Thursday, December 11, 2008

Where is the Marine Corps?

San Diego’s largest landfill, quite near the Marine Corp air station at Miramar, is filling up and the city is negotiating with the Corps to raise the maximum height of it by twenty feet. The negotiations were suspended last Monday when a F/A-18 fighter crashed into some homes near the base. I understand the suspension, as the same people are involved, flight safety personnel, and the fighter crash certainly has priority.

The man whose wife, mother-in-law and two daughters were killed in the crash is facing costs to bury them and, according to his pastor, is worried about being able to pay those costs. He also needs to fly family members from Korea and is worried about meeting those costs too, as well as housing them while they are here. His church is seeking donations.

Many people are being kept away from their homes; quite properly so, as the site is still very hazardous. One of them is known to us, a man named Robert Johnson. He and his family are being helped by the Red Cross; are being put up at a different hotel each night and given coupons for restaurant meals. They have been provided with bare minimums for personal needs, and they have no car since theirs was destroyed by the plane crash.

Robert is retired Navy and has spent many hours this past year volunteering as a docent at the USS Midway Museum.

Where the hell is the Marine Corps public relations? Why are they not stepping in to take care of these people?

There can be no question of liability; there is no question it was a Marine Corps jet that caused the loss that these people have suffered. The Corps should have been on the scene within hours telling people that they would be taken care of in every way possible, and if that is being done there is absolutely no sign of it. The flight safety personnel are preoccupied right now, but the Corps has a staff of people who have no job other than public relations, and they are dropping the ball altogether here. What do that have on their plate right now that is more important than this?

It is time, past time, for the Marine Corps to step up.

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