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Godman Army Airfield

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Godman Army Airfield
Godman AAF Kentucky - 29 Mar 1998-USGS.jpg
USGS aerial image, 29 March 1998
Summary
Airport type Military
Owner United States Army
Location Fort Knox, Kentucky
Elevation AMSL 756 ft / 230 m
Coordinates 37°54′25″N 085°58′20″W / 37.90694°N 85.97222°W / 37.90694; -85.97222
Map
Godman Army Airfield is located in Kentucky
Godman Army Airfield
Godman Army Airfield
Runways
Direction Length Surface
ft m
5/23 1,900 579 Asphalt
9/27 4,999 1,524 PEM
15/33 5,253 1,601 Asphalt
18/36 5,585 1,702 Asphalt

Godman Army Airfield (IATA: FTK, ICAO: KFTK, FAA LID: FTK) is a military airport located on the Fort Knox United States Army post in Hardin County, Kentucky, United States. It has four runways and is used entirely by the United States Army Aviation Branch.

YouTube Encyclopedic

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  • Captain Jerry Yellin - October 25th, 2017

Transcription

in 1936 we lived on Bond Street in Hillside New Jersey and I played baseball and football and roller skated and played basketball with the kids in the in the neighborhood and my mother says she wanted me to become vomits food and there's four or five blocks away on Maple Avenue there was an Orthodox synagogue and I protested but she won and two or three days after I started training in the synagogue my house was covered with swastikas completely covered on the side of my house with swastikas at night because I was Jewish and I became a person who didn't have any friends anymore the guys I played ball with was they saw me coming they walk across the street and I was identified as a Jewish man so a Jewish young man on December 7th 1941 I was I had a scholarship to college I was gonna be a doctor I didn't have any money for food or housing or clothing or books so I postponed entrance into college with permission from the College for the fall semester from the fall semester of 1941 to the spring semester 1942 and I was working in a steel mill in Harrison New Jersey crucible steel making thirty seven millimeter shot for Great Britain and on December 7th at 11 or 12 o'clock I woke up I went down a corner of maple and Grumman Avenue in Newark and to buy the newspaper and everybody's around the lake the radio listening to the attack on Pearl Harbor December 7th 1941 and I made up my mind at that moment that I was going to fly fighter planes against the Japanese so I went to the armory a few days later in Newark and I got the papers and the guy who gave me the papers said are you smart I says why don't we have to be smart he says you have to have two years of college in order why in the in the airport or you have to pass an equivalent exam on my 18th birthday February 15 1942 I've talked to my parents and made them signed the papers and I was inducted into the service in August of 1942 at Fort Dix New Jersey the three months I learned how to wear a uniform learned what it meant learned how to drill and then went to Mitchell field in Long Island and was assigned to go to Nashville Tennessee with all the other cadets to take the test to find out whether we're gonna come become pilots bammed ears or navigators in the United States Army Air Corps I could have chosen any one but I wanted to fly I was sent to Santa Ana California for pre-flight training and then on February 22nd one week into my 19th year I soloed at Thunderbird field and a Stearman Scott Weaver's here who was an F 30 an f-16 pilot he's an American Airlines pilot who was the president of Thunder Thunderbird field Association and on November 10th it's the 100th year of the Thunderbird field in Phoenix Arizona and we're gonna be are going to be there so one week into my 19th year I soloed and I came back to I went to Tucson for a basic training came back to Luke field in Phoenix and was ready to graduate in August of 1943 in the class of 43 8 and 10 days I didn't tell you this but when I took the mental exam I passed by flunked a physical I had 20:30 vision in one eye and the doctor said go home you know a lot of carrots stay in a dark room don't read anything and come back and take the eye test again my mother came home from work she works at the draft board in Newark and I asked her to bring me a copy of the chart and she did and I memorized it went back and passed the exam I so in August of 1943 ten days before graduation I had to take the final sixth floor which was the number of the physical and I flunked the eye test my eyes were the same but they changed the chart and dr. Lee was a Chinese doctor and he said you're gonna fly is so close to graduation will you're gonna fly transports not fighter planes I had already had ten hours in a p40 the operational aircraft of the day and I said I'm a fighter pilot he said you're not a fighter pilot you're gonna fly transports I said I'm a fighter pilot he says you're gonna fly what I tell you to fly I said who's can change that he said the Commandant of Cadets and I said kaha do you get to see him he said you go through a chain of command what does it mean chain of command asked me first so I said sir I want to see that Commandant of Cadets and I'm 19 years old standing in front of a full colonel Eagle colonel and this is what can I do for you and I said sir I got 10 hours in a p40 20:30 vision in one eye and they want to make me of Transport Pilot but I'm a fighter pilot and he without blinking and I say anybody that's got that has the guts to come to see me you're a fighter pilot when I graduated my class 43 eights and the last 28 of our class from our through Z Zuniga Roseberry through Zuniga was sent to the 78th Fighter Squadron the Bushmaster it's hundredth anniversary is in February they were formed in 1918 the 78th Fighter Squadron and they're going to have a meeting for the hundredth in Las Vegas in February if I'm here I'm going they've asked me to speak so we went 28 guys to the 78th Fighter Squadron and 27 of those guys roomed with other fighter pilots and I was a Jewish guy and they knew that and I roomed with Marvin Kern and Phil Janoski two Jewish guys who were the Intelligence Division of the 78th Fighter Squadron. I was separated because of my religion I was not accepted as a fighter pilot until I flew and like the Tuskegee Airmen the black guys who had to be three times as good just to be even I had to be three times as good there was a guy by the name of Jim tap in Hawaii who was a captain when I met him as a second lieutenant and I flew on his wing one day he called me to his flight line p40 he said get on my wing and don't get off because if you get off my wing you'll regret it for the rest of your life he pulled streamers which meant that he was using g-forces so that the air the humid air was streaming off the wingtips and my airplane in formation was about to stall and I stayed on his wing we did everything you could do in an airplane over a destroyer and then we landed and he said you know where you were I said yes sir I was on your wing and he started laughing said we just did an Air Show for President Roosevelt who was coming to Hawaii to meet with Admiral King and MacArthur and all the big shots to plan the rest of the war Jim tap was the go-to pilot forever in the 78th Fighter Squadron and I was a go-to wingman whenever he needed something special and he was my mentor it was also the first ace flying land-based fighter planes over Japan he got four on April 7th 1945 and got one on April 12 so he was the first five plane ace in the Pacific Theater who flew land-based airplanes we went from T 40s in Hawaii to p-47s and then in December of 1944 we flew our airplanes p-51s - for Thailand in Pearl Harbor they were landed they were loaded onto a jeep carrier the Citgo Bay and we started out three or four days out to sea we were called Enola briefing and we were shown a relief map of a small island called Iwo Jima that the Marines were going to invade in February they invaded on February 19 1945 Iwo Jima is eight square miles of land and there were 90,000 soldiers fighting on Iwo Jima 67,000 American marines 23,000 Japanese and there were 28 thousand people killed on Iwo Jima 21,000 Japanese and nearly 7,000 American and Marines you've gone to the movies and they emulate the sights and they emulate the sounds but you can never ever emulate the smell of 28,000 bodies rotting in the Sun it just never goes away I flew with a 78 19 missions over Japan the first one on April 7 1945 16 in between 17 and between and was strafing airfields on August 6 over Japan near Japan near Tokyo and we came back to Iwo Jima and I vibed from Brooklyn film our jumped on my wing and he said we dropped one bomb wiped out a whole city I said what are you drinking what are you smoking I want some he said what's true we thought the war was over and then Hiroshima on August 9th the second bomb was dropped and we knew it was over there were five guys that I flew with killed in in crashes and accidents in Hawaii in the 78th Fighter Squadron and ten guys had been killed up until August 13th when we were called to a briefing ten of my buddies were killed in combat over Japan on August 13th we were called into a briefing room and we were told that we were going to fly a mission strafing airfields on August 14th and someone asked Jim tapped now the CEO of the 78 why are we going to expand again the war's over and he said well the Japanese didn't say Japanese he said the Japs are negotiating but there's no response and we have to keep him on us but they're gonna broadcast the codeword of Utah and we'll probably abort the mission we'll probably never go my then assigned wingman 19-year old Phil Schlumberger another Jewish guy was my assigned wingman for the next day's mission and he leaned over to me and he said captain if we go on that mission I'm not coming home and I said what are you talking about he says that's the feeling I have I went to top told him what Schaumburg told me and tapp said Jerry you can't ask doc Lewis our flight surgeon to intercede slam Berg himself will have to go to see doc Lewis if he wants to get off the mission and I told us the film he said no way I'm going on a mission on the morning of August 14th he and I stood together in front of my airplane and I said Jess get on my wing and don't get off we're going to abort the mission we'll never come back we carried 210 gallon wing tanks flew three and a half hours to where we would have to drop the wing tanks nobody heard the code word Utah we dropped our tanks we went in and we were strafing airfields I don't remember what city it was near strafing airfields doing everything we could to shoot up the ground we were getting shot at and we needed 90 gallons of fuel to get back to you Jim from Japan somebody in the squadron called 90 gallons the whole squadron left to fly towards the ocean to reach a b-29 that we navigated up with that would navigate us back because we only had a radio and a compass we couldn't do any navigation and fish Lumbergh was on my wing until I led the flight into weather when I came out into clear weather I flew into heavy weather and when I came out he was gone there was no radio contact there was no visual contact and when we landed on Iwo Jima on August 14th 1945 we found out that when we started to strength the war had already been over for three hours so the war started in Europe when Hitler killing Jewish people and it ended with two Jewish guys flying the last combat mission one came home and one was killed I had his wings and I had his medals and I had his lieutenant bars and he lived with his family in Brooklyn New York and in December when I was discharged I took all a lot to Brooklyn his mother really didn't want to see me but his sister said he was there were ten children in the family he had a younger brother Michael who didn't want to meet me and didn't meet me but four or five of the sisters and the mother met me I gave them the fill stuff and told him what kind of a pilot was what kind of a man he was and how he died and I was leaving and his mother said to me captain it should have you been you who work who was killed not my son Phillip I hope you never sleep a night in your life like I can't sleep and I sat shaking on the porch for an hour - I couldn't get in a car drive back to New Jersey and for 30 years 30 years I couldn't sleep at night I spoke to the 16 guys every night I thought about suicide every day I couldn't hold a job I met my wife on a blind date with Friday 1949 she lives in Forest Hills and I drove in from New Jersey in our wake Good Friday 1949 March or April we got engaged in May and married in October October 22nd 1949 and I was damaged goods we moved a lot 1965 I was asked to go to Israel to play in the Maccabi Games I was a golfer well-known golfer New Jersey scratch golfer that's what I did for a living I played golf and gamble so I went to Israel 1965 I was the father of four sons 6 to 16 and while we were there I decided that I wouldn't want my children to fight a war in Vietnam that was happening just beginning and I said to Helen we're gonna move to Israel in 1966 I emigrated I went to Israel with my four sons we were there for six or seven months and I came home from work one day and she was gone she was almost dead in a closet with all the pills bottles of pills all over we had a resuscitator she lived and when she got well enough we went to a lot to two of us and I said to her I made a commitment to you for marriage you know I'll keep that commitment but if you ever do this again I'm gonna break it so she had a very hard life because of me and I never realized that she passed away in June of 2019 of 2015 and it's pretty lonely now at 93 to be alone after 65 years of marriage we came back to America we moved to California because I was the consultants of the Bank of California Wells Fargo a Bank of America in the real estate divisions of the rei t-- days the eighties and one day I got a call from the banks to have a meeting with them they had a co invested in a real estate trust in San Francisco and they said we want you to go to Japan to see if you get money from the Mitsui bank for our REI T and I looked at the guy like he's crazy you know to my mind Japan was not a place the Japanese were not human beings I saw the atrocities of war on Iwo Jima young dead Marines with their penises cut off as stuck with our mouths and their faces bashed in to take the gold teeth out of their heads and I said I can't go I'm too busy and I came home that night and I told Helene that I turned down a trip to Japan and very quietly she looked at me and pointed her finger at me she said Jerry not once have you ever asked me if I wanted to go to Japan so in October of 1948 III I'm in Japan and what I saw and what I experienced the culture the people the scenery the food just blew me away they were cultured human beings and I realized I'd realized that and the last night that we were there we were in Kyoto she looked at me and said you know Robert would love Japan Robert was a senior of San Diego State University let's give him a trip to Japan for our graduation program I agreed I could do it I came home I said Rob we're gonna give you a trip overseas for your graduation you got a one percent chance to go if you go to Europe and you got a 99 percent chance if you go to Japan you don't go to Japan their uncle and he went to Japan in 1984 for six weeks didn't know what he wanted to do with the rest of his life so he signed a contract in 1984 to teach English in Japan for one year it's now 2017 he hasn't come back yet he's still in Japan in 1987 he called me on the phone he said dad I'd like you to come to Japan you paid the airfare and I'll take care of everything else while you're in Japan so Halina and I went to Japan in 1987 and on the last we met a young lady at his apartment he gave us told us where the key was we went to his apartment beautiful young Japanese lady walked in she was very familiar with the apartment made us tea and we sat on the floor drinking a cup of tea and I looked at her and I said was your father in the war and he said she said yes I said what does he do she says we don't know he never mentioned one word all of our lives we don't know what he did and then the last night that we were in Japan he told Robert told me told us kalenna died that he wanted to marry to Cockell and I saw the faces of the 16 guys that I flew with who do or killed and I had the presence of mind to ask him what is her family say and he said they won't meet me I sort of felt relieved that he wasn't going to marry a Japanese lady but seven years seven months later she was the fourth with three older brothers Robert was the fourth of three older brothers two of the older brothers in the father taro yamakawa met my son seven months after March of 1987 and the two boys the two brothers grills my son mercilessly about his ability to stay in Japan to work in Japan to make a living in Japan and made him promise out loud that if the wedding took place he never ever would move their sister away from her parents or away from Japan and he agreed to that so he sent us a note that he was going to get married in March of 1988 March 7th was a day in 1945 43 years to the that I landed on Iwo Jima fighting the Japanese and on March 5th two days shy of 43 years my son and full Japanese garb married this Japanese woman I asked them how did it happen what happened he said mister yamakawa asked me five questions how old is your father 63 was he in the war yes what did he do he was a pilot what did he fly p-51s where over Japan and that ended that first meeting in 1987 and he went home and said to his wife make the wedding and she went ballistic for 43 years you've been telling me you never fired a bullet against the enemy you didn't die for the Emperor like all of 500 guys there were kamikaze pilots like you because you were sent to China and you want our daughter to marry this full bearded guy Jean from America and he said yes she said why he said any man that could fly a p-51 against the Japanese and live must be a brave man and I want the blood of that man to flow through the veins of our grandchildren so Robert got married and I have three Japanese grandchildren I have six grandchildren one of them is here tonight Hana with her husband Jay she lives in Washington three American grandchildren and three Japanese grandchildren there's no difference in my love for any of them I love them both all of them six of them exactly the same maybe I love Hannah a little bit more of course she's here and he spent a lot of time together she was married this year in Washington she and I both live in Washington so you know I came home and I couldn't function and in in 1975 my wife saw Mahesh ma ma my ice Mari yoga on television about on toddler dog what was his name Michael Douglas young on Michael Tucker I said on a TV huh yeah anyways she saw and she said she's gonna learn ten Transcendental Meditation TN and in August of 1975 I learnt a.m. and I got my life back gave me life today there are 20 22 veterans from Iraq Afghanistan who commit suicide our federal government bless it if you can I can't spends eight billion dollars a month for antipsychotic and antidepressant drugs that and that cost is going to escalate and it's going to go on for six or 700 months for the current veterans and both those drugs are addictive and do very little good they move do more harm than good and they any veteran from any workin lunch Transcendental Meditation for $700 if they can't afford it they can get a scholarship to learn TIA and that brought me here in 1988 after the wedding I felt that I had to tell for the first time my story and I wrote a book called of war and weddings that got published seven years later in 1995 it's hard to get a book published but Don Brown wrote this book he's this is a 13th book and this is pretty good story I'm in it a bit and other people who read it not quite as much as me and I'm humbled by the fact that I can speak to people about my experiences because I really am representing 16 million of us who put a uniform on and served America in World War two and then there were eight million young women in the 40s early 40s who went to work as Rosie the riveters that's 24 million Americans out of a population of 150 million who served their country when you put a uniform on whether you're a policeman or you're a fireman where you're in the military Army Navy Marines Coast Guard you pledged to give your life to your buddies in the line of duty and to strangers if necessary in the line of duty people don't recognize that we have a military today of possibly 3 million people out of 300 million people 1 percent maybe less but I pledge that my buddies pledged that and the policemen and firemen and military of today pledged the same thing it's an honorary moment for me to think back to my service to my country in a time of war and certainly is an honorary moment for me to sit here tonight and speak to you I'll answer any questions I don't have much more to say my life has been an experience beyond my ability to comprehend it I'm going to be speaking at Thunderbird field Scott Weaver is going to have me for the hundreds anniversary I'm going to speak at Luke field they're trying to get me up in an f-16 which is a fighter plane jet Scott wants me to do nine GS and get a 9g pin I can't do that my body won't stand for that 90 in an airplane he doesn't know it but I'm not going to have it happen I'm going to be at Annapolis speaking to the Midshipmen in January in February I'm going to be at the hundreds anniversary of the bushmasters in Las Vegas and in March I'm going to get a national award pretty much underserved from wings club org which was started in 1942 and have given the award of aviation achievement to the likes of John Glenn and Chuck Yeager or and President Bush and the guy who started virgin airways and I'm not in that pay grade but I'm scheduled to get that at the Yale Club on March 29th this year I really live my life like my banker looks at my checking account yesterday's a canceled check it's gone can't get that back again today's money in the bank I can spend today and Scott Weaver always a promissory note that he said he's going to pay tomorrow and I don't know if he's going to pay it and I don't know if I'm gonna get tomorrow so today and tonight is all I've got and I enjoyed being here very much thank you I fly in the back of a p-51 owned by a guy in Arlington by the name of Andrew McCarran he flies with a guy by the name of Jim Beasley and Stuart Walton who was Sam Walton grandson and a guy with a name of lejos who was killed last month in a p-51 and they send me a golf bag with the name of the airplane that I flew Dorie are and four letters across the bottom that I didn't know what they meant and those letters are B a and F I can't tell you what it is but it's badass motherfucker said it out loud for the first time sir p-51 P all of our missions were seven hours and 50 minutes to 8 hours and 10 minutes fuel was what kept us up there and we needed 90 gallons of fuel to fly the three and a half four hours coming back we cut it back to 20 or 22 gallons an hour on the first mission I landed with six gallons of fuel left Jim VandeHei our CEO his airplane quit on the runway Bob rosemary my classmate bailed out on the approach we had Close Encounters of a bad kind because of fuel Fred white on oil April 12th was Jim taps wingman flying in close when tap was shooting down his fifth airplane and obviously the coolant in the people in Fred White's airplane the coolant line very thin line if you lose your coolant you lose your engine can't fly and it was leaking coolant tap led him over a submarine pretty close to Japan and Fred white bailed out on on April 11th and the chute never opened tap followed him down into the water that was the first guy killed in combat killed by combat Cora was a big deal yes ma'am well I have had contact with my wingman's family Michael Swanberg changed his name to Michael Sloan and Michael Sloan has a daughter by the name of Melanie who married a dutch architect by the name of Johansson and Scarlett Johansson is Melanie Sloan's daughter would have been Phil Schaumburg great and nice had you you live I gotta let phone call from Jim tap on a Thanksgiving maybe 30 years ago that he received a letter from Melanie Sloan asking about Phil Schaumburg he said you know him better than anybody in our squadron can you please meet the family so I met Melanie Sloan and we became friends she has scarlet and a twin brother Hunter a daughter by the name of an SN another son by the name of every Adrian and their dear friends of mine I spent Christmas in New York City speaking for the David Lynch foundation 5 or 6 years ago and they came and met me the young people came in met me and we talked for three or four hours and we're very good friends with the family they appreciate hearing about their grandfather's brother as a guy hearing in Washington by the name of George O'Connor Georgia O'Connor's father had a brother Jack O'Connor who was a navigator on a b-29 and was killed in a mid-air collision of two b-29s on June 20th 1945 and a Japanese man was put in jail for burying the bodies or whatever body pieces he could find and he erected a monument on top of Mount she's a hot day and she's Oakland Japan in memory of those men who were killed and I went to the services there in 2005 and there was no names of the Americans so we created a monument on top of men she's a hottie with the names of the 23 Americans and I've been there several times and then wrote a book about it called the blocking canteen because in the wreckage of the b-29s he found a can and print with the left hand print of the man who was caught who is holding it when I was incinerated in 1945 the life has been an adventure for me an incredible adventure and he has a question sir you know anti-semitism is here today the way it was racial problems are here today the way it was we don't feel it as much I was young it was very difficult when I was young it was very difficult in the military they asked me to stay in become a major my friend mark Freeman major mark Freeman is here he's in the United States Army maybe in the Pentagon in the Pentagon in the Pentagon doing intelligence things getting his doctorate and I don't know what he feels but I didn't stay in the military because I was Jewish and I wasn't accepting you know that was my life I loved flying airplane yes I didn't know about the Nazis in 1941 on Poe we didn't know maybe Roosevelt note maybe some people know but there was no knowledge of what they did and I didn't want to fight against Germany they didn't attack me as a matter of fact if it wasn't for Hitler's doing what he did and declaring war on the United States my feeling is today even we would never have declared war on Germany we'd have never gone to war against Germany but Hitler declared war on America eight days after Pearl Harbor that was the big mistake of World War one for what what - for him that's the best service of a mall in my opinion because they bond together you're never ever in your life an ex-marine you are a marine for life and I'm an honorary marine I go to Iwo Jima my granddaughter I'm in 2015 the Department of the defense video made a video of me that you can see on YouTube Jerry Yellin on Iwo Jima and Google bring up a five minute video and in that video in 2015 I said I'm 91 the trip was too much I'm not going back again I'm not coming this is my last time on Iwo Jima and then I saw my granddaughter Sarah who was 19 then and I asked him which he liked to go to Iwo Jima in 2016 she said yes so I went to Iwo Jima in 2016 I said you want to go back yes so I went back in 2017 you want to go again yes so I'm scheduled to go in 2018 in March I don't know if I'm gonna be here tomorrow let her own March but I'm booked to speak until June of next year 2018 they're taking a big chance yes ma'am Oh excuse me this guy was ahead of you yes barry goldwater no but I bought my uniforms from his grandfather store in Phoenix Arizona he never said he was Jewish but he came from a Jewish family and I don't think Barry Goldwater was a fighter pilot instructor didn't know that yeah no I didn't know that but I never met him didn't have much use for the Republicans then and I don't have much use for now I know it's a political statement but we're on the verge of a war that's going to destroy the Earth's ability to sustain life it's called nuclear warfare and our president North Korea are outta hand and throat and if it happens he's committed suicide for the earth that's where it is today well no the guy's not too stable who's the president United States either well neither was anybody else they're politicians we can have a discussion about that there was I was told you don't think speak about three things sex politics and religion I'm speaking about all three of sex I forgot about I don't remember it well anything else yes oh it's a lady yes well it's similar to the experience that I had there's a story here about a rabbi who was on the ship that went down before the four people by we had we had in March of 1945 we had a rabbi and had a service for Passover and that then the Zenoss was a Jewish dentist modernist the group dentist and they taught enough they had Passover wine and matzah on iwo jima in 1945 it was quite an experience to enter we were on the ground that's how you feel glad to get back we didn't hear the noise we had cups like this we're gonna have the big Alma's they were canvas almost with earphones and we didn't bother didn't bother us the noise the noise of a p-47 in order of a p40 we're just as great if not greater all the fighter planes were like that you a pilot what do you fly well that's pretty good airplane yeah yes sir I flew for the New Jersey I can't think of the civilian name of the group for many years the way Civil Air Patrol I flew with the Civil Air Patrol Cessnas and Piper's for the Civil Air Patrol I took a job I was in New York City looking for a job and I was on a bus and that a one-star general general car who was a b-29 pilot assigned to Iwo Jima to tell us what the b-29s needed what we had to do what the b-29s were going to do and he was in the back of the car in civilian clothing so I walked up to him I said general car you don't know me but I attended a half a dozen briefings on Iwo Jima she's what are you doing I said I'm looking for a job come with me so we went to an office as big as this table on Wall Street and there was a guy on Wall Street name was all right Chuck and all right Chuck was starting an airline called transfer via an airline so I was a second pilot they hired I had about 20 hours in a c-47 which was the dc-3 and I flew as a co-pilot I took the tickets gave them the lunches loaded the luggage unloaded it talked through seven hours from Newark to Miami stayed overnight at the condado beach hotel flew to Puerto Rico had 3,000 people saying goodbye to 21 people who got on the airplane and in the back of the airplane the c-47 these they were cooking with live fires I had to go put the fires out and I lasted seven months as a co-pilot on a dc-3 it was boring I was a fighter pilot I knew the freedom of the skies I had no freedom not at all now that was my aviation career again yes well the p51 was the most maneuverable easiest on the controls the p-47 you had to be physically strong to fly the p-51 you could fly with your fingertips it's just it was remarkable in the response to what you did the Japanese had more zeroes than any other airplane they had Franks and Tony's and George's all named and we called a0 the Zeek under three under 250 miles an hour the Z could run circles in you no matter what you were doing but over 300 miles an hour the torque of that airplane because it was canvas no protection no no armor plate for the pilot was overgrown over over fueled a lot of fuel and fabric and they couldn't turn to the right over 300 miles an hour so the best tactic that we had although it didn't happen often what's to come down attack them from above and then break off to the right and they couldn't follow you they had 3-4 hours in the flume they went into combat but you have to understand that Japanese went to war in 1931 and they had old pilots and not a lot of both father spent a lot of old pilots and when we went up against them we were told as a Japanese we'll have one or two airplanes way off on the side directing the ones that are in the fight and we went after them first because they were the older pilots directing the younger palace what to do were you aware of the planning or that's the first part second part is what's your take what's your own personal tell me the difference of a thousand bombers going over Japan East one with 11 people dropping tons and tons and tons over Japan and destroying 60% of the cities or one bomber going over Japan dropping one bomb with 11 people in the bomber during the same destruction it's war the pure purpose of war is to kill your enemy the first weapon of mass destruction from my viewpoint was a caveman who discovered that he could use a rock to get something from someone else from rocks we went to knives to bows and arrows to Spears to guns to bigger guns to bombs to bigger bombs and now we have the biggest problem at all nuclear warfare you're welcome yes that's an interesting question we got 60 hours or 70 hours in three different aircraft the first aircraft was the Stearman open 220 horsepower engine with an instructor in the front and you in the back because he wanted a fluke solo you're fluid from the back seat well if you got through primary training you were sent to basic training which was a for a 200 a 450 horsepower bt 13 which we called the vaulty vibrator it was an enclosed cockpit with no retractable Lanigan if you made it through basic you went to a 650 horsepower engine called the 86 and closed cockpit retractable gear and two machine guns in each wing so you did advanced training it takes I think Scott said two and a half three years to become a fighter pilot you do a year today on simulators we didn't have simulators we had an instructor that took you up in the airplane did loops and rolls follow me through you put your hand on the throttle hand on the stick feet on the rudders you follow them through you do it you did it if he said okay you landed he got out you did it on your own front or back seat Stearman by 12 a vibrator in 86 then they put you in a p40 blindfold you have to touch every instrument every switch every control if you do that they say take off so they I took off I was at 8,000 feet when I said I better get to gear up I mean not so fast you get up there compared and you do a few turns and you figure out that you can do everything and then you say to yourself I have to learn this mother you know and you go down and you land it you just plain do it or you're not a fighter pilot a washout in the military in primary flying school if your ground loop the airplane now my I had everybody up to my initial why had five instruct five pilots to the instructor I had three pilots to the yelling another guy with Z and Zuniga so I got my flying time in first because we got more time quicker so on February 22nd to hold flight our whole squadron at Thunderbird field is there and I land and wash out I'm gone because I ground loop the airplane but I didn't ground with the airplane and my instructor saw that I didn't ground loop the airplane there's a strap that holds the steerable tailwheel together and you have to lock the strap in position so the steer worked the tail wheel doesn't move when you land and that strap broke and he saw it break and I ground loop which is the washout gone he came at me with this you know cheap don't worry don't worry don't worry he's shouting out of the cheap but I was gone in my mind I thought finished it's all over now I'm going back to thunderbird field that's the Scottsdale Airport know what else oh you know we went to Hawaii and we had to get a tour of Hawaii and they had a dive bomber in a 24 which is a true cedar and the back seat has a machine gun so they can turn the backseat facing to the rear and as soon as we got to Hawaii to where we were where we're flying through 40s they put us first in the back seat of the age 24 and took us up shoulders the island and then they started through dives and straight down and straight up they tried to get us airsick I never got airsick and I became a pilot of that 8.4 I took other guys up to get them airsick and I I don't think I succeed succeeded but there are guys that got airsick I never got airsick I flew December last year I flew the current t6 which is the 1400 horsepower engine bigger than the p40 and it lawfully in Air Force Base and I'm hoping to get in the back seat or front seat I don't know way to fight an f-16 Scott's responsible for that on November 10th I know I'm going up on our chairman but I go up in a Stearman often every September in Galesburg Illinois where the Stearman Association has an annual meeting in their 6070 Stearmans there they all want to get a chance to have me fly their airplane and then sign it I'm sort of like a legends of the Stearman pilots it today and that too was beyond my pay capacity my page scale I'm just one or sixteen guys yes sir we lost two guys that well you we could go up to 25 30,000 feet I went up to 38,000 feet in the p-47 but you had no protection from the enormous change of the atmosphere and your legs blow up your stomach blew up you know you just as a human being and we never flew in combat over 14 15,000 feet just on oxygen masks that's okay that was fine the airplane says today they can go forever we couldn't do that yes I never did stick a fighter plane never I just bailed out of one I never ran out of fuel or never had an emergency that made me touch sticker landing a couple guys did that I knew there wasn't anything that we weren't prepared to do in the training and then especially in a 78 fighter squadron they were the best of the best yes ma'am we never saw anything but I'm a relief map we carried a map a chart of our courses and the radio frequencies where we could reach a PBY that was flying that to rescue us then a destroyer and then a submarine in Japanese waters right off the coast we had radio contact with them we have five radio channels a B C D and E and we had radio tubes and when you come from high altitude down to low altitude these tubes exploded so we only had one or two radio channels to use one was for inter squadron one was for our squadron one was for emergency one was for the fields on Iwo Jima it was you know it was like me compared today like me flying a Jenny in World War one they had nothing either but we had power we had different aircraft we developed aircraft as a weapon we have the best commercial airliners but we developed aircraft as a weapon first used in World War one Rickenbacker's and those people they were the ACE they were the heroes they made me make model airplanes with balsa wood of World War one airplanes when I was eight ten twelve years old and that's what got me interested in aviation and the Spitfire our guys and Huracan guys and battle of britain that's what got me interest in aviation very few guys get their dream I said I was gonna fly Japanese fighters against the Japanese and I did that that's amazing you don't do that in the army if you want to go to Europe they sent you to the Pacific you want to go to the Pacific they send you to Europe there's there's no rhyme nor reason this is great I have to go to sleep soon yes we have no idea he went down over the ocean there's no way of knowing it was either his plane was hit he didn't say anything or he was hit you know we on an accident six eight years ago ten years ago when a famous golfer was killed they flew at fifty six thousand feet ran out of fuel and crashed you'll never know why they you know that happened but that's part of flying that's part of life it's part of combat we all know what was going to happen I knew it was gonna happen to me it was not going to happen to me I flew fearlessly identify as a Jewish man I flew as an American really it never occurred to me for religion was that any part of anything in my life then you know in 1956 when I was in grammar school every single day when I was in grammar school we saved the Lord's Prayer the Lord is my shepherd I shall not want every day in 1956 Congress outlawed the Lord's Prayer in schools in America and they added under God to the Pledge of Allegiance which I can never say because I don't know which god they're talking about you know does that Jewish God and the Catholic Godman was no God and a Buddhist God I don't believe in God I believe in nature we're all human beings we're all connected as human beings everybody in the world any man who has sperm can fertilize any woman in the world we're all exactly the same in the eyes nature we're human beings that's how I look at life today and it makes me maybe a little bit different when I connect to everybody in that way I don't look at them the people who wear crosses or mezuzahs outside we're stars of David or telling everybody what they believed and I think that that to me is wrong what they believe they should keep to themselves they shouldn't try to sell it to other people that's the way I feel I'm giving you as much as I can give you it's not much more left me and who you know I asked on Brown that question he said Jerry you did a video on iwo jima 2015 and I saw that video and you were talking about a historic event the last combat mission thrown in World War two and I wrote write books about history so he calls me in said he was gonna write the book and then he got hold of regenerates Novac this year Loring longest year from that publishing coming this publishing company and they can tell you more what Don Brown got them to publish the book and Alex tells me it's doing pretty well that's what they tell me I'm reading it now to correct the errors that Don Brown made as an author about the flying aspect just the speeds and the altitudes and the things that we did Alex doesn't know it but in the book one time it says that Mount Suribachi was 555 feet high and another part of the book it says 600 feet for the same mount doesn't work for me but it's in the book well again thank you very much eight o'clock wow that time

Contents

UFOs: Mantell Incident

The Thomas Mantell incident began at 1:20pm on 7 January 1948, when the control tower operators at Godman Army Airfield, Kentucky sighted an unidentified airborne object in the sky close to the base. Several senior officers were summoned, and the base Operations and Intelligence Officer were soon joined by the Commanding Officer, but none were able to identify the object.

At the time a flight of four P-51 fighters was on a routine training flight under the supervision of Flight Commander Captain Thomas Mantell. They were flying towards Godman Field when, at approximately 2:45pm, the control tower officer in charge ordered them to investigate the strange object. Captain Mantell acknowledged, but a short time later one of the pilots requested permission to break away as he was running low on fuel, leaving the three remaining aircraft to head in the direction of the strange object.

The next message came from one of the three remaining pilots, who said he was losing his bearings and was becoming fearful of becoming lost. He too was granted permission to break away and return, but he would be accompanied by one of the two remaining pilots, who was instructed to accompany his colleague to guide him safely back to base. The only aircraft now in pursuit of the object was that piloted by Captain Thomas Mantell.

At 15,000 feet Mantell contacted the control tower and stated that he had the object in sight and was climbing to investigate. A short time later Mantell reported that he was closing on the object but that was the last message broadcast. Mantell's aircraft crashed approximately 90 miles south of Godman Field.

The official Air Technical Information Command report on the crash stated that they were of the opinion that Captain Mantell lost consciousness due to oxygen starvation. The trimmed aircraft had continued to climb until increasing altitude caused a sufficient loss of power for it to level out. The aircraft then began to turn left due to torque and as the wing drooped, so did the nose, until it was in a tight turning spiral. The uncontrolled descent resulted in excessive speed causing the aircraft to disintegrate. It is believed that Captain Mantell never regained consciousness. This was borne out by the fact that the canopy lock was still in place after the crash, discounting any attempt to abandon the aircraft. They also stated that the UFO was in no way responsible for the crash.

See also

References

 This article incorporates public domain material from the Air Force Historical Research Agency website http://www.afhra.af.mil/.

External links

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