Friday, April 30, 2010

Looking for a Particular Revolver

I'm asking for assistance in location a certain revolver. It's possibly lost forever, but I'm asking just in case one of you might be able to help out. No, this one was never mine. Most of the guns I've let get away were through my own doing. This lost firearm is being sought by a lady I've never met.

The back story:

John J. Burke
b. 1909 d. 1969

He enlisted in the Pennsylvania State Police in 1933 and retired in 1956. (A representative S&W Military & Police revolver.)

Upon retirement from PSP in 1956, Trooper Burke was given a Smith & Wesson .38 revolver with 4" barrel, inscribed PA STATE POLICE 1933-1956 JOHN J BURKE. He subsequently served as Chief of Police in Grove City, PA. The old officer died in 1969.

The late chief's daughter is Ms. Maggie Burke Dull, and she is anxious to locate her father's old revolver as a family keepsake. Her brother, Robert, not knowing that she wanted it, traded it off to a dealer in Jeffersonville, near Norrisown, PA, around 2003. I read about her request for assistance on I'd really be glad if one of my readers was able to help her out.

Friends, you needn't tell me how slim are the chances of tracing this particular handgun. Other than the unique inscription, there's nothing distinguishing about it. It seems unlikely that the now-retired daughter could pay a huge price to buy it. I can only hope that the current owner, if located, might be generous and willing to sell it for a fair price. Even if it doesn't work out so that Ms. Dull can obtain her dad's sidearm, it would be nice if she could find out what happened to it. You may get in touch with Ms. Dull through The Firing Line board by clicking THIS LINK and then on "Contact Info." Her TFL member name is burke1943. Or, feel free to e-mail or comment to me. If anyone can help in any manner, it would be a very kind act to do so.

Best regards,

Thursday, April 22, 2010

BANANAS - Are they magical?

I've mentioned my friend Rob - Retired Marine Gunnery Sergeant, retired police officer, shadetree philosopher, scholar, hunter, shooter - all around interesting individual. He moved out of state a few years back and I really miss visiting with him. He passes along interesting tidbits of information from time to time.

This showed up in my e-mail recently. It is fascinating enough that I felt it appropriate to pass along. I hasten to admit/disclaim that I have not done any personal research, nor sought any documentation on any of trhe claims below. I do NOT subscribe to all the latest and greatest health fads. There's no way I'll buy into the idea that one can thrive abundantly simply by gobbling a handful of vitamins, food supplements, herbs and such. I've found that when someone tries to sell me on that sort of thing, there's usully a least a partial, underlying, profit motive. Maybe the passer-along doesn't stand to make money from the idea, but most of the time, someone does. Well, first, Rob wouldn't buy into that sort of thing, and second, I don't see how any individual or company would have any profit motive for hypling this particular idea. (Chiquita? Dole? I love you guys, but I seriously doubt that ALL of my readers could alter their revenues by a tiny fraction . . .) Judge for yourself.

I've edited the text a little, but most of it's here - -
Bananas contain three natural sugars - sucrose, fructose and glucose combined with fiber. A banana gives an instant, sustained and substantial boost of energy. Research has proven that just two bananas provide enough energy for a strenuous 90-minute workout. No wonder the banana is the number one fruit with the world's leading athletes. But energy isn't the only way a banana can help us keep fit. It can also help overcome or prevent a substantial number of illnesses and conditions, making it a must to add to our daily diet.

Depression: According to a one recent survey [??] . . . amongst people suffering from depression, many felt much better after eating a banana. This is because bananas contain tryptophan, a type of protein that the body converts into serotonin, known to make you relax, improve your mood and generally make you feel happier.

PMS: Forget the pills - eat a banana. The vitamin B6 it contains regulates blood glucose levels, which can affect your mood.

Anemia : High in iron, bananas can stimulate the production of hemoglobin in the blood and so helps in cases of anemia.

Blood Pressure: This unique tropical fruit is extremely high in potassium yet low in salt, making it perfect to beat blood pressure. So much so, the US Food and Drug Administration has just allowed the banana industry to make official claims for the fruit's ability to reduce the risk of blood pressure and stroke.

Brain Power: 200 students at a Twickenham (Middlesex) school ( England ) were helped through their exams this year by eating bananas at breakfast, break, and lunch in a bid to boost their brain power. Research has shown that the potassium-packed fruit can assist learning by making pupils more alert.

Constipation: High in fiber, including bananas in the diet can help restore normal bowel action, helping to overcome the problem without resorting to laxatives.

Hangovers: One of the quickest ways of curing a hangover is to make a banana milkshake, sweetened with honey.. The banana calms the stomach and, with the help of the honey, builds up depleted blood sugar levels, while the milk soothes and re-hydrates your system.

Heartburn: Bananas have a natural antacid effect in the body, so if you suffer from heartburn, try eating a banana for soothing relief.

Morning Sickness: Snacking on bananas between meals helps to keep blood sugar levels up and avoid morning sickness.

Mosquito bites: Before reaching for the insect bite cream, try rubbing the affected area with the inside of a banana skin. Many people find it amazingly successful at reducing swelling and irritation.

Nerves: Bananas are high in B vitamins that help calm the nervous system.

Overweight and at work? Studies at the Institute of Psychology in Austria found pressure at work leads to gorging on comfort food like chocolate and chips. Looking at 5,000 hospital patients, researchers found the most obese were more likely to be in high-pressure jobs. The report concluded that, to avoid panic-induced food cravings, we need to control our blood sugar levels by snacking on high carbohydrate foods every two hours to keep levels steady.

Ulcers: The banana is used as the dietary food against intestinal disorders because of its soft texture and smoothness. It is the only raw fruit that can be eaten without distress in over-chronicler cases. It also neutralizes over-acidity and reduces irritation by coating the lining of the stomach.

Temperature control: Many other cultures see bananas as a 'cooling' fruit that can lower both the physical and emotional temperature of expectant mothers. In Thailand , for example, pregnant women eat bananas to ensure their baby is born with a cool temperature.

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD): Bananas can help SAD sufferers because they contain the natural mood enhancer tryptophan.

Smoking & Tobacco Use: Bananas can also help people trying to give up smoking. The B6, B12 they contain, as well as the potassium and magnesium found in them, help the body recover from the effects of nicotine withdrawal.

Stress: Potassium is a vital mineral, which helps normalize the heartbeat, sends oxygen to the brain and regulates your body's water balance. When we are stressed, our metabolic rate rises, thereby reducing our potassium levels. These can be rebalanced with the help of a high-potassium banana snack.

Strokes: According to research in The New England Journal of Medicine, eating bananas as part of a regular diet can cut the risk of death by strokes by as much as 40%!

Warts: Those keen on natural alternatives swear that if you want to kill off a wart, take a piece of banana skin and place it on the wart, with the yellow side out. Carefully hold the skin in place with a plaster or surgical tape!

Looks like a banana really is a natural remedy for many ills. When you compare it to an apple, it has four times the protein, twice the carbohydrate, three times the phosphorus, five times the vitamin A and iron, and twice the other vitamins and minerals. It is also rich in potassium and is one of the best value foods around.

So maybe its time to change that well-known phrase so that we say, 'A banana a day keeps the doctor away!' Bananas must be the reason monkeys are so happy all the time!

I will add one here; want a quick shine on our shoes?? Take the INSIDE of the banana skin, and rub directly on the shoe...polish with dry cloth. Amazing fruit !!!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

APRIL HISTORY: San Jacinto and the Doolittle Raid

I've let my blogging lapse for several months, and a nod at a couple of historical dates may be a good way to ease back into the groove. If it doesn't "take," well then, it's still a good idea to recall certain aspects of the past. Here are two that took place in the month of April.

Today is the Day of San Jacinto. The Battle of San Jacinto, to be more precise. I've previously written on the topic and see no point in repeating the same information. The significance of the battle and the aftermath is just as profound now as it ever was. In short, this battle ensured Texas' separation from Mexico, and the resultant treaties gave form to the United States for all time to come.

18 April 1942 - - The Doolittle Raid on Tokyo, while minor in tactical results, had tremendous significance in terms of American morale and global news. It placed the Empire of Japan on notice regarding the BIG error they'd made in starting a war with the U.S.A. World War II was a long, hard war, one with crucial bearing on the entire future of civilization. It was incomprehensibly costly, in terms of the lives cost, not to mention the huge expenditures of money it took to wage the conflict. Unfortunately, some onerous tasks must be undertaken, no matter what the bottom line turns out to be. Thanks to The Greatest Generation, the U.S. and the Allied Powers prevailed. It is interesting to reflect on the continuing effects of that great conflict, and the ways in which, not only did the world map change, but how societal and international attitudes were altered for all succeding generations.

An occasional look back at history can well provide us with some landmarks to help us into the future.