June 3, 2014
History Day competitors make it to nationals
Liberty High School student Lorrin Johnson is almost at a loss for words when asked to describe her love of history.
It’s not because she can’t find the words, it’s just that she has so many things to say about her favorite subject, it’s hard to whittle them down to a few coherent sentences.
“Don’t get me started,” she joked. “I’ve gone on rants about it before.”
May 21, 2014
Col. William Geil has a great memory — though he says it’s hard to forget getting captured by Germans behind enemy lines.
The 89-year-old Squak Mountain resident has seen his fair share of service in a career spanning more than three decades. He served overseas in World War II and two tours in Vietnam. His time in the United States Air Force is only made more impressive by the three degrees he earned outside the military. Still, he plays it humble.
“I don’t like bragging,” Geil said about his time as a prisoner of war. Speaking plainly, he said he didn’t find it anything worth bragging about. “I had a cousin that finished 25 missions, while I finished my time in the war in a prison camp.”
May 21, 2014
In a small box that’s usually tucked away in his home library, Issaquah attorney Jerry Pearson has several keepsakes from his three-year stint in the U.S. Marine Corps.
Among the items are a set of dog tags made to commemorate three of his fellow Marines; a brass dragon head he found in a village; and the two Purple Hearts he was awarded for combat-related wounds in Vietnam.
The dragon head, in particular, brings back a flood of memories for Pearson, who was born in Seattle before moving to Issaquah as a small child in 1951. He associates it with Ron Dexter and Lester Bell, two members of the Fifth Marine Division who were shipped to the jungles of Southeast Asia and never came home.
May 21, 2014
Dag Garrett knew he wanted to fly.
It’s why during the tail end of World War II, he joined the U.S. Army Air Corps as a fresh-faced 18-year-old.
Over the course of a year, Garrett transformed into a well-versed navigator, more than eager to hit the skies in support of his country.
He would have to wait though, because just as he was about to deploy, the war came to an end.
May 21, 2014
World War II veteran Hugh Preston was in the U.S. Navy well before he should have been.
“He went behind his father’s back and enlisted and came back and said, ‘I’m gone,’” his daughter Isabella Tobiason said. “He wanted to serve. He wanted to fight for his country.”
He was just 17.
May 13, 2014
Four P-51 Mustangs from the Flying Heritage Collection at Paine Field will do a flyover of Issaquah’s Veterans Memorial Field on June 6, the anniversary of D-Day.
Thirty cities in Washington will get up-close looks at the planes as they fly over.
A time hasn’t yet been set, because the flight plan isn’t finished.
December 10, 2013
B-25 gunner Ed McKee kept the skies clear on WWII European bombing missions
In 1937, Ed McKee was a sophomore in high school, with not enough spending money in his pockets to spread around his hometown of Albany, Ore.
Just seven years later, how he chose to augment his income would eventually take him over the skies of Europe on bombing raids of Axis targets.
December 3, 2013
For the cast and crew putting the final touches on this month’s “White Christmas” musical at Issaquah High School, one of the most enjoyable parts is creating a performance that can be enjoyed by all age groups.
“The thing that makes it so engaging for so many people is everybody knows these songs,” said Holly Whiting, who’s directing her ninth musical at IHS. “These songs are old enough that every generation that’s going to be attending this program is going to be familiar with the music.
“And I think we all have pretty good, happy memories attached to a lot of these songs.”
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.
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.
January 29, 2013
Located just 10 minutes from downtown Issaquah, nestled at the base of Tiger Mountain, sits a neighborhood unlike any other in this community.