MARCH 2003


   Bill Turpin reports that the annual roaming, revolving USMA’59 Beat Navy Party, although sadly failing in its goal, accomplished the group condolences that have become routine in recent years.  Frank & Elaine Besson hosted the event at their country place near Hume, VA, where they grow Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes that are processed by the local Naked Mountain Vineyard and Winery.  Turpin liked it so much that he bought a case on the way home. 

    We can tell by the smiles in the accompanying photo that it was taken before the game.  Standing are Mike Faber, Mary & John Gurr, Bill & Ann Turpin, Frank Besson, Elaine & Bob Weekley, and John McNerney in his 47 year old b-robe.  Seated are Margie McNerney, Elaine Besson, and Bobbie & Bill Fitzgerald.

Navy Game party at the Bessons’

Glenn & Judy Dyer joined Lou & Judy Sullenberger for an M-1 mini-reunion in Taos, NM, last May and spent a long weekend exploring the area.  The accompanying photo (Sullenbergers on the left) shows them in the parlor of the old San Francisco Hotel in Cimarron, NM.  The Sullenbergers journeyed from Florida and the Dyers from El Paso, and Glenn said they had such a good time they may do it again this year.

Lou & Judy Sullenberger with Glenn & Judy Dyer

   Bill Pollock writes from Colorado Springs that the National Convention of The Retired Officer’s Association (TROA) was held there last October.  A highlight of the convention was the presentation of the coveted National Chapter of the Year award, which is presented to the chapter judged to be the best of all across the country and overseas.  The Pike’s Peak Chapter in Colorado Springs, the world’s largest chapter with over 3,000 members, won the award for 2001; and the chapter’s president for that year was our classmate, Vic Fernandez.  Good job, Vic!

Vic Fernandez receives the TROA best chapter award

    Andy & Lynn O’Meara are in Fredericksburg, VA, where they landed in April 2000 after some years in Saudi Arabia, where Andy worked on a contract training the Saudi National Guard; and in Muscat, Oman, where the accompanying photo was taken at the Marine Birthday Ball in the fall of 1999 while Andy worked for the USAF on a contract to maintain pre-positioned equipment in the region.  We here in the DC region are happy to have them back and look forward to seeing them at local soirees.

Andy & Lynn O’Meara

    Andy has kept busy here with his writing since his return, and has contributed several thoughtful and well-reasoned pieces on our internet site.  Two of his books were scheduled to be released last fall, Accidental Warrior and Only the Dead Came Home.  The first book is a memoir and the second is a fairly detailed look at Andy’s struggle with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).  Sales are available on the Internet through Barnes & Noble.

    Jim & Janet Turner are in Collierville, TN, near Memphis, where they have recently moved into a new home they had built.  Many of us can sympathize with Jim’s questioning the sanity of that decision because of the many headaches involved with dealing with contractors over a period of time. Jim also had to endure surgery on his left carotid to remove a blockage, and we’re thankful that it went well.

     Jim & Janet attended the A-2 mini reunion in Colorado Springs last June, a happy event that has been reported here before.  One for next year is being planned for California by Walt Wosicki.  Jim’s hopes are to pursue his interests in golf and reading, now that the house trauma is past; and he would like to spend more time visiting family, most of whom are out of town.  He hopes they can visit London and do the inside passage to Alaska, and as an avid fan of the Kansas City Chiefs would like to see a live game in Arrowhead Stadium in K.C.

     Don & Hazel Tillar are still in Williamsburg, VA, and enjoy being part of a foursome of classmates that includes Tex & Caroline Turner, Bill & Marlene Burleson, and Harry & Illa Walters.  Bob Howe lives just across the York River in Gloucester Point, and they see him from time to time.  Don says he used to be taller, an A-1 file now down to 6’2” after his hip replacement, deteriorating spine and fallen arches.  But they are enjoying the area and work during the summers at Busch Gardens; Hazel as a parking toll booth cashier, which she has done for the last seven years; and Don as a Rhine River Boat Captain.

      Don has a desire to be the oldest living grad to march on Diagonal Walk someday.  Short of that, he hopes to catch the largest striped bass on record in the York River; to attend the Honda Hoot in Nashville in June; and to join other crazy bikers like Pete Dawkins and Jerry Fogel at Bike Week in Daytona Beach this year.

      Dick & Sandy Toye are enjoying their 43rd year of marriage in Breckenridge, CO, where they live most of the year (they have a spring and fall condo in Alexandria, VA).  They are downhill ski addicts, but they enjoy cross country and show shoeing as well.  They travel, having been lately to South America and to their old haunts in Spain; and a trip to Australia and New Zealand is in the planning stage.  They are active in church and community affairs, and Dick is serving a ministry to their county jail inmates and translating for the Spanish speakers.  He likes clocks, has a collection of them, and designs and constructs various types of sundials.  He has a large model railroad in a 26’ by 13’ room designed for it when they built their house in Breckenridge.  The Toyes are in touch with Howard & Eileen Stiles and with Bob & Karen Croteau thanks to the week with the West Point ’59 International Ski Team in Breckenridge two years ago.

      Johnny & Kay Cox send the accompanying photo of the induction of Rocky Versace into the hall of heroes at USSOCOM.  Thanks for all you have done, Johnny, to keep us informed of the journey of Rocky’s MOH over the past months.

Johnny Cox, Mike Faber, and George Kleb flank tributes to Rocky Versace and Roger Donlon