Minuteman III Removed After 37 Years Of Academy Service. And this time it was not Charlie Beadling. Although he was contacted, he declined, stating that his previous efforts (although self-initiated with enthusiastic support from others) were not appreciated at the time. In fact, the Public Affairs announcement quotes "...since its dedication ceremony Dec. 9, 1971, the Minuteman III ICBM display has inspired thousands of cadets over the years..." The article does not elaborate that the missile, while still on a flatbed trailer, "inspired" a small slightly deranged cadre of stealth-doolies from the Class of 1975 to "remove" it before it was even erected. As Jim Carlson observes: The MMIII in front of the Field House started with us, and is joining us in retirement. Want to know the story from our beloved instigator himself? (Story via ZoomieNation Edition, Link Right).
Classmates. The scribe had a memorable summer that a few of our classmates have participated in over the years. I had the privilege of experiencing Philmont Scout Ranch with my 14-year-old son. One gets renewed faith in youth with Scouts. Located a couple hours south of the zoo, the scribe was also proud that his 55-year-old body still could backpack 70 miles in 11 days at altitudes up to 12,000 feet. Upon return, the scribe had the honor of a dinner visit from Chris Glaeser and wife Karen. Upon relating my Philmont story, Chris invited me on late summer fantastic-weather-day hike to Snow Lake in the Alpine Lakes area of Washington. Chris previously ran into Bobby Thompson in Seward, Alaska in late July. Bobby had just returned from a fishing trip, with his catch (!) on the sign behind us (not a good day). Bobby is a 747 captain for Northwest Airlines based in Anchorage, Alaska, still living in Frisco, Colorado when he's not with Northwest.
From Jim Carlson: Ben Bosma has garnered some high interest from TSA with regard to a consumer product that would make life easier for air travelers with laptops to get through airport security in minimum time. It works. (NY Times story here) I was asked by Ben to ops test his product on my way home from Dayton (for Dave Ehrhart’s retirement). The bag is a dual compartment carrier that splits apart (due to velcro fasteners at the bottom) for laying on the conveyor X-ray at the airport security checkpoint. When I did that, the security personnel remarked, “Oh, that’s one of those new laptop bags!” I told her I had just met with the inventor (Bosma) the day before and that I was wondering if security personnel would recognize it. She said they all knew about the bag and that it passed all TSA requirements – and makes it unnecessary to take one’s laptop out of a bag and put it in those plastic bins. She thought it was clever – and I thought I was pretty cool to have been hanging out with one of our amazingly gifted classmates (who by the way, is a MENSA member along with Mike Marro, CS-06). Please don’t take this as a commercial for Ben – I just consider myself privileged to be in such fine company (I still have this guilty feeling that the USAFA Registrar made a mistake when she called me, as one of the alternates, to report with the class on 5 July 1971. I hope they never do an audit).
From Jim Carlson: Here’s an illustration of how great you guys, my classmates, are: On my flight out of Reagan National on Thursday night, my flight was delayed from its 1745 flight several times until around 2045. At that point, they announced that the flight was canceled. Since it was an FAA cancellation, we were told there would be no compensation or room vouchers. I was rebooked for the first flight the next morning. I called a couple of classmates and eventually got hold of Marty Stytz (CS-11), our Webmaster. He looked up another classmate, Jerry Manthei (CS-01) whom I knew lived someplace near the airport. I called the number Marty gave me for Jerry, and he immediately offered to pick me up and have me crash at his apartment. Not only that, but he drove me to the airport at 0500 the next morning to make an 0600 departure. At Dayton, Fred Whitican offered to put me up during my stay, but I had already booked a hotel room. Dave’s retirement ceremony and dinner was stupendous (photos and full report soon). Dave and Chris Ehrhart hosted me at brunch at their house Saturday morning and Ben Bosma treated me to lunch that afternoon. Then Fred and Cheryl had me over for dinner and grilled some fine rainbow trout at their home chalet. I think all these guys have mistaken me for somebody else. This weekend has been great. The only problems were the flights in and out. On my way home from Dayton this morning at about 0620, the pilot announced that he was declaring an in-flight emergency and was turning back. Apparently, the nose gear failed to retract. We all did the “brace for impact” drill for the landing. A few hours later, I was on another airplane. Man, I’m glad to finally be back to my house, none the worse for wear and tear.
From Dave Clough to Ray Marden: We're glad we found you. It was great to talk to you over the phone after 35 years. We got a little catching up done, but there is more information available about your classmates through a number of sources. A contact list of our CS36 classmates is attached to this message. Email is probably the easiest way to re-establish contact, but I've always been able to talk to our classmates by phone after a few rounds of phone tag. You will be getting emails from me as your CS36 point of contact (POC) and from Keith Workman (CS-36/CS-35) and Chip Kerby (CS-07/CS-12) who are the POC and backup POC for '75 non-grad classmates. That Jim Carlson guy (our Class President) on the cc: list is single-handedly responsible for '75 being the most connected class in USAFA history. Marty Stytz runs the class web page. Paul Kent is the Class Scribe who publishes quarterly summaries of rumors, innuendo, arrests, convictions, releases on parole and other hot info in a column in the AOG (Association of Graduates) Contacts magazine, and the information is placed on our Class Page in ZoomieNation (Now Defunct) for all to see without being a member of the AOG. A good way to get up to date information on other grads, and to stay in touch, is by registering on ZoomieNation. From here on, it's up to you. Everyone participates as much or as little as they want. Expectations are zero, so anything you do will be welcome. I'll send our CS36 classmates the information which you provided. You said you always wondered what happened to the guys you knew at the Zoo. We always wondered about how you were doing, too. It's good to see that you thrived and have a loving family. Life can't get much better than that.
From Brian Barnes: Russ (Bryon C. Russell) is having fun planning to launch a rocket into space. I didn't know if you were aware if it or not, but it might be fun to put into the next Checkpoints. (Link to story, HERE)
From Jim Carlson: I had a great visit with two classmates last week during my business trip to Phoenix: Charlie “Head” Parsons and Dave Keene. Attached is a photo of the ’75 very-mini reunion. Charlie and I were in GUTS squadron during Basic and shared a lot of common memories. Along the way, Charlie felt it was time to pass the Geographic POC baton to Dave. So Dave is now my main point of contact for you Arizona classmates. I will be back for another two-day training event next month, and I hope to see you all, along with these two hosers again! I’ll pass Dave the details as the date gets closer.
From Paul Lotakis on October 25: Denny Mellen refused to become a GBNF, but it was close: According to what I heard from the chief pilot's office secretary, Denny was riding his bike on a trail somewhere in Bellevue, WA. He suffered a very serious heart attack and it was quite an effort to revive him. He was paddled numerous times before reviving him. Brought to Overlake Hospital, he was kept heavily sedated while he was "intubated". There are other details, but suffice it to say he is lucky to be alive. He is awake now and in good spirits. As of several days ago he was still in ICU.
Admin. From Jim Carlson: A number of classmates have already sent Bill Estelle (CS-22) their original photos and slides for scanning (Bill has an industrial strength scanner that does a fantastic job of digitizing). When you finally sort through your stored, dusty memories, and are ready to ship them to Bill, let me know and I'll send you instructions for mailing them either by US Postal Service or FedEx (each has a different delivery address for Bill). If a LOT of you respond, then I'd like to establish an alternate address to send them to, rather than to Bill (so as not to overwhelm our great class Archivist). Another classmate in the Springs has volunteered to be the receiving point if you guys really take this seriously. I'd like to see that happen. There's a reason I'm making a big deal about this – we're all getting on in age, and at some point, you guys won't remember if you even have boxes in storage at all! So before the will and the memories go, I'd like us to focus on this in the next 12 months and complete this project a year before the next reunion.
USAFA vs Navy. From Terry Young: Our own Larry Fariss (Falcon football co-captain during our senior year) was selected by the Academy football staff as one of the Honorary Co-Captains for the home game against Navy on October 08 at Falcon Stadium. This is a rare honor, intended to recognize former players who epitomize leadership, determination and team spirit both on the fields of friendly strife as cadets and in the demanding rigors of real world missions after graduation. In part, the selection letter states:
“We always talk about standing on the shoulders of those before us. There is no better way to display that than to bring in the men that are the foundation of Falcon Football. Their blood, their sweat and their sacrifice form the fabric of who we are today. These men are the standard of Falcon Football…”
Many of us have seen Larry Fariss in action during the past 37 years. You probably know Larry as a stellar officer, husband, father and friend. He is indeed worthy representative of our entire class. For icing on the cake, Larry's son JD (USAFA '01) is doing a C-17 flyover for the same game. As Larry said, "How cool is that?"
From Jim Burling: A couple of squadrons had mini reunions: CS-17 (Glaeser, Roberts, Mitchell and Volcheff) and CS-29 (Schwarz, Udall, Ashcraft, Berlan, Huffman, Fong, Wells, Davis, Barbera and AOC Hovasta – staying at the Antlers Hilton downtown). Other responses: Bill and Judy Murray, Mike Matte, Chappie Hargrove, Nark Narkiewicz’s wife Faith and friend (but not Nark!). Other airline pilot classmates are threatening to come also. Additionally, the normal Colorado crowd: Mickey Clemons, Dick & Denise Dye, Bruce Fritzsche, John & Becky Gaughan, Brian & Jan Duffy, Trayls & Carole Traylor, Pete & Cindy Krogh, too many to name, etc., but not Scott Hente, recovering from knee surgery. Tailgate: In discussions with Mark Wells our lone active duty officer at USAFA, we decided the best option for tailgate is the big white Pride tent on the east side of the stadium. This is where we had our pregame tailgate for the last reunion. It cuts down on logistics, so nothing to bring. Meal catered by Slaytons Barbecue of the Springs, beer usually by Budweiser. This tent was sponsored by the Quarterback clubs of Den and COS, but now is sponsored by the Academy Athletic Dept and is called the Pride Club. Rally point: During the tailgate (11:30 to 2:00) and depending on weather, we will set up a Class of ‘75 rally point on a couple tables just outside the tent. Look for the congregation of Class of ‘75 football jerseys. This provides a focal point for renewing ‘75 acquaintances before we scatter in the stadium. Looks like we’ll have 30-35 classmates and spouses/friends. Remember to look for the honorary captain, classmate Larry Fariss, and for the football Team Officer Rep, Col Mark Wells (in uniform) on the sidelines.
From Chris Glaeser: Enjoy the photo from the Stalag 17 party after the Navy game. Mark Volcheff hosted this event at his house just south of the academy after the close loss to Navy (27-33). Spence flew in from Memphis (his wife Diana was not able to make it, but he FedEx'd a big box of fresh Alaskan king crabs......note T shirt)!, and Karen and I from Seattle. Everybody else lives in Colorado Springs except the Sprenkles, who are in S. Denver. A really great evening that ended way too soon.
GBNF. From Burr (Jim Burling): Bruce Fritzsche’s wife, Nancy, passed away after a short illness. Nancy was diagnosed with a Grade IV glioblastoma (glee-o-blast-toma) tumor located in the left temporal lobe. This type of tumor is the fastest growing. But even her neurologists were amazed at how quickly it spread. She died with Bruce and their children at her side: Adrienne (27, a physical therapist in Milwaukee), Annette (24, an instrumental music teacher near Vail), and Boyd (a brand new 2nd lieutenant who just left to begin his training as a hospital administrator). Nancy’s mother, brother and sister-in-law from California made a quick trip from California. And of course, Bruce’s brother, Mark (Class of '77) and family, were there for support, also. Nancy was a wonderful, joyful lady who never said an unkind word. She was the kind of person loved by everyone she met, a favorite of ALL the kids at our local high school where she worked. Our entire class knows Bruce and his indomitable spirit, but she made him an even better person! In fact, she made everyone she touched better. Bruce has requested no phone calls at this time, but if you feel comfortable writing them a message, their e-mail and postal addresses are below. More than anything during this time of transition, they need your thoughts and prayers. They are a very faith-filled family, and know the power of prayer will carry them through.
Larry W. Bryant adds: Nancy was a constant presence and volunteer at our local Lewis-Palmer High School where their children had attended. Their son, Boyd, (who just graduated from USAFA in May) and two daughters, were with her. The entire Monument community is in shock and mourning. From Collin Flynn: Charlie Nystrom (Class of ’75, CS-07) was struck and killed by a truck in Tucson while riding home from work on his bike. Very sad for his family, his students, our community and our class. Scott Hente noted on August 19th: Kind of a lousy day for '75. Chuck's service as well as the funeral for Bruce Fritzche's wife, Nancy, are both this afternoon.