Hurricane Hunter's widow looks back - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Hurricane Hunter's widow looks back

September 27, 2005

Coolidge, Georgia-- While so many people run away from hurricanes like Katrina and Rita, some actually run into them. That was the case of a Navy Hurricane hunter from South Georgia who was killed 50 years ago this week on a mission.

"He joined the Hurricane Hunters, which I begged him not to do, but he was that type of man. He said he could do some good for other people, and that's what he died doing. says Betty Stocker.

Despite the passing decades, Stocker will never forget her late husband, Navy Lieutenant George Herlong. "He volunteered for this mission for a man whose wife was having a baby, and they flew into San Juan, Puerto Rico. And from there, they flew into Hurricane Janet," she says.

Herlong was the co-pilot aboard a P2V storm chaser. A ham radio operator heard its mayday that fateful day, and immediately relayed it to the Navy. "When I saw those Navy men come to my door, I knew he was dead. They searched for eleven days for them and never found a sign of the airplane or of any person. They got sucked down into a down draft," says Stocker.

Sad irony was born out of Herlong's death. The daughter he never met still keeps in touch with the new father who was supposed to be on that plane. "He was just so tickled that I was pregnant and going to have another baby, and then he didn't get to see her. And she never saw her father. Her son looks just like him," says Stocker.

That's the legacy of a man who can't be replaced by another, but a new love did offer Stocker closure from her first love. "For years and years I dreamed that someone would call me and tell me that he was in Alaska or he was in Hawaii and I could fly. Just as I got to him I'd wake up. But since I married my husband, I don't dream those dreams anymore," says Stocker.

George Herlong was killed along with 10 other crew members. He was 24 years old.

Feedback: news@walb.com

  • More WALB News10 HeadlinesMore News HeadlinesMore>>

  • Pretoria Fields hosts family Earth day

    Pretoria Fields hosts family Earth day

    Sunday, April 22 2018 6:00 PM EDT2018-04-22 22:00:05 GMT
    Pretoria Fields Collective hosted a family earth day event Sunday. (Source: WALB)Pretoria Fields Collective hosted a family earth day event Sunday. (Source: WALB)

    A downtown Albany business invited families to celebrate Earth Day Sunday. Pretoria Fields Collective hosted an event where families got to do arts and crafts while enjoying a pint or two. 

    More >>

    A downtown Albany business invited families to celebrate Earth Day Sunday. Pretoria Fields Collective hosted an event where families got to do arts and crafts while enjoying a pint or two. 

    More >>
  • Albany-Dougherty community cleans up litter for 'Stash the Trash'

    Albany-Dougherty community cleans up litter for 'Stash the Trash'

    Sunday, April 22 2018 5:48 PM EDT2018-04-22 21:48:19 GMT
    Hundreds of people participated in cleaning up around Albany and Dougherty County over the weekend. (Source: Keep Albany-Dougherty Beautiful)Hundreds of people participated in cleaning up around Albany and Dougherty County over the weekend. (Source: Keep Albany-Dougherty Beautiful)
    Hundreds of people participated in cleaning up around Albany and Dougherty County over the past two days. (Source: Keep Albany-Dougherty Beautiful)Hundreds of people participated in cleaning up around Albany and Dougherty County over the past two days. (Source: Keep Albany-Dougherty Beautiful)

    Hundreds of people participated in cleaning up around Albany and Dougherty County over the weekend. It was part of Keep Albany-Dougherty Beautiful's Stash the Trash event.

    More >>

    Hundreds of people participated in cleaning up around Albany and Dougherty County over the weekend. It was part of Keep Albany-Dougherty Beautiful's Stash the Trash event.

    More >>
  • Victims of aggravated assault speak out

    Victims of aggravated assault speak out

    Sunday, April 22 2018 5:47 PM EDT2018-04-22 21:47:37 GMT
    Harvey was victim to a paintball shooting Saturday night. (Source: WALB)Harvey was victim to a paintball shooting Saturday night. (Source: WALB)

    The Albany Police Department is looking into two aggravated assaults, involving paintball guns, both in the same night.  The first incident happened around 10:15 Saturday night, and the second was 10 minutes later. 

    More >>

    The Albany Police Department is looking into two aggravated assaults, involving paintball guns, both in the same night.  The first incident happened around 10:15 Saturday night, and the second was 10 minutes later. 

    More >>
Powered by Frankly