Louis Post-Dispatch Fri, July 5, 1985
By Kathryn S. Love
Post-Dispatch Special Correspondent
Salem, Mo. - About 4,000 people who had assembled in the Mark Twain National Forest to pray for world peace got an ear-splitting reminder of war when two F-4 Phantom jets flew a simulated bombing run over their site Wednesday and Thursday.
The jets were from the Missouri National Guard out of Lambert Field. They thundered over the horizon at the annual Rainbow Family Peace and Spiritual Healing Gathering, clearing treetops and sending several frightened children crying to their parents for protection.
"Isn't this great?" asked one Rainbow father. "We don't have to be in Beirut. We can experience terror right here in our own country."
The Rainbow Family is a loosely organized group of latter-day flower children. They chose a 300-acre, forested site in the Salem ranger district of the Mark Twain Forest for their annual gathering July 1-7.
Salem District Ranger Bruce Platt said he had complained about the Phantoms after their first flight Wednesday. He was told by Air National Guard authorities that the jets routinely made simulated bombing runs at near by lead mines.
"They said there was nothing we could do about them," Platt said "But Thursday, we had two small planes and a helicopter in the vicinity at the same time. We radioed the Highway Patrol that this was congested air space and they got the jets out of there."
The jets screeched across the sky just before 4,000 people joined hands to pray and meditate silently for peace.
The crowd gathered at a large meadow dotted with tents, teepees and makeshift shelters. Paths from camping areas above and below the meadow were filled with a pilgrim like procession of dressed, partly dressed and undressed men, women and children who silently joined the prayer circle under the noontime sun.
Inside the ring of people, others quietly meditated alone or in small groups. One man blew soap bubbles over their heads, while another went silently from group to group offering water. Two women hugged each other and danced to an inner music while a solitary woman swayed with an unseen partner.
Whatever your mind can conceive and believe it will achieve. Dream great dreams and make them come true. Do it now. You are unique. In all the history of the world there was never anyone else exactly like you, and in all the infinity to come there will never be another you. Never affirm self limitations. What you believe yourself to be, you are. To accomplish great things, you must not only act, but also dream, not only plan but also believe. If you have built castles in the air your work need not be lost - put foundations under them. Yes you can. Believing is magic. You can always better your best. You don't know until you try. Nothing will come of nothing. If you don't go out on a limb, you're never going to get the fruit. There is no failure except in no longer trying. Hazy goals produce hazy results. Clearly define your goals. Write them down, make a plan for achieving them, set a deadline, visualize the results, and go after them. Just don't look back unless you want to go that way. Defeat mat test you, it need not stop you. If at first you don't succeed, try another way. For every obstacle there is a solution. Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. The greatest mistake is giving up. Wishing will not bring success, but planning, persistence, and a burning desire will. There is a gold mine within you from which you can extract all the necessary ingredients. Success is an attitude. Get yours right. It is astonishing how short a time it takes for wonderful things to happen.
Now show us your rainbow.