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Navy officer, Red Raider remembered as ‘great guy’ (CO of USS Harry S. Truman dies suddenly)
The Daily Toreador ^ | 10 Nov 2011 | Ashlyn Tubbs

Posted on 11/11/2011 7:59:33 AM PST by ketelone

Capt. Tushar R. Tembe, commander of the USS Harry S. Truman died Tuesday in Norfolk, Va.

During the Texas Tech football game against Oklahoma State University on Saturday, there will be a moment where all the screaming and cheering will pause.

No fans in the stadium will make a sound. All conversations and instruments will remain quiet as a moment of silence will be conducted for a Tech alumnus who died Tuesday while serving as commanding officer of the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Harry S. Truman at Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Norfolk, Va.

The Tech flag currently flies at half-staff above Memorial Circle in honor of Capt. Tushar R. Tembe, a Red Raider who died while serving his country.

“Capt. Tembe was someone whose service we are extremely proud of,” said Jerry E. Turner, chairman of the Tech Board of Regents. “He is a representative of all the graduates who have had distinguished careers in service. As we celebrate his service, we are celebrating the service of other Tech alumni who have served in various sanctions of the military.”

In a statement from the U.S. Navy, Tembe, a Tech petroleum engineering graduate, was taken to Bons Secours Maryview Medical Center and was later pronounced dead. The cause of his death is currently unknown.

Tembe was born in India and moved with his family to New York City as a child. He was 49 years old at the time of his death and is survived by his wife, Marianne, whom he married in 1992, and their two sons, Ian, 16, and Connor, 14.

“We offer our sincere condolences to Capt. Tembe’s wife and children, his family and the Truman crew,” said Rear Adm. Ted Branch, commander, Naval Air Force, U.S. Atlantic Fleet, in a news release the Navy issued Wednesday. “They are in our thoughts and our prayers as we deal with this tragic loss. Capt. Tembe served the Navy and our nation honorably and with great distinction. We honor his outstanding contributions to our nation.”

John Fleming, who knew Tembe for more than 20 years, first met him in 1989 when Fleming was the commanding officer of Striker Fighter Squadron (VFA-132). He and Tembe were privateers who deployed on the USS Forrestall aircraft carrier.

“We called him ‘Haaji,’” Fleming said. “When we deployed on the Forrestall, we would take 80-100 aircrafts out on an aircraft carrier and go to the Mediterranean and participate in an event operation called ‘Provide Comfort’ that actually helped protect people against Saddam Hussein.”

Fleming said Tembe was a great junior officer at the time.

“He was very well-respected in the squadron and successful in becoming qualified as a fighter pilot for the Navy,” he said.

After he was in Fleming’s squadron, Tembe was selected to attend Empire Test Pilots’ School, which Fleming said is an honor.

Tembe went to England as an exchange student and was trained by the British military in becoming a test pilot. From there, he went to a tour in Maryland as a naval test pilot. He would perform carrier suitability tests, during which he would go out and make sure naval aircrafts were qualified to land onboard ships.

He was then selected for command and served as a commanding officer of the Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA-87), whose members are nicknamed the Golden Warriors.

Tembe was also selected to command the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower aircraft carrier (CVN-69) and the USS Nashville (LPD-13), the latter of which he took on a humanitarian mission to Africa where the crew went out and gave assistance to several African countries along the coast.

After that, Tembe was selected to command the USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75), where he served as commanding officer for three months.

“He was a great officer, a great leader and a great American,” Fleming said. “He was well-respected by the many he led.”

Tembe was also very involved with his family. He was active in Norfolk Academy sports and local sports programs in Virginia Beach, Va., in which his sons participated in. While his sons played soccer, baseball and basketball, Tembe enjoyed playing golf.

“He was a wonderful father, and an excellent golfer,” Fleming said. “He was very active in family sports.”

Fleming said Tembe was a very honest person and an extraordinary leader.

“He was well-liked by his Navy associates and also well-respected in the community,” he said. “He was also very smart. He went through a good engineering program and, with his test pilot background, he was a very logical thinker.”

Fleming said he saw Tembe every year since 1989 and that Tembe smiled all the time.

“We were very close personal friends and shipmates,” Fleming said. “He had a well-rounded personality and was just an overall great guy.”


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: cvn75; death; navair; navy; tembe; usn
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RIP, sir! Prayers for the family.
1 posted on 11/11/2011 7:59:37 AM PST by ketelone
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To: ketelone

Guns up!


2 posted on 11/11/2011 8:02:11 AM PST by SpinnerWebb (In 2012 you will awaken from your HOPEnosis and have no recollection of this... "Constitution")
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http://www.public.navy.mil/airfor/cvn75/Pages/CoC.aspx


3 posted on 11/11/2011 8:04:33 AM PST by smokingfrog ( sleep with one eye open ( <o> ---)
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To: ketelone
We called him ‘Haaji

Muslim???

The cause of his death is currently unknown.

They can't even run a competent cover up any more.

4 posted on 11/11/2011 8:07:07 AM PST by PAR35
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To: ketelone

Thank you for posting this. We need more uplifting stories of those who have worked hard and served others well.

May God be with him and his family. Ian and Conner sound like fine Irish names.


5 posted on 11/11/2011 8:14:16 AM PST by wizr (If God isn't on your side, who is?)
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To: JustaDumbBlonde

Texas Tech bump

RIP


6 posted on 11/11/2011 8:14:58 AM PST by afraidfortherepublic
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To: PAR35

Um no, dude. It says he moved to the US from India when he was a kid, served in a VFA, worked hard, got educated, served his nation, and was last posted as CO of the USS Truman. By all accounts, he was a good guy. Lets show some respect.


7 posted on 11/11/2011 8:19:13 AM PST by ketelone
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To: ketelone

8 posted on 11/11/2011 8:21:44 AM PST by afraidfortherepublic
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To: PAR35
Muslim???

More likely from Johnny Quest...


9 posted on 11/11/2011 8:22:15 AM PST by null and void (MSGT Dean Hopkins USMC (ret) WWII-Korea-Vietnam 11/9/1925-10/22/2011 My hero, my Dad)
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To: ketelone
Um no, dude.

So what IS his religion, since you know what it is not?

10 posted on 11/11/2011 8:53:14 AM PST by PAR35
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11 posted on 11/11/2011 9:08:53 AM PST by TheOldLady (FReepmail me to get ON or OFF the ZOT LIGHTNING ping list)
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To: PAR35

Hajii was his call sign as a fighter pilot. Remember the movie Top Gun ... you had Maverick, Ice Man, etc.

My son serves on the Truman, and quite frankly, your assumptions are vile. He was a well respected leader.


12 posted on 11/11/2011 9:16:40 AM PST by RainMan
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To: ketelone

Ashlyn Tubbs has taken journalistic liberty in putting a period after the S in Harry’s name. How helpful!


13 posted on 11/11/2011 9:21:14 AM PST by IrishPennant (We don't want to work so we go to work to make enough money not to work...Huh?)
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To: IrishPennant
The period is acceptable.


14 posted on 11/11/2011 9:55:20 AM PST by null and void (MSGT Dean Hopkins USMC (ret) WWII-Korea-Vietnam 11/9/1925-10/22/2011 My hero, my Dad)
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To: RainMan

So what is his religion?


15 posted on 11/11/2011 9:59:52 AM PST by PAR35
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To: null and void
The period is acceptable.

True, even Harry did occasionally, but only because someone told him he should as a matter of style. But his middle name was "S". My middle name is John. I don't put a period after it.

16 posted on 11/11/2011 10:09:19 AM PST by IrishPennant (We don't want to work so we go to work to make enough money not to work...Huh?)
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To: IrishPennant
My middle name is John. I don't put a period after it.

Ummmm, you just did...

*nully ducking and running for cover*

17 posted on 11/11/2011 10:14:54 AM PST by null and void (MSGT Dean Hopkins USMC (ret) WWII-Korea-Vietnam 11/9/1925-10/22/2011 My hero, my Dad)
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To: null and void
Touche'...

Bad Otter

18 posted on 11/11/2011 10:18:36 AM PST by IrishPennant (We don't want to work so we go to work to make enough money not to work...Huh?)
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To: IrishPennant

;^)


19 posted on 11/11/2011 10:20:24 AM PST by null and void (MSGT Dean Hopkins USMC (ret) WWII-Korea-Vietnam 11/9/1925-10/22/2011 My hero, my Dad)
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To: null and void

Love that “Glock” humor eh.


20 posted on 11/11/2011 10:27:03 AM PST by mcshot (Neither handsome nor handy but took an oath and will vote to save our Country.)
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To: magslinger

ping


21 posted on 11/11/2011 10:36:55 AM PST by Vroomfondel
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To: PAR35

What does it matter?

First, if you are going to be an arrogant ignorant racist, Indians are mostly Hindu, not Muslim. It is the Pakistani’s that are Muslim.

Second, though he was born in India ... he was raised in NYC, and went to Texas Tech. To make statements about his religion based on one single fact (him being born in India) is asinine. Are you going to claim he was a beer drinking redneck member of the KKK because he went to college in Texas? If not, why not? He spent more time in Texas than in India.

Third, regardless of his religion, he served this country well. He had the respect of sailors and aviators at every post in his career. Today is Veterans Day, and you are dishonoring a distinguished officer in the United States Navy who died while serving.

Tushar Tembe was a great American - you might want to read up on him. Start here.

http://www.dailytoreador.com/news/article_50f5159e-0c21-11e1-bc9c-0019bb30f31a.html


22 posted on 11/11/2011 11:03:12 AM PST by RainMan
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To: ketelone

RIP.


23 posted on 11/11/2011 11:22:33 AM PST by fieldmarshaldj (Rick Perry has more red flags than a May Day Parade)
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To: Vroomfondel; SC Swamp Fox; Fred Hayek; NY Attitude; P3_Acoustic; investigateworld; lowbuck; ...
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24 posted on 11/11/2011 11:39:14 AM PST by magslinger (To properly protect your family you need a Bible, a twelve gauge and a pig.)
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To: ketelone
*sigh*

All conversations and instruments will remain quiet as a moment of silence will be conducted for a Tech alumnus who died Tuesday while serving as commanding officer of the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Harry S. Truman at Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Norfolk, Va.

All active US carriers are nuclear-powered

John Fleming, who knew Tembe for more than 20 years, first met him in 1989 when Fleming was the commanding officer of Striker Fighter Squadron (VFA-132). He and Tembe were privateers who deployed on the USS Forrestall aircraft carrier.

WTH is a "privateer" in the US Navy? The Privateer was a World War II patrol bomber variant of the B-24.

“We called him ‘Haaji,’” Fleming said. “When we deployed on the Forrestall, we would take 80-100 aircrafts out on an aircraft carrier and go to the Mediterranean and participate in an event operation called ‘Provide Comfort’ that actually helped protect people against Saddam Hussein.”

"aircrafts"? I think he's talking about the carrier air wing, tho it's hard to tell. USS Forrestal (CV-59) was struck in 1993.

Tembe went to England as an exchange student and was trained by the British military in becoming a test pilot. From there, he went to a tour in Maryland as a naval test pilot.

Uh... NAS PAX, perhaps?

This man deserves far better reporting. RIP.

25 posted on 11/11/2011 11:56:58 AM PST by pabianice (")
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To: PAR35

I would guess, sir, that if he was born in India, he is a follower of Hinduism. But since his sons names are Ian and Connor, it could be Christianity too.

But thats hardly the point, sir. The point is, that the story is about the death of the CO of the USS Harry Truman, a naval aviator who has served his country for the better part of his life. And I dont see what your constant demands for his religious status have to do with that. I really dont.


26 posted on 11/11/2011 12:23:38 PM PST by ketelone
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To: PAR35

Heck, maybe he was an atheist. Who really knows or cares. Today is Veterans day sir. I will take this opportunity to salute a man who died in harness, doing the job he loved, which was protecting this country.


27 posted on 11/11/2011 12:31:46 PM PST by ketelone
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To: pabianice
All conversations and instruments will remain quiet as a moment of silence will be conducted for a Tech alumnus who died Tuesday while serving as commanding officer of the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Harry S. Truman at Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Norfolk, Va.

The times I was there Norfolk Naval Shipyard was located in Portsmouth, VA and I doubt seriously they moved it. Oh well. If that was a local reporter he/she knew better.

Fair Seas Captain Tembe. I haven't heard of many carrier CO's commanding one a second time. A very demanding and stressful job even in a shipyard environment.

28 posted on 11/11/2011 12:41:41 PM PST by cva66snipe (Two Choices left for U.S. One Nation Under GOD or One Nation Under Judgment? Which one say ye?)
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To: ketelone
The point is, that the story is about the death of the CO of the USS Harry Truman,

Yes, and some folks wonder what really happened, while others will wrap themselves in the flag and swallow the press release when it comes out.

29 posted on 11/11/2011 12:44:29 PM PST by PAR35
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To: PAR35
Yes, and some folks wonder what really happened, while others will wrap themselves in the flag and swallow the press release when it comes out.

Likely at his age a heart attack. On a ship with 5000 plus people die from both accidents and natural causes just like being in a small town. It's a reality on a carrier that while a person is stationed on one a few shipmates will die in war and in peace. Death doesn't play favorites and in ones death rank does not have it's privileges. I remember one of our chiefs passing while in his rack one night.

My chief was very lucky we were in Norfolk Naval Shipyard and he began having a heart attack. He drove straight to the Naval Hospital and died in the lobby. They brought him back and as far as I know 31 years later he's still alive. He was just lucky.

30 posted on 11/11/2011 12:54:01 PM PST by cva66snipe (Two Choices left for U.S. One Nation Under GOD or One Nation Under Judgment? Which one say ye?)
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To: ketelone

Prayers up for family and friends.


31 posted on 11/11/2011 12:55:04 PM PST by SwinneySwitch (Happy Veterans Day!)
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To: pabianice

In this case “Privateers” refers to the nickname of members of VFA-132. He would have been flying a variant of F/A 18


32 posted on 11/11/2011 1:22:57 PM PST by fireballxl5
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To: PAR35
You're a kook.

What's your religion?

33 posted on 11/11/2011 2:34:07 PM PST by starlifter (Pullum sapit)
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To: starlifter

Not one that’s politically correct.

And now I’m trying to figure out why everyone is so upset about my first question. He either is or he isn’t, but I’m a bit surprised at how many folks here say that the question can’t even be asked.


34 posted on 11/11/2011 2:39:33 PM PST by PAR35
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To: PAR35
So what IS his religion, since you know what it is not?

Ain't like it matters - read his resume then see how you stack up.

35 posted on 11/11/2011 6:48:05 PM PST by norton
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To: PAR35

Well, what really happened, sir? You tell me.


36 posted on 11/11/2011 9:15:18 PM PST by ketelone
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To: PAR35
What difference does his religion make to anyone...other than you?
37 posted on 11/11/2011 11:21:49 PM PST by starlifter (Pullum sapit)
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To: starlifter

Why don’t you go down to Fort Hood and tell folks that the religion of military personnel doesn’t matter. Be sure to wear either your ‘free Nidal Hasan’ t-shirt or the one supporting Naser Abdo.

Then of course, there is Hasan Akbar/Fidel Kools.


38 posted on 11/12/2011 7:06:51 AM PST by PAR35
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To: PAR35
The MSGT and others are correct!

Haaji was the perfect Call Sign for and India-born Naval Aviator. I had the honor of serving with CAPT Tembe in VFA-87. I was a Chief, E-7, with 18 years in the Navy at the time. I have served with and for many Officers and he was easily one of the finest in my 27 year career.

I would expect better treatment for a career Naval Officer from Texans!

39 posted on 11/12/2011 10:23:15 AM PST by WarParty CWO
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To: PAR35; WarParty CWO
Why don’t you go down to Fort Hood and tell folks that the religion of military personnel doesn’t matter. Be sure to wear either your ‘free Nidal Hasan’ t-shirt or the one supporting Naser Abdo.

Why didn't you do a web search on the man before yelling cover up and making a fool of yourself over his call name for example without any basis? First of all being the Commanding Officer of a carrier {must hold rank of Captain} is two grades above an Army Major{Ft Hood}. Then there is several more things. The Captain was observed throughout his Naval career even in combat. Any serious missteps along the way and no command.

To be a carrier C.O. you first serve as a carrier X.O. meaning Excutive Officer under the Commanding Officer first then go too a deep draft ship as rank of Captain then on too the carrier. A carrier Commanding Officer must also be a Naval Aviator. I don't think that rule has ever had an exception in modern carrier history.

On a carrier every Commanding Officer is watched. Likely more so than anyone else. Not because he is suspect but because of his position makes this such. He has a Marine assigned to him {refered to as Captains Orderly} and the Marine is with him from the time he hits the Quarterdeck in the morning till he leaves for the day or leaves the ship for other reasons such as a meeting. At sea an orderly is with him 24/7. If in his stateroom the orderly guards outside the door. Formal announcement is made ship wide for each arrival and depature from the ship the Captain makes. In his case it would be either Harry S Truman arriving or Harry S Truman departing would be the announcement.

No not even a Captain of a carrier has free reign to go into any secure spaces alone. On the Bridge at sea about 6-8 sailors including Captain and usually one-two officers, senior NCO, and junior enlisted are present at all times. Anywhere else his orderly is there. In the reactor control rooms others are there as well as the weapons magazines.

He is 100% responsible meaning he is accountable for everyones actions on the ship. As such his own conduct must be above standards.

I did some checking and it seems he collapsed on-board the ship which is in the yards for repairs. I say so because accounts say the ships medical response team was sent. These are corpsmen and doctors were first responder aside from likely his Marine orderly.

There is only one thing that would raise any questions and that is why he was transported to a civilian hospital when the Naval hospital was closer. The Naval hospital could have been on divert which sounds likely.

He was born in India and the odds of him being Islamic are small. Hinduism is the prevailing religion there but he had been in the U.S. and educated in the U.S. most of his life. BTW the Ft Hood shooter was born in the USA.

At sea the Captain of a carrier does have a higher ranking boss onboard ship usually which is an Admiral. An Admiral for cause can relieve and Captain of duty at any time.

The odds of the man being anything but what even his fellow Commanding Officers of other carriers say he was are very low. Two positions of command in the Navy get very tight scrutiny and that is for either submarine or carrier Commanding Officers. The Captain was likely headed for rank of Admiral in about a year and a half or retirement.

He was in an extremely high stress job and a high stress venue which is the yards. A perfect condition for a heart attack. If something didn't get fixed right it was his arse that would be held responsible. In case you haven't been following the news the past decade or so carrier Captains have been taking the brunt of blame for things well beyond their control as far as shipyard work goes. Most of the issues were a result of being underfunded.

Till you can prove him too have been anything other than honorable you need to stop trying to smear the mans name. His record and achievements says he has earned as much respect. Oh yea his call name Haaji would of the norm taken as another poster said from Johnny Quest. He didn't get to pick his call name BTW it would have been given him by his trainer or by his first squadron Commander. That name would not be an insult but rather a compliment to his flying abilities.

40 posted on 11/12/2011 3:36:55 PM PST by cva66snipe (Two Choices left for U.S. One Nation Under GOD or One Nation Under Judgment? Which one say ye?)
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To: cva66snipe

I haven’t smeared anyone. I asked a question that no one here appears to be able to answer. Why is the navy crowd afraid of a single question?


41 posted on 11/12/2011 4:23:28 PM PST by PAR35
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To: PAR35

The new Captain is Captain Dee L. Mewbourne is that OK with you?


42 posted on 11/12/2011 5:32:36 PM PST by cva66snipe (Two Choices left for U.S. One Nation Under GOD or One Nation Under Judgment? Which one say ye?)
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To: PAR35
Muslim???

Have you never seen "Johnny Quest"?

They can't even run a competent cover up any more.

Surely not one that can escape your devastating powers of deduction. </sarcasm>

43 posted on 11/12/2011 5:38:09 PM PST by SoJoCo
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To: PAR35
So what IS his religion, since you know what it is not?

Druid. That OK with you?

44 posted on 11/12/2011 5:40:01 PM PST by SoJoCo
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To: pabianice
All active US carriers are nuclear-powered

Then the statement was correct, wasn't it?

WTH is a "privateer" in the US Navy? The Privateer was a World War II patrol bomber variant of the B-24.

VFA-132's nickname is "The Privateers".

45 posted on 11/12/2011 5:43:19 PM PST by SoJoCo
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To: ketelone
During the Texas Tech football game against Oklahoma State University on Saturday, there will be a moment where all the screaming and cheering will pause.

Considering that Tech lost by 60 points I imagine there were many moments when all screaming and cheering stopped.

46 posted on 11/12/2011 5:47:22 PM PST by SoJoCo
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To: SoJoCo

Thanks for sharing your knowledge. I’ll assume that you are an honest person of integrity.


47 posted on 11/12/2011 5:48:53 PM PST by PAR35
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To: PAR35
I haven’t smeared anyone.

Yea you did. You made an assumption based solely on a call name and then you yelled cover up. Hey guess what? When a person dies at a DOD facility for unknown medical reasons it can take a week just for family to get the body and it can take sometimes months to get Cause Of Death. Why? Because they do an extensive autopsy including sending off blood samples etc and that takes a lot of time.

I asked a question that no one here appears to be able to answer.

Ever hear of the privacy act? His religion unless he expressed open hostilities toward the United States was his business. IOW the Navy could not release it nor could they when I was in three decades ago without written permission. I served with Muslims in the late 70's. I served with Buddhist as well. The deceased Captain has other carrier Captains and those who served with him throughout his US Navy career who would know his character which are vouching for him. That's good enough for me.

Why is the navy crowd afraid of a single question?

Believe it or not religion generally doesn't get that much discussion on a ship. There is or was evening prayer over the 1MC and on Sunday Divine Services held for the few who went.

When my ship went in drydock me and a buddy split the rent on an apartment for a year. I couldn't tell you if he is Baptist, Catholic, whatever. I still stay in touch with the guy and even after 31 years and I still don't know. The ships chaplain might have known the Captains religion but I can not for the life of me tell you what the three Captains I served under religion was. The only guy I avoided on religious issues on the ship was a satanist who held his rituals at his rack.

48 posted on 11/12/2011 6:10:19 PM PST by cva66snipe (Two Choices left for U.S. One Nation Under GOD or One Nation Under Judgment? Which one say ye?)
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To: PAR35

Alright, Sir. I checked it out. Tembe is a Hindu surname, from the Maharashtra State/Region of India, which is where the city of Bombay is located. Tushar, which was his first name is a traditional Hindu first name which means “Frost”, or “Snow”.

Not that it should have mattered to you, but Capt. T. Tembe was NOT a Muslim.

Are you satisfied, sir?


49 posted on 11/14/2011 5:45:52 AM PST by ketelone
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To: WarParty CWO

Im a Texan, sir. And you better believe that I do not agree with PAR35’s comments out here.


50 posted on 11/14/2011 5:49:15 AM PST by ketelone
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