Friday, February 29, 2008

Taking a Leap/Captain Hair
















Can't really say I ever remember a February 29th....at least not where anything special has happened....just another day in this miserable weather of late winter 2007-08. More snow last night, just a couple of inches, which it appears will turn to slush as the temps rise into the mid 30s. Looking at the extended forecast for western Ohio, I see nothing that looks like a hint of spring, except maybe this coming Sunday, when the prediction is mid 40s and partly cloudy skies....the rest of the 10 days calls for snow/snow showers and temps from highs in the upper 20s to upper 30s. Calling Al Gore..."Where the Hell is Global Warming when you need it?"
Have been visiting Buck's site:



And Buck has been posting some old black and white photos from his Air Force days, including some that shows the various hair styles he sported. I was pretty much a crew cut type of guy back in the late 50s and early 60s....even after the Beatles, came around I stuck with short hair until my Junior year in High School, then I let it grow....finally giving up the close cut short hair, until I was shipped off to Basic Training at Amarillo AFB, Texas. There, 40 years ago this summer, I got my last buzz cut.....for the next 4 years it was a constant battle with the Air Force, all over hair.

After returning from Vietnam and getting hosed out of my MAC Law Enforcement assignment at Griffiss, AFB, NY...I became a dyed in the wool trouble maker for the next 20 months....much of that was dedicated to keep as much hair, mustache length, and sideburns, as I could....I really didn't care, I just wanted to buck the system, and piss off as much brass as I could. It all seems rather silly now, but it was a challenge and fun back then....I'm sure if my former Flight Chief "Taco" Joe Gomez is still around, he wouldn't be laughing, even today...Ol' Joe tried to slap me with an Article 15 for refusing to get a haircut....problem for him was, I had gotten one, and went to the on base legal beagles for advice....bottom line, I won, Joe lost, and a month later Gomez was shipped off to Germany....sorry Joe!(not).

These days, my hair is about the same as my AF days....except in the summer, when I cut it a little shorter, as the old saying goes, "I may be old, but thank God, I've still got my hair"!


Sam headed up to Elkhart yesterday, picked up his RV for delivery to southern California, got a couple miles out of town and had to take it back....same fuel line problems he had with the one to Vegas last month....so he spent the night in Goshen, Indiana, and will try again today....I think he's ready for baseball season....Hoosier Transit called me and asked if I would take one to Cleveland...."nope", was my answer..."but next week, if you've got one to Vegas or Florida, I'll give my back a try" I just don't want a long return in the Jeep....If I can get a decent flight out of Las Vegas or a warm climate, for a decent price, I'll pick up some extra cash for beer and cigars, why not?

So we will see what happens with that.


photos-my Military ID Card, with buzz cut from Basic Train in early July 68, love it 5' 9" and 140 lbs. I actually think I was 135 when I joined up, by the time I shipped off to Vietnam, one year later, I was 5' 11" and 180..... the "all dressed up photo"is from Dover, early 1969 before shipping out to Nha Trang....my hair would get nothing but longer from this point for the rest of my tour...other photos, My College ID photo....didn't come out great, but the "shadow" behind my head is really hair, looking like some kind of far left radical from the weather underground, nothing was further from the truth, I was a right wing nut, even back in 1975 at the age of 26...and the photo from my Celina High School yearbook, Senior mugshot.










Thursday, February 28, 2008

February Wanes/Airplanes/and Hawks
















February has probably always been my least favorite month. Nothing really except the weather is the reason. Although the shortest month, even with this year being "leap" year and being 29 days....tomorrow will end this most boring of all the calender pages.

The reason February is slow in my mind, is basically because, there is still little to do outside. Baseball is a month away, we usually start umpiring in late March, this year being the 31st due to Easter being early....I always looking forward to fishing season, the past few years I have not done much much drowning of bait, but plan on looking for some new fishing holes this season. With our Grand Lake becoming no longer viable to catch anything but Carp, the fishing season still seems many weeks away, the poles are ready, but unless I try Ice Fishing, which I won't, I will be awhile getting out to the water. Even when living in Wisconsin, Ice fishing never really appealed to me, sitting in a semi-heated shack, breathing in fumes from kero heaters reminded me to much of my Security Police days in the dead winter of northern New York....cold weather fishing is not my thing, give me 75 degrees and light winds....only thing I ever enjoyed doing in the snow was skiing back in New York in the early 1970s and northern Wisconsin in the later 70s and 80s.

Basically February is for getting your house, outdoor equipment, and body in physical shape for the coming spring and summer, turning 59 this March, I'm sure it will take even longer than usual, especially since I've spent the fall and winter battling Spinal Stenosis.....speaking of which, since the low point in November until the epidural the week before Christmas, the progress had been slow and steady in January and February...reaching what I thought was 80% last week....after using the snow blower and doing some shoveling this past week, it slipped back a bit, but still compared to the week before Christmas....there is no comparison, I actually can enjoy life again, hopefully the improvement will last. Blood Pressure has been in the 125/70 range and better, as I continue with the prescription, the weight loss has begun, down about 5 pounds in the past 2 weeks, and the mobility is pretty good, although I am not quite ready to go out and do a 5 mile walk. I have been walking most days, and lifting weights in the basement 3 or 4 days a week....it's been strictly a repetition regiment rather than the "pumping iron" days of my past.

Sam is getting ready to head out to Santa Fe Springs, California, with a Damon RV for delivery.....should get there Monday for the fly back. Yesterday I headed down to Columbus to pick him up, as luck would have it, the same time our Marxist in training President to be Barack Hussein Obama was at Ohio State, although I missed the traffic, I couldn't help noticing the smell from his supporters permeating the Capital City and University area....OK nuff' political comment....Sam ended up in Columbus rather than Dayton because of the delays in flights out of Philadelphia...he arrived in Cleveland Tuesday night about 10 minutes before his Dayton flight, but by the time he got to the gate, the doors were locked and Sam and a few others were left without a flight to Dayton until Wednesday morning...instead he grabbed a flight to Columbus and stayed with a friend....his bags went to Dayton, but Continental did the right thing and drove them the 75 miles to Celina last night, and dropped them off at the house.

Last night Garry, Sam, and I, made the snowy 23 mile trip to Van Wert for the 2nd of 7 local umpire rules meetings, you need to make at least 4...

Back to February though...this February, along with the recent studies have pretty much put a dent into the Global Warming nonsense....records snows, record cold, and the fact that this winter, worldwide, the temperature cooling has negated the warming "gain" of the past 65 years....I wonder if that idiot Al Gore will give back his Oscar? There I go with politics again....The bottom line is...I AM SICK OF WINTER, I'M READY FOR SPRING!


photos-The back yard feeders in this extended season has been getting a work out, the ever present sparrows are always there, rain, shine, or snow storm, the 5 or 6 back yard squirrels have been getting there share of bird seed and tossed out cereal. Meanwhile a pair of Cardinals and a Robin or two have joined the fray. I have not seen the Hawk for a few days and I noticed this morning when in the garage, that the Pigeons have returned.....I thinking the Hawk needs to return for a feeding.....the back yard population and my fishing poles, ready for spring...cleaned, oiled, and re-lined.




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After posting this a couple of hours ago....our Hawk returned, and I shot the two photos shown about as he was feeding on a sparrow who was not quick enough.....we have a few hundred of those little buggers, so not much of a loss there.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Another Fine Mess!




Since I've lived in Ohio some 40 of my 59(coming up in March) years, I cannot remember a February with this much snow....I've seen cold February days, icy days, and snowy days, in the second month of the year, but this one just for 3 to 5 inch snow falls on a daily basis, has to be the tops.

Another winter storm warning was put into the forecast last night....once again, not really a "storm" in my eyes, but we did end up with a couple of inches of the heavy wet stuff overnight and a couple more of the lighter variety(less moisture) this morning. Schools ended up cancelled, and I'm sure the roads will ice up tonight, as wet as this stuff is. I made it to Greenville, less snow more cold rain the further south you go...meanwhile north and north west of here in Ohio and northeast Indiana, they have about 8 inches.

Sam delivered the RV to New Jersey yesterday, but could not catch a flight out to Dayton...so he stayed with a friend out that way and planned on flying out of Philly later this afternoon, making a connection in Cleveland and then arriving in Dayton tonight about 10....I planned on picking him up then, since his car is here in Celina.....got a feeling that may not happen, Cleveland may get a foot of the white stuff, and my guess is, either the flight to the John Hopkins Airport gets delayed or canceled....if he does get into Cleveland, he'll probably get stuck there.....guess we will play that by ear.

Patricia being off from school due to the "storm" shoveled the sidewalks...the driveway will have to wait. Given the weight of the heavy wet snow, the snow blower is not a good mix in the driveway, tossing up stones and sloppy wet half frozen liquid.


More later...................




{photos- looking out my front porch, then again along our west side of the house....you get a feel for the liquidity of the snow event}.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Dartball...end of the season




Have not spent much time around the house or the computer this weekend....Patricia has been doing her student reports, wrap-ups, etc.....so I've stayed away for the most part....always good to get away from the computer, of course that is easier to do in nice weather, February has been a bear of sorts.




We all got up early, Patricia and Anissa headed to church, Sam and I took off for Nappanee, he needed to pick up a BT Cruiser Class C RV for Lakewood, New Jersey, and we needed to get back for the first round of the season ending Dartball League Tournament, before 3 PM. We left at 8AM and made the 250 mile round trip, plus RV pick-up in less than 5 hours.
Dartball luck(bad) as we went up against or main South Division rivals....Mount Carmel....they have manhandled us this year....we were 0-6 against them as they won both halves of the season, while we finished 2nd.... after today we are now 0-8 against them....and will finish thus.

Not a good year, team or personal wise, hovering around the .500 mark, but that's what happens when you lose one of the main players to 2nd shift, another(me) starts the season with major back problems, and you get 3 new players that have never played Dartball before....so we move on from here, and see what happens with a revised team and some more experience from the new players next year.

After 12 straight .400 plus batting average season, I had my second lowest all time(I batted .286 my first year)...hitting .320 with 20 RBIs....still good enough to make the All-Star team for year 13 in a row....but a down season for me, none-the-less. I am joined on the team by Martin, one of the original players from when the league was formed in 1938....Martin turns 90 years young this year, and still managed to hit .329 with 18 RBIs for the season......not bad for anybody, but for someone born in 1918....amazing to say the least. So one more shot this season, as the 12 members of the South All-Stars take on the North on March 10th.

Other than that not much to report.....lots of e-mails from folks I've never met.....Sam left after Dartball for Jersey...hoping to get there by tomorrow afternoon, and getting a cheap flight to Dayton. The back was a little sore yesterday, snow blower use may have been the culprit...but after a sore start this morning, it is fine at this time.....no work in Greenville tomorrow, down to 1 day a week(Tuesdays) for now. That is OK, since baseball season preparation and getting into shape will be on going for the next month....Hal now has just 3 weeks left of school at Wright State....he will graduate with a BA in High School History Education next month....but after doing some substitute teaching in and around Dayton this spring, he will begin work on his Masters in July....He will march in Graduation in early June, which happens to be the same day as one of the nieces gets married in Celina....Molly will marry a local kid(man, they are both in their early 30s)....Aaron a former starting Center for the Ohio University football team, and former All-State lineman at Celina. He is now the Defensive Line Coach at Hillsdale College in Michigan....those 2 events come right after I head to Messick, Michigan for the annual pre Memorial Day Mushroom hunt, with Pearson and his sons.

Enough ramblings.......back tomorrow.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Losing My Marbles!




My Grandmother Houseworth passed away in April 1975 at the age of 91...she outlived a couple of Husbands, 2 sons, including my dad, and was a hard core Christian and Republican to the end. Her two daughters, Cecile and Mary Eva, a couple of Classics, lived with her(both had been childless but married and divorced) in the small town of Scott, Ohio. Cecile passed away in 1991 at the age of 90, Eva died in 1998 at 87.


They were classic pack rats, and right wing women's libbers, long before today's gutless left wing women even thought of the word....as I like to say, upon meeting today's Hillary and Obama's big mouth wife, they would probably kick their asses first and ask questions later.....anyway, they were also major league pack rats. After Eva entered a nursing home in Van Wert in 1995, I was "elected" to take care of her affairs(me being the only one working near Scott, and 1 of only 2, along with sister Marty, living in Ohio).


These women had a collection of everything....junk, collectibles, antiques, sea shells from Florida, and any and everything in between stored in the house that was originally built in 1839....after Eva died, it took months to sort out the good from the bad, and some, I never could figure out....I've still got a few thousand items, antiques, and collectibles in my garage and basement...some I sold, some I gave to the other Nieces and Nephews and some I kept.


The title of this post concerns a couple of thousand Marbles....if like me, you are a child of the 50s, I'm sure you had a collection of marbles....I remember growing up in Venice, Florida, my buddy the late Mike Graff and I, along with the other neighborhood kids would play marbles for hours...I became pretty good...one of the few things that I could beat Graff at...he was better at basketball and bowling(although I was pretty damn good for my age, he was a little better). The collection I have from Grandma Houseworth is a good variety, although way too many "clear" types....a few hundred "cat eyes" and others to go with them. If you check EBAY, marbles can go for quite a price these days...unlike baseball cards(I also have thousands) they have held their value and increased.......I, however, would be glad to part with mine for a full box of Arturo Fuentes Don Carlos #2 Cigars...those favorites of mine run about $300 for a box of 25....even a little too much for my blood....I get one on occasion, at $12 to $14 a stick.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Baseball Season?











Last night Garry and I drove the 23 miles to Van Wert for our first local umpire association meeting of the pre season. 7 meetings on rules interpretation, you have to sign in for at least 4....Sam, on his way to Baltimore didn't make it...in fact he's still in Maryland this morning...getting stuck in a snow event that left him short of the Baltimore docks before the 2PM delivery close time yesterday...he will drop it off this morning and probably Greyhound(ugh!) it home across the Allegheny Mountains tonight.

With the weather outside at 10 above and 4 or 5 inches of fresh snow on the ground, it sure doesn't feel like baseball season....but March 31st it begins, so we played a little Baseball Jeopardy last night...splitting up into 4 groups and answering questions ranging from $100 to $500 depending on how tough they were...base running, pitching, dead ball/live ball, Misc, and Bullshit, were the categories.....I was the spokesman and answer man for team #4....we got fooled on a $400 BS question...and sat in 3rd place going into Final Jeopardy....tough question about illegal use of detached equipment....we got it right and the 2 teams ahead of us missed it....sending us into victory lane.....claiming the prizes of a new home plate brush for each team member.....made the 90 minutes go pretty quick.

This morning I dug out all the equipment took a look at it, will "Febreze" it, pack it back into the equipment bag....then take the shirts, jackets, and pants, and make sure they still fit....since I've lost the 7 pounds, the fit should be OK...I'm at the same weight(within a couple of pounds) as I was at the beginning of last season.....still need to lose 10 more before the season begins....just to help with my mobility.

I took Reagan the Airedale to the vet this morning for her monthly allergy injection....took the picture of the frozen lake...temp was at zero this morning...but the crystal clear skies last night made the full eclipse of the moon a great view.

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{Photos-The cat checks out my equipment and making sure the baseball clothes are ready to go.....and the non baseball weather look of Grand Lake on this late February morning}

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Being a 10 year member of the Vietnam Security Police Association(VSPA), I have seen our organization of Air Force Security Police veterans from the Vietnam(including those stationed in Thailand) "Conflict" grow from a handful at its inception as a shoot off of the Vietnam Dog Handlers Association in the mid 1990s, to the 1100 members and growing it is today.

Being a growing organization with the youngest members at around 53 to the older members in their 70s and 80s, we know our growth will end and our numbers will start to shrink...just happens....if you didn't serve in the war, you are not gonna be a member, and let's face it, ain't nobody serving in Vietnam from the Air Force today...so just like life itself, we will die out.


We have had our battles, just like any large or small family....I have been at the center of some, a trouble maker I have been, just like my Air Force days....always trying to see all members get a fair shake, not just some of the chosen leaders....chosen by maybe 5% of the organization at our annual reunions....last year a group of us put our foot down and challenged they way things were getting done and how the leaders were chosen. At the Annual Reunion in DC in November our Ad Hoc Committee which I chaired from the cozy confines of cyberspace were voted on....and hopefully come this years get together in Albuquerque, New Mexico, our changes will be realized.....or at least given a chance.

One change we did ask for was our quarterly newsletter "Guardmount" be revived...with quite a few members still not being "on line" the newsletter had been off line for almost 2 years....thus leaving many members with no access to the views, bulletin boards, agent orange issues, deaths, prayers, etc from the members who had internet access.

I am happy to say a small group of true "make it happen" VSPA members got together and put together a slick and well put together issue that was just mailed out to all members(and is available in color at the web site for members as well)....

Congrats Guys! Despite me and others still pushing and bitching....on this one you did well.

I have pissed some of you off during the past year, for that I make no apology, but you have my salute on this one.

http://www.vspa.com/

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{Photo- The New Look VSPA Guardmount Volume 12 Issue #1--VSPA "We Take Care of Our Own"

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Another Weather Forecast Blunder




After posting the below photos and rant....the snow continued to come down, with some wind it looked like about 4 inches of dry, lite, stuff....so I headed out to sweep and shovel the walks.....about half way through I said to myself "The Hell With This"....went to the garage and fired up the snow blower, I have not used it since last winter, but Patricia has....with the back problems, I figured better not to risk it....the tossing this good sized machine around would not have been good a month or two ago....but it started right up and I did the dirty work, the back feels no ill effects, so far.......


This is how far I've come since the Epidural Injection....by no means 100%...but at least 75 to 80 per cent better than it was Christmas week and before........I feel ready for Baseball Season....that story tomorrow.

Tonight we have our first local meeting in Van Wert, Garry Mosier and I will head north, Sam will miss the first meeting, as he is on his way to Baltimore, Maryland, with a RV..going to the docks with one that will be shipped off to Europe. We have 7 local meetings, you need to attend 4 local rules meetings to stay licensed(plus the one State Meeting we attended last week)....Sam should have no problem getting to 4 of the next 6.

{photos-The Yard Machine in the Drive Way..if you notice I used a "flash" when taking these 2 digital photos...note the flash hitting the flakes as they float down...pretty cool I thought}


I have a long drive way, and it's not paved, it has a few tons of high quality "pea gravel"...so the "Snow Machine" is set up a half inch high to avoid the tossing of rocks at the cars and house...but sometimes you pick some up anyway....always a challenge.






















Last week the ever-so-accurate weather folks were calling for 5 to 9 inches of the white stuff and had another "Winter Storm Warning" out for the west Ohio area....they blew it, and nobody complained. Last night they were calling for 10 degrees with mixed snow "showers"....instead we got about 3 inches of the fluffy white stuff....the highway crews were not ready, so the roads are a slippery mess......think I'll go back to reading the "Farmers Almanac" and forget the weather channel.

The stuff is light enough I won't have to dig out the blower though and a push broom should do the trick....back later.

{Various Photos this morning of the overnight "dusting"}

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Marvin Kuhns-The Final Chapter


















Isn't this just dandy? Spent 2 or 3 hours off and on writing the final Chapter of Marvin Kuhns demise, I add the above photograph, and 'zap' Blogger deletes the whole damn she-bang....except the photo of 1910 Scott, Ohio. Never saved it auto or whatever, only thing I can figure out is that when I used the "spell check" from my tool bar, something happened to the text and it is gone.
Not sure if I'm up to re-writing this episode....so I will for now give a short version.
Marvin, after getting out of the Ohio Pen, married and move home to Noble County, Indiana....within 2 years was back at horse stealing....stole a horse and buggy near St Marys, Ohio, and high tailed it into Van Wert County, stole again, and was hunted down by Sheriff Fred Hott near Scott, Ohio(my home until I turned 5)....after a shootout, he was finally tracked down and shot by a posse in Union Township....was taken to Scott, treated, and then made the 9 mile trek with officials to Van Wert, where he died Sunday evening around 11PM at the Van Wert Jail.....this on June 2, 1907.
His widow made the trip to Van Wert the following Tuesday, claimed the body, and old Marvin was taken back to Indiana and buried.
And I can't believe that whole damn post was zapped...thanks Blogger!
The point of the story however lives....all of Marvin's stuff...pistols he used in his final getaway, death bed photos, and original newspapers of his crimes are in my family possessions today.....so even 100 years after Marvin Kuhns' demise, a little of him still lives.
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Photo above is the Scott Elevator and Grist Mill around 1910-1915(anybody know the date of the auto in photo?).....The Elevator is still at the same location today, it has burned to the ground a couple of times since the photo...the last being in 1960....but the Elevator still is the focal point of this small northwestern Ohio town.
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Sunday, February 17, 2008

February 17, 1979







Today has dawned(well not yet, it only 6:48AM) a steady rain, with temps hovering around the 40 degree range...that will change tonight and the rain will change to a snow mix sometime after midnight....the ugly February continues........

The weather is not like 29 years ago on 12/17/79, when it was about 10 degrees with a steady light snow....I had broadcast a Sectional/District High School Wrestling Tournament in Wausau(WI) the night before, and Patricia, despite being 9 months pregnant, went with me....it was a "remote" broadcast, where basically I wrote down the scores, and fed them back to the radio station, WJMT in Merrill, giving the local schools updates and standings....I had only been a "jock" for several months and any chance I got to do sports was taken....since the extra pay helped, and it was what I wanted to do in broadcasting anyway...spinning records was fun, but my interests leaned more to News and Sports.

We woke up the next morning, a Saturday, to the typical northern Wisconsin February scene...cold, wind, and a little snow. Patricia started cleaning, which I thought was strange....not the part about her cleaning, because she kept a clean house, but the timing....being a to-be first time father, I really didn't know much, but I had heard of the "nesting instinct", and I guessed that was what was going on....she denied that, but as the day continued, she began to have contractions that were fairly far apart. Still thinking it was a false labor, which she had before, Patricia protested that this was nothing and her time was not at hand.....I thought different, but did not say much....finally about 3 O'clock despite her protests, I was convinced it was indeed "that time"....and as the pain bouts became closer and closer together, I talked her into getting ready...and from here the time line get blurred.


We grabbed her bag of goods and loaded into the Jeep Cherokee, all the while she still protested that this was nothing...anyway off we went into the frozen afternoon, heading south towards Wausau(we lived about 12 miles north on the Marathon-Lincoln County Line Road)...we got to Wausau South Hospital in plenty of time, and Patricia was prepped and eventually wheeled into the delivery room. { As I described in the previous post about Anissa on December 19, 2007}:



{The delivery room doctor was slow getting there, and Patricia went through an unwelcome waiting period, which today we suspect, but don't know for sure, that was to affect Anissa and cause some of her conditions today.....that is not the point, however, you can't go back, and nothing we could do would change Anissa, and I'm not sure we want to.....her handicaps are part of who she is and who we are, and that story can be read at the above link.}

After the delivery, at 6:59PM which saw another Houseworth girl(at that time I was the last male Houseworth born some 30 years earlier in 1949). My mom now had 5 granddaughters and no grandsons, that would change when Sam was born in late 1981.


As I said, things were a blur, but I do remember heading back to the farm alone....Saturday night....I had calls to make, but basically I sat in front of the small TV(we were not big television watchers, even then) had a beer or two, and just reflected, just me and the Airedales Rags and Max....can't really remember about what, but the whole evening had a pretty surreal effect about it. So I was a first time dad at the age of 29 years, 11 months, and 1 day......I can't imagine having kids at 20 or so....that would not have been for me...Hell I still was no where near a grown adult at 30.


The next day, a Sunday, Daytona 500 Sunday to be exact, dawned sunny and cold....I headed to Wausau to spend the day with wife and daughter...and take photos for the album and for my family back in Ohio and hers in southeast Wisconsin. And with today being another Daytona Beach race day, I can say I remember that one as clear as a bell....Patricia and Anissa slept much of the afternoon, and I sat and watched the greatest 500 ever.....not a big race fan am I, but that was the first "live" broadcast and was the one where my favorite driver Richard Petty won as Cale Yarborough and Bobby Allison crashed each other out on the final turn...the Allison boys, Bobby and his brother Donnie, got into a dandy of a fight with Yarborough...live on CBS, as King Richard swept past them and crossed the line a winner...again!

That's the way it was 29 years ago this very weekend....Happy Birthday Anissa!

Next I finish up the tale of the Outlaw Marvin Kuhns____________

{photos-Me with Anissa at the Hospital on February 18, 1979, Patricia and Anissa in 1981, Anissa and Rags 1980}

Friday, February 15, 2008

October 20, 2011--The Outlaw Marvin Kuhns part deux from the Rant in February 2008...

 After the two weeks of near perfect fall weather that kicked off October, reality has set in....yesterday being on of the most miserable days in recent memory, at least weather wise...48 may have been the high, and consistent and steady rains through out the day....

However all wasn't lost:  My old buddy Dick Finke, up from Florida for a few weeks, before heading back to the sunny Gulf Shores stopped by.  We grabbed coffee and soup for lunch at a small local coffee house....then headed out towards one of the north side of Grand Lake bars, where we downed a couple of beers, him with Bud, me with a couple of long neck bottles of Sam Adams Octoberfest.  We ended up at his son Ross's place, then finally dinner with Ross and his girlfriend at a local golf course side restaurant.  By the time I arrived home, I didn't have much interest in the opening game of the World Series...good thing too, since the hated Cardinals took game #1 by a 3-2 count of the Texas Rangers....game #2 is tonight in St. Louis....

I will be at Paulding, in the rain and mud, for a Junior High game...the conditions, if they play the game, will not be pleasant....

Today will mark part 2 of my Early 1998 blog post about Marvin Kuhns...It appears I finally have figured out how to get the entire story on with having to use links....my learning process on Blogger, despite 4 1/2 years of doing this, is still a learning process....

enjoy part 2:


Marvin Kuhns...the Indiana/Ohio Outlaw part 2____

Dad came into possession of Marvin Kuhns' pistols and the other material pertaining to the outlaw sometime around 1970....dad passed away on Christmas Eve 1972. For the last 10 years of his life the old man had become interested in antique collecting, and became quite good at going to auctions...bring home boxes of what we thought were "junk" or tables and other funiture that cluttered up the garage. What at that time I didn't know(although mom sure did), Stan Houseworth knew what he was looking for....he had an eye for what was valuable, even if others couldn't see it. When he passed away at the age of 55 of a sudden heart attack on December 24, 1972, he left quite a collection of collectibles and antiques.

I began an interest in the collectibles part of his hobby when my dad's sister Aunt Eva passed away.....some of the stuff I sold off a few years ago, I could kick myself for doing.....but hindsight is 20-20. Anyway, on to Marvin Kuhns part 2.

Marvin Kuhns, a desperado, born in Noble County, Indiana, in 1867 had a speciality....he was a horse thief, he came from a good solid family, so the stories go, and had a decent education for those days. That all come to a sudden end, in a battle of bullets on Sunday June 2, 1907.

After a life of crime...burglary, horse thievery, and finally murder....Kuhns was put on trial in northern Ohio, at the Seneca County Courthouse in Tiffin, Ohio. The date was June 22, 1891....Marvin was accused of killing his partner in crime(another horse thief) William Campeau, on November 16, 1890. Kuhns was captured in Churubusco, Indiana(a town I travel through on many occasions), near his home town on December 6th...he was captured after a shootout on the main street of that northeast Indiana city....he was arrested by an off duty Fort Wayne(IN) police officer...in addition to the murder, Marvin also had warrents out for his hide, for stealing horses in Noble County....Marvin was in a fix, even if he got off for the killing, he was going to jail back in Indiana.

Much disagreement still rests today if Kuhns was the actual killer, or if even the extradition to Ohio was legal and above board.....regardless, he was tried and found guilty...after all Marvin Kuhns had a past, and even as a teenager had broken out of the county jail in Albion, Indiana, on 3 seperate occasions. Guilty he was, according to the jury, and he was sentenced to the Ohio Penitentiary...the sentence was "life at hard labor".

The sentence, like some today, really didn't mean life....Ol' Marvin, with the help of his girlfriend/advocate, Kate Hagans petitioned the Governor of Ohio, Myron Herrick for his release....and on July 25, 1905, Marvin Kuhns was pardoned by the Ohio Pardon Board, with the approval of Herrick. He returned to Albion and married Kate a short time later.

Marvin's life as a free man however could not erase his past and his personality issues...he returned to the life of being a horse stealing outlaw......it would be his ultiimate demise, in less than 2 years Kuhn would make the mistake of stealing a horse and buggy, and making his way through my birth county, Van Wert, Ohio.....that would be his last mistake on this earth, and make for some great items and stories that he would leave behind.



That final chapter is next___________

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Photos-Sheriff Fred Hott's .38 Smith and Wesson, manufactured in 1905, still in near mint condition today, it was used to end the run of Marvin Kuhns, as described in the June 7, 1907 article in the Van Wert(Ohio) Times Bulletin....




Thursday, February 14, 2008

The Life and Times of the Outlaw Marvin Kuhns


Since I got involved in genealogy research some 10 years ago, that interest in my family history has branched out in the lives of many famous and infamous folks. Not Presidents or actors, sports stars, etc...but everyday folks, some good, some bad, including many members of the Houseworth family, which can be found at my family genealogy blog:

http://israelhouseworth.blogspot.com/

The mid to late 1800s and early 20th Century are of most interest, I think because that was the early age of photography, and people were documenting anything and everything if they had access to a camera.

One of the non-family persons I have done much research on is a man named Marvin Kuhns, Kuhns was born in Noble County Indiana in 1867. He started his life of crime around the age of 13...became a horse thief, burgler, and eventually was convicted of murder in Fostoria, Ohio, for killing his horse stealing partner, a man named William "Old Bill" Campeau, of Monroe, Michigan, in 1890....he was given a life sentence at hard labor, but was pardoned by Ohio Governor Myron T. Herrick in 1905, he shortly thereafter went back to his life of crime.

All-in-all Kuhns spent more than half of his life in jail and prison, including the Noble County Jail, where slick Marvin escaped from on 3 occasions.

Marvin was finally gunned down by Sheriff Hott of Van Wert County, Ohio....my birth place. There are 2 books about Kuhns, numerous articles that can be found on the internet, just Google Marvin Kuhns, and several items will be popped up.

My interest revolves around the items my dad, Stan Houseworth, purchased at an auction around 1970...those items included 2 of the outlaw's weapons...a couple of .38 Smith and Wesson handguns, from the series produced in 1890 and 1898...these guns are in mint condition. The family also has the entire line of Van Wert Newspapers from early June 1907, still in pretty good shape today, 100 years after they were printed and he was shot down.....and the "Death Bed" photo of old Marvin(pictured above)....his eyes may be open, but Marvin was dead as a stone when they shot this photo.

Tomorrow, I will have more on the story of Marvin....the only thing I won't do is post the photos of the S&Ws....I don't trust the government, and even though these guns are legal, who knows how far down the road, that may not be the case.....especially with the cast of "outlaws" that are running for President, not to mention those that run the State of Ohio. Not good to put out to much information when down the road, you never know. But anyway.........................

Tomorrow________The story of the Outlaw, Marvin Kuhns.

Today was the one warm(35 and sunny) for the next week. Usually February is pretty ugly, weather wise, and this looks to be even worse than usual. Worked my 4th day this week at Greenville...not used to getting up early 4 days in a row, not that I mind it, when driving the RV runs, I usually get out of the sack at 3AM and am on the road by 4....less traffic and drunks on the roads at that time.

Completed my spring baseball seaons schedule today....for the first time I can remember, I have no dates open between March 31st and May 20th...depending on tournament contracts, it may go longer than that....the only exceptions are Sundays through the season....few games are played on Sunday, but there are a few Sunday dates on occasion. I am Scheduled to do 35 Varsity, 5 Junior Varsity and 6 Freshman games(double headers in Celina, less weekend travel that way), I am working with oldest son Sam on about 15 dates, the most we have worked together.....keeping my fingers crossed and my workouts fresh, that my back holds out.....if it does, we will work on the summer American Legion and ACME schedule.


{photo}-Marvin Kuhns on his death bed in Van Wert County , June 2, 1907.




Wednesday, February 13, 2008

On the Road...Again







Long day today....worked a couple of hours in Greenville this morning, then back home, did the spread sheet send off, and then Sam and I were off to Elkhart, Indiana. His car has been located either at Elkhart or Nappanee since January 8th....depending on which location he was driving/delivering RVs out of....everytime he was ready to pick up his Stratus, the weather or air fares would not cooperate, so he flew into Dayton. But after bitching around about not having his vehicle, I finally had the time, and the weather to take him to northern Indiana this morning. Not knowing what to expect as far as snow on the ground, and if his car was buried....we loaded the jumper cables and shovels into the trunk and off we went, it's a 157 mile trip, one way? The trip up US 127 to US 30, I-469/69 and then finally the Indiana Tollway was made in 2 1/2 hours....when we got there Sam had to do a little digging out from the plow work, but his car fired right up and back we came.....all in all, a 12 hour day(no big deal) and a total of 390 miles between the Greenville route and Elkhart and back.....my back survived, but after only about 5 hours sleep, and another early rise for my 4th Greenville day this week, I am beat.....I know, it's sad, here I am basically retired from any real work, and here I am bitching about being tired.



Anyway, did get to watch my favorite college basketball team, the Duke Blue Devils, go to 22-1 on the year, with a 12 point win vs Maryland tonight. Last night we had the State(Ohio) Umpire rules meeting down in Piqua, Sam, Gary Mosier, and I made that trip through the icy roads, including I-75, and got our mandatory state meeting in....next week we start our local meetings, 4 are required to keep your license current.....usually we have about an hour and a half of rules talk, and retire to the local Pizza Hut to discuss baseball and have pizza and a couple of beers.



So that's been the life the past few days...


I have been working on a story concerning a regional "Outlaw" and hopefully will post part of that tomorrow....this story goes back to the early 1900s and is interesting for the most part, because it took place near my family birthplace, and dad purchased this guy's guns and other memorabilia a couple of years before dad passed on.....more on that tomorrow.

On the trip up and back today, Sam and I listened to Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh....don't listen to that much talk radio these days, but I do like Beck, and still enjoy Rush on occasion....the main talk was about Barack Obama and the love affair the morons of this country seem to have with this Marxist bastard....this guy has no experinece, and is pure evil as far as I'm concerned....but you put him and Hillary in a hat, who would you want to pull out? Both or either one will run this country into bankruptcy, or a take over by Radical Islam or Red China....not sure McCain is much better...and frankly approacing 59, I'm not sure I really am that worried....America is on the edge, and we've made our own bed, so what happens, happens. All I can say is, fill your basement with a good supply of what you might need and lock and load.



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More tomorrow......................{photos} Duke vs North Carolina last year's ACC Tournament....The Blue Devils knocked Tyler Hansborough on his ass, and broke his nose, but UNC won the game....The #2 ranked Dookies lead the league this year and are 1-0 against the hated Tar Heels.
Last season youngest Hal, a senior at Wright State University in Dayton, got us tickets to the NCAA Tournament opening round in Buffalo, NY....lucky for us, both WSU and Duke were playing in the same bracket on the same night....{and not playing each other}....so off to upstate New York we went....here I am 58 years old, sitting with all the college kids from Wright State...we had a great time, and made the trip up and back in about 20 hours, with no sleep between the 2 of us.....the only downer was The Raiders lost to Pittsburgh right after the Blue Devils were upset by VMI.....but the atmosphere was outstanding.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Another Storm Goes Bust!


You gotta wonder how these so-called "experts" on the Weather Channel and elsewhere can collect a check?




The "White Death" was headed our way...6-9 inches and strong east winds...happy to say, they blew it again. We may have gotten 1/2'" of snow with a light mix of rain and sleet...the roads are a little slippery, but the 3rd straight stong storm that has been called for, has missed us.




Looking at the maps however, I gotta believe Bruno:





and Cookie:




were not so lucky......



Things are pretty busy, working 4 mornings this week at Greenville, Dartball last night, and our State High School Baseball Rules Meeting in Piqua tonight.....working on a couple of stories and will get to them as the week moves along.


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{photo}-The storm goes bust!

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Windy!



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And we are not talking the old "Association" song of the 60s.....driving down to the Dayton Airport last night at Vandalia, Ohio...the wind picked up and then overnight the temperatures dropped like a stone, winds today are gusting over 50 MPH with single digit temps......Sam flew in from Ontario, California....first to Houston, then on to Dayton....Sam said he had an all female crew, pilot, co-pilot, and the cart crew....says they did allright until they got 15 minutes from the airport, then it got rough......I reminded him, small 60 passenger plane, and 50 mph winds....doesn't matter if it was guys flying that were 250 pounds...that landing was going to be rough....anyway, with the wind and falling temps, our wind chill sets at about 20 below zero this afternoon.

The Pro-Bowl is on in the background....my buddy Jim Olson from North Dakota makes the trek ever year with his dad(who is now 92) and spends the month in Hawaii, and also takes in the Pro Bowl each year....keeps me in supply of NFL Hawaii T-Shirts...with the wind and cold today, I wouldn't mind being there.

Instead, Patrica and I went to the theater and took in "Fool's Gold"...last week we saw "The Bucket List"....neither movie is a 4 star, but both worth watching....if you go to see "Gold", it drags for about 45 minutes after the first 20 or so...but ends with good action for the last hour and is worth the matinee fee we paid of $5 bucks a shot.

3 mornings in Greenville this week, Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday, and will take Sam to Elkhart Tuesday to see if we can finally get his car dug out and started. Dartball tomorrow night at Mount Carmel, we have the 2 best records in the second half...they stand at 11-4, we are at 10-5....if we can take 2 or 3, we should win the 2nd half South Division title....but the way they thumped us last time, that is a big "If".
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{photos}...me(left) and Jim Olson at Disney World in 1975...Olson treks to Hawaii every February for the Pro Bowl and a month away from North Dakota winters....and a photo form the movie Patrica and I took in this afternoon, "Fool's Gold"

Friday, February 8, 2008

Radio Waves
















Back in the summer of 1981 we had 27 days of rain during the month of June alone...that was the first time I remember significant flooding along Beaver Creek from the Grand Lake spillway. The Beaver sits well below the west bank of the 13,500 acre lake and it the lone exit point for the lake on it's west side. Before the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, in all their bureau-rat-ic wisdom decided to change the spillway and "correct" the flow.....and that 1981 flow was in no way as bad as the 2003 release or the one we are currently having.....the Flood Warning for Mercer County continues until 4PM this afternoon...the correction by ODNR has been a disaster!

Back in 81 I worked as the Program Director/Morning Anchor at WCSM RAdio, having moved back to Celina from Dodge City, Kansas, the previous summer.....the flood was nothing major, but with the Radio Station sitting right on the banks of the creek, the electronic systems and offices were in danger of getting soaked....so we sandbagged, and that kept the water out of the building.

Similar actions are taking place this year as they were in 2003....the station is a vitural island...with only the south roadway open...Meyer Road to the north and Schunk Road to the east are nothing more than a 3 foot deep lake as of last night and this morning. Not sure what the timetable for the flood waters to recede are...but as of now the spillway is full and the lake is 2 feet about the overflow stage...meaning the full force of water over the damn will continue. The Medical Center, and the former Racquet Club are still closed and sandbagged....with the temperature scheduled to drop to 5 degrees by Sunday morning, the ice problem could get ugly.

After my "visit" to my former employer(didn't go there, just close enough to snap the photos)...I went on my daily walk for a mile, and it was another good one...30 degrees with a light, very light, snow shower.

{photos}-2 photos of one me and another of my 650 Yamaha at WCSM in June of 1981, before we started the sandbagging....and 3 photos today, as you can see, the telephone poles in the back are where Schunk Road runs east and west, and the station surrounded....at least 2 miles long and 3 feet deep as of this morning are the flood waters...June 1981 compared to February 2008.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Changes in Attitude




With the Flood Warnings still in effect for the area, I could have wandered out to the lake again and see what was happening with the rising Beaver Creek.....but figured enough of that, what will happen will happen....so I decided to make myself ready for upcoming baseball season.....my first High School game is at Fort Recovery on March 31st....and as stated, my goal is to keep my back improving, lose about 15 pounds, and get my physic back to where I think a 59 year(come March 16th) needs to be.


So back to the weight room in the basement this morning....walked a mile, and started my semi-Weight Watchers Diet....this one allows you to continue to have a few beers(just exchange them for bread) a day if you choose...very important come baseball season, when after a game, you need(want) to down a few, with a good cigar. Last time I dropped 35 pounds in about 4 months....this time, since I did not gain all or even most of the pounds back, I only need to drop to about 195 (13 pounds) by the beginning of the season....which is 7 1/2 weeks away.

Today's walk was my first long one since the Epidural Injection...covered about a mile or so in 25 minutes, then after a quick break, walked the Fairground for another mile....no problems for the back so far....

I really enjoyed today's walks...the temperature is hovering around 30 degrees, with little wind, but a light wet snow is falling....really a brisk nice walk that makes you feel alive....will continue to walk, at least 5 days a week, and lift weights 3 or 4 times per as well.

Politics__________

With the departure of Mitt Romney in today's GOP race, pretty well seals it for John "Amnesty" McCain...so my bitching for now is done. I don't like McCain, I won't vote for Obama or Hillary....so for the next several months, this blog will shut up about Presidential politics(all others are fair game)....my one little vote will be cast, but at this time I'm not sure whom it will be for.

{photos} walking through the County Fairgound early this afternoon, one shot in color, one septia}

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Mother Nature Calling!
















After another missed snow storm, nature has decided to do a 180 on us.....for the past 3 days we've had off/on rain, with temperatures ranging from the 50s to now down to 33...but still raining....a miserable cold rain, that appears to be going to continue for the rest of the day(Wednesday)...although it seems to be on the verge of changing to snow.

Unlike our blog buddy Bruno's neck of the woods, we have avoided the tornados and high winds....although we did have several major severe thunderstorms.....

It appears that Grand Lake St. Marys, our massive 13,500 Acre hand dug lake(1834), will run out of it's banks big time...again. The Lake flows to the west into Beaver Creek on the south edge of the Celina City limits...the Beaver eventually goes into the famous Wabash River and onto the mighty Ohio River on the southern Indiana border.....the last major flooding was July of 2003....before that, I don't think we had major water.

Living on the west side of Celina, with one of the highest spots in the city as my yard...with the exception of 2003(the idiot city's fault), I've never had water problems...and don't expect any with this mess.....others may not be so lucky. The one saving grace, rather than the 24 hours of hardcore downpours we had back in 03...this has been more spotty, and strung out...but major amounts, none-the-less.

I took Sam to Nappanee yesterday....he has a "Toy Hauler" RV heading to Mesa(Phoenix) Arizona....last night he got to Terre Haute....checking the radar online, I called him and told him of the impending "bow echo" on the radar....he pulled into a mall lot and took shelter(not always a good thing) in a local mall just off I-70, the place had 70 or higher MPH winds...and heavy rain, but unlike the poor souls in Memphis and Arkansas, no major damage....once past, he headed out and is in Sullivan, Missouri, this morning....now he can face some snow in the Springfield, Joplin, MO, and Tulsa, Oklahoma, area.

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{photos}-From 10AM this morning...photos taken from West Bank Road towards US 127(the major highway in and out of Celina)....they should be closing 127 down soon....and West Bank is not equipped for major traffic...in 2003 they tried and it was a mess...also photos of the "spillway" which tosses the overflow of water and ice(as you can see), into the Beaver Creek below...