Jim Stark Blog

First and Last 164-mile Marathon

I was 47-years-old in 1985 and had become obsessed with running. I was getting up at 4 a.m. each day, running 50-60 miles every week, and had completed nine marathons, including the famous Boston Marathon. My middle son, Chris, was a sophomore in high school and on the track and cross-country team. We frequently ran […]

Mutiny on the Houston Ship Channel

The Intercontinental Terminals Company (ITC) is located on the banks of the Houston Ship Channel in the town of Deer Park outside of Houston, Texas. It has 242 storage tanks with the capacity to hold 13.1 million barrels of petrochemical liquids and gases, as well as fuel oil, bunker oil, and distillates. On March 19, […]

The Palomares B-52 Crash

On January 17, 1966, a B-52 of the Strategic Air Command flying a Cold War mission called Operation Chrome Dome collided with a KC-135 refueling aircraft. The B-52 was carrying four hydrogen bombs. All four of the KC-135 crew members plus three of the seven on the bomber were killed. Three of the H-bombs landed […]

My Friend Nathaniel

I had volunteered in the library’s VITAL program (Volunteers In Tutoring Adult Learners). I held no altruistic motivations for this project. It would only be an hour each week and I thought it might be interesting. The assignment of “learners” was random. Your student might be a foreigner wanting to read English, or a school […]

Good Evening, Ladies and Gentlemen…

A couple years ago when invited to speak to a military officer’s association (MOAA) in Florida about my Navy flying experiences, an attractive lady (about my age) had been introduced before the meeting as the widow of an Air Force General. She was sitting in the front row during my presentation and I could see […]