A WWII radioman's 'tower' of power

Here’s a local development that illustrates the power of a book: On Dec. 22, the tower at Spokane International Airport was officially named the Ray Daves Air Traffic Control Tower.

And it all came about because of the 2008 book “Radioman: An Eyewitness Account of Pearl Harbor and World War II in the Pacific” (Thomas Dunne Books/St. Martin’s Press) by Carol Hipperson, a Spokane author.

“Radioman” is about Ray Daves, a local Pearl Harbor survivor. His story resonated with the air traffic controllers at the airport, who started a drive to name the tower after their fellow radioman.

It wasn’t easy. In fact, it took an act of Congress. But they persevered, and the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate came on board. On Dec. 22, President Obama signed a bill officially naming the tower after Daves.

And on Feb. 25, Daves and Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, who sponsored the legislation, will be at the tower for a dedication ceremony.

“It’s about the power of a book,” said Hipperson. “You could even refer to it as a ‘concrete example.’”

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Jim Kershner
is a senior correspondent who writes for the Today section.





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