Friday, January 14, 2011

Sharing Email Stories

The following stories are so deeply entwined that
you must read them fully, and only then must you 
click on the link at the page bottom for the third and final story.

Story Number One
Many years ago, Al Capone virtually owned Chicago . Capone wasn't famous for
anything heroic. He was notorious for enmeshing the windy city in everything from
bootlegged booze and prostitution to murder.

Capone had a lawyer nicknamed "Easy Eddie."
He was Capone's lawyer for a good reason.....
he was very good ! In fact, Eddie's skill at legal
maneuvering kept Big Al out of jail for a long time.

To show his appreciation, Capone paid him very well.
Not only was the money big, but Eddie got special
dividends, as well. For instance, he and his family
occupied a fenced-in mansion with live-in help and
all of the conveniences of the day. The estate was
so large that it filled an entire Chicago City block.

Eddie lived the high life of the Chicago mob and gave
little consideration to the atrocity that went on around
him.  But he did have one soft spot, however....
he had a son that he loved dearly. Eddie saw to it that
his young son had clothes, cars, and a good education.
Nothing was withheld. Price was no object. And, despite his involvement with organized crime,
Eddie even tried to teach him right from wrong. Eddie wanted his son to be a better man than
he was.

Yet, with all his wealth and influence, there were two things he couldn't give his son :
he couldn't pass on a good name or a good example.

One day, Easy Eddie reached a difficult decision; he wanted to rectify wrongs he had
done. He decided he would go to the authorities and tell the truth about Al "Scarface"
Capone, clean up his tarnished name, and offer his son some semblance of integrity.
To do this, he would have to testify against The Mob, and he knew that the cost would
be great. So, he testified.

Within the year, Easy Eddie's life ended in a blaze of gunfire on a lonely Chicago Street .
But in his eyes, he had given his son the greatest gift he had to offer, at the greatest
price he could ever pay. Police removed from his pockets a rosary, a crucifix, a religious
medallion, and a poem clipped from a magazine.

The poem read:

"The clock of life is wound but once, and no man has the power 
to tell just when the hands will stop, at late or early hour. 
Now is the only time you own. Live, love, toil with a will. 
Place no faith in time. For the clock may soon be still."

And now, on to STORY NUMBER TWO :

World War II produced many heroes. One such man was Lt. Commander Butch O'Hare.
He was a fighter pilot assigned to the aircraft carrier Lexington in the South Pacific.
One day his entire squadron was sent on a mission. After he was airborne, he looked
at his fuel gauge and realized that someone had forgotten to top off his fuel tank.
He would not have enough fuel to complete his mission and get back to his ship.

His flight leader told him to return to the carrier. Reluctantly, he dropped out of
formation and headed back to the fleet. As he was returning to the mother ship,
he saw something that turned his blood cold; a squadron of Japanese aircraft was
speeding its way toward the American fleet.

The American fighters were gone on a sortie, and the fleet was all but defenceless.
He couldn't reach his squadron and bring them back in time to save the fleet.
Nor could he warn the fleet of the approaching danger. There was only one thing to do.
He must somehow divert them from the fleet.

Laying aside all thoughts of personal safety, he dived into the formation of Japanese
planes. Wing-mounted 50 caliber's blazed as he charged in, attacking one surprised
enemy plane and then another. Butch wove in and out of the now broken formation
and fired at as many planes as possible until all his ammunition was finally spent.

Undaunted, he continued the assault. He dove at the planes, trying to clip a wing or
tail in hopes of damaging as many enemy planes as possible, rendering them unfit to fly.
Finally, the exasperated Japanese squadron took off in another direction.

Deeply relieved, Butch O'Hare and his tattered fighter limped back to the carrier.
Upon arrival, he reported in and related the event surrounding his return. The film from
the gun-camera mounted on his plane told the tale. It showed the extent of Butch's
daring attempt to protect his fleet. He had, in fact, destroyed five enemy aircraft.

This took place on February 20, 1942, and for that action Butch became the Navy's
first Ace of W.W.II, and the first Naval Aviator to win the Medal of Honor.

A year later Butch was killed in aerial combat at the age of 29. His home town
would not allow the memory of this WW II hero to fade, and today, O'Hare Airport
in Chicago is named in tribute to the courage of this great man.

So, the next time you find yourself at O'Hare International, give some thought to
visiting Butch's memorial displaying his statue and his Medal of Honor. It's located
between Terminals 1 and 2. what do these two stories have to do with each other ?

Butch O'Hare was "Easy Eddie's" son.......'Hare

and now, here's the link to the final story..... 
enjoy !

Amazon links
Fateful Rendezvous: The Life of Butch O'Hare (Bluejacket Books)

Fateful Rendezvous: The Life of Butch O'Hare (Bluejacket Books)

 Legends of Airpower: Edward "Butch" O'Hare
Legends of Airpower: Edward "Butch" O'Hare

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