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PHILLIP BALYEAT, USNR WWII
Naval Aviation Cadet Program
Athletic Training Officer at NAS Fort Lauderdale
Iconic Michigan Photographer
COMMISSIONER CHIP LaMARCA
WHEREAS, on December 5, 1945 a training flight, named Flight 19, comprised of 5 TBM Avenger torpedo bombers with a crew of fourteen men, left NAS Fort Lauderdale at 2:10pm to conduct a routine navigation exercise and mock bombing run over the Bahamas: and
WHEREAS, on their return flight the squadron commander reported he was lost. By this time, the weather and sea conditions got worse, as the evening wore on. It is presumed over the next three hours, the squadron commander mistakenly led Flight 19 far out to sea, where the planes ran out of fuel and crashed. Also, a PBM Mariner rescue seaplane dispatched from the Naval Air Station, Banana River, Melbourne, Florida with 13 men aboard to search for Flight 19, disappeared after an explosion was seen in the distance by 2 ships.
WHEREAS, a massive search began, launching one of the largest air and sea searches in history , with units of the Navy, Army and Coast Guard scouring the sea for the lost aircraft. It was the biggest rescue effort of peacetime.
WHEREAS, Flight 19’s disappearance began the myth of the Bermuda Triangle, the area between Fort Lauderdale, Bermuda and Puerto Rico. Every year, several authors, documentary writers and producers do research on Flight 19, such as the History Channel, Travel Channel, Discovery, the National Geographic, Sci-Fi Channel, NBC, Military Channel, and the BBC, as well as others. The mystique and intrigue over what really happened to the airmen, has kept interest high about the men lost on that fateful day; and
WHEREAS, On Oct. 18, 2005, US Rep. Clay Shaw, R-Fort Lauderdale, sponsored a bill in Congress (H. Resolution 500) honoring the 60th anniversary of Flight 19. Rep. Clay Shaw, member of the Ways and Means Committee, was the author of the resolution; and
WHEREAS; The Fort Lauderdale Naval Air Station commemorates Flight 19 and its crew and each year on December 5th and proudly displays the history of the day and its crew. To this day, Flight 19 remains one of the great aviation mysteries. NOW THEREFORE,
BE IT PROCLAMED BY THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF BROWARD COUNTY, FLORIDA:
That the Board hereby designates December 5, 2015 as “Flight 19 Memorial Day" in Broward County, Florida.
YOU ARE CORDIALLY INVITED
70th Anniversary Flight 19 Memorial Ceremony
Saturday, December 5, at 1:00 pm
at the Naval Air Station Fort Lauderdale Museum Building
Open to the Public
National Register of Historic Places
Showcase of WWII Vehicles (1942 Pirsch Fire Truck, Willys MB's)
Reenactors, Color Guard, Ceremonial Music
Refreshments to Follow
Flight 19 is an annual memorial ceremony. 2015 not only marks the 70 year anniversary of the end of World War II in 1945, but also the 70th anniversary of Flight 19's disappearance. The ceremony commemorates the crewmen from the 5 TBM Avenger airplanes, and the Mariner rescue plane, all vanishing on 5 December 1945. Flight 19 began the myth of the Bermuda Triangle, and is one of the great aviation mysteries. The Memorial Ceremony is a public event celebrated on the grounds of the Naval Air Station Fort Lauderdale Museum, which is on the National Register of Historic Places. It commemorates the service members who died while training at Naval Air Station Fort Lauderdale during 1942 – 1946. The memorial also celebrates the heroes and heroines of World War II while educating Floridians about the important role Florida played in training for the battlefield and on the home front during the war.
The Board of County Commissioners of Broward County, Florida designated December 5, 2015 as "Flight 19 Memorial Day" in Broward County.
4000 West Perimeter Road
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33315
Deland Naval Air Station Museum Open House, 14 November
Tribute to Veterans Concert TONIGHT
Submitted by Mary Ann Gray, Executive Director at Broward Navy Days
We had a superb Luncheon with Captain A. JAY CRISTOL USN (Ret). A lecturer in law of naval warfare, and a former U.S Navy aviator and lawyer (JAG). Author of The Liberty Incident and The Liberty Incident Revealed. Cristol was chief judge of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Florida (1993-1999). He is currently Chief Judge Emeritus for the Southern District of Florida.
The Judge, as he is called by his friends, is a lifetime member of this museum. He shared with the attendees a great powerpoint presentation of his experience as a tail-hooker aboard the USS Princeton (CV-37), and as an aviator deployed to the Western Pacific flying noncombat missions aboard a Grumman AF Guardian. He also related how he once safely landed his plane on a South Florida roadway! During his navy service, Cristol received the Meritorious Service Medal, the Navy Commendation Medal, and the Navy Achievement Medal.
Click Play or arrows > to view slideshow
Biographical Sketch of Judge A. Jay Cristol
The Honorable A. Jay Cristol served as a Special Assistant Attorney General of Florida from 1959 to 1965 and as a trustee in bankruptcy from 1977 to 1985. He was appointed a United States Bankruptcy Judge for the Southern District of Florida on April 17, 1985. He served as that district’s Chief Bankruptcy Judge from 1993 until 1999. He served his country as a Captain in the Naval Reserve for 18 years as a naval aviator, first as a tail-hooker operating day and night from the aircraft carrier Princeton. Then he qualified as a four engine transport plane commander. He flew operational missions in the South China Sea during the Tachen evacuation in 1954. Later he flew missions during the Cuban Missile Crisis and in the 60's he flew volunteer air lift missions to Vietnam. He then spent another 20 years as a Navy JAG. During the 1980's the Department of Defense sent him to the International Institute at San Remo, Italy to teach Law of Naval Warfare to senior military officers from many nations.
Judge Cristol received his B.A. degree from the University of Miami, and his J.D. degree, cum laude, from the University of Miami School of Law where he was Research Editor of the Law Review and the recipient of other honors. He taught an advanced bankruptcy course as an adjunct professor at the University of Miami School for the past 20years. He received his Ph.D. from the Graduate School of International Studies at the University of Miami on May 9, l997 for his dissertation on the Liberty incident. During his distinguished career as a jurist, Judge Cristol has presided over many high profile bankruptcy cases including the chapter 11 reorganizations of General Development Corporation (one of the largest bankruptcy reorganization cases in U.S. history), Prime Motor Inns, Flannigans, Banco Latino International, Arrow Air and Pan American Airways. The Pan Am plan was confirmed after only four months and the reorganized company was so pleased with the results of its bankruptcy case that its first new aircraft was named the Clipper A. Jay Cristol. Arrow Air followed suit with a DC-8 named Judge A. Jay Cristol.
Judge Cristol has spoken on the Liberty incident at Harvard University, the Naval Historical Center, the National Security Agency, the Department of State, in Cairo, Egypt at the request of the Egyptian military, and at many colleges in the U.S. and abroad. He has also spoken on bankruptcy matters at the Pentagon, Navy JAG Headquarters and many military law events.
Judge Cristol’s first book, The Liberty Incident, was published by Brassey’s and released in June 2002. His second book, The Liberty Incident Revealed, was published by the United States Naval Institute Press in September 2013.
WREATHS ACROSS AMERICA
On Saturday, December 12, 2015, at 10 a.m., "Wreaths Across America" and the Air Force Association welcome you to sponsor and to participate along with the annual laying of the wreaths at Arlington National Cemetery and hundreds of Remembrance Ceremonies world- wide in remembering our veterans by the laying of Holiday Wreaths at the South Florida National VA Cemetery in Lake Worth.
SPONSOR A WREATH TO HONOR ALL VETERANS
As American Citizens we can honor and cherish those who have given so much.
1 WREATH $15.00 (you may order as many as you like)
**Please always include the codes in red (below) in your order
AFA Gold Coast Chapter 351 Sponsor: FLAFA351
For more information email@example.com
(1) To sponsor a wreath visit the website at:
www.wreathacrossamerica.org to pay online.
(2) Contact WAA by phone: 877-385-9504 x 304
(3) Make check out to and mail to:
Wreaths Across America
PO Box 249, Columbia Falls, ME 04623
Lake Worth Cemetery 561-649-6489 Ceremony 561-244-8069
WILLIAM LAW, USNR WWII - NAS BANANA RIVER
Our condolences to the family of Museum member Mr. William Law, 86, who passed away Wednesday, August 20, 2015.
Bill was born May 22, 1929 to parents, John and Lillian Law of Lake Worth Florida. He enlisted in the United States Navy at the age of 14 and served for 3 years. He received an honorary High School diploma from the State of Florida for his service in World War II. William had several different duties while in the navy, but the most important included flying, and aircraft maintenance during the war.
William, Bill to his friends, graduated from Embry Riddle School of Aviation in Florida, on March 25, 1949. Moving from Delta Airlines to U.S. Airlines, after marrying Clara Maxine Law, they moved to Fort Lauderdale, Florida in 1951. Bill owned his first plane, an Aeonca K, which was one of the first airplanes tied down at Fort Lauderdale airport-- after the navy moved off at the end of WWII. He owned and flew various types of planes for many years. At U.S. Airlines, a cargo carrier, he flew and serviced numerous aircraft. In 1953, after layoffs and inconsistent airline work, he worked as a Florida State Trooper until 1958. Then, he began his career with Eastern Airlines in aircraft maintenance. Before retiring at Eastern Airlines as a Shift Manager, supervising Technical Supervisors at Miami Technical Control Center, his occupation took him to multiple stations in Europe including Spain, the United Kingdom, Germany, and North Africa. His closing employment included Manager of Technical Supervisor at Butler Aviation, Sun Coast Airlines, Continental Airlines (as Maintenance Vice President), and International air leases from the U.S. into Europe.
In later years, he volunteered and enjoyed his time at the Naval Air Station Fort Lauderdale Museum, collecting, displaying memorabilia, and sharing stories with friends at the museum. This included historical artifacts from the missing “Flight 19” planes and pilots from December 5, 1945. He also spent his time writing a book with stories of his early childhood days in the navy, and periods of time in South Florida. His book of memoirs is exhibited at the Museum.
WE ARE OPEN
National Register of Historic Places. A Florida Heritage Site. Only remaining structure from WWII left on the naval base property. Home of Flight 19 one of the great aviation mysteries. A 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization. The Only Military Museum in Broward County.
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