Tuesday, July 12, 2016


We got back from another road trip last night.  This one was for the 71st USS Indianapolis Survivor reunion which had a decidedly different flavor this year.

Since last years reunion 8 of the 31 survivors have passed away with 10 being able to make it to Indianapolis.  It seemed to have put some weight on the preceding as meetings had a lot of "legacy" talk on what happens after the survivors are gone.  It has become a large family and we want to keep the memory alive.  

We saw the final cut of an award winning documentary which will be shown probably in Madison in a few months with special screenings.  It has won a couple awards at film fest's for Best Director (who we have gottin to know pretty well). 

Then there is the motion picture which had a weird vibe.  Seems the company asked for the Survivors blessing but the Survivor Origination said - let's see the script first but they said NOPE - so the Survivor Org said screw you, no blessing,  So the company went to the Navy and the Navy said the same thing.  Well, they got the script and said NOPE - here are 2 single spaced pages of changes and THEN we will give you are blessing.  

SO - an Admiral says, IF the changes are not in the movie they will give a very swift and loud media campaign to correct things.  Here is the thing.    

We are still learning facts on what happened in those 5 days at sea and there have always been some "secrets", some things that have made me perk up when someone mentioned something and then that avenue of thought is quickly squelched.  

For instance - every year someone brings up how there were instances of sailors going crazy and killing fellow sailors over water and other hallucinations.  It's like the survivors are asked about the horrors and sharks but there is always this "other horrible things" that are never talked about. 

Yet this year the "sailor killing sailor" thing was mentioned 3 times by various insiders and THEN the Navy said there are things in the movie the survivors will not like.  I think there is more to this then is being let on OR - the movie company went over the top on this.  We shall see.  There was even mention of finding out WHO took the Indianapolis off "the board" which led to the huge Navy cover-up. 

The Indy was on a schedule and suppose to come into port on a certain day.  Somebody took their name off the board like they had already arrived so everybody thought they were in port so nobody even considered looking for them.   

So the survivors were rescued but the Navy did not tell the family's for over a month that the ship was lost and there were only 317 survivors and then they waited until the very day the war ended to send death notices to teh families and to have the sinking on a back page of the papers.  THE DAY THE WAR ENDED and they got the death telegrams - SERIOUSLY? 

The the whole Capt McVay suicide in the early 60s is so sad.  Since they used him as a scapegoat and court-martialed for not zig zagging (even though he was told not too)  America thought he was inept (even with 10 battle stars) so for 24 years the Captains wife always got the mail and took out the really really REALLY cruel hate letters from families. She passed away and he started getting all the hate mail from families at Christmas. 

This got to him and one day with a toy sailor in one hand and his service revolver in the other took his own life a couple years after the 1st reunion in 1960. 

SO - it will be interesting.  It's a double edged sword. One one had it's a movie - not a historical documentary.  It's filmed on a battleship and not a heavy cruiser and I'm sure there are other liberties.
Sort of like Public Enemies.  Classic car people had all sorts of issues with the cars but the public didn't care.  Here on one hand you want the story to get out but on the other hand you want it accurate.

The search for the final resting place for the Indy continues - National Geographic along with Robert Ballard of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute searched for the Indy last year and believe they are in a 30 square mile area but the problem is it sank in the Mariana Trench which is the deepest part of the ocean.  They plan to go out again next year.

There was a new documentary that starred Mel (SURPRISE!!!).  It was about the kapok life vests which were made of out of cottonwood seeds which were harvested by children during the war.  To our total surprise Mel was one of the two interviewers. He did this in secret.

I'm not sure who can see this "live" Facebook recording but it you can it's interesting.  The first 8 minutes are sideways but I correct it before the show started.



Sunday after the memorial we drove to Springfield to get some things finished with moms estate.  I tell ya - GET THINGS IN ORDER for your loved ones.  My mom did a GREAT job but still so many unknown hoops to jump through.

My brother is SO excited to move back to Wisconsin after 46 years in Springfield. The good thing is moving to Kewaunee WI will give me multiple years of Green Bay Packers presents.  He is not a football fan and literally just discovered TV which he never owned until a few years ago when mom moved in with him.    Netflix? What is Netflix?


Prince - ever hear of him?  Well, I was never a Prince fan.  Heard his music and it was good but that was about it.  BUT - Stacey, my brothers wife was a BIG fan.  She said he was better in concert so she played some Youtube vids and HOLY CRAP - that dude was awesome.

If you have good base - this is AWESOME - I totally love Prince - LIVE



Nuff said - gotta mow the lawn before it rains!