Abilene Reporter News, May 27, 1954

Abilene Reporter News

May 27, 1954

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Issue date: Thursday, May 27, 1954

Pages available: 116

Previous edition: Wednesday, May 26, 1954

Next edition: Friday, May 28, 1954

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Publication name: Abilene Reporter News

Location: Abilene, Texas

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Abilene Reporter-News, The (Newspaper) - May 27, 1954, Abilene, Texas POSSIBLE SHOWERS EVENING FINAL "WITHOUT OR WITH OFFENSE TO FRIENDS OR FOES WE SKETCH YOUR WORLD EXACTLY AS IT VOL. LXXI1I, NO. 343 Atsociated Prea (Af) ABILENE, TEXAS, THURSDAY EVENING, MAY 27, PAGES IN .TWO SECTIONS PRICE DAILY 5c, SUNDAY lOc Cohn Tells Role; Hits Army Block BANK ON GENEVA ABOARD bodies of some planes of the big carrier are in the background. Ens. of the 91 known dead killed in fire and explosion aboard Lloyd McNatt, son of Mrs. L. C. McNatt, of Eastland, was the carrier Bennington are checked for identification one of the navy men killed in the blast. Wednesday on the hanger deck of the vessel, Stored SCORES TRAPPED BY FIRE EaSllflfld M3I1 Ghostly Death Count Begins Killed in Fire In Mysterious Ship Blast QUONSET-POINT. ,K. I. Navy counted-91 known dead today andy.201 injured, many of them critically, in plosiiiSfire aboard the'aircraft''c'2u> rier Bennington 75 miles at sea. 1'he carrier, a proud numerous battle honors in War D, was rocked by the disaster early yesterday off New England. A violent blast on the second or third deck below the flight deck was followed by searing flames which roared through many for- ward compartments. Then came at least one.more explosion. Scores were trapped in 'sleeping quarters. Many suffocated. Many perished in the flames. A four-man court of inquiry, headed by Rear Adm. John M. Hoskins, commandant of the Quon- set Naval Air Station, "was named to begin investigating today. Secretary of the Navy Charles S. Thomas, who flew to Quonset for a quick inspection, and Capt. William F. Raborn, Jr., Benning- ton skipper for only a month, said there was no indication of sabo- tage. RabQrt, from Oklahoma City, said the cause of the explosion is "a mystery-to me." "All -leads have proved ground- he said. "There was nothing explosive in the area where the explosions took place." The "best he said, is that the blast occurred "pos- sibly ;it- the- fuse iriagb-1 zine." He emphaslzed'that formation had not-been confirmed. squadrons of about 130 metfeach which make up Air Task Group 181, based at the Oceana Naval Air Station near Norfolk, Va. The squadrons board- ed the Bennington last weekend. The blast shook the Benuington just after the .first of the four squadrons had been common practice aboard carriers nearing air bases. "Realizing a serious catastrophe occurred we launched the rest of the air group to.free the decks for casualty Raborn said. Two Navy and four Coast Guard helicopters met the carrier 20 miles from port and. evacuated scores of seriously injured to the Newport Naval Hospital. They'd pick up injured on the deck of the carrier, fly to Newport, then return for more. Tne'y continued until the carrier docked slightly more than six hours after the blast. Capt. Raborn had highest praise for, all personnel aboard the car- rier, which carries a normal complement of Ens. Robert Grant of Brooklyn, N.Y., his hair and eyebrows singed and raw bleeding cuts on his ankles, refused medical atten- tion to aid in the evacuation of other wounded. He told of "five guys" literally vanishing when a hatch was blown in. iy, blast. He said he formed a hand chain with some nlen'who worked their way to the starboard side .forward.- .On .the vrayi'' he apparently lost ness out. James F. Witham, 23, of Somer- ville, Mass., a quartermaster, said the escape hatch-from his com- partment was "cluttered with bo- dies of injured and dying men." "We couldn't open the escape hatch to help them and the heat was he said. Seaman Edward Cushman of Milford. Conn., and two .compan- ions said they "listened" to their trapped buddies die from suffoca- tion as shipmates tried to reach them. Cushman was'able to talk with the trapped men by phone. Still stunned, he told newsmen "I talked with those guys for an hour and three quarters. They were pleading to hurry up and.get to them before they ran out of air. "We told them to lie face down with wet rags over their faces, but it didn't help much. The last words I heard were 'This is my last breath.' AND RADIO HELICOPTERS AWAIT "helicop- ters sit on the deck of the aircraftc'arrier Bennington as she speeds up Narragansett 'Bay Wednesday with her dead and injured after a-fire aboard-the-vessel. One elevator is below deck apparently preparing-to-bring injured to the helicopters. The Bennington was. return- ing to the Quonset Naval Air Stateion following a routine trip along the EasternrSeabqard. Aboard Ship EASTLAND, May 27 (RNS) Ens., Lloyd. McNatt, 32, of East and a former Abilenian, was one of the men who died in'the air craft carrier Bennington tragedj News of his'aeath. came Wee nesday night to his mother, Mrs L. C. McNatt of Eastland. Details of his death are no mown. Ensign McNatt was born in Abi lene and attended school there un :il he was 15. He was graduated from Brackenridge High School ii San Antonio. He entered the Navy Sept. 12 1939 and served throughout Worli War U. He had' been assigned to thi Bennington for five years. The ensign's wife arid Linda, 10, live in Brooklyn. Other survivors are two broth rs, Chad McNatt of Brooklyn, als in the Navy, and L.. C. Jr. of For Worth; and three sisters; Mrs. ?J B. Riggan of Lamesa, Mrs. H. T Jones of Los Angeles and Mrs J. K. Line of Burbank, Calif. French to Delay Asking U.S. Aid WASHINGTON W-French dipto- iats said today France will delay asking U.S. intervention in the ndochina war so long as cease- ire talks continue at Geneva. Rep. Javits leaving pen the question of American in- ervention. said he is convinced lat vigorous and swift action ould save Southeast Asia. Javits is a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, which esterday heard Adm. Arthur W. tadford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, outline the Asian military situation in a three-hour ecret briefing. No Comments Committee members were reluc- ant to discuss Radford's testi- mony. Some said it encouraged hem. Javits declined also to comment on the meeting but said he was 'convinced that an American for- eign policy of initiative and vigor, 3ased on a regional organization, can save Southeast Asia and South Asia (India and He added, in an interview, "We have got to get on our horse and do it." Britain was reported to have proposed that prospective military talks on Southeast Asia among the Western Big Three, Aus tralia and New Zealand should be held at the highest military level- that is, among the chiefs of staf the, flv.e. countnes-.. "Military 'representatives of Brit ain, France, the United States ano the two southwest Pacific flatidn are expected to meet here within the next two weeks. What they can accomplish in the absence of over all political decisions, however, unclear. Obviously' they can dis cuss forces available for taking action if their governments decide Key in U.S. AM One key to such a decision, per haps now the most important one is a .proposition from the Frenc] government for U.S. intervention The American government has told the French governments in talks at Paris that such a proposal would be as a basis fo future American decisions, bearing in mind that this country wout act only as one member of a coalition. Secretary of State Dulles tolc BARRED FROM STAND Man Fined For Kicking Policeman Striking an officer and damag ng a police auto has brought n fines for Cecil Tilley. 41, o Victoria St. Judge A.. K. Doss levied the fines Wednesday afternoon in City Court Tilley was fined 525 for drunk enness. S25 for assault and 'bat .ery on a policeman and foi destruction of city property: He remained in jail early Thurs day. awaiting payment of the Tilley was arrested at p.m. 1 Tuesday at a pool hall, South Sec- ond and Chestnut Sts. His arrest report stated he was in the pool drunk and causing a disturb- ance. When Policeman C. Q. Billings :ried to arrest him, Tilley is al- leged to have struck the officer. As Billings was putting the de- fendant in a police car, Tilley al- legedly kicked hini in the groin. Roy Tedford, a-bystander, went to Billings' assistance. After getting in the car. Tilley is alleged 'to'' have grabbed the radio yanking the wires id two. The radio was put out of service.' Judge Doss 'I could send you over to the you might be fined as ir.ach as and receive a jail sentence said. "You have no more right to strike an officer of the law than to hit Ex-Husband Tries To Talk at Trial the President States." Special to The Reporter-News MONAHANS, May 27 di- vorced husband of the late Mrs. Rebecca Estes Gray tried to take the witness stand Thursday in a suit contesting her will- But, District Judge G. C. Olsen upheld objections 'raised by at- torneys for 'administrators of the estate and the four Methodist in- stitutions which benefit fr'onrthe will and Gray was not allowed ;to testify- Gray, now a Greenville school- teacher, and his former wife were divorced in 1946. He said he had not seen her since. The main issue in the case is whether Mrs. Gray was of sound mind when she. made her will in 1951: The judge ruled that her for- mer husband would not be quali- fied to testify on that point since it had been so long since he saw ler. Six other persons were put on the' stand during the busy, morn- ng by the kinsmen seeking to break the will. Bulk of the etates goes to four Methodist institutions, including McMurry College of Abi- lene; The suit is now in its fourth day, the-third day which con- testants have'introduced their tes- timony. Mrs. Douglas Richardson of Col orado-City was the first witness to take the stand Thursday. She is the daughter of Mrs. RutK Prich ett of Colorado City, a cousin o! Mrs. Gray and a contestant. Mrs Prichett was awarded in a codicil to the' will added by Mrs Gray in August of 1952. Mrs. Graj died Sept. H, 1952. of the United Mrs. Richardson told' of unusua actions of Mri. Gray, during visit! n the Prichett home, saying tha he complained of dizzy spells an during canasta games twice re peated errors. She-quoted Mrs. Gray as sa> ing she "wanted to get a few ol preachers off her neck." On cross-examination Mr Richardson admitted Mrs. Gra often won in canasta and, despil ler unusual actions, they neve called a physician to examine Mr fray. Testimony of V: W. Owens, Mon- ahans jeweler, was stricken from :he records after he had told of See TRIAL, ff. 8-A, Col. 1 news conference -Tuesday that no uch bid had yet come- from the Yench. French diplomats here say bid is to be expected until vents at Geneva take a decisive urn one way or another. Their stimate, like that of officials'. at aris, is that a showdown with Communists 'in' the' Geneva egotiations may -be counted on ivithin the next 10 days. American authorities evidently ope that the situation 'may be esolved that, quickly. ROYMi.COHN takes credit SHOWERS POSSIBLE 2nd Squall Line May Strike Area Another squall line might move through the Abilene area Thurs- day night, the U. S." Weather Bu- reau' at Municipal Airport re- ported .Thursday noon. The turbulent line could form after 7 p. m., but likely won't be as severe as the one which tra- veled through late Wednesday said. A tornado warning was forecast for Wednesday night, but none had been received for Thursday night at of. noon, the weatherman said 'V "The sanie conditions as yester- day air and the weatherman said. The-forecast called for scattered afternoon and evening thunder- showers Thursday and Friday in this area. Weathermen at Kansas City, Mo., issued a tornado warning for the Abilene area late Wednesday. The affected area was a.30-mile belt running from 40 miles west of .Abilene to Fort Worth. "We don't put out tornado warn- ings the weatherman said. 'We just relay warnings from storm warning centers." The squall line ran north and south' and moved eastward about 20 miles an hour, Abilene weath- ermen noticed it on radar about 5 p. m. Wednesday, when it was 130-130 miles to the west. Hardest hit points apparently were Bronte and.Winters. Heavy hail was reported at Bronte, where winds unroofed the home of C. A. BeU in'the southwest part of town. Hail broke many Bronte windows. At Winters, residents fled to storm cellars when: the storm ar- rived. Mrs: B. B. Bedford, with about 55 other people, peeked at the storm from inside a cellar. Five volunteer firemen in the cellar were forced to leave when a fire alarm sounded in the midst of the storm. "It took three, men to hold the cellar door open'for, she said. She added: "About9 p.' m. the Horizon was black. On the horizon I cloud that looked like a boot northwest of here. I'm no saying it was a funnel, but it was an irregular shaped Rainfall was' scattered1 over th storm area. Totals.follow: Weinert, .85; sb miles'east of Weinert, 3.00; su miles west of Weinert, 2.00-3.00 Haskell, 1.55; Stamford, .19; fiv miles southeast of Winters, .80 south of Winters, .hard rains wit] water' across 'highways; Pain Creek, .09; 1.00. THE WEATHER ABILENE AND VICINITY Parti cloady-wilh scattered afternoon and even ing ttuindershowers Thursday and Friday high Thursday near 85; low Thursda lignt near 60: high Friday near 85. NORTH CENTRAL TEXAS Mostly cloudy and. mild, showers and local'Uu_ derstorms this afternoon and early tonlgh Friday.' pirtly ctoudy. scattered 'show mostly-in eait .portion. WEST -TEXAS Partly cloudy w focal thunderstorms in extreme east po tioc this afternoon and early tonigh Friday, partly cloudy, no important tern peraturc changes. SOUTH CENTRAL TEXAS Most cloudy and mild, widely scattered thunder showers this afternoon and early tonlgh Friday, partly cloudy, widely scattered showers, mostly in north portion. Modera southeast and south winds on the coast. TEMPERATURES Wed. P.M. Tmirs B4............ ........64 66 Sunset.last night p.m. Sunrise t day a.m. Sunset tonight p.m. Barometer reading at p.m. 27.93. Relative humidity at p.m. 56 cent, Maximum .temperature for the 24 hour ended at a.m.: 83. Minimum temperature far the 24 hour ended at a.m.: 63. Takes Credit For Staff's Ouster Move WASHINGTON UV-Roy M. Cohn wore today Secretary Stevens and rmy counselor John' G. Adams Tied to block the McCarthy sub- oramUtee's probe for Communists n the Army, and quoted Adams saving it would be feather n his cap" if no hearings were eld. Under oalh, the 27-year-old chief ide to Sen. McCarthy also said t was as the McCarthy amp alleges, that the Army offi- ials tried to "discredit" the sub- ommittee. 'Feather in Colin said thai soon after Adams .vas employed as Army counselor ast Oct.' 1 Adams told him it would be a "feather in his cap" and would "solidify his job" if he could persuade the subcommittee not to hold either public or execu- tive hearings on alleged subver- sion at Ft. Monmouth, N.J. He said Adams made no direct request that the subcommittee drop its investigation but made it very clear it'would be "welcome news" if; the subcommittee would turn the inquiry over to' the Army tself. Cohn said he did not favor do- ing this, partly because a "thor- oughly alarming" security situa- tion at secret radar laboratories at Monmouth had existed for a long tune and the Army had done nothing about it despite repeated FBI. warnings over a period of years.' Cohn related that at a luncheon in New York Oct. 13 both Steens and Adams raised the question of "whether or not we hauVto have and asked there. wasn't, to stop the'hear- ings and let them "do th'ls them- selves." Stevens and Adams both insisted when they were witnesses earlier in the McCarthy-Army hearings that they never tried to halt the senator's investigation. Stevens 'said he was concerned about the "type" of hearings and what he termed the way the Army was being "hammered." He said he felt an unfair picture of the situation was being given by the McCarthy subcommittee; Cohn was asked whether Ste'vens and Adams complained at the luncheon about distortion facts. Takes Credit They didn't, Cohen replied. Earlier, Cohn had'claimed full credit for the McCarthy subcom- mittee for suspension of 35 sus- pected security risks at the a claim previously denied by Adams and Stevens, "who insisted the subcommittee supplied only mi- nor information which the Army didn't already have. Cohn testified it looked to nun like the'situalion at Monmouth was such that action was being taken only because of the subcommittee See COHN, Pg. 8-A, Col. 1-Z USE WANT ADS FOR QUICK RESULTS Moss circulation coverage of readers in Taylor and 14 surrounding .counties prac- tically guarantees results when you turn to Want Ads to rent, hire, buy, sell, exchange, etc." It's really that simple for to obtain quick results with Want Ads at a cost os low os 41c per day. Where else con you buy such coverage of such' a low price? And it's so sjpiple to place .a Simply dial 2-7841 and let an experienced'Want Ad writer help you. If you live out of Abilene simply moil it in.. -Want Ad market is the world's greatest. You're losing money if you're not letting .Want Ads work for you! Want Ad closing time is 4 P.M. weekdays, and noon Sat- urday for Sunday, publication. Friday noon is closing timt for alt Sunday space ads. U.S.Searching Panama Canal Ships for Arms PANAMA increased in jittery Central America today as U.S. customs inspectors at the Atlantic mouth of the Panama Canal ransacked the cargo of a French for contraband arms. An agent of the French Line at Cristobal said a search of its ton freighter Wyoming began last night "in connection with the busi- ness in Guatemala." He obviously referred to U.S. charges that left- ist Guatemala recently received a large arms shipment from behind the Iron Curtain. Guatemala is one of the .Wyoming's ports of call. The agent declared, however, "There are no arms or contraband aboard." He said the ship-carried only general cargo. The Wyoming had been due to clear through the canal today en El Salvador. Guatemala, Los Angeles, San-Francisco and Vancouver, B.C. But officials in- dicaterf she'would not be ready to leave on schedule. U.S. State Department officials in WMhtBgton thi ship wu being searched to determine .wheth- er customs regulations have been, violated..The officials'stressed that no. suspicion had arisen with respect to the French, Line itself. They, said both the line and the French government were cooper- ating in the inspection. This left the question whether the manifest might have been falsified. The State Department announce- ment, said: "The ship's manifest reflects a miscellaneous comprised principally of machinery. "Included are five boxes of sport- ing arms, but it is understood 'that no question is being raised about these." One Washington source said, authorities had re- ceived 'information indicating there might be more than five boxes of "sporting arms" aboard.' 'Reports reached Washington late last, week that two more shipments of Red arms were en route to Guatemala. The Red-tinged Cen- tral American nation allegedly had already received a lO-million-doltar cargo from the Polish port of Stettin. State Department officials ac- knowledged, in view of such re- ports, U.S. customs authorities were "keeping their eyes open." Elsewhere along the Central American cold war front: Reports from Guatemala said a mystery plane swooped over that' Caribbean republic last night and scattered pamphlets which called Guatemalans to fight "Commu- nist'oppression." From neighboring Honduras came word that several planes fed arrived with arms that coun- try under, terms .of the.-US., de- fense agreements. -The United States is rushing military equip- ment to both Honduras and Nicara- gua. The U. S. Air Force anuoaaced in Washington. that three of its big intercontinental B3C bombers will make a demonstratbn fflfht over Nicaragua Joday at the re- quest of. tht Nicaragua ment. ;