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Observation Squadron Sixty Seven

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Observation Squadron Sixty Seven
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Handstands in Heaven

Dedicated to Bob Woldt who was John Hartzheim's best friend back in Wisconsin.

Recently, I received a call from Bob saying, “Steve, I’m in bad shape. It doesn’t look good. One good thing though, it looks like I’m going to see John again.” John was Bob’s best friend back in their youth. Bob was a year ahead of John in school. Bob knew he was going to be drafted, so he went down to the Post Office to enlist. The only service there at the time was the Navy, so Bob enlisted with them. A year later, John also enlisted in the Navy. They ran into each other on leave once, back home in Kaukauna, Wisconsin. John had a crazy idea of doing handstands in the street intersection. So, Bob and John did just that. At the end of the evening they shook hands and said something like, “We’ll see each other when we get back.”

Bob made it home OK, but John was killed in action when the plane he was flying in was shot down over Laos. For several years, John was listed as Missing in Action. His remains were eventually found and returned home. Now I’m sure that both Bob and John are catching up on things, like throwing out a line into the lake, eyeing in on that big buck and doing handstands in heaven.

Steve Conto
The Final Bridge
Menasha, WI