On this very special patriotic episode of The Sioux Empire Podcast hosts Robert Mehling and Seth Glover welcome Garrett Gross from Age Media, he’s here to tell us about some of the extraordinary stories about Sioux Empire veterans he’s collected. Before we dive in with our History Buff Guest we discuss Dusty Johnson’s claim that he looks like “the 145-pound love child of Doogie Howser and Conan O’Brien,” your Sioux Falls drinking water is probably fine, but you’ll have to read that in Rapid City, and Woodward and Bernstein are this year’s Boe Forum guest speakers at Augustana. This week’s episode is brought to you by our great supporters on Patreon. If you’d like to support the work we do here at the Sioux Empire Podcast Network, visit Patreon.com/SiouxFalls to find out how. The Sioux Empire Podcast is eternally grateful for the sacrifices our veterans have made and continue to make for us. Thank you for your service!
In which Dusty Johnson says that he looks like “the 145-pound love child of Doogie Howser and Conan O’Brien,”
From the Argus:
“Trent Lubbers, Utility Operations Administrator for Sioux Falls Public Works, said in total, the chemical has only been detected in treated water three times since 2013, and all of the wells that were found to have sourced it were quickly shut down. In none of those instance were PFAS levels higher than health guidelines.
“We take the safety and quality of our water very seriously, and we’ve been very prudent in isolating the water that is coming from our wells,” Lubbers said.
Lubbers noted the city sends water samples to an outside lab in California each month and the South Dakota Department of Natural Resources reviews the results.”
Boe Forum 2019
In the early 1970s, Woodward and Bernstein broke the Watergate story for The Washington Post, leading to the resignation of President Richard Nixon and setting the standard for modern investigative reporting, for which they and The Post were awarded the Pulitzer Prize.
Age Media with Garrett L Gross
Sioux Falls Connected
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and join me as always is co-hosts after the Glover is Garrett gross.
You bet that. [1:14] I’m sorry I’m so I guess we’re just like the pronunciation turns out to be like something I don’t expect on the last name I like it it’s like what it
80/20 with him with Ron Ray and the two kids and then only got to get this morning,
yeah I think I got it for the 20th okay that’s okay well that’s that’s fair.
So let’s jump right into these headlines here I just have to quit items for everyone obviously we’re coming right off that.
Entertaining midterm election here and obviously the big question everyone has after the fall out of this you know biggest midterm election history whatever is.
Dusty Johnson our new Soul representative in the the House of Representatives. [1:57] He he came out with the screw out here he says that he he looks like the 145-pound lovechild of Doogie Howser and Conan O’Brien.
So we’re going to take a look at yours Conan O’Brien yours Dusty. [2:17] Now I couldn’t tell if he was talking about the like how what’s the guy who plays Doogie Howser. [2:27] I understand you. Patrick Harris.
You talking about like nowadays or if he’s coming about little kid I think after Harris little kid definition totally is so his hair is 100% little kid every day.
It really looks like he just now that I am seeing the pictures side by side and obviously we’ll put these in the show notes. [2:53] I kind of agree Seth what do you got you think I mean that’s an awesome looking in the mirror is entire life he’s paid.
He’s really big that I could have took the Conan O’Brien thing is like I kind of get the Doogie Howser thing but the Conan O’Brien thing I was like really,
cuz not all photos of Conan O’Brien work but I found one in particular that was very like oh yeah okay yep I see it now. [3:17] Here is what have the red hair but it’s not about the aye he’s got those Doogie Howser here that’s where it dookie Hauser is and I think. [3:26] I think you got a phone ringing like you do. [3:32] So yeah obviously the midterm elections happened I will be talking about that more in our political episode next week that we’re going to do a full breakdown of everything that happened there.
But first we’re to touch on one more local headline here that happened this week.
This is a pointless toxic Avengers this is the okay so the Rapid City Journal and he says it how the story starts Rapid City Journal and Associated Press reported that.
This phone that they used out at the airport for years and years that’s fire fighting foam had contaminated a bunch of the groundwater here in Sioux Falls.
So they tested and they were fighting traces of it in the water say the clothes like 19 Wells or something like that to prevent it from getting into the the drinking water supply. [4:17] Well it wouldn’t have been that big a deal except for. [4:22] Like no one covered it it was this weird like vacuum of coverage where no one in Sioux Falls with touch it or talk about it in the media.
So everyone found out that when people did find out about I was like is this like a cover-up or something cuz rapid City’s the one reporting on Sioux Falls as water no one else in Sioux Falls is talking about it.
So we are not putting a post out on the blog about it,
and then a bunch of others picked up on it and actually started covering it and especially the ones that are Associated Press Affiliates picked up the Associated Press story and actually started running it.
And so now the city is come back saying. [4:56] You know what to just wait any Panic about the water supply or anything like that just right lovers utility operations and this is from Joe Stephens article in The Argus Leader Hey Joe.
Trent lovers utility operations administrator for the Sioux Falls Public Works said in total the chemical has only been detected in treated water three times since 2013 and that all the wells that have been found to be Source were quickly shut down and none of the instances where the levels higher
Better Health guidelines so. [5:24] I don’t know why I don’t know what the lesson is to take away from this there they’re saying basically it’s a temp estimate e cuddle this isn’t much of a like new story but I’m still like well then why did they. [5:36] Why do we have to go to Rapid City to learn about something with the water quality I’d say that’s a fair question yeah. [5:44] And I’m still asking that and I like the the administrators coming out and saying you know we do you know I was worried cuz someone told me that they had stopped doing
like independent testing but it’s all done by the city being its own watchdog or whatever but this article from The Argus Leader and I trust Joe over there.
Says that they have an outside lab in California test the water as well as the state of South Dakota test the water so.
I know it sounds like there is some like outside you know testing on that but. [6:16] I don’t know I’m just like why was this handled the way it was that’s the I wish yeah why wouldn’t you know a bigger name in Sioux Falls be talking about it and. [6:27] Driving right now to learn about stuff on Facebook you thought it was a joke.
You don’t like a white why is Robert the person breaking the story I was peanut because I was like cuz I saw I saw the Associated Press the fire in Erie. Just the way they,
written it so that got me for I was legit like freaked out like I was like Charlton Heston Soylent Green.
Rowdy is there should be other agencies that cover this if there is truly an issue there it’s it’s crazy that. [7:14] Just the way it came to light yeah why why would it I mean where it worth 2018 going into 2019 year people.
The city doesn’t suit city of Sioux Falls I don’t know why they have I was hoping the whole tight-lipped covering up everything keeping everything inside close to the chest was a.
Was a huether thing that would kind of go out with Tim Hagan but apparently apparently not so if it was or if it was something. [7:42] Beyond that and it was just meant to be. [7:46] Cover it up until after you know election day than that that then congratulations that work.
But I don’t know what it’s that’s that’s real lucky and that’s real conspiracy theories. [8:03] It’s so there was no it wasn’t a City municipal election.
So curly so it’s not like the mayor or anybody on the city council with the fire department still using that same phone it does not sound like it sounds like that discontinued a long time ago.
The big the big thing is like how much was used back in like the 50s and 60s especially but I’m just going to like.
So they shut it down as soon as they detect it it’s like how long does a well-run before they detect it and yeah I don’t know I just have lots of questions and I’m.
Like I said I’m more math than anything that I had to like that I had to go read the freaking Rapid City Journal of find this out that’s. [8:47] Well locally-owned. [8:52] But I trust Joe and if Joe Joe’s got the lowdown on this I mean he’s friend of the show he’s been on here much more Joe’s we need more Joe’s absolutely.
I’ll go for that my last story I need a cover for local stuff here before we get into what gear it’s got here is,
Boe Forum 2019 I’m always super excited about this I really love to see Neil deGrasse Tyson speak he’s even hanging on my wall behind me hear the cover of that one and then I sent said Peter to Condoleezza Rice speaking last year.
Big big guys at the big guns that got this year are Woodward and Bernstein V Woodward and Bernstein that broke the Watergate story for the Washington Post leading them winning a Pulitzer Prize and leading eventually to the resignation of President Richard Nixon.
The whole Watergate scandal and all that so they’re kind of like the.
The like Ne-Yo of investigative reporting you know like legendary like all-powerful and it’s and they’re kind of like the people to talk to about new stories that affect president’s and so. [9:56] I can’t help but think it’s like it’ll be like March when he comes to Sioux Falls or when they come to Sioux Falls and talk.
It was going to be right about the time that the new democrat majority is going to be in the house and it’s going to be like investigations going on and stuff like that so it’s just like.
I’m just like whoever runs the Boe Forum in like gets their guests that’s timing man yet that is that is like going to be so in the Zeitgeist when that’s going on is going to be crazy.
The Boe forum is absolutely awesome yeah I bet both warm is amazing I went jogging in the late 90s and I remember when Gorbachev came to speak and it just looks like a 7-year difference between when your check came to August and of the speaker,
and when you know all the conflict in the Cold War was just at winding down and we just crazy I think that much can happen in 7 years and then they get him to come doggy.
Yeah that’s well that was you know that I was looking at their list and it’s like they had Giuliani like 2 years after 9/11 they had.
Play Queen Noor of Jordan like right around that time too and I’m just like I was looking at the past guests and I was like holy crap I’m just just think of your are those presentations and speeches are they,
are they log somewhere where the public can access them. [11:10] I don’t think there’s recordings of them if there is it’s not on the boat Forum page maybe the center for Western studies shout out to those guys to have something like that but I haven’t seen it if there is but yeah you’re right being very cool for absolutely
yeah they have so you should be doing that. [11:27] That was when was Gorbachev came right you know I’m 19 years old and a couple of course you this is before selfies right sure about a loan to have a picture with Gorbachev right,
and there was a listener down the hallway from me,
who was from Norway and somehow Gorbachev picked him to have a picture taken with him. I’m like what the hell you know so it’s just crazy.
That’s awesome so with that we’re going to transition out of news here and we’re going to get into a little bit of what Garrett’s got for you. [12:02] Music. [12:08] This is why carrots here Garrett gross you the founder of age media co-founder co-founder and my wife my wife would.
What up will have something to say about that spirit says it’s all him he’s 100% like everything behind what’s the weather. [12:28] So he is getting so he co-founder of age media event you put out a lot of lot of different magazines,
so I really enjoy some of your like the farming Community ones the farm Family Once you put out and you have a we have here for Veterans Day in particular because you’ve got a special edition
about veterans with a lot of like really interesting local history veterans stories and I wondered if you wanted to dig into any of those today and talk about a little bit you bet my wife and I we’ve been producing these private monthly Publications that go out to,
various groups of people for about 45 years now and you know whether it’s a neighborhood in Sioux Falls or the other communities that we target with our Publications around the state,
yeah we were in the previous second we were joking about there not being a local newspaper yeah I’m not trying to throw the Argus and Joel under the bus and stuff like that but the newspaper industry has changed dramatically in the last,
attend 20 years in. It’s just it’s just different now people access their news differently than they did 30 years ago and you know there’s a lot of places you can go to get,
few minutes or a few don’t City Council meetings or whatever you want to look for and in the process that kind of change a lot of the newspapers of lost focus on local stories and local interest,
and there’s almost a gap there were organizations like age media and what we do we kind of feel the human interest side and tell the stories of people and families and communities that get overlooked. [13:57] And a few people will digest media when they click on a website or look at a headline,
for just like that what’s the news going on but there is the other side of the coin people like to sit down and read something about you know the people in their communities and I a joke about this probably the the the.
Nicest compliment we’ve gotten in our magazines that we do had a gentleman tell me you know how you for years I go to the newspaper to read the obituaries.
Can I read about some guy that’s you did a lot of cool things in this life and it’s like maybe be fun to know that guy but he’s dead.
Your magazine be fun to hear when they’re still alive right right so it’s kind of a backhanded compliment when he said these people are nice to know but,
there are There Yet TV better so it’s kind of fun to look at it from that angle but that’s what we tell our stories about people local community that you see him everyday you have no idea what they’ve done in their life in
they’re probably not going to be the one that’s going to shout it from the rooftops but everybody’s got a story and some of these guys out there have incredible stories they lived in their life absolutely. [15:02] So tell us a little bit about the these veteran specials cuz there’s some there’s some really cool stories if you want it if you’re interested I don’t want to spoil like too much people should go out and and get these but. [15:14] Just a little bit about,
show me some local veterans what can I tell you one of the one of the examples of people that a lot of people in the community are familiar with a gentleman by the name of Ward Wigwam he’s an architect he’s about 94 95 years old now,
and the award is most well known for his architectural work with the teepees on the interstate,
in the sixties and seventies he was commissioned to to design those teepees and you know they were joking they called Guam’s wigwams.
And don’t you know it’s kind of cool when you look at,
your local history to incorporate your positive messages that he has with a balance between Native American community and then everybody else in the area those teepees are iconic.
Weather in ward has done in the Mount Rushmore of South Dakota architecture,
he’s on that no question about it sure I’m even here in Sioux Falls other three fire stations via Chapel at Augustana College there’s Good Samaritan on North Minnesota Street North Minnesota,
When I See words work I can identify his architecture touch the versus the other guys that are out there and we did a story on Warren AR magazines about 4 years ago.
And at the end of every interview I do with people that’s what I thought I said hey is there anything else you’ve done in your life that’s kind of cool. [16:35] You never know what they’re going to say and Ward he’s just a skinny little older gentleman he just looks at me and says well I landed at Utah Beach does that count,
she said yes that would that would qualify a bitch just so modest so simple and you know when he started talking about
you know his experience he was a engineer and they sensually his job was to locate and diffuse landmines and you know what he. [17:03] Landed at Utah Beach and then he knows they work their way across the northern France there he was involved in the Battle of the Bulge,
and I wore it is a flea still an interesting character I can imagine him when he was you know 18 20 years old same guy and one of the issues within the Battle of Bulge obviously if you if you’re not familiar with that,
well that was one of the largest our last largest German kind of advance and in the process you know it was the dead of winter it was in in the highly. [17:35] Arctic by any means but it was cold snowy miserable
and what happened was a lot of these German soldiers they ended up stealing coats and uniforms of the US soldiers
and are they would essentially act like US soldiers and then wreak havoc as they saw fit and kind of gathered up English-speaking one Germans that
the pass is American to I remember them putting up the call for that with the caveat of they didn’t know how the White Sox did the previous year in the Major League Baseball.
So I don’t know what are the keywords that ward in his group would share if you didn’t know a guy you were supposed to ask him to have the White Sox do last year.
And that if they didn’t know the answer will then every other question would come up but words like talking like baseball
it was what Ward is done and you know there’s other people in the community hear that
how we featured over the years that like I said it’s just the guy that lives down the street but the end of the day that guy played a very important role in you know in our in our culture Franklin. [18:43] Yeah that’s that’s an amazing story and so do you go out and do the interviews people ask that question a lot.
And the biggest thing we do with all our media avenues that we have is we’re open to people contacting us and you know with what we’ve done.
The biggest thing we do because our stories are so intimate on a personal level is we need to build trust with the people that get our Publications or that they go to our apps are going to watch our videos that we post people need to,
feel the word trustworthy Avenue to share their story and when they do that meal they just open up an example of that would be here in Sioux Falls there’s a well-known family the kessinger family.
Ken kessinger he’s if you go down to the Washington Pavilion.
And just you go down there 10 times you’ll run into can at least one of those times Ken’s probably 93-94 give or take a little bit if I’m off forgive me but I know he graduated from the Washington High School class of 1943.
And I know Ken was a very Avid athlete basketball baseball football you name it he was track he still competes in senior Olympic Games and he’s got several State records in the. [19:57] In the world of a Senior Olympics and his goal is he turns 100 during the Howard Wood relays and we don’t.
I will be 19 or a 2000.
28 I think that’s somewhere on somewhere around there 2528 somewhere like that he turns a hundred on the Howard Wood relays date and his goal is to.
Be able to run a hundred-yard dash shooting that but the reason I bring up Ken is a lot of people he’s in the August Anna Hall of Fame he’s in the Sioux Falls Washington Hall of Fame and people knew him as an athlete and educator and a coach but I know he was a bombardier,
in the Northern Italy on a b 19 and it’s just kind of one of these things were. [20:39] Once again he lives just east of McKennan Park and people just know him as the neighbor but he played a very key role in you know his. [20:48] His crew and you know people don’t know those stories but he’s glad to share them and actually he gave me his.
A journal basically a Daily Journal that he wrote from March of 1945 until August of 1945 and December those journal entries and they’re just to see the war Through The Eyes of a 19 20 year old kid,
it’s it’s it’s it’s incredible because you know he talks about getting up at 5 in the morning you know going we getting breakfast and having your little briefing getting in the plane flying 3 hours to where they’re going to do their bombing mission,
and he says in one post he said yeah I dropped 3000 pound bombs on a bunch of Nazis,
how we landed at 3 we played softball I went through for 4 with two doubles and six RBIs are you kidding me that is awesome but if you understand Ken you know Sports of always been huge the end of course when he was 19 20 years old.
He just did his job came back and relax that afternoon so we put in his journal it just.
It just always amazes me that you know as a like well you and I have talked before and I I’m a big history nerd and you kind of I don’t know if you don’t like this title but are also very much in the history of his return if you will.
But it always amazes me just like hidden little stories about people and places absolute and then the ones that are just like buried in the community like that I think like a. [22:15] And my grandfather on my mother’s side and all his like experience in the Korean War and like him not talking about it for years and years and every once in awhile.
You just like say something that would just like wait what right like. [22:30] I think like something like the History Channel was on or something like that was stupid about Mega Ali when the when the the mix came online and free out they didn’t really have anything for the Americans didn’t have a fighter jet fighter like in the field yet to like challenge it and.
He just walks in the room it’s like oh he’s like that was awful he’s like I I know he’s like one of those God damn things came over us and. [22:53] You know it’s just, like off-the-cuff talked about his Foxhole was safe that he made it to but the one next to him got hit with an incendiary bomb and he’s like,
you know people he knew didn’t make it out of there and he’s just like that was just hell until they got the Sabres and they are so that we could fight back and.
Just like holy shit like I’ve never heard him say anything like that in that just came out of the blue was like good news. He’s talking about an emotional response to an event that occurred yeah I mean Street boring as hell.
When it’s presented by Mr insert your boring High School teacher its name here yeah dates events who gives a rat’s ass I mean really.
Yeah you start talking about experiences and understand the concept the contact context of emotions and what does emotions meant,
it’s a totally different deal and you know with our magazines that we put out and everything we do,
we want to connect with people on a very personal intimate level in meal obviously. [23:54] Where you live at a time now we’re divided whether it’s this screw swather that cruise fault it doesn’t matter,
yeah for the most part of if you can connect people and find Common Grounds on certain things and in the process you learn about the other side
there where they’re coming from I’ve convinced it a lot of this division that’s out there if people just understood the other side more you do to avoid an incredible amount of conflict and when you understand the history of a community
you understand the history of a Nation or whatever you know what’s is it it takes big steps and not that’s why,
with what we do with our are keeping local history alive features we run every month these are very popular topics you ask a question how do we get our
I stories I’m telling you may have the pipeline is full because there aren’t very many Avenues where people share local history that’s accurate,
and I believe me I’m not an academic historian,
but I’m not going to put anything anything that we do that’s not a hundred percent on point and you know cuz once it’s in print or once it’s on a video it’s true. [24:58] It also it’s one of these things where we do our best and we we vet the stories that come across our our our our table and frankly sometimes jump shocked when people tell me it’s like I think that’s awesome,
so there’s no way I’m going to share that if you don’t from that standpoint but this this perspective on on Veterans Day.
And I was telling stories of local people that have played a role in a lot of These Guys these World War Two Guys you know I forget what the number is but the national level there’s hundreds of dying every day.
And if these stories aren’t recorded if they’re not written down there smoke in the wind in there gone yeah and that’s our goal of what we’re trying to do with our our features we run.
Yeah it’s it’s really cool cuz it’s like you’re really doing like. [25:42] True in a historical broader sense what historians job was which was the chronicle and record you know the past and it’s looks like. [25:50] You know they talk about like the Victor writes history tours like well not just the Victor but.
The one that actually like bothers to write it down and write it into it like a medium of some kind of record the story The Event Bob Colby on your show.
If not he’s on my list to ask but I haven’t had any yet Bob Colby is he’s another fellow history nerd,
yeah you and I heard and then if there’s a totem pole of History nerds he’s on the top yeah a couple runs but I know he and I have had many conversations and you know history,
there there’s three or four perspectives on everything oh yeah and what really happened and how it happened and you kind of get different stories and then,
you got the person who saw the person who experienced in the person that wrote it down.
Innocent and they’re all 3 maybe a little bit different but when you understand that context you know okay now I know I realized what was going on then and just here in Sioux Falls,
the rich history of our community is crazy I mean you know pre-prohibition here in Sioux Falls and you know you had the conflicts between the wets and drys and you know Sioux Falls wasn’t Deadwood but it wasn’t the hero,
it was it was it was a it was an action-packed Community I mean there was a lot of hell yeah.
You think it’s like Dodge City Kansas and wild west and these things that are in the movies Sioux Falls wasn’t that far off the Spectrum from those types of communities the stories are incredible frankly. [27:13] Seth were you with when we we were looking at.
A downtown office for a non-profit we were working for whatever and we looked at the upstairs of this building and it still had. [27:25] Like I don’t want to say it was a brothel but what kind of really looked like the setup for.
A brothel in the upstairs cuz it hadn’t been nobody been up there for like a hundred years.
I guess I don’t remember that I do remember finding some sort of a scrapbook that was. [27:43] I don’t know about some old stuff that I don’t care about it but I need to know the store that’s why he didn’t care about.
That part where we went through that building downtown on 6th and Main. [27:59] It was right by the State Theater was over there and it was the.
Department story kind of place for a long time I don’t know what ended up moving into it but we were looking at it for offices for a non-profit and we went in the upstairs and then.
The upstairs actually branched off into the top of the building next to it and in that like addition area whatever there was a part that hadn’t been remodeled.
Or hadn’t been touched base way since like 19.
05 or something like that and so it looks like an old-timey like Hotel like like it had like there was a board on the wall that said something like
a dollar a night or something like that sleep and stuff like that and yeah there’s there’s a very shadowy history out there in every community.
And what’s funny is I know a woman to off suggest a name after the show she has a Brianna.
And the antique pre-prohibition Brewery on and he literally has.
Does not 10 people a country to have a better selection than this guy has and his wife collects broughal memorabilia I mean.
Cool stuff so it’s.
There’s some interesting things out there here on South Dakota Deadwood South Dakota there’s some interesting stories are out there on that end too but you’re on here Hardwood. [29:21] Did you ever if you ever heard the stories about the that island that was by Yankton on okay that was the one that.
The territorial governor governor was like.
It was basically like a criminal paradise whatever happens out there stays out there or what and it was lit but it was owned by like a either. [29:40] Governor or lieutenant governor of the territory when was Dakota territory on I’ll have to look that up cuz that’s what’s up have you ever had a twin fan boost unusual,
no I haven’t finish Motors Wayne Wayne Wayne is you want to talk about an academic historian that Wayne is a retired lawyer and that he just wrote a book on the history of Jesse James and is it came through
Dakota territory really and it was published about 9 months ago we were in a story on it and Wayne everything is footnoted.
I’m here he needs at least a lawyer and eat everything is like he’s he’s a true historian I would say I’m kind of a 1 to 10 how about a four five.
But Wayne is a solid 10 and he’s got several books that the the Jesse James when it says most recent book which is fantastic. [30:25] And he’s got a lot of hell for it from people that you know what your view Jesse James is a real mythical figure in legendary figures,
you’ll follow the rules are still criminals and we still kill people,
and I but anyhow he’s got some Heck from people you know this often but the facts are the facts and Wayne is not going to back down on that but reason I bring his name up if you brought another wrote another book called Outlaw Dakota.
And at the same type of perspective in the,
you know on the early 1870s you know they were only for territory judges for the entire but Dakota territory and that goes from Montana to North Dakota now South Dakota and you don’t talk about that’s why she saying some of the checkered past
that wild west time read Outlaw Dakota it’s a great book you can get it and go various Outlets but you don’t same thing Wayne takes the same position I do you. [31:19] The stories are out there they need to be written down they need to be obviously vetted and that’s our job to do it and that you know guys like War do it while I’m made a strong impact in the community,
that part of the story is important can kessinger and we’ve done other stores and other people too but a lot of these guys they just said I had a job to do,
I was asked to do it I played my role I did it you know what ages did the modesty and the. [31:47] Just just they weren’t they weren’t bigger than the collective you’re just put their they’re happy to make it through it there’s thankful to make it through it and that’s a very important theme that I needs to be shared needs to be passed on to you.
Further Generations adjust these guys had in the 40s and 50s their sense of like. [32:08] Community over individual without sacrificing Bingo like individual Freedom was pretty. [32:15] Pretty amazing and it’s pretty like you don’t pronounce like it’s shocking out it nowadays can you try to imagine like.
People that would have that attitude where it’s like nowadays it’s just like you know well does this this thing we’re engaging in does this like,
exchange rate me as a person like individually and somebody you know you look at like recruiting for nonprofits and like you know volunteer organizations stuff like that there are a lot of like in the younger generation that are very motivated and do get involved but,
when I get involved they tend to want to like it which would diaspora stuff where is back then you can have more monolithic it’s like if you’re all tearing you’re probably volunteering for the Red Cross and it’s like and then the US Army is a fake like,
thing that everybody is like pouring their Collective energy into one of the other stories of a World War 2 veteran that to me it was one of the first guys we featured he was a gentleman by the name of Claude home I’ll clutter 98 in February,
and he made the news here about a month or two ago with the the Sanford golf event there at the Country Club. [33:20] And a Jack Nicklaus was there and Claude how he’s 98 he golfs you 3 or 4 times a week still today and he walks the course,
and I know he said he’s the best 98 year old golfer in the country which is probably true and when he met Jack Nicklaus it was a big event for him because you know he was a 1938 graduate of Washington High School.
N. Claude and I went down to the Washington Pavilion and if you’ve ever been up on the third floor kind of in the back there they called I believe it’s called Alumni Hall,
will a captive wash Pavilion kind of a wash in high school
original to the way it was when it was a school shirt and there’s all these trophy cases in there and of course there’s the 1938 State High School golf trophy in there,
nightclub took me right over to that thing and said hey
I was on that team I was the fourth best golfer Leah see I’ve never seen that part of the I would say it’s on the West Side 3rd floor okay if you just ask for another day or so I don’t call it’s it’s pretty cool and you can’t kessinger the gentleman I spoke of earlier
he played a key role,
you know you’re keeping that history and putting the history together but I mean Washington High has incredible history in there and you know what to talk about Claude hone he you talked about volunteering for the Army or what-have-you you know this was. [34:35] Time when he 1938 graduate high school 1940-41 is when he enlisted and he went down to the Army recruiter and I think it was.
Right before Pearl Harbor is what is what it when he when he signed on
and his goal was to our his mission was to sign up with the Army but he went down there about 12 in the Army recruiter was out to lunch,
guy was there so that’s the story of how Claude became a marine but what was crazy about that is how you know Claude hone
he’s living incredible life here like I said he just turned 98 and in February what’s your 99 I’ll be here very shortly but he was after the war.
He was a realtor in 1953 he was issued real estate license number one in the state of South Dakota.
Now there’s about 15 16000 license
realtors that have been gone to the state but Claudia’s just lived an incredible life and you know some of the things he he made the comment to me as we were driving around once he said you’re at the toughest part about getting old is a all your friends die. [35:41] Send us some people that happens to them and they become lonely and they can’t meet new people and they just kind of become isolated and depressed and they just kind of physical away and Claude looked at me said my goal is to meet one new person everyday and Garrett and I’m glad I met you,
and I’m like wow it’s freaking awesome man that’s and then he is a very wise but you know Claude was a he was a Marine,
and are the opportunity presented itself to he was a drill instructor type role of Sergeant drill sergeant in down to the San Diego area,
and this was at a time when they needed pilots in the Guadalcanal.
And he saw the letter come across or the whatever correspondence it was and he said to his. [36:25] Overseeing officers that hey can I apply for this because I tell you what write yourself a letter.
Put my name on it and send it in I’ll sign it and so Claude end up getting that flight school type rolling he ended up becoming a pilot and he flew Corsair,
which if your phone is it was you familiar the Corsair it’s kind of I don’t know to me it looks like.
Like a bumblebee in a way out those in the wings are just gets swept wings I love that it just it doesn’t look like it can do it it can do if you’ve ever I mean if you’re really old TV buff. [37:00] Was it Black Sheep Squadron on on TV that they they flew they flew corsairs corsairs are just like beautiful.
Fighter aircraft that mean they’re they’re up there with the P-51 Mustang for me just as far as like a static and being like all It’s A Beautiful World War II that’s the way you feel about it yeah right,
all of the previous division of the military that had it didn’t feel the same way so they basically dumped it all the breeds and said hey you can have this thing,
without knowing how good of an actual plane it was and unclog clogged fluid Corsair and clots houses over there kind of by CJ Callaway’s on the south part of town,
if you know where to look his garage he’s got a wind vane on top of the garage that’s about a 45-foot replica of the Corsair and I mean the thing is awesome,
and I asked him I said so where’d you get that thing he’s so I got it at an air show over in Oshkosh about 20 years ago.
And I ordered it and then I would have came back to Hillary just right there. [38:01] We came back to Sioux Falls it came in the mail and my wife asked me how much I paid for that thing and I told her don’t worry about it.
So I said good for you Claude and it’s still there on his garage on the wind vane but I bring this up because that course there was a but you can see it like in this photo it’s got the very distinctive once you know what to look for there’s no question.
I would have course areas and you’ll clot in in 1944 or 1945 I mean he was dropping bombs on Iwo Jima and the Tokyo and know this is kind of cool is that,
deciphered Claude stories numerous times and everytime I hear him they’re exactly the same so to hear him talk about you know some of his dog fights and,
a battles that they had it in the air I mean it’s just like you’re right there with him today and the one of the examples that he talks about is in February of 45,
when there is on bombing missions to Tokyo right so they would bomb and then they would drop down as low as they possibly could,
and then is he would fly out of Tokyo they would follow the river right because the the anti-aircraft weapons,
couldn’t fire download they had to go up a certain degrees so if you got below that they would sneak away and I’m worried,
that’s awesome man. That sounds like freaking it’s awesome and terrifying it sounds like Luke Skywalker
looking at a George Lucas unlike what was his motivation and in some of the background stories for. [39:28] How he wrote Star the Star Wars oh yes Trilogy it’s in a lot of established that a huge influence answer that’s why.
What spaceships would fight like it very very much like frame for frame shop for I’ve seen a documentary where they’ve actually taken. [39:48] The newsreel or the historical footage that George Lucas took and then like put it with the Star Wars thing in the fighters moving the exact same way and that’s how he choreographed.
Off of World War II dogfight. [39:59] But it is just kind of crazy Ted to sit here and then once I found out that George Lucas was a huge motivator World War II history in the in his creative,
storytelling well I’m sitting across from the guy that potentially was one of the motivating factors for that Luke Skywalker component and I say this totally transparent. It’s awesome is that style of,
was one of was brought on by one of God’s what superiors see let’s try this and it worked so they kept doing it that way and then it passed on other areas in. [40:36] The war they actually there’s some damn in Germany that they did the same type of thing with that strategy and to just do some research on it is just crazy to hear it directly from the horse’s mouth,
they went through lesson you’ll Claude after the war he can move back to South Dakota started his life and he had a good friendship with Joe Foss,
and one of the first people that Joe Foss called when they started the South Dakota Air Guard or sure know that whole process was Claude
was on that short list of people that Joe Foss called and they had a strong friendship and relationship throughout life and it’s just kind of a great story to share with people and actually
the future we ran on Claude was probably one of our best received stories that we did we just people contact us and I had no idea but what’s funny is how did I get here about Claude right
one of his neighbors we did a story on the seven year old kid who was a jet ski right okay and this 7 year old kid in for us. [41:33] Badass seven-year-old right and I’m talking him he’s like a man you need to meet my friend I’m a guy who’s your friend I’m figure skateboarders yeah he’s like my neighbor fought in the War.
What he kept talking about how he fought for these planes and stuff and I’m like I do need to meet your neighbor but that’s how the whole process of.
You should meet this guy you should meet that guy and I got introduced to Claude by a seven-year-old boy who looked up to him as well so that was pretty cool. [41:59] When did you start Gathering those stories in particular like the.
World War II or world word sort of centered or Media company off about five six years.
I don’t doubt you don’t like I said there’s there’s a vacuum of the stories that are out there that people don’t share cuz they don’t have an Avenue to do it.
And Usher X you never know what somebody is going to tell you one of the other examples that is probably the,
cool Astoria in my mind outside of what we’ve already discussed obviously is 2006-2007 somewhere around there,
South Dakota magazine ran a story on a gentleman that was from South Dakota that was in one of the famous pictures that he would Jima on Mount suribachi.
Yeah everybody know was the famous flag-raising was taken by a jewel Rosenthal that won the Pulitzer Prize,
and then all the other campaigns that took place where they use that image is kind of the motivating factor to I want to say they raised 30 billion dollars whatever it was it was crazy,
in a 6-month period for the 1940s the Battle of Iwo Jima obviously is Iconic and people know that,
well-established but after they took the picture of the famous flag-raising are there was another picture that was taken which is called the gung-ho photo. [43:17] Sinigang whole photo was taken by Joe Rosenthal as well and there’s 18 Marines in that picture of which 17 of them were.
Immediately identifier identify you shortly thereafter but there was one Gentleman on the far left that had his that had his hat off in the 04 from 1945 to about 1978.
1980 somewhere on there there was just a question mark above his head nobody knew who he was and that gentleman that was determined to be a guy named Jack Thurman,
who’s from Mitchell South Dakota grew up on a farm just Northeast of town and that he was the oldest that he is the oldest of 12 kids shenda from.
His age to his youngest brother’s age there’s 27 years difference there so it’s kind of interesting from that standpoint I got to know Jack’s younger brother Kevin,
the gentleman whose 27 years younger and has a kid Kevin would see this image and say that’s my brother. [44:16] Yeah but it was a time when you know obviously after World War II there are a lot of guys that,
when I came back they had it some time to adjust and we caught PTSD or you know sometimes guys just didn’t want to talk about what they went to use the SD Warrior’s Heart it’s right it’s a thing that’s been around forever had a label or not
people still do dealt with these issues and and Jack just kind of kept to himself and didn’t share this part of his life
and that was interesting I’ll take a step back here these marines that were descended to the.
Top of Mount suribachi they were battle tested and they’ve been through it all there’s some other gentleman that were.
In that battle toot toot toot to clean that Summit of it were very well known and they knew each other very well,
and I might have my regiments mix up here but most of them were from the 28th Marine where Jack was in the 29th Marine
or vice versa so when they got up to the top of the mountain there they all know each other but they weren’t sure who this other kid wasn’t break they probably didn’t care if there wasn’t a picture taken so that’s why he kind of slipped through the cracks there for so many years and.
Like I said in the late 70s early 80s Jack who now lives in the Denver area
started to talk at local rotary clubs in Lions Club type presentations and overtime
you know what came out that he was the one that was in the picture and South Dakota magazine to that story on him in the 2006 2007 time. And I also thought that was cool but in my mind I’m like. [45:42] Who is this guy you know we don’t have some South Dakota noise from Mitchell but
awesome but let’s find out more about him and I contacted Kevin his younger brother and then the other the wheels kind of just opened up a little bit for more storytelling with that and he’ll.
My wife and I are the founders of age media and this is a 2002 I go to nutty’s bar here in town.
Can I be just yell and ask her what her name is and she said what can you keep a secret and I said Wilshire.
And she said it was so can I and she walked away that is freaking awesome so I have pursued her a little bit more and I found out she was just joking and first thing we talked about was how we both feel love Johnny Cash write.
I want one of the one of the. [46:31] Famous songs that Johnny Cash sang was The Ballad of Ira Hayes so yeah you know the ballad of Ira Hayes was a poem that was written in Bob Dylan sang that song Johnny Cash did as well,
but the story of Ira Hayes is closely tied to Jack Thurman,
and World War II here with little witch with me with Starry I mount suribachi and in the picture where the Jack was unidentified you can see right below him is Ira Hayes. [46:54] And it’s kind of interesting because he knew Ira Hayes was a Pima Indian and he know he was that he was a marine and a jack met Ira in Marine training in Hawaii about 8:10 months before did the Battle of Iwo Jima so they had a friendship,
and he had a relationship and was kind of interesting to hear Jack tell the story,
if you’re not familiar with Ira Hayes you know the song goes you know he call him drunken Ira Hayes he won’t answer anymore The Whiskey Drinking Indian or the Marine that went to war yeah you know obviously he was dealing with some post-traumatic stress issues after World War II.
Cute essentially a poster boy for the for the military to help raise funds they toured around the country
and you know what some of these roles where he didn’t want to be in it necessarily booty was cast into it yeah and you go to all these parties and obviously to raise funds and what have you but there’s also have access to alcohol and everything else that came up on the inside.
And a jack and Ira had a very good friendship and what’s crazy to hear Jack’s perspective there on the the summit of Mount suribachi it’s windy the Japanese firing at him and stuff and I were his sister Jack Thurman for Mitchell South Dakota,
basically hey man cover me I’m going to go help them place that flag up there so Jack was within Neil 10 20 feet of where it happened it is just incredibly hear that come from his mouth,
and I know the friendship was there and that was very interesting to me. [48:19] Is after the war that friendship was still there and Ira Hayes was famous for a you know hitchhiking across the country to go see this person or go that person,
Ira actually came to Mitchell to see Jack Thurman and this was his answer you should have been here.
And obviously this is a time before you know.
Modern communication so when Ira hitchhiked from sacaton Arizona to Mitchell obviously probably just had a backpack. [48:49] Maybe a blanket was probably dirty disheveled maybe smelled like a whiskey or what have you and he knocked on the door looking for Jack and Jacks mom,
who will he know she was a hard-nosed a woman mother of 12 you have some disheveled Indian come to your door who you don’t know.
She just said go away and you’re not welcome to come back.
And I jack came home later that day and his mother says I’ll give you edited version yeah it was some guy was here looking for you,
and borrow one on his way in Jackson and you should have him stay I would love to see him and away he went in a year or two later he was he was he was dead,
so it’s just crazy how that close of a tie.
Can come to our area and will Jack story you know it’s well vetted it’s well well known and or it’s well.
Documented not necessarily well known you know we were really excited to share that to take that one step further this famous gung-ho photo. [49:50] There’s 18 Marines in that picture and then when you think about it I heard something from somebody who said oh my uncle is in that picture as well.
I see you got to be kidding me so I did a little research on it and sure enough there’s a gentleman in the middle of the photo his name is Grady dice.
He was he was one of the more established seasoned marines that I was speaking of the head it more experience
where Jack was just basically 18 year old kid and this was his first major conflict that he was part of what grade ice he was in that picture as well and he was a farm kid from the kind of Chamberlain Reliance area.
So it just absolutely amazes me that in this famous Marine history photo there’s two marines from South Dakota. [50:33] Floors me yeah it blows me away it’s like South Dakota like the people here I don’t know what it is about us but we are always disproportionately represented in like,
especially military history like big time like my local American Legion my my sister she’s really active there she put together a slideshow of all the different veterans who,
are you don’t have lived or still live in Wessington and we were only talking like a Tower 200 people. [51:03] But all the slides in that like I had no idea it at the thing goes on for like 6 minutes and it’s just like slide slide slide it’s like. [51:13] Show me older guys that like I know a lot of the stories I grew up there so I know a lot of like a guys were in Vietnam War and World War II were few of them where I’m just like really.
They were like a vice admiral in the Navy or something like that might want once again if it’s not documented it’s smoking the wind and it’s gone yeah because you know it’s not that you need to like. [51:34] Worship these people but it is something where it’s you know you need to show reverence and thank you and understand that you know these guys like Jack or Grady or you’ll can kessinger at home or went Wong
yeah they were just like you know your average high school kid or college kid things change they had to play the role away they went they did a job that came back.
And that’s a powerful thing for Collective communities to understand and like like I said it it just amazes me.
That the 02 kids who grew up 70 miles from each other.
Fought in the War 7000 miles away from each year from home yet and met on the summit you did this this month,
this photo has been looked at by literally millions of people but nobody’s identified that and it’s not like I did something that was incredible,
it’s just I looked at it from a different perspective had different connections it’s been able to see something that,
you know the other soon South Dakota marines that absolutely think this is the coolest thing ever in for my standpoint
what are we producing we’re producing content that people find Value in and if people see value in this awesome.
That’s what we’re out to you telling great stories and that’s that’s really what you know we say content in the modern like media marketing like language or whatever but it’s like in the end it’s all stories I mean you’re telling like. [52:57] You’re telling the story of the people and not just in the issue we just came out with this month that we featured a gentleman by the name of Delmar Strunk.
He’s a gentleman that lives in Scotland he’s 96 now and at Del Mar was one of the hears I consider myself a history buff. [53:14] I use before I use Nair it okay I gotcha well they’re both accurate to describe is there something I can learn you know I’m always open-minded to doing it
and obviously everybody’s familiar with the European theater against the Nazis in the South Pacific against the Japanese yeah but I wasn’t familiar with
Leah of the Asian mainland a battle that was fought in Burma and Delmar Strunk this gentleman from who now lives in Scotland he was one of Merrill’s Marauders
oh and I you don’t have a Merrill’s Marauders they were a special Lee trained group of military guys that the jungle warfare was there special LP Special Forces they made it,
purebred couple things 750 to A Thousand Miles Through the Jungle. [53:59] And they are outnumbered versus Japanese soldiers also yeah you know 10 to 1,
28 words for it 20 years previous to Vietnam and y’all get some of their tactics and strategies and we’re from you know very very well
documented in cuz they were successful and Delmar
you’ll grow up on a farm here kind of by the Irene in Yankton areas and he had some hardships in the thirties and life wasn’t that easy for him and when you’re fighting over there you got malaria you got all these all these ailments.
Should have knocked him out he just kept chugging along and a gentleman by the name of Randall DeWitt,
who’s another one of these academic historians I’d call him he lives in in Mitchell he wrote a book about Randall of all for your book about Del Mar about 4 years ago. [54:49] And I were stories jungle stories about Delmar Strunk and we just basically recapped Randall’s book in this month’s issue and one of the interesting feedback I got it from two separate people who.
What we wasn’t at the same room they said you need my bus driver he did that cuz Delmar was more known for the driving school bus and Scott all for then what he did in the in World War II so fun stories well. [55:17] That is that’s amazing so yeah I’m really looking forward to,
it looks like you brought me a stack here I’m really looking forward to going through that and yeah I just history buff just I eat it up and I know a lot of people to community you so should absolutely check out some of the Publications and stuff and,
where to use that to slide right into our shame. [55:40] Sioux Empire podcast proudly presents this week’s Shameless plugs part of the show where you let people
this is your soapbox to be like we’re on Twitter we’re on this this is our website where can we learn more about you what you do and and find out where they can find these publication,
we always ask for a contact if you are able to share next June is the 75th anniversary of D-Day. [56:09] And if you know somebody that is still,
able to share their stories of their involvement during D-Day we would love to meet those guys so you can contact us at age media. Pub is our website,
check it out feel free to reach out and there’s we have a many people that would like to interview these gentlemen and if we can put something together in the next June to commemorate that we’d love to do it,
I mentioned earlier that a big part of what we do with all our media Outlets as we try to connect people,
either through a local history to find common ground or different tools that are out there we just came out with an app called Sioux Falls connected.
Which is a mobile platform that offers incredible opportunities to connect people to local level local businesses and just kind of tight at not together check out Sioux Falls connected.com you can download it at the app store Google Play,
check it out and let you know the opportunity to meet new people and connect we help provide that through that app Sioux Falls connected awesome.
Do you have any Seamus plugs for us this week I will shamelessly plug my dad he was a World War II vet so yeah thanks.
I love you I miss you and yeah that yeah very cool how was your dad when you were born man. [57:31] 67 not a boy that’s awesome. [57:37] See I’ve been keeping in that theme I’m going to shamelessly plug Grandpa Robert mordhorst.
You know if he’s the one that was in Korea I’m going to seriously plug veteran friends of mine like Cody Sergeant been happy. [57:54] Whole bunch of guys in my fraternity who were in Iraqi freedom.
Let’s eat my brother-in-law Kevin Clark he’s been he’s an engineer for the Army and.
God knows how many tours of Duty in different places he’s been he’s been active since like the first Gulf War and he’s been all over Afghanistan and Iraq now so thank you so much.
To you and everybody you know we love you guys thank you so much for your sacrifice and everything you’ve done we we can’t express that enough
and now getting to more generic Shameless plugs that we always do whenever episode here going to go ahead and once again shamelessly plug,
patreon if you really like what we do here at the Sioux Empire podcast bring you local news makers local story sings like that and you want to support us you can go to patreon.com Sioux Falls to
you don’t contribute to the show we put a lot of exclusive content on that site.
Lots of behind-the-scenes stuff on there and you can check it all out at soup at patreon.com Sioux Falls a huge thank you to patreon Patron Matthew Poulsen.
And then we always plug supercon. [59:06] Which you know they’re all set up for her for next year that should be pretty exciting live 605 the local streaming radio station good guys over there you can listen to all of our podcast at various times.
Ion Life 605 along with a lot of great local music in a countdown of that so be sure to check that out. [59:26] I am with that I think we’re all set. Thank you so much for coming out.
Just fab review great stories I can’t wait to to read more. [59:38] Yeah and we will see you all next week.