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Aging WWII Flying Ace Grounded by Jail


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Greg Robinson
Sounds like he's where he belongs.....

 

Yeah....that was my thought also. It's not unheard of for war vets with distinguished service records to flop miserably when they return to civilian life. One classic example was the USMC fighter ace, Greg "Pappy" Boyington. In his case he was a drunk who mostly hurt himself when he went on binges. But this guy in the above referenced article sounds like he's just plain mean and evil.

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I was at a joint where an MOH recipient was locked up. And he needed to be.

 

And politicians, and pro football and baseball and basketball and.......... thumbdown.gif

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If anyone here has ever seen the latenight cartoon show, "King of the Hill" you may wonder if this guy is the inspiration for the character "Cotton Hill" who lists his occupation as "retired war hero):

cottonhill.jpg

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I saw Greg "Pappy" Boyington in Paris at Le Bourget Air Show when I was kid. He was signing pictures and books at a table. I was doing the line with my childhood mate in order to have pictures of him signed.

Unfortunately, he seemed to be drunk and had a nasty attitude towards his "fans" so we quitted the line. Everybody was embarrassed.

We were very disappointed because the serie with Robert Conrad was airing on french TV at this time and "Papy" was one of our heroes.

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It was Pappy Boyington who said in his autobiography....."Show me a hero and I'll show you a bum!" Pappy was a great fighter pilot who was also a drunk...........not the first....not the last. Of course this addage is not true in most cases. We lost a real American hero 2 weeks ago with the passing of Flying Tiger Ace David Lee "Tex" Hill. This guy sounds like he's had a Napoleon complex all his life. What he did in in 1945 and during his career as an Air Force officer does not excuse his later behaviors. Concur......sounds like he's where he belongs......

Bobgee

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People that others consider heroes are just ordinary people who lived through extraordinary conditions for the most part. Just because someone does something brave or heroic does not always change who they are. I think the guy should stay in jail.

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As they said in "Heartbreak Ridge"......"He should be kept in a glass case with a sign on it, 'Break only in time of war'.

 

Sounds like a guy in search of a war, living off his status. I will give him credit, though, it looks like he's not trying to get himself out, others are doing it for him.

 

The "Cotton Hill" reference seems appropriate, though LOL.

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I DON'T KNOW. KNOWING WHAT HE DID FOR HIS COUNTRY AND WHAT COMBAT MIGHT HAVE DONE TO HIM (ITS HAPPENED MANY TIMES BEFORE AND IS STILL HAPPENING TODAY) AT HIS AGE I THINK WE SHOULD CUT HIM A LITTLE SLACK. I'M NOT USEING IT AS AN EXCUSE FOR WHAT HE DID.I JUST THINK ITS THE RIGHT THING TO DO.

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I could understand giving him a break if he went out and got drunk and beat someone up or got into something a little less seriouse, but conspiring to have his ex murderd and her house burnt down is a bit much.

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IMPERIAL QUEST

My opinion is this. Our circumstances, misfortunes, and hardships DO NOT change us, these times only bring out the true character of the individual. We have all heard something said like, "He sure has changed since he came into some money." I could not disagree more, what should have been said is "Money brought out the true rotten character of the SOB." The very same brutal nature that made this maniac an asset in war, is the same one that makes him a disgrace in peacetime.

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I DON'T KNOW. KNOWING WHAT HE DID FOR HIS COUNTRY AND WHAT COMBAT MIGHT HAVE DONE TO HIM (ITS HAPPENED MANY TIMES BEFORE AND IS STILL HAPPENING TODAY) AT HIS AGE I THINK WE SHOULD CUT HIM A LITTLE SLACK. I'M NOT USEING IT AS AN EXCUSE FOR WHAT HE DID.I JUST THINK ITS THE RIGHT THING TO DO.

 

 

But he's still capable of being dangerous to others.

 

I know a guy - an old China Marine named Richard Keech - who's close to 90 and growing old and weaker in California state prisons. Dick, who worked as slave labor in Japan after being taken POW after the fall of Philippines, was a genuine nice guy who just flipped out after one his daughters husbands continued to abuse and beat her. Dick shot him dead. You can read Dick's letter from prison here: http://www.richard-keech.org/modules/news/...e.php?storyid=2

 

He's been locked up for about 10 years and during that time has written extensively about his time in the Corps, POW camp (and prison).

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IMPERIAL QUEST

Almost forgot this statement....

 

"All that I've done for this country, I should be able to live my life the way I want to," Aust said in a jailhouse interview recently. "I've got a lot I still want to do."

 

Stupid me, what was I thinking? Heroes should be allowed to conspire to kill, and burn down peoples houses, after all he has earned the right.

 

Give me a break...

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War certainly does change people. Ask any shell shocked soldier from the trenches of the Somme (If one is still around), or a soldier who's friend was torn in two by a 20mm... I'm sure that they were changed. Both their former self, and their post-traumatic psychological state of being. As someone who has enjoyed every bit of his Psych classes while in school, I can certainly see where this man's grief is coming from. However, is this an excuse to act like a savage? No. Perhaps a more appropriate question to ask would be: How does one adjust himself back into civilian life after serving in war, whose code of conduct is barbarity.

 

(Don't try to tell me that the Jerries and the Japs were the only barbarians)

 

Chris

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I agree mostly with that, my point on doing something brave not changing someone is ment that doing something brave and noble does not always turn someones character instantly into good character. Someone that was evil and deceitful, or a criminal before the war could still do something brave and nobel and still be just as rotten as before. I have seend complete self cenetered jackasses rise to the occasion in combat and do something totally heroic and the next day be just as much a jackass and twice as more self cenetered afterwards. Did they deserve medals and praise for what they did? Yes. Do they deserve a free ticket to do what they want for the rest of their lives? No. A decoration is given for the action, not the person.

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IMPERIAL QUEST
War certainly does change people. Ask any shell shocked soldier from the trenches of the Somme (If one is still around), or a soldier who's friend was torn in two by a 20mm... I'm sure that they were changed...

Chris

 

 

Changes in perception of life, or re-evaluating what is important to a person - absolutely, changing ones core make up, which is their character - no way. The courage of the scrawny little guy that stormed over the top to single handedly take out a German machine gun nest didn't just manifest courage suddenly from no where. He may have never thought he had it in him, but it arose from deep within - he didn't just "change" it was always there. For the shell-shocked soldier in the trenches, same thing, his character was one that was not able to tolerate as much as the soldier who did not allow himself to suffer from the trauma. I think we put way too much emphasis on what we perceive a persons character to be without observing them in a trial by fire. Then when we observe Joe blow snapping in the midst of a bad situation, we say he has changed because our perception was one of an easy going nature during peaceful times.

 

To use a painful, and graphic example from my personal life - Eleven years ago, my brother shot himself with a pistol that I gave him as a gift while on the phone with me. A few minutes after that I rushed to his house to see him lying in a pool of blood, and held his hand as I felt the warmth of life leave, and the coldness of death set in - I think that certainly qualifies as traumatic. Since then, I have indeed learned to value certain little things in life that I took for granted, but I have yet to kill or hurt anyone as a result of my nightmares...why...my character will not allow me to turn into something that I am not.

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DM - I agree 100%. The law is suppose to be there for a purpose. In theory, no one is above it. Perhaps we can add war heroes to the list of those exempt from the law, such as some politicians, the wealthy, and pop-stars...

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I CAN'T DISAGREE WITH ANYBODY HERE BUT AT HIS AGE AND WITH THE TIME HE'S SERVED I STILL THINK HE SHOULD BE SET FREE. I SEE A LOT OF WW2 VETS AT OUR LOCAL VFW POST AND WE DO OWE SOMETHING TO THE "GREATEST GENERATION".

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I think he probably got what was owed to him. I am sure he got a fair trial, which is part of the principals of which he fought for, I am sure he is treated decent in jail, which is another principal in which he fought for, and his ex can sleep secure at night knowing her right to live will not be prematurly shortened by him, which is yet another one of those principals he fought for. I am not saying that anyones opinion is wrong or right, this is just my beliefe. Should someones actions in combat and devotion to service be something to take into account? I think so, but I also think it should be weighed out appropriately with the crime.

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Yeah....that was my thought also. It's not unheard of for war vets with distinguished service records to flop miserably when they return to civilian life. One classic example was the USMC fighter ace, Greg "Pappy" Boyington. In his case he was a drunk who mostly hurt himself when he went on binges. But this guy in the above referenced article sounds like he's just plain mean and evil.

 

a lot of military, especially combat arms and combat veterans, become angry and self-destructive drunks. regardless of what the civilian world thinks, combat does change people. The human mind does not fully develop until roughly the age of 25. These days, the majority of combat bets are 18-22 first term enlistments. Such violence and shock would dtill have an impact on the way they are. a lot of men who are great in the military are great because they live it, and have extreme difficulty adjusting to the civilian world

 

the above comment has nothing to do with the pilot in question

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