Guest Scribe Jeff Hackett
In the greatest traditions of English 430 I have put this writing endeavor off to the last possible moment and now sit here frantically compiling, composing and typing all at once.
The procrastination was in part for selfish reasons: it allowed me to put off the sad task of passing on the news of Kerry Putt’s death this past October during a T-38 training mission at Williams AFB. I’m certain the whole class joins me in wishing Celeste and the rest of Kerry’s family our collective condolences. From the Com Sci lab to UPT and on to MacDill and Spain, everyone who got to know Kerry felt the impact of his very special abilities as an officer and a man. The Class of ’75 does indeed feel proud that he was…and is…a part of us.
Unfinished Business: (Item 1) As income tax time approaches surely everyone in the class can part with a few dollars for the class crest. I understand we’re fairly close to “meeting the mission” on this one, so give yourself the satisfaction of knowing you put us over the top. By the way, as one who gets to see the crest often, it’s really “Sierra Hotel.” Checks or money orders to Steve Pitotti or Rick Layman please. (Item 2) This class column will never be admissible in a court of law until some people get off their keisters and write; as of now it’s mostly based on hearsay and rumors (see last part of column). Defend yourself from slander! Drop Rick a postcard and let him know what you’re really doing.
Hey You, Mister! We’ve finally reached the point where some of our classmates have opted for charcoal grey rather than blue suits. Mickey Clemons is with Martin Marietta up in Denver; Tom Page is giving away money at a bank in Emporia, Kansas; and Lenny Slavering is playing professional soccer with the San Francisco team of the indoor league. Part-time civilians (full-time students) include Jon Turner who finally got that slot at Stanford (follow-on to USAFA); Bill Buchta is in his first year of Med School at the University of Wisconsin and doing great; the AOG also got a change-of-address card from Kim Schwartz to Palo Alto, CA. We’ll just assume that means higher education for him too.
Professionals and Fast Burners: Bill Lyerly fits in this category and the last one too. Bill and his wife are in Kenya where he’s an Army doctor doing research on tropical diseases; Bill Caskey is helping people get to sleep at Wilford Hall where he’s a resident in anesthesiology; just out of law school and into the JAG office are Rich Bowers (Hurlburt AFB) and Doug Williams (George AFB). You can add Brad McAllister and Dave Commons to the list of 75ers with stars in their eyes, both on their way to ASTRA assignments.
Fast Movers: New or moved zoomers and boomers include Bobby Thompson (F-4G, George), Tom Calhoun (RF-4 IP, Shaw AFB), and Buck Rogers (DRCPB F-5 Aggressor, Clark AB).
F-4s: Lance Grace, Jamie Blissit and Marinus Bosma (Homestead AFB), Todd Zedjlik (Clark AB. NOTE: Glad to see there’s a younger and larger Zedjlik playing defense for USAFA hockey these days), and Julius Hargrove (?).
F-106s: Bruce Fritsche (from Castle AFB to Griffiss AFB sometime this summer. NOTE: Bruce likes to make “big moves” in the summer, he got married last May), and Jim Michelini (from Castle AFB to K. I. Sawyer AFB).
F-111s: Dave Fleming (Cannon AFB. NOTE: UPT made a pilot and an expectant father out of Dave), Marlo Mellum (Upper Heyford), and Jeff Prater (?).
F-15s: Kent Traylor (Kadena), Doug Fraser and Mark Beesley (IPs at Luke AFB), Jed VanDendries (Holloman AFB), John Daily (?), Rick Pyatt (Langley AFB), John Oleksey (Bitburg AB) and Cary Niehans (?).
A-10s: Dave Schmitz (IP at Davis-Monthan AFB), Tom Popp (Myrtle Beach AFB), Dick Park, Randy Chapman and Ollie Lorenz (Bentwaters AB).
F-16s: Charlie Simmons (MacDill AFB) and Jim Corrigan (?).
T-33s: Bob Turner (McChord AFB), Hoss Erving and Wayne Willis (here at Peterson) and Brent Hall (Keflavik AB. NOTE: If you’re thinking of “seven-day options” talk to Brent).
Big Movers: Not much news from the trash haulers. I saw Mark Donnelly at Norton AFB. He’d just returned from Australia and said something about nirvana. Larry Fariss, Jeff Graves and Stan Collins are flying C-130s at Dyess AFB these days and Joe Marksteiner is on his way to the student squadron at Little Rock AFB.
Peacekeepers: Had a super time last weekend when Chuck Holland came to visit from Ellsworth AFB. Chuck is the fearless leader of a B-52 crew that includes Mark Posthumus. Let there be no confusion, Mike Anderson is really stationed at Castle AFB as a CCTS Instructor; he just spends a lot of time in Hawaii. Mike Reese (B-52) has left Fairchild AFB for balmy days on Guam and Terry Young is in missiles now at F. E. Warren AFB.
Fear, Ridicule and Insult: ATC’s finest include Bob Allen and Mark Isabelle who are back at Willy in T-38s and (good deal of the year) Brian Gomes, who’s left the alert and snow of Loring AFB behind on his way to T-43s at Mather AFB. Four of our classmates are smashing bugs here in Colorado (T-41s, USAFA); Ken Smith, Dave Barnthouse, Scott Skinner and Greg Dunbar. On the other side of the coin, Pete Losi and Rich Wilson have just started UPT (Columbus AFB and Laughlin AFB).
Different Strokes: Paul Narzinski is working in the MX program out at Norton AFB. Willy Cosby is Ops Officer for the Recruiting Squadron in New York City (no he hasn’t got a Bronx accent yet). Dan Kraft is Assistant Basketball Coach here at USAFA and got a nice write-up in the paper for the hand he gave in USAFA’s victory over UNLV. J.P. Waller, Danny Burkett, Dickie Dye, Mike Heil and Ralph Rye are all on the Dean’s Team here. Mike is on a joint spouse tour; his wife is at the Chidlaw Building downtown. I’ve found what I hope is the real Air Force as the Assistant Chief of Soaring here; it is a great job! (and the cadet labor comes in handy for big projects around the house). The job is so laid back that Randy Roberts will join the office here in April after SOS.
Rumors: Danny Burkett suggested this section. The following info is based entirely on the grapevine. Kevin Donovan is a student at C.U. and working for Mountain Bell. Greg Sheridan is flying C-5s at Dover AFB, Dave Williamson may go back to T-33s at Castle AFB; Kurt Osterheld and Andy Dichter are going ASTRA. Finally, Rich Chanick received an “imaginative gift-giving award” for his wife’s birthday cake (actually the last one isn’t a rumor but you’ll have to ask him about it).
Well, that’s it. The best efforts of this quarter’s guest writer. Oh, by the way, send your complaints/suggestions to F.E. Warren, not USAFA…I ain’t the regular crew chief.