Sep 23-01

Past-E-Mail: Cam Notes - 2001: September: Sep 23-01
Memories of Douglas Houghton Falls    ...scroll down to share comments
photo by Nancy Nelson

Charlie at Pasty Central on Sunday, September 23, 2001 - 05:09 pm:

Recently we've had several requests to see Douglas Houghton Falls, now inaccesssible to the public. Just so happens that the original shoebox-er, Nancy Nelson, found this shot among her memories. We would be curious to know if someone has a more current color picture, but this vertical Pastyvision gives a good feel for the sheer height of this wonder of nature.

If you've been wondering about the U.P. being represented in the current troop deployment, here's a report from the deck of the USS Kearsarge, an Amphibious Assault Ship designed to load, transport, and land Marines and their equipment. Lieutenant Keith Sheffler writes:

"We are currently located somewhere in the Mediterranean Sea.

Most of my family resides up in Pelkie and even though I grew up downstate, I spent as much time as I could up there. I attended MTU from 94-98, graduating with a BS in Social Sciences. I joined the Marines in Oct of 98 and am now a First Lieutenant. I'm currently assigned as the Anti-Terrorism Training Officer for Battalion Landing Team 2/8, 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit. We've been deployed from our base in North Carolina since April and we were scheduled to return home next month - which I'm not counting on till I set foot on the U.S. once again. With the recent terrorist attacks back home, things have changed dramatically.....

If and when out internet access is working on ship I always make sure to check for some updated pictures of back home. I love the fall up there and knowing that this will be my fourth year missing it saddens me. My views here are usually constricted to the metal interior of the ship or the endless sight of blue sky and water - so seeing images from back home always helps out.

Everyone here appreciates all the support we are getting from the folks back In the U.S. -- we want everyone to know if and when we are called upon we will execute our mission swiftly and decisively."

Keith Sheffler
1stLt USMC
A Few Good Men

By Kate, CA on Sunday, September 23, 2001 - 05:33 pm:

Thank you, Lieutenant Sheffler, for your willingness to defend our personal freedom. I'm sorry you have to be there, but for myself, and other generations, I'm so very grateful that you are. Wish I could send you a pasty! :-)

By DMac/LakeLinden MI on Sunday, September 23, 2001 - 07:06 pm:

Salute Lieutenant! Hat's off and God Bless you and all your fellow military personnel. Keep the faith. You WILL step back on U.S. soil! :)

By Lesley on Sunday, September 23, 2001 - 07:21 pm:

Bless you, and thanks from all of us.

By Lesley on Sunday, September 23, 2001 - 07:24 pm:

ps. What a coincidence! Did you have anything to say about being assigned to the "Kearsarge?!" Next thing you know, they'll name a ship the "Ahmeek" or the "Calumet!"

By Jan, Bootjack, Mi on Sunday, September 23, 2001 - 09:20 pm:

Lieutenant Keith Sheffler,

Thank you for your service for all of us at home. Come back safe, and if you like leave an email addres so we can write you . How did the Kearsarge get its name?

By Sharon Smith on Sunday, September 23, 2001 - 09:37 pm:

Charlie, I almost sent you the attached when the original call went out for a picture of Houghton Falls, but it's pretty old, too - September 1981. Curiously, it seems to be taken from just about exactly the same spot the PastyCam shot was taken, only clearly a lot later in the year! This one is on my website, too.

John Dee hiked to the bottom of the falls in the summer of 2000, and there were some pictures from there on his website - I don't know if you could get him to submit some.


The Falls

Ken from da UP on Sunday, September 23, 2001 - 11:04 pm:

Godspeed to the 'Kearsarge' and crew and the rest of those fellas and gals on their way to that area of the world. Thank you for your willingness to fight for the freedoms we all enjoy over here. Freedom certainly is not free or cheap. May God bless.

By JAS/Minneapolis on Monday, September 24, 2001 - 09:02 am:

Lt. Sheffler: You are never alone. Your Upper Peninsula Family always has you and your shipmates in their hearts and prayers. I love Pelkie, the Lutheran Church is postcard beautiful and the little old school with the “bus” is a favorite sidetrip. Fall really is so beautiful. I now live in Minneapolis and I believe we are starting to see the beginning of this best season right now. It was 42 degrees here this morning!! “Up North” was probably a little bit cooler.

By Chamberlain, Hancock, MI on Monday, September 24, 2001 - 10:47 am:

Does Keith have an E-MAIL ADDRESS where one can send pictures? Thank you for any help on this!

By YWB/ Richmond. on Monday, September 24, 2001 - 11:34 am:

Lt. Sheffler: May God Bless you and your shipmates. We at home are so very grateful for all the the armed services. You would be very proud of all the flags flying, and the PRIDE of this great country. You are being supported by all of us! Godspeed to all.

By MJB on Monday, September 24, 2001 - 03:53 pm:

Lt. Sheffler

God bless you from a Mohawk yooper. You and your shipmates are in our prayers.

By Elaine, Gurnee, IL on Monday, September 24, 2001 - 07:32 pm:

LT. Sheffler,

Thank you for for being "out there" for us. Believe me, we are all here praying hard for a peaceful end to all of this. But we know that if it does come to fighting you all will do us proud. God bless all of our armed forces, our allies and God Bless America!

By Ernie WA on Monday, September 24, 2001 - 07:34 pm:

God bless the USS Kearsarge and all the great service men and women on that ship and all others that are fighting to keep our freedom. As you know we lost a part of our freedom about 2 weeks ago. I am sure we will be back to normal before to long. This is a great country and we would like to keep it that way. Some people protest against war and fighting but if we don't fight to keep our freedom we will loose it. Our military is the best in the world and our troops need all the support we can give them.

By Ernie WA on Monday, September 24, 2001 - 07:56 pm:

Douglas Houghton Falls is a nice falls. Back in the later fifties when I lived in Lake Linden we would go to these falls and hike to the bottom and back. Once my brother cousin and I climed that rock face just to see if we could do it. Now I look back and see how close we were to getting injured or worse, getting killed. There is a tunnel about half way up. Been in it a few times. Its not very long, maybe 100 feet or so. Douglas Houghton Falls is on private property and has been closed off for a few years. It would be nice if the county would perchase the Falls area and once again open it to the public. It is a very nice hike.

By SS, Michigan on Tuesday, September 25, 2001 - 08:58 am:

Message from Keith's parents-
Thanks to all of you for your messages of support. We have forwarded them to Keith since he is not always able to access the internet, but he can send and receive e-mail most of the time.
His e-mail address while aboard ship is:
The original Kearsarge was launched in 1861 and was named after a mountain in New Hampshire.
The ship deployed at the current time is the fourth Kearsarge and in 1995 participated in the rescue of Air Force Captain Scott O'Grady from Bosnia.

By Julie Lake Orion, MI on Tuesday, September 25, 2001 - 01:43 pm:

God Bless you and the rest of the brave men and women of this country willing to stand up and fight for our freedom !

By Pat Burke on Tuesday, September 25, 2001 - 06:40 pm:

Best wishes, and MANY thanks to Lt. Sheffler and his comrades.

Re: DH falls: How long has it been inaccessible? What a shame...that was our favorite spot to go rappelling back ...umm..ok, I admit it, the mid 70's.

By Kathleen Hartman, Texas on Wednesday, September 26, 2001 - 10:13 am:

Lt. Sheffler - Thanks for the picture on the boat
Our son is there on that boat too I think! His Dad was raised in Brighton, MI, so we have friends that keep us "hooked" up to news! Our son is Cpl Michael T. Hartman - he "fixes" the helicopters (that's a Mom's definition of his job!). We are all praying for the safe return of your ship and of course for the safety of all the men and women in the service of our country. Take care, Mr. and Mrs. Dennis Hartman

By former NAVY on Wednesday, September 26, 2001 - 11:39 am:


That is a ship not a boat... Boat is usually refers to submarines and small craft..

Remember (when not refering to subs): You can fit a boat in a ship, but not a ship in a boat

By Daniel Bierman Michigan on Wednesday, September 26, 2001 - 11:53 am:

Douglass Houghton Falls is one of the most beautiful Falls in the entire UP! The fact that it is closed to public viewing, is almost incomprehensible! The county should purchase the land, erect safety barriers, promote it, and make it accessable to the public. I believe it could help tourism in the area also.
Daniel Bierman

By Mary Schei, Florida on Wednesday, September 26, 2001 - 02:43 pm:

When I was young, (mid 60's) we not only hiked through the woods to Douglass Houghton falls on a regular basis but we would also go back into the cave underneath the falls. If our parents knew they would have tanned our hides, but it was so scary and inviting that we couldn't help ourselves. Not to mention the fact that you would be branded as a chicken if you didn't and to a kid that was the ultimate insult.

By Mrs Grieves, Portsmouth UK on Thursday, September 27, 2001 - 12:16 pm:

To the "Ships" company of USS Kearsarge - Our best
regards to all including our nephew, Cpl Mike
Hartman, everyone in Great Britain appreciates
the efforts of all the allied forces and wishes
you all a successful mission - whatever
that may be. God bless freedom.

Phil Grieves (ex Royal Navy) and Marie Grieves
Kellie John and Lil Morgan Grieves

By janmarie on Thursday, September 27, 2001 - 07:43 pm:

Boat or ship, I wish it didn't have to be where it is, doing what it's probably going to be doing. I wish all the men and women aboard could be home with their families. However, since that isn't possible at this time, my thoughts and prayers will continue to be with all who serve our country. God bless.

By Ken from da UP on Friday, September 28, 2001 - 09:53 pm:

I think that someone should send a message to Osama Bin Laden that the fat lady is singing. Maybe the "Kearsarge" will be part of it.

By Greta, Ca on Sunday, September 30, 2001 - 06:00 pm:

Lt. Sheffler, God bless you, and all America's military. America's freedom depends on brave people like you. You are in our prayers day and night, and we know that you'll do your job to the utmost perfection. Thank you, thank you, for keeping our country free, and our children safe.
God bless you, and God bless America!

By Greta, Ca on Sunday, September 30, 2001 - 06:06 pm:

The Douglas Hougton falls are on my cousin's private property. It's closed off because the foot traffic was doing damage, and eroding the earth around them.

By David H. Ferndale,MI. on Tuesday, October 9, 2001 - 11:55 pm:

I last saw the Falls in the early 90's,it was as Greta say's,eroding the earth around them.Are you the Greta who worked at Calumet Electronics in the late 70's?

By Greta, Ca on Saturday, October 20, 2001 - 03:18 pm:

To David from Ferndale, no, I'm not the Greta you're referring to. I've been transplanted in Southern California since 1965, but come home every summer I'm able.

By Jennifer, Green Bay, WI on Tuesday, November 9, 2004 - 02:00 pm:

Not sure if anyone will read this as it is November 9, 2004. But I knew Keith while he was a MTU. I think of you a lot and pray that you are safe.

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