December 2021          Foster Bitton

GBNF: Joe Kahiapo, CS-38, George Martin, CS-10, and Bill Young, CS-13.  Their obituaries, and classmate memories can be found via links, right.

Those who sent in inputs will notice they’ve been pared down. That’s because the inputs greatly exceeded Checkpoints’ limits on words and photos.

Accomplishments: Chris Glaeser received the EAA-SETP "Spirit of Flight" award at this summer's AirVenture Oshkosh airshow.

 “Vito” Goyden was selected as a Colorado Technical University Distinguished Faculty of the Year award for 2021. He teaches online to students around the country and military deployed overseas.

Marty Miller honchoed the three-day 2021 Great Bend Airfest, which featured the U.S. Army Golden Knights Parachute Demonstration Team, the Shockwave Jet Truck, and a plethora of flying acts. Great Bend is 40 miles from the nearest interstate highway and has a population of about 15,000, but the airshow attracted a record-breaking 10,000 spectators.

Duane Lodrige was the legacy speaker at the Class of 2025 Acceptance Day Parade on August 6th. During the event a group of ten 75’ers gave specially signed contrails to the BCT distinguished graduates.

Friends and Family: Rick Benbow joined Steve Marino and a few other 75ers for the annual Commander's Cup Golf Tournament, a competition between graduates of USMA, USNA and USAFA held each summer at Westfield Golf Club in Clifton, Virginia. Army came in two places ahead of last, and USAFA came in two places behind first.

JJ Quattrocki, Tim Murphy, and Rick Benbow have started a quarterly luncheon in northern Virginia. According to Rick it’s just three friends talking about former careers, places they’ve been, and things they’ve done. The lunches last about three hours, or until the waiters start looking at them for occupying a table and not ordering anything for too long.

Larry Bryant promoted his son Garrett (2012 grad), to major at Fairchild AFB. Then the two of them had a “joy ride” in a B-25 Mitchell. Larry reported that it was a great view from the nose-gunner seat, but no one was shooting back.

Don Henney survived a serious bout with COVID in the fall of 2020 and hung up his spurs in March 2021 after close to fifty years of federal service. He’s now working on his bucket list, which includes time with his sons, and a lot of traveling.

Jim Marshall’s son, Colin, assumed command of the 86th Fighter Weapons Squadron at Hill AFB on May 23rd. Jim spent a week there attending the festivities, which included a roof stomp. Colin’s wife didn’t feel like cooking for a lot of roof stomping “gentlemen” so she hired a taco truck. Take note, it worked out great. Ironically, Colin’s squadron is the same unit Jim separated from in 1989.

Classmates Gone Astray: Dave White confesses to being one of those sad cases that can't (won’t) retire yet. He’s been flying for Wheels Up Private Jets since retiring from United. On days off he flies with the Texins Flying Club and Texas Soaring Association. He and Mary Ann did find time to take a cruise from Malta to Athens and the Greek islands, during which he learned a lot of history and only gained 2 pounds. Now he just needs to find one of those groups that start the meetings with, “My name is Dave, and I’m a workaholic.”

Remember the heat wave in Seattle last June? Paul Kent went golfing up there with three Navy guys on June 28th when it was 109°F, and they walked the course! Paul notes, “By about number 15 we agreed we were, indeed, not the smartest of people.” Avast me matey, that’s what happens when you hang out with the Navy.

Mini-reunions: The CS-09 Niners and the CS-16 Chickenhawks held mini-reunions this quarter. Different times and different places, but the reports of events sounded eerily similar, i.e., lots of eating, drinking beverages of choice, war stories, rinse and repeat. Further details are as follows:

The Niners’ reunion was in Colorado Springs and included visits to the Cadet Area, the Cemetery, and the Golden Bee gastropub at The Broadmoor. They also played a couple of rounds at Eisenhower Golf Club and graciously allowed non-Niners Mark Volcheff and Tug McGraw to join them in an attempt to lower the squadron’s orbital handicap. Attendees included Bob and Vickie Morrison, Ollie Lorenz, Dave Haugen, Paul and Kathy Williams, Tom Popp, Dale and Linda Meyerrose, Dave and Barb Commons, Kent and Carole Traylor, Jeff and Chris Hackett, and Brian Gomes.

The Chickenhawks’ reunion was in Las Vegas. Attendees were David Beeman, Kurt and Carol Bock, Joe and Barbara Bryant, Larry Dowling, Rod and Vicki Kallman, Tim Turnbull, Steve Watson, and Frank and Kjersti Wyatt. Highlights included watching the Falcons defeat Wyoming, making fun of Joe for having a rental car that made golf carts look roomy, and presenting Rod a "special award" after he told a story of his unique relationship over the years with one of our Commandants—whose father’s name is on a dormitory at USAFA. Details weren’t available for Checkpoints, but Rod will be happy to retell the story to anyone who asks for it.

If you don’t see your photo submission here, chances are it’s on 75bestalive.org.

 


Duane Lodrige speaking at the
Class of 2025 Acceptance Parade

 


Larry & Garrett Bryant, & Grumpy

 


Don & Debbie Henney & family

 


Jim & Colin Marshall

 


Jim & Kathy Marshall with their grandson

 


Niners' Mini-Reunion
Bob & Vickie Morrison, Ollie Lorenz, Dave Haugen, Paul & Kathy Williams, Tom Popp, Dale & Linda Meyerrose, Dave & Barb Commons, Kent & Carole Traylor, Jeff & Chris Hackett, & Brian Gomes

 


Chickenhawks' Mini-Reunion
Joe Bryant, Kurt Bock, David Beeman, Larry Dowling, Frank Wyatt, Tim Turnbull, Steve Watson, & Rod Kallman


Checkpoints Plus


Jim (Tony) MahoneyCyndy and I spent September in Europe. Started in Paris - 5 days to acclimate the body clock, then back-to-back river cruises of 7 days on the Rhine and 9 days on the Rhine and Mosel. Trying to make up for the lost years. Weather was awesome and on both cruises the staff out-numbered the guests. Returned home in time to get Betsy into the Mecum Auction. She has been a family member for 40 years and frequently provided pilot transport to/from the Officer’s Clubs at Langley, Holloman and Nellis. I seem to recall that 11 green bags was the record load-out. Lots more room in the garage now in case we get a second Tesla.

Stan (Chumley) CollinsHere’s a pic of yours truly showing off our class crest near Bob Hope Park while on a short getaway to San Diego in July. Our “beach low level light” had been on for a while....San Diego is a nice way to extinguish it!

Joe RogersJohn Charlton and I met in the gate area at O’Hare Airport in Chicago one July day in 1971. We were on our way to Denver. Our destination – the Air Force Academy – was the common factor that brought together a Michigander and this small town South Carolinian. Without any real formal agreement we became travel partners, so that when we got to Denver we naturally tried to find a way to the Academy together. I don’t remember why we didn’t find the Academy people gathering up the incoming (soon to be) doolies, but thinking we were late or had missed a bus or something, we took a taxi from the airport to the Academy. The taxi engine overheated on the way there and it looked like we might not get there at all. When we got there the bill was more than I could pay half of with the money I had brought with me for traveling. Fortunately John had enough to cover us and I promised to somehow find him and pay him back.

We got separated and went through the head shaving, uniform issuing process, but when the dust settled we somehow wound up in the same BCT squadron – GUTS. In fact, in formation we were only a couple of people apart. When the summer was over and we moved across the Terrazzo, he and I discovered we were roommates with Mickey Clemmons. This chance meeting and shared experience of BCT and first semester rooming together formed a lifetime friendship which, even though I left the Academy in the summer of ’72, has remained strong. It's been 50 plus years since we met and our careers went in two entirely different directions, but when we do have the rare opportunity to meet it feels to me as if we had just seen each other a few days ago.


Jim Mahoney & Betsy


Stan Collins in Bob Hope Park, San Diego


Joe Rogers & John Charlton

 

 

 

 


Checkpoints Extras


Air Garden Dedication



The restored Air Garden was dedicated on 23 October 2021, with Larry Fariss representing the Class of 1975 as the lead class on the project. Video below shows Larry's speech, the ribbon-cutting ceremony, and his post-ceremony interview. Video courtesy of the Association of Graduates. For a more comprehensive treatment of the Air Garden, see the History page, HERE.



Association of Graduates Class Advisory Senate


 


Minutes

We had a jam-packed agenda at tonight's CAS meeting, and a lot of discussion. An unusual amount of good news. I'm going to need some time to prepare a good summary to disseminate for the whole class through our squadron reps (hopefully this week)–especially the major points–but here are the headlines, FYSA.

Good news:

a.  All classes who have completed their reunions this fall reported great results and great events and were ebullient in their praise for the ways things turned out. Good harbinger, I'd say.

b.  The AOG is reorganizing and details will follow; Mark Hille is new president of both the USAFA Foundation and the AOG. The open EVP position has received about 20 graduate applicants and target for final selection is in the Thanksgiving timeframe. A significant amount of staff/function integration is continuing to unfold. There may be some new senior AOG staff positions open to graduates after the EVP is selected.  

c.  The AOG board meets this week (along with Corona Conf, Foundation Board Meeting, etc, etc)...so it is a very busy time.

d.  The AOG board will be launching "membership for all grads" in January 2022. There are details that need to be carefully explained...both by me (at this point in time) as a precis to the class, and then formally by the AOG at the launch date next year. This has been a long time coming and we all need to make the best of an opportunity to "re-start" a more engaged graduate community, as best possible.

e.  Class of 2025 is doing pretty well so far (details provided by vice Commandant, to follow in upcoming e-mail from me).

f.  Direct engagement and feedback between graduates and the Supt continues on a routine basis, after the big incidents in the news earlier this year...fostered by the relay of grad inputs by the AOG Chair direct to the Supt. This is a good thing; we ('75) had a part in making this happen...hopefully it will lead to better, routine situational awareness.

g.  Lessons learned from cadet honor program probation process has demonstrated value to the point that some techniques are being used to help train all cadets in a true understanding of honorable living, and training thereto (as a substitute to past "training" techniques which may have been less effective). 

h.  New tribute to airpower (down near North Gate/B-52 static display) has been dedicated and is recommended as a place for grads to visit.

i.  Cadets (across the board) are in better physical condition (given various metrics) than in history of the Academy–metrics cited by the Vice Commandant.

Not the best news, but news:

a.  Mark Volcheff, on behalf of the AOG board, is still looking for more volunteers to serve on AOG board committees and perhaps volunteering and/or positioning themselves to serve on future boards. Contact Mark if you are interested or know of a classmate who is interested.

b.  No direct feedback received from anybody (nothing reported at the meeting) to address the "teaching CRT at the AF Academy" WASHPO OpEd incident of the early summer.

More complete details to follow, as soon as possible...

Best Regards,
Bruce Mitchell
'75 AOG CAS Representative

 

 

Album


 

1. Greg Berlan (Right) with high school friend Tony Welsh prior to their 50th reunion. (October 2021)

2. John Kambourian: What can I say!! Precious!! (October 2021)

3. Kent Traylor and his entourage at the Cul-de-sac Homecoming 2021. (October 2021)

4. Bill & Kathleen Spencer at Inspiration Point (Wawona Tunnel View), Yosemite National Park. (October 2021)

 


 

 

5. Dave & Patti Ruddock at Zion National Park. (October 2021)

6. Don Byers & daugher Jennifer Lawton. (October 2021)

7. Bob Hickcox & Marge Terhaar hiking along the Blue Ridge Parkway. (October 2021)

8. Al & Dan Morrison with their trophy. (October 2021)

 


 

 

9. Michael Anderson with granddaughter Bree. (October 2021)

10. Bob Hickcox: Had the privilege and joy of having the granddaughters overnight for Teacher Work Day. I made pumpkin spice pancakes for breakfast. We then went to Jean's for pumpkins, farm play, and ice cream. (October 2021)

11. Billy & Wendy Bishop Stephan with family. (Travis Stephan, October 2021)

12. Fred Tasker celebrating. (Debra Bicknell Tasker, October 2011)

 


 

 

13. The Class of '75 at the Air Force-Army game, November 5th. (Bill Murray, November 2021)

Back Row: John & Becky Gaughan, Bill Murray, Jim Burling, Leon Smith-Harrison.
Front Row: Terry Young, Bill Hughes, Mike Matte, Wayne Willis, Larry Fariss.

14. Mark & Mary Volcheff at the Air Force-Army game with General Milley. (Mary Dwyer Volcheff, November 2021)

15. Mark Risi: Today is a day to celebrate. I just finished my last treatment for prostate cancer at the Anchorage Radiation Therapy Center (ARTC). The professionals at ARTC were fantastic. I could not have asked for better care. The ladies at the front desk, the nurses, the radiation therapists, and the doctors were always friendly and positive. For all my male friends, make sure to get your PSA checked. I also want to thank all my friends who were praying for me during this time. Your prayers helped me get thru the last six weeks. (November 2021)

16. Ben & Gini Bosma plus two trolling at Aullwood. (November 2021)

 


 

 

17. In honor of Veteran's Day, Kurt Bock created this poster, honoring veterans and the Class of 1975.

18. Buck & Suzanne Rogers in Houston with friends Paul & Cindy. (December 2021)

19. Chef Bob Hickcox with his sous-chef, making holiday lefse. (December 2021)

20. Mickey & Jeannine Clemons with family (Jeannine Clemons, December 2021)

 


 

 

21. Mike Marro & Carol Macha enjoying a European Christmas. (Carol Macha, December 2021)

22. Bob Walden (Right) with other members of the Full Throttle Formation Team at the ICAS2021 convention. (December 2021)

23. Bruce Fritzsche presiding over the Wreaths Across America ceremony at the USAFA Cemetary on December 18, 2021. (Association of Graduates, December 2021)

24. Jim Marshall with the newest member of his extended family. (Kelly Vannoy, December 2021)

 


 

 

25. Jim Hartney getting a dunk assist from his young teammate, A.K.A. his granddaughter (December 2021)

26. Greg & Peggy Berlan with family at a preschool Christmas performance. (December 2021)

27. Stan Jones: I landed in Centennial today ans was met by an FAA inspector. (December 2021)

28. Ben Bosma: Spent the day with a loaner. (December 2021)

 


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