whole nine yards and "Smash" Chandler

Sam Clements SClements at NEO.RR.COM
Sat Dec 25 21:24:03 UTC 2004

I think I've discovered something new. (Although some of you long time researchers--Doug Wilson-might have already known this).

Fred Shapiro on 25 April 2004 posted to ADS-L his new find of the term in the Ft. Walton Beach(FL) paper from 25 April 1969.  This was in a real estate ad, and is currently the third oldest cite.  A discussion followed about Ft. Walton Beach being the home of an Air Force Base.


Using Newspaperarchive, I searched for "Smash Chandler."

And found a _Playground News_ 13 Nov. 1968 picture with caption showing him and a nurse.  Both were attending a reunion of the 311th Air Commando Squadron.  

Text reads "VIET NAM VETERANS--Lt. Col. "Smash" Chandler and USAF nurse Lt. Jane Lombardi came from Offutt AFB, Omaha, Nebraska to attend the reunion of the 311th Air Commando Squadron held at the Black Angus on the beach Saturday night.  Col. Chandler was one of the main characters in Elaine Shepard's book about the Viet Nam war,  "The DOOM Pussy."  He is now information officer at Offutt.  Lt. Lombardi, also stationed at Offutt, was recently awarded the Bronze Star for her work loading patients under fire at Da Nang Air Base last Jan. 30. (Pegggy May)  "

So, this would provide a newspaper ad-writer a source of the phrase. Of course, it could have been common AF slanguage, and Chandler didn't bring the phrase with him to Florida.  But he could also have been the vector.

 I wonder if any researchers would share where Chandler grew up, when did he enter Air Force, when was he in Viet Nam, etc?  Doug, anyone?

I guess Barry can plan his next trip now--Offutt AFB.  Better wait till Spring.  :)

Sam Clements

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