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for the Veterans – Military Appreciation Month

Martha Cothren with her class

This is a contribution from my brother for the veterans!  There is a lesson here that the students of Little Rock High School will never forget.  I would presume also that most students would never have given this a thought……

In September of 2005, on the first day of school, Martha Cothren, a History teacher at Robinson High School in Little Rock , did something not to be forgotten. On the first day of school, with the permission of the school superintendent, the principal and the building supervisor, she removed all of the desks in her classroom. When the first period kids entered the room they discovered that there were no desks.

‘Ms. Cothren, where are our desks?’

 She replied, ‘You can’t have a desk until you tell me how you earn the right to sit at a desk.’ 

 They thought, ‘Well, maybe it’s our grades.’ ‘No,’ she said.

 ‘Maybe it’s our behavior.’ She told them, ‘No, it’s not even your behavior.’

Martha Cothren

 And so, they came and went, the first period, second period, third period. Still no desks in the classroom. Kids called their parents to tell them what was happening and by early afternoon television news crews had started gathering at the school to report about this crazy teacher who had taken all the desks out of her room.

 The final period of the day came and as the puzzled students found seats on the floor of the desk-less classroom. Martha Cothren said, ‘Throughout the day no one has been able to tell me just what he or she has done to earn the right to sit at the desks that are ordinarily found in this classroom. Now I am going to tell you.’

 At this point, Martha Cothren went over to the door of her classroom and opened it. Twenty-seven (27) U.S. Veterans, all in uniform, walked into that classroom, each one carrying a school desk. The Vets began

Martha Cothren with veterans

placing the school desks in rows, and then they would walk over and stand alongside the wall. By the time the last soldier had set the final desk in place those kids started to understand, perhaps for the first time in their lives, just how the right to sit at those desks had been earned.

 Martha said, ‘You didn’t earn the right to sit at these desks. These heroes did it for you. They placed the desks here for you. They went halfway around the world, giving up their education and interrupting their careers and families so you could have the freedom you have. Now, it’s up to you to sit in them. It is your responsibility to learn, to be good students, to be good citizens. They paid the price so that you could have the freedom to get an education. Don’t ever forget it.’ 

 

By the way, this is a true story. And this teacher was awarded the Veterans of Foreign Wars Teacher of the Year for the State of Arkansas in 2006. She is the daughter of a WWII POW.

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Military Humor – 

INCOMING !!

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Farewell Salutes – 

Verdun Affleck – Timaru, NZ; RNZ Army # 8383, WWII, 20th NZ Btn., driver

Tommy Haynes – Abanda, AL; US Navy, WWII, Sea Bees

Joseph Hillman Jr. – Rock Run, GA; US Army Air Corps, WWII, Korea & Vietnam, Engineers (Ret. 30 Years)

Ralph Iossa – Madison, NJ; US Army Air Corps, WWII, PTO, Sgt., 11th Airborne Division

Adolph Kiefer – Chicago, IL; US Navy, WWII, [Olympian swimmer]

Ralph Pierman – Shawnee, OK; US Navy, WWII, Carpenter 1st Mate, LST-471, 3 Bronze Stars

Wilburn Ross – Whitley City, KY; US Army, WWII, ETO, MSgt. (Ret.), Purple Heart, Medal of Honor

Kenji Tashiro – CA; US Army, WWII, ETO,  MSgt., 442 RCT / Korea & Vietnam

Leo Thorsness – Walnut Grove, MN; US Air Force, Vietnam, POW, Medal of Honor

Julius Younger – NYC, NY; US Army, WWII, Manhattan Project

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Current Home Front News

WW II Towers at Gordons Pond

WW II Towers at Gordons Pond

For over 70 years, a series of towers has stood on the shore of the Delaware coast. The towers were used in World War II to help defend the U.S. from enemy ships; crews kept a watch on the ocean and would have alerted the Army at Fort Miles had the enemy ever been spotted.

Three of the towers are going to be refurbished in a joint project between the Delaware Seashore Preservation Foundation, Fort Miles Historical Association, and the Delaware State Parks.

“We want to restore the towers internally and externally so that people can enjoy the history of the towers and see the vistas from the top,” said Ernie Felici, the chairman of the Delaware Seashore Preservation Foundation.

The three towers are all located along Route 1. Tower 1 is on Fenwick Island. Tower 2 is in Bethany. The third tower is just south of Dewey Beach.

“Right now, we are focusing on Tower 3,” said Felici. “We want to be able to open it up to the general public. The location is perfect.”

This tower is sitting at Fenwick Island, Indian River, DE. There are 11 towers in all.

This tower is sitting at Fenwick Island, Indian River, DE.
There are 11 towers in all.

The site of Tower 3 already has a beach house with a public restroom and parking. According to Felici:

“Our overall goal, however, is to open the area to weddings and events, like with the Indian River Life Saving Station, but right now we are just focused on the restoration. Once that is finished then we will focus on the other activities. The major cost is the stairway system and the internal parts of the tower. We need to secure the stairway for the weather.”

The engineering costs to restore the tower will be the most expensive. The reconstruction of the concrete exterior is a minor cost.

“We have done a preliminary engineering study and we had positive results,” said Felici. “Right now, they are doing a drainage study because, through the years, sand has accumulated at the base.

The groups are currently seeking funds and grants to help in the effort. Felici says that the fundraising efforts are going well.

For the past two years, the Delaware Coastal Preservation Foundation has been named a beneficiary of the Coastal Delaware Running Festival. The Festival is a qualifying event for the Boston Marathon.

The three towers are included in the Fort Miles Historical Association. There is hope that raising interest in the towers will increase interest in the fort and the history of the region during World War II.

From War History online.

Click on images to enlarge.

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U.S. Air Force Day – 1 August 19Air Force Song

 

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In the Denver Area – 

History Camp, Colorado

History Camp, Colorado

Madison Jonas, editor and researcher will represent the IHRA (International Historical Research Associates) at the History Camp to discuss General Walker’s disappearance of 5 January 1943.  Check HERE for further details or the IHRA web site.

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In the Ohio Area –  header-logo

Anne T. Bell would like everyone to know about a re-enactment of the amphibious landings at D-Day on this 19-20 August.  For further information, Please check out the official site.

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Military Humor – via the Reader’s Digest – 

Welcome to basic training.

Welcome to basic training.

INCOMING !!

INCOMING !!

 

 

 

 

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Farewell Salutes –

William Almon – St. Louis, MO; US Army Air Corps, WWII, West Point, 11th Airborne Signal Corps

Earl Bosse – Ada, OH; US Navy, WWIImemorialday4

George Davies – Manukau, NZ; RNZ Air Force # NZ427262, WWII, ETO, 75th Sq/RAF Bomber Command, POW

Donald Knudsen – Hopkins, MI; US Army, WWII

Donald Lamb – LeGrand, IA; US Army, 11th Airborne

Claire Poisson – Lowell, MA; WWII, Brooklyn Navy Yard

Denis Sheils – brn: IRE/Philadelphia, PA; US Army, WWII, Korea & Vietnam, Lt. Col. (Ret.)

Richard Sonnenfeld – Oklahoma City, OK; US Army, WWII, Bomb disposal unit

Peter Tomaino – Utica, NY; US Army, WWII, ETO

Ronald Williams – Sydney, AUS; RA Navy # 33579, Korea, Petty Officer (Ret.)

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