Roy Rice: I’ve attached a picture taken Sunday, 23 Mar 14, at the conclusion of the Alabama State Racquetball Championships in Birmingham. Jim “Lucky” Corrigan (on the right in the photo…he’s the one with the gray hair, reading glasses, and exhausted look on his face) and his son, Jake, competed in several divisions. Lucky won the “60-and-over” Singles Division; he and Jake won both the Open Doubles Division and the Elite Doubles Division. They played about a dozen matches in the two-day tournament. Congratulations to the new State Champions!
Tim O’Connell: Well I found something to do in retirement: I volunteered at the local (Divide, CO) Fire and Rescue Department. I was willing to help with mountainous rescue methods (going down cliffs to recover drivers and passengers, hikers, etc.) However, due to the recent fires (Hayman, Waldo Canyon, and Black Forest) everyone in the department must be qualified in wildland fire fighting. I went all in. After two months of study, I had to complete a demonstration evaluation (aka checkride). We started at 7 and finished after 1. Very physical: cutting fire lines, extended hose lays up hills, carrying packs, etc. While the ink on my certificate was drying, my trainer and I were getting into the truck to return to Divide when a call came in. There was a wild fire between Woodland Park and Deckers in the regrowth of the old Hayman Fire area. With six hours of simulated fire fighting behind me that day, I was in the middle of the real deal. By nightfall we had it out. Only 8-9 acres were lost and we stopped it from crossing over the hills. Now if I could get that smell of campfire out of my head and lungs! I will never go back to a desk job!
Paul Kent visited with Chris Glaeser as he was out Seattle way prepping his house (a rental for the last few years from his days at Alaska Airlines) for sale. Also had a nice visit with Jim Kochevar (American, formerly US Air) on a long layover here; we took a drive to our old neighborhoods from our days at McChord AFB. Here’s Chris’ version of the story, along with some other tidbits: I was in Seattle last week and had a beer and dinner with Paul Kent; left the bar with a severe case of "bucket list envy”: He is heading to Machu Pichu with his daughter in June as the culmination of her college graduation trip.
I talked to Tim Murphy who moved to DC with Jan last year. He is doing some consulting and was making arrangements for an airline security seminar the week before Easter. Tom Fraley reported that his wife Michele has retired from the US Army and they have both retired to San Juan. Tom says that he hopes the only ice he sees in the future is in a cold drink! Michele is now the Special Assistant to the Superintendent of the Puerto Rico Police Department and I'm sure Tom is enjoying island life to the fullest. Chris also noted, via LinkedIn, that Steve Pittoti is Deputy Assistant Commissioner, Office of Technology Innovation and Acquisition at U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and Mark Volcheff joined the Board of Advisors at ConcealFab Corp.
Bill Murray: I had a surprise in 767 Recurrent Training today. One of my students was Dave Johnson from our class! I really didn’t know Dave when we were at USAFA, but apparently he was Wayne Willis’ roommate! He flew C-141s in the AF and then transitioned to the Reserves where he retired. For the last 27 years he’s been with American Airlines, since 1992 he’s flown the 767 where he is a Captain now. He lives in NJ, flies out of JFK.
Bill continues: I had the pleasure of playing 18 holes of golf with Wayne Willis, who was on a layover in Dallas as a Delta 737 first officer. Besides being our premier center in the day, he swings a mean golf club with his new Titleist irons! I caught up on his four children and ten grandchildren. I had forgotten that Amy was first cousins with Mitt Romney! Wish he would have been our President! Anyway, if you're ever in Dallas, please drop by to see us...I have a hectic schedule working for American Airlines, but we’ll make it work. Late entry: Bill reported the passing of Bob Forbes, a JuCo classmate, on Easter Sunday—details to follow.
Your scribe attended Harry Mathis’ retirement on 3-4 April at WPAFB, along with Bill Murray and Chip Kerby (JuCo), who was Harry’s doolie roommate. It was quite a moving event with family, friends, associates, and classmates from the 39 years since our graduation. Gen Janet Wolfenbarger (Eighty’s Ladies) presided and gave a detailed speech highlighting Harry’s career and accomplishments. Harry and Sherry will be staying in the Dayton area where he is pastoring a local church. (Gallery Below)
Following Harry’s retirement, YHS spent half the day at the Air Force Museum, then met Sandy Terry and Jeff Hess (77 USAFA JuCo) for dinner and to catch up. Sandy admitted to having a “car problem”: I think he counted 48 cars he has owned since 1975. This could be another class competition, now that Last Man Standing is in the bag.
John Charlton reported that the DC Dark Ages Party was a great event, attended by 35 classmates and spouses, on (of course) the 75th day of the year. John gave credit to Andy Dichter for heading up the planning and execution, but we all know things like that require a great team effort. Thanks guys!
Rumor has it that Bentley Rayburn is running for Congress again, in the Colorado 5th District. Good luck, Bentley–third time is a charm!
While we’re on the political beat, Class Prez Jim Carlson recently raised the possibility that we might want to consider getting a new Class President. He has been very busy, as anyone would be with twins in the house, business travel, etc., and does not feel that he is living up to the duties of Class President. I told him not to be so hard on himself–his family is Priority 1, and we’re all big boys and while we love hearing from one another, we’ll hang in there just fine. Rather than replace our President for Life, one suggestion I heard was to elect/appoint/volunteer a Vice President who would do the grunt work while the Prez slogs through Parenthood Part Deux. Any thoughts on the matter are welcome, as are volunteers–send them to your Class Scribe and/or Jim via email. This could be an agenda item for our reunion committee next year.
Thanks to all of you who send your updates and pictures–they make this job interesting and fun. hope to hear from The Silent Majority sometime soon. Until next time, keep the shiny side up!