by Cal Tobin, Jr.
13 February 1980
Aluminum showers bring no flowers,
That's what the Tower Flowers say.
You crash, we dash; You die, we cry,
That's what the Crispy Critters say.
Doesn't explain what was done by the powers,
Or why they did it that way.
What happens in seconds seems like hours,
Tuesday was another rotten day.
Six brother Marines died Tuesday night,
The result of a midair crash.
They were flying it home, ending their flight,
Then they were wreckage and ash.
The 46 hit the break at 110 at 2 thou,
The flight was almost ended.
They'd be home by first mid-rats chow,
See that 53 below, external suspended?
We don't know what the distraction was,
That occurred then inside the cockpits.
No one lived that could tell us the cause,
Or why six men cashed in their chips.
Eibach, Long and King were in the Frog,
Styveart, Pennington and Howard were in the 53's log.
164 owned the 46, none of them survived,
462 owned the 53, Rivera, flung out, survived.
A thousand Marines attended in Hangar One,
A tragedy and a miracle, what's done is done.
We buried Ken Ringer the day before, it don't seem fair,
We got the blues and they got The Breaks of Naval Air.
* * *
Cal Tobin, Jr.