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(edited)

Well, it's no surprise to me that Paul Soderlind at NWA signed that analysis report. You can read all about him at THIS ARTICLE BY AV WEB. (although whoever edited forgot how to use the space bar lol) He was some kind of Navy pilot instructor during WW2 and joined NWA after the war. He rose to become their most respected employee ever, and ended up as Flight Ops director. When the Cooper hijacking occurred, he immediately got in communication with Seattle and started working right away to figure out not only where Cooper wanted to go, but where he might jump. If Soderlind says Cooper jumped here, or jumped there, and you should look either HERE or THERE...I would take his word on it. I smart-erased a portion of the picture near his arm because it had an annoying 'flaw' on it. But you get the general idea. Sometimes he wore a mustache, sometimes he didn't. 

Paul2.jpg.e41b2957494ebf44fd707bda49a25fec.jpg

Side Note: Contact Form apps for next year's Cooper Party continue to trickle in each day, a few at a time. Not that many, but on a steady basis. This surprises me a bit because the event is more than six months down the road. However, Greg and I are convinced that we won't have any trouble filling the available slots. Our main concern will be logistics. Yesterday I updated the page pretty heavily to what I consider more or less the final version. 

I also understand that almost no one in Cooperland will want to, or be ABLE to attend. Most of you live far from western Washington. Bruce is the closest to us, but I'm 99% sure he hates us and would never apply to go. We do have a couple of Cooperites who are interested, and I plan to invite a couple of special guests when it gets closer to the date. But for the most part, I expect most of the attendees will be 'regular folks' from between Portland and Seattle. Perhaps a few from the Ariel area. This works fine for us. And if anyone changes their mind later, feel free to let me know. Just don't decide like in May or something. By that time, we will probably be full up with more people then we can actually accommodate. 

I got a message yesterday from a guy in the Olympia area saying he thought our Covid 19 vaccine requirement was 'unfair'. I told him it was policy, and for him not to be surprised if employers started requiring the same thing after the vaccine is available. Sort of like a drug test, if you will. He came back with a reply saying he still wanted to go and he would get the vaccine if we wanted. My last message was to say it should be something HE wanted, not me.  

Figuring that we will easily fill the 75 allowed slots for the campout, and leaving room for maybe another 50 or so doing dispersed camping nearby...and that is extremely likely a vaccine will be in common distribution prior to June 4th, this is a requirement I will absolutely adhere to. Anyone who gets the PDF a month or so prior to the party will only get that if they have already proven to our satisfaction that they have the vaccine (both doses), or can prove that to AB staff when they show up to the Rally Point. 

Now I know some folks are going to come down on me for this policy. But nobody here at AB wants anyone attending to get sick. Everybody's already seen enough irresponsible events already, and AB isn't having any of that. No excuses will be accepted. If you show up and haven't proven, or CAN prove you've gotten the vaccine series...you will be turned away without mercy. My answer to the detractors of that idea is, "Okay. So stay home." Sounds harsh, but I think it's fair to everyone else. 

I guess this is one of the reasons we decided to start organizing this party six or seven months in advance. Because of the Covid situation, it will take much time to put it all together...plus we have to keep hoping on a vaccine finally becoming available to everyone. 

Edited by RobertMBlevins

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10 hours ago, Robert99 said:

I believe that there is another copy of this picture, maybe on Shutter's site, that identifies all of the people in that photograph.  And there is another photo somewhere that shows Sunderland in the left pilot's seat for the sled tests.

The Captain whose name is redacted elsewhere may be one of the military shown in this photograph and may be the same parachutist that walked down to the bottom of the stairs during the sled tests.

Since there seems to be a problem with the identifications of some people in these pictures, it may be Al Lee, Chief NWA Pilot at Seattle, who is in the left seat in one of those pictures rather than Sunderland.

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4 hours ago, Robert99 said:

Since there seems to be a problem with the identifications of some people in these pictures, it may be Al Lee, Chief NWA Pilot at Seattle, who is in the left seat in one of those pictures rather than Sunderland.

For a picture of Al Lee, probably the best source to ask is Bruce Kitt at the NWA Museum. Or whoever is running the place now. 

I'm not sure if I would come out and say it relates to the Cooper hijacking. Kitt isn't too hot on that subject. NWA also has two pages at Facebook. One you can find just searching on Northwest Airlines there. The other is called The Other Red Tails. They are both group pages at Facebook. 

I voted up your comment because after 2,483 posts I figured someone should toss you a vote. You had zip until now. ^_^

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(edited)

Two photos from NWA's first flight of a Boeing 747 going overseas from Seattle to Toyko.  
Date: June 22, 1970. 
Photo Credit: NWA History Museum, their collection. 

Below: Donald Nyrop, CEO of Northwest Orient Airlines. He was the guy who agreed immediately that Cooper should be paid his money and the FBI should not interfere with that. Nyrop is standing on the LEFT. A senior exec for NWA is on the right. (Not Al Lee)  

747FFJune221970_2.jpg.4e8fb26a2ce8b82bc2d992be1beb7075.jpg

Below: Flight crew for the same flight, posing prior to leaving Seattle. Are any of the Flight 305 stewardesses in this picture? Maybe. If you want to look, it is possible to blow up this picture further. I boosted the resolution to 300 dpi on it, as well as resizing to larger size. CLICK on the picture to examine it full-size. I can't say for sure, but if any of them were on the 305 crew, I would *guess* Mucklow is third from the top, with Flo Schaffner directly below. Two other possible candidates might be the woman second from the bottom, (Schaffner) because that looks like a wig and she is the heaviest in the picture. (Schaffner struggled with weight requirements when she worked for NWA) with Mucklow possibly just behind her up the stairs. The second Mucklow candidate, I'm not sure though. I think the woman nearer the top is a more likely match for Mucklow. 

747FFJune221970_1.thumb.jpg.e4ff4331be2020a1d8f0d9db9b53726c.jpg

Edited by RobertMBlevins

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On 11/21/2020 at 9:50 PM, FLYJACK said:

Redacted name Captain Thomas Spangler.

redactednames.jpeg.66e727556c042f283ffee6b964ef861c.jpeg

Many thanks. This makes sense now.

MSgt Wally Johnson, in his interview with the WSHS, positively identified Captain Thomas Spangler as the second person from the left in the crew photo, and added that the second and third persons from the left were "pilot and co-pilot" (he did not specify who had which role).

Neither Wally Johnson nor Agent John Detlor, in their correspondence with the WSHS, could recall the name of the pilot in command, but Detlor recalled seeing the cockpit photo in which the third man from the left in the group photo (with the tan or yellow shirt) was in the left-hand seat. That person looks very much like Paul Soderlind (as in the attached image).

Finally, the man standing on the right in the crew photo, next to the air stair, is surely Harold Anderson.

So my reading of the flight crew on the sled test flight is as follows:

  • Paul Soderlind: pilot in command (LHS)
  • Captain Thomas Spangler: co-pilot or second officer (RHS)
  • Harold Anderson: flight engineer or third officer.

William Scott and William Rataczak do not appear in the crew photo and, as far as I can determine, were not on board the flight.

paul_soderlind-large.jpg

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(edited)

Well, if you go with Soderlind's analysis that the jump point was 8:11, that puts it directly over where the Amboy parachute was discovered. 'Found between Green and Bald Mountains' is what FBI agent Larry Carr said. 

After reviewing all the information over the last two pages, I still believe the flight path is accurate. And that the Amboy chute is a real possibility of being Cooper's. "It's the right size, the right color, and found in the right place," said the Seattle FBI when it was discovered. Then they say the chute will be examined by their lab, but instead of that, they dump it in Earl Cossey's driveway. He dismisses it using a false premise, saying: "It's made of silk and the one I gave Cooper was ripstop nylon." Then chute experts who see the pictures the FBI release of the chute say 'not silk'. (They pointed to a cross-hatch pattern of the fabric in blow-ups.) No one else is allowed to view the chute (other than the FBI) except Cossey. FBI admits that when they said 'outside experts were consulted,' that they meant only by TELEPHONE. The chute is suddenly dismissed. 

Five years later, they are still calling it 'evidence in an ongoing case' and they won't allow Tom Kaye and his team to examine it. They asked. They have a standing offer. All ignored. 

It doesn't take a Brainiac to figure out that a simple test with a Bic lighter would determine silk or nylon. Silk catches fire. Nylon drips and melts. No answers from the FBI on their exact criteria for dismissal. 

Probable Conclusion:  The FBI figured out at some point that the chute was probably Cooper's, and decided to keep that information under wraps for their own reasons. 

I don't know exactly where the chute was dug up, but I DO know the people who live next door to the property owners, and they saw the FBI traffic to the property. I met them at the 2012 Ariel Party and spoke to the wife. 

Edited by RobertMBlevins

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(edited)

I got an answer by email today on an inquiry I made regarding the upcoming HBO movie. I was told Dower wanted to explore the 'fringe' aspect of Cooper investigators, not so much make a hard film about the case, or try to solve it. He's known to shoot up to 24 hours of footage for a 90-minute picture.

Now I know why my time was wasted with them. I was the only one who presented the evidence in a reasonable manner. B)

Guess I was too ordinary for them. I should have known Dower would go that route. I saw his last movie, the one about Scientology. It was totally nuts. At that point, I started to wonder what he actually had in mind for Cooper. And it came to me that he was trying to make an art film for film festivals, rather than a documentary, and wanted to show how weird some people are in the Cooper Vortex. No big deal, but I'm glad I don't appear in this movie. At least I HOPE I don't. Money was good though. Bruce got shortchanged, but then we spent two full days with Dower and did a lot of driving, too. I even arranged a very nice house for filming, and rescheduled work. It's why I charged him what I did. 

I was WAY too factual and ordinary for Dower, and frankly...I'm glad they cut me from the film. If they had presented me as some kind of Cooper nut, I would have become quite pissed off about that. It could have screwed up any movie deal I had in mind. Nick R has told me personally he still wants to do the Cooper picture, and agreed I did the right thing by dumping that one production company and going with he and the large studio instead. It's true that this first studio were the initial folks who approached me back in late 2016...but it is ALSO true that they couldn't come up with a decent script. And I gave them 3 1/2 years to do so. The one they sent me was so bad I couldn't believe it. I can write better stuff, and I have. So I did a back door thing with them to extricate the rights back. Then I told Nick what I did, and he was okay with the whole thing. I will NEVER name the original studio who signed me. I might tell you why I dumped them, but there's no purpose in embarrassing them, either. 

Dower's last picture, My Scientology Movie, is already a freebie at YouTube. Not that good, but not that bad. Best part is the trailer. Dower directed, and his friend Louis Theroux was the front man. Over the years though, Theroux has done some damn good documentaries. More good than bad. Maybe he should have been the front man on the Cooper movie. 

Remember this though: ANY media on Cooper is still GOOD media, because it helps keep Cooper in the public mind. I'll take almost anything, since there is little enough of it anyway. I set my DVR to record it, just like the others. Hell, I even bought an all-region DVD player once just so I could watch a copy of the Treat Williams version of Cooper. It was only available in Europe at the time. The DVD case is printed in Hungarian, but one of the language settings is English. Later, I picked up Zardoz with Sean Connery because it was Europe-only at the time, too. Nothing like seeing Connery run around with a big revolver and dressed in shorts. Story good, wardrobe bad. It's cult sci-fi. You get it where you can. 

Edited by RobertMBlevins

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Hi All,

I'm looking at the FBI's "Unresolved Suspects" list from #52 (p189-).

Fly, can you run a list of references for me for mentions of Eugene OR? I hate to keep asking you, but you're the only one I know who has these files all digitized for word search.

Also, does anyone remember which file went into detail on Richard McCoy? I remember the FBI had interviewed someone connected to McCoy who said he was home in Provo until at least mid-morning on the day of the hijacking, but I don't have it anywhere in my notes.

Also, does anyone know when McCoy checked into his hotel in Vegas on the 25th? And what about the time stamp on the gas station receipt? 

Please and thank you.

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(edited)
1 hour ago, Andrade1812 said:

Hi All,

I'm looking at the FBI's "Unresolved Suspects" list from #52 (p189-).

Fly, can you run a list of references for me for mentions of Eugene OR? I hate to keep asking you, but you're the only one I know who has these files all digitized for word search.

Also, does anyone remember which file went into detail on Richard McCoy? I remember the FBI had interviewed someone connected to McCoy who said he was home in Provo until at least mid-morning on the day of the hijacking, but I don't have it anywhere in my notes.

Also, does anyone know when McCoy checked into his hotel in Vegas on the 25th? And what about the time stamp on the gas station receipt? 

Please and thank you.

Almost every file mentions Eugene.. hard to pin down

 

There was no timestamp on the gas receipt. The date wasn't precise because of the worker shift and change over of date for the date stamp.

The connection to the Vegas Tropicana Hotel was a collect call to McCoy's residence. They couldn't confirm it was McCoy.

 

 

McCoy part 25 p 35/36/38/39/41/98/108/164/167/232/244/301/303-305

McCoy part 27 p 302 - 357

McCoy part 42, p 395-402

McCoy part 43, p 39-54, 195, 198

McCoy part 45, p 214, 245-248

McCoy part 27 start p 302 ++

 

McCoy gas station

part 27 p 306, 307, 326, 327, 329

 

McCoy Hotel info

part 27 p 307, 331, 332

part 25 p 39/40/107/108/305

Edited by FLYJACK
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The Dower film is here,,

 

 

The FBI said they looked but couldn't find the cigarette butts,, their own doc says they destroyed them in Reno..

cigbutssdestroyed.jpeg.aefd779d66bac732b3f5f3c129daa277.jpeg

 

Here is the rear stairwell and panel from Norjak.. at Reno.

As I suspected, the placard was not from inside NORJAK..

NO OPTIONAL EMERGENCY RELEASE SYSTEM.. (pull red handle) (zoom in on enlarged image, no optional emergency door)

The "emergency" release was in the handle for the inside (push red lever)

You can see the "normal" placards on the panel door.

The hicks placard did NOT come from inside Norjak.

Hicks placard BUSTED.

NORJAKstaircontrolpanel.jpeg.169115ec34c19e45c44b68eece2f0878.jpeg

 

To compare, another 727-100 stair control panel door.. with the optional emergency next to it and placards on the main panel door.

727emergencyaftstairrelease.jpeg.6c91b5b85f6bd3d15b216481dd5126e1.jpeg

 

 

 

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(edited)

The Mystery of D.B. Cooper: OPINION

Well, I watched the video just now and I can see how it would get bad reviews from the media. I was right, too. Dower was looking for the fringe angle on the Cooper case investigators. He wasn't looking for a solution. 

However, it was good in one respect. It was an update on some of the witnesses, such as Tina Mucklow, and I was glad to see Jo Weber was still alive and looked pretty healthy to me for her age. 

Of course...like the OTHER documentaries that have been done on Cooper....Dower failed to ask any of the still-living eyewitnesses if they had any opinions on the main suspects, or show them pictures. The only people giving their opinions on that were people who never actually SAW Cooper hijacking Flight 305, or like Jo Weber, focus on a single suspect. Why the directors of all these documentaries never ask the witnesses the obvious question, ("Have you seen pictures or articles on any of the suspects people talk about, and if so...do you have an opinion on any of them?") well...I haven't a clue why they don't ask that question. IMHO it is the biggest question you should ask, and once again...Dower failed on that account. The closest any of them came to that was in D.B. Cooper - Case Closed? when they tried to have Mucklow identify Robert Rackstraw as the hijacker, which she did not. In fact, she said he WASN'T Cooper. Their mistake in that one was to bet the farm on Rackstraw, and in case Mucklow fails to ID him, at least try for some of the OTHER suspects...in that way they could take credit for possibly solving the case. But they wanted Rackstraw or nothing...and that's one of the main reasons the show was a failure. 

That answer by Mucklow, saying she was certain Rackstraw was NOT Cooper, implies that if she DID see a suspect she believed to be Cooper, she would confirm that suspect. But no one ever bothers to go down that road with her, or with any of the other living eyewitnesses. 

Bruce Smith, I see...was NOT portrayed as a 'nut,' which believe it or not, I thought was a good thing. And they didn't hit on him regarding the Ramtha stuff, which I have done myself, and later decided was unfair to Bruce. I guess everyone has a right to believe and worship anything they wish as long as it doesn't involve hurting others. 

I'm glad they decided to cut my part from this film, though. I would be embarrassed to appear in it. But I'm also glad that Bruce and I got paid. That way, I feel my time was not wasted. After seeing all these documentaries...and you are going to hate this...I still think the Decoded episode stands head and shoulders above every one that has been presented since 2011. 

But you want them (film and documentary producers) to continue trying anyway. Maybe one of them will figure out it's time to ask certain witnesses the Big Question once and for all. Especially Mucklow and Bill Mitchell. 

***********************

EDIT: One small bit of very key evidence DID emerge from the show, and most people probably didn't notice it. It was when Tina Mucklow described the bomb as specifically being 'red sticks wrapped with red electrical tape'. Why is this significant? Because Mucklow and FBI Agent Tom Manning both run a distant second and third with this description of the bomb. 

The FIRST person to say that was none other than Denise, Bernie Geestman's niece. HER testimony on that came during the summer of 2013, and was done a second time for the Dower movie, although it did not appear in the film. 

Timeline on this fact: 

February 2011:  Bernie Geestman's niece contacts me after she and her family saw the Decoded show. They got together and watched it because she knew Christiansen and saw the previews. Told me I had her 'Uncle Bernie' pegged to a T. Said she might have some helpful information, but was reluctant to come forward because her uncle was still alive, and he was family. 

August 2013: After much time working through Denise's son, I manage to get an interview with Denise, her son, and the son's girlfriend that lasted an hour. The meeting was done at the Dairy Freeze restaurant across from Sumner High School. The family was provided a preliminary copy of the KC report that was later going to the Seattle FBI. Along the way, Denise mentions that she did see Kenny working on something (I thought at first she said, 'in a shed') in Geestman's garage about two weeks prior to the hijacking. She said he was taking filled rolls of quarters, taping them end-to-end using red electrical tape, and had cut short wires which he was attaching to the rolls. At first I did not take her testimony seriously because there was no corroboration, and to that point NO ONE had ever said anything about the bomb like that. It was always described as red sticks, wires, and a battery. I filed it away and thought little about it. 

November 2013: Reporter Clyde Lewis shoots a video at the Ariel Store. One of the things presented was the Cowlitz County Sheriff's original notebook from the day of, and after, the hijacking, which is mostly full of notes on the search for Cooper. I take still shots from the video when the owner of the notebook starts showing pages for Lewis. I see pages like THIS: (added red lines are mine)

image.png.eb24434ce36da0c418c3548f2c25c04d.png

This info was provided to the Sheriff by FBI Agent Tom Manning:

image.png.2b1f39fd034b88290e8cccc017d8dccd.png

The above notebook entry also states they think the landing area was about '2 1/2 (miles) south of Ariel, and four miles north-northwest of Crawford.' This matches the information later provided by Paul Soderlind and his team.

BELOW: Off the subject, but Manning says that Cooper's last communication with the crew was at 8:05PM, with a jump time of 8:13. This is probably accurate to a minute or two. Remember, this is only a day or so AFTER the hijacking and there was no analysis yet by Soderlind's team, or any 'flight path map'. 

image.png.3928896b940defaf118ec22c4f8c57eb.png

To this point in time...the FBI has not released the files we examine these days. Geoff Gray has not released his unredacted files either. ( released 2014?) Yet by this date, TWO different sources (for the first time) have now described the bomb as being sticks wrapped in red plastic, (Manning, via the Sheriff's notebook) and Denise, who says specifically it was red electrical tape. 

During filming of the Dower movie at the Eatonville Public Library, Denise once again tells her story for Dower, and goes into more detail. She corrects me about when I said 'a shed out back of Bernie's house'. She tells Dower on camera it was the garage. She says she walked in and Kenny Christiansen was taping the quarter rolls together in twos, end to end, that she saw a large battery nearby, and he was cutting wires and laying them aside, and some of them were already attached to the coin rolls. She asks Kenny what he's making. He says, "It's a battery storage device." Then Kenny tells her 'you aren't supposed to be in here' and tells her to leave. So she does. 

For the Dower movie: Tina Mucklow tells Dower that the 'dynamite sticks' were wrapped in red electrical tape. She is specific about this point. It's the first time she has said this. 

What does this tell me? It tells me Denise isn't lying, didn't make up that story...and she knew about it FIRST. There is no other way to explain it. This is far beyond the realm of coincidence or a lucky guess. That is now THREE sources for the same evidence, only it turns out that Denise was right, and her story is now confirmed by the Sheriff's notebook and what Tom Manning said for him, as well as the only witness (Mucklow) who actually SAW the bomb. 

The Clyde Lewis video, shot in November 2013, released in December:

John Dower wasn't looking for the truth, or trying to pin the hijacking on any specific suspect. He was making an art film for festivals and HBO. 

Edited by RobertMBlevins
Some clarifications

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8 hours ago, RobertMBlevins said:

 

***********************

EDIT: One small bit of very key evidence DID emerge from the show, and most people probably didn't notice it. It was when Tina Mucklow described the bomb as specifically being 'red sticks wrapped with red electrical tape'. Why is this significant? Because Mucklow and FBI Agent Tom Manning both run a distant second and third with this description of the bomb. 

 

Tina said "what looked like dynamite they were strapped together with electricians tape"..

she didn't say the tape was red.

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(edited)
9 hours ago, FLYJACK said:

The Dower film is here,,

 

 

The FBI said they looked but couldn't find the cigarette butts,, their own doc says they destroyed them in Reno..

cigbutssdestroyed.jpeg.aefd779d66bac732b3f5f3c129daa277.jpeg

 

Here is the rear stairwell and panel from Norjak.. at Reno.

As I suspected, the placard was not from inside NORJAK..

NO OPTIONAL EMERGENCY RELEASE SYSTEM.. (pull red handle) (zoom in on enlarged image, no optional emergency door)

The "emergency" release was in the handle for the inside (push red lever)

You can see the "normal" placards on the panel door.

The hicks placard did NOT come from inside Norjak.

Hicks placard BUSTED.

NORJAKstaircontrolpanel.jpeg.169115ec34c19e45c44b68eece2f0878.jpeg

 

To compare, another 727-100 stair control panel door.. with the optional emergency next to it and placards on the main panel door.

727emergencyaftstairrelease.jpeg.6c91b5b85f6bd3d15b216481dd5126e1.jpeg

 

 

 

Image with contrast and brightness adjusted,,

NO OPTIONAL EMERGENCY RELEASE PANEL..

Only that optional emergency system has a pull red handle operation. The normal one uses the lever and is a push operation,, that proves the Hicks Placard did not come from inside NORJAK.

placardnorjakcontrast.jpg.9ec882f0a28bea401d954e4c5baae2a5.jpg

Edited by FLYJACK

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(edited)

Here is the TBAR money find spot using a 1981 map for reference... about 35-40 ft from the water along the high water line. A 10% slope means 3.5 - 4 ft above River height.. 

YOU DON"T NEED THE 72 OR 74 FLOOD TO REACH IT..

 

 

 

tbarstick.jpeg

 

Tree location pattern matches,,,  the only match.

tbarspotmatch.jpg

July81moneyspotsa.jpg

Edited by FLYJACK

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19 hours ago, RobertMBlevins said:

I still think the Decoded episode stands head and shoulders above every one that has been presented since 2011. 

 

Brad Meltzer is a goof and anything with his name associated with it - that tries to present itself as real and factual - has zero credibility. All of those Decoded shows were laughable, not just the one on Cooper. That's my opinion and it has nothing to do with you or Kenny C  or any other suspect that they could have chosen for that show.

For me, "The Skyjacker That Got Away" is the best doc that I've seen on Cooper. I also really enjoyed the Recca doc that was on Amazon. I certainly don't but into him as a suspect, but the doc was very well done and enjoyable.

Decoded and Case Closed were both trash.

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(edited)
59 minutes ago, ParrotheadVol said:

Brad Meltzer is a goof and anything with his name associated with it - that tries to present itself as real and factual - has zero credibility. All of those Decoded shows were laughable, not just the one on Cooper. That's my opinion and it has nothing to do with you or Kenny C  or any other suspect that they could have chosen for that show.

For me, "The Skyjacker That Got Away" is the best doc that I've seen on Cooper. I also really enjoyed the Recca doc that was on Amazon. I certainly don't but into him as a suspect, but the doc was very well done and enjoyable.

Decoded and Case Closed were both trash.

Skyjacker That Got Away was good. Of course it was...it was produced by National Geographic. The Decoded show was NOT trash. The production company was NOT being raided by the FBI, and did not lose their contract for other shows as a result. That would be DB Cooper-Case Closed. 

The Decoded cast consisted of Christine McKinley, an engineer who runs her own successful consulting business in Portland and has her own (also successful) band in the same area. Then you have Buddy Levy, a professor of English at Washington State University, and the best-selling author of multiple historical books. Lastly, there is Scott Rolle, a former State of Maryland prosecutor who also served a recent tour of duty in Afghanistan as an officer in the Army Reserve. He is now a judge in Maryland. I never met Brad Meltzer personally. From what I understand, he had not that much to do with the show, which means he had about as much to do with production as Lawrence Fishburne has to do with the production of the new mystery series he hosts. 

These people were not on History Channel for two seasons because they were dishonest, or amateurs. And all the production staff were honest professionals with excellent production values. I should know. I worked with many of them. 

You have no idea what you are talking about. As far as the Reca documentary, it's hard to call that show good when its very premise was based on an outright lie. What I mean is that the show had the absolute nerve to foist off on viewers the idea that Flight 305 made a side trip almost a hundred miles east to Cle Elum, WA before it turned south to Portland. Any show based on The Big Lie is a show that never should have aired. 

EDIT: I see I was mistaken on the Mucklow testimony for the show. You are right. She did NOT say 'red' regarding the electrical tape. However...Agent Tom Manning DOES mention red as the color in which the sticks are wrapped. And the ONLY place he could have obtained that information was Tina Mucklow, because SHE was the only one who actually saw the bomb. And so did Bernie Geestman's niece. She was certain on this point. It is too bad that whoever was interviewing Tina didn't ask her the color, because obviously she told the FBI originally it was red tape. Otherwise Manning would not have that information. And since throughout the years the bomb has always been described as 'red sticks, wires, a big battery', it is logical to assume they were wrapped in red tape. 

For example, if Cooper had tried using road flares, they would have been easily recognized due to all the printing that is on them, plus the ignition cap on the end. Same thing using coin rolls taped end to end. They would have been recognized as that. So SOMETHING was wrapping those sticks to conceal what they really were. Dynamite is almost exclusively a tan color, not red. 

Edited by RobertMBlevins

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(edited)
51 minutes ago, RobertMBlevins said:

Skyjacker That Got Away was good. Of course it was...it was produced by National Geographic. The Decoded show was NOT trash. The production company was NOT being raided by the FBI, and did not lose their contract for other shows as a result. That would be DB Cooper-Case Closed. 

The Decoded cast consisted of Christine McKinley, an engineer who runs her own successful consulting business in Portland and has her own (also successful) band in the same area. Then you have Buddy Levy, a professor of English at Washington State University, and the best-selling author of multiple historical books. Lastly, there is Scott Rolle, a former State of Maryland prosecutor who also served a recent tour of duty in Afghanistan as an officer in the Army Reserve. He is now a judge in Maryland. I never met Brad Meltzer personally. From what I understand, he had not that much to do with the show, which means he had about as much to do with production as Lawrence Fishburne has to do with the production of the new mystery series he hosts. 

These people were not on History Channel for two seasons because they were dishonest, or amateurs. And all the production staff were honest professionals with excellent production values. I should know. I worked with many of them. 

You have no idea what you are talking about. As far as the Reca documentary, it's hard to call that show good when its very premise was based on an outright lie. What I mean is that the show had the absolute nerve to foist off on viewers the idea that Flight 305 made a side trip almost a hundred miles east to Cle Elum, WA before it turned south to Portland. Any show based on The Big Lie is a show that never should have aired. 

EDIT: I see I was mistaken on the Mucklow testimony for the show. You are right. She did NOT say 'red' regarding the electrical tape. However...Agent Tom Manning DOES mention red as the color in which the sticks are wrapped. And the ONLY place he could have obtained that information was Tina Mucklow, because SHE was the only one who actually saw the bomb. And so did Bernie Geestman's niece. She was certain on this point. It is too bad that whoever was interviewing Tina didn't ask her the color, because obviously she told the FBI originally it was red tape. Otherwise Manning would not have that information. 

Red Plastic Tape is mentioned in the files..

But, in 1971 red electrical tape was for pros. Black was the common generic one.

Where would red tape be used?

 

Red electrical tape signifies ‘low voltage, phase B’

 

Hahneman was an electrical engineer...

 

Edited by FLYJACK

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28 minutes ago, FLYJACK said:

Red Plastic Tape is mentioned in the files..

But, in 1971 red electrical tape was for pros. Black was the common generic one.

Where would red tape be used?

Red electrical tape signifies ‘low voltage, phase B’

Hahneman was an electrical engineer...

I'll buy that. It's a guess, but red tape was probably used both as a cover to conceal the real nature of the sticks, and for dramatic effect. 

On a side note, I expect that new inquiries regarding the Cooper event we're planning for June will jump again after tomorrow. And I'm not even ON that show. Currently, about one or two inquiries a day drift into the email box. Two of three are just people wanting more details. The others actually want to go, or at least see if we finalize the thing. That won't happen for a few months, because we are depending on a Covid vaccine to become commonly available. As most of you know, we're making getting both doses of the vaccine a non-negotiable requirement for attendance. I don't think this is too much to ask. Hell, by late next year anyone applying for a job will probably be asked if they've gotten the shots. It's already being discussed on the internet here and there. Not the Cooper Party, but whether employers might make the Covid vaccine a requirement for employment, sort of like taking a drug test or something. It's possible they may start doing this, but I can't say whether it is legal, or job discrimination. A private event is different. I already checked on that. :/

Edited by RobertMBlevins

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37 minutes ago, FLYJACK said:

Conceal??

The sticks were reddish and looked like dynamite.. 

why bundle with rare red tape and not black?

Now we're getting into guesswork and mind-reading here. The official FBI line for years was red sticks, wires, and a battery. Later, we find out the sticks themselves weren't necessarily red on their own, but were wrapped in 'red plastic' or red electrical tape. REAL dynamite is usually a tan color, not red. If you aren't using REAL dynamite, then you are using something else to pass off convincingly as REAL dynamite. Road flares won't work and they are too long unless you cut them in half. Coin rolls, like road flares, have printing on them. 

If you want me to guess why red tape was probably used to cover the sticks, I would say dramatic effect, and that the sticks were NOT actual dynamite. Real dynamite only has a shelf life of about a year, because nitroglycerin either starts forming on the outside of it in crystal form, or in liquid pooling in whatever it is stored in. Either situation is extremely dangerous. 

Another consideration, beyond the fact that most dynamite is tan, and not red like the movies (a few exceptions, but it's mostly tan-colored) is because even back in 1971 you had to (generally speaking) present ID and sign for purchases unless you were a known representative from companies that did a lot of business in explosives. Plus, if you make a real bomb, you have to dispose of it, and there's always the danger you will blow yourself up just carrying it around. The bomb, in my humble opinion, was 99% a fake. 

Edited by RobertMBlevins

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21 hours ago, RobertMBlevins said:

The closest any of them came to that was in D.B. Cooper - Case Closed? when they tried to have Mucklow identify Robert Rackstraw as the hijacker, which she did not. In fact, she said he WASN'T Cooper. Their mistake in that one was to bet the farm on Rackstraw, and in case Mucklow fails to ID him, at least try for some of the OTHER suspects...in that way they could take credit for possibly solving the case. But they wanted Rackstraw or nothing...and that's one of the main reasons the show was a failure. 

 

 

Robert, when you say things like this, I have to believe you did not watch the History Channel program on DB Cooper.  Rackstraw was Tom Colbert's suspect. At the end of the show, the two investigators (Billy Jepsen and Tom Fuentes) said they did not believe Rackstraw was Cooper.  The rest of Colbert's team left him -- not believing Rackstraw was Cooper.  Tom Colbert was all alone advocating that.

There really is no way to watch the program and reach that conclusion.

 

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52 minutes ago, MarkBennett said:

Robert, when you say things like this, I have to believe you did not watch the History Channel program on DB Cooper.  Rackstraw was Tom Colbert's suspect. At the end of the show, the two investigators (Billy Jepsen and Tom Fuentes) said they did not believe Rackstraw was Cooper.  The rest of Colbert's team left him -- not believing Rackstraw was Cooper.  Tom Colbert was all alone advocating that.

There really is no way to watch the program and reach that conclusion.

Billy Jensen, the NY Times reporter who was a part of that production, wanted absolutely nothing to do with the whole show after it aired. I have emails from him about this. 

The show foolishly bet everything that Rackstraw was their guy, but JUST as foolishly didn't take their opportunity with Tina Mucklow to show her OTHER pictures of the more famous suspects. They focused on Rackstraw alone. 

When the show was in early production, their production team emailed me and asked what 'I had' on Kenny Christiansen as a suspect. So it was my assumption they were going to try all the doors with Mucklow. I sent them a copy of the report we sent the FBI on Christiansen, some evidentiary pictures, stuff like that. They even ran KC's picture in the ads. So I was assuming they were going to take a fair and level approach in the show. But they didn't...and they got burned. I guess it never occurred to them that if Mucklow ID's one of the main suspects as probably Cooper...then they would take all the credit for bringing that to life. 

But I know the reason they didn't do that. The Colbert book was already written, uploaded, and ready for sale at Amazon the very next day after the show premiered. This turned out to be another foolish move...writing a book and releasing it saying a certain guy was Cooper (for sure) BEFORE you get confirmation from the best witness available. We didn't even do that for Into The Blast. I told people in the book that 'readers would have to judge for themselves.' That's why Jensen wanted out of the whole mess. The production company was being raided by REAL FBI agents at the same time, but not about the Cooper show. But it ended up that this same company lost the contract to many lucrative shows they were producing. Some of the shows closed, others were taken up by other production companies. It was a big mess...and the absolutely worst show ever done on the Cooper case. Or it could be a tie, with the Reca presentation right up there along with Colbert's program. 

whichfbi.jpg

ABOVE:  The cartoon pokes fun at the fact that while retired FBI agents and other LEO personnel were working on the Rackstraw show, REAL FBI agents were raiding LMNO Productions at the same time and seizing all their financial records. Gotta admit it's bizarre. ^_^

Edited by RobertMBlevins

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