Fortunate son

May 21, 2014

Randy Harrison emerged from the Vietnam War unscathed, but with a new appreciation for life

By David Hayes Randy Harrison hugs his dog Burfoot inside his Squak Mountain home. Over his shoulder is a print commemorating one of Harrison’s missions that went wrong yet garnered a Congressional Medal of Honor for helicopter pilot James Fleming, who evacuated Harrison’s squad under heavy fire from North Vietnamese.

By David Hayes
Randy Harrison hugs his dog Burfoot inside his Squak Mountain home. Over his shoulder is a print commemorating one of Harrison’s missions that went wrong yet garnered a Congressional Medal of Honor for helicopter pilot James Fleming, who evacuated Harrison’s squad under heavy fire from North Vietnamese.

Randy Harrison is fascinated by history.

The well-read, 69-year-old Squak Mountain resident is especially interested in Homer’s “The Iliad.”

“Everybody knows about Achilles, Ajax, Agamemnon and Paris. All the characters you hear about,” Harrison said. “Every now and then, if you read Homer, there’s one guy mentioned, one soldier who did something, not the big characters.

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Piloting pandemonium

July 16, 2013

Timber Ridge veteran shares his WWII adventures

As the former pilot of a B-17 bomber named “Pandemonium Reigns” during World War II, Robert Ploss has had his fair share of adventures.

By Greg Farrar Above, Bob Ploss enjoys sharing the stories of the lifelong friendships he made with the men of the B-17 bomber crew he served with during World War II. Below, Ploss (front row, left) and his World War II B-17 crew pose in December 1944 at Drew Field in Tampa, Fla.

By Greg Farrar
Above, Bob Ploss enjoys sharing the stories of the lifelong friendships he made with the men of the B-17 bomber crew he served with during World War II.

The 91-year-old veteran and resident of Timber Ridge recalls his adventures and experiences through life with captivating style, and a knack for storytelling led him to start a monthly newsletter at Timber Ridge, which he calls “The Splinter.” In the newsletter, Ploss shares stories, jokes and poems.

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