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ATTACK SQUADRON TWO
Heavy Attack Squadron Two
"I WAS A SAILOR ONCE.
I WAS PART OF THE NAVY;
THE NAVY WILL ALWAYS BE PART OF ME."
Brandon Benn Blum USN/ret.
Cdr. Brandon Benn Blum USN/ret. will be buried with full military honors
at Arlington National Cemetery in D.C. at 3pm on Tues. Jan. 14th, 2014.
It has been a long wait, but I am sure is worth it. Katrina and I
will be at the Doubletree Hotel in Crystal City from Jan. 13th to Jan.
15th. It is one mile from Reagan and from Arlington. We made
arrangements through Travelocity.com.
Thank you all for your support, prayers and friendship, so treasured by
both of us. I am so happy that he will be given this special honor
that he so much deserves.
I will be closing down this e-mail address, but you can be in touch with
me through email@example.com
Please feel free to pass this on to anyone you might think would be
interested in this info.
Love to all,
1123 Melton Dr. S.W. Lilburn, GA 30047
Home # 770-978-6199
Cell # 770-846-3437
Stay tuned for the
A3 Skywarrior Friends,
In the month of March as I was beginning to think about getting this
letter written on behalf of A3 Skywarrior 144825, which is
currently stranded on the flight ramp at NAS Whidbey IS, our hearts
were saddened by the breaking news of the crash of an EA-6B Prowler
flying out of NAS Whidbey Island. All crew members, unfortunately,
were lost. When these things happen my mind always quickly
moves to those who have been left behind. I think of wives,
husbands, children, parents, friends and co-workers who are left
behind to suffer the loss of these dedicated crew members who were
willing to give their lives for our country. Regardless of
our heartfelt feelings for those who have loved these individuals,
there always seems to be so little we can do to show our concern for
those who will grieve, in the coming years, for these who were taken
out of their lives.
When I saw the newsflash about the recent loss of the EA-6B and its
crew my mind went to a Memorial on the base at NAS Whidbey IS, where
an EA-6B Prowler proudly stands in honor of those who served in
squadrons flying this plane. Sometimes in order to honor the heroes
who gave their lives for our country, a memorial site such as this
is all we can do.
This is why I would never give up on the idea of a Skywarrior for
Whidbey Island. Our committee of six dedicated people, Jim Vannice,
James VanderHoek, Ralph “Digger” O’Dell, Lanny Kee, Ralph Estes and
Al Archer voted on April 24, 2009 to get a Skywarrior. The decision
to take this action was perhaps daring, but was backed by an undying
faith that there were people who loved the Skywarrior as much as the
members of our committee and who would support the effort to bring
one back to our base. Our confidence in the Skywarrior
veterans was rewarded as people responded to the cause. The love
and dedication of many people was fulfilled on April 29, 2011 when
we saw 144825 settle on the runway at NAS Whidbey IS. It has truly
taken contributions from distant places and the effort of many
dedicated people who have spent countless hours on this project in
order to bring 144825 to the spot on the ramp where it sits today.
Unfortunately, we still need help. As you likely know by this time,
the exact spot where our plane needs to sit had an underground oil
tank which required removal, the dirt cleaned and then replaced
before the slab could be poured and the plane moved to its final
resting place. At this time we are unsure of the expense we
will have in the completion of the project. Cutbacks in military
support have placed limitations on military spending and this has
slowed our efforts, in that we are not certain how much help the
base will be able to provide to us in the final phase of the
Due to this setback, we are asking you to stand by us and consider a
Memorial Day gift toward the completion of this project to honor
those we lost.
Fund Raising Chairman
Good news about memorial paver bricks!
Before we struck oil through an oil tank entering our lives which
delayed the completion of the memorial, the paver availability had
to end in order to complete the paver work before we finished our
project. Now with the delay on the completion of the memorial, our
committee has been able to offer the opportunity for us to order
See our Website
for an order form.
A Member of VAH 2 is Being
I do not know if you remember me, but I contacted you a
while ago looking for information on my uncle, Jackie Allen Young, who's
Skywarrior slid off of the deck of the U.S.S. Coral Sea into the Sea of
Japan on 3/3/61. You were all so kind and the information you gave me
helped my in my search. I am writing to you all to let you know that my
search has reached a successful conclusion.
With your help, I was able to get from the Navy his full
service record as well as the transcript of the investigation into his
accident. I was also able to get a medal he was due awarded to him. He
is not eligible to have his name put on the wall, but The Vietnam
Veterans Memorial Fund has something they call the In Memory program. It
was created for veterans like my uncle, who lost their lives in defense
of their country, but who do not meet the criteria to be included on the
wall. Once a year they hold a ceremony at the Wall in Washington, DC.
During the ceremony, the names of all those veterans being honored are
read aloud, by their relatives if they are there. A tribute is then
placed at the wall, again by the family if they are present. The tribute
contains the honoree's application, supplementary materials,
photographs, and a certificate created by the Vietnam Veterans Memorial
Fund. This tribute, along with anything else left by the family, will be
collected and archived by the National Park Service. The ceremony will
take place on Friday, June 14 2013 at 10:00 am at the Wall.
Words cannot express how much this means to me and my
family. Your information and assistance helped me get to this point and
I am very grateful. If you would like any more information about the
ceremony feel free to contact me or you can call The Fund at
202-393-0090 ext. 106. You can also send an email to
InMemory@vvmf.org. Thank you all
for what you did and thank you for your service.
Due to recent delays
to accommodate the EPA after removing a fuel cell from our
proposed Whidbey site, we have decided to reinstate the paver
program with a 31 December 2013 deadline. Each paver is
authorized to have three lines, with a maximum of 21 characters
or spaces per line. Provided we can meet a minimum order of 50
pavers, we will be able to keep the same price of $35 per
paver. Individuals may obtain an order form from our updated
Check and form may be mailed to: A3SWMF or A-3 Skywarrior
Whidbey Memorial Foundation, P.O. Box 1402, Oak Harbor, WA
98277. Should you have
any questions, you may contact Ralph directly or myself. Thanks
for your support.
Memorial Site - Underground Storage Tank removal. 26 March 2013
26 March, the underground storage tank was removed from the site where the
Whidbey A-3 Skywarrior Memorial will be located. Removal was done under a
contract between NAS Whidbey Island and a company called Diane’s Tanks. The
soil surrounding the tank has been found to be contaminated with oil that
has leaked from the tank. Cleanup of the site is the responsibility of NAS
Whidbey Island. So far, we have received the following information from the
Public Works Department of NAS Whidbey Island concerning the status of the
On 2 April (In response to
our request for information about tests on the soil samples taken on 26
March): “We haven’t received any result yet. We don’t expect them to come
in for a few weeks. The results won’t change our schedule for clean-up
unfortunately. At the earliest, 2014 is the most optimistic for completion.”
On 4 April: “Please share
this with the rest of the A-3 Foundation if I left someone out. We’ve
been talking to Diane’s Tanks about the contamination data. Unfortunately,
we cannot allow the results to be available for public release. Our spill
response employee is the project manager and needs to develop a mitigation
strategy coordinated with the State. The data is treated as sensitive
information during this coordination period. I can keep you apprised
of the schedule and progress we are making as it pertains to the A-3
construction schedule. So let me know if you have questions and I’ll do my
best to find you the answers.”
What this means is that
construction of the memorial site is postponed until the site can be cleaned
up. Because of cutbacks related to the budget sequestration, NAS Whidbey
does not have the funds to begin cleaning up the site this year. Therefore,
we are hoping that construction of the site will resume sometime in 2014.
The technical plans for the site have been drawn up, the memorial wall is
being engraved , and all the memorial pavers are ready to be laid at the
site. As soon as we get the go-ahead from NAS Whidbey, we will finish
construction of the site and move the Whale to it.
We regret this delay, but
there is nothing we can do to expedite the process. The site is on NAS
Whidbey property and they must adhere to established regulations and
procedures in order to clean up the contamination before any other work can
Please watch this page for any additional information
that may become available.
Whale of a groundbreaking near Whidbey Island
Naval Air Station
The Salmon Wrapper has the full story.
Go to the link below:
Isn't she a beauty.
A very special thank you to
all who brought this great tribute to completion
from all Heavy Two's
Royal Rampants - Thank You
This report is from Bill Burklow:
Jeff Hansen & I attended an aircraft movement
meeting this morning and here is a short breakdown of that meeting.
Bill MacMillan stated that the movement of the aircraft will be
in two phases on the same day, rather than move the aircraft while it’s
still nice out and before the rains start (however this is still subject to
change due to a few unforeseen circumstances).
Only those actually needed to be present for the move will be
allowed to be involved in the movement no matter when it happens. However,
they want to move the aircraft to the site as soon as possible to get it off
the Flight Line.
Aircraft will not move from present site at Hangar 9, to its
permanent site until the following things happen first.
The site is constructed and this will be only the concrete pad
at first, without any sidewalks, parking lots, signs, etc. The aircraft will
be chained at the appropriate tie down points. The site will also be built in
phases as time, money and weather permits. I will get with Jeff Wallin at a
later date to determine dates of follow on construction.
Site construction (ground breaking) cannot begin until NAS
Public Works Engineering approves the submitted revised drawings from P&L
Construction, anticipated to be completed in a day or two.
Earliest site construction may now happen can be Thursday of this
week but no later than Monday of next week.
It will take a week to build the site and then have it inspected
by NAS Public Works before the concrete can be poured.
Once the concrete is poured, it will take another week to set
and cure properly.
Then it will have a week of testing to insure proper curing and
weight bearing properties, etc.
Estimated time of completion and ready for aircraft movement to
sight will be the last of Sept or 1 Aug.
(Basically 3 wks from
When aircraft is moved, only NAS, FRC, Chugach and A3SWMF
personnel will be involved.
A3SWMF personnel involved in aircraft movement.
Note: A3SWMF members
wishing to view the movement of aircraft along Ault Field Rd will be allowed,
however they must stay off the roadway and no heckling or interference with
movement is requested. Movement time has yet to be established, but let it be
noted that it will be in the very earlier hours (darkness) of the morning.