To the class of 2020,


I wish we had known when our “last” would be our last.


The last late night trip after sports events. The last “hey” in the hallway, The last drive out of the parking lot.


I wish we hadn’t taken for granted the things that we thought we hated but now we realize we’ll miss them with everything inside of us.


Although it’s not set in stone, the things we looked forward to our entire lives, walking across the stage, flipping the tassel to the other side and throwing our caps in the air, might be taken from us. The last time we would walk across the field with our friends, the last picture with some people we may never speak to again. I


I hope we all find comfort and peace in these times. My heart goes out to those affected physically, but those who are also having their final memories of high school taken from them.


Class of 2020 forever.


Ariel Jagielski, Crestview


In April 1969, North Korea shot down a U.S. Navy EC-121 reconnaissance plane over the Sea of Japan, killing everyone on board.


Because the crash site was closer to Vladivostok, USSR than the U.S. Naval base in Japan, the Soviet Navy was the first on the scene. When President Nixon requested Soviet assistance, the Russians obliged by sending three of their destroyers.


And for the next four days. the U.S. and Soviets Navies took part in a rare, joint-U.S.-Soviet search-and-rescue operation. In the end, only two bodies were recovered.


My article on the topic, titled “Improbable Allies,” co-authored by a Russian journalist, will appear soon in the Spring 2020 issue of the U.S. Navy War College Review. here: https://digital-commons.usnwc.edu/nwc-review/vol73/iss2/


A photo I supplied to the journal of one of the Soviet destroyers that took part in this search-and-rescue operation appears on the front cover.


Bill Streifer, Crestview