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Wow!!! I did not know of this accident until right now...

And your description of life there in the 50's - double wow - so exactly like it was. My dad was the chief aeronautical engineer for Rocketdyne in Canoga Park, and he spent a lot of time at Santa Susanna. I lived in Northeast Canoga Park when I was six, up against the mountains, and when there were still orange groves and asparagus fields. Then we moved over to West Canoga Park, right next to Pierce College. Hot weather, baseball (and all sports) all day every day, playing in the water, exploring the hills behind Pierce when they were putting all the houses (Pierce was just bungalows then). I also remember the constant small earthquakes, the regular sound of the rocket engine tests, and the ash that fell from the sky from the brush fires every fall. Remember all that? Stirring up some ghosts for me!!

My dad had been transferred twice to Neosho, Missouri by Rocketdyne, and that is where we were in summer of 1959 - so we weren't around for the actual meltdown. But one does wonder, just how many people's health were effected by that accident? Maybe there needs to be a third movie of Chinatown, this time including the secret meltdown.

Great diary - thank you - and very sorry to here about your mom. Makes me wonder - my father died of a sudden heart attach at age 46 in 1964- he worked a lot up at Santa Susanna testing the rocket engines...

"Once in awhile we get shown the light, in the strangest of places, if we look at it right" - Hunter/Garcia

by whataboutbob on Tue Jul 21st, 2009 at 04:26:58 AM EST

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