Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Schticks of One, Half-a-Dozen of the Other

1. Arlen Specter, Democrat of Pennsylvania?

I believe Watertiger has it nailed on Arlen Specter’s switch to the Democratic party:

Shorter Arlen Specter: I'm gonna get my ass whupped in 2010 if I run as a Republican. Therefore, I shall run on the Democratic ticket, without actually having to VOTE with my new party affiliation.

Yes, Specter has done the right thing a few times, but obviously he's read the writing on the wall: the party of Limbaugh wouldn't elect him if he were the last man on earth, so he's switching sides.

2. Swine Flu

Speaking of Watertiger, she also has what could be the definitive explanation of how this whole swine flu thing got started:

3. New York Fly-by

By now, probably everyone has heard that some MO-ron in the White House and/or FAA thought it would be a great idea to have the backup Air Force One do a fly-by in NYC, allowing the powers that be to get some stock footage of the new plane. Everyone also knows that the same MO-ron(s) – probably in the interests of “national security” – didn’t bother to tell anyone in NYC.

Let’s see… Low-flying jet, chased (apparently) by a fighter, over Manhattan, on a beautiful day. Anybody see a problem with that?

Naw, I didn’t think so.

4. South Carolina Wild Fire

It appears – and I emphasize appears, as no definite cause has yet been established – that the wildfire plaguing South Carolina might have been started by a burn pile smoldering for a few days. The man whose burn pile has been mentioned has been receiving death threats.

His name? Torchi.

I swear, you can’t make this stuff up.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

RIP: Richard Scheidt

Via FireGeezer, I learned today that Richard Scheidt died on Monday at the age of 81.

Who, you may ask, was Richard Scheidt?

We all know that "a picture is worth a thousand words." Some pictures, however, are worth much, much more. Some pictures capture the very essence of a scene far better than words ever could. The famous photo of the second jetliner hitting the World Trade Center is one of those pictures. So is the photo of the Oklahoma City firefighter carrying Baylee Almon from the rubble of the Murrah building.

Another is this photo of Richard Scheidt:

Scheidt was a Chicago fire fighter. On December 1, 1958, a fire occurred at Our Lady of Angels School, a Catholic school. The fire began about 2:42 PM, just 18 minutes before school would have been dismissed.

When the fire was out, 92 school children and three nuns were dead. Chicago American photographer Steve Lasker snapped this picture of Scheidt removing the body of ten-year-old John Jajkowski. Scheidt also pulled 19 other dead children from the building.

This picture became the icon for the entire tragedy, and was on the cover of Life magazine on December 15, 1958.

Scheidt retired from CFD as a captain, in 1986. Memories of the fire haunted him throughout his life.

Captain Scheidt leaves behind his wife, nine children, 28 grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.