Veterans Day 2019

To all the veterans: Thank you.

Pacific Paratrooper

For each and every veteran – Thank You!!

For All Our Todays and Yesterdays

Armistice Day Becomes Veterans Day

World War I officially ended on June 28, 1919, with the signing of the Treaty of Versailles. The actual fighting between the Allies and Germany, however, had ended seven months earlier with the armistice, which went into effect on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month in 1918.  Armistice Day, as November 11 became known, officially became a holiday in the United States in 1926, and a national holiday 12 years later. On June 1, 1954, the name was changed to Veterans Day to honor all U.S. veterans.

For their loyalty

War Dog Memorial on Guam.

US Military dog insignia

The Things That Make a Soldier Great

The things that make a soldier great and send him out to die,

To face the flaming cannon’s mouth…

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The Battle of Leyte Gulf – Part 3


Admiral Halsey’s pilot reported that four of Kurita’s battleships had been severely damaged, that nine cruisers and destroyers had been sunk or heavily damaged, and that the remains of the armada were retreating westward. Halsey assumed that the Center Force was no longer a threat. On the contrary, air attacks by Halsey’s carriers, though damaging to the Japanese fleet, were not the knockout blows reported by the pilots.

Admiral Ozawa artfully coaxed Halsey to chase him. Desperate to lure the
Americans, Ozawa directed his pair of ships that were half-battleship and
half-carrier, the Ise and the Hyuga, to run south and find the
hostile fleet. U.S. planes scouring the area finally spotted the pair around
4:00 pm on Oct. 24.

about 5:30 pm, one spotted the carriers of Admiral Jisaburo Ozawa’s Northern
Force 300 miles to the north of San Bernardino Strait. Now, Halsey regarded the

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The Battle of Leyte Gulf – Part 2


The bridge of Musashi

The messages from the Dace and the Darter, warning of the advance of Kurita’s fleet, began arriving in Flag Plot aboard USS New Jersey at 6:20 am on Oct. 23. Halsey and his staff pondered the significance of the sightings by the two submarines.

was not the only fleet commander tracking the Japanese movements. The Seventh
Fleet - “MacArthur’s Navy” – of old
battleships and small “jeep” carriers floated off the invasion beach,
supporting the landings with gunfire and strafing and bombing runs. Aboard his
flagship at anchor in Leyte Gulf, Adm. Thomas Kinkaid, the commander of the
Seventh Fleet, weighed in with his prediction. In a message to all commanders
(MacArthur, King, Nimitz and Halsey) sent shortly after 10:00 am, Kinkaid
suggested that the Japanese warships were headed to the Philippines to stage
what Kinkaid called a “magnified Tokyo Express.” Kinkaid suggested that…

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Battle of Leyte Gulf – Part 1


Battle of Leyte Gulf was the last great naval confrontation in history and the
largest naval battle of World War II in term of ships and men. It was fought
from Oct. 23 to 26, 1944, between combined American and Australian forces and
Imperial Japanese Navy in the waters off the Philippines. The battle was
immense, involving four separate engagements/battles extending over hundreds of
miles, between fleets that included 35 large and small aircraft carriers, 21
battleships, 34 cruisers and hundreds of destroyers, along with submarines and
motor torpedo boats and more than 1,700 aircraft with over 200,000 naval
personnel involved. As part of the invasion of Leyte, it aimed to isolate Japan
from the countries it had occupied in Southeast Asia which were a vital source
of industrial and oil supplies.

A close up of a map

Description automatically generated

The Battle of Leyte Gulf consisted of four
main separate engagements:

1 – Battle of the Sibuyan…

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Mort Künstler’s exhibition at The Hecksher Museum of Art

Long Island Past and Present

Mort Kunstler is best known for his incomparable paintings of Civil War events. However, he earned his stripes as an illustrator for pulp fiction magazines with his illustrations for men’s pulp adventure magazines published in the 50s, 60s and 70s. For the first time, more than 80 of Mort Künstler’s remarkable original artworks, some shown in magazines and books but many of them never published before, are exhibited together in The Hecksher Museum of Art, 2 Prime Ave., Huntington, NY. The exhibition titled “Mort Künstler: The Godfather of Pulp Fiction Illustrators” are now on view until Nov. 17, 2019.

To see and hear more about the exhibition in Mort Künstler’s own words, click here for the YouTube video preview

Mort Kunstler Video.png

A press release from his office says:

Long before blockbuster superhero movies, those looking for an adrenaline rush turned to adventure magazines featuring exciting stories and thrilling illustrations. As the go-to-artist…

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October Festivals in the Philippines


Zamboanga Festival by

Filipinos love to party. They will find any excuse to have a party. They celebrate births, marriages, saints’ days and everything else. The Spanish adapted traditional rituals by celebrating a saint’s birthday on dates formerly associated with animistic rituals.

You will see festivals in every ethnic group, as people get together for essentially spiritual events. Drama, excitement, food, music, and renewal of relationship are shared extensively. Fiestas range from large, organized, regional events to small barangay happenings. Activities usually center around the church, and from there, proceed into the community.

Here are some festivals for October:

Zamboanga Hermosa Festival – 2nd week in October, Zamboanga City, Zamboanga del Sur, Mindanao

Zamboanga City’s biggest fiesta commemorates the apparition of the Virgin at Fort Pilar and her miraculous intervention against enemy attacks. It celebrates the Virgin Mary towards whom the people of Zamboanga hold a special devotion as a unifying cultural…

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Epsom Salt and Its Role in the Rose Garden

Rose Gardening World

epsom salt

Epsom Salt or Magnesium Sulfate is a chemical compound made up of magnesium, sulfur, and oxygen. It gets its name from the town of Epsom in Surrey, England, where it was originally discovered.

Epsom salt is a popular remedy for many ailments. People use it to ease health problems, such as muscle soreness and stress. It has many health benefits but I’m not going to talk about its health benefits here but its role in the garden.

I remember the first time I bought 5 boxes of the quart size of Epsom Salt at the drug store. People looked at me with that questioning look – “What is wrong with you?”.  I had to tell them that I used them to fertilize my roses. “Really?” I had to show them the label where it said good for plant growth.

Epsom Salt is an important part of the rose diet…

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