About the Author
Russell Leon Sandlin
Is a disabled Navy Viet Nam veteran, who served two tours in the Southeast Asian Theater of Operations, assigned to the USS Racine (LST-1191) operating with amphibious forces. Sandlin served as quartermaster (navigation) between November 1972 and September 1974. USS Racine (LST-1191) operated close offshore in the Mekong Delta and Saigon River areas bringing in personnel and supplies
In November 1974, at the end of Sandlin's second and final tour in Southeast Asia, his ship entered Pearl Harbor, Hawaii to refuel. After three days, USS Racine (LST-1191) departed Pearl Harbor, returning to San Diego, California. Once underway, the ship moved up the channel approaching the USS Arizona (BB-39) Memorial. As Senior Petty Officer of Navigation, Sandlin received permission from the ship's commanding officer to render ship's honors using the public address intercom system.
Russell Sandlin is the last of four generations in his family that served in military service, beginning soon after December 7th 1941. From World War II, Korea and Viet Nam, all in his family were transported by ship to the Far East from the US west coast, stopping in Pearl Harbor to refuel, and all rendered honor to the Arizona Memorial as they sailed by.
These experiences became Sandlin's inspiration after 30 years of devotion and model ship construction experience to create a 1/700 scale model ship collection which duplicates the appearance of the United States Pacific Fleet in 1941. All ships are represented by name, ship identification, and class type. The colors of camouflage used in 1941 are recreated as close as photographs would allow.