The Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions." --American Statesman Daniel Webster (1782-1852)

Friday, December 30, 2016

Mail plane went looking for the Japanese fleet after Pearl Harbor.

Now that the election is over, I will spend more time doing historical stuff and 2nd amendment stuff.  I will still post political articles and muses and pithy thoughts but will spend more time doing historical stuff and things that I like :)  I saw this article and decided do some digging and pull more information together.  I figured this would be a fun article to write since I like history and Pearl Harbor I and many of my friends have talked about that attack and what it meant to the country.  This article would have been cool for a DEC 7th post but I wasn't aware of it until now.

On the 75th anniversary of the Japanese attack Pearl Harbor, there was a plane with a unique story to tell. It is one of the few planes to have flown against the Japanese on that day. With its silver and orange-yellow paint scheme with a bright green tail and red trim, it wasn’t the most likely combat aircraft.
It was designed to be a small airliner for transporting troops, mail, and photographers around Hawaii. It had a boat hull for landing and take-off in the water and big tires for landing and taking off on a runway. The plane was piloted by Ensign Wesley Hoyt Ruth.
“The fact that Ruth got out and got back is . . . absolutely amazing,” says Smithsonian museum specialist Pat Robinson.

Robinson said that the plane would not have survived if it had found the Japanese fleet. It was also fortunate not be shot down by the Americans as they returned to Pearl Harbor.
It’s also amazing that the plane was not sent to the junkyard for scrap. “Somewhere . . . someone looking at the log books realized the significance of the airplane, and where it had been,” and alerted the Smithsonian, which retrieved it from military storage, Robinson said.
“It’s a huge deal, to have this here,” he said. “It represents American involvement in the Second World War. It was there when it started.”
The Smithsonian wants to restore the plane, but there are a lot of planes in line ahead of it. The plane was built for the Navy in 1938.  It was built at the Sikorsky plant in Stratford, Connecticut.  It’s a big plane with two huge propeller engines in the wings, a hatch in the nose for photography, and porthole-type windows.
The museum curators found an old emergency water purification kit and the rusted keys to a lockbox in the radio compartment.

An old drinking water kit was in the Sikorsky JRS-1 flying boat that sits in the restoration hangar of the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. (Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post)
 Lockbox keys also were found on the plane, which had a boat-like hull to allow it land on water and wheels to come in on a runway. (Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post)
The plane was part of a squadron based on Ford Island in the middle of Pearl Harbor.
Ruth was having breakfast in his bachelor’s quarters at the time of the attack.  He thought that it might be a drill until he saw the bombs.
Sikorsky JRS-1 (S-43) in 1945.
Sikorsky JRS-1 (S-43) in 1945.
His son, Thomas A. Ruth II, said that his father was an experienced aviator who could fly anything.
Ruth survived the war, but his brother, Thomas, who was also a Navy pilot was killed when he was shot down in the South Pacific in 1943.
Ruth grabbed his coat and jumped into his convertible and drove as fast as he could toward the airstrip to avoid being hit by enemy fire.  As he reached the runway, the USS Arizona exploded, showering the area with pencil-sized gunpowder pellets.
Once the attack ended, the Americans wanted to find the fleet that had attacked them.  A senior officer told Ruth to take the first plane and go find them.
Ruth piloted the plane, and Emery C. “Pappy” Geise, 35, was his co-pilot.  Oscar W. Benefeil Jr. worked the radio and Amos P. Gallupe was the plane captain. Two other sailors joined them on the flight.

Before takeoff, the senior officer provided three Springfield rifles. Ruth said, “we would have had to shoot through the windows.”
They took off in the brightly colored plane and headed north.
They flew for hours and covered 250 miles but didn’t see anything. The enemy fleet was in the Pacific, north of Hawaii, but the crew made no contact. The next task was to get back home without being shot down by nervous soldiers from their own side.  According to historians, numerous US planes were shot down by anxious US anti-aircraft guns.
Luckily, they landed back at the airstrip safely.
After that, the plane was sent to a base in California and then given to a forerunner of NASA for testing.  It was placed in storage after that and then sent to the Smithsonian when the historical importance of the plane was realized.
Ruth passed away at the age of 101 in Matthews, NC.  He was buried in Arlington National Cemetery in January, The Washington Post reported.
Because of his bravery at Pearl Harbor, Ruth earned the Navy Cross, their second-highest honor.
“Although contact with the enemy meant almost certain destruction,” his citation reads, Ruth’s courage, airmanship, and skill “were at all times inspiring and in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.”

   Here are some details on this airplane, I cribbed the information from "Google" and "Wiki".
The S-43 first flew in 1935, and was a smaller version of the Sikorsky S-42 "Clipper". It accommodated between 18 and 25 passengers, with a separate two-crew forward cockpit.[1] The S-43 was known as the "Baby Clipper" in airline service.
On April 14, 1936, An S-43 with a 500 kilograms (1,100 lb) payload and piloted by Boris Sergievsky set an altitude record for amphibious aircraft when it reached an altitude of 27,950 feet above Stamford, Connecticut. Also aboard was designer Igor Sikorsky.
In total, approximately 53 S-43s were built, including examples of the twin-tailed S-43B.

The S-43 was used primarily by Pan American World Airways for flights to Cuba and within Latin America. Two were also flown by Reeve Aleutian Airways in Alaska and three were used by Inter-Island Airways of Hawaii, the predecessor to modern-day Hawaiian Airlines, to ferry Pan-Am Clipper passengers and local residents from Honolulu to the other islands. One aircraft was purchased by Norwegian airline Det Norske Luftfartselskap.

 Panair do Brasil operated seven aircraft. 5 S-43 were used between 1937 and 1945 by the French company A√©romaritime on a colonial airway between Dakar (Senegal) and Pointe-Noire (Congo).
Five aircraft were acquired by the U.S. Army Air Corps in 1937 under the designation OA-8 and were used for transport of freight and passengers. 17 aircraft were procured by the U.S. Navy between 1937 and 1939 as the JRS-1, two of which served the U.S. Marine Corps. One JRS survived in service at the end of 1941.

The Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum's Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Virginia is currently restoring a Sikorsky JRS-1 that was on duty at Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941.
Two aircraft went to private owners: Harold Vanderbilt and Howard Hughes. Hughes' S-43 N440 remains the last example of this aircraft type flying . It is now owned by Kermit Weeks and has been relocated from Texas to the restoration facility at the Fantasy of Flight Museum in Polk City, Florida where it is awaiting reassembly and restoration.

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Some more P40 information

I ran across this article surfing around, the warm weather has raised hell with my allergies, and I feel like one dripping nose....gross description I know...but there it is.  Well anyway after getting some "kleenex"..
yep, that stuff....Anyway I ran across this article and I decided to piggyback off an earlier article I posted about the P40.

Former P-40 fighter pilot John Bailey is of the opinion the P-40 ‘Kittyhawk’ was preferable to the renowned Spitfire.
It was one of the best fighters in the campaign over the skies of Papua New Guinea, he says. They were built with quality, dependability, and longevity in mind. The Spitfire wasn’t as good in that regard. Rarely could a full squadron of them be put in the air.
And he should know. His experience started at age 21 when in 1943, he flew his first sortie in the campaign. He flew 102 sorties against the Japanese while he was with 75 Squadron of the Royal Australian Air Force.

Recently, Bailey had the opportunity to fly in one again to mark the start of Classic Air Adventures, which will offer exciting flights in vintage planes to the community of Wangaratta in Western Australia.
He joined the RAAF when pilot trainees were being sent to fly bombers in England. However, shortly after receiving his wings, the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbour causing the country to change direction militarily.
Trained first to fly the Buffalo and the Boomerang –

 which were woefully inadequate against Japanese Zero’s fighters – Bailey later trained on the Kittyhawk after being stationed at Mildura.

For six weeks he searched for the wreck of HMAS Sydney, which had been sunk off Australia’s western coast by the German auxiliary cruiser Kormoran, The Standard reported.
There, he met his superior officer, Jack ‘Kongo’ Kinninmont whom Bailey describes as a wonderful man and an impressive leader. His policy was: ranks were immaterial when flying.  All ranks fly, fight, and occasionally, all die together, said Bailey.

Monday, December 26, 2016

Monday Music "Valerie" by Steve Winwood.

I had mentioned a week or so ago that I would do another song by Steve Winwood and the song would be Valerie.  Well the story for me was in 1987 I had gone home for 30 days before my second tour started in Germany and I had tried to connect with a girl I was interested in, but we had feelings for each other but never acted on them.  Oh well so is Life.  But I played this song to remind me of her.  I have few regrets in my life and that isn't one of them and there is a purpose and a destiny of my life. I was destined to not get involved with this other girl because I would eventually meet the girl that I would marry.   it shows that  things happen for a reason.  While doing some research for this song I found out that there was a 1982 version that I wasn't aware of...

"Valerie" is a song written by Steve Winwood and Will Jennings and originally recorded by Winwood for his third solo album, Talking Back to the Night, in 1982.

The song deals with a man reminiscing about a lost love he hopes to find again someday. Will Jennings reportedly wrote the lyrics while thinking about singer Valerie Carter, whose career was declining because of drugs. On its original release, the single reached number 51 on the UK Singles Chart and number 70 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100.
In 1987, a remix by Tom Lord-Alge was included as a single from Winwood's compilation album Chronicles. The remixed version of "Valerie" climbed to number 9 on the Billboard Hot 100 in late December 1987, and also reached number 19 on the UK Singles Chart. Both versions also reached #13 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks chart.
DJ Falcon recalled in an interview that he and Thomas Bangalter, as a duo called Together, had sampled "Valerie" to create a simple loop that they used in DJ sets. Falcon added that the duo had no intention of releasing it as a single, despite demand from various outlets.
Eric Prydz later sampled "Valerie" in 2004 for a house music track and presented it to Winwood, who was so impressed with what Prydz had done, he re-recorded the vocals to better fit the track. It was released as "Call on Me" that same year. "Call on Me" was, in turn, sampled in 2009's "Pass Out" from Chris Brown (featuring Eva Simons) on his Graffiti album, also co-produced by Prydz.
In 2012, "Valerie" was covered by American indie rock band Ra Ra Riot with Delicate Steve.

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Merry Christmas to all...

This will be kinda a short post because it is a Holiday Season. 

   I want to wish all my fellow bloggers and readers  a Merry Christmas.  Remember the reason for the Season and spend it with your family if you can.  I have spent time away from family in the past during deployments or work, but the past few years I have been lucky to spend them at home with my family.   Keep in your prayers those that walk the ramparts on this day so we can celebrate with our family.

    Also my son got a couple of presents from a family get together and he was very happy about the gifts.
  He was excited to get the shirt, he is looking forward to the first day of school to see how many people he can "trigger" at his school.   I do like the shirt however he could lose the hat though.

    And watching 24 hour marathon of "A Christmas Story"

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Something to get into the Christmas Spirit....Full Metal Elf

    I am doing stuff around the house getting ready for the jolly guy to show up so I figured I would post a holiday favorite...

    Full Metal ELF!

Thursday, December 22, 2016

An interesting though and statistic on the election process from 2016

I ran across this on the internet and I liked the information shown especially the number of counties that Trump won versus Clinton.

Trump Won 3084 of 3141 Counties, Clinton Won 57. The number of votes that Clinton beat Trump by - 1.3 million - could all be contained in the five boroughs of New York City, or within the State of California. In other words, without the Electoral College, the entire United States could be ruled by the majority of the citizen within a single state, or in the case of New York, within a single city. The overwhelming victory of Republican candidates in both Houses of Congress and in State legislatures across the country does not represent the end of the Republic, but rather that our Republic - based on democratic principles - WORKS and is in remarkably shape for two centuries.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Flying Tigers, some information and some background.

This post was inspired by Old NFO who had a picture posted on his blog and I liked the picture and decided to do some research on it.  I had done some research back in 2011 about the Flying Tigers airlines and their relationship to the original AVG and its relationship to the "Airport" disaster movies..
    Here is the print that started it....
ONE THE HARD WAY – Dan Zoernig
Christmas Day, 1941. American Volunteer Group Flight Leader Parker Dupouy finds his guns jammed during combat high over the Gulf of Martaban. Determined to bring down his adversary, he rams the Hayabusa Oscar of Lt. Hiroshi Okuyama of the JAAF 64th Sentai. Though he lost four feet of his wingtip and his entire aileron, Dupouy made it back to his base to fight another day. Lt. Okuyama’s aircraft, however, broke up in flight and carried him to his death. Dupouy went on to score 6.5 victories in the air before war’s end.

The Flying Tigers
American Volunteer Group - Chinese Air Force

  In April, 1937, Claire L. Chennault, then a captain in the United States Army Air Corps, retired from active duty and accepted an offer form Madame Chiang Kai-shek for a three month mission to China to make a confidential survey of the Chinese Air Force.  At that time China and Japan were on the verge of war and the fledgling Chinese Air Force was beset by internal problems and torn between American and Italian influence.  Madame Chiang Kai-shek took over leadership of the Aeronautical Commission in order to reorganize the Chinese Air Force.  This was the beginning of Chennault's stay in China which did not terminate until 1945 at the close of World War II.  Chennault's combat and other experiences between 1937 and 1941 in China are another story, but it was these experiences together with the knowledge he attained of combat tactics and the operations of Japanese Air Force over China that laid the ground work for the organization of the American Volunteer Group in 1941.
The official status of Claire L. Chennault in China prior to 1942 was always a subject of speculation.  Chennault himself states that he was a civilian advisor to the Secretary of the Commission for Aeronautical Affairs, first Madame Chiang and later T.V. Soong.  Until he returned to active duty with the United States Army in the spring of 1942, four months after Pearl Harbor, he had no legal status as a belligerent and held no rank other than retired captain in the United States Army.  Even while he commanded the American Volunteer Group in combat, his official job was adviser to the Central Bank of China, and his passport listed his occupation as a farmer.
In the summer of 1938 Chennault went to Kunming, the capital of Yunnan Province in Western China, to forge, at the request of Madame Chiang, a new Chinese Air Force from an American mold.
It was during these years of self-imposed exile in the Chinese hinterland, that Chennault laid the foundation for the unique American air operations that featured the final three years of the Japanese war in China.  In addition to his solid relations with Chinese of both high and low estate, these operations were based on clusters of strategically located air fields and an air-raid warning system that covered Free China.  Without those three solid supports American air power could hardly have functioned in China.
"All over Free China these human ant heaps rose to turn mud, rocks, lime and sweat into 5,000 foot runways to nest planes not yet built in Los Angels and Buffalo factories*"
Describing the Chinese air-raid warning net, Chennault states:
"The Chinese air-raid warning system was a vast spidernet of people, radios, telephones, and telegraph lines that covered all of Free China accessible to enemy aircraft.  In addition to continuous intelligence of enemy attacks, the net served to locate and guide lost friendly planes, direct aid to friendly pilots who had crashed or bailed out, and helped guide our technical intelligence experts to wrecks of crashed enemy aircraft."
"Most efficient sector of the net was developed in Yunnan as a dire necessity.  It was the Yunnan net that was a key to the early A.V.G. successes and the defense of Chinese terminals on this side of the Hump against fantastic numerical odds."*
Early in 1939 the Japanese began their tremendous effort to break the back of Chinese resistance by sustained bombing of every major population center in Free China.  It was the virtually unopposed and continuous bombing of the major centers of Free China by Japanese Air Force that directly led to the organization of the American Volunteer Group.  In the fall of 1940 the Generalissimo instructed Chennault to go to the United States for the purpose of obtaining American planes and American pilots to end the Japanese bombing.
Chennault's original plans called for the injection of a rejuvenated Chinese Air Force spearheaded by American volunteers to upset the Pacific stalemate.
Concerning the proposed American Volunteer Group, Chennault states:
"My plan proposed to throw a small but well-equipped air force into China.  Japan, Like England, floated her life blood on the sea and could be defeated more easily by slashing her salty arties than by stabbing for her heart.  Air bases in Free China could put all of the vital Japanese supply lines and advanced staging areas under attack.
"This strategic concept of China as a platform of air attack on Japan offered little attraction of the military planners of 1941.  It was not until the Trident Conference of 1943 that I found any appreciation of my strategy or any support for the plans to implement it.  This support came from two civilians, President Franklin D. Roosevelt and Prime Minister Winston Churchill, and was offered against the strong advice of their military advisers."*
Unfortunately, the only salvage out of all Chennault's plans and efforts during 1940-41 was the First (and only) American Volunteer Group of fighter pilots and fighter planes.  In discussing the genesis of the American Volunteer Group, Chennault states:
"Methods of implementing the fighter-group plan developed faster than I expected.  It became evident during the winter that China had a small but powerful circle of friends in the White House and Cabinet.  Dr. Lauchlin Currie was sent to China as President Roosevelt's special adviser and returned a strong backer of increased aid to China in general and my air plans in particular.  Another trusted adviser of the President-Thomas Corcoran-did yeoman service in pushing the American Volunteer Group project when the pressure against it was strongest."
"Planes were a tough problem.  China had been a long-time, profitable customer for Curtiss-Wright, so my old friend, Burdette Wright, Curtiss Vice-President, came up with a proposition.  They had six assembly lines turning out P-40's for the British, who had taken over a French order after the fall of France.  If the British would waive their priority on 100 P-40B's then rolling off one line, Curtiss would add a seventh assembly line and make 100 later-model P-40's for the British.  The British were glad to exchange the P-40B for a model more suitable for combat.


Manufacturer:Curtiss-Wright Aeroplane Company
Powerplant:One Allison 1,040 hp V-1710-33 in-line
Dimensions:Length: 31 ft., 8 in.
Height: 12 ft., 4 in.
Wingspan: 37 ft., 4 in.
Wing Area: 235.9 sq. ft.
Weight:Empty: 5,590 lb.
Gross: 7,600 lb.
Performance:Max Speed: 352 mph
Climb: 2,860 ft./min.
Ceiling: 32,400 ft.
Range: 730 miles
Armament:Two .50-caliber cowl-mounted and four .30-caliber wing guns

The P-40B Tomahawk evolved from the Curtiss Model 75 Hawk, a radial-engined fighter introduced in the mid-1930s. First flown in October 1938, the XP-40 was the fastest U.S. Army fighter at the time, and deliveries of the P-40 began in June 1940. The P-40B first flew in November 1941, and was quickly sent to the Royal Air Force (RAF) under Lend-Lease. The original models lacked self-sealing fuel tanks and carried two .50-caliber cowl-mounted guns and two .30-caliber guns in the wings. The P-40B was improved with self-sealing tanks, pilot armor and two extra wing guns, though the RAF versions of the Tomahawk were armed with six .303-caliber machine guns. B and C-model Tomahawks served with the RAF in North Africa in 1941-1942, where it was quickly discovered that the aircraft was inferior to the German BF-109, except at low altitude. The British turned down further deliveries, preferring to wait for the more powerful P-40D and E "Kittyhawk."

 P40B at the Naval Aviation Museum, Awesome Place, well worth the trip...and they let you touch the airplanes!!

"The P-40B was not equipped with a gun sight, bomb rack or provisions for attaching auxiliary fuel tanks to the wing or belly.  Much of our effort during training and combat was devoted to makeshift attempts to remedy these deficiencies.  The combat record of the First American Volunteer Group in China is even more remarkable because its pilots were aiming their guns through a crude, homemade, ring-and-post gun sight instead of the more accurate optical sights used by the Air Corps and the Royal Air Force.
"Personnel proved a tougher nut to crack.  The military were violently opposed to the whole idea of American volunteers in China.  Lauchlin Currie and I went to see General Arnold in April of 1941.  He was 100% opposed to the project.
"In the Navy, Rear Admiral Jack Towers, then Chief of the Bureau of Aeronautics and later Commander of the Navy's Pacific Air Forces also viewed the A.V.G. as a threat to his expansion program. . .
". . . It took direct personal intervention from President Roosevelt to pry the pilots and ground crews from the Army and Navy.  On April 15, 1941, an unpublished executive order went out under his signature, authorizing reserve officer and enlisted men to resign from the Army Air Corps, Naval and Marine air services for the purpose of joining the American Volunteer Group in China.
"Orders went out to all military air fields, signed by Secretary Knox and General Arnold, authorizing bearers of certain letters freedom of the post, including permission to talk with all personnel . . .
" . . . Their offer was a one-year contract with CAMCO (Central Aircraft Manufacturing Company) to 'manufacture, repair and operate aircraft at salaries ranging from $250 to $750 a month.  Traveling expenses, 30 days leave with pay, quarters, and $30 additional for rations were specified.  They would be subject to summary dismissal by written notice for insubordination, habitual use of drugs or alcohol, illness not incurred in line of duty, malingering, and revealing confidential information.  Before the end of the A.V.G., I had to dismiss at least one man for every cause except revealing confidential information.  A system of fines was initiated for minor offences.
"There was not mention in the contract of a $500-bonus for every Japanese plane destroyed.  Volunteers were told simply that there was a rumor that the Chinese government would pay $500 for each confirmed Jap plane.  They could take the rumor for what it was worth.  It turned out to be worth exactly $500 per plane.  Although initially the five-hundred-dollar-bonus was paid for confirmed planes destroyed in air combat only, the bonus was soon applied to planes destroyed on the ground - if they could be confirmed."*
The first contingent (of pilots) of the American Volunteer Group left San Francisco on July 10, 1941, aboard the Dutch ship Jaegersfontaine.  Just before leaving, Chennault received confirmation of Presidential approval for the second American Volunteer Group of bombers with a schedule of 100 pilots and 181 gunners and radio men to arrive in China by November, 1941, and an equal number to follow in January, 1942.
Upon returning to the Orient in the summer of 1941, Chennault arranged with the British for the use of the Royal Air Force Keydaw airdrome at Toungoo, Burma.  Arrangements were made by the Chinese with the British for the assembly and test flying by the A.V.G. of its P-40's.  The A.V.G. P-40's were assembled at Rangoon, and all radios, oxygen equipment, and armament were installed by A.V.G. group mechanics at Toungoo.
Speaking of the combat training routines of the A.V.G. at Toungoo, Chennault states:
"Our Toungoo routine began at 6:00 a.m. with a lecture in a teakwood classroom near the field, where I held forth with black-board, maps, and mimeographed textbooks.  All my life I have been a teacher, ranging from the one-room schools of rural Louisiana to director of one of the largest Air Corps flying schools, but I believe that the best teaching of my career was done in that teakwood shack at Toungoo, where the assortment of American volunteers turned into the word-famous Flying Tigers, whose aerial combat record has never been equaled by a group of comparable size.
"Every pilot who arrived before September 15 got seventy-two hours of lectures in addition to sixty hours of specialized flying.  I gave the pilots a lesson in the geography of Asia that they all needed badly, told them something of the war in China, and how the Chinese air-raid warning net worked.
"I taught them all I knew about the Japanese.  Day after day there were lectures from my notebooks, filled during the previous four years of combat.  All of the bitter experience from Nanking to Chunking was poured out in those lectures.  Captured Japanese flying and staff manuals, translated into English by the Chinese, served as textbooks.  From these manuals the American pilots learned more about Japanese tactics than any single Japanese pilot ever knew."*
In describing the results of such combat training, Chennault says:
"Later there was ample opportunity for comparison.  The A.V.G. and R.A.F. fought side by side over Rangoon with comparable numbers, equipment, and courage against the same odds.  The R.A.F. barely broke even against the Japanese, while the Americans rolled up a 15 to 1 score.  In February, 1942, the Japanese threw heavy raids against Rangoon and Port Darwin, Australia, in the same week.  Over Rangoon five A.V.G. pilots in P-40's shot down 17 out of 70 enemy raiders without loss.  Over Darwin, 11 out of 12 U.S. Army Forces P-40's were shot down by a similar Japanese force.  A few weeks later a crack R.A.F. Spitfire squadron was rushed to Australia from Europe and lost 17 out of 27 pilots over Darwin in two raids.  The Spitfire was far superior to the P-40 as a combat plane.  It was simply a matter of tactics.  The R.A.F. pilots were trained in methods that were excellent against German and Italian equipment but suicide against the acrobatic Japs.  The only American squadron in China that the Japanese ever liked to fight was a P-38 squadron that had fought in North Africa and refused to change its tactics against the Japanese.
"During the first year of the war the A.V.G. tactics were spread throughout the Army and Navy by intelligence repots and returned A.V.G. veterans.  At least one Navy Commander in the Pacific and an Air Force colonel with the Fifth Air Force in Australia were later decorated for "inventing" what were originally the A.V.G. tactics."*
Following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, an agreement was worked out between the Chinese and the British whereby one squadron of the A.V.G. would assist the R.A.F. in the defense of Rangoon with the other two squadrons to be stationed at Kunming, the China end of the Burma Road, where there was an adequate warning net and dispersal fields.
The Third A.V.G. squadron(Hell's Angels) moved to Rangoon on December 12, 1941, to join the R.A.F. in the defense of Rangoon.  The First (Adam and Eve)and Second squadrons(Panda Bears) flew from Toungoo to Kunming on the afternoon of the 18th.  The first combat for the A.V.G. occurred over southern Yunnan Province on December 20, 1941.  In their first combat, a combination of the First and Second Squadrons, shot down nine out of ten Japanese bombers with a loss of one A.V.G. aircraft.  The second engagement brought the Third Squadron onto action over Rangoon on December 23, with the R.A.F. flying beside the Tigers.  The total haul of Japs was six bombers and four fighters.  The R.A.F. lost five planes and pilots and the A.V.G. lost four planes and two pilots.
Then, on Christmas Day, two waves totaling 80 Jap bombers and 48 fighters hit Rangoon.  The A.V.G. knocked down 23 of them, the biggest victory of the war, with six more Jap planes believed shot down over the Gulf of Martaban.  The A.V.G. suffered not the loss of a single plane.
The 28th brought another heavy enemy attack - 20 bombers and 25 fighters.  The A.V.G. got 10 of them with no losses.
The next day, the 29th, the Japs threw 40 bombers and 20 fighters against the Tigers who scored 18 kills with a loss of only a single aircraft.
Now it was the day of New Year's Eve but it dawned with no let up in the Jap assault.  80 planes crowding the skies over Rangoon.  The Tigers shot down 15 without the loss of a single aircraft.
In 11 days of fighting, the A.V.G. had officially knocked 75 enemy aircraft out of the skies with an undetermined number of probable kills such as the losses the Japs suffered over the Gulf of Martaban.  The A.V.G. losses were two pilots and six aircraft.
Early in January, the Rangoon defense was reinforced by eight planes from the First Squadron and the A.V.G. began their first strafing of the war.  Hitting the Jap air base in Thailand, they wiped out a dozen planes on the ground.  On January 13, the remainder of the First Squadron joined the other A.V.G. forces at Rangoon and there followed a series of raids on Jap air bases.  Ten days later, January 23, after a series of engagements over Kunming and Rangoon, the Japes attacked Rangoon in force again, 72 planes appearing there and the A.V.G. got 21 of them with the loss of only one American pilot.  Air battles continued over Rangoon until it finally fell to enemy ground forces at the end of February.  During this time, in one strafing raid in Thailand, the A.V.G. knocked out upwards of 60 enemy aircraft on the ground, the biggest ground victory of the war.  But advancing Jap ground forces slowly drove the A.V.G. to bases at Magwe in Burma and eventually into the interior of China.
There, the Tigers continued to carry out their final missions, supporting the Chinese ground forces on both eastern and western fronts as well as defending Chinese cities against attacks by the Japanese Air Force.
Concerning the A.V.G. combat statistics, Chennault says:
"Although, the A.V.G. was blooded over China, it was the air battles over Rangoon that stamped the hallmark on its fame as the Flying Tigers.  The cold statistics for the 10 weeks the A.V.G. served at Rangoon show its strength varied between twenty and five serviceable P-40's.  This tiny force met a total of a thousand-odd Japanese aircraft over Southern Burma and Thailand.  In 31 encounters they destroyed 217 enemy planes and probably destroyed 43.  Our losses in combat were four pilots killed in the air, one killed while strafing and one taken prisoner.  Sixteen P-40's were destroyed.  During the same period, the R.A.F., fighting side by side with the A.V.G., destroyed 74 enemy planes, probably destroyed 33, with a loss of 22 Buffaloes and Hurricanes.
"Winston Churchill, then Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, added his eloquence to these statistics, cabling the Governor of Burma, 'The victories of these Americans over the rice paddies of Burma are comparable in character, if not in scope, with those won by the R.A.F. over the hop fields of Kent in the Battle of Britain.'
"Air Vice Marshal D.F. Stephenson who replaced Manning in January, 1942, noted that while the ratio of British to German planes in the battle of Britain and been one to four, the ratio of Anglo-American fighters to Japanese planes over Rangoon was one to from four to 14"*

 Insignia of the AVG, this one is the 1st squadron "Adam and Eve", and this was taken by me at the same Naval Aviation Museum...the place that lets you touch the airplanes!!
In describing the genesis of the name "Flying Tigers" and the group's insignia, Chennault says:
"Before I left the United States in the summer of 1941, I asked a few friends in Louisiana to watch the newspapers and send me any clippings about the A.V.G.  Now I was being swamped with clippings from stateside newspapers, and my men were astonished to find themselves world famous as the Flying Tigers.  The insignia we made famous was by no means original with the A.V.G.  Our pilots copied the shark-tooth design on their P-40's noses from a colored illustration in the India Illustrated Weekly depicting an R.A.F. squadron in the Libyan Desert with shark-nose P-40's.  Even before that the German Air Force painted shark's teeth on some of its Messerschmitt 210 fighters.  With the pointed nose of a liquid cooled engine it was an apt and fearsome design.  How the term Flying Tigers was derived from the shark-nosed P-40's I never will know.  At any rate we were somewhat surprised to find ourselves billed under that name.  It was not until just before the A.V.G. was disbanded that we had any kind of group insignia.  At the request of the China Defense Supplies in Washington, the Walt Disney organization in Hollywood designed our insignia consisting of a winged tiger flying through a large V for victory."*
After the fall of Rangoon, the sluggish match between the Japanese Air Force and the A.V.G.-R.A.F., combination continued over Northern Burma.  The Japanese now had an estimated 14 air regiments spaced in Southern Burma and Thailand with a strength of between 400 to 500 planes.  This compared with about 30 serviceable fighters and a dozen Blenheim bombers of the Allied force.
In summing up the results of the Burma campaign, Chennault says:
"In his official report on the Burma campaign Air Vice Marshall D.F. Stephenson had this to say of the A.V.G.:
'In the Burma campaign the main brunt of the fighting was borne by the P-40 squadrons of the American Volunteer Group.  They were first in the field with pilots well trained, and good fighting equipment.  The great majority of enemy aircraft destroyed in Burma fell to their guns.  Their gallantry in action won the admiration of both services'."*
After the Burma campaign ended with the capture and occupation by the Japanese of that country, the A.V.G. continued its fight against the Japs, first in Western China and then in Eastern China.
The A.V.G. was finally disbanded on July 4, 1942.  The group celebrated its final day in the air by knocking down five enemy fighters over Hengyang and escorting U.S. Army Air Forces B-25's to bomb the Japanese air base at Canton.  At midnight on July 4, 1942, the American Volunteer Group passed into history.  In summarizing that history over the preceding year, Chennault states:
"The group that the military experts predicted would not last three weeks in combat had fought for seven months over Burma, China, Thailand, and French Indo-China, destroying 299 Japanese planes with another 153 probably destroyed.  All of this with a loss of 12 P-40's in combat and 61 on the ground, including the 22 burned at Loi-Wing.  Four pilots were killed in air combat; six were killed by anti-aircraft fire; three by enemy bombs on the ground; and three were taken prisoner.  Ten more died as a result of flying accidents.  Although the Japanese promised on their radio broadcasts to shoot A.V.G. prisoners as bandits, they treated our three prisoners as well as regular British and American POW's.  I took it as an indication of the enemy's genuine respect for our organization.
"Most of the group had been decorated by the Chinese government; 10 pilots had been awarded the British and American distinguished Flying Crosses.  My personal awards included the Chinese Cloud Banner and Long Sword of a Commander, the Order of the British Empire, and the U.S. Distinguished Service Medal.  The flashing shark's teeth of our P-40's and our trademark as Flying Tigers were world famous.
"The group had whipped the Japanese Air Force in more than 50 air battles without a single defeat.  With the R.A.F. it had kept the port of Rangoon and the Burma Road open for 2 1/2 precious months while supplies trickled into China.  With less than one-third of its combat strength it saved China from final collapse on the Salween.  Its reputation alone was sufficient to keep Japanese bombers away from Chunking.  It freed the cities of East China from years of terror bombing and finally gave both Chinese and American morale an incalculable boost at a time when it was sagging dangerously low.  All this cost the Chinese $8,000,000 - about $3,000,000 in salaries and personnel expenses and $5,000,000 for planes and equipment.  After the final accounting was made, I wrote Dr. Soong my regrets that expenses had exceeded my original estimates.
"He replied, 'The A.V.G. was the soundest investment China ever made.  I am ashamed that you should even consider the cost'."*
In April, 1942, President Franklin D. Roosevelt wrote of the American Volunteer Group:
"The outstanding gallantry and conspicuous daring that the American Volunteer Group combined with their unbelievable efficiency is a source of tremendous pride throughout the whole of America.  The fact that they have labored under the shortages and difficulties is keenly appreciated . . . "
After the American Volunteer Group was disbanded on July 4, 1942, the China Air Task Force of the United States Army Air Forces, commanded by General Chennault, officially took over air operations in China.  In early March, 1943, the 14th Air Force was activated under the command of Chennault and replaced the China Air Task Force.  Chennault remained in command of the 14th Air Force  until the end of July, 1945.  General Chennault formally retired from the military for the second time in October, 1945.
*Quoted portions from Way of a Fighter by Claire L. Chennault

This Pic was snagged by me from one of my leads that had this pic as a screen saver on his computer.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Interesting times...

I was going to do a historical post, I had one in mind but the events in the past day bumped the Historical post.  
   For Starters we have the Russian Ambassador in Turkey killed by a security policeman in a terrorist incident..
    Now unless I miss my guess, normally wacking an ambassador is what is called "Casus Belli",  After the metrosexual in  the White House accused Russia of stealing the election from the "annointed one"  Hillary and made other accusations of the same, they forgot that Wikileaks said that the leaks didn't come from the Russians but from a staffer that was pissed about how Bernie got railroaded and the corruption of the Clinton Foundation, but lets push the Narrative.  But I digress, we have the Ambassador get wacked and it was a terrorst attack with the familiar...
     If I was in the middle East, I would be very concerned, Also if I was in N.A.T.O I also would be concerned, Turkey is in N.A.T.O and the Europeans have cut their defense budget at the end of the cold war to keep the free stuff coming to their populace and the military is pretty small right now....and the biggest ally they have is across the Atlantic and their ally is politically divided and the American Military is weakened after 2 wars, social engineering and 8 years of Obama's policies.   I would be very concerned.

     We also had a wait for it........Muslim take a Tractor trailer full of steel beams and runs over people at a Kriskindlemart(Christmasmarket) in Berlin,
This bothers me on several levels, when I was stationed in Germany, in Christmas I would go to the ChrisKindleMart and drink a bit of "Gluwine" and look at the scenery and absorb the local meaning of Christmas.  So that bothers me and also I was attached to Field Station Berlin and spent some time in that city, granted it was back when it was a divided city but my feelings for Berlin remain strong.  Also the fact that it was against civilians and most likely a muslim that did it.  Germany has taken in hundred of thousands of "refugees" and they have been committing crimes against the local people.  I have seen quite a few youtube video's that the Germans post telling of their run-ins with the "auslanders" and the crime and that the state supports the refugees over the locals.  the locals are very pissed and Angela Merkel the German chancellor is being blamed for this.  She has brought in all these people that would not assimilate into German culture, they view their own belief system as superior to the wishy washy Europeans.
    And finally we had the Chinese seize an American drone on the high seas and the muted response has perplexed and concerned our allies in the Pacific.  It looks like Obama has already checked out of the international arena.  It looks like the Chinese are getting frisky again.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Monday Music "Linger" by the Cranberries

  I was driving to work and this song came on my rotation in my truck and I remember this song, it reminds me when I was driving to visit my girl who would be later my wife.  This song came on the radio while I was driving to meet her for the first time and I being a strange person related it to that event.   It is a good song and easy on the ears. 

"Linger" is a song composed by Irish musicians Dolores O'Riordan and Noel Hogan of the rock band The Cranberries, released in 1993. The song, which has an acoustic arrangement featuring a string section, became the band's first major hit, peaking at #3 in the Republic of Ireland, #8 in the United States, and #14 in the UK. The song was voted by Triple J listeners as #3 on the Triple J Hottest 100, 1993 chart.

In the documentary '99 Love Life & Rock 'n' Roll, O'Riordan says that the song is about her first serious kiss. Originally, the lyrics were written by Cranberries' first singer Niall Quinn. After O'Riordan was hired as the lead singer for the band, she wrote her own set of lyrics, turning it into a song of regret and based on a soldier she once fell in love with.

The music video for "Linger", shot in grayscale, is a tribute to Jean-Luc Goddard's 1965 noir film Alphaville. In one of the rooms of the hotel, a silent film is being shown which features 1950s stripper Blaze Starr.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Some stuff at work

Those that know me in "Real life" know where I actually work at, but I don't broadcast it on my blog. Here is some background on a good deed we did at work, I went and brought in a stuffed animal

I brought this in to help out one of my fellow employees whose 5 year old niece was going into the hospital and this little girl wanted to bring teddy bears to all the kids in the hospital. So the entire hanger brought in stuffed animals. When I was bringing in the stuffed animal I had some people ask " what's with that?" And I replied " well we have some people get triggered by Hillary losing so this is for their safe space." The stuffed animal is a feel good story for the holidays but I still am a cynical grumpy mechanic.
 Here is the Haul we gathered up.
And here is a modification I performed on my truck,  I won't dress it up like my "disgruntled Veteran" Ranger, but I did add this.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Some thoughts on the recent "Hacking" kerfluffle..

I know that everyone has heard of the recent CIA report about the Russians hacking the American election process.  If this is so, than this is an issue.  I do have several thoughts on this.  As I understand it, the CIA released a report that suggested that the Russians "possibly" interfered with the election process and the Left positively exploded, "A-ha...The Russians interfered with the Election process."  For starters, the CIA has no mandate to operate on domestic soil and the U.S. election is a domestic event.  If there was a problem, it would be the F.B.I that is supposed to handle this.  Also the 17 different intelligence agencies don't back the assertion that the Russkies did the hacking.   It is funny that the left is glomming on the CIA report when in the past they derided what ever the CIA said and Obama openly funded Benjamin Netanyahu opponents in the Israeli election in violation of U.S. Law and nothing came of this so I have a credibility problem.  Also why is that the people that hacked the DNC and Hillary's home brewed server left no tracks but these people left tracks that said "Russians".  Somehow I have a problem with this. it smells of "false flag" but what do I know, I am just a deplorable airplane mechanic.

     On a slightly different note, I noticed that the same people that glommed on this story are the same one that decried "False News", you know the news that the mainstream media peddled to cover for their chosen candidate,   These democrats are in denial, they keep looking for reasons why they lost besides the obvious one....their candidate sucked big time.  The Democrats pushed a crooked, disbarred lawyer that was more known for her temper tantrums, and running roughshod over people especially if she don't like them, and the pay for play schemes that she had while she was SEC of State.  And the democrats are upset that the Russians might have influenced the elections, kinda like the DNC screwed over Bernie Sanders and the funny thing is that if Bernie Sanders was the Democrat nominee, he would have beat Trump so we can thank the democrat political machine for nominating a crooked mean vicious women whose sole value was "I have a vagina and it is my turn"  the identity politics bit the Democrats in the ass and they won't admit it.  They have to blame everything from Russians, alt news, voting laws and many other reasons except that they screwed the pooch with the American public.  The Democrats forgot their core voters, the middle class voters that are looking to better themselves, instead they became the politics of "Gender, Victim-hood and identity politics."  well the average man and women were tired of all the crap out of Washington and yanked the voting lever for somebody that had their voice and the choice shocked the political world. 

Monday, December 12, 2016

Monday Music "While you See a Chance" by Steve Winwood

I first heard of Steve Winwood when this song hit the radio, this song quickly became one of my favorites.  Steve had several other hits afterwards that I liked.  he is an extraordinarily talented musician and his records and popularity has stood the test of time.  I will do a song of his in a few weeks called "Valerie"  a subsequent hit in 1987 and the story behind that song.   I have been real busy in RL as they say, not so much work but the run up for the Christmas Holidays.
I was told that that could be Harry speaking to me...

Arc of a Diver is the second solo studio album by singer/multi-instrumentalist Steve Winwood. All of the instruments featured on the album were performed entirely by Winwood.
Featuring his first solo hit "While You See a Chance", (which peaked at No. 7 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the United States), this was Winwood's true breakthrough album as a solo artist. It peaked at No. 3 on the Billboard 200 album chart, establishing him as a commercially viable act.
The cover artwork for the album was by Tony Wright.

"While You See a Chance" is a song performed by Steve Winwood in 1980, who also wrote it alongside Will Jennings. It was released on his album Arc of a Diver and peaked at #7 on the Billboard Hot 100 in April 1981, and also reached #68 on the Billboard Top 100 for the year 1981. The song was a bigger hit in Canada, where it peaked at #3; however, it only reached #45 in the UK.
The song's keyboard introduction was not originally intended to be part of the song. The track was thrown together fairly quickly after Winwood discovered that he had accidentally deleted his intended drum track introduction while preparing for vocals. He wrote a new introduction on the spot as a replacement.
Many radio stations, when the song was released, played the version of the single used in the video, which cut the song's length from 5:15 to 3:55. The edit occurs in the middle of the song, immediately following the lyric "Don't you wonder how you keep on moving? One more day, your way." In the full version, Winwood follows this line by repeating the words "Oh, your way," while in the short version, an instrumental passage follows immediately.

In D-TV, the song was set to the Disney classic The Sword in the Stone. The Boston Red Sox played the song after they defeated the Chicago White Sox 3–1 in Fenway Park to end the 1990 Major League Baseball season and clinch the American League Eastern Division championship.

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Some tidbits and information on the Army/Navy game

I was watching the Army/Navy game, the series has been dubbed "America's Game", the game is the only game that the participants are willing to lay down their lives if necessary for the other side.  Which is an unusual concept unless you are a member of the brotherhood and understand  the concept of self sacrifice.  I used to watch the game in the late 70's and early 80's with my Dad who is an Army guy, I supported Navy because I had read all this stuff on WWII and was wanting to join the Navy and be a carrier pilot.  Funny how life goes, I joined the Army and saw and did a lot of things so I supported my Army team ever since. 
    The Army won but it was a good game, both teams played well and there were very few penalties...unusual for a football game. President-Elect Donald Trump made an appearance and was cheered on by both sides.

 I have included video's from both the Army and Navy's perspectives. 
Kids Play Army...Not Navy..

Army and Navy first met on the football field on November 29, 1890. The series has been renewed annually since 1899, except for 1909, 1917, 1918 and 1929. It has been held at several locations throughout its history, including Baltimore and New York City, but has most frequently been played in Philadelphia, roughly equidistant from the two academies. Historically played on the Saturday after Thanksgiving (a date on which most other major college football teams end their regular seasons), the game is now played on the second Saturday in December and is traditionally the last game of the season for both teams and the last regular-season game played in Division I-A football. With the permanent expansion of the regular season to 12 games starting in 2006, several conference championship games joined the Army–Navy Game on its then-current date of the first weekend of December. In 2009, the game was moved from the first Saturday in December to the second Saturday; this means that it will no longer conflict with conference championship games and once again is the last non-bowl contest in college football.

                     1908 Army–Navy college football game at Franklin Field.
This game has inter-service "bragging rights" at stake. For much of the first half of the 20th century, both Army and Navy were often national powers, and the game occasionally had national championship implications. However, as the level of play in college football improved nationally, and became fueled by prospects of playing in the National Football League (NFL), the high academic entrance requirements, height and weight limits, and the five-year military commitment required has reduced the overall competitiveness of both academies. Since 1963, only the 1996, 2010, and 2016 games have seen both teams enter with winning records. Nonetheless, the game is considered a college football institution. It has aired nationally on radio since the late 1920s, and has been nationally televised every year since 1945. The tradition associated with the game assures that it remains nationally broadcast to this day.
Arguably, one of the reasons this game has maintained its appeal is that the players are playing solely for the love of the game. By the time their post-graduation military commitments end, many players are simply deemed too old to even consider playing competitively again, much less in the professional ranks. Many have other post-service ambitions that would preclude such a career, or they simply do not want to pursue one. Nevertheless, some participants in the Army–Navy Game have gone on to professional football careers. Quarterback Roger Staubach (Navy, 1965) went on to a Hall of Fame career with the Dallas Cowboys that included being named the Most Valuable Player of Super Bowl VI. Wide receiver and kickoff/punt returner Phil McConkey (Navy, 1979) was a popular player on the New York Giants' squad that won Super Bowl XXI. Running back Napoleon McCallum (Navy, 1985) was able to concurrently serve his commitment to the Navy and play for the then-Los Angeles Raiders in 1986. After satisfying his Navy commitment, he joined the Raiders full-time. Sadly, his career was ended by a gruesome knee injury suffered in a game against the San Francisco 49ers in 1994.
The game is especially emotional for the seniors, called "first classmen" by both academies, since it is typically the last competitive regular season football game they will ever play (though both Army and Navy went to bowl games afterwards in 1996 and 2010, and Navy played in a bowl game every season since 2003, except for 2011). During wartime the game is even more emotional, as some seniors will not return once they are deployed. For instance, in the 2004 game, at least one senior from the class of 2003 who was killed in Iraq, Navy's J. P. Blecksmith, was remembered. The players placed their comrade's pads and jerseys on chairs on the sidelines. Much of the sentiment of the game goes out to those who share the uniform and who are overseas.
At the end of the game, both teams' alma maters are played and sung. The winning team stands alongside the losing team and faces the losing academy students; then the losing team accompanies the winning team, facing their students. This is done in a show of mutual respect and solidarity. Since the winning team's alma mater is always played last, the phrase "to sing second" has become synonymous with winning the rivalry game.

The rivalry between Annapolis and West Point, while friendly, is intense. Even the mascots (the Navy Goat and Army Mule) have been known to play pranks on each other. The Cadets live and breathe the phrase "Beat Navy", while Midshipmen have the opposite phrase, "Beat Army", drummed into them (even the weight plates in the Navy weight room are stamped with "Beat Army"). They have become a symbol of competitiveness, not just in the Army–Navy Game, but in the service of their country, and are often used at the close of (informal) letters by graduates of both academies. A long-standing tradition at the Army-Navy football game is to conduct a formal "prisoner exchange" as part of the pre-game activities. The prisoners are the cadets and midshipmen currently spending the semester studying at the sister academy. After the exchange, students have a brief reprieve to enjoy the game with their comrades.
Occasionally, the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy, awarded to each season's winner of the triangular series between Army, Navy, and Air Force, will be at stake in this game. For most of the 1970s, Navy had held the trophy. After a period of flux for most of the 1980s, Air Force dominated the competition until the early 2000s. Navy has been the dominant team in the rivalry for most of the 2000s, winning every game in the triangular rivalry starting with the 2002 Army–Navy Game and ending with a 2010 loss to Air Force. If there is a tie in the Commander-In-Chief Trophy competition, the trophy remains with the incumbent team.
The rivalries Army and Navy have with Air Force are much less intense than the Army–Navy rivalry, primarily due to the relative youth of the Air Force Academy, having been established in the 1950s, and the physical distance between Air Force and the other two schools, with the Air Force Academy being located in Colorado Springs, Colorado. The Army–Air Force and Navy–Air Force games are played at the academies' regular home fields, rather than at a neutral site, although Navy has occasionally moved its home games with Air Force to FedExField in Landover, Maryland.
The 34–0 Navy victory over Army on December 6, 2008, was the first shutout in the series since 1978 and marked the second time a Navy coach defeated Army in his first year of coaching, following Wayne Hardin in 1959. As of 2015, Navy has won the last 14 games in a row dating back to 2002, the longest winning streak in the history of the series.
 "this Year anything could Happen..."
Though the game has been played 115 times, only six of those games have ever been held on the campus of either academy. Neither team has ever played at an on-campus stadium nearly large enough to accommodate the large crowds that usually attend the game, as well as the media and dignitaries. Army's Michie Stadium only seats 38,000 people, while Navy's Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium only seats 34,000. The game's popularity grew enough early on that when it was revived in 1899, it was played at a neutral site, the Franklin Field in Philadelphia. Except for the 1942 and 1943 games, which were played on-campus due to World War II travel restrictions, it has been played at a neutral site every year since.
The game is primarily played in Philadelphia at Lincoln Financial Field, the home of the Philadelphia Eagles. Since 1989, the game has been held Traditionally, the game is played in Philadelphia, due to the historic nature of the city and the fact that it is approximately halfway between West Point and Annapolis. Additionally, Philadelphia has always had a stadium large enough to accommodate the crowds. Philadelphia's John F. Kennedy Stadium (JFK) hosted the game from 1936 to 1979 (except for three years in World War II) – more than any other venue in the history of the series. It even hosted the game for several years after the 1971 construction of nearby Veterans Stadium, which finally became the game's host in 1980. The Pennsylvania Railroad and its successors offered game-day service to all Army–Navy games (except several during WWII) at John F. Kennedy Stadium, using a sprawling temporary station constructed each year on the railroad's nearby Greenwich freight yard. The service, with 40-odd trains serving as many as 30,000 attendees, was the single largest concentrated passenger rail movement in the country.
Franklin Field, on the campus of the University of Pennsylvania, hosted the game in the early twentieth century before it was moved to JFK. New York's Polo Grounds holds the record for most games hosted outside of Philadelphia, even though the last time it hosted one was 1925. The city of Baltimore has hosted a number of games throughout the history of the series as well, even though Baltimore is closer to Annapolis.
A Midshipman Production
The Rose Bowl is the only site west of the Mississippi River to host the Army–Navy game; it did so in 1983. The city of Pasadena, California, paid for the travel expenses of all the students and supporters of both academies – 9,437 in all. A substitute, however, for Bill XXII – the Navy mascot – and four rented Army mules were brought in. The attendance was 81,000. The game was held at the Rose Bowl that year because there are a large number of military installations and servicemen and women, along with many retired military personnel, on the West Coast. The game has been held one other time in a non-East Coast venue, at Chicago's Soldier Field, which played host to the 1926 game.
Currently the game is played primarily at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, the home of the Philadelphia Eagles. Since 1989, the game has been held roughly once every four or five years at a site other than Philadelphia. These sites have in the past rotated between Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey (replaced in 2010 by MetLife Stadium, which has yet to host the game) and M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. These are still considered neutral-site games, but provide locations that are closer to one academy or the other

Navy Midshipman (and later Admiral) Joseph Mason Reeves wore what is widely regarded as the first football helmet in the 1893 Army–Navy Game. He had been advised by a Navy doctor that another kick to his head would result in intellectual disability or even death, so he commissioned an Annapolis shoemaker to make him a helmet out of leather.
On November 27, 1926, the Army–Navy Game was held in Chicago for the National Dedication of Soldier Field as a monument to American servicemen who had fought in World War I. Navy came to the game undefeated, while West Point had only lost to Notre Dame, so the game would decide the National Championship. Played before a crowd of over 100,000, the teams fought to a 21–21 tie, but Navy was awarded the national championship.
In both the 1944 and 1945 contests, Army and Navy entered the game ranked #1 and #2 respectively. The 1945 game was labeled the "game of the century" before it was played. Army defeated a 7–0–1 Navy team 32–13. Navy's lone tie was against Notre Dame.
In 1963, shortly after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, Jacqueline Kennedy urged the academies to play after there had been talk of cancellation. Originally scheduled for November 30, 1963, the game was played on December 7, 1963 also coinciding with the 22nd anniversary of Pearl Harbor Day. In front of a crowd of 102,000 people in Philadelphia's Municipal Stadium, later named John F. Kennedy Stadium, junior (second class Midshipman) quarterback Roger Staubach led number two ranked Navy to victory which clinched a Cotton Bowl national championship matchup with Texas played on January 1, 1964. Army was led by junior (second class Cadet) quarterback Rollie Stichweh. Stichweh led off the game with a touchdown drive that featured the first use of instant replay on television. Army nearly won the game after another touchdown and two point conversion, Stichweh recovered the onside kick and drove the ball to the Navy 2 yard line. On 4th down and no timeouts, crowd noise prevented Stichweh from calling a play and time expired with the 21–15 final score. Staubach won the Heisman Trophy that year and was bumped off the scheduled cover of Life magazine due to the coverage of the assassination. Stichweh and Staubach would meet again in 1964 as First Class where Stichweh's Army would defeat Staubach's Navy. Staubach went on to serve in the Navy and afterward became a Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback with the Dallas Cowboys. Stichweh served five years in Vietnam with the 173rd Airborne Brigade. Stichweh was inducted into the Army Sports Hall of Fame in 2012.