Among the many roles of the rugged PBY Catalina during the second world war was search and rescue operations for pilots and sailors who went missing after missions. If you were one such unfortunate, and saw this not very handsome aircraft descending through the mist it meant safety and home. The PBY was a true angel from heaven and many a serviceman got a second lease on life because of its ability to land and take off on the ocean. Even so, many of these planes left on missions and never returned. Notwithstanding warfare, the vast expanses of ocean are unforgiving, and the rescuers themselves faced the same hazards. This Memorial Day, here is my tribute to those we lost.