such is the honor and esteem that I hold the squadron. I am proud of the time I was the squadron's flight surgeon.

On 30 Nov.1967, I went to Chu Lai with MAJ Steve Porcella, WO-1 Giff Bedworth and SGT McKeckney, the crew chief of our UH-1H. I gave a talk to a troop at Chu Lai on the dangers of night flying. The weather was horrible, rainy and windy, and I asked MAJ Porcella, the A/C commander, if we could spend the night and wait out the weather. He said, "Our mission is not so important but we have to get the A/C back." I'll never forget the devotion to duty of this young officer; it cost him his life.

While flying from Chu Lai to LZ Two Bits, I thought we had flown west of Hwy. 1, which would be off course. I asked Steve if we had drifted west. He called the ATC at Duc Pho and asked them to find him. The operator at Duc Pho said that he had turned on his radar off at 2100. He said, "Do you want me to turn it on and find you?" MAJ Porcella replied "Roj" and that was the last thing he ever said.

The next thing I knew I was recovering from unconsciousness in a burning helicopter which seemed to be upside down. I tried to unbuckle my seat belt and couldn't use my left arm. I finally managed to get unbuckled and immediately dropped and almost broke my neck. My helmet was plugged into the intercom and the wire held me as I dropped out of the seat which was inverted.

The helicopter was burning. Poor MAJ Porcella was crushed against the instrument panel and either unconscious or dead. Bedworth was thrown, still strapped in his seat out of the chopper. His right anklebones were fractured and sticking through the nylon of his boot. SGT Mac was unhurt but thrown clear and unconscious. I tried to free Porcella by cutting his seatbelt and moving him. However, I was unable to. The chopper burned up and I suffered burns on my hands and buttocks and had my pants burned off. While trying to free Porcella, some of the M-60 rounds cooked off and I took a round through the left shoulder and neck. My left wrist and left collarbone were broken in the crash, and I lost or broke 7 upper teeth.

Well, after we assessed the situation-we had no food or water, no flares, no first aid kit or survival gear. We had two 38 pistols and 12 rounds, one seriously wounded WO co-pilot, a moderately wounded doctor, and an unhurt crew chief. We thought we were close to Duc Pho and Hwy 1 and close to friendlies. Bedworth and I decided to send Mac for help at first light. We never saw him again.

Later, 6 years later, COL Nevins told me that SGT Mac had been found about 10 miles from the crash site, shot and submerged in a rice paddy. So on that night of 30 Nov.1967 I splinted Bedworth's leg, with tree branches, made a lean-to from the door of the chopper, and we sat in the rain for three days and nights. We just sat there. We drank rainwater. On the third morning, he died. We could hear choppers hovering over our crash site and I fired most of the rounds from our 38's trying to signal them, but cloud cover was so heavy and the weather so bad, they never found us. I took the compass from the burned out helicopter and tried to go down the mountain towards the east and, I believed, friendlies.

My glasses were broken or lost in the crash and I couldn't see well: the trail was slippery and I fell on rocks in a creek bed and cracked a couple of ribs. I had my left arm splinted to my body with my army belt. My pants were in tatters and burned. I had broken teeth and a wound in my shoulder. I hadn't eaten or drunk anything but rainwater for three days. I looked and felt like hell. One of the cruel ironies of my life, you know how we all play the what if games, what if I hadn't done this or that, well, when I finally reached the bottom of the mountain, I estimated 4 hours after first light, the weather cleared and I saw choppers hovering over the top. I knew I couldn't make it up the mountain, and had to take my chances. But if I had only waited another 4 hours.

I started walking up the trail and saw a man working in a rice paddy. He came over and said Dai-wi, Bac-si- CPT Doctor. He took me to a little hootch, sat me down and gave me a can of sweetened condensed milk and a C-ration can, can opener and spoon. This stuff was like pudding and it billowed out of the can and was the best tasting stuff I ever had. I felt very safe at that point. One minute later, my host led a squad of 14 VC with two women and 12 rifles came upon me. The squad leader said, "Surrenda no kill." He put his hands in the air and I couldn't because my left arm was tied to my body. He shot me with an M2 carbine and wounded me again in the neck.

After I was apprehended, I showed my captors my Geneva Convention card, white with a red cross. He tore it up. He took my dogtags and medallion which had a St. Christopher's (medal) on one side and a Star of David on the other, which my dad had given me before leaving. They tied me with commo wire in a duck wing position, took my boots and marched me mostly at night for about 30 days. The first day they took me to a cave, stripped my fatigue jacket off my back, tied me to a door and a teenage boy beat me with a bamboo rod. I was told his parents were killed by American bombs.

We rested by day, and marched by night. I walked on rice paddy dikes, and couldn't see a thing. They would strike these little homemade lighters and by the sparks they made, see four or five steps. I was always falling off the dikes into the rice paddy water and had to be pulled back up. It was rough. On the way, I saw men, women and kids in tiger cages, and bamboo jails. I was taken to a camp, which must have been a medical facility as my wound was festering and full of maggots and I was sick. A woman heated up a rifle-cleaning rod and gave me a bamboo stick to bite on. She cauterized my wound through and through with the cleaning rod and I almost passed out with pain. She then dressed the wound with mercurochrome and gave me two aspirin. I thought, what else can they do to me. I was to find out.

After walking for about a month through plains, then jungles and mountains, always west, they took me to a camp. I had been expecting a POW camp like a stalag with Hogan's Heroes; barbed wire, search lights, nice guards and red cross packages-and a hospital where I could work as a doctor. They took me to a darkened hut with an oriental prisoner who was not American. I didn't know whether he was Vietnamese, Cambodian, Laotian or Chinese. He spoke no English and was dying of TB. He was emaciated, weak, sick and coughed all day and night. I spent two days there and an English speaking Vietnamese officer came with a portable tape recorder and asked me to make a statement against the war. I told him that I would rather die than speak against my country. His words which were unforgettable and if I ever write a book, will be the title. He said, "You will find that dying is very easy; living, living is the difficult thing."

A few days later, in a driving rain, we started the final trek to camp. I was tied again, without boots, and we ascended higher and higher in the mountains. I was weak and asked to stop often and rest. We ate a little rice which the guards cooked. We actually needed ropes to traverse some of the steep rocks. Finally, we got to POW camp one. There were four American servicemen there, two from the US and two from Puerto Rico . Three were Marines and one in the Army. These guys looked horrible. They wore black PJs, were scrawny with bad skin and teeth and beards and matted hair.

The camp also had about 15 ARVNs who were held separately, across a bamboo fence. The camp was just a row of hootches made of bamboo with elephant grass roofs around a creek, with a hole in the ground for a latrine. This was the first of five camps we lived in the South-all depressingly similar, although sometimes we had a separate building for a kitchen and sometimes we were able to pipe in water thru bamboo pipes from a nearby stream.

I asked one of the Marines, the man captured longest and the leader, if escape was possible. He told me that he and a special forces CPT had tried to escape the year before and the CPT had been beaten to death, while he had been put in stocks for 90 days, having to defecate in his hands and throw it away from him or lie in it. The next day I was called before the camp commander and chastised and yelled at for suggesting escape. My fellow POW then told me never to say anything to him that I didn't want revealed, because the Vietnamese controlled his mind. I threatened to kill him for informing on me. He just smiled and said I would learn.

Our captors promised us that if we made progress and understood the evils of the war they would release us. And the next day, they released the two Puerto Ricans and 14 ARVNs POWs. The people released wore red sashes and gave anti-war speeches.

Just before the release, they brought in another 7 American POWs from the 196th Light Bde who were captured in the TET offensive of '68. I managed to write our names, ranks and serial numbers on a piece of paper and slip it to one of the PRs who was released. They transported the information home and in Mar.1968 our families learned we had been captured alive. We were held in a series of jungle camps from Jan., 1968 to Feb., 1971.

At this time, conditions were so bad and we were doing so poorly, that they decided to move us to North Vietnam . They moved 12 of us. In all, 27 Americans had come through the camp. Five had been released and ten had died. They died of their wounds, disease, malnutrition and starvation. One was shot while trying to escape. All but one died in my arms after a lingering, terrible illness. Five West German nurses in a neutral nursing organization, called the Knights of Malta, similar to our own Red Cross, had been picked up (I always thought by mistake) by the VC in the spring of '69. Three of them died and the other two were taken to North Vietnam in 1969 and held until the end of the war.

The twelve who made it were moved to North Vietnam on foot. The fastest group, of which I was one, made it in 57 days. The slowest group took about 180 days. It was about 900km. We walked thru Laos and Cambodia to the Ho Chi Minh trail and then up the trail across the DMZ until Vinh. At Vinh, we took a train 180 miles to Hanoi in about 18 hours. We traveled with thousands of ARVN POWs who had been captured in Lam Song 719, an ARVN incursion into Laos in 1971. Once in Hanoi, we stayed in an old French prison called The Citadel or as we said, The Plantation until Christmas '72 when the X-mas bombing destroyed Hanoi. Then we were moved to the Hoa Lo or Hanoi Hilton for about three months. The peace was signed in Jan., '73 and I came home on Mar. 16 with the fourth group.

In the North we were in a rough jail. There was a bucket in the windowless, cement room used as a latrine. An electric bulb was on 24 hours. We got a piece of bread and a cup of pumpkin soup each day and three cups of hot water. We slept on pallets of wood and wore PJs and sandals and got three tailor made cigarettes per day. We dry shaved and bathed with a bucket from a well twice per week, got out of the cell to carry our latrine bucket daily.

Towards the end, they let us exercise. There were no letters or packages for us from the south, but I understood some of the pilots who had been there awhile got some things. In the summer, it was 120 in the cell and they gave us little bamboo fans. But there were officers and a rank structure and communicate done through a tap code on the walls. No one died. It was hard duty, but not the grim struggle for survival which characterized daily life in the camps in the south. In the north, I knew I would survive. In the south, we often wanted to die. I knew that when they ordered us north, I would make it.

In the south, each day was a struggle for survival. There were between three and twenty-four POWs at all times. We ate three coffee cups of rice per day. In the rainy season, the ration was cut to two cups. I'm not talking about nice white rice, Uncle Ben's. I'm talking about rice that was red, rotten, and eaten out by bugs and rats, cached for years, shot through with rat feces and weevils. We arose at 4, cooked rice on wood ovens made of mud. We couldn't burn a fire in the daytime or at night unless the flames and smoke were hidden, so we had these ovens constructed of mud which covered the fire and tunnels which carried the smoke away. We did slave labor during the day, gathering wood, carrying rice, building hootches, or going for manioc, a starchy tuberous plant like a potato. The Vietnamese had chickens and canned food. We never got supplements unless we were close to dying then maybe some canned sardines or milk. We died from lack of protein and calories. We swelled up with what is called hungry edema and beriberi. We had terrible skin disease, dysentery, and malaria. Our compound was littered with piles of human excrement because people were just too sick or weak to make it to the latrine.

We slept on one large pallet of bamboo. So the sick vomited and defecated and urinated on the bed and his neighbor. For the first two years, we had no shoes, clothes, mosquito nets or blankets. Later, in late '69, we got sandals, rice sacks for blankets, and a set of clothes. We nursed each other and helped each other, but we also fought and bickered. In a POW situation the best and the worst come out. Any little flaw transforms itself into a glaring lack. The strong can rule the weak. There is no law and no threat of retribution. I can report to you that the majority of the time, the Americans stuck together, helped each other and the strong helped the weak. But there were exceptions and sometimes the stronger took advantage of the weaker ones. There was no organization, no rank structure. The VC forbid the men from calling me Doc, and made me the latrine orderly to break down rank structure. I was officially forbidden from practicing medicine.

But I hoarded medicine, had the men fake malaria attacks and dysentery so we could acquire medicine and keep it until we needed it. Otherwise, it might not come. I tried to advise the men about sanitary conditions, about nutrition and to keep clean, active and eat everything we could; rats, bugs, leaves, etc. We had some old rusty razor blades, and I did minor surgery, lancing boils, removing foreign bodies, etc. with them, but nothing major.

At one time, in the summer of '68, I was offered the chance to work in a VC hospital and receive a higher ration. The NVA Political officer, who made the offer and was there to indoctrinate us, said it had been done in WW II. I didn't believe him and didn't want to do it anyway, so I refused and took my chances. Later, upon return, I learned that American Army doctors in Europe in WW II, had indeed worked in hospitals treating German soldiers. But I'm glad now I did what I did.

We had a 1st Sergeant who had been in Korea and in WW II. He died in the fall of '68 and we were forbidden from calling him "Top". The VC broke him fast. I was not allowed to practice medicine unless a man was 30 minutes away from dying, then they came down with their little bottles of medicine and said "Cure him!" At one point we were all dying of dysentery and I agreed to sign a propaganda statement in return for chloromycetin, a strong antibiotic, to treat our sick. Most of us were seriously ill, although, a few never got sick, maintained their health and their weight. I never figured it out.

When a man died, we buried him in a bamboo coffin and said some words over his grave and marked it with a pile of rocks. I was forced to sign a death certificate in Vietnamese. I did this 13 times. The worst period was the fall of '68. We lost five men between Sept. and Christmas. Shortly before the end of Nov., I thought I was going to lose my mind. All of these fine young strong men were dying. It would have been so easy to live, just nutrition, fluids, and antibiotics. I knew what to do, but had no means to help them. I was depressed and didn't care whether I lived or died myself.

At this time, we were simply starving to death. As an example of how crazy we were, we decided to kill the camp commander's cat. Several of us killed it, and skinned it. We cut off its head and paws and it dressed out to about three pounds.

We were preparing to boil it when one of the guards came down and asked us what was going on. We told him we had killed a weasel by throwing a rock. The guards raised chickens and the chickens were always being attacked by weasels. Well, the guard, who was a Montagnard, an aborigine, found the feet, and knew it was the cat. The situation became very serious. The guards and cadre were mustered..it was about 3 am. The prisoners were lined up and a Marine and I were singled out to be beaten. He was almost beaten to death. I was beaten badly, tied up with commo wire very tightly (I thought my hands would fall off and knew I would never do surgery again) for over a day. I had to bury the cat. And I was disappointed I didn't get to eat it. That's how crazy I was.

Shortly thereafter, the Marine who had been beaten so badly died. He didn't have to. He simply gave up, like so many. Marty Seligman, a professor of psychology at University of Pennsylvania has written a book about these feelings called Learned Helplessness and Death. The Marine simply lay on his bamboo bed, refused to eat, wash or get up and died. So many did this. We tried to force them to eat, and to be active, but nothing worked. It was just too hard. This Marine wavered in and out of coma for about two weeks. It was around Thanksgiving, the end of November. The rains had been monstrous and our compound was a muddy morass littered with piles of feces.

David Harker of Lynchburg, VA and I sat up with him all night. He hadn't spoken coherently for over a week. Suddenly, he opened his eyes and looked right at me. He said, "Mom, dad..I love you very much. Box 10, Dubberly, Louisiana." That was Nov., '68. We all escaped the camp in the south. Five were released as propaganda gestures. Ten Americans and three Germans died and twelve Americans and two Germans made it back. I am the only POW who was captured before the end of '67 to survive that camp.

I came back Mar. 16, 1973 and stayed in the hospital in Valley Forge, PA for a month getting fixed up with several operations and then went on convalescent leave. The first thing I did was go to Dubberly, LA and see the Marine's father. His parents had divorced while he was captured. I went to see five of the families of those that died and called the others on the phone.

It was a terrible experience, but there is some good to come from it. I learned a lot. I learned about the human spirit. I learned about confidence in yourself. I learned about loyalty to your country and its ideals and to your friends and comrades. No task would ever be too hard again. I had renewed respect for what we have and swore to learn my country's history in depth (I have done it) and to try to contribute to my community and set an example for my children and employees.

I stayed on active duty until '77 when I was honorably discharged and entered the reserve from which I retired an as O-6 in '86. I have a busy medical practice down in Florida and been remarkably successful. I am active in my community in a number of ways and despite being drenched with Agent Orange a number of times and having some organs removed, have enjoyed great health. Except for some arthritis and prostate trouble, I'm doing great. So I was lucky..very lucky and I'm so thankful for that. I'm thankful for my life and I have no bitterness. I feel so fortunate to have survived and flourished when so many braver, stronger and better trained men did not."

"We sleep safely in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would harm us." George Orwell

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I forward with deepest respect. This just made perfect sense to forward on. Please keep it going for our real celebrities.

Lindsay Lohan is 24 and her story is all over the news because she's a celebrity drug addict and allegedly, a thief.

Charlie Sheen is 45 and you would have been under a rock all week if you hadn't heard about his antics.

While................

Justin Allen 23,

Brett Linley 29,

Matthew Weikert 29,

Justus Bartett 27,

Dave Santos 21,

Jesse Reed 26,

Matthew Johnson 21,

Zachary Fisher 24,

Brandon King 23,

Christopher Goeke 23, and

Sheldon Tate 27..........

are all Marines that gave their lives this week for you. There is no media for them; not even a mention of their names.

Honor THEM by sending this on!

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Thanks Mike for setting the record straight...how do you get those individual links?

I did a Google search under each man's name, and then read a few articles on each of

the soldiers before picking the links. Honorable men, all, and they deserve better.

Mike

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Member of Original 29 Code Talkers Dies in U.S.

CAMP VERDE, Arizona -- Lloyd Oliver wasn't much of a talker, but it was clear that he was proud to have his native language serve as a key weapon during World War II. As part of an elite group of Marines, he helped develop and implement a code based on the Navajo language that helped win the war.

Years later, his hearing remained impaired because of gun blasts and other explosives during the war. He rarely brought up his time as a Code Talker, but his eyes gleamed when holding a picture of himself in his uniform. He kept a Marine cap and a U.S. flag displayed on his bedroom walls in the home he shared with his wife on the Yavapai Apache Reservation.

Oliver's death Wednesday means that only one of the original 29 Navajo Code Talkers survives -- Chester Nez of Albuquerque, New Mexico. Oliver died at a hospice center in a Phoenix suburb where he had been staying for about three weeks, his nephew, Lawrence, said Friday.

Military records put his age as 87 although Oliver's wife said he was 88 when he died.

"It's very heartbreaking to know that we are losing our Navajo Code Talkers, and especially one of the original 29 whose stories would be tremendously valuable," said Yvonne Murphy, secretary of the Navajo Code Talkers Foundation.

Hundreds of Navajos followed in the original code talkers' footsteps, sending thousands of messages without error on Japanese troop movements, battlefield tactics and other communications critical to the war's ultimate outcome.

The Code Talkers took part in every assault the Marines conducted in the Pacific.

Navajo President Ben Shelly called Oliver a "national treasure" and ordered flags lowered across the reservation in his honor.

Oliver, who preferred not to have a hearing aid, spoke audibly but his words could be difficult to understand.

The Code Talkers were instructed not to discuss their roles and felt compelled to honor those orders even after the code was declassified in 1968. His military records make a single mention of "code talker." He otherwise was listed as "communication duty," or "communication personnel."

Oliver was attending school in New Mexico when he signed up for the Marine Corps in 1942 and was discharged as a corporal three years later. Much of his military record focuses on the financial support he provided for his siblings.

Oliver wrote in a 1943 document that his father died recently and his mother didn't make enough to take care of them. He would send $15 or $20 a month to his mother, Ollie, who worked at the U.S. Army's Navajo Ordnance Depot in Bellemont at the time.

"I am now the chief support," he declared in the document.

Oliver's brother, Willard, also served as a Code Talker and died in October 2009. Lawrence Oliver, who is Willard's son, said the two men never spent much time together because his father lived on the reservation and his uncle worked as a silversmith in the Phoenix area.

He recalled one day in the early 1970s when Willard Oliver looked toward a mountain on to a dirt road in the reservation town of Lukachukai and saw a man driving up.

"I'm looking for Willard Oliver," Lawrence Oliver recalled the man saying. Turns out, the driver -- Lloyd Oliver -- was in the right place.

When he married his second wife, Lucille, in 2006 after they had been together for years, he was able to mutter "I do." But "those were the only two words," she said.

The couple moved to the Phoenix area last year as his health was failing. His family remembered him as a quiet, giving man.

"We will miss his wonderful smile most of all. He loved his family and was very proud to be a Navajo Code Talker," his stepdaughter, Louanna Hall said in a statement.

Oliver's attention to cleanliness was meticulous. He smoothed out wrinkles in a tablecloth, picked up crumbs from the floor, and brushed the dirt off the stucco wall and rose petals off the driveway during a visit with The Associated Press in September 2009.

Oliver communicated with most people through body language or notes, though he could understand what was being said and particularly liked being spoken to in Navajo.

During the visit with the AP, he muttered his recollection of his service as "overseas in the war," and laughed off assertions that he was famous for it.

Oliver's life was peppered with honors and awards after the Code Talkers became well known.

He received the Congressional Gold Medal in 2001 and served as a guest of honor in the nation's largest Veterans Day parade.

Oliver traveled with his grandson and a dozen other Code Talkers to New York in November 2009. He smiled as he looked up at the tall buildings and visited HBO studios and Ellis Island, said Murphy, of the Navajo Code Talkers Association, who went along on the trip.

"He was such a sweet man," said Murphy, the daughter of a Code Talker. "His disposition and character spoke widely of him even though he wasn't verbal."

Oliver's funeral was scheduled for Saturday morning at a church on the Gila River Indian Community reservation south of Phoenix.

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This story---straight out of THE GREATEST Generation---is almost unbelievable, but, is true: Enjoy!

Piggy Back B-17

These were the bold aviators who became old.

God bless them all.

PIGGYBACK HERO

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Piggyback Hero

by Ralph Kenney Bennett

Tomorrow they will lay the remains of Glenn Rojohn to rest in the Peace Lutheran Cemetery in the little town of Greenock, PA , just southeast of Pittsburgh . He was 91, and had been in the air conditioning and plumbing business in nearby McKeesport . If you had seen him on the street he would probably have looked to you like so many other graying, bespectacled old World War II veterans whose names appear so often now on obituary pages.

But like so many of them, though, he seldom talked about it. He could have told you one hell of a story. He won the Air Medal, the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Purple Heart, all in one fell swoop in the skies over Germany on December 31, 1944. Fell swoop indeed.

Capt. Glenn Rojohn of the 8th Air Force's 100th Bomb Group was flying his B-17G Flying Fortress bomber on a raid over Hamburg. His formation had braved heavy flak to drop their bombs, then turned 180 degrees to head out over the North Sea They had finally turned northwest, heading back to England, when they were jumped by German fighters at 22,000 feet. The Messerschmitt Me-109s pressed their attack so closely that Capt. Rojohn could see the faces of the German pilots. He and other pilots fought to remain in formation so they could use each other's guns to defend the group.

Rojohn saw a B-17 ahead of him burst into flames and slide sickeningly toward the earth. He gunned his ship forward to fill in the gap. He felt a huge impact. The big bomber shuddered, felt suddenly very heavy and began losing altitude. Rojohn grasped almost immediately that he had collided with another plane. A B-17 below him, piloted by Lt. William G. McNab, had slammed the top of its fuselage into the bottom of Rojohn's. The top turret gun of McNab's plane was now locked in the belly of Rojohn's plane and the ball turret in the belly of Rojohn's had smashed through the top of McNab's.. The two bombers were almost perfectly aligned -- the tail of the lower plane was slightly to the left of Rojohn's tail section. They were stuck together, as a crewman later recalled, 'like mating dragon flies.'

Three of the engines on the bottom plane were still running, as were all four of Rojohn's. The fourth engine on the lower bomber was on fire and the flames were spreading to the rest of the aircraft. The two were losing altitude quickly. Rojohn tried several times to gun his engines and break free of the other plane. The two were inextricably locked together. Fearing a fire, Rojohn cut his engines and rang the bailout bell. For his crew to have any chance of parachuting, he had to keep the plane under control somehow...

The ball turret, hanging below the belly of the B-17, was considered by many to be a death trap -- the worst station on the bomber. In this case, both ball turrets figured in a swift and terrible drama of life and death. Staff Sgt. Edward L. Woodall, Jr., in the ball turret of the lower bomber had felt the impact of the collision above him and saw shards of metal drop past him. Worse, he realized both electrical and hydraulic power was gone.

Remembering escape drills, he grabbed the handcrank, released the clutch and cranked the turret and its guns until they were straight down, then turned and climbed out the back of the turret up into the fuselage. Once inside the plane's belly Woodall saw a chilling sight, the ball turret of the other bomber protruding through the top of the fuselage. In that turret, hopelessly trapped, was Staff Sgt. Joseph Russo. Several crew members of Rojohn's plane tried frantically to crank Russo's turret around so he could escape, but, jammed into the fuselage of the lower plane, it refused to budge. Perhaps unaware that his voice was going out over the intercom of his plane, Sgt. Russo began reciting his Hail Marys.

Up in the cockpit, Capt. Rojohn and his co-pilot, 2nd Lt. William G. Leek, Jr., had propped their feet against the instrument panel so they could pull back on their controls with all their strength, trying to prevent their plane from going into a spinning dive that would prevent the crew from jumping out. Capt. Rojohn motioned left and the two managed to wheel the huge, collision-born hybrid of a plane back toward the German coast. Leek felt like he was intruding on Sgt. Russo as his prayers crackled over the radio, so he pulled off his flying helmet with its earphones.

Rojohn, immediately grasping that the crew could not exit from the bottom of his plane, ordered his top turret gunner and his radio operator, Tech Sgts. Orville Elkin and Edward G. Neuhaus, to make their way to the back of the fuselage and out the waist door on the left behind the wing. Then he got his navigator, 2nd Lt. Robert Washington, and his bombardier, Sgt. James Shirley, to follow them. As Rojohn and Leek somehow held the plane steady, these four men, as well as waist gunner, Sgt. Roy Little, and tail gunner, Staff Sgt. Francis Chase, were able to bail out.

Now the plane locked below them was aflame. Fire poured over Rojohn's left wing. He could feel the heat from the plane below and hear the sound of 50 cal. machine gun ammunition 'cooking off' in the flames. Capt. Rojohn ordered Lt. Leek to bail out. Leek knew that without him helping keep the controls back, the plane would drop in a flaming spiral and the centrifugal force would prevent Rojohn from bailing. He refused the order.

Meanwhile, German soldiers and civilians on the ground that afternoon looked up in wonder. Some of them thought they were seeing a new Allied secret weapon -- a strange eight-engined double bomber. But anti-aircraft gunners on the North Sea coastal island of Wangerooge had seen the collision. A German battery captain wrote in his logbook at 12:47 p.m.:

'Two fortresses collided in a formation in the NE. The planes flew hooked together and flew 20 miles south. The two planes were unable to fight anymore. The crash could be awaited so I stopped the firing at these two planes.'

Suspended in his parachute in the cold December sky, Bob Washington watched with deadly fascination as the mated bombers, trailing black smoke, fell to earth about three miles away, their downward trip ending in an ugly boiling blossom of fire.

In the cockpit Rojohn and Leek held grimly to the controls trying to ride a falling rock. Leek tersely recalled, 'The ground came up faster and faster. Praying was allowed. We gave it one last effort and slammed into the ground.' The McNab plane on the bottom exploded, vaulting the other B-17 upward and forward. It slammed back to the ground, sliding along until its left wing slammed through a wooden building and the smoldering mess came to a stop. Rojohn and Leek were still seated in their cockpit. The nose of the plane was relatively intact, but everything from the B-17 massive wings back was destroyed. They looked at each other incredulously. Neither was badly injured.

Movies have nothing on reality. Still perhaps in shock, Leek crawled out through a huge hole behind the cockpit, felt for the familiar pack in his uniform pocket pulled out a cigarette. He placed it in his mouth and was about to light it. Then he noticed a young German soldier pointing a rifle at him. The soldier looked scared and annoyed. He grabbed the cigarette out of Leak's mouth and pointed down to the gasoline pouring out over the wing from a ruptured fuel tank.

Two of the six men who parachuted from Rojohn's plane did not survive the jump. But the other four and, amazingly, four men from the other bomber, including ball turret gunner Woodall, survived. All were taken prisoner. Several of them were interrogated at length by the Germans until they were satisfied that what had crashed was not a new American secret weapon .

Rojohn, typically, didn't talk much about his Distinguished Flying Cross... Of Leek, he said, 'in all fairness to my co-pilot, he's the reason I'm alive today.'

Like so many veterans, Rojohn got unsentimentally back to life after the war, marrying and raising a son and daughter. For many years, though, he tried to link back up with Leek, going through government records to try to track him down. It took him 40 years, but in 1986, he found the number of Leeks' mother, in Washington State . Yes, her son Bill was visiting from California. Would Rojohn like to speak with him? Some things are better left unsaid.. One can imagine that first conversation between the two men who had shared that wild ride in the cockpit of a B-17. A year later, the two were re-united at a reunion of the 100th Bomb Group in Long Beach, Calif. Bill Leek died the following year..

Glenn Rojohn was the last survivor of the remarkable piggyback flight. He was like thousands upon thousands of men, soda jerks and lumberjacks, teachers and dentists, students and lawyers and service station attendants and store clerks and farm boys, who in the prime of their lives went to war.

He died last Saturday after a long siege of sickness. But he apparently faced that final battle with the same grim aplomb he displayed on that remarkable day over Germany so long ago.

Let us be thankful for such men.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Only one surviving in the world.....

I HAD HEARD IT WAS AIRWORTHY BUT HAD NOT SEEN PICTURES OF IT FLYING.

SPECIAL PLANE, WHEN YOU REALIZE 3970 WERE BUILT BETWEEN 1943 AND 46

AND NOW ONLY ONE IN FLYABLE CONDITION.

To our friends who may not understand the passion we feel for planes and particularly planes from WW11, this is Fifi. It is the only flying B-29 Strato Fortress in the world.

This is one of the combat airplanes that flew from Iwo Jima, Saipan, Tinian islands to bomb Japan and help win the war. It was usually escorted by P-51 Mustangs to protect her from enemy fighters but many thousands of planes and aircrews were lost fighting for our country.

This happened at a time in history before we had long range missiles and electronics.

These planes were flown by men from our farms and cities who left their families at home and risked their lives in high altitude gun fights. It was up close, brutal and extremely dangerous but they risked it all to protect our country. Many never came home again. We love, respect and honor all of our veterans. But we also have a love affair with the planes. It is a permanent addiction for us so we preserve these wonderful aircraft so you can see and experience the marvelous machines that preserved our freedom.

We have completely rebuilt this aircraft and those powerful prop engines to bring Fifi back to life. It took years to accomplish, many thousands of donated dollars and thousands of hours of work by many unpaid volunteers to make this happen so that everyone can share this important part of our history. This is a unique flying museum.

If you get a chance to see her at an airshow, don't pass up the chance. You are watching history and she is the only one left out of thousands. This is truly a rare aircraft. Enjoy the video.

Col. Tom Leo

Golden Gate Wing

Someone did a nice job of filming Fifi, the only flying B-29 .

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Aloha Don,

I understand that will be an airshow out at Laughlin,NV. on 4-10-2011 sunday BUT I will be out at Gold Basin on a meteorite hunt with Jim,Wendy and Rick. If I had known about this airshow earlier I would have made plans to attend and video the whole thing. sounds like it is going to ge a great event. Hopefully someone on this forum will be attending and taking either pics or a video for youtube.

Aloha,

Stan aka Kaimi

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  • 3 weeks later...

Vietnam-Era Green Beret Finally Returns Home

CHARLOTTE, N.C.-- An Army soldier who went missing on a mission in Laos during the Vietnam War will be buried this weekend in North Carolina.

The remains of Sgt. 1st Class Donald Shue, a Green Beret who had been on a secret special forces mission in Laos, were found on a farmer's property in that country a few months ago. Shue's sister Betty Jones tells The Associated Press that she didn't initially believe Army officials who said her brother had been found.

But she was convinced when they showed her a Zippo lighter, inscribed with his name, that was found in Laos. Shue hadn't been seen since November 1969.

Thousands are expected to pay their respects this weekend in Concord, where Shue was born, and nearby Kannapolis, where he was raised.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2011/04/29/vietnam-era-green-beret-finally-returns-home/#ixzz1KxehQXTR

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Adam Brown a true American Hero....loved by family...friends and team mates...he earned your tears when you watch

this about his life....two parts...

I am so glad there are men Like Adam..... Real American Patriots

http://www.patriotactionnetwork.com/video/video/show?id=2600775%3AVideo%3A3742239&xgs=1&xg_source=msg_share_video

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On The Mainstream Media

"If you think I'm being unfair to liberals, let me remind you that when Obama's predecessor was in

office, not a day went by when the MSM didn't let us know how many American soldiers were dying in Bush's

wars. Garry Trudeau even devoted Sunday editions of Doonesbury to listing the names of the fallen. Anyone

find it odd that now that Obama is in charge, you don't get a daily, weekly or even monthly, update of

numbers and names? Well, just for the record, nearly 1,500 American warriors have died in Afghanistan

over the past 10 years, with two-thirds of the fatalities occurring since it became Obama's war in

2009!" --columnist Burt Prelutsky

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  • 1 month later...

post-300-0-26549500-1308574791_thumb.jpgYORK, England – A British soldier killed by a Taliban bomb in Afghanistan left $161,500 in his will -- so his friends could go on vacation to Las Vegas, The Sun reported Monday.

Royal Marine David Hart, who had taken out a $403,800 life insurance policy before he was deployed to Afghanistan, stipulated in a letter that in the event of his death, his friends and their partners should travel to Sin City for a massive party in his memory.

"In his letter David said he had had a great life and had no regrets about anything. He always said he would do something like this if something bad happened," friend Andy Hare said. "He said, 'Go and have a good time and spend all this money.'"

Now, one year after 23-year-old Hart's death, 32 friends will fly to Nevada to honor his final wishes.

Hart, a combat medic, also set aside money for his family as well as $80,700 for a charity for wounded Marines.

"He was the best brother I could have wished for," Sarah Hart, 27, told the newspaper. "He was caring, funny and had an infamous grin. He would always be there for you. I'm proud to have been his sister and of his career as a commando."

Lt. Col. Paul James characterized Hart as the "perfect Marine -- magnificent and in personality and profession."

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A Poem Worth Reading

He was getting old and paunchy

And his hair was falling fast,

And he sat around the Legion,

Telling stories of the past.

Of a war that he once fought in

And the deeds that he had done,

In his exploits with his buddies;

They were heroes, every one.

And 'tho sometimes to his neighbors

His tales became a joke,

All his buddies listened quietly

For they knew where of he spoke.

But we'll hear his tales no longer,

For ol' Joe has passed away,

And the world's a little poorer

For a Soldier died today.

He won't be mourned by many,

Just his children and his wife.

For he lived an ordinary,

Very quiet sort of life.

He held a job and raised a family,

Going quietly on his way;

And the world won't note his passing,

'Tho a Soldier died today.

When politicians leave this earth,

Their bodies lie in state,

While thousands note their passing,

And proclaim that they were great.

Papers tell of their life stories

From the time that they were young

But the passing of a Soldier

Goes unnoticed, and unsung.

Is the greatest contribution

To the welfare of our land,

Some jerk who breaks his promise

And cons his fellow man?

Or the ordinary fellow

Who in times of war and strife,

Goes off to serve his country

And offers up his life?

The politician's stipend

And the style in which he lives,

Are often disproportionate,

To the service that he gives.

While the ordinary Soldier,

Who offered up his all,

Is paid off with a medal

And perhaps a pension, small.

It is not the politicians

With their compromise and ploys,

Who won for us the freedom

That our country now enjoys.

Should you find yourself in danger,

With your enemies at hand,

Would you really want some cop-out,

With his ever waffling stand?

Or would you want a Soldier-- His home, his country, his kin,

Just a common Soldier,

Who would fight until the end.

He was just a common Soldier,

And his ranks are growing thin,

But his presence should remind us

We may need his likes again.

For when countries are in conflict,

We find the Soldier's part

Is to clean up all the troubles

That the politicians start.

If we cannot do him honor

While he's here to hear the praise,

Then at least let's give him homage

At the ending of his days.

Perhaps just a simple headline

In the paper that might say:

"OUR COUNTRY IS IN MOURNING,

A SOLDIER DIED TODAY."

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Polk County Florida Sheriff

You kill a policeman: it means no arrest...no Miranda rights...no negotiations...nothing but as many

bullets as we can shoot into you...PERIOD.

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POLK COUNTY FLORIDA SHERIFF, GRADY JUDD

An illegal alien, in Polk County, Florida, who got pulled over in a routine traffic stop, ended up "executing" the deputy who stopped him. The deputy was shot eight times, including once behind his right ear at close range. Another deputy was wounded and a police dog killed. A state-wide manhunt ensued.

The murderer was found hiding in a wooded area. As soon as he took a shot at the SWAT team, officers opened fire on him. They hit the guy 68 times.

Naturally, the liberal media went nuts and asked why they had to shoot the poor, undocumented immigrant 68 times.

Sheriff Grady Judd told the Orlando Sentinel: "Because that's all the ammunition we had."

Now, is that just about the all-time greatest answer or what!

The Coroner also reported that the illegal alien died of natural causes. When asked by a reporter how that could be, since there were 68 bullet wounds in his body, he simply replied: (BEST QUOTE of 2009) . . .

"When you are shot 68 times you are naturally going to die."

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Polk County Florida Sheriff

You kill a policeman: it means no arrest...no Miranda rights...no negotiations...nothing but as many

bullets as we can shoot into you...PERIOD.

post-300-0-81147400-1309471677_thumb.jpg

POLK COUNTY FLORIDA SHERIFF, GRADY JUDD

An illegal alien, in Polk County, Florida, who got pulled over in a routine traffic stop, ended up "executing" the deputy who stopped him. The deputy was shot eight times, including once behind his right ear at close range. Another deputy was wounded and a police dog killed. A state-wide manhunt ensued.

The murderer was found hiding in a wooded area. As soon as he took a shot at the SWAT team, officers opened fire on him. They hit the guy 68 times.

Naturally, the liberal media went nuts and asked why they had to shoot the poor, undocumented immigrant 68 times.

Sheriff Grady Judd told the Orlando Sentinel: "Because that's all the ammunition we had."

Now, is that just about the all-time greatest answer or what!

The Coroner also reported that the illegal alien died of natural causes. When asked by a reporter how that could be, since there were 68 bullet wounds in his body, he simply replied: (BEST QUOTE of 2009) . . .

"When you are shot 68 times you are naturally going to die."

:whoope: :whoope: :whoope: :whoope: :whoope:

All of this is true, it's just sad that 2 officers (1 human and 1 K9) lost their lives because of this scumbag!!! :*&$*(: :*&$*(:

Here's how it happened.

http://www.snopes.com/crime/cops/judd.asp

Skip

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  • 1 month later...

Helicopter Crash in Afghanistan Reportedly Kills Members of SEAL Team 6

KABUL, Afghanistan -- A military helicopter was shot down in eastern Afghanistan, killing 31 U.S. special operation troops, most of them from the elite Navy SEALs unit that killed Al Qaeda leader Usama bin Laden, along with seven Afghan commandos. It was the deadliest single incident for American forces in the decade-long war.

One current and one former U.S. official said that the dead included more than 20 Navy SEALs from SEAL Team Six, the unit that carried out the raid in Pakistan in May that killed bin Laden. They were being flown by a crew of the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment. Both officials spoke on condition of anonymity because families are still being notified.

None of those killed in the crash is believed to have been part of the SEALs mission that killed bin Laden, but they were from the same unit as the bin Laden team.

"We don't believe that any of the special operators who were killed were involved in the bin Laden operation," a senior U.S. military official told Fox News.

The Taliban claimed they downed the helicopter with rocket fire while it was taking part in a raid on a house where insurgents were gathered in the province of Wardak late Friday. It said wreckage of the craft was strewn at the scene. A senior U.S. administration official in Washington said the craft was apparently shot down by insurgents. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the crash is still being investigated.

NATO confirmed the overnight crash took place and that there "was enemy activity in the area." But it said it was still investigating the cause and conducting a recovery operation at the site. It did not release details or casualty figures.

"We are in the process of accessing the facts," said U.S. Air Force Capt. Justin Brockhoff, a NATO spokesman.

President Barack Obama mourned the deaths of the American troops, saying in a statement that the crash serves as a reminder of the "extraordinary sacrifices" being made by the U.S. military and its families. He said he also mourned "the Afghans who died alongside our troops."

The death toll would surpass the worst single day loss of life for the U.S.-led coalition in Afghanistan since the war began in 2001 -- the June 28, 2005 downing of a military helicopter in eastern Kunar province. In that incident, 16 Navy SEALs and Army special operations troops were killed when their craft was shot down while on a mission to rescue four SEALs under attack by the Taliban. Three of the SEALs being rescued were also killed and the fourth wounded. It was the highest one-day death toll for the Navy Special Warfare personnel since World War II.

With its steep mountain ranges, providing shelter for militants armed with rocket-propelled grenade launchers, eastern Afghanistan is hazardous terrain for military aircraft. Large, slow-moving air transport carriers like the CH-47 Chinook are particularly vulnerable, often forced to ease their way through sheer valleys where insurgents can achieve more level lines of fire from mountainsides.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai on Saturday gave the first public word of the new crash, saying in a statement that "a NATO helicopter crashed last night in Wardak province" and that 31 American special operations troops were killed. He expressed his condolences to President Barack Obama.

The helicopter was a twin-rotor Chinook, said an official at NATO headquarters in Brussels. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said he was receiving his information from an Afghan officer in Kabul.

The crash took place in the Sayd Abad district of Wardak province, said a provincial government spokesman, Shahidullah Shahid. The volatile region borders the province of Kabul where the Afghan capital is located and is known for its strong Taliban presence.

Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid said in a statement that Taliban fighters downed the helicopter during a "heavy raid" in Sayd Abad. He said NATO attacked a house in Sayd Abad where insurgent fighters were gathering Friday night. During the battle, the fighters shot down the helicopter, killing 31 Americans and seven Afghans, he said, adding that eight insurgents were killed in the fight.

There have been at least 17 coalition and Afghan aircraft crashes in Afghanistan this year.

Most of the crashes were attributed to pilot errors, weather conditions or mechanical failures. However, the coalition has confirmed that at least one CH-47F Chinook helicopter was hit by a rocket propelled grenade on July 25. Two coalition crew members were injured in that attack.

Meanwhile, in the southern Helmand province, an Afghan government official said Saturday that NATO troops attacked a house and inadvertently killed eight members of a family, including women and children.

NATO said that Taliban fighters fired rocket propelled grenades and small arms fire at coalition troops during a patrol Friday in the Nad Ali district.

"Coalition forces responded with small arms fire and as the incident continued, an air strike was employed against the insurgent position," said Brockhoff. He added that NATO sent a delegation to meet with local leaders and investigate the incident.

Nad Ali district police chief Shadi Khan said civilians died in the bombardment but that it was unknown how many insurgents were killed.

Helmand, a Taliban stronghold, is the deadliest province in Afghanistan for international troops.

NATO has come under harsh criticism in the past for accidentally killing civilians during operations against suspected insurgents. However, civilian death tallies by the United Nations show the insurgency is responsible for most war casualties involving noncombatants.

In south Afghanistan, NATO said two coalition service member were killed, one on Friday and another on Saturday. The international alliance did not release further details.

With the casualties from the helicopter crash, the deaths bring to 365 the number of coalition troops killed this year in Afghanistan and 42 this month.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/world/2011/08/06/afghan-president-31-americans-killed-in-helicopter-crash/#ixzz1UHGRilNq

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It is a sad day when any of my SOF brothers have given the ultimate sacrifice......

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The SEALs were officially organized in Jan. 1962....before that they were the UDT and were known as

"frogmen"....very little was known about them as SEALs for some time....in Dec. of 1962 a Warrant

Officer who I knew fairly well offered me the chance to join the UDTs if I would re-up....I turned the

offer down because I had a new wife of one year and couldn't see blowing things up as a good

future job....little did I know that the WO was probably a SEAL.....

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