Wednesday Tribute Open Comments

Gary Leo Rehm, Jr., Fire Controlman 1st Class, U.S. Navy

The most senior of the seven, Gary Rehm, had his own particular word for these brothers/shipmates.

“The sailors on the ship he called his kids,” his uncle Stanley Rehm Jr. told The Daily Beast. “He called them his kids.”

And, by various accounts, Gary Rehm had saved at least 20 of them after the collision. He then went down to save more.

“He said, ‘If my kids die, I’m going to die,’” the uncle said.

Gary Rehm perished with the six others.

“He could have walked away and been safe,” the uncle noted.

From top left to right, Personnel Specialist 1st Class Xavier Alec Martin, 24, from Halethorpe, Maryland, Yeoman 3rd Class Shingo Alexander Douglass, 25, from San Diego, California, Gunner’s Mate Seaman Dakota Kyle Rigsby, 19, from Palmyra, Virginia, and Fire Controlman 2nd Class Carlos Victor Ganzon Sibayan, 23, from Chula Vista, California. From bottom left to right, Sonar Technician 3rd Class Ngoc T Truong Huynh, 25, from Oakville, Connecticut, Gunner’s Mate 2nd Class Noe Hernandez, 26, from Weslaco, Texas, and Fire Controlman 1st Class Gary Leo Rehm Jr., 37, from Elyria, Ohio.  (U.S. Navy via AP)


That dream ended as Gary Rehm sought to save the rest of his kids. The USS Fitzgerald (DDG62) is named after Navy Lt. William Fitzgerald, who received a posthumous Navy Cross during the Vietnam War for sacrificing himself so his comrades could escape an overwhelming enemy force. Gary Rehm was no less brave and selfless. He is no less deserving of having a destroyer named after him.

Monday Open Comments

The Russians are among the most murderous people in the history of mankind.  This investigative article by a group at Buzzfeed News reveals a foreign government assassinating people in London seemingly at will with no visible resistance from British authorities.  It really is stunning.

From Russia With Blood

A two-year investigation by BuzzFeed News has now uncovered explosive evidence pointing to Russia that the police overlooked. A massive trove of documents, phone records, and secret recordings shows Young was part of a circle of nine men, including the exiled oligarch Boris Berezovsky, who all died suspiciously on British soil after making powerful enemies in Russia. The files reveal that Young lived in the shadow of the Russian security services and mafia groups after fronting for Berezovsky – a sworn enemy of the state – in a series of deals that enraged the Kremlin, including the doomed Russian property deal known as Project Moscow. British police declared the deaths of all nine men in Berezovsky’s circle non-suspicious, but BuzzFeed News can now reveal that MI6, Britain’s secret intelligence service, asked its US counterparts for information about each one of them “in the context of assassinations”.

and this also,

Poison in the System

The British government is suppressing explosive intelligence that Alexander Perepilichnyy, a financier who exposed a vast financial crime by Russian government officials, was likely assassinated on the direct orders of Vladimir Putin.

Perepilichnyy, who faced repeated threats after fleeing to Britain, was found dead outside his home in Surrey after returning from a mysterious trip to Paris in 2012. Despite an expert detecting signs of a fatal plant poison in his stomach, the British police have insisted there was no evidence of foul play, and Theresa May’s government has invoked national security powers to withhold evidence from the inquest into his cause of death – which is ongoing.

But an investigation by BuzzFeed News has now obtained fresh evidence that the authorities have deliberately sidelined, and has uncovered how Perepilichnyy spent his last days in Paris. Secret documents and interviews with more than a dozen current and former intelligence and law enforcement officials in the US, France, and the UK reveal…

Happy Fathers Day Weekend Open Comments


Y’all just thought I was gonna stick Texpat’s head on something strange.

It is Fathers Day weekend.  Men in general have been bashed and wussified in this country.  We have been described as sniveling beer drinking cowards that are lazy and do not care about our families.  That is so wrong.  I believe the first Hero in this country is our Dad’s.  The words above are just a small sampling of what the men who are Dad’s really are.

Happy Fathers Day Dads.

We salute you.

Friday Adorables Open Comments

Cutest little train wreck of a performance ever.

The girls had their first dance recital. I use the term “dance” rather loosely, as you will see. Here are their routines and their approximate positions, for part of the time, anyway:

L’il Darlin’s Tap Number: 14:28, she is the 2nd from the right
L’il Darlin’s Ballet Number: 36:18, starts out 2nd on the left, in front of another girl. I was so proud of her solo run back to her starting place as the instructor was trying to get them to exit. Noona’s talk about putting her stuff away kicked in!

Sunshine’s Ballet number: 31:19 4th from right. After “flying” she is 3rd from right.
Sunshine’s Tap Number: 23:36, she is 2nd from right (also the shortest in the class). She takes the “scenic” route around the stage.

Click on the link to access the video:
Super Heroes and Sidekicks Dance Recital

Here’s a close-up of L’il Darlin’ and Sunshine from a recent trip to a museum. (They were showing me “big” at the time.) It might help you pick ’em out of the line-up. They had hair switches as part of their costumes, so don’t the hair dos throw you.


Bragging Rights Tuesday Comments

This is La Princessa.  My great friend, Jeffrey, and I shot about 250 photos with her a few years ago at the marina on the Hudson River, on a Manhattan background, back when she was in a low place in time.  She got two magazine cover gigs from our work and a big boost to her esteem.

Things are far brighter now and she is set to be married in September.  To be a wife and a mother. I couldn’t be more proud of her.