Vet still gets 100th birthday party at AF Museum despite Govt shutdown

Published: Friday, January 19, 2018 @ 4:33 PM
Updated: Monday, January 22, 2018 @ 4:44 PM

Government shutdown threatens 100th birthday party for Springfield veteran

UPDATE @ 4:32 p.m. (Jan. 22)

A government shutdown this weekend made for a shorter-than-planned birthday party for a World War II veteran at the Air Force Museum on Wright Patterson’s base.

On Tuesday, Thomas Eubanks of Springfield turns 100.

His family planned a surprise for him over the weekend at the museum. Eubanks arrived for the noon party, and the family was alerted they only had until 1 p.m., due to the government shutdown, said grandson Kevin Black. 

“The Museum was very accommodating considering what they were up against,” Black said. 

Black said his grandfather, a tail gunner in WWII, was surprised by the 100th birthday party. They were able to get a photo in front of the tail gunner position of the B-17 on display at the Air Force Museum.

World War II Veteran Thomas Eubanks, of Springfield, (seated) with his four children, from left, David Eubanks, Cathy Ferguson, Steve Eubanks and Sandi Black. Contributed

World War II veteran Thomas Eubanks, on right, in front of the tail gunner position of the B-17 on display at the U.S. Air Force Museum. That is the position he flew in in WWII. Eubanks turns 100 on Jan. 23. Contributed

EARLIER REPORT

Kevin Black hadn’t thought about how the possibility of a government shutdown would affect his family.

World War II veteran Thomas Eubanks of Springfield turns 100 on Jan. 23. To celebrate, his grandson, Black, organized a birthday party for him at the Air Force Museum on Saturday.

With the possibility of the government shutting down tonight, the museum may not open, and the outlook of the party is up in the air.

“I don’t like the playing politics on this,” Black said. “They’re just playing games.”

RELATED: With no deal on shutdown, GOP accuses Sherrod Brown of flip-flop

The possible museum closure hadn’t occurred to Black or his family until this news organization contacted him about the party, which he had asked us to cover.

His family wasn’t the only ones uncertain of what will happen next.

Diana Bachert, spokeswoman for the Air Force Museum, said Friday night in a statement there is currently no order for the museum to shut down.

World War II Veteran Thomas Eubanks, of Springfield, turns 100 on Jan. 23. Contributed

“However, we will follow procedures for an orderly shutdown when and how we are directed to do so,” Bachert said.

If Congress fails to come to an agreement on a continuing resolution (CR), a bill that appropriates money to different federal departments and programs, some federal agencies could come to a standstill.

MORE: What if UD and Wright State played this year in a Gem City Jam?

Black’s plan is for Congressman Warren Davidson to present Eubanks with a certificate, then Black will present his grandfather with letters from President Donald Trump and Gov. John Kasich.

But if there is no CR passed, Congress plans to stay in Washington and try to come to an agreement, meaning Davidson may have to miss the party.

Black said his grandfather doesn’t know about the planned celebration at the museum.

“He just thinks that a bunch of the grandkids are taking him to the museum,” Black said.

And he probably will continue to keep plans a secret, in case the museum isn’t open.

“(Eubanks) was sick a couple weeks after Christmas, and we didn’t think he was going to be able to go (to the museum). But he wants to go if they don’t shut down,” Black said.

MORE: What if a government shutdown happened? Five things to know

Eubanks is a widower; his wife Suzanne died in 2000. They were married for 59 years.

In WWII he served as tail gunner in the European theatre, an area of heavy fighting across the continent. He flew 13 combat missions from Knettishall Airfield in England.

“Tail gunner was the worst place to be,” said Black, who is retired from the Air Force.

He worked as a building inspector for Springfield for several years.

He lives in Oakwood Village Retirement Home in Springfield. He has four children, nine grandchildren, 22 great-grandchildren and four great, great-grandchildren.

“He’s got all his wits about him,” Black said.

Trending - Most Read Stories

Huber Heights gas leak causes business evacuations

Published: Thursday, February 22, 2018 @ 11:11 AM
Updated: Thursday, February 22, 2018 @ 11:32 AM

Repairs continue after Huber Heights gas leak causes business evacuations

Executive Boulevard lanes in Huber Heights reopened after being closed for several hours following a gas leak Thursday morning.

‘SHS’ school threat believed to have originated in Springfield, police chief says

Crews continued to make repairs to the leaking gas line that evacuated fifteen business along the road around 11 a.m., according to Huber Heights Fire Chief Mark Ashworth.

Ashworth said a construction crew working in the area struck a 6-inch gas main directly under Executive, which  caused the gas to leak from underground.

Huber Heights gas leak


Executive is one of the city’s most commercial areas and Ashworth said the leak would impact the businesses in the area.

Utility companies, including DP&L and Vectren, worked on scene to isolate their utilities as well.

Trending - Most Read Stories

Arrest made in attempted robbery at Table 33 restaurant in downtown Dayton

Published: Thursday, February 22, 2018 @ 5:24 PM

Dayton police arrested a man who attempted to rob a bartender at Table 33 Restaurant in downtown Dayton. STAFF PHOTO/Jarod Thrush
Dayton police arrested a man who attempted to rob a bartender at Table 33 Restaurant in downtown Dayton. STAFF PHOTO/Jarod Thrush

Dayton police arrested an 18-year-old man after a failed robbery attempt at Table 33 restaurant in downtown Dayton.

LOCAL: Family member arrested for alleged arson in Dayton house fire

According to a Dayton Police report, just after 5 p.m. Thursday, a man in camo pants and a red shirt grabbed a female bartender by the arm and ordered her twice to open the cash register.

The woman refused both demands and the man ran away.

A Dayton officer spotted the suspect a short time later on Salem Ave.

The officer gave chase and arrested the man a mile and a half away from the restaurant near the 700-block of Salem Ave.  He was arrested and taken to the Montgomery County jail.

No weapon was used in the robbery attempt and no one was hurt.

Trending - Most Read Stories

Sophomore removed from Dixie HS following concerning messages about school shooting

Published: Thursday, February 22, 2018 @ 1:28 PM
Updated: Thursday, February 22, 2018 @ 1:55 PM

Local authorities taking school threats seriously

UPDATE @ 1:55 p.m.

A male sophomore at Dixie High School is facing charges after posting concerning statements on social media directed towards staff and students at the school, according to New Lebanon police Capt. Jim Chambers. 

LOCAL NEWS: Springfield High School female student arrested in ‘S.H.S’ threats case

School administrators contacted police around 9:30 a.m. Thursday after students alerted teachers of the messages posted to social media, Chambers said. The suspect was arrested and has been booked into the Montgomery County Juvenile Justice Center on a charge of inducing panic. 

RELATED: 2 middle school students arrested for making threats to Fairborn High School

“With the events in Florida, this obviously concerns our agency,” Chambers said. “We owe it to the public to keep them safe.” 

“We’re going to work with folks at the juvenile justice center and the prosecutor’s office to find a resolution to this matter, hopefully one that fixes the problem,” Chambers said. 

FIRST REPORT

A Dixie High School sophomore was taken into custody Thursday after administrators said the student posted concerning messages on social media regarding a school shooting.

New Lebanon Local Schools Superintendent Greg Williams said other students made administrators aware of the social media post around 9:30 a.m., shortly after the post was made.

According to Williams, police were called to the school and the student was removed from the building by New Lebanon Police.  We’ve contacted police to see if the student was ultimately arrested and if the student will be facing any charges.

Williams added that the social media post was not a specific threat of a shooting at Dixie, but the message warranted action by the school.

The district is planning a one-call message to parents informing them of the incident.

Trending - Most Read Stories

Family member arrested for alleged arson in Dayton house fire

Published: Thursday, February 22, 2018 @ 11:09 AM

Family member arrested for alleged arson in Dayton house fire

 Dayton police arrested a man Thursday afternoon in connection with a fire just hours after city firefighters rescued people from the second floor and roof of the burning house.

Two people, a man and a woman, were taken to the hospital — with one of them reportedly suffering from life-threatening injuries.

Pets, people rescued from Terry Street fire

James Dennis, 23, of Dayton was arrested on suspicion of aggravated arson after the fire at 29 S. Terry St., according to a police report.

The victims and the suspect are relatives, firefighters said. 

Auto dealer found shot to death was Vietnam vet

The investigation is now a joint effort by the Dayton Fire and Police departments, said Sgt. Michael Godsey of the Dayton police homicide squad, which was later called to the address following the fire first reported about 11 a.m.

Flames hit home on Terry street
MARSHALL GORBY/ STAFF

Trending - Most Read Stories