December 7, 2018

On this date 77 years ago Pearl Harbor was attacked and after
just 90 minutes 2,386 American servicemen died and 1,139 were
injured. Although few are left that were there that day we
cannot forget them.


Bad day

July 20, 2018

You’ve probably heard that Iowa was hit by as many as 27
tornadoes yesterday and reports of injuries and damages are
still coming in. From what we’ve heard the damages were mostly
in the central part of our state.

In Pella a Vermeer plant had major damage and some empolyees
went sent to the hospital with injuries. The plant that makes
agricultural and industrial equipment is closed to assess the

In Marshalltown around 10 people were injured and thankfully
none critically. Several buildings were damaged and clean up
will take some time. The tornado even took the top of the clock
tower off, which laded in the street.

In Bondurant it was much the same. Downed trees, damaged
houses, and clean up and repair. Other cities and other towns
were hit as well. The affected areas are asking that gawkers go
elsewhere to allow medical, law enforcement, and clean up crews
full entry.

Our hearts goes out to those impacted and prayers have been
sent. Enjoy our Friday as it will only feel like a couple hours
before the weekend is gone. Now for some coffee.
Comments are always welcome.

Sad anniversary

July 9, 2018

On July 2nd, 1994, the South Canyon fire began with a bolt of
lightning near the base of Storm King Mountain seven miles west
of Glenwood Springs, Colorado. This persistent little fire
would go on to claim the lives of 14 wildland firefighters and
the fire was also called the Storm King Fire.

By July 4th the fire had only burned 3 acres but residents of
nearby Canyon Creek Estates became concerned and it was decided
that the firefighters would start the battling the blaze the
next day.

On July 5th the firefighters started to approach the fire
which was made harder due to the terrain and began cutting
firelines to hold back the fire. That evening smokejumpers
arrive to help and all quit early because of the danger from
rocks rolling down from above.

On July 6th twenty Hotshots from Prineville, Oregon rushed to
help fight the fire. A cold front passed through the area which
increased the winds and fed the fire. By 4 pm the fire had
jumped the fireline and was now below the crew and to the west.
It raced towards the firefights fueled by the dense vegetation.

12 firefighters couldn’t outrun the fire and perished along
with 2 helltack firefighters who were also killed. The Storm
King Mountain Memorial Trail. leads visitors to the memorial to
those who died.

Those are:

Prineville Hotshots- Kathi Beck, Tamera Bickett, Scott Biecha,
Levi Brinkley, Douglas Dunbar, Terri Hagen, Bonnie Holtby, Rob
Johnson, and Jon Kelso.

Missoula Smokejumper- Don Mackey

McCall Smokejumpers- Roger Roth, Jim Thrash

Helltacks- Robert Browning, Jr., Richard Tyler

John Maclean wrote a book called ‘Fire on the Mountain: The
True Story of the South Canyon Fire. If you wish to learn more
about the fire, loss of life, and how it happened, go here.

Enjoy our Monday as it’s the only one we get this week. Now for
some coffee.
Comments are always welcome.

Camp Pendleton explosion

December 12, 2017

photo by Marine Corps.

Yesterday, during a training exercise at Camp Pendleton, 4
members of 1st Platoon, Company A, a Navy Corpsman and 9
Marines from C Company, 1st Battalion, 1st Marines were badly
burned when training went FUBAR.

All were riding in an armored amphibious vehicle when they
pulled off the road and nicked an above ground gas line. When
the treads of the vehicle hit the gray gas line it exploded.
The gas fire welded the steel treads, ate the entire roof and
right side of the vehicle, and melted weapons inside.

The explosion ruptured the vehicles gas tank which added 170
gallons of diesel fuel to the fire that took 6 hour to get
under control. 6 paramedic units, 3 brush fire engines, a
ladder truck, 5 aero-medical ambulances, and a firefighting
aircraft were on scene.

The officials who planned the exercise didn’t know that a
Marine D8T bulldozer had ruptured the same line, 30 yards away,
3 months earlier. In that instance there was no explosion and
everyone was evacuated safely.

Our condolences to the victims, their families and friends,
and others affected by this tragedy. For the whole story go to

Enjoy the rest of our Tuesday and if you could, give these
Marines and sailor a quick prayer.
Comments are always welcome.

Armistice Day storm

November 11, 2017

We’ve been told for some time now that climate change is going
to end mankind as we know it. Gloom and doom are predicted. We
seem to forget history along the way, and thus, are doomed to
repeat it. In my lifetime we’ve heard of impending ice ages and
heat waves beyond belief.

None of which came to be. These threats did manage to raise
the cost of certain things while not changing anything. We were
being manipulated then as now. Dad talks about the record
breaking heat wave in the summer of 1937, we’ll talk of another
weather event.

Veteran’s Day used to be called Armistice Day and on November
11th, 1940 a super-storm came through Iowa and other parts of
the country. Global Warming? On that November day in 1940, it
was 58 degrees at 9 am.! Parades were being held in celebration
of the holiday, hunters were in the field, and it looked to be
a picture perfect holiday.

During the local parade the bands wind instruments froze when
the temperature dropped to 33 degrees in about a half hour. The
storm hit the Pacific northwest with near hurricane force winds
and didn’t weaken as it raced east. The storm inhaled moisture
from the Gulf of Mexico and cold air from Canada to become a

The winds that hit that day were called “the winds of hell”
and it is said they reached 70 mph. And then came the blizzard.
Two trains collided, hunters died in the field, boats and
freighters sank on Lake Michigan killing 66 sailors, one million
Thanksgiving turkeys died, and Collegeville, Minnesota
saw 27 inches of snow fall.

The storm tracked from Des Moines to Eau Clair, and the
pressure dropped to around 29 inches of Mercury. When it was
over it was discovered the storm had cut a 1,000 mile wide
path through the middle of our country.

The reason a storm warning wasn’t issued was because the
Midwest headquarters of the government forecaster in Chicago
wasn’t staffed overnight to track the storm. With today’s
advanced technology we hope this couldn’t happen again.

So don’t tell us how climate change is going to cause severe
weather changes and what we have to give up to stop it. Look to
the past for the answers.

Enjoy our Veteran’s Day.
Comments are always welcome.

Not really a rant

September 7, 2017

At one point in the history of this blog I used to rant on
Thursdays. That stopped because I found it harder to get mad
enough to do so. While I’m still not mad, let’s consider this
not really a rant.

As of Monday 1.4 million acres of our great country are on
fire in 8 states to our west. Montana is the hardest hit with
over 660,000 acres aflame. To get an idea what that looks like,
see footage of a satellite feed right here.

The states currently reporting large fires are California,
Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and
Wyoming. Montana, California and Oregon have the most fire
activity. These fires are consuming more acres every day.

Of course some are blaming global climate change and all the
people with their cars. How about the media picking this up
and getting volunteers out there to help. These fires impact
the air quality of our country. Go to AirNow for the current
air quality conditions.

This is not a record setting year for fires either although
it is being compared to the fires of 1910. So, the fires aren’t
breaking any records, they are many and understaffed, and who
cares what the cause is. Wait until they’re out before you get
on your pulpit.

Even though I’m not watching big media news, I’m sure most of
this isn’t being aired and should be. And a big thank you to
the fire fighters, support crews, and volunteers who give their
time to fight these fires while sleeping in tents away from
your families. You are not paid enough.

We certainly hope those in Montana get a break and don’t have
to stay until the first good snow. Enjoy our thursday.
Comments are always welcome.

No news for me

September 5, 2017

We do live in interesting times. And it seems odd to us that
at a time when we have over 1.1 million acres of forests on
fire out west, southern Texas recovering from a hurricane,
daily shootings in Chicago that rival war zone statistics, and
a law makers who can’t make any laws, the headlines we see are
how the first lady wore a heavenly dress paired with shoes made
by the devil to religious services yesterday.

Nothing about how understaffed and overworked the wildfire
firefighters are, no solutions to end the carnage in Chicago,
and no legislator saying ‘let’s do what’s right for America’.
There is something wrong with that picture.

The National Interagency Fire Center lists 78 large incidents
across 7 states as of yesterday. These can be anything from
fires to hurricane relief and the incidents are listed on the
map below. Click on the map to enlarge it.

Chicago has had 2,587 people shot so far this year that
resulted in 480 deaths. That breaks down to one person getting
shot every 2 minutes 18 seconds and one person shot and killed
every 12 hours 21 minutes.

Here on the east coast of Iowa we lost the sun at around 3 pm
yesterday and the sky turned yellow. Later, when the moon was
able to be seen, it looked almost blood red. We were told it
was because of the smoke from the wildfires out west while the
temperature outside dropped around 15 degrees.

Until such time as the media takes its responsibility seriously
I will no longer watch any news programs. I see it as a waste
of time and think instead of being uninformed, listening to the
media would leave me misinformed.

Enjoy our first tuesday of fall. Now I need to get another
gallon of coffee in me to get ready for sunrise and todays
Comments are always welcome.