The SANDBOX 
                 Issue #64   May 27, 2000
        Ideas - Opinion - Personal Experience
              sandbox@richlandbombers.com

                       New Archive Site:
           http://THE.SANDBOX.tripod.com

 "They say a reasonable amount of flees is good
 fer a dog--- keeps him from broodin' over bein' a
 dog," 
 
          - Richard Bethell, Lord Westbury
                        (1800-1873)


Look Who's Talking Today!

     "It is a well known fact that our founding
 fathers went to great lengths to eliminate the
 privileged class such as the royals and nobility. 
 However, in recent years the Congress has been
 working very hard to defeat that notion...They
 have now taken on the airs of Dukes and
 Duchesses."

                    - Lee Johnson '55

     "We had something great in Richland, ... Our
 churches were "United Protestant". Our teachers
 were of a quality beyond compare. We could
 leave our doors unlocked and our bicycles laying
 on the front yard. We could stay out until
 midnight on those warm summer nights."

                  - Jay Siegel '61

     "Discovery has a momentum of its own and
 the only difference, [had we not gotten there
 first,] would be that the Nuclear Age would have
 started in another country, probably Japan, which
 even had a bomber on the drawing board  to
 deliver their weapon a one-way distance to New
 York City."

                         Burt Pierard '59

                                ~ ~ ~

      "Elian's mother lost her life trying to bring her
 son to a country where he would be able to have
 some personal "rights." ... Politics had NO
 business being involved in this "family matter."

            Mari (Leona Eckert) Leahy, '65

                              ~ ~ ~


     "A big brown bear is entering the clearing just
 a few yards from me.  He's sitting down now,
 looking around.  Must be about 450 lbs or so. 
 He seems to be taking an interest in me."

                        - Al Parker '53

                            ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
                     
The SANDBOX, Issue #64, Salutes:
 The Col-Hi/RHS Class of 1964
 To get to the '64 Home Page, go to:                    

All-Bomber-Links-
    http://www.bigfoot.com/~RichlandBombers
    When you click on 1964, you will find:

Class of '64 Grade School Pictures and links to:
 The Year 1964,  20th, 25th, 30th, 35th,  Year
 Reunions, Pictures &  Stuff , 35th Year Reunion
 Memory Book Update and Some '64 gatherings.

Also, go to the Then And Now ~ Website by
 Terry Liechty to see Before and After pictures of
 1964 Class members and other great pictures.

The '64 Home Page is maintained by Maren
 Smyth, '64. 

Maren maintains sites for a lot of other
 classes also, and could use a hand with some of
 them!  Let her know if you are interested in
 helping out!  Mail to: Vegas68@cheerful.com

                          ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Here's more of what we're talking about today:

Subj:   Congress:  Extra Special People?
From:   Lee Johnson '55
BeegByte@aol.com

I must take up my pen and support Maren's
 assertion that the Congress has set themselves
 up as extra special people.  One of the many 
 things is by having an exclusive, overly generous
 retirement scheme designed to enrich themselves
 at public expense.

It is a well known fact that our founding fathers
 went to great lengths to eliminate the privileged
 class such as the royals and nobility.  However,
 in recent years the Congress has been working
 very hard to defeat that notion by setting
 themselves separate from a number of  laws and
 dipping into the public funds.  They have now
 taken on the airs of Dukes and Duchesses.
  
                     - Lee Johnson '55

                               ~ ~ ~ 

Subj:   Why the guilt?
From:   Jay Siegel '61
jazfuchsias@prodigy.net

RE: "The Nuclear Age: Our Heritage?"
       by Verla Farrens Gardner (61)
       (As seen in issue #62 or The SANDBOX)

No Verla, there is no need for us to ask for His
 forgiveness for having been a part of the
 manufacture of one of the bombs dropped on
 Japan nor for the part played in ushering in the
 "Nuclear Age".

I spent many years stationed in Iwakuni, Japan
 only about 20 k from Hiroshima. I have met
 people who were there when the bomb was
 dropped, people who lost relatives and people
 who had no connection other than being
 Japanese. I have been spat upon, cursed at,
 hugged and shared tears with Japanese
 Nationals. The loss of life and property was sad-
 but the number of lives saved was miraculous! It
 was summed up for me by a retired Japanese
 Major: I had met his daughter at an English Club
 that I taught at and was invited over to their
 home for dinner. I was met at the gate to their
 yard by her mother who told me that it was not
 possible for me to have dinner there. We went
 down and had dinner there. As we talked, I was
 told that her father, who had been in the Army
 during the war would not allow Americans into
 the house. Our friendship continued and her
 mother attended some of the English Club
 meetings. The Japanese decided to throw a party
 for the last meeting that I attended before we
 rotated back to the States. Hiroko and her
 mother were there, accompanied by a very
 distinguished gentleman - I guessed him to be her
 father. As we sat talking, English Clubs were
 actually coffee klatches, Hiroko came up with
 her father and introduced us. I bowed and then
 extended my hand to shake hands (it was our
 club's symbol of the joining of the cultures). He
 paused, then extended his hand to me, and with
 tears in his eyes and in very broken English made
 this statement to me: "I have been a fool! I have
 blamed you for my own stupidity! I could not
 accept that the act that my country committed
 against yours was neither justified nor
 reasonable. I could not accept that, by attacking
 Pearl Harbor, we committed a grievous act that
 could only be interpreted by the people of the
 United States as a most dishonorable thing! Yet
 you and most of the United States Marines here
 in Iwakuni have forgiven us!

By dropping  the bombs on Hiroshima and
 Nagasaki, you saved my life and the lives of most
 of our military, we were already planning a final
 and honorable stand to the death on our Home
 Land. I, my wife and children are alive today
 because of those horrible days. The losses were
 sad, I lost friends that day (when the bomb was
 dropped on Hiroshima), but I now know that
 single act was one of the most honorable ever
 performed by man. Please accept my humble
 thanks and forgive me my arrogance."

I can no longer remember his name, only the
 strength and courage that he showed. I wanted
 to hug him, but instead bowed and told him in
 Japanese that he was welcome. He and his wife
 left shortly thereafter, but Hiroko told me that he
 had spent the past three months learning the
 English in order to put his feelings into words
 that I could understand. I have stored them in my
 heart forever, and when I see demonstrators in
 Japan or the States complaining about Hiroshima
 and Nagasaki, in bring up the image of that man
 and know "the rest of the story".

As for the ecological mess that has been created
 at Hanford: that too will pass. As man grows in
 skills and technology, we tend to focus upon the
 immediate results - that is human. We try to
 foresee any impact upon our world, but we are,
 alas, nearsighted. It is not just with radioactive
 materials, it is with everything. But by realizing
 the good - the number of cancer patients whose
 lives have been saved by radiation treatment, for
 instance; and working to eliminate the bad, we
 will continue to grow.

I hold those memories of early Richland precious
 because they were very special - more idyllic
 than many lives, but special because we were
 given an insight into what is possible for a
 community to be like. The saddest part is that the
 world continues to drift away from that existence
 that we knew. There is too little forgiveness and
 to much recrimination.

We had something great in Richland, something
 that was caused by "the product". Our churches
 were "United Protestant". Our teachers were of a
 quality beyond compare. We could leave our
 doors unlocked and our bicycles laying on the
 front yard. We could stay out until midnight on
 those warm summer nights.

Our goal should be to pass those good things on
 to our children and their children. The bad is
 there, just as there is evil in the world. It is not to
 be ignored, but neither should it be honored by
 making it more important than the good.

God gave us this world to oversee - He knew that
 we would do a terrible job of it, but He had
 enough faith in us to keep us around. He didn't
 have to save Noah and his family but He did. We
 need to make use of the tools that He gave us: an
 open mind and a loving heart. We need to try to
 make this world more like that Richland.

We have seen what the future can be: what we do
 with that insight is up to us. 

                      - Jay Siegel (61)

                               ~ ~ ~

Subj:   A Richland Bomber and Proud of It
>From   Burt Pierard '59
BPierard98@aol.com

RE: "The Nuclear Age: Our Heritage?"
       by Verla Farrens Gardner (61)
       (As seen in issue #62 or The SANDBOX)

The overall tone of your submission appears to
 promote the preposterous concept that if the
 Manhattan Project had not occurred, somehow
 the Nuclear Age would not have happened.  In
 light of the fact that 3 other countries (Germany,
 Japan & USSR) were simultaneously working on
 the same objective, it is absurd to assume that
 scientific discovery would have stopped if the
 U.S. had not participated.  Discovery has a
 momentum of its own and the only difference
 would be that the Nuclear Age would have
 started in another country, probably Japan, which
 even had a bomber on the drawing board to
 deliver their weapon a one-way distance to New
 York City.

I, for one, am sick and tired of people trying to
 make me ashamed of my devoutly patriotic
 parents for uprooting their lives and moving to
 Hanford Camp (1944) with all the basic living
 hardships, to work on an "important war job"
 (quote from the duPont recruiting booklet).  My
 Dad rapidly became a community activist,
 embarking on many projects to improve morale
 in Richland Village and make the community
 more "livable."  These projects included, among
 other things, Charity Drives, War Bond Sales
 Drives, Richland Days Parade Chairman, and
 building The Co-Ordinate Club clubhouse to
 provide a social club for the non-Corps of
 Engineers (they had the Castle Club) residents.

I am not only, not ashamed of my parents and
 town, but I'm damn proud of them and the whole
 unique experience.

In response to your statement about crime in
 Richland, I originally assumed you came to town
 after the essentially crime-free early days of the
 40's & 50's (before the turnover & influx of
 outsiders) but I've been informed by somebody
 who knew you that you were here and should
 have remembered (maybe a Senior Moment?). 
 In any event, the official crime statistics for
 1945, 1946, & 1947 were: zero murders or
 major crimes of violence, one traffic fatality,
 juvenile delinquency 70% below the national
 average, zero relief roll, no vagrants and two
 suicides.  The most remarkable statistic is that
 the City's two jail cells never held a prisoner.

I'm sorry your Richland experience was such a
 bummer and you feel you must conceal your
 origin, but for me, I'm a RICHLAND BOMBER
 and proud of it.

                     - Burt Pierard (59) 

                                ~ ~ ~

Subj:   Why Did They Have To Interfere? 
From:   Mari (Leona Eckert) Leahy, '65
Me12147@aol.com

Concerning the matter of Elian Gonzalas, I only
 want to ask, WHY the government, Reno, & the
 INS felt it necessary to interfere at all?! In my
 humble opinion, Elian's mother lost her life trying
 to bring her son to a country where he would be
 able to have some personal "rights." The fact that
 he survived when his mother didn't makes me
 believe that her wishes for her son's safety should
 have been considered first and foremost. She
 gave her life so that Elian would have a chance
 for life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. I
 can think of absolutely no instances where the
 "head" of a country, and the powers that be in
 another country, have stepped to the forefront
 and DEMANDED the right to decide what is
 best for this young boy, or any other child. This
 was/is a civil matter that should've had the
 chance to be decided by Elian's FAMILY, not
 the governments of either country! For Reno to
 claim that they had no other options is/was bull
 puckey. If the father is this wonderful, warm, and
 loving parent that the governments of two
 countries are trying to sell us on, then WHY did
 it take four months for him to voice any concern
 about having his son returned? What kind of
 circumstances can any of us conceive of that
 would bring two governments well into the
 limelight to correct? Would Clinton or any other
 president of this here United States of America
 DEMAND the return of one of our children if
 the rolls were reversed? I think not. Politics had
 NO business being involved in this "family
 matter." 
                 
    -  Mari (Leona Eckert) Leahy, class of 1965

                                 ~ ~ ~

Subj: I Have Fond Memories of Richland and 
Washington State, But Pennsylvania Ain't Too Bad!
From: Al Parker '53
Adamstreet@aol.com

I'm enjoying my first prelude to summer here
 in Western Pennsylvania, having recently moved
 here from Washington State. How unique and 
 wonderful it is to me to see wild turkeys
 running across the road, deer chasing each other
 across the driveway, ducks coming up from the
 river to be fed, wild rabbits gathering in the yard.
 Chipmunks are all over the place and I am
 watching lanky black squirrels jumping from tree
 to tree as I rest in this carpeted fern-laden forest
 mixed with conifers, oak, maple and other
 deciduous growth.  Wild flowers abound.  Blue
 Jays, woodpeckers, robins, and tiny red-winged
 things are maneuvering, knocking on wood, and
 flitting about. Sunlight streams down filtered,
 through the leaves and branches overhead while
 bird songs fill the air. A hawk is soaring high
 above and humming birds are hovering. 

Dusk is drawing near.  Soon I will hear a rousing
 chorus of frogs and crickets emanating from
 down the river a piece.  One night soon, I will
 view the lightning bugs with delight and
 wonderment.  Perhaps, when they come, I shall
 capture some of their light in my hand.  

Awesome!  A big brown bear is entering the
 clearing now, just a few yards from me.
 Must weigh about 450 pounds. He's sitting
 down now, looking around.  He seems to be
 taking an interest in me... 

Bye...gotta go now!

                       - Al Parker '53

Thank you everyone for you interest and con-
 tributions, and thank you also for all the items
 you've already sent for Issue number 65 of The
 SANDBOX!

Please include your class year, first name, former
 last name (if changed), and current last name
 with all submissions and (on or off) subscription
 requests and send them to: 

            sandbox@richlandbombers.com

            With great regard for all of you,
            -Al Parker '53
           Your Sandbox Moderator In Residence
            (Or something like that.)

                                 - 64 -