It Go Boom

"It go Booom"
by Dick Mauer

The year was about 1980. Jack Gorman was the Chief Patrol Agent in Buffalo Sector and Tim Staebell was the resident cartoonist, having replaced Bob Stille, who had left his IA slot for greener pastures. 

Chief Gorman had purchased a propane car wash machine for the Buffalo Sector, an early type of power washer. The machine had been delivered and sat out in the garage awaiting action. Jack went out to examine his prize and decided to give it a test run. The chief had read the directions, but, apparently had waited too long between opening the valve on the propane tank and hitting the ignition button. The resultant explosion had everyone in the building ducking for cover, thinking we were under attack. 

With singed eyebrows and blackened face, the Chief was led back into the office by Sector Mechanic Roy Heaton and his assistant Keith. That scene was captured by Tim and resulted in the cartoon that was immediately posted on the bulletin board that memorialized the Chief's explanation, "It Go Booomm"

As I recall the car washer sat in the corner of the garage for a long time before anyone tried it again. 

I related the above story to Jack Gorman's family on the occasion of a memorial in his honor at Buffalo Sector that coincided with the Border Patrol anniversary on May 28, 2014. They enjoyed the story. Dan Allman found a copy of Tim's cartoon among the valued papers from his career.