There are Americans Down There

This 60 Minutes episode had several important and interesting stories, national infrastructure, rebuilding Chernobyl, I wasn’t expecting the last story to grab me the way it did, but this clip says why.

Of the 400,000 American soldiers lost in World War II, 73,000 of them are still unaccounted for. This is a staggering number of families who never received final closure regarding their loved ones. As the story talks about, many families have gone the past 70 years believing great grandpa set up a life somewhere else or is living on a Pacific island with the locals.

Bent Prop is a non-profit organization dedicated to the recovery of as many of these service members as they can find. In this episode they chronicle the return of eight service members after two decades of work and 65 years under the waves. You can find the rest of the story here or watch on YouTube.

As I mentioned before, there are two other great stories in this episode. The first is about the massive construction effort going into making sure that the next major nuclear disaster isn’t once again Chernobyl. The structure covering the nuclear reactor in Ukraine is falling apart. This story explains the new construction going on to make sure the radiation stays locked away. Spoiler, it includes building the largest movable structure in the world!

The third story is one we have been hearing for years, American infrastructure is falling apart. This story continues to paint a grim picture about the intersection of aging bridges and US politics. The most amazing part of the reporting to me was how 104 year old rail bridge in the Northeast has become a choke point for all rail traffic in the region. The bridge swings open and closed to allow river traffic through and when it fails, trains back up all along the northeast corridor.

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