The obvious story today is President Bush. He is our last sitting president to have had active service in WWII, and he is of course famously known as the youngest Navy pilot during that conflict. But I won't bore you to tears with anymore about that. You know as well as I that there is wall-to-wall coverage all week.
So we will move on. We'll actually start in Bahrain this morning. Have you heard about this one? The top US Navy commander in the region has died unexpectedly.
The Pentagon is being very tight-lipped about the entire affair. No details about the discovery of the body, any details, or cause of death have been released, except for them to categorize it as a "suicide". As was sardonically noted during the Cold War in Russia - Perhaps it was a 9-millimeter suicide?
The mystery surrounding a decorated Navy admiral's apparent suicide death in Bahrain over the weekend has deepened as key details about how he apparently took his own life remain unknown.
Vice Admiral Scott Stearney, 58, was found dead in his residence in Bahrain on Saturday but it is not yet known who found him, when his body was found or what the circumstances behind the discovery were.
All that the Navy will say is that there is no foul play suspected but that its Criminal Investigative Service is probing his death alongside Bahrain's Ministry of Interior.
A spokesman for the Navy's Criminal Investigative Service told DailyMail.com on Monday: 'This investigation is ongoing so we cannot provide any comment at this time.
'There is no set timeline for how long such investigations take to complete.'
Vice Admiral Stearney had an illustrious 36-year career in the Navy before taking control of the US Fifth Fleet, which controls the Navy's presence in the Persian Gulf, Red Sea, Arabian Sea, in May this year.
The Fifth Fleet's position is one of the most crucial in the Navy's infrastructure.
It is planted in the middle of several of the US's most unpredictable allies and adversaries; Iran, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman, and Kuwait.
We'll move on to my backyard. This past Saturday, the US Navy commissioned its newest warship
, the USS Thomas Hudner, right here at the Black Falcon pier in South Boston. The ship is named for a Medal of Honor recipient originally from Fall River, MA. As always, it is worth checking out his MoH citation:
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as a pilot in Fighter Squadron 32, while attempting to rescue a squadron mate whose plane, struck by antiaircraft fire and trailing smoke, was forced down behind enemy lines. Quickly maneuvering to circle the downed pilot and protect him from enemy troops infesting the area, Lt. (j.g.) Hudner risked his life to save the injured flier who was trapped alive in the burning wreckage. Fully aware of the extreme danger in landing on the rough mountainous terrain, and the scant hope of escape or survival in subzero temperature, he put his plane down skillfully in a deliberate wheels-up landing in the presence of enemy troops. With his bare hands, he packed the fuselage with snow to keep the flames away from the pilot and struggled to pull him free. Unsuccessful in this he returned to his crashed aircraft and radioed other airborne planes, requesting that a helicopter be dispatched with an ax and fire extinguisher. He then remained on the spot despite the continuing danger from enemy action and, with the assistance of the rescue pilot, renewed a desperate but unavailing battle against time, cold, and flames. Lt. (j.g.) Hudner's exceptionally valiant action and selfless devotion to a shipmate sustain and enhance the highest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service.
We'll wrap up today by noting that it is the 'season for giving'. (It's a time when the greedy...give a dime to the needy - Bob Dorough) If you are thinking of charitable contributions to our veterans, or indeed, any other community agency, make sure you know where your money is going
before you write that check.
Avoid these veterans charities
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is out with a new list of bogus charities. In some cases, the FTC says the following charities pocketed 95% of donations intended for veterans:
American Disabled Veterans Foundation
Foundation for American Veterans, Inc.
Healing Heroes Network
Help the Vets, Inc.
Healing American Heroes, Inc.
Military Families of America
National Vietnam Veterans Foundation
Veterans Fighting Breast Cancer
VietNow National Headquarters, Inc.
Meanwhile, CharityWatch.org singled out four other veterans charities after they received failing marks in its charity rankings:
AMVETS National Service Foundation (F)
Military Order of the Purple Heart Service Foundation (F)
Paralyzed Veterans of America (F)
Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. (F)