Memorial Day for me is about reflection, it is about honoring those who have made the ultimate sacrifice in service to our nation. I find myself thinking of our service members almost daily. I’ m extremely thankful for all who have served, all who are serving and for the sacrifices those families make as well.
It’s June 1953 and Dwight D. Eisenhower graced the Oval Office of the White House. This installment of “History Past” takes us into my collection of historical images, as these 3 iconic Kodachrome’s were taken while on a tour of the White House.
This weeks “Postcard of the Week” is a vintage linen Santa Fe Railway “Map” postcard which was mailed on September 8th 1944 in Gallup, New Mexico. It appears that “Bob” is in the United States Navy and there was no charge for postage. Here are some Wikipedia facts from September 1944.
10: Luxembourg is liberated by U.S. First Army.
: Two Allied forces meet at Dijon, cutting France in half.
: First Allied troops enter Germany, entering Aachen, a city on the border.
: Dutch railway workers go on strike. The German response results in the Dutch famine of 1944.
20: The Government of Estonia seizes the government buildings of Toompea from the German forces and appeals to the Soviet Union for the independence of Estonia.
: United States XVI Corps arrives in European Theater.
21: British forces take Rimini, Italy.
: The Second Dumbarton Oaks Conference begins: it will set guidelines for the United Nations.
: In Belgium, Charles of Flanders is sworn in as Prince-Regent while a decision is delayed about whether King Leopold III can ever return to his functions after being accused of collaboration.
: San Marino declares war on the Axis
: The Government of Estonia prints a few hundred copies of the Riigi Teataja (State Gazette) and is forced to flee under Soviet pressure.
23: Americans take Ulithi atoll in the Caroline Islands; it is a massive atoll that will later become an important naval base.
24: The Red Army is well into Poland at this time.
25: British troops pull out of Arnhem with the failure of Operation Market Garden. Over 6,000 paratroopers are captured. Hopes of an early end to the war are abandoned.
: United StatesIX Corps arrives in Pacific Theater.
26: There are signs of civil war in Greece as the Communist-controlled National Liberation Front and the British-backed government seem irreconcilable.
30: The German garrison in Calais surrenders to Canadian troops. At one time, Hitler thought it would be the focus of the cross-Channel invasion.
A typical dreary afternoon on Monday October 23rd, 2006 here in the Southern Tier. Josh Blay and I were out and about looking for something of interest, something cool to photograph. It’s now late afternoon and we had given up, threading our way east along route 17C from Waverly. We were talking about who knows what, and not really paying much attention to our surroundings. Suddenly my eyes became as big as saucers and with a few expletives we were witnessing a low flying helicopter above the Tri-Cities Airport in Endicott. With our new found excitement Josh and I are now rapidly approaching the airport to get a closer look. A screeching of the brakes, doors flying open, camera gear spilling all over and upon closer inspection we excitedly discover this piece of magnificent machinery is the new Lockheed Martin VH-71 Kestrel “V standing for VIP” (US101 Marine One) Presidential helicopter prototype doing what I’ll call Touch N Go’s…
Hands trembling with excitement as I fumble for a new roll of film, finally my camera’s motor drive begins to hum like the rotors of the VH71, I was elated. I couldn’t believe how lucky we were to photograph such an amazing subject despite the dismal weather conditions. Shortly after our excitement had settled Josh and I figured we should promptly leave before someone really takes notice of us and throws us out.
The VH-71 Kestrel program was canceled in 2009 and recently the United States has entered into contract for 23 new Presidential helicopters. The new, initial contract awarded to the American defense contractor Sikorsky, is valued at $1.24 billion. Under the terms of the new contract, the U.S. military will take delivery of two prototype helicopters—based on the Sikorsky S-92 medium helicopter–in 2016. Another 21 fully capable helicopters will follow.
A rainy, damp and slightly chilly Thursday (Typical Binghamton Weather) would not slow down the Binghamton Area Runners group run at the newly opened Confluence Running in Binghamton, New York. This run would be a little different today as Maegan Krifchin of Stotan Racing (http://stotanracing.com) would join us for our run and a meet and greet afterwards.
Maegan graduated from JFK Bellmore High School on Long Island with a running scholarship to Syracuse University in Syracuse, New York. In 2010 she graduated with a BS in Health & Exercise Science. Moving on to grad school in Ithaca, New York Maegan finished with a MS Occupational Therapy.
Speaking to about 25 runners yesterday evening Maegan’s running accomplishments are pretty impressive to say the least. Career Highlights: 2nd Place at 2012 US Half Marathon Championships, 2012 US Marathon Trials Qualifier, R&R Philadelphia 1/2 Marathon: 1st American, 1:11:04 (3rd fastest US women’s time/2011), Boilermaker Road Race: 5th overall, 1st American, All-Big East Conference in Cross Country (2009), ECAC Champion Mile (2010), All- Northeast Regional Team 2008-2009, Northeast Regional Team champions 2008-2009, ECAC Champion 1000 (2007), NCAA Division I Academic All American 2010, High School All-American 2006. Maegan will be competing in the USA Half Marathon Championships on June 22, 2013 in Duluth, Minnesota.
I’m new to running and I have to admit I was just a bit intimidated in meeting Maegan. Those fears quickly subsided, Maegan with her friendly and bubbly personality put me at ease. Talking with Maegan and listening to her speak gave me new perspective on my running and my future goals. Just like her a marathon is definitely in my future.