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June 22, 2007

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George And The Kopek

There are a lot of people I wish were still around, and right at the top of the list is the South Carolina knifemaker George Herron. George was not only a genius with his hands, he was one of the most generous men I have ever known. I have no idea how many beginning knifemakers he coached, or how many thousands of hours he spent teaching them the art, but it was enough to found a whole school of knifemaking—the South Carolina school. And none of it was for money. He did it because he was glad to do it.

He was also a war hero. I knew him 20 years before he even began to talk about it, and even then it was not much. Once we were looking at a huge old tree that a hurricane had uprooted, and he started talking about artillery barrages, and how in a few seconds they could change everything, and I’m sure he was seeing in his mind’s eye something he would much rather not have seen.

After the Korean War, he worked for a government agency whose job was finding out stuff. He mentioned that he worked for them in India, and had occasion to kill a king cobra with a hand grenade. But my favorite story was about the time in Germany when he was ordered to crawl through the no man’s land between East and West Germany, into a tank park, and take photos of the interior of a new Russian tank.

George took his Minox camera, and made his way through the barbed wire and minefields, got into the tank park, into the tank, and took his photos. Just as he was ready to leave, he noticed a Russian coin—a kopek—lying on the floor. On a whim, he stuck it in his pocket and, in its place, he left a quarter.

Then he crept back to the Western side, a smile of pure mischief on his face.

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Comments

Concerned_Soldier

Awesome,
Thanks for sharing Dave,

It is kind of funny what just about any weapon even artillery can do in a blink of an eye!

Keep up the good work!

Any word on Taking over for COL Cooper and giving all of us your $.02 on everything? I think you would be good at it. America needs a veteran to tell us how it is!

Keep up the good work!!

V/R

C_S

Lone

That has got to be one of the best stories I have ever heard...I can't quit laughing. :-)

Lone

Dumba**

Dave: After I read your post I clicked on George Herron's name and the first thing I saw was the line: "This knife sold for $795." My initial thought was "What moron would pay $795 for a knife?" Then I scrolled down and saw that example of Mr. Herron's work. My second thought was "I would." I sure hope you were lucky enough to acquire at least one of his knives before he passed on.

Dr. Ralph

A man with a mind and a pair of hands. After perusing the web for George Herron knives thinking like a fool I could actually purchase one I have noticed they are all "sold out". That says it all. Wonder what the krauts thought when they saw that quarter? Little things like that make life worth living...

Her former little cottage is replaced with a very beautiful painted house and a colorful latrine. She has about a dozen of half-naked Greek shepherd boys and more than a dozen of goats.

A colourful latrine is quite the cat's meow, eh? Reminds me of the Great War. My unit, Royal Fusiliers, had the most colourful latrines on the entire Western Front. We had pool tables and phonographs in most of them, and usually several French country girls. We regular tommys would boff the French milkmaids while they talked dirty to our officers on the field telephones. Oh, it was a splendid time, I tell you. Splendid!

Buddy Hinton

I little doubt you thought so at the time. Those French tarts were damned, of course, and I put them in your way on purpose. Yes, they were damned; as damned as you now find yourself! You had best endeavor to enjoy your damnation, for I'll warrant you'll find it surpassing durable...
Ta ta for now, Gentle Spirits!

I will be going into a convent as soon as they let me out of here. I will be scourging my flesh and rubbing ashes and grit into my eyes, hair, and naughtybits. If any of you come near me, I will shout Scripture at you. You have been warned!

Buddy Hinton

We do not require Hitler's patio or Churchill's undertaker's old barge. WE REQUIRE HITLER'S SKULL. WE, THE DETERMINED YOUNG SOLDIERS OF NSDAP YOUTH KADET KORPS, DEMAND RELEASE OF HITLER SKULL BY DIRTY DEGENERATE COMMUNIST JEW, PUTIN! WHEN WE RECOVER FUHRER HITLER'S HEAD, WE MAKE CLONE BABY FROM GENUINE FUHRER GENETIC TRACES!!!!!! SEIG HEIL!

NEW HITLER BABY WILL POWER ONTO AMERICAN IDOL TO BLOW OTHER SILLY DEGENERATE CONTESTANT OFF ISLAND TO GRAUB ROCK-HARD ABS AND SECURE FREE RIDES TO HOT HOT SUPERSEXY RIO BEACHES WHILE RAKING IN BIG CASHFLOW FROM SUPERMEGAHOT REAL ESTATE FLIPS WITH NO CREDIT AND NO MONEY DOWN!!!! HURRY! HOT! WOW! ACT NOW! SEIG HEIL! SEIG HEIL! WOW! ACT NOW TO SMASH ZIONIST BELLYFAT HEGEMONY AND GRAUB ONTO THE SUPERMEGASEXY VEGAS-STYLE ROCK HARD ABS YOU KNOW YOU'VE ALWAYS DESERVED!!! HOT! SEIG HEIL! HUZZAH!

If you believe the story about crawling into East Germany, you must own quite a few bridges in Brooklyn.

John T

I'm a retired USAF Msgt, my brother a two-tour Vietnam 5th Group SF Captain, a friend a career SF full Colonel, and we all own George Herron knives. We all use them regularly. They've cleaned a lot of deer and cut plenty of steaks. The things never get dull, and after a dozen years still have not seen a whetstone.

JP

great story dave

JP

great story dave

Jim Strawn

Dave: I attended the Southeastern Wildlife expo for a number of years and George's booth was the first place I went on opening day. I paid extra to get in with the early birds. I agree with you that he was a most kind person with a very gracious wife. Being a retired Marine we had a lot of interesting conversations (he was with the USMC at Chosin) but I hadn't heard about the kopek. I was lucky enough to buy several of his beautiful knives. Thanks for sharing.

Jim Strawn

Dave: I attended the Southeastern Wildlife expo for a number of years and George's booth was the first place I went on opening day. I paid extra to get in with the early birds. I agree with you that he was a most kind person with a very gracious wife. Being a retired Marine we had a lot of interesting conversations (he was with the USMC at Chosin) but I hadn't heard about the kopek. I was lucky enough to buy several of his beautiful knives. Thanks for sharing.

Jim Strawn

Dave: I attended the Southeastern Wildlife expo for a number of years and George's booth was the first place I went on opening day. I paid extra to get in with the early birds. I agree with you that he was a most kind person with a very gracious wife. Being a retired Marine we had a lot of interesting conversations (he was with the USMC at Chosin) but I hadn't heard about the kopek. I was lucky enough to buy several of his beautiful knives. Thanks for sharing.




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