In Memory of CAPT Carroll “Lex” LeFon, and the Wonderful Community He Fostered

Welcome. The idea was floated that a ‘talk amongst yourselves’ blog would be a good addition to for the Non-Facebook Crowd. Here it is.

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A Story or 2 About Speed

For some number of years,  I had a neighbor whom I’d consider a character. And through my life,  I have come to believe that those are the best kind of people to know.

He wasn’t always a favorite of our homeowner’s association, as he would be working on some junky car or truck in his driveway.  He’d be covered in dirt and grease – filthy but happy. After I’d offer him a beer he’d talk about some of his past.

I enjoyed his company.

When I first met him, I thought he was full of – well, in loftier terms, hyperbole.  But his stories involved a lot of self-deprecation which makes me think they were true. 

Braggarts are not known for self-deprecation.

And Speed could laugh at himself.

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A Guy You Need To Read

USSArizonaCVN76
So I’ve been following this (relatively) new blog “I don’t know; ask the skipper.” Started up in February of this year.

The guy has a way with words. Lots of good material over there.

So I’ve added him to the Blogroll. When you get a chance, check it out. Tell him “the Sarge sent me,” or not.

I think Lex would have liked this guy. Definitely an “OK-3.”

 

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If Lex loved the F/A-18, he has this man to thank…

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Sent to me by my Air Force friend.

I remember reading a post by Lex on the history of the F/A-18, and how it was the “loser” in the competition between the YF-16 and YF-17.

Both of these planes, at least to me, have been proven as one of the Pentagon’s better programs.

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The Maritime Museum Of San Diego

 

During my trip a few weeks ago, I spent a bit of time on the waterfront – and how that has changed in the last 33 years.  The Maritime Museum had really expanded.

The Star of India has been there as long as I can remember – but there were a lot of new additions. The most interesting to me was the B-39, a Soviet Foxtrot-Class diesel sub from the 1970s.

Another surprise – the USS Dolphin – a US Navy research submarine built for deep diving. She set a deep dive record still held today, and was decommissioned only in 2007.

The HMS Surprise – built as a replica of a 1700s British frigate was used in the filming of Master And Commander.

Other additions? The Stars and Stripes, from the America’s Cup. Then there was the ferryboat Berkeley, which saw decades of service in San Francisco Bay. Imagine riding in that on the open sea being towed 400 miles to San Diego.  I actually attended a wedding reception there about 10 year ago. 

I was on the “quick tour” – had to get to Shakespeares – but I did spend time on the 2 subs.

Pay attention to the Soviet’s attitude towards those sub sailors who were claustrophobic!

By the way, this sub – built in the early 70s, seemed like a Cadillac as far as room compared to the USS Pompanito I showed you awhile back.

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The Heart Of The North – Flying an F-105 Into North Vietnam

North

This .pdf file was sent to me by an Air Force friend who knows what this author is writing about. I’m using his words in his email with his permission:

You may remember Jack Broughton author of "Thud Ridge" and "Going Downtown". 
I met him when we worked at Rockwell on the Bone program at Edwards.
He's the AF Cross recipient that got court-martialed for defending a couple of his pilots that were
accused of returning fire at a Russian ship in Haiphong Harbor. Looks like he is still kicking -
and writing. Brings back memories from long ago………..

Just click on the link above to get Jack's article.

To subject our servicemen going into harm's way with such a restrictive Rules of Engagement....
I hope that the politicians who set this are having to face it - if not in this world, then the next...


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Cutaway Thursday: Boeing 2707

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Last week we did the Boeing Model 733 which evolved in to the Boeing 2707 (the 2 perhaps indicating that it was a mach 2 capable airplane). Anyway, this is a far better cutaway of the similiar aircraft AND it gives an indication of just how complex the actual airplane would have been.

The most recognizable difference between the 733 and the 2707 is the position of the variable geometry wing in relation to the horizontal stabilator. As you can see here, in full sweep, the is flush to the stab making it a delta shape simlar to the F-14 Tomcat. The 733 also features a variable geometry wing but at full sweep the aircraft resembles the B-1 Lancer in planform.

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LaBrea Tar Pits

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I thought you would like to see this – as far as I know it is unique in the world.

And it’s in  Los Angeles on Wilshire Blvd, the “Main Street” of downtown L.A.

Natural asphalt has been bubbling up to the surface since the ice age, and thousands of animals from mastodons to saber-tooth tigers, to the wolves that made the mistake of thinking there was an easy (trapped) meal, became trapped themselves.

When I used to visit here as a child there was a small cinderblock museum – the George C. Page Museum is new and it is worth a stop.

Because I am running into a space limitations I won’t show you all my pictures, but there are a lot more here.

One thing I did learn  – I had always thought that the horse was brought to North America by Europeans but learned here that there was a native horse here from the ice age.

 

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I thought this shirt was pretty funny…

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With that, I selected the ‘Take Me Home” option on my GPS…

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