Thursday, April 19, 2007

Just a reminder

Remember how Ron Brown died:
Eleven years ago tomorrow, a United States Air Force plane carrying the body of Commerce Secretary Ron Brown and those of 32 other Americans left Croatia for Dover Air Force Base in Delaware.

The 33 Americans had died, not all of them immediately, when their U.S. Air Force aircraft crashed "inexplicably" into a mountainside less than two miles from the Cilipi Airport near Dubrovnik.

An hour after the plane departed, and a day before the Air Force was to question him, Croatian Niko Jerkuic, the man responsible for the Cilipi Airport's navigation system, showed up dead with a bullet hole through his chest. Authorities claimed suicide.

The next day, Easter Sunday that year, an Armed Forces Institute of Pathology forensic photographer, U.S. Navy CPO Kathleen Janoski, mounted a stepladder at the Dover mortuary and began to shoot Ron Brown's body.

"Wow," said Janoski upon spotting a circular indentation in Brown's skull, "that looks like a bullet hole."

The pathologists who heard her cry and heeded it would soon enough wish they hadn't. It would cost them and Janoski their careers.


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