Solomon Islander who rescued JFK passes away

Eroni Kumana, the Solomon Islander who helped rescue JFK and his PT-109 crew in 1943, died earlier this month.

6 comments

  1. Ronnie Wayne says:

    Without this man there would have been no one to defeat Nixon in 60. No one to stand up to LeMay, Kruschev, and Castro in the way JFK did, without a war. A nuclear war. No Peace Corps or Moon Race (and all the technology we enjoy today as a result). No send in the National Guard support for Civil Rights that Johnson inherited.
    Thank you Mr. Kumana.

    • Bill Clarke says:

      What Johnson inherited was a mess in Vietnam that was becoming worse every day. Johnson also inherited a mess with Civil Rights that was becoming worse.

      If you think JFK could have ever got a Civil Rights Bill through Congress you’ve read too many Camelot books.

      • Gerry Simone says:

        Bill, if Viet Nam was a mess, why did LBJ escalate U.S. involvement into a full scale war?

        In any event, I agree with Ronnie Wayne’s remarks, and I have the VHS and DVD of the National Geographic documentary on PT-109 that shows a Kennedy nephew I believe, re-uniting with that islander.

        It was touching. There’s a memorial to President Kennedy at the island (I think a statue or bust).

        http://www.amazon.com/National-Geographic-The-Search-Kennedys/dp/B00006G8K6

        And a conference at the Kennedy Library with Dr. Ballard, who discovered the wreck of PT-109.

        • Bill Clarke says:

          Gerry Simone August 27, 2014 at 6:58 pm

          “Bill, if Viet Nam was a mess, why did LBJ escalate U.S. involvement into a full scale war?”

          I think, Gerry, that it was simply an attempt to straighten out the mess. A mess that was steadily becoming worse after the removal of Ngo Dinh Diem. Back then we didn’t walk away from a problem just because it became messy. Today I don’t know what the hell we are doing in foreign affairs. And remember that in 1965 the war wasn’t the big ugly bear that it later became.

          I commented on Ronnie’s message because of the inference that LBJ “inherited” civil right from Kennedy. As if LBJ would never have considered civil rights had not JFK started the movement. This is simply wrong. Johnson passed the first Civil Rights Bill of 1957. The first one passed since 1875.

          We hear that every good that LBJ did came from JFK. Until we get to the war and then it really gets ugly and the truth takes a beating.

          I think JFK was a man of great personal courage and he was cool under fire. More so than any that have came after him.

  2. Photon says:

    Actually JFK was rescued (along with his crew) by a fellow PT boat skipper named Liebenow. I read his unpublished manuscript about his experiences several years ago.

    • Jim Igo says:

      Paul May, I am challenging you to provide documented proof, not a “unpublished manuscript” that Liebenow was in fact, in the navy at the time, a PT boat skipper and a few witnesses with valid testimonies that he was indeed the man who “actually JFK was rescued” by. Jim Igo

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