“I almost got sick,” said Col. Ross, 56. “He ruined by life.”
All the horror and pain came rushing back when he read The Washington Times story about NavyCapt. Timothy W. Dorsey’s pending promotion to flag rank. The Pentagon sent his nomination to the Senate Armed Services Committee this month.
“Nothing like cheating,” Capt. Ross recalled thinking after getting back to his squadron at Aviano Air Base, Italy. “This is supposed to be an exercise. You’re supposed to come find me - not sit on my tanker and then chase me for 15 minutes and then shoot me down.”
As Capt. Ross approached the aircraft carrier USS Saratoga, Lt. Dorsey literally obeyed a radio command to fire, even though the exercise was planned to be purely simulated. He launched a Sidewinder missile, blowing the RF-4C out of the sky.
A Navy investigation found that Lt. Dorsey knew the RF-4C was friendly, saying his decision to fire was “deliberate” and “illogical.” The Navy banned him from flying, a punishment that at the time would seem to have ended the career of the Navy admiral’s son.
Capt. Ross and his back-seat weapons officer ejected just before the fireball would have killed them.
First the canopy flew off, subjecting Capt. Ross to a strong gravitational force that pushed up his body and exposed his head to a 500-knot wind. The rocket-powered ejection seat slammed beneath him, thrusting him from the cockpit.
The subsequent whiplash took a slow, excruciating toll.
Over the years, his spine degenerated, requiring painkillers and multiple surgeries. The ejection also dislocated his shoulders, broke his left hand and his left knee, and damaged an ankle.
But his degenerating spine worsened. He had his first major back surgery in 1992. Six more would follow as surgeons installed screws, plates and rods to keep a cracked and fragile spine functional.View Entire Story
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
By Andrew P. Napolitano
The president's men trash the Constitution to pursue antagonists
Independent voices from the TWT Communities
A collection of reader guest articles, thoughts and opinions by Communities writers and breaking news and information.
News and opinion from a Millennial Urbanite with Southern sensibilities,
Covering the world of soccer, including the World Cup, Major League Soccer, D.C. United and the English Premier League and other interesting sporting events.
Benghazi: The anatomy of a scandal
Vietnam Memorial adds four names
Cinco de Mayo on the Mall
NRA kicks off annual convention