Current Issue

Results of Call for Donations to General Fund

Funding effort to continue 

Members responded to last month’s call for donations with a total of approximately $ 1,000.00, half of which came from a single anonymous member’s $ 500 match. Those gifts, combined with funds received from VFW National for Life Member dues and a few other gifts has kept the Post general fund afloat for the moment. 

We are continuing our funding drive by preparing a mailing to the members honoring their service in foreign wars, and asking for a donation to our general fund. It also asks members to update their demographics. The mailing includes a stamped return envelope to Post 8870. Please give this your attention when it arrives. 

We have rearranged our donation page on the web site to make it easier to choose between donating to the general fund, the Poppy (Relief) fund or to the Edmonds Veterans Plaza. Donations can be made by credit card at https://vfw8870.org/. The “donate” button is right there on the landing page. You will receive a prompt email receipt. 

You might also consider a regular small donation on your credit card, (add it to your monthly bill list). Every little bit helps and remember, we are not permitted to use funds generated by our semi-annual poppy drives for Post operations. 

POW Trivia: Skunk Works or “Something smells here”

POW Trivia: Skunk Works or Something smells here

by Carl Kurfess 

The term “Skunk Works” came from Al Capp’s satirical, hillbilly comic strip Li’l Abner, which was immensely popular in the 1940s and ’50s. The “Skonk Works” was a dilapidated factory located on the remote outskirts of Dogpatch, in the backwoods of Kentucky. According to the strip, scores of locals were done in yearly by the toxic fumes of the concentrated “skonk oil”, which was brewed and barreled daily by “Big Barnsmell” (known as the lonely “inside man” at the Skonk Works), by grinding dead skunks and worn shoes into a smoldering still, for some mysterious, unspecified purpose. 

Originally, the “Skunk works” was a Lockheed research-and-development operation where the SR-71 and U-2 spy planes were developed. The original Lockheed facility, during the development of the P-80 Shooting Star, was located adjacent to a malodorous plastics factory. According to a memoir, an engineer jokingly showed up to work one day wearing a Civil Defense gas mask. To comment on the smell and the secrecy the project entailed, another engineer, referred to the facility as “Skonk Works”. As the development was very secret, the employees were told to be careful even with how they answered phone calls. One day, when the Department of the Navy was trying to reach the Lockheed management for the P-80 project, the call was accidentally transferred to an engineer’s desk, who answered the phone in his trademark fashion of the time, by picking up the phone and stating “Skonk Works, inside man here”. “What?” replied the voice at the other end. “Skonk Works”, the engineer repeated. The name stuck.