Tom Ayres in the cockpit of a Navy Blue Angles jet fighter in the mid-1960s. He flew with th Angles that day as part of a story he was doing for The Dallas Times Herald.
"History breathes. Its heart beats. Just like those who make it, history changes and remains the same. It repeats its triumphs and tragedies. History is little people caught up in great events and great people turning insignificant events into momentous ones. History is madman and genius, warmonger, peacemaker, idealist and cynic - actors all, playing out their roles on the greatest stage of all."
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Travis L Ayres
Early 1970. 2am, on board the USS Regulus: We were still at sea but almost home... not close enough that I could see the lights of San Francisco but close enough that my old portable radio could pick up the AM signal of one of the city's Top-Forty radio stations. Soon after we reached "The States" and our home port of Alameda, I would be making the transition from Petty Officer 3rd Class to civilian- without- a- job. As my Navy days had dwindled down I had struggled with the decision of what career path I would take. It seemed logical to me to try Commercial Art (as Graphic Art was called back then) since I had been drawing since the time I learned what a pencil was and I knew I had some talent. There was only one other job that interested me and that was being a radio disc jockey. Unlike a possible career in Art, I had no clue if I had any potential talent to be an on-air broadcaster. Also, I had no clue how one would get into radio. Then as I sat there on the deck of my ship, I heard an unfamiliar song on that Frisco station. It was rock. It was country. It was Mississippi River Delta blues. It was "Proud Mary" by a new band, Creedence Clearwater Revival. . And as simple as that, when that song ended I knew I wanted to make my living playing that kind of music on the radio. For the next 35 years, that's exactly what I did. Thanks, John Fogerty.
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