Welcome

(Contact Info: larry at larryblakeley.com)

Important Note: You will need to click this icon to download the free needed to view most of the images on this Web site - just a couple of clicks and you're "good to go." For reasons why - go here.

A listing and access link to all:
song lyrics and mp3 audio files http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/songs/ (all of which are a part of this Web site) can be accessed simply by selecting the "htm" file for the song you want;

poetry http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/poetry.htm;

quotations http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/quotations.htm; and

essays written by Larry Blakeley http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/articles/articles_larry_blakeley.htm,

all of which are used to tell the story in this Web site, can be accessed by going to each respective link set out above.

My son, Larry Blakeley http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/larryblakeley_photos_jpeg.htm manages this Web site and the following Web sites:

Larry Blakeley (Contact Info: larry at larryblakeley.com)

Leslie (Blakeley) Adkins - my granddaughter

Lori Ann Blakeley (June 20, 1985 - May 4, 2005) - my granddaughter

Evan Blakeley- my grandson

Major Roy James Blakeley (December 10, 1928 - July 22, 1965) - USAF (KIA)

When I was young my dad would say
Come on son let's go out and play

No matter how hard I try
No matter how many tears I cry
No matter how many years go by
I still can't say goodbye

- "I Still Can't Say Goodbye," Performer: Chet Atkins

MP3 audio file/lyrics http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/songs/still_cant_say_goodbye.htm

For a larger image click on the photograph.

Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/quotations.htm

"The nature of people demands that most of them be engaged in the most frivolous possible activities - like making money."

"The ignorance of how to use new knowledge stockpiles exponentially."

Herbert Marshall McLuhan (1911 - 1980) http://www.marshallmcluhan.com

Post Date: November 26, 2004 at 8:30 AM CST; 1430 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/articles/articles_larry_blakeley.htm

[Please note that I have used "metaphors" in many of these articles/stories. This method of conveying meaning through comparisons enables me to place these metaphors in your mind for contemplation and thought, and subsequent meanings influenced predominately by your personal perceptions of life, as acquired by your experiences in your life.]

Post Date: November 25, 2004 at 10:55 AM CST; 1655 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/index.htm

I had a stack of 12 other cylinders of what I thought was audio, but discovered when I took them in on November 19, 2004 that 8 of them were, in fact, video. The work order copy is here. http://www.royblakeley.name/uedit_video_work_order20041119.djvu

Post Date: November 22, 2004 at 9:15 AM CST; 1515 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/george.htm

My sister, Karen holding Jim and Miko Dore's (neighbors) son here http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/karen_miko_son196401.djvu (January, 1964). Here is a photograph of Jim and Miko's wedding in Yokohama in 1961 http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/miko_jim_dore_wedding_yokohama196111.djvu Here is a a photograph of them in our living room at George Air Force Base in January, 1964. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/miko_jim_dore196401.djvu

Post Date: November 19, 2004 at 4:05 PM CST; 2205 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/vietnam_history.htm

For Vietnam War Bibliography accummulated by The Richard Nixon Library & Birthplace Web site go here. http://www.nixonfoundation.org/Research_Center/Vietnam/VIETNAM_BIBLIOGRAPHY.shtml

Post Date: November 19, 2004 at 10:50 AM CST; 1650 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/major_roy_james_blakeley2.htm

Roy was always "testing me" in trying to shake me when I was his wingman or in dog fighting. I was always able to hold my own and he treated me with dignity and respect even though I was so junior in rank and was still learning new things from him.

You might be interested to know that after my tour at Da Nang, I went back to Udorn Thailand after only 8 months home. I was then an "experienced Captain" so I went on the advanced party before the rest of the squadron deployed..

On 30 September 1966 I became the first pilot in the Air Force to fly 100 combat missions over North VietNam. This was later recognized with a brass, engraved tray given to me by Tony LeVier, the Lockheed Test Pilot who was the first person to fly the F-104. I still have it displayed in my study. Of course it has gathered dust just like I have over these many years.

- "Email Exchange with Harold Alston," November 17, 2004

Directory: http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/articles/

File Name: email_exchange_harold_alston20041117

Post Date: November 18, 2004 at 1:45 PM CST; 1945 GMT

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Why am I doing this? One of many reasons - "because I can."

"You see things and say 'Why?' but I dream things that never were, and I say 'Why not?" - George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950) http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/quotations.htm

"I love songs about horses, railroads, damnation, home, salvation, death, pride, humor, piety, rebellion, patriotishm, larceny, determination, tragedy, rowdiness, heartbreak and love. And Mother. And God." - Johnny Cash http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/quotations.htm

Post Date: November 18, 2004 at 8:50 AM CST; 1450 GMT

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Added to the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/george.htm

Here is a photograph of me http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/larry_backyard_george196507.djvu and my youngest sister, Sharon here with our cowboy hats on. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/sharon_backyard_george196507.djvu

Post Date: November 17, 2004 at 11:55 PM CST; November 18, 2004 at 0555 GMT

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Added to the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/bergstrom_559th_fighter_squadron/bergstrom.htm

Here is a photograph of my mother holding me when I was about 6 or 7 weeks old right before my father had to leave for Japan. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/bergstrom_559th_fighter_squadron/mother_baby_larry2.djvu We moved back in with my mother's parents until he returned. We met my father at the flight line at Bergstrom Air Force Base after he returned from Japan and stayed in an efficiency apartment until our house was built. We stayed in an efficiency apartment until our house was built. It was upstairs and one room with a kitchen and bath and according to my mother regarding their struggles with me:

"You cried because mother, daddy and I had been rocking you and we didn't have one (a rocking chair). Finally Roy was giving up and was going to buy a rocking chair and he happened to find out about pacifiers so he brought one home and it worked like a charm. When we moved into the house it seemed so big compared to our one-room apartment where you could see us all the time. You would crawl from one room to another and I could hear you on the hardware and tile floors going splat, splat as you crawled. Then you realized you were lost and you would cry for us to rescue you. It was so funny. Love, Mother"

"Well now on a summer night in a dusky room

Come a little piece of the Lord's undying light

Crying like he swallowed the fiery moon

In his mother's arms it was all the beauty I could take

Like the missing words to some prayer that I could never make

In a world so hard and dirty so fouled and confused

Searching for a little bit of God's mercy

I found living proof ..."

- "Living Proof," Bruce Springsteen, Album: Lucky Town, Columbia Records (1992) MP3 audio file/lyrics at http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/songs/living_proof.htm

Post Date: November 17, 2004 at 11:25 PM CST; November 18, 2004 at 0525 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/george.htm

We also stopped by Whitharral, Texas to visit my father's mother, Violet - on U.S. Highway 385 - 10 miles north of Levelland in north central Hockley County - here we are in front of the Whitharral sign on the highway. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/mother_violet_larry_karen_sharon_whitharral_sign.djvu

Post Date: November 17, 2004 at 12:45 PM CST; 1845 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/major_roy_james_blakeley.htm

And, of course - if you are a parent - many of us selfishly feel the emotions about our own young, as expressed so truthfully in the song, "Souls of the Departed," Bruce Springsteen MP3 audio file/lyrics at http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/songs/souls_departed_springsteen.htm

Post Date: November 17, 2004 at 12:00 PM CST; 1800 GMT

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Yesterday - November 16, 2004 - I carried a box of 11 - 8mm video film - 3" in spindle diameter and 50' in length - to a company in the Dallas area - U Edit Video http://www.ueditvideo.com - here http://www.royblakeley.name/uedit_video_work_order20041116.djvu is a copy of the work order and here http://www.royblakeley.name/directory_uedit_video_services_overview.djvu is a copy of U Edit Video's services overview with prices for those interested in pulling out their own analog videos from their "boxes stored up high in the closet" - for transferring this analog film to DVD (digital) format for viewing - and, determining whether there is anything on them for posting on this Web site.

On the box enclosing one of these rolls of video film my father has written the following: "Vietnam 1965 - Valuable Film: Do Not Destroy." Nobody has viewed the Vietnam film - so I really have no idea what is on it - but will let you know as soon as I know.

Post Date: November 17, 2004 at 11:35 AM CST; 1735 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/george.htm

Here is a photograph of my mother at home in Rotan with her sister's (Valeries) son, Jim Owen looking on. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/mother_jim_owen1954.djvu

Post Date: November 17, 2004 at 9:45 AM CST; 1545 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/george.htm

In April, 1962 my father was assigned to the 436th Tactical Fighter Squadron, 479th Tactical Fighter Wing located at George Air Force Base, Victorville, California. There he trained to fly the F-104 Starfighter.

We arrived by shipliner from England after a week voyage at the harbor of New York City - picked up Taurus station wagon - loaded up - and headed west across America for a site seeing tour.

In fact, my father's preferred destinations were located in Arizona, California, or Nevada - Luke, Williams and Nellis, specifically. He was not given a definitive destination until "in route." Here is a photograph of my parents standing next to the Taurus at my mother's parents' ( John and Edna Ashton) place on Higway 70 - just 3 miles north of Roby. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/mother_dad_roby1962.djvu

Post Date: November 17, 2004 at 9:00 AM CST; 1500 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/major_roy_james_blakeley.htm

Jim Owen - son of Valerie (Ashton) Owen - and John McCuistion throwing dirt on each other as children here http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/jim_owen_john_mccuistion.djvu and my mother (still in high school) holding hands with each of them right after that here. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/mother_jim_john.djvu

This new union of husband and wife - cutting the cake here http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/cutting_cake19530614.djvu (the interesting thing about this photograph is that you can see the Junior bridesmaid, Pat Riley, smiling in the mirror on the wall) leaving the chapel here http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/dad_mother_leaving_chapel.djvu - Mr. and Mrs. Roy J. Blakeley - left in this car and set up life together at 108A Hardy Street, Bryan, Texas. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/directory_bryan_mother_dad.djvu

A photograph of my father pouring a cup of coffee here. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/dad_coffee_pot.djvu

A photograph of my mother sticking her tongue out at my father here. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/mother_tongue.djvu

A photograph of my mother and father on the streets of Rotan here. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/mother_dad_rotan1954.djvu

Here is a photograph of my mother holding me up on a bed while I am looking at my father's photograph taken upon graduating from flight training school. You can see a portrait of Doris (Ashton) McCuistion on the wall. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/mother_baby_larry_dad_portrait.djvu

Post Date: November 17, 2004 at 1:50 AM CST; 0750 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/england_480th_fighter_squadron/england.htm

My Christmas cowboy outfit here. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/england_480th_fighter_squadron/larry_cowboy195812.djvu

Post Date: November 17, 2004 at 12:35 AM CST; 0635 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/major_roy_james_blakeley.htm

Winnie Combs had a son, Joe Kenneth (here on a wagon pulled by two goats with his cousin, Gwendolyn Combs http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/joe_gwendolyn_combs1927.djvu) that was accidently killed by his cousin with a 22 caliber rifle - a brief story of the circumstances as told to me by my mother in an email - here. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/email_from_mother_joe_kenneth_combs20041115.htm

This tragedy reminds me of an incident that occurred in my early life that nearly ended up the same way - except it would have been a drowning. The story about this near-tragedy is here. http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/articles/day_let_guard_down.htm

Post Date: November 16, 2004 at 11:05 PM CST; November 17, 2004 at 0505 GMT

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Added - or rather changed - the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/john_lewis_edna_ashton.htm

John Lewis Ashton, my grandfather and my grandmother here (affectionately called MeMa by all the grandchildren), both of whom I loved very much. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/directory_john_edna_ashton.djvu

Post Date: November 15, 2004 at 10:55 AM CST; 1655 GMT

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"Now everyone dreams of a love lasting and true

But you and I know what this world can do

So let's make our steps clear that the other may see

And I'll wait for you

If I should fall behind

Wait for me"

- "If I Should Fall Behind," Bruce Springsteen, Album: Lucky Town, Columbia (1992) MP3 audio file/lyrics at http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/songs/fall_behind_springsteen1992.htm

Post Date: November 15, 2004 at 8:45 AM CST; 1445 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/major_roy_james_blakeley.htm

Here is a photograph of my mother at the drugstore in front of a mirror - taken by Wayne McCuistion. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/mother_wayne_drugstore.djvu

Here is a photograph of my mother, Doris, and Wayne over 50 years later. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/mother_wayne_doris.djvu

Wayne McCuistion and my mother's sister, Doris Ashton were married on September 7, 1946 at the Baptist Church Parsonage in Roby, Texas. They have two children, John McCuistion, Irving, Texas and Luona McCuistion, Gun Barrel City, Texas. Here is a portrait photograph of them taken in the summer of 1996 in celebration of their Golden wedding anniversary (50 years of marriage). http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/wayne_doris1996.djvu

Wayne McCuistion (November 1, 1928 - January 7, 2008) is another common, ordinary American man http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/articles/common_ordinary_american_man_abstract.htm that has led his life under the principles and values of manhood contained in this Web site - a man that lifted himself up from a pretty tough childhood and made good of himself - a kind, gentle man. He grew up in Stamford, Texas. And, he's also a pretty good 42 player and bird hunter, himself. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/wayne_granddad_don_42_197312.djvu

Post Date: November 15, 2004 at 6:55 AM CST; 1255 GMT

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What did this "country boy" know within days of setting foot on Vietnam soil that many Americans did not figure out until years later?

"These people are a poor tired looking lot. Wish there was some way we could get out of this & get (save) some face." - Roy James Blakeley, Major USAF, jet fighter pilot Lockheed F-104C Starfighter, 436th Tactical Fighter Squadron, George Air Force Base, California, July 5, 1965 letter. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/letter_rblakeley19650705.htm

What else did he know? His days, or some other pilot in his squadron, were quite possibly numbered - considering the unrealistic use of the F-104 Starfighter for low-level strafing engagements - engagements being directed by the "higher command."

How do I know of these things? He told about these things in the many letters that he wrote from Vietnam - all of which are a part of this story - letters that I read for the first time 40 years later. Possibly, that is the reason he wrote so many during his 19 days in Vietnam - a record of his thoughts, his love, and his experience there.

Post Date: November 15, 2004 at 6:10 AM CST; 1210 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/major_roy_james_blakeley.htm

I was born at Rotan, Texas and delivered by Dr. Johnson at the Callan Hospital. Shortly after I was born my father received orders for TDY ("temporary duty") to Japan. He left for Japan when I was around 6 weeks old and was there for about 3 months. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/dad_japan1954.djvu

In terms of this story what is the most significant result of my father's trip to Japan? He learned about cutting edge (at that time) video and audio equipment.

Upon his return my parents built a house in Austin. Their realtor was Darrell Hopkins and my parents built a house right across the street from the Hopkins family at 1502 Ridgemont Drive http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/bergstrom_559th_fighter_squadron/austin_home19551210.djvu . They became good friends and stayed in touch over the years. In fact, they came out to George Air Force Base to visit in the summer of 1964. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/directory_hopkins_blakeleys_196407.djvu

Post Date: November 15, 2004 at 5:30 AM CST; 1130 GMT

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Added this to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/major_roy_james_blakeley.htm

When my mother met my father she was still a child of only 15 years old - barely past this stage in life of riding her bicycle, but a story of "true love" that ensued for the next 15 years, or so. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/mother_bike.djvu

When you know this story you will know what true love is all about - between one man and one woman; a love that many dream about, but only read about - and you will know what it means to be a man.

My father expressed that love for my mother - and his family - even during those last few days of his life in July, 1965. We were his life - to know him is to know us. And - even to this day - my mother has never remarried.

Post Date: November 15, 2004 at 5:20 AM CST; 1120 GMT

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Added this to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/lakenheath_492nd_fighter_squadron/lakenheath.htm

A rare moment caught on film - the photographer and his children - me, Dad, and my sisters, Karen and Sharon. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/lakenheath_492nd_fighter_squadron/dad_larry_karen_sharon_lakenheath.djvu This photograph was taken by my mother

Post Date: November 15, 2004 at 4:40 AM CST (yes, I wake up early - often); 1040 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/lakenheath_492nd_fighter_squadron/lakenheath.htm

And, a photograph of me taken in February, 1961 with my bike and black jacket here. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/lakenheath_492nd_fighter_squadron/larry_bike196102.djvu

Post Date: November 14, 2004 at 10:55 PM CST; November 15, 2004 at 0455 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/major_roy_james_blakeley.htm

Rotan is where my father met my mother. My grandmother Ashton (affectionately called MeMa by the grandchildren) worked at George Riley's Drugstore. Here is a photograph of my mother MeMa, and Doris (Ashton) McCuistion http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/mother_mema_doris.djvu and here is a photograph of MeMa, her sister, Winnie, and niece, Barbara. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/mema_winnie_barbara_drugstore.djvu It was a combination drugstore and cafe where the old timers came in for coffee and ice tea and the younger group came in for sodas and malts. It was located on the main street of Rotan. My mother worked there after school and in the summers. Here is a photograph of my mother at the drugstore in front of a mirror - taken by Wayne McCuistion. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/mother_wayne_drugstore.djvu

This new union of husband and wife - Mr. and Mrs. Roy J. Blakeley - left in this car and set up life together at 108A Hardy Street, Bryan, Texas. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/directory_bryan_mother_dad.djvu

My mother and father photographed with Violet Blakeley here. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/directory_bryan_violet.djvu

I was born at Rotan, Texas and delivered by Dr. Johnson at the Callan Hospital. Shortly after I was born my father received orders for TDY ("temporary duty") to Japan. He left for Japan when I was around 6 weeks old and was there for about 3 months. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/dad_japan1954.djvu

Post Date: November 14, 2004 at 10:31 CST; November 15, 2004 at 0400 GMT

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"There were lots of things I wanted to make up to you.

When you returned from Vietnam,

But you didn't."

"The Things You Didn't Do," - - "The Things You Didn't Do," poem appearing in the book, "Living, Loving and Learning," Leo Buscaglia, Ph.D., Author: a female student who wished to remain anonymous. http://www.royblakeley.name/but_you_didnt.htm

Post Date: November 14, 2004 at 4:20 PM CST; 2220 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/lakenheath_492nd_fighter_squadron/lakenheath.htm

My father was sent to Nellis Air Force Base in January, 1959 for 3 months before being sent from Nellis to Stead Air Force Base for a 17-day Advanced Survival Training Course. This was the second time he had completed Stead's Advanced Survival Training Course - the first being in 1955.

While my father was at Nellis Air Force Base we stayed in an apartment. Here is a photo post card http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/lakenheath_492nd_fighter_squadron/directory_card_mother_vegas19590105.djvu at the Nevada Club of Las Vegas post marked January 5, 1959 to her parents with the following written on the back:

"Dear Mother & Daddy,

I lost 50 cents here on the roulette wheel ha - big time gambler. My hair is so flat on top. I look like one of the local vagrants or something. We are fine. We bought some new clothes yesterday - Violet quit her job & left last night - couldn't stay away from Abilene - Love, Johnnye"

Post Date: November 14, 2004 at 2:00 PM CST; 2000 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/lakenheath_492nd_fighter_squadron/lakenheath.htm

Here is a photograph of my father - taken by him using a tripod. The following is what he wrote on the back:

"Chaumont France November 10, 1959

Taken by me in my room. The small picture is Larry when he was 4 mos old. I am sitting on my stereo Tape Recorder." http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/lakenheath_492nd_fighter_squadron/directory_dad_chaumont_france19591110.djvu

Post Date: November 14, 2004 at 5:50 AM CST; 1150 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/george.htm

A Mother's Day card I made for my mother here. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/directory_card_mothers_day_larry_bee.djvu

Post Date: November 14, 2004 at 5:00 AM CST; 1100 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/major_roy_james_blakeley.htm

Here is a copy of the wedding invitation card. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/wedding_invitation_card19530614.djvu

The wedding guests signed here http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/directory_wedding_guests19530614.djvu; the wedding party signed here http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/wedding_party_19530614.djvu; and the hostesses of the reception signed here. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/wedding_gifts_hostesses19530614_6.djvu

"O fortunate,

O happy day,

http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/wedding_happy_day19530614.djvu

when a new household finds its place, among the myriad homes of earth

like a new star just sprung to birth ..."

- "The Hanging of the Crane,"
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow http://www.worldwideschool.org/library/books/lit/poetry/TheCompletePoeticalWorksofHenryWadsworthLongfellow/chap18.html

And, to help them get started in this new life's journey the kind folks of Fisher County, Texas sent with them many gifts. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/directory_wedding_gifts_19530614.djvu

Post Date: November 13, 2004 at 8:15 AM CST; 1415 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/index.htm

There is no question in my mind that promptly after my father took this photograph of me and put his camera down - we saluted each other.

How do I know this? Because he knew what the regulations for "Civvies" were at the time (page 27, "Air Force Times," January 15, 1958). http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/saluting_civvies19580115.djvu

How do I know that he knew these regulations? Because on page 17 of the same paper, "Air Force Times," in an article titled, "4310 New Captains On Latest Hike List," he circled his name in red pencil. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/captain_hike_list19530115.djvu

Besides - after you know my father, too - you will agree that he would have been proud to salute another officer in uniform.

Post Date: November 13, 2004 at 7:10 AM CST; 1310 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/major_roy_james_blakeley.htm

A Gift Tea honoring my mother was held in the home of Mr. and Mrs. S. S. Campbell on June 4, 1953 with the hostesses being:

Mrs. T. O. SoRelle; Mrs. Wayland Gray; Mrs. Hilton Cross; Mrs. Eugene Gladson; Mrs. Joe Henry; Mrs. L. D. Bridges; Mrs. C. F. Bickerstaff; Mrs. Leonard McCombs; Patsy Newton; Ouida Fillingim; Mrs. Billy Waddell; Mrs. W. C. Denton; Mrs. James Green; Mrs. Ruby Helms; and Mrs. Hugh Huckaby. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/gift_tea_19530604.djvu

Post Date: November 12, 2004 at 6:40 PM CST; November 13, 2004 at 0045 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/index.htm

But, ultimately our most valuable lessons in life are learned from men of great character. Do you have to be a mental giant to have an everlasting positive effect on a younger person? http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/directory_transcript_dad_arkansas.djvu No, not at all - but, you have to be a man that "walks the walk of the talk with goodness of soul for others in your heart." My father was that kind of man.

"We deny our Saviour by refusing to be a testimony to the lost; our very lives can be the greatest sermon of all." - "Lives Do Not Reflect New Life," Valarie Owen, Sermon of the Week http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/articles/new_life_valarie_owen.htm

Post Date: November 12, 2004 at 5:40 PM CST; 2340 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/george.htm

Somehow, during all of this my father was able to locate a valentine's day card and mailed it to my mother with a postmark date of February 11, 1965 from Fairbanks, Alaska. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/directory_card_valentine_rblakeley19650211.djvu Not only was this card beautiful, but was quite unique in that the front of the card was in two sections - with the white section being elevated on four foam blocks raising it above the base underlay of red and gold. I have tried to scan this card so that you can see some of the 3-D characteristics of the card - hopefully, you will feel the depth of the heart here - it is right there in the center of this story and is evident behind the front facade.

Post Date: November 12, 2004 at 4:00 PM CST; 2200 GMT

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Added the following to Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/george.htm

On the 26th day of May, 1962 my father received a certificate from the Tactical Air Command of a "Deep Sea Survival Training" course. This was a 40-hour course that he completed at Langley Air Force Base, Virginia. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/deep_sea_survival_certificate19620526.djvu

Post Date: November 12, 2004 at 2:15 PM CST; 2015 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/major_roy_james_blakeley.htm

Here is a copy of a letter from my mother to my father with a postal date of September 22, 1950 addressed to Roy Blakeley, Greagson Hall, Box 102, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, Arkansas. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/letter_jblakeley_19500922.htm

Post Date: November 12, 2004 at 11:45 AM CST; 1745 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/major_roy_james_blakeley.htm

Here is a copy of a letter from my mother to my father with a postal date of October 23, 1952 addressed to 2nd Lt. Roy J. Blakeley, 3308 Pilot Training Squadron, Class 53-G, Box 514, Stallings Air Base, Kinston, North Carolina.

http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/letter_jblakeley_19521023.htm

Post Date: November 12, 2004 at 11:45 AM CST; 1745 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/major_roy_james_blakeley.htm

Here is a Mother's Day card from Valarie Owen to my mother mailed from Irving, Texas to our home at Roby, Texas in May, 1969 http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/directory_card_mothers_day_val_owen_196905.djvu. Both of my mother's sisters (as well as my mother) live in Irving and see each other often. My mother's relationship with her sister's is very important to her.

Post Date: November 12, 2004 at 8:50 AM CST; 1450 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/george.htm

Here are two F-104 Starfighters and two F-4 Phantoms lined up on the runway http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/2_f104_f4_196407.djvu in a diagonal orientation in order for my father to take this picture from the cockpit of his F-104 (most probably with his canopy open since the photograph is relatively clear).

And, while he was out flying - my mother continued with their joint project of making F-104 Starfighter shadowboxes for each of the squadron pilots. My father did all the woodwork and together they did the finishing work. Mine is sitting right above me - they really are pretty cool. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/shadowbox_f104_mother196407.djvu

As my mother is well aware - and her curlers in the above photograph attest to - you really never knew when my father was going to put you permanently on film.

Post Date: November 12, 2004 at 7:10 AM CST; 1310 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/lakenheath_492nd_fighter_squadron/lakenheath.htm

This Web page contains is a copy of each of the 27 pages of a report dated February 1, 1962 called "Officers Roster - 48th Tactical Fighter Wing and Ancillary Units. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/lakenheath_492nd_fighter_squadron/48thTFW_19620201.htm

Post Date: November 12, 2004 at 5:30 AM CST; 1130 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/ bergstrom_559th_fighter_squadron/bergstrom.htm

The first Mother's Day card that I gave to my mother. My signatures are the scribbling with red crayon - my father signed my name - Larry. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/bergstrom_559th_fighter_squadron/directory_card_mother_first_larry.djvu

Post Date: November 11, 2004 at 2:15 CST; 2015 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/major_roy_james_blakeley.htm

At this directory http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/ are copies of the original Marriage Rites:

File Name: directory_marriage_rites19530614.djvu

File Name: marriage_rites19530614.txt

Post Date: November 11, 2004 at 11:30 AM CST; 1730 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/george.htm

40 years ago from today's date of November 11, 2004, one of my childhood heroes, Roy Rogers, signed a 25-year lease of the Apple Valley Inn with the owner, Newton T. Bass - President of Apple Building and Development Company. The inn's name was changed to the "Roy Rogers' Apple Valley Inn." http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/directory_roy_rogers_newspaper19641111.djvu

If I was not riding my bike, skateboarding, swimming, or playing "king of the hill" outdoors on summer break, or Saturdays - I was at the picture show watching Roy Rogers at the matinee.

So, I was really excited when my mother told me he was going to be close to us. She took me out there to meet him - and, when he came out into the hallway to say "hello" - he scared me. He had some sort of device holding his neck and head upright - perpendicular to the ground.

This article confirms this injury, but does not say what happened to him. It is my recollection that he injured himself in a skiing accident.

Trigger (Senior) did not make the trip to Apple Valley - he went on to "horse heaven" - I suppose, but Trigger (Junior) did end up at the stables - so, I had my mother take me out to pet him. I was a little taken aback because Trigger (Senior) was not given a proper burial - instead he was stuffed and put on display at the entrance to the inn.

Here is a photo of me with Dale Evans' horse. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/evans_dale_horse.djvu

And, I do remember going to the stables and a friend named George coming along. We feed the horses sugar cubes and apparently - instead of cupping the sugar cube in the palm of his hand, George must have tried to feed one of the horses with the sugar cube held with his fingers - and he got bit - and bit pretty good from the screaming he was making.

Post Date: November 11, 2004 at 9:25 AM CST; 1525 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/bergstrom_559th_fighter_squadron/bergstrom.htm

My mother completed a 9 hour course called the "Strategic Air Command Dependents Assistance Orientation Course" while my father was stationed at Bergstrom. Her Certificate of Training is dated 24 May 1957 and arrived in the mail to our home off-base at 1502 Ridgemont, Austin, Texas (no zip code needed in those days - I assume). http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/bergstrom_559th_fighter_squadron/directory_certificate_mother19570524.djvu

Post Date: November 11, 2004 at 8:30 AM CST; 1430 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/larry_blakeley_cyberspace.htm

A Mother's Day card to my mother. http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/directory_card_mother_larry1965.djvu

Posted: November 11, 2004 at 6:30 AM CST; 1230 GMT

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Added the following to http://www.royblakeley.name/index.htm

- "Who Done That," Larry Blakeley (an update from my mother of some more facts surrounding this incident here) http://www.royblakeley.name/bergstrom_559th_fighter_squadron/email_from_mother_who_done_that20041110.htm

Post Date: November 11, 2004 at 6:15 AM CST; 1215 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/george.htm

Operation Diamond Lil

What do I know at this point (November 10, 2004) about this operation?

- it was designated "top secret" for reasons that I can only assume by looking at the following material:

DD Form 1351 - Travel Voucher http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/directory_DD1351_travel_voucher19650223.djvu - my father's copy of his itinerary reflecting that he departed George Air Force Base on January 21, 1965 at 1900 local standard time by government bus for a 1-1/2 hour trip to March Air Force Base. The next morning he boarded a government aircraft at 0800 for a flight to Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska; and several more stops later ended up at his ultimate destination - Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska on January 22, 1965 at 2130 local standard time.

My father was at Elmendorf Air Force Base until departing for Eielson Air Force Base on January 27, 1965 at 1730 local standard time for his next extended destination of Eielson Air Force Base - arriving there by government bus on the same day at 2115 local standard time.

He was conducting "secret" flights.

How do I know that? My father has written in red the word - "secret" - on each of his flight plans. These secret flights originated out of Eielson; were characterized by a magnetic heading of west towards the Russian border; then back east to Eielson. It seems there must have been two routes that were flown over this period of time while at Eielson.

He was slowly down along the U.S.- Russia Convention Line of 1867 and flying very close to USSR's Big Diomede Island at an altitude and groundspeed that enabled him to "see" what was going on - especially over this island (and, possibly there was some interest of what was happening, if anything, on the U.S.'s Little Diomede Island).

I can't imagine that there weren't some Russian Mig's on the western side of this fine line separating the U.S. and Russian borders.

The routes of these flights are substantiated by the following documents:

- Eielson Route #1 http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/directory_eielson_flight_plan_route1.djvu

- Eielson Route #2 http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/directory_eielson_flight_plan_route2.djvu

Here is a copy of the charts my father used with check points marked in black dots http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/directory_eielson_chart.djvu

The Travel Voucher reflects that my father departed Eielson Air Force Base on February 18, 1965 at 1000 local standard time and arrived by F-104 Starfighter aircraft at George Air Force Base on the same day at 1730 local standard time (a 7-1/2 hour flight).

Here is a photo of my mother and my sisters at the steps of his F-104 Starfighter upon his return to the parking ramp at George. I am in the car waiting with the mumps. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/rblakeley_alaska_return.djv

Post Date: November 10, 2004 at 5:15 PM CST; 2315 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page (home page) http://www.royblakeley.name/index.htm

Or, if you prefer something a little more light-hearted then just go here for an overview of what I thought I was on September 10, 1963. However, this won't tell you much because as I look it over after over 41 years (and counting) there are only two of these five items that still holds true today (November 10, 2004). I will leave it up to you to determine which two. http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/about_myself_lblakeley19630910.djvu

Post Date: November 10, 2004 at 1:50 PM CST; 1950 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/george.htm

Here is a drawing of mine http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/drawing_space_capsule_entry_lblakeley.djvu of Alan B. Shepard, Jr.'s http://www.jsc.nasa.gov/Bios/htmlbios/shepard-alan.html, ride in project Mercury's Freedom 7 MR-3 (18) - a craft that on May 5, 1961, headed for its ultimate splash-down at a location in the Atlantic Ocean with the coordinates of: 75deg 53min longitude, 27deg 13.7min latitude http://www-pao.ksc.nasa.gov/kscpao/history/mercury/mr-3/mr-3.htm

Sites covering the F-104 Starfighter (my drawing of some "Starfighters" here http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/drawing_starfighters1966.djvu)

Post Date: November 10, 2004 at 12:15 PM CST; 1815 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/major_roy_james_blakeley2.htm

The pilot sitting at the table with my father is 1st Lt. Harold R. Alston and this is a history of how he was identified:

.".. I was flying Roy's wing on his fatal combat mission. I also was the first pilot in the squadron to visit with your mother and Roy's parents about the mission when I returned to George AFB after our tour at Da Nang. You should know, that I enjoyed Roy as my Flight Commander and had great respect for him. I deeply share your loss. - Harold Alston, Lt Col, USAF, Retired" - http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/email_exchange_harold_alston_bob_irwin.htm

Post Date: November 10, 2004 at 9:50 AM CST; 1650 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/articles/why_learn.htm

.... this potential, knowledge; that still requires a brain on the other end that is capable of reading, writing http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/articles/directory_letter_lblakeley19651102.djvu, and arithmetic http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/arithmetic_lblakeley19630918.djvu or at the minimum, an understanding of these simple common denominators of the tools of communication?

Post Date: November 10, 2004 at 9:40 AM CST; 1540 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/george.htm

A drawing of "The Boxer" http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/boxer_larry1964.djvu and of "Leaving Las Vegas" http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/drawing_leaving_vegas_lblakeley1964.djvu were both drawn by me at the age of 10.

How do I know we were leaving Las Vegas (since there's no indication from the features of the automobile)? Because when we would leave George for the trip to visit my father's parents - we arrived there late in the evening. And, when we would head back to George - we returned early - the sun is shining in the drawing.

Post Date: November 10, 2004 at 9:25 AM CST; 1525 GMT

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Added the directory http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james/blakeley/military_personnel_records and scanned into that folder my father's Military Personnel Records.

Added the following to the homepage:

.".... and my mother - "Windows of Heaven," Johnnye (Ashton) Blakeley, August 15, 1991 http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/johnnye_blakeley19910815.htm)..."

Post Date: November 9, 2004 at 1:15 PM CST; 1915 GMT

"A man that is not willing to reveal his heart, his soul, where he came from (i.e. father, mother, grandfather's and their values), where he is now (i.e. 'goodness' at the center of his soul), and where he intends to go (i.e. his struggles with the demons of his spirit and what he is doing to combat these enemies of his) is either dead already or a damn liar with 'something' (i.e. his spirit) to hide from others. If you don't know who I am after reading 'all' of this Web site, then you need to go back through it, again. If you still don't understand - then by all means get with me and we will go over it together."

Post Date: November 7, 2004 at 7:45 AM CST; 1345 GMT

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"A Tip for Reading the Articles/Stories"

On most occasions I have saved both an "htm" and "txt" version of the same article/story - especially, if it is somewhat long. I did this so that you could do this:

Place your cursor on the file name; then confirm that the end of the file name has the extension ."txt;" if so, the depress the right mouse button and select "save" - and save the file to your desktop.

If you are using Windows go to Start>All Programs>Accessories>Notepad - open the Notepad application then File>Open; browse to your desktop and select the Article/Story for printing. By printing out the document you can read it at your leisure away from the confines of the computer station.

If you are using Linux, then the odds are you already know what to do.

Post Date: November 6, 2004 at 2:10 PM CST; 2010 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/index.htm

I separated this Web site off from my companion Web site at http://www.larryblakeley.com, but "What am I doing?" http://www.royblakeley.name/what_doing.htm

Post Date: November 6, 2004 at 7:45 AM CST; 1345 GMT

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I have not even begun to put together the photos (and video - plus audio) that my father took. He was a photographer enthusiast - and, there are even videos (I believe) taken from the cockpit of the F-100 & F-104.

I started this project - as mentioned on the Web site homepage - with scanning those photos that I felt like would be sufficient to complement the basic text (which is only rudimentary at this time - except for the stories posted, such as, "What was he thinking about?") of the story of his life (and, my mother's together). They are there (along with the text) to provide a basic chronological orientation for the reader - but, will evolve over time to a full-blown story about a man and woman's life - from a "value/moral/principled" orientation of a common ordinary American man (as told about in "A Message to the Common, Ordinary American Man").

Gradually, this Web site will evolve into a "streaming video/audio" presentation.

and further down in the Web page I added the following:

The stories contained in this Web site stands as a muniment of what I am trying to describe to others what we had; what we lost; and what we need back; here in America, from the the American man.

What about the American woman? I don't know much about that - other than they are choosing certain men, having children with them, being abandoned by them, or killed by them. So, from that perspective there is much to be learned by women from this Web site. And, that is the only contribution that I can legitimately offer to the American woman.

I just hope and pray that my daughters never become a victim of him http://www.royblakeley.name/larry_blakeley/articles/hacking_be_man20041029.htm. And, I offer up my son to America based on the principles of manhood covered throughout this Web site.

Post Date: November 6, 2004 at 5:45 AM CST; 1145 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/major_roy_james_blakeley2.htm

The pilot sitting at the table with my father is 1st Lt. Harold R. Alston. I believe that same photograph may have been taken by Captain Walter B. Harris.

Post Date: November 6, 2004 at 5:30 AM CST; 1130 GMT

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Added the following to the Web page http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/george.htm

Articles of Interest covering the F-104 Starfighter:

- "The Joy of High Tech," Part 2: Starfighter, Rodford Edmiston

Directory: http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/george_436th_fighter_squadron/

File Name: starfighter_rodford_edmiston (3,828 words)

Post Date: November 5, 2004 at 7:00 PM CST; November 6, 2004 at 0100 GMT

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I added the following to the Web page at http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/flight_to_clarkAFB.htm

Several days after scanning the front part of my father's notepad I pulled it back out of the "scanned documents" drawer. I remember taking a "speed reading" course years ago (after taking it I sent my son, Evan and daughter, Lori to the same course - they weren't thrilled, but went along with it anyway) where we were instructed to always look at the back of the book to review information about the author.

So, I pulled my father's notepad from the drawer - and, here are the images of the entries he made in the back of the notepad! http://www.royblakeley.name/roy_james_blakeley/directory_roy_blakeley_notebook_inside_back1965.djvu

One page of notes was particularly perplexing - he had entered the following names and dates:

Blakeley - 18 Apr 58

Gale - 30 Nov 59

Harris - 15 Feb 61

Shassetz - 2 Feb 64

Olson - 14 Jan 65

Alston - 19 Oct 61

Tribble - 18 Sept 64

My father's Military Personnel Records file shows the date he logged with his name to be the date that my father was temporarily promoted to the rank of Captain - to be followed up with a permanent rank date of September 24, 1959.

As to the other date's and the reasons he wrote them down is still a mystery.

Post Date: November 5, 2004 at 5:35 PM CST; 2335 GMT

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I added the following note to the abstract of this article:

(Note: For AOL users -bless your hearts, AOL is taking such advantage of so many folks - just plug into the internet, then go to either the internet browsers, Internet Explorer, Firefox (http://www.mozilla.org), and/or you can even use Opera http://www.opera.com) - or, in fact, all of them - even at one time! If one browser freezes up with me I just open up one of the others.

In any event, instructions on how to download the plug-in viewer for DjVu is located at http://www.royblakeley.name/index.htm)

Post Date: November 5, 2004 at 5:30 AM CST; 1130 GMT