April 3: ON THIS DAY in 1953, 5,000 hail Korea vets here
ON THIS DAY IN 1947, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle reported, “Police and city crews today moved in on the second floor of the junk-filled mansion, last floor to be searched in the quest for Langley Collyer, 61, missing brother of Homer, 65, found dead in the house two weeks ago. The basement and parlor floors have already yielded an amazing total of junk, and the third floor had been searched by police before the Public Administrator took over the house under a court order. According to a police theory, if Langley is found at all it will be on the second floor, and if he is not found there the disappearance will remain an unsolved mystery. And the junk is truly amazing. Yesterday four more old pianos were discovered, bringing that total to 14. Also found were two violins, two organs and scores of ancient phonograph records, these highlighted by one called ‘Bugle Calls,’ by Chief Trumpeter Cassi of Roosevelt’s Rough Riders. To date 51 tons of rubbish have been removed. Many searchers say that Langley may have been caught in one of the many booby traps which were placed at frequent intervals in the mansion.”
ON THIS DAY IN 1953, the Eagle reported, “Five thousand waving and cheering civilians and a band playing ‘Hail, Hail, the Gang’s All Here’ greeted the troop transport General William Weigel as it docked today at the Brooklyn Army Base with 2,238 officers and enlisted men, the first to be returned direct to the East Coast from Korea and Japan. There were 61 Brooklynites aboard — among them a soldier who has never seen his baby. Under a brilliant spring sun, the gray 18,000-ton transport slowly moved into its slip at Pier 1, 58th St., and soldiers leaned over the rail and called down to relatives. Many of the welcomers carried home-made placards for identification purposes. Some read: ‘Welcome home, Chuck,’ ‘Here we are, Danny,’ and ‘Brooklyn’s own Willie Cohen.’ … The soldiers, many of them veterans of bloody battles in Korea, will be processed at Camp Kilmer and sent home on 30-day leaves. Some will be discharged and others reassigned.”
ON APRIL 4, 1915, the Eagle reported, “At the meeting of the Committee on the Prevention of Tuberculosis held in its rooms at the Brooklyn Bureau of Charities the other day, Dr. Richard M. Mills, physician in charge of the Day Camp Rutherford, maintained by the Department of Health and the Committee on the Prevention of Tuberculosis, read a report which was especially interesting in its detailed account of the ‘follow-up’ work done by the camp in the past year. Dr. Mills said: ‘The only way to prove work is to test the results. If persons pronounced cured of consumption suffer relapses when they resume their normal lives, the work for them has failed. Although the Day Camp has been in operation for five years, this year was the first in which it was attempted to take a complete census of the patients discharged. One hundred and twenty-eight persons were discharged from the camp as cured. Of these, fifty-six had changed their addresses and could not be traced. Seventy-two were found and consented to be reexamined. It was found that 77.8 percent of permanent good was done these patients at the floating hospital.”
ON APRIL 5, 1942, the Eagle reported, “Doris (Doree) Miller, the Negro mess attendant who left his kitchen to remove his dying captain from the bridge of their burning ship and then fired a machine gun at the Japs until ordered to leave, was commended for heroism last week by Navy Secy. Frank Knox. Commendation cited the 20-year-old son of a tenant farmer for ‘distinguished devotion to duty, extraordinary courage and disregard of his own personal safety.’ Back home, Navy recruiting officials recalled that young Miller had promised to be a ‘good sailor’ when he volunteered. He kept that promise.” For his actions at Pearl Harbor, Miller became the first black man to receive the Navy Cross. He was killed in action on Nov. 24, 1943. In January 2020, the Navy announced that a new aircraft carrier, the U.S.S. Doris Miller, will be laid down in 2023.
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