Gentlemen, there are over 7200 words in this lengthy “Checkpoints for ZoomieNation” post. The scribe has basically taken emails and cleaned them up a little. The scribe is the editor, for all practical purposes. A lot of what you read here are personal exchanges between our classmates that get forwarded to me, the scribe. What I include here I assume I am allowed to. If I have offended anybody or taken liberties that I shouldn’t have, it was not intentional. I just figured I’d do this scribe job as best I can. If I have taken too many liberties, or you have any suggestions, please let me know. There’s a lot here. You might consider this post a compendium of a newsgroup or forum exchange. It’s lengthy, I admit. But rather than omit much of anything, you speed-readers can scroll past what you like. Here goes:
ZoomieNation (Now Defunct) All the News that Fits. And that’s all the Class of 1975 gets in the printed “Checkpoints.” The printed column is limited to 1200 words and 3 pictures. Considering the growing number of alumni, that’s a reasonable request by the editor. The scribe has been able to beg for a little more in the past, and the request has always been graciously granted. Thanks to the power of electronic communication, the scribe now receives more than he can include in this column. Before he even started to edit this column, we had over 7300 words of Classmate news and input. Scribes of the past would have begged for any input from classmates to fill a “Checkpoints” column. Now we have to decide what gets included. This is where the scribe will post a full electronic version of this column, including photos.
Classmates. From Dave Wallace: My wife Jan and I spent two short years at Eielson AFB in Alaska; she as 354 Mission Support Group Commander, me as devoted spouse reliving my youth well beyond my own career. During this period, and completely unbeknownst to us, Alaska Congressman Don Young's Chief of Staff, 75's own Mike Anderson, made many business trips to the 49th state. We never saw him in Alaska, but did visit with him and his new bride at our epic 30th reunion. We know he was busy. On the day before Jan relinquished command–5 July 06, 35 short years to the DAY that we all started down our disparate military career paths–Mike paid Col Wallace an office call at Eielson. I was called in to referee. Jan was touched by Mike's gracious agreement to stay one more day, and he attended her change of command. Attached herein is photographic evidence that Mike was there. Jan's the one in BDUs.
Mike Anderson responds: I am indeed touched by my dear friend, classmate, and constituent's thoughtful email. He is entirely accurate in his account (especially the mention of reliving his youth well beyond his own career). As to my not paying he and his lovely wife (and also dear friend and AWC classmate) a visit when I was in their neck of the woods, I am reminded of an approved response we all learned during our rookie year at the zoo – "No excuse, sir." I suspect I should also include a "no excuse, ma'am" in this case! I must note that there is some humility and humbleness in my dear friends' email. What they have not mentioned is that they left a new high-water mark at Eielson AFB AND most notably in the Fairbanks region. Their wing CC had very good words for Jan and also for Dave. Just by watching the people there and their interaction with Jan and Dave – it was obvious that they made tremendous friends and had people who will love and miss them. Finally, I want to add that the community leaders I deal with and visited during that trip had nothing but the highest praise for Jan and Dave's leadership in the community. In their case, the Air Force and Eielson got a great deal – two for one! My thanks to the Wallaces for making my 4th of July trip a memorable one – and best wishes to them in Colorado – I hear the new house in Castle Rock is way kewl. I hope they remain the great Alaskan constituents that they are!
From Bill Murray: For those of you that remember Chaplain (USAF, Col, Ret) Merv Johnson, who was the head Chaplain at USAFA during our time, you will be saddened to know that he passed away at age 80 of prostate cancer. Chaplain Johnson was the thin Protest Chaplain with the deep voice.............He and his wife, Tootie, and their children have been close friends of Judy and mine over the years. He retired near Divide, CO and pastored a small church there for many years. He was always one with an encouraging word and sound advice. Mrs. Johnson is the Motherly type, who always took special care of me. Whenever I was restricted at USAFA (not very much, Ha!) she would invite me over to the Chaplain's residence (just west of the New Dorm on the hill), bake me chocolate chip cookies, and empathize with me about how mean the AOCs were! She was always there with an encouraging word and some much needed TLC! Pray for her and the family (three children) as they go through the ceremonies this week. Because Chaplain Johnson was not a USAFA Grad, he couldn't be buried in the USAFA cemetery, so he will be buried in a small cemetery near Divide. He is with the Lord now and receiving his ultimate reward for knowing and serving The Savior.
From Jim Burling: A lot of classmates are probably wondering how Bentley (Rayburn) did in the Colorado Republican Primary for the 5th District Congressional seat. Here is a rundown: It was a six-person Republican primary to fill a seat vacated by long-time (20 years) Congressman Joel Hefley with the many well-known Republican leaders vying for the spot. The winner would be the one that took the greatest percentage of votes on Primary Day; in other words, no primary run-off of the top two candidates, etc. Colorado State Senator Doug Lamborn won with 27% of the vote, with Jeff Crank second at 24% and Bentley came in third with 18%. Not bad for a guy that announced his candidacy on April 20 for an election on August 8, just 110 days to set up a staff, raise $$$ and get your name known. Even though he did not win, Bentley turned quite a few heads in Colorado Politics! Some notables: Soundly defeated current Colorado Springs Mayor Lionel Rivera, former El Paso County Sheriff John Anderson, and El Paso County Commissioner Duncan Bremer. Actually beat Lamborn at the polls on election day; Lamborn won due to absentee ballots gathered long before the final two weeks of the race.
In the final two weeks of the race, Bentley truly became the candidate of choice with many well-known civic leaders throwing their support his way. By being the last candidate to enter the race and by moving back to the district after the race had already started, name recognition was the challenge for the campaign to overcome. They had all of the momentum going their way but the folks who voted early with their absentee ballots did not have a chance to see and hear Bentley. Many laudatory letters in the local newspaper emphasized his integrity, consistent stance on issues, and leadership abilities. Most political analysts agree that if Bentley had another week to campaign, the result would have been different. Colorado Sen Wayne Allard congratulated him on a great race and encouraged him to remain active in Colorado politics. Our classmates can be proud of the team that Bentley assembled, primarily of our Colorado Class of '75 members: John Gaughan served as his campaign manager ("what a learning experience; worse than BCT!"); Tim and Jan Murphy; Phil and Chris Pearce; the JD Barrowcloughs; the Jim Ekens; and Bruce and Janice Mitchell. In the end, the result wasn't what Bentley wanted – but this was a huge accomplishment in a short time. Bentley represented himself, his family, the USAF and the class of '75 in fine fashion. He will definitely be a force in Colorado politics.
From Jim Carlson: 1. Many of you have asked me why I go through the effort of keeping our classmates connected with one another. I didn’t realize, until I read a news item, that there’s a direct benefit to me (and to each of us). According to the ABC news report, "...not having as many close confidants can affect both physical and mental health, such as a creating a higher risk for depression and high blood pressure, according to Redford Williams, who directed a study in 1992 on heart patients and their relationships." On a 20/20 broadcast on 6/23/06, it was announced that seeing 6 friends a month will de-stress you. So I guess I’m doing all this for my health. 2. If you have updated your biographical information at www.usafa.org, you can set up email forwarding from a permanent email address based on your site profile. 3. If you wish to contribute to our class fund, the address is below. This fund was created by our classmates (overseen by Scott Hente, our Treasurer) and intended for class-related expenses (such as flowers for widows of deceased classmates). So far, we’ve used portions of your donations to help our wounded classmate John Sims (BTW, one anonymous classmate sent in $1,000). We may also use the funds to enable a classmate who cannot attend our next reunion due to financial difficulties. It’s all voluntary. I send Scott $50 a year to put into the pot. If you can each afford to send 10 or 20 bucks for our class tokens of sympathy (flowers or help to our classmates and widows in emergencies, or when they depart the fix) it will be appreciated.
From Ed Sienkiewicz: I'm still on active duty here at Robins AFB, but will be retiring on 30 September after nerly 31 years and four months. I'm looking to apply for my job, which is being civilianized after I retire. (Chief, 19th Air Refueling Group Inspections Office, Robins AFB, GA)
From William Stewart: Just a quick note to say hi and let you know that we'll be changing our e-mail address at the end of the May.
From David Shields: I left WBT/SIL last August. For a while messages sent to the sil.org address got a reply with my new address but I guess that expired.
Maj Gen Stan Gorenc was recently appointed Air Force Chief of Safety, and Commander, Air Force Safety Center. He assumed his duties on 24 July 2006.
From Greg Schmitt: Probably the best one to use is my hotmail account. It's always working!
Steve (PeeWee) Barber called me after losing contact for a few years. It was great to hear from him. We’ve all been through a lot. It’s nice to catch up and reminisce.
From Chris Glaeser: Well, I retired for the second time in June, this time from NWA. Found a new job with Alaska Airlines in Seattle Vice President Safety for Alaska Airlines.
From Paul Lotakis: Thought I would pass this along. I was working a flight recently and as I got to know the first officer (older fellow), he began to speak of his UPT experiences as an IP. He wasn't a grad and I am not in the habit of wearing my ring, let alone knocking it on the throttles...so he didn't have a clue as to what my background was. He really didn't talk of anyone in particular...except one. He mentioned Tommy Hartwell as one of his favorite students and spent a fair amount of time talking about him. He caught me quiescent and misty-eyed. He was shocked to learn I was a classmate and knew him...then it was his "turn." Tommy, we hardly knew ye, but never forgotten...see you again at the 35th.
From Randy Caraway (re: Graduate Leadership Conference): '75ers at the 3rd Annual USAFA Graduate Leadership Conference: We had four of us ['75ers] there, including: Dave Ferguson, Dave LaFave, Bran McAllister, and myself. Rich Chanick came by for the Supt's reception. Overall, I thought the GLC was great. The new Supt is not new to the place and is putting into place the good things that existed in the past but got set aside by leadership in reaction to the stuff that went on there over the past four years. He indicated that (old Supt) Rosa's programs were taking hold and as a result would allow him and his staff to focus on the future, (budget, cadet schedule, facilities, etc). Still, the most impressive thing was, of course, the cadets, particularly the 1st Class. They are a group that has been "battle-hardened" by the last three years as well, and look to be strong experienced cadet leaders already. They are realistic and at the same time determined to make this year their best. At the AOG follow-up, in my conversations I got the impression that the rest of the group felt the same way. We had two '59er's and one each from 2001, 2002, 2003, so the participants spanned the whole history. In general, I'd say they liked what Supt Regni had to say and are very hopeful he is successful during his time. The AOG did a great job of putting on the event. The staff kept the schedule moving and kept us fed and such. We have all the growing pains of an alumni group like us and maybe we haven't got a real grip on what it is we are part of. Personally, I was glad to see the open discussions, and the candor. We still have some people with issues around the recent bylaws rewrite, but I think we are going to get those under control soon. One thing I was disappointed about was the fact that it seems that Mikey Wienstein can't seemed to be in town without getting some serious flak including death threats. I remember some of the stuff we had to deal with, and while he came later, it shows that more than a few people out there don't get what we (zoomies) are [all about]. Well, as the saying goes, "the more things change... " Again, real good conference. I hope to get to go to another soon.
From Jerry Manthei: Re: Jim Carlson note: I also still have my purple A-jacket – but I recently discovered that Jerry Manthei was Wing Logistics Officer at the time we had to turn them in, so I need to avoid him whenever I have it with me. Oh thanks, bust me on that one for not doing my job some thirty years ago!
From: Dennis Brooks: I am now in Albuquerque, NM. After my father passed away, we decided to get out of the humidity in the South.
From Max Della Pia: As you have probably surmised, I stepped down as commander of the 109th, on Saturday, 5 August. The following Monday, after the UTA (Unit Training Assembly), I reported for duty at the Joint Forces Headquarters in Latham, NY as the Executive Support Staff Officer. Never at a loss, I guess you figured the Commander of the New York Air National Guard, my boss, and our classmate Major General Bob Knauff, would know where I wandered off to. I am looking at some other career options, both inside and outside of the Guard.
From Chuck Woods: Karen said that yet another of your (Jim Carlson) requests/reminders had been mailed home. I've tried to respond in the past but couldn't quite get the hang of your email address. Hopefully you got this one. I'm looking forward to staying in touch with '75 class information, as some days I really feel like I'm on the other side of the planet. Hey, what am I saying?? I've been in Macau for five years, so that's precisely where I am. Anyway, thanks for your persistence, and let me know where to find class info.
From Ric Lewallen: In January, I joined an executive coaching firm. I really enjoy the work. Essentially, we work with business leaders to help them take a step back and figure out what they want to be doing, what they are doing, evaluate why those two are different, and then figure out what they want to do about it.
From Phil Gronseth (Director of Character Development, Science Department, USAF Academy Preparatory School): One of our own will be recognized next weekend so I thought I'd pass on the information to you in case you want to congratulate him. Al Morrison, my roommate in 24th and also on the hockey team, has been selected for induction into the AFA Hockey Hall of Fame. He will be out here the weekend of the Navy game for our annual alumni game and induction. Al and another graduate will be recognized between periods of the AFA-Colorado College game on Friday night, October 6th. To remind you of a few of Al’s hockey accomplishments: he is the only goalie in Air Force history to be a four year starter, he has the most saves in a career with 3270 and most in a series with 121 (in other words, the rest of us didn’t offer him much help at times!), to reinforce the previous records he also has most goals allowed in a season with 181 and most in a career with 480 (but don’t tell Al I told you these stats!). However, Al was also goalie for the two teams with the best won-loss records in Air Force history and is the only goalie to beat Colorado College three times. Some of you may remember our senior year when we beat CC at the Broadmoor 1-0 (they were #4 in the country) and beat them again a couple weeks later on our own ice 7-6 in OT (they were then #6 in the country). If you want to catch Al he is staying with me, and will be at the CC game Friday night and then the Navy game Saturday. He’ll probably sit with me most of the Navy game in the Prep School section in the southeast stands on about the 20 yard line. Al will also be at the alumni game, which is after the Navy game at 5:00, but won't play. He said he'll sit in the stands and watch us old and young guys try to relive our youth (Falcon flashback time!). If you are at any of these games stop by and congratulate a classmate who is getting some well-deserved recognition!
From Hugo Posey: My new contact info follows. Give me a holler! Hugo G. Posey, Vice President/Business Development Manager System and Network Solutions Group Science Applications International Corporation.
From RC (Dick) Park (Subject: Visit to the Academy, 28 Sep 2006): I am in Denver at a conference this week and set up a meeting with the cadets in CS-33. I spent the afternoon with several groups and also had dinner with them at Mitchell Hall. It was a great experience and much more laid back then at the reunion last year. I found out a few things that I did not know, so I thought I would pass them on. If you already knew all this, sorry: Cadets no longer do SERE at the Academy. All 40 squadrons are up and running. CS-33 is now located where CS-40 was when we were there. Dinner is a buffet and not mandatory. You can do a "touch and go" for dinner, that is, go through the line and fill up a to-go box and take it back to your room and eat it. More of the 4th Class system is back. They won't be recognized until just before spring break. I am not sure if there will be a hell week but they are going to do something. They went back to blowing whistles and kicking in doors during summer training. All the cadets were very appreciative of me for taking the time to speak with them and answer their questions. The cadet squadron commander indicated that she was very surprised (pleasantly) that I would take the time out of my schedule to come and be willing to help in any way I could. While I was there I tried to provide some insight into tradition and what it means to be able to look back. My personal opinion is that they don't understand that what they do reflects on all of us who came before. I know I didn't understand that while I was a cadet. Maybe if more of us made the visit one at a time we could promote that. Final points: (1) I think there is less air (oxygen) there now then when we were there. (2) Getting hooked up with the AOC and the cadets was very easy, so if your plans bring you close to C-Springs or Denver I strongly recommend taking the time to pay a visit. PS: The primary question I got for the four degrees was what we did for "spirit runs." If you have any ideas for them, pick up the phone and call the CQ and ask for the closest smack.
From Joe Kahiapo (Hawaii Earthquake): Thanks for asking about us. The family is doing well and unaffected by the earthquake, except for a 10-hour power outage, we consider ourselves lucky. I was enroute from Oakland to Maui when we got word of the earthquake. Most of the majors were diverting and canceling flights. We landed at Kahalui, Maui uneventfully. Our only inconvenience was when landing in Honolulu, we had to deplane by stairs onto the tarmac and walk into the terminal because the jetways were inoperable.
From Sam Hollins: Still trying to figure this page out [the ZoomieNation website]. It is really a neat concept and I find myself on it for hours searching the various paths. Note from scribe: Get a life, Sam. OK, just kidding, you’re our ZoomieNation Poster Grad.
Tough News. From Dan Burkett: My precious 22 year old son was killed in a boating accident. His funeral is 21 October.
Classmates and Health Issues. From Ralph Reed: I know it's early for a Christmas letter, but I've had a few changes this past year. Last December 27th, I transferred to the US Army Command and General Staff College at Ft. Leavenworth, KS. It's a pay raise in two ways – GS11 to GS12, and I'm not on furlough during the summer. The VA has been monitoring my PSA and has given me four prostate biopsies (pretty soon there's not going to be any left to biopsy). It's almost as much fun as a colonoscopy. But, each one has proven negative. WOOHOO. Finally, one truly marvelous thing is that my wife, Dorothy, is donating a kidney to a nephew on 3 October. It's been hanging for several months and it's finally going to happen. Light a candle or some incense and say a prayer for her and our nephew.
A 25 October 2006 update from Ralph Reed: My wife Dorothy donated her kidney to our nephew three weeks ago. Both are doing fine, in fact Dorothy started back to work Monday. Our nephew is doing great and says the kidney is working great. He said there's just two problems, he has to go to the bathroom a lot more often and it only seems to work when he sits down. Thanks for asking. Dorothy is taking it in stride as "anybody would have done that," when few truly have the strength to go through with a living organ donation.
From Dean Cox: Don Byers also had surgery recently. Seems he shattered a disc, pieces of which were impacting his spine and causing lower extremity paralysis. He is recovering out in California.
The Nark Colonoscopy Digest. From Mike (Nark) Narkiewicz: I just wanted to pass along a message to the class concerning health issues. If nobody has volunteered yet to be the poster child for colon cancer, sign me up. I went in for a colonoscopy last week because we are now at that age. The doctor removed two polyps, but also found a larger growth (1.5 inches across) he thought might be cancerous (biopsy confirmed this later). This info was delivered to me as I was waking up in the recovery room after the procedure. I was not coherent enough to ask any questions, beside the fact that I was completely stunned by the news. Being the typical uninformed doofus that I am, I thought I had just been handed a death sentence. When I got home I jumped on the internet to educate myself. Bad idea. I learned that if the growth had grown through the wall of the colon and invaded other tissue and organs, my chances were not good. Of course, one always envisions the worst case. I finally talked to my doctor and he put the proper perspective on the situation. The colonoscopy I had did exactly what it was supposed to do. Polyps that could become cancerous were found and removed (two), and what they termed a small growth was found early enough (I hope) in life to be able to remove it completely. The idea is to catch the cancerous growths before they break the outer surface of the colon. In two weeks I will get sliced and diced to remove approximately 1 foot of my colon containing the cancerous growth. Lymph nodes surrounding this area will also be removed for biopsy, and the general area will be inspected for any cancer. My doctor explained that given my age and the early discovery, I have an excellent chance of eliminating this cancer.
Now here is the rub. If I was conscientious and had checked for colon cancer when I was 50, I would have received the medical industry standard procedure for that time period, which was a sigmoidoscopy. A sigmoidoscopy only looks at the first third of the colon (descending colon). My cancer was located around the corner in the transverse colon. A sigmoidoscopy would not have discovered the growth. I would have walked out of there fat, dumb, and happy until getting a full colonoscopy at age 60. The cancer I have would have had seven more years to do its dirty deeds. In the last couple of years, the medical community has determined that a full colonoscopy is the preferred method to start screening. Attention in the area – if you have had a colonoscopy, good on you. If you have had only a sigmoidoscopy, get your butts down to the doctor and get a colonoscopy! Immediately. If you have not had any screening, follow the butt movement from the previous statement. Forget about your dislike of doctors and hospitals. A colonoscopy is the simplest medical procedure known to man. There is absolutely no pain of any kind. You will be knocked out, and you will have no memory of anything. You won't even remember the nurse's cruel weenie jokes. All the info above applies to friends and family members. If you have symptoms of colon cancer (blood in the stool, blockage) it is probably too late. Do not wait to get screened; remember, there is absolutely no reason anyone should die from colon cancer given the medical screening available today! Heed the words of a wise sage, "Git er done."
From Jim Carlson: Thanks Nark! I hope you get some good news and a quick recovery in 2 weeks. Folks, I’ve had this procedure done twice, when I was 45 and when I turned 50, and as Nark says, its painless and worth every precaution.
Jim Carlson continues: I just got off the phone with Stan Schoener (he and Nark were roommates for about 2 years). Stan spoke with Nark and says he's in pretty good spirits. Nark will go under the knife on 25 September. The surgeons will cut him from the sternum to his belly button. With his thorax splayed open, they will lift out his guts and cut out the 1-foot long portion that has the cancerous growth, and inspect the rest. They will also remove nearby affected lymph nodes. After he's stitched up, it will be about a week before they can release him. Let's keep him in our thoughts and prayers. This is one major operation. To reiterate Nark's public service announcement, get a full colonoscopy (not just a sphigmoidoscopy) if you haven't done so already. Schoener is scheduled for one in a couple of months. Mefford has had his last year I think, and I've had two exams (age 45 and 50). What you want to hear from the doctor is, "Smooth and pink walls". (BTW, Stan says he regrets having missed the reunion. He said that reading the emails about it and seeing the photos being passed around made up his mind to be there with us for the 35th!)
From RC Park: My wife and I had our first colonoscopies in 2003. Both were OK. My wife took the drugs and was knocked out. I took nothing and got to watch it all on a big TV screen. Certainly well worth the minimal discomfort for the peace of mind. For you retired guys, TriCare paid without a question for both myself and my wife. And afterwards the doctor gave us a "free pass" to fart in public for 24 hours. (Actually you are passing the air they blow into you so that they can get the scope around the corners.). Our thoughts and prayers are with Nark and his wife. I attached two pictures from the 30th reunion.
From Stan Schoener: I just got off the phone with Faith Narkiewicz. Mike had his surgery moved up from the 25th to the 22nd, and should be going home this Friday. The surgery went very well, and the doctor was very optimistic. The tumor that was removed was smaller than expected and, visually, the docs feel they got it all. The biopsy is expected back tomorrow. I'll call Mike and Faith Friday and get more info, and keep everyone updated. I'm doing great. Teaching Math seems to be what I was meant to do. I was going to major in math at the zoo, but someone (and I honestly can't remember who) talked me out of it. But teaching these kids math is a lot harder than flying in bad weather and losing an engine (but then again, we had four of them).
From Mike Narkiewicz (28 Sep 2006): Just got home from the hospital today. They removed 12" of colon and the pathology report was negative for cancer on the external tissue surrounding that area. Thank God for modern medicine. I just dodged a tactical nuke! Couple more weeks I should be good as new. From Mike Narkiewicz (Oct 2006): Yes, I can eat steak, plus anything else I want; however, it takes less time for it to travel the lonely road.
More Health Issue News From Jeff Hackett: For those that didn’t know my last trip to the dermatologist (later part of September) revealed a small melanoma on my check just in front of my left ear lobe. While there have been all sorts of things that dermatologist has burned off (with liquid Nitrogen) or done small excisions on over the years, this is first return of Melanoma since my initial diagnosis 22 years ago. Was referred to Mayo Clinic, Scottsdale; dermatologist there performed a Mohs excision (surgical procedure for skin cancer removal)about the size of and a little thicker than a silver dollar last Tuesday afternoon (17 October) leaving the wound open pending results of pathology. Remarkably little pain / discomfort with that except when they changed the dressing Friday YIKES!! Pathology report came back on Friday afternoon thankfully all clear. Closure and reconstructive surgery was originally scheduled for Monday afternoon at Mayo Hospital but, after they got the IV started in pre-op, my Head & Neck Surgeon got pulled into extended emergency surgery. He came in to say that he didn’t want me to be stuck in pre-op that long so he sent me home. Went back first thing yesterday morning (left the house at 5AM) and finally went into surgery about 8:30AM. I guess it was about a two-hour surgery. Anesthesiologist heard my concerns about previous problems with post-surgical nausea and gave me IV-only (no gas) which turned out great! Only problems I’ve had since coming home yesterday was a lot of achiness in shoulders and chest (I assume from how they had me positioned) – only had to take one or two pain pills and felt pretty good by this morning. Back to the doctor today for change in dressing. This bandage will stay on until Saturday morning and then I'll get sutures removed on Monday AM; back to work after I see the doctor. Chris, the dogs, and Hannah the bird have been taking good care of me as I've gone through this (in this picture Cassie, the ultimate mommy dog, was providing the care). Counting my blessings and hope you are too! Don’t forget to see your dermatologist.
Class Legacy Fund. From Russ Trinter: Hey, just a stream of consciousness from me...I got the letter from Duffy yesterday about the continued effort to reach the 750K goal. (Let's not forget) about corporate matching gifts... Most of us have it and it is a great way to get more money! Russ continues: And another idea I suggest planting in heads is what I did last time and that is to donate $1975. I think it's a way to influence behavior to try to get folks to commit to an amount that has a second meaning.