And then There was One

35C6061F00000578-0-image-a-7_1467192492398From the £ Daily Mail. And why, pray tell, are we dependent on a British paper for this story? In any case, Staff Sergeant David Johnathan Thatcher, died last week, leaving Lieutenant Colonel Richard ‘Dick’ Cole as the last man standing. We’ve talked about some of their traditions before, and you can read that here, as well. Here is some of the Mail’s article.

The final Doolittle Raider, who was one of 80 fliers to take off on the first bombing attack of mainland Japan following Pearl Harbor, attended the funeral of his last remaining comrade-in-arms. 

Retired Lieutenant Colonel Richard ‘Dick’ Cole, from Comfort, Texas, is now the last of the brave airmen who took off from the USS Hornet on April 18, 1942. 

He stood beside his comrade, and friend retired Staff Sergeant David Johnathan Thatcher, who died in Missoula hospital in Montana last week. The 94-year-old former airman suffered a stroke before dying.

35C177B000000578-0-image-a-1_1467191620985The Doolittle Flyers were trained in the aftermath of the attack on Pearl Harbor for a top secret mission, known only to a few people. 

The men were told that the mission would be ‘extremely hazardous’ and were told at the beginning, this was the time to back out.

The audacious plan, developed by Lt Col James ‘Jimmy’ Doolittle, would see 16, B-25 bombers attack sites on mainland Japan – even though no body had managed to launch an aircraft that size from an aircraft carrier.

via Montana funeral for Doolittle Raider who helped mission on Japan following Pearl Harbor | Daily Mail Online

Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of earth,
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;
Sunward I’ve climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth
Of sun-split clouds, –and done a hundred things
You have not dreamed of –Wheeled and soared and swung
High in the sunlit silence. Hov’ring there
I’ve chased the shouting wind along, and flung
My eager craft through footless halls of air…
Up, up the long, delirious, burning blue
I’ve topped the wind-swept heights with easy grace
Where never lark or even eagle flew —
And, while with silent lifting mind I’ve trod
The high untrespassed sanctity of space,
Put out my hand, and touched the face of God.

John Gillespie Magee, Jr

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7 Responses to And then There was One

  1. Indeed RIP to this great generation as they cross the bar! My father, as several uncles who fought in that war have gone into that World of Light. In reality we all will cross that great Rubicon sooner or later, and stand before the Almighty! (Rev. 1: 17-18)

    Liked by 2 people

    • NEO says:

      Indeed we shall.

      Like

  2. the unit says:

    At least his local new sources covered his passing (and post war life) pretty well. I’m sure there were good times, but loss of a son in Vietnam in ’70 and daughter to brain cancer in ’09 were surely sad times. Other interesting information in local news. Also kinda sad the in the following link there was only one comment. Oh yeah…Dick Cole is 100 years old, nearly 101.
    http://billingsgazette.com/news/state-and-regional/montana/of-the-last-doolittle-raiders-dies-in-missoula-at/article_ccdebc67-4770-5d11-a317-08a15ae3c77d.html

    Liked by 1 person

    • NEO says:

      Yep, they done good. That is sad, but what do you say, other than “Hand Salute”.

      Liked by 1 person

      • the unit says:

        Yes sir, for sure. I googled “Hand Salute” meaning. Oh-uh…it’s done with right (weapon hand). Can’t be PC much longer. Discrimination against all lefties you know and glorifying weapons. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        • NEO says:

          🙂

          Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: My Article Read (7-2-2016) – My Daily Musing

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