#MilitaryMonday

Military thank you

May 1934, the USS Constitution completes a 3-year, 90 port city tour along the Atlantic, Gulf, and Pacific coasts. After her journey, she returned to Boston, Mass. where she remains today as part of the Boston National Historical Parks.

USS Constitution, (1797-____) arriving at San Francisco, California, during her tour of ninety United States Ports, 1933. NHHC Photograph Collection, NH 70818.

USS Constitution, (1797-____) arriving at San Francisco, California, during her tour of ninety United States Ports, 1933. NHHC Photograph Collection, NH 70818.

USS Constitution, (1797-____) in Gaillard Cut, Panama Canal. Photographed during her 1931-34 cruise. Courtesy of Commander Louis J. Gulliver, USN, (Retired), July 1940. He was in command of USS Constitution during her 1931-34 cruise. NHHC Photograph Collection, NH 55938

USS Constitution, (1797-____) in Gaillard Cut, Panama Canal. Photographed during her 1931-34 cruise. Courtesy of Commander Louis J. Gulliver, USN, (Retired), July 1940. He was in command of USS Constitution during her 1931-34 cruise. NHHC Photograph Collection, NH 55938

USS Constitution, (1797-____) being greeted by Curtiss OC Observation Aircraft. Photographed during her 1931-34 cruise. Courtesy of Commander Louis J. Gulliver, USN, (Retired), July 1940. He was in command of Constitution during her 1933-34 cruise. NHHC Photograph Collection, NH 55934.

USS Constitution, (1797-____) being greeted by Curtiss OC Observation Aircraft. Photographed during her 1931-34 cruise. Courtesy of Commander Louis J. Gulliver, USN, (Retired), July 1940. He was in command of Constitution during her 1933-34 cruise. NHHC Photograph Collection, NH 55934.

USS Constitution, (1797-____), in the Chagres River approaching the first lock at the Panama Canal. USS Grebe (AM 43) is astern. Photographed during her 1931-34. Courtesy of Commander Louis J. Gulliver, USN, (Retired), July 1940. He was in command of USS Constitution during her 1931-34 cruise. NHHC Photograph Collection, NH 55937.

USS Constitution, (1797-____), in the Chagres River approaching the first lock at the Panama Canal. USS Grebe (AM 43) is astern. Photographed during her 1931-34. Courtesy of Commander Louis J. Gulliver, USN, (Retired), July 1940. He was in command of USS Constitution during her 1931-34 cruise. NHHC Photograph Collection, NH 55937.

In 1944, USS Ticonderoga (CV 14) was commissioned during WWII‬ and served in several campaigns in the Pacific earning five battle stars.

USS Ticonderoga (CVS 14), circa the late 1960's or early 1970's. Photo # NH 97488-KN

USS Ticonderoga (CVS 14), circa the late 1960’s or early 1970’s.
Photo # NH 97488-KN

Four U.S. Navy Grumman S-2E Trackers from Anti-Submarine Squadron VS-21 Lightning Bolts and VS-29 Tromboners fly over the aircraft carrier USS Ticonderoga (CVS 14) as she arrives at San Diego, Calif., following her conversion to an anti-submarine warfare carrier. VS-21 and VS-29 were assigned to Carrier Anti-Submarine Air Group 53 (CVSG-53) aboard the Ticonderoga in 1970. Date: June 26, 1970  Source U.S. Navy National Museum of Naval Aviation photo No. 1996.488.039.063

Four U.S. Navy Grumman S-2E Trackers from Anti-Submarine Squadron VS-21 Lightning Bolts and VS-29 Tromboners fly over the aircraft carrier USS Ticonderoga (CVS 14) as she arrives at San Diego, Calif., following her conversion to an anti-submarine warfare carrier. VS-21 and VS-29 were assigned to Carrier Anti-Submarine Air Group 53 (CVSG-53) aboard the Ticonderoga in 1970.
Date: June 26, 1970
Source U.S. Navy National Museum of Naval Aviation photo No. 1996.488.039.063

Grumman F6F Hellcat fighters from USS Ticonderoga (CV 14) prepare to take off for strikes against targets in Manila Bay. The two leading planes are F6F-5N night fighters, with wing-mounted radar. Photograph is dated Jan. 9, 1945, but may have been taken during the 5-6 November 1944 attacks. Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the National Archives.  Catalog #: 80-G-305244

Grumman F6F Hellcat fighters from USS Ticonderoga (CV 14) prepare to take off for strikes against targets in Manila Bay. The two leading planes are F6F-5N night fighters, with wing-mounted radar. Photograph is dated Jan. 9, 1945, but may have been taken during the 5-6 November 1944 attacks. Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the National Archives.
Catalog #: 80-G-305244

USS Ticonderoga (CV 14) afire after she was hit by a Kamikaze attack off Formosa, Jan. 21, 1945. Photographed from USS Miami (CL 89). A Vought OS2U Kingfisher floatplane is on the cruiser's starboard catapult, in the foreground. Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the National Archives.  Catalog #: 80-G-273151

USS Ticonderoga (CV 14) afire after she was hit by a Kamikaze attack off Formosa, Jan. 21, 1945. Photographed from USS Miami (CL 89). A Vought OS2U Kingfisher floatplane is on the cruiser’s starboard catapult, in the foreground. Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the National Archives.
Catalog #: 80-G-273151

May 8, 2015: More than 50 vintage ‪#WWII‬ aircraft flying over our nations Capital as we commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Allied Victory in Europe. ‪#‎VEDay70‬

Vintage military aircraft Vought F4U ‘Corsair’ flies over the Washington Navy Yard, on the 70th anniversary of Victory in Europe Day, May 8, as part of the Arsenal of Democracy to honor World War II veterans.

Vintage military aircraft Vought F4U ‘Corsair’ flies over the Washington Navy Yard, on the 70th anniversary of Victory in Europe Day, May 8, as part of the Arsenal of Democracy to honor World War II veterans.

(May 8, 2015) – A formation of North American B-25 ‘Mitchell’ aircraft fly’s over Arlington, VA. while participating in the  70th anniversary of the Allied Victory in Europe ‘Arsenal of Democracy’ Flyover of Washington D.C. Fifty-six aircraft from various organizations shared in the event and the B-25 ‘Mitchell’ was the aircraft used in “Doolittle’s Raid Over Tokyo” on April, 18, 1942.

(May 8, 2015) – A formation of North American B-25 ‘Mitchell’ aircraft fly’s over Arlington, VA. while participating in the
70th anniversary of the Allied Victory in Europe ‘Arsenal of Democracy’ Flyover of Washington D.C. Fifty-six aircraft from various organizations shared in the event and the B-25 ‘Mitchell’ was the aircraft used in “Doolittle’s Raid Over Tokyo” on April, 18, 1942.

Vintage military aircraft flies over the Mall in Washington, on the 70th anniversary of Victory in Europe Day, May 8, as part of the Arsenal of Democracy to honor World War II veterans.

Vintage military aircraft flies over the Mall in Washington, on the 70th anniversary of Victory in Europe Day, May 8, as part of the Arsenal of Democracy to honor World War II veterans.

Vintage military aircraft fly over the Washington Navy Yard and display ship Barry (DD 933), on the 70th anniversary of Victory in Europe Day, May 8, as part of the Arsenal of Democracy to honor World War II veterans.

Vintage military aircraft fly over the Washington Navy Yard and display ship Barry (DD 933), on the 70th anniversary of Victory in Europe Day, May 8, as part of the Arsenal of Democracy to honor World War II veterans.

A Consolidated PBY ‘Catalina’ aircraft fly’s over the Washington Navy Yard as part of the 70th anniversary of the Allied Victory in Europe.

A Consolidated PBY ‘Catalina’ aircraft fly’s over the Washington Navy Yard as part of the 70th anniversary of the Allied Victory in Europe.

(May 8, 2015) – Two Vought F4U ‘Corsiar’ aircraft fly in formation over Arlington, VA. while participating in the 70th anniversary of the Allied Victory in Europe ‘Arsenal of Democracy’ Flyover of Washington D.C. Fifty-six aircraft from various organizations shared in the event.

(May 8, 2015) – Two Vought F4U ‘Corsiar’ aircraft fly in formation over Arlington, VA. while participating in the 70th anniversary of the Allied Victory in Europe ‘Arsenal of Democracy’ Flyover of Washington D.C. Fifty-six aircraft from various organizations shared in the event.

(May 8, 2015) – A Grumman TBM ‘Avenger’, Vought F4U ‘Corsair’, North American P-51 ‘Mustang’, and Curtiss P-40 ‘Warhawk’ fly in formation while participating in the 70th anniversary of the Allied Victory in Europe ‘Arsenal of Democracy’ Flyover of Washington D.C. Fifty-six aircraft from various organizations shared in the event.

(May 8, 2015) – A Grumman TBM ‘Avenger’, Vought F4U ‘Corsair’, North American P-51 ‘Mustang’, and Curtiss P-40 ‘Warhawk’ fly in formation while participating in the 70th anniversary of the Allied Victory in Europe ‘Arsenal of Democracy’ Flyover of Washington D.C. Fifty-six aircraft from various organizations shared in the event.

And finally, Douglas TBD-1 torpedo planes from USS Enterprise (CV 6) In flight, circa 1939. Plane closest to the camera is # 0318. Note how stripes painted on wings assist pilots in maintaining three-plane V formation. Collection of Vice Adm. George C. Dyer, USN (Retired). U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

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VE Day Reader: A Polish Girl’s Holocaust Diary

Rutka Laskier and her baby brother in 1938. They were both murdered in Auschwitz in 1943.

Rutka Laskier and her baby brother in 1938. They were both murdered in Auschwitz in 1943.

A teenage Jewish girl living under the Nazis in Poland during 1943 feared she was “turning into an animal waiting to die”, according to her diary, which documents the final months before her death in the Auschwitz concentration camp.

Rutka Laskier, 14, the same age as the Dutch teenager Anne Frank, wrote the 60-page diary over a four-month period in Bedzin, Poland. The diary, published by Israel’s Holocaust museum, documents the steady collapse of the ghetto under the weight of the Nazi occupation and deportations, as well as the first loves, friendships and jealousies of an adolescent girl growing up during the war.

News of the concentration camps, including Auschwitz, and the brutal killings of Jews, filtered through to her.

Writing on February 5 1943, she said:

“I simply can’t believe that one day I will be allowed to leave this house without the yellow star. Or even that this war will end one day. If this happens I will probably lose my mind from joy.

“The little faith I used to have has been completely shattered. If God existed, he would have certainly not permitted that human beings be thrown alive into furnaces, and the heads of little toddlers be smashed with the butt of guns or be shoved into sacks and gassed to death.”

Later she wrote: “The rope around us is getting tighter and tighter. I’m turning into an animal waiting to die.” Her final entry is brief: “I’m very bored. The entire day I’m walking around the room. I have nothing to do.”

The last entry is dated April 24 1943, at which point she hid the notebook in the basement of the house her family were living in, a building that had been confiscated by the Nazis to be part of the Bedzin ghetto. In August that year, the teenager and her family were transported to the Auschwitz concentration camp and it is thought she was killed immediately.

The diary was found after the war by Stanislawa Sapinska, a Christian whose family owned the house lived in by the Laskiers, and who had met Rutka several times during the war.

Ms Sapinska, now in her late 80s, took the diary and kept it secret for more than 60 years until one of her nephews last year convinced her to present it to Yad Vashem, Israel’s national Holocaust museum and archive in Jerusalem.

“She wanted me to save the diary,” Ms Sapinska told the Associated Press. “She said ‘I don’t know if I will survive, but I want the diary to live on, so that everyone will know what happened to the Jews’.”

The diary was authenticated by Yad Vashem, which has now published it as Rutka’s Notebook, in Hebrew and English. Rutka’s father, Yaakov, was the only member of the family to survive the camp. He moved to Israel and had a new family. He died in 1986.

His daughter in Israel, Zahava Sherz, who has written a foreword to the diary, knew nothing about Rutka before the journal surfaced. “I was struck by this deep connection to Rutka,” said Dr Sherz, 57. “I was an only child, and now I suddenly have an older sister. This black hole was suddenly filled and I immediately fell in love with her.”

Diary entry from February 20 1943

“I have a feeling that I am writing for the last time. There is an Aktion [a Nazi arrest operation] in town. I’m not allowed to go out and I’m going crazy, imprisoned in my own house. For a few days, something’s in the air. The town is breathlessly waiting in anticipation, and this anticipation is the worst of all. I wish it would end already! This torment; this is hell.

“I try to escape from these thoughts, of the next day, but they keep haunting me like nagging flies. If only I could say, it’s over, you only die once. But I can’t, because despite all these atrocities I want to live, and wait for the following day. That means waiting for Auschwitz or labour camp. I must not think about this so now I’ll start writing about private matters.”

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