Class Poop

Send your input to Class Scribe - LTC Richard (Rick) D. Bunn (Retired) at
Visit the 1965 Class Notes Photo Album to see all the photos below full-size!

Class Notes First Quarter 2016

The COH Interviews of the Class of '65 - 1

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

With the Easter Bunny clearly seen in the rearview mirror, today seems like a good day to start the series, I promised, on the fascinating Classmate interviews archived in the Center for Oral History (COH). As mentioned earlier, I have chosen to present these in the order they were actually recorded. In the file provided by the Director, LTC David Siry, I found that the first three interviews took place on 10 September, 2005. There were two other interviews that day so going alphabetically, I will start with our fallen brother, John Alger. Here we see John on the day of the interview along with some of the information provided about him and the interview.

Simply put your curser over this link, hit “ctrl” and click to go directly to the interview. Then just sit back and enjoy. You might want to bring a cup of coffee as the interview is an hour and forty-two minutes long. Give the interview a little time to download, then click on the triangle at the left to start. If at any time you want to jump forward in the interview, just click anywhere along the bar at the bottom.

I hope you enjoyed this experience as much as I did. I find it fun to look back, especially at our cadet years, through the experiences of a Classmate.

Please let me know if you enjoy this exercise.

The Presentation of the Bob Arvin Letter to the OPE

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Back in the middle of October of last year, I shared a picture of a terrific letter that was sent by our own Bob Arvin to his high school wrestling team as an inspiration to do well in their upcoming competitions. You may recall that it was Tino Lambros (the driving force behind the Arvin Foundation), a good friend of Bob’s who kept that letter for 54 years and then donated it to Walt Oehrlein on behalf of our Class. Walt and your Leadership Team then took steps to have it encased in a frame and finally presented for permanent display in the Arvin Alcove.

On March 21st the official ceremony took place at West Point to present the letter to the USMA Office of Physical Education (OPE). The following is the official report of that ceremony provided by Paul Schultz:

Class Report on Bob Arvin Letter Presentation to
the USMA Office of Physical Education by the Class of 1965
During Bob Arvin’s hectic plebe year, he found time to write a letter to his high school wrestling team back in Ypsilanti, Michigan. The letter is a perfect example of Bob’s above and beyond leadership philosophy – especially in the opening paragraph:

“I just saw a perfect example of what a group of guys can do when they put their mind to it. We went against Navy with three of our starters out. It was a real thriller, but the guys just kept pushing and won 20-8 … I’ve been following you guys real closely this year and I know that you guys can go right to the finals and take State—if you give it all you have got…”

Bob’s letter was pinned to their workout board for the season, and the Ypsilante team did win the championship that year. The Class of ’65 was Honored to receive the donation of that letter from Bob Arvin’s brother David and Tino Lambros (Chairman of the Arvin Memorial Foundation). Both were on the team that went on to win the State Championship. This report covers the Ceremony on March 21st, where the Class of 1965 donated the letter to the USMA Office of Physical Education.

The members of the Class of 1965 met the Ypsilanti Group (Dave Arvin, Tino Lambros, and Ron Podolak) at the Hotel Thayer and we traveled as a group to the Arvin Alcove in the Gym where we met a large turnout from OPE headed by the Master of the Sword, Col Gist. The first 2 pictures below are members of the Class of 1965 and then the Ypsilante Group with Russ Campbell.

Photo Left: Class of 1965 Left to right: Mary Frank, Bob Frank, Russ Campbell, Maryann Campbell, Col Gist, Jose Sanchez, Gene Manghi, Paul Schultz

Picture 2: Arvin Group from Ypsilante, Left to right: Tino Lambros, Dave Arvin, Russ Campbell, Ron Podolak

Russ Campbell commenced the ceremony with a tribute to Bob Arvin’s life and legacy to the Class of 1965. Gene Manghi then read a letter from Tom Abraham, who was Bob’s wrestling teammate for the 4 years and Bob Frank read a letter from Chuck Mosely, Bob’s roommate. Both letters provided multiple examples of Bob’s leadership and inspiration over the 4 years at West Point, as well as affirming his thoughtfulness to others in every day cadet life.

Both Dave Arvin and Tino Lambros provided additional tributes and stories of Bob’s life and leadership in Ypsilante and of the work of the Arvin Foundation scholarship program as a tribute to Bob’s memory. Dave Arvin’s words captured the essence: “He always tried to do the right thing and help others if he could. Be it teammates, Classmates, friends, fellow soldiers, or his brother, so it’s fitting that this letter will be added to the display, as it is representative of Bob.”

Col Gist accepted the framed envelope and letter on behalf of the OPE and USMA. He also noted the importance of the symbolism of the Arvin Alcove to the OPE and the development program for the cadets. The considerable contingent of OPE and USMA attendees served to emphasize his remarks.

Picture 3 Presentation of the framed letter and envelope Col Gist and Russ Campbell. Picture 4 OPE and USMA Group at Ceremony (Left to right):
CPT Michael Munroe- DPE Instructor
MAJ Russell Nowels- Deputy Department Head DPE
CDT Tyler McLees- Wrestling Team Captain (Current Arvin Award Winner)
COL Nicholas Gist- DPE Master of the Sword
CSM Dawn Rippelmeyer- USCC CSM
Coach Kevin Ward-USMA Head Wrestling Coach

COL John Drago- Deputy Commandant
2LT Chandler Smith (Previous Arvin Award Winner-Class of 2015)
LTC(R) Todd Messit- USCC G8/Wrestling Officer Representative

Note our Class flag behind the instructor.

Picture 5 Framed Letter and Envelope:

After the ceremony, the entire group had lunch at the West Point Club. We then had an excellent tour of the entire Arvin Gym Complex by CPT Michael Munroe. The Stairway to Heaven and very high rock climbing wall were particularly impressive, as was the survival swimming pool which can now generate fog and 18” waves as part of the obstacles cadets have to survive. Classmates will be happy to know there is still the platform from which you have to take the one step in order to graduate.

Dave Arvin and Tino Lambros wanted to visit the cemetery and we took the group there. We visited Bob’s grave site and other Classmates in that general area. The picture has the group centered on Bob Arvin’s headstone.

Picture 6 Cemetery Visit: Jose Sanchez, Tino Lambros, Gene Manghi, David Arvin, Ron Podolak, Paul Schultz, Russ Campbell.

The balance of the day was spent visiting other sites at West Point. The Cadet Chapel, Visitor’s Center and Museum were some of the other areas visited. Subsequent to the ceremony day, we have received very appreciative letters from Dave Arvin, Tino Lambros, COL Gist, and others. It was really a great day to honor Bob’s legacy, relive old memories, and share some USMA traditions and stories with Dave Arvin, Tino Lambros, and Ron Podolak. Jose brought a friend along, Frank Pucci, Frank is a Vietnam Veteran with a great sense of humor and he really enjoyed the day also.

Paul Schultz
Class of 1965

I received so much information and pictures of this event that I have decided to share it in two parts. In the next part you will see a great letter from Tino Lambros and many more pictures as well as a link to the article in the Pointer View.

The Presentation of the Bob Arvin Letter to the OPE - Part 2

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Tino Lambros, who I mentioned in Part 1 of this report, wrote a very nice letter to all who were, in any way, involved in the effort over many years in remembering and honoring our dear friend Bob Arvin. Many of you may have already read this as he sent it out to a very large number of addressees, including many of our Classmates. Tino wrote:

To one and all…A huge THANK YOU everyone.

We are all home safely savoring the past couple of days. It was an unbelievable experience. My brother- in-law Ron and I cannot thank everyone enough. I am quite sure Dave had similar feelings, as well. Everyone was so gracious and kind. You made us feel very comfortable in such imposing and humbling surroundings. Again, Thank you!

Photo Left: a shot of our Class President, Russ Campbell, sharing a few words while holding up Bob Doughty’s terrific book which, of course, has a picture of Bobby Arvin on the cover. That’s COL Nicholas Gist – DPE Master of the Sword behind him

Life is so unpredictable. It is impossible to put together the chain of events, both sad and uplifting that brought us to the Arvin letter Alcove Ceremony 54 years later. None of this would be possible without the West Point class of 1965. About fifteen years ago it all started with Ypsilanti resident Dutch Jordan who believed the Ypsilanti VFW Post should be named in honor of Captain C. Robert Arvin, celebrating the 70th anniversary of the Post. The Ypsilanti Community joined with the West Point Class of 1965 to form a very successful 12-year partnership.

I'd like to thank those current West Point employees who made this all possible. Your support and encouragement to have Bob's letter placed in the Arvin Alcove. I am proud and honored to be a part of this. I do not have their email address, so please pass this on to them - Col. Nick Gist, Col. John Drago, Maj Russ Nowels, CPT Mike Munroe, CSM Dawn Ripplemeyer, Head wrestling coach Kevin Ward and his staff and team members, Kelsey Thomas (Rep from the Army A Club), Madi Salvani (photographer - eager to see the pictures), and Jose' Sanchez's friend, Frank Pucci (with whom we had a great dinner and conversation).

I was asked to be on a golf committee and thus began my more than 12-year relationship with the Class of 65. Art Hester was our first contact followed by Walter Oehrlein and Mitch Bonnet. The Arvin Foundation presented Awards for Excellence to 115 Ypsilanti area students and awarded $110,700. Our awards' dinners were the best awards programs for high school recipients. Eleven members or the Class of 65 served as keynote speakers - Clair Gill, Art Hester, Chuck Mosely, Fred Laughlin, Bob Jones, Secretary Shinseki, Dan Christman, Paul Bucha, Tom Abraham, Joe Anderson, and Dave Kuhn. Many more classmates attended the Foundation events and donated to the Foundation. 1959 Ypsilanti graduate Jim Warner was the other keynote speaker. He spent over 5 years in the Hanoi Hilton and Ypsilanti celebrated his release with a beautiful community celebration.

I must take this opportunity to thank several long time Ypsi residents and Arvin Committee members. They contributed do much to the Foundation's success - Tom Manchester, Jay Baxter, John Nordlinger, and Chuck Kettles (He is in the final stages of being awarded the Medal of Honor).

Photo Right: Dave Arvin (Bob’s brother) sharing a few comments. Note our Class Flag prominently displayed behind him

The Arvin Board of Directors voted to dissolve the Foundation and move its resources into an endowment fund. This will raise enough to fund at least one scholarship a year in Bob's name.

Again, thank you all so much. It's been a pleasure. I have enjoyed meeting so many of you over the years. I hope we can cross paths a few more times. If not, I look forward to meeting you "on the high ground".

C. Tino Lambros
Arvin Foundation

Here are a few more pictures of the event to give you a better feel for what it was like to be there. Next is Gene Manghi reading a letter from Tom Abraham.

The next shot shows Bob Frank reading a letter from Chuck Moseley followed by.

Here we have Tino Lambros sharing some thoughts and finally the unveiling of the framed letter.

In case you still want more, our friend Cathy Kilner, of the AOG, gave us this link to the Pointer View. Go to page four for their report on this event. Be sure to give the download plenty of time, it’s a big file.

A big thank you to all who made this event possible for the amazing Class of ’65. Strength and Drive!

Bedrest and Bunny Ears for Bob

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

I recently heard that my good friend, Bob Radcliffe, is back in the hospital. I guess we old guys don’t heal as fast as we used to. I called Bob this morning and he was in good spirits and we discussed his recovery prognosis. We decided to wait until the results of some tests came through before I sent out this message. However, just before we hung up, I heard about the picture below and then I received this excellent report from his wife, Faye Hayes, and I decided there was no sense to waiting. Pictures like the one below don’t come along every day. Faye writes:

Some of you may have already heard that Bob is back in the hospital with a knee infection. He was admitted back into New Hanover Regional Medical Center in Wilmington last Sunday.

The doctors have identified the bacteria that has caused the current knee infection (in the most recent knee replacement) and they have Bob on IV antibiotics. The current bacteria is different from the one that caused last year’s infection and fortunately, it has not entered the blood stream. Early next week, the orthopedic surgeon will perform surgery to go into the knee and 
check for damage to the artificial joint. Depending on what they find, it could be as simple as thoroughly “washing out” the joint and injecting antibiotics around the joint. Worse case is, they will remove the artificial joint and put in a temporary spacer like was done last year. Bob would then be treated with antibiotics until the infection is gone and then have a later surgery to put a permanent knee joint back in.

The infectious disease doctor believes Bob’s immune system has somehow been compromised and is not fighting infections in a normal way. We are hoping and praying that the surgeon will find that the current joint can be cleaned up and it will respond to the antibiotics and not have to be removed. Bob is not nearly as sick as he was last year since this infection has not become sepsis (gone into the blood stream).

He has his cell phone (910-398-2528) and is answering calls/voicemails as he is able until the surgery. As I said, we are hopeful that the surgery will not result in having to replace the current artificial joint. The final decision on removal will not be made until the surgeon actually looks at the joint during surgery.

And here is the photo I mentioned. Does this look like a former U.S. Army Colonel and later a titan of business or what? I guess there’s a little Easter Bunny in all of us.

Thanks so much for your prayers and concern for Bob and me.

All the Best,


Thanks Faye for keeping us up to date.

The most interesting man in the World?

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

It’s just possible that my good friend, Harley Moore, is trying to take over from the guy who advertises Dos Equis Beer, as the “Most interesting man in the world”. Not only does he look a little like the actor but he has shared a pretty exotic and interesting vacation that he and Myrna have been taking in Southeast Asia. Harley writes:

Rick, it's going home day after seven weeks in SE Asia: Thailand, Malaysia, Burma, Laos, Cambodia, and (South) Vietnam). Survived the trip, despite a glancing blow from a motorbike in Saigon (the advice of just walk slow and steady with the light and they will avoid you is BS; carry a weapon and drive in a tank retriever is better advice). Here are a few pictures of Myrna and me, and friends, near Chang Mai, Thailand.

The coolie hat with the baseball cap under it is a unique look and we clearly have to acknowledge his prowess with pachyderms.

The whole trip was interesting, enlightening, and generally fun, but we are ready to be home in San Francisco. Maybe the best part of the trip was missing all the political hoo hah in the US.

Best to you and all those other old guys,


Thank you Harley, “Stay thirsty my friend!”

Family photo at Founders day

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Here’s a brief comment and a great family picture to share. Clair Gill writes:

Clair and Sherry Gill son Clair and Fran Gill. First time ever they have been near enough to join us for the Founders Day Dinner. Son Clair and Fran and Joshua have lived in Arlington for 10 months and will move to Ft Drum in June to assume command of the Aviation Brigade there.

Thanks Clair, great picture!

The Rest of the Story with "Nine Naked Ladies"

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

The last installment on the string of Bunnograms regarding "Friends with a common hobby", came on March 16th with a nice story, shared by Denny Coll, about our Classmate Ed Klink. Denny told us about Ed’s prank and donation of a piece of his art work as a raffle prize during our mini reunion in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Since then I received a great story from Jack Thomasson. Unfortunately, the story did not include a picture that seemed necessary to make it complete. After much hounding and cajoling, I now have a picture and even more to the story to share. Jack first shared this with me:

My wife Annie and I were at that event. She suggested that we buy two raffle tickets so I did. It was Halloween night. Annie was sitting on a couch with Step Tyner talking when she said to him, “Just a second, they're going to call Jack's name”. My name was immediately called and Step, never at a loss for words, said, “You're a witch”. It was a fun time and Ed's painting still hangs proudly in my home.

And here is the original picture I shared of Ed (with his wig) showing his donation to the raffle. Next is the picture of Jack and Annie with their prize. I am sharing it as large as possible to show as much detail as possible. I notice, also, that it is not identical to the one Ed is showing. He actually produced many very similar paintings.

When I received the e-mail with Jack’s picture, he added this cute story:

Here is the painting. Another example of Ed's sense of humor follows. After winning the raffle I was walking through the bar at La Fonda and saw Ed at a table with some Classmates. I told him how much we loved the painting and asked him if he had named it? He said "Yes I call it 'Nine Naked Ladies' ". I scratched my head and looked at the painting again. Sure enough if you look at the trunks as legs and the foliage as buttocks and imagine the women as bending over so that only their legs and bottoms were showing, there they are, all nine of them. Every time I stop and look at that painting I smile and remember Ed.

What a great story! Thank you Jack and Annie, for sharing this. Ed was clearly one of a kind. I’m sure we all miss him greatly.

USMA Class of '65: Building and Maintaining Relationships

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

My good friend, Fred Laughlin, sent me this link along with some very inspiring words. You’d think that this gentleman, Robert Waldinger, was talking specifically about our Brotherhood of Strength and Drive. Give yourself a break for just a few minutes to listen to this. You will be glad you did. Fred writes:

A friend of mind sent me this link to a 12-minute Ted Talk, which I commend to your viewing:

As Professor Waldinger points out, the study tends to validate an oft-cited tenet — that good relationships affect our health and happiness. Yet as I listened to it, I thought about how the Class of ’65 has invested in the kind of relationships he is talking about. Waldinger mentions that millennials have fame and fortune as their goals, which neither surprises nor bothers me as I don’t see that as much different from the aspirations of preceding generations — including ours. However, with the redefinition of marriage, the reliance on electronics for communication, the abundance of information, the absence of privacy, and the reluctance of millennials to commit, I wonder if establishing and maintaining strong relationships will be more difficult for them.

As for me, I’m thankful for our Class as a source of strong relationships, the kind Waldinger is talking about, thanks in no small part to you, Denny, and all of our Classmates who strive to remain connected and communicating. Then there’s (1) the faithfulness of Bob Radcliffe and many others in organizing the semi-annual golf outings and numerous gatherings around the country; (2) the dedicated group of Class officers who have been so resourceful in gaining recognition for various Classmates; and (3) the many other initiatives across the country in honoring Classmate achievements, recognizing needs, and organizing support to meet those needs. I suppose we don’t need a Harvard study to certify the value of strong relationships. Still it’s encouraging to hear that the relationships so many in the Class have nurtured just might add some quality years to our lives.



Fredric Laughlin
H: 623-670-7966
C: 301-520-8594

Thanks Fred. I hope this inspires even more connections and stories for me to share.

From Chesapeake to Cheesecake for a Birthday

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

I just received this very nice report on the frequent gathering of some of our Classmates in Richmond. Dave Hopkins writes:

As you may recall from my previous emails, Jim and Margie Berry, Jim and June Harvey, Jim & Lynne Helberg, Darlene and I get together for lunch or dinner two or three times a year. (And last November, Bob and Tricia Clover joined us.) On Mar 22, the Berrys, the Harveys, Darlene and I met for lunch at the Cheesecake Factory in Richmond’s far west end. Jim and Lynne and Bob and Tricia were unable to join us.

Jim and June made the 120-mile drive from Chesapeake and arrived before the rest of us. Jim and Margie’s arrival from Fredericksburg was delayed a few minutes after their GPS, instead of keeping them on the interstate, routed them through some back roads in the area. Ah, the joys of technology! Jim later made up for those few minutes by asking our waitress to bring six forks so we could help him with the cheesecake she brought for his birthday celebration. The things we do to help out a Classmate!

Jim Berry with his mango-key lime cheesecake. You just happened to come up with my all-time favorite desert! (He looks pretty good for a guy our age!)

Who’d have believed we’d go through two hours without an in-depth analysis of Army football? But we solved that problem when we met in November. This time, we were so busy defining the “approved solutions” for today’s world problems, we didn’t take time to rehash those we solved in November.

We forgot to take photos until a few minutes before we left, but here’s one from just before we headed home.

Here’s (left to right), Margie Berry, Darlene and Dave Hopkins, Jim Berry, Jim and June Harvey

We all had a wonderful time, as usual, and are already planning our next get-together.

Dave – for all of us

Great report Dave, thank you very much.

Sharing the Interviews of the Center for Oral History (COH)

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

For several years and especially in recent months, a lot of work has gone into the Center for Oral History. In some of my communications with Classmates, I have discovered that there are folks who don’t have a good handle on what this project is all about. For that reason, I have asked our Class President (Russ Campbell) to share a few thoughts on the project. Soon I plan to start sharing the interviews of our Classmates, one at a time, periodically, over the next few months. Since I’m not bold enough to share them in any kind of order that would suggest a priority or preference, I will be sharing them in the order they were actually recorded. I hope this will be as interesting and entertaining for you as it is for me.

Russ writes:


Last week I was at West Point and had the opportunity to meet with LTC. David Siry, Director, Center for Oral History (COH). David was effusive in his thanks and appreciation for the contributions that the Class of '65 has made to the Center, both in terms of financial support and interviews. You may recall that members of the Class have been significantly involved with the startup, oversight, and management of the COH, namely Harry Dermody, Bob Doughty, Fred Laughlin, Tom Barron, and Clair Gill. Further, at our 50th Reunion the Class approved a contribution to the COH endowment of $2,000,000. Because of our significant investment in the COH, it behooves us to stay committed and involved with its operation.

One way to do this is to focus on the oral interviews, which we now want and can promote within the Class. At our last Class Leadership Team meeting in November, it was motioned and approved to launch an organized interview plan, VIP '65 (Volunteer Interview Program ’65), with Fred Laughlin as POC. This initiative is well underway as evidenced from the recent interviews by several Classmates. We encourage more Classmates to participate in the process either by giving an interview or by viewing them.

In the near future Rick Bunn is going to launch a communications program periodically highlighting interviews in the order that they have occurred. Look for the first of these messages soon.

Everyone has a story to tell, and the COH is a great place to tell it. Our Class has some unique experiences and stories to be told and to be heard.

"Strength and Drive",


Soon I will be sharing a link to the first interview. I hope that it and the interviews to follow will generate some positive feedback.

The Passing of Edgardo Abesamis

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Mark Sheridan has graciously accepted the role of POC for the family of Edgardo Abesamis and for us. His first report is shared here and there will be much more coming soon:

I spoke at some length with Susana Abesamis yesterday when I saw Rick's announcement of Ed's passing. Her phone number is 0116329395227 and the time difference is EST + 12 hrs. She is very badly shaken, and could use as much support and positive feedback as the Class can provide. She understands that geography limits our efforts, but was touched that we all thought so well of Ed. He was a great person and he made it easy to be his friend.

I did not ask for any details or dates of services-as I said she was very upset. I will E-mail her later today, and perhaps there is a planned memorial service at which we can arrange for some token from S&D. I know Susana would like that very much.


And one more Founder's Day, this time from DC

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Well, it’s clearly that time of year. Here we have one more report on probably the largest gathering for Founders Day. This time from the West Point Society of DC. Chuck Nichols put together this fantastic report for us and I can’t think of thing he missed. I wish I had been there for the camaraderie and the music must have been amazing! Chuck writes:

The Founders Day activities started with the posting of the Colors by the Old Guard Honor Guard and the singing of the National Anthem lead by the West Point Alumni Glee Club. The theme of the dinner was recognition of Viet Nam era veterans. Every veteran was presented with the Viet Nam Commemorative Committee lapel pin during registration. The pins were provided by the Alumni Glee Club, a Commemorative Partner. Ric Shinseki proposed the toast to Viet Nam Veterans present and departed.

The Distinguished Class of '65 was the class with the largest attendance at the dinner.

Photo Left: A high point of the dinner was the presentation of the 2016 Castle Memorial Award to our own Clair Gill

Here we see the reading of the award and then Clair’s speech.

The Castle Award is the most prestigious award presented by the Society for service to West Point and the Society.

Photo Right: The Class assembled for the obligatory picture with members from left to right - FRONT ROW: Bob Frank, 2LT Ryan Hitt '15, Mary Frank, 2LT Kristen Hitt '15 (the LTs Hitt were the youngest grads plural who presented an informative and humorous tag-team accounting of how tough it was to live in air conditioned barracks), Sherry Gill, Lynne DeFrancisco, Phyllis Wolff, Dorethe Skidmore, Karen Ferguson, Nancy Riley (Glee Club Conductor), Nancy Ryan, Maria Cahill, Janet Koletty, Geraldine Moorefield, Patty Shinseki, 2LT Ashley Phillips '15 BACK ROW: Chuck Nichols, Bruce Marshall, Clair Gill, Joe DeFrancisco, Bob Wolff, Frank Skidmore, Jim Ferguson, Terry Ryan, Pete Cahill, Ken Moorefield, Jack Koletty, Ric Shinseki.

In keeping with the theme of recognizing Viet Nam veterans the Alumni Glee Club presented a formal premier of the Viet Nam Medley consisting of music from the Viet Nam era accompanied by video images painting a picture of that challenging time and, more importantly, to offer our Viet Nam veterans, a long overdue "Thank You" and "Welcome Home." The imagery was so effective and the music so moving many attendees were moved to tears. You can see the emotion on the faces of Janet and Jack Koletty and Dore and Frank Skidmore.

Pete Lynn had a solo part | and other '65ers lent their voices to the production

The evening ended with the Alumni Glee Club leading the 579 attendees in the Alma Mater.

Now that must have been one heck of a great party. Congratulations to Clair on his well-deserved award.

Founder's Day in Richmond, Virginia

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Jim Helberg shared this nice report regarding the Founder’s Day Dinner in Richmond and then Roger Frydrychowski shared a few shots taken at the dinner. At the very bottom is the excerpt from an After Action Report (to which Jim makes reference in his report) sent out by the Society after the dinner. Jim writes:

Richmond Founders Day saw only two 1965 folks there: Roger Frydrychowski and me (with my wife, Lynne). The other local guys couldn't make it for a variety of reasons.

I’m sharing this After Action Report because of the references (highlighted below) to the Families of the Wounded Fund, a charity operated by (among others).

Photo Left: our former Classmate, Bill Haneke (he is on the left in this picture along with other dignitaries at the dinner)

Bill started with us and ultimately graduated with the class of 1966 and was badly wounded in Vietnam (he has endured 150+ surgeries over the years). Some of our Classmates are aware of this fund, but probably many are not. It is run entirely and voluntarily by Bill and his cohorts and all administrative costs are born by a local bank in the Richmond area thus 100% of any donations go to the people they are committed to helping.

How this all came about is a fairly inspiring story and I would encourage anyone interested to use the link in the email below to go to the Families of the Wounded website listed under "Links". Although Bill is not technically our Classmate, he is sort of connected to us and the fund he and his friends created is a really great support for our wounded soldiers and their families about whom LTG Johnson spoke eloquently at the affair.

Jim Helberg

Roger then contributed these shots.

Photo Right: Jim Helberg on the left and Roger surrounding himself with very beautiful women (the two ladies and the young man on the right are recent ‘15 graduates) (I’m told the young lady in the evening dress chose dress rather than her uniform because she doesn’t have enough “stuff” on her uniform yet – hey that works for me)

The next shots include one young lady from the previous picture. Her name is Lt. Judd and she is a student at Ft. Lee in the class taught by the Cpt. (Samantha Smay – ‘08) on the far right. By now, I imagine we are all totally confused. Oh well, nice pictures anyway. Lt. Judd and Jim.

Finally, here is the After Action Report referred to earlier.

Thank you gentlemen for a very interesting report.

The passing of Edgardo Abesamis

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

It is my sad duty to inform you of the passing of our dear Classmate Edgardo Q. Abesamis. The notice I received from the AOG is below:

LTC Edgardo Q. Abesamis, Philippine Army Retired, USMA 1965, Cullum #25568, passed on March 17, 2016, in Quezon City, Philippines. To be interred in Loyola Memorial Park, Metro Manila, Philippines at a later date.

The next of kin is his wife, Mrs. Susana Abesamis.

Given that Edgardo passed so far away from most of us, it will be difficult to assist his widow, Susana Abesamis, and her family. I am looking for someone who knew Edgardo and would be willing to assist by long distance communications. I’m not sure how much we can do, but I have already sent Susana and e-mail (using the address in our Class Roster) to offer assistance. Please step up if you feel there is anything you can do to help out with this difficult situation.

Grip hands my friends as one more of our dear brothers has fallen.

A follow up on - Another Founder's Day - this time in Saint James, North

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

It wasn’t long after I sent out the message on the Founder’s Day in Saint James, North Carolina that George Bell got back to me with this brief follow up which just shows how well the internet serves us. I’m sure it sounds a bit self-serving for me, but he makes a very good point about how important it is to keep our communication going. George wrote:

After I sent the email, I went off to have a taste of wine. Within minutes, we had a call from Mark and Linda Sheridan. Linda and my wife, Carol, were classmates at Ladycliff. We had not heard from them for quite a while; they did not attend our 50th which was so unusual for them but it was so wonderful for both of us to catch up. A clear demonstration of the power of the internet and the importance of our Class communications. It made me take a double take on the impact communication has on our Classmates and wives as we approach the sunset of our lives.

My best regards,


Thank you George. Let’s keep those messages and reports (and photos) coming.

Another Founder's Day - this time in Saint James, North Carolina

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

George Bell sent me this very nice report on the Founder’s Day activities in Saint James, North Carolina. George writes:

A few classmates celebrated Founder’s Day at Saint James Plantation, North Carolina on March 16, 2016. It was a small gathering of Alumni from the immediate area.

Photo: from left to right, Dan & Susan Christman, Carol & George Bell, Faye Hayes & Bob Radcliffe, Gordy Larson, and Major sitting on the floor.

(It must have been a rather tame affair if Major was the only one sitting on the floor)

Yesterday, Bob and I with spouses also attended the Cape Fear West Point Society Founder’s Day in Wilmington, NC. It was a larger but informal function and we reconnected with Rick Charles, Pat Kinney, and Steve and Ann Harmon. S&D.



Thank you George, now who is going to give me something from the Wilmington Founder’s Day?

2016 Ring Melt & Class of 1965

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

I was recently included in a string of e-mails that were sent between Bob Frank, Bob Scully, and Susan Keats Moore (the widow of our deceased Classmate, Bob Keats). The subject of the messages was the 2016 Ring Melt and the role our Class had this year. Bob Frank was doing his usual great job of keeping track of the goings on at the Point and had shared some thoughts with both Bob Scully and Susan regarding this very unique event.

Once I read through the e-mails, I contacted Bob Scully and asked if he would be kind enough to expand his comments into a report that I could share with all of you. I guess I pushed pretty hard because when I called after receiving it, his first words were, “what grade did I get?” This struck me as very funny as sometimes I feel as if English is my second language but I don’t have a first. As for Bob’s report, I could give it no less than an A+ but I’ll let you judge that for yourselves. I feel pretty confident in my rating as it seems to agree with the rating given by our ex English “P” and my frequent helper in things grammatical, Bob Frank.

With assistance from our friend at the AOG, Cathy Kilner, I was pleased to capture a few pictures from the event. Here, then is Bob Scully’s report:

Friday, March 18, 2016


The AOG ring melt was conducted on Monday, February 22, 2016 at the Pease & Curren Foundry in Warwick, Rhode Island. Susan Keats Moore, the widow of our deceased Classmate, Bob Keats KIA during the TET offensive, donated Bob’s ring and made the presentation. She was accompanied by her husband Barry Moore. Bob was my plebe/yearling roommate in company C-2. Jeanette and I also attended in support of Susan.

Photo Right: Susan placing the ring in the crucible and then obviously showing some emotion as I’m sure she was dealing with many memories

Susan, Barry and two of Bob’s brothers, Walter and Roger and their wives, and Bob’s niece, Xandra attended part of our 50th reunion last May. They came primarily for the memorial service and cemetery visit. All remarked favorably on how well and warmly they were received. They felt very welcome. They were particularly impressed by the Class custom of inviting family members of deceased Classmates to our reunions. They did not know of any other institution which has a similar custom.

During the post memorial service lunch, there was a family (they let me stay) discussion about preservation of Bob’s West Point memorabilia. They had heard about the ring melt but were not knowledgeable about it. I described it, they decided to make the donation, and I put them in touch with the AOG.

The ring melt was a pleasant experience for all of us. We had a cadet at our dinner table, so I probably bored everyone with my “old grad” stories. After the ceremony, John and Mary Kay Salomone joined the four of us for lunch. I commented to Barry that he must feel like an associate member of the Class by now.

I presented the ring of Jonathan Vordermark, class of 1943. His family was unable to attend and in that circumstance the AOG likes to have a fellow graduate make the presentation. I had the honor. His son sent a very nice thank you note to me. He is a VMI graduate. They plan to initiate their ring melt custom.

Photo Left: Bob Scully placing the ring of Jonathan Vordermark (’43) into the crucible and then saluting as part of the ceremony


Telephone 631-366-0768

Thank you Bob Frank for bringing this to my attention and to Bob Scully for an excellent report. And a salute to Susan for making this very meaningful contribution on behalf of our dear friend Bob Keats and also to Barry Moore for being a part of the ’65 contribution to this event.

And even more on "Friends with a common hobby"

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

My good friend and predecessor in in this job, Denny Coll sent along a great reminder to me of the prank that the late Ed Klink pulled on many of us during a mini-reunion in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Denny writes:

Probably one of the best ever Ed Klink stories had to do with our mini-reunion out in Santa Fe many years ago. When we found out that Ed, who would become a very successful artist in his own right (but go it in total defilade); was a local, he agreed to have a little bit of fun with our assembled S&D crowd.

We had scheduled a Friday night cocktail hour at one of the local art galleries. As all of the Classmates and spouses came up the steps into the gallery, they were greeted by this shaggy looking dude with a wig on. That’s Ed on the left with his wig and donated painting. His (second) wife on right (cannot remember her name). Remember, his first wife was the sister of one of our Classmates.

No one paid much attention but it was actually Ed. We sold tickets at $65 per and raised enough money to pay for the next night's Class dinner. In return, Ed donated and we raffled off one of those "tree" paintings.

It was really a lot of fun for all of us.

Great guy, multi-talented and truly missed

Denny Coll

Thanks Denny, a great addition to our string of messages regarding art.

Annual get together for Western West Pointers

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

My good friend, Dennis Hawker, took over the planning of the Annual Arizona Gathering, when Donna and I moved up to the Pacific Northwest. He has shared the details for this year’s Gathering which I want to give all of you with the hope that some of you may find yourself in the Phoenix Valley of the Sun at that time.





Donna and I will be there with the hope that we will see many other Classmates for what is always a really good time.

More on "Friends with a common hobby"

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Ted Kleinmaier, responded to my story on the art discussion between Bob Anderson and Dan Donaghy with this reminder of another very gifted artist in our Class, the late Ed Klink. Ted writes:

More on "art".

Before Ed Klink passed, Betsy and I were fortunate to purchase one of our classmate's "trees" paintings by mail order from the   Besides being a very successful entrepreneur and founder of multi-million-dollar E & A Industries of our hometown, Indianapolis, he was a recognized artist.  "E" for Ed and "A" for his partner, Al Hubbard.     

Reminder to follow our women's BB team in the NCAA tournament!  


Here is a sample of some of Ed’s work:

To find more of Ed’s works you can go to the following link. However, I’ll caution you that not all you will see there is his work.

More from the Founder's Day at the West Point Society of New York

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

I’m always happy to share a quick note and a photo. Following a recent phone conversation with Tom Barron, I received this nice picture. Tom writes:

Tom Barron with the Daughters of '65: at left, Robin Galloway (daughter of Tom Fergusson) and right, Christina Cooley (daughter of our fallen brother, Jack Cooley).


Now there’s a happy camper surrounded by beautiful ladies. Thanks Tom.

The Story of the Founder's Day Dinners

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

I recently shared a little information concerning the origin of the Founder’s Day celebrations around the globe. My horrible memory did not permit me to name my source, but I’m pleased to find that the information was not too far off the mark. Bernie Ziegler was kind enough to share the attached “Rest of the Story”. He writes:

I've attached an article I previously collected when we (Curt Adams, John Concannon, Larry Bennett and me) members of the Class of 65 planned the Heritage Hunt Founders Day in Gainesville, Virginia.


All the best!

Bernie Ziegler

Thanks Bernie, good stuff.

Founder's Day with the West Point Society of New York

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Well, here is one more Founder’s Day celebration. Seems to me I read recently where there are questions regarding the origin of this annual event. I understand it only started in the early decades of the last century with no one currently being able to pinpoint the reason but, what the hey, who needs details when we have a chance to tip a few with Classmates and friends?

Ross Wollen, one of my strong sources of great information from the Big Apple, has provided a few words about this year’s get-together along with a few nice pictures. Ross writes:

The New York City Founder’s Day program featured the Supe, business tycoon David McCormick '87 and Fox News Anchor Jon Scott, whose son, a Grad, just returned from duty in Afghanistan. All were great!

The life of another father of a Grad, LTC Matt Scalia '95, was celebrated in a two-page insert in the Founder’s Day Program. Justice Antonin Scalia was the Guest of Honor recently both for West Point Society of New York and The Union League Club, site of the Founder’s Day Dinner and several West Point Cadet and '65 displays. The Justice loved one of the Club's rooms where he often indulged himself in poker, cigars and a nice drink.

Photo Left: We have a nice picture of Joe DeFrancisco with his beautiful bride, Lynne and Bob McClure, the President of the Association of Graduates (AOG)

The Oldest Grad, BG Sam Lessey '45, gave one of best such speeches ever. At 91, a little slower than when he played on the US National Soccer Team but as sharp as when he collected Law and Business Graduate Degrees from Harvard, Sam approached the podium with a stack of notes the size of (you'll have to be Class of 1990 or earlier to appreciate this) a New York City Phone Book. Having suffered too much of the second man to walk on the moon once, we feared the worst. Sam quickly detailed in descending order the number of words in the Bible, Constitution, Declaration of Independence and Gettysburg Address. He then turned to his 5" of notes. With an Old Grad twinkle he said: "Hey, only two: BEAT NAVY!!!"

A Ross Wollen 

Photo Right: We have the group of ’65 attendees, from left to right: Lynne DeFrancisco, Myrita Pindar (Ross Wollen’s Partner), Ross Wollen, Joe DeFrancisco, Cadet Dillon Burke (who just happens to be getting his new car next week – ah the memories!) and Jose Sanchez

Ross went on to say, “While the younger classes attended an ‘after Founder’s Day party’ across from the New York Public Library, several of the ’65 contingent retreated upstairs to the Union League Club to the favorite room of Antonin Scalia, mentioned earlier.

Thanks Ross for another great report.

Friends with a common hobby

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

I don’t normally share correspondence between Classmates, but I am making an exception here because two things struck me about these messages that I thought might be of interest. First I want to share a little conversation that went on between Bob Anderson and Dan Donaghy because they share a love of painting and both hope to inspire others to enjoy the therapeutic effects derived from their hobby. And secondly, Dan shared a picture in his message that is near and dear to all our hearts. As you may recall, it was Dan who designed our Class crest and he has shared one of his original sketches of the crest.

For those who may not remember, the submission of the original sketches to the Balfour Company was complicated when the other companies competing for the opportunity to provide our Class rings, complained of foul play. They were convinced that the sketches were so professional looking that they accused Balfour of providing them to our Class committee which would have been a violation of the bidding procedure. Dan’s beautiful work resulted in a crest and then the rings that have become symbols of the overwhelming pride we all feel for being members of this amazing brotherhood called “Strength and Drive”.

On the 10th of March I shared a little story from Bob Anderson which included many pictures of his beautiful home in California and a few of his paintings. Dan responded through me with a brief message to tell Bob how much he enjoyed seeing the paintings and to ask about his hyphenated name in the story I shared. Bob’s response follows and that is followed by Dan’s, much more complete, response. Bob wrote:


I'm glad you liked my paintings -- watercolors mostly, with an acrylic (the colorful sailboat) and a combo watercolor plus acrylic (passenger liner Britannic). I've also done a few charcoal drawings - - face of Jesus, Somerset Maughm, and a charcoal/pastel of an old American Indian and his young bride.

My name is Robert Maxwell Scott Anderson. Robert - a good Scot's name (my ancestors are from Isle of Skye). Maxwell - my dad's cousin from Cadiz, OH killed at Hickam Field, Pearl Harbor (Robert Maxwell Richey, 1st LT, US Army Air Corps Bomb Squadron). Scott - my mother Elizabeth's maiden name. She was born in Beaver Falls, PA but grew up in Warren, OH. Anderson - of the Anderson Clan. So, Dan, I am "Anderson."

My wife, Patricia, and I got hitched October 24, 2015. She kept her 2nd married name - Patricia Ann Bailey. (She was born O'Connell). And we decided to make our return address stickers "Anderson/Bailey."



Dan then responded with this message that includes two of his works. Dan writes:


I really enjoyed your pictures. I have been working in acrylics for many years and find the medium and the convenience ideal for the amateur painter. Water colors, however, are a bit more difficult. It is hoped that more people will find the therapeutic effects of painting.

It is interesting to note that my first connection with West Point came when I was in high school and I painted a picture of Bob Anderson, All-American (another Anderson) which hung on our living room wall. My father, in his infinite wisdom, (probably wanting to free up the space and to take back the sports bar look from our house) suggested that I send the picture to Bob. I did and the rest is history.

I learned on oils (photo tinting oils that my father found somewhere) but they are messier and have the turpentine smell that some (my wife) find offensive. Oils dry very slowly so it is easier to get some effects (in skies and flesh tones) that are almost impossible with the fast drying acrylics. Below is an oil painting that I did as a cadet in November 1964. I called it Mole Day at the time but I don’t know why. Beside it is my sketch for out class crest.

So, keep up the good work.

Best regards.


So, as you look for things to keep you busy in retirement, try painting. It sure seems to work for these guys.

Beer Pics

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Here’s a story that many will be able to relate to. My good friend Harley Moore, while vacationing in Southeast Asia, was kind enough to remember us with a little reminder of life during those less stressful times in Viet Nam when we could just enjoy the company of our comrades and a little beer. Harley writes:

Xin chai from Uncle Ho's City, known to us as Saigon. Myrna and I are on a two-month tour of Southeast Asia and stopped in for some beer and pho. I drank ba ba ba (333) for old times sake and can report that it's as good as it ever was. The Saigon Special, brewed by the same company is a notch or two above 333 and quite drinkable.

Saigon is unrecognizable from when I used to frequent Cholon in 1968. It's a big (10 million people with 6 million motorbikes) booming city. Many tall buildings, new hotels, shopping malls, Starbucks, McDonalds, and other aspects of free enterprise. According to our guide, communism and planned economy did not work here, but when the Hanoi government became "pink" instead of deep red communist and opened the door to free enterprise the place blossomed.

Off to the Cu Chi tunnel tour today and the delta tomorrow. Possibly not my favorite part of the trip.


Thank you my friend, you’re looking good.

Founders Day Heritage Hunt, Gainesville, Virginia

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

?It’s that time of year when we will see many stories about the Founder’s Day activities taking place all around the country. Terry Ryan was kind enough to share this very nice report from the Heritage Hunt event in Gainesville, Virginia. Terry writes:

The Class of 1965 organizers (Concannon (R.I.P.), Ziegler and Bennett) handed off this year’s Heritage Hunt (Gainesville, Virginia) Founders Day activities to upper classmen from ’61 and ’62. While not necessarily attaining the high standard of ’65 organizations, the event was well attended by over 120, including a good number of Strength and Drivers.

Photo: (Left to Right) Ann and Curt Adams, Chuck Nichols, Tom Fergusson (hiding) with June Fergusson to his front, Jim and Karen Ferguson, Pete Linn with Linda Concannon to his front, Jack Lowe, Pete and Marie Cahill, Bernie and Ellen Ziegler, Larry and Jean Bennett, Terry and Sharon Tutchings and Nancy and Terry Ryan.

The evening started with the West Point Alumni Glee Club (WPAGC) (Nichols, Ferguson, Linn, Cahill, Tutchings and Ryan participating) singing Benny Havens and the National Anthem. After dinner, oldest graduate Wally Ward ’58 regaled the receptive crowd with his boxing exploits and reminded us of Joe Palone. Not to be outdone, newly minted and lobotomized MAJ Aaron Cross ’06 (WPAGC member) spoke eloquently of his experiences.

The WPAGC then rose from their seats to the strains of “Grand Old Flag” and moved to the risers to sing two new songs honoring Viet Nam Veterans. The first was the POW Hymn written by COL Quincy Collins while imprisoned in the Hanoi Hilton. The Club then performed the new fifteen minute Viet Nam Medley, a video (artistically created by Chuck Nichols) and audio accompanied performance piece. The medley explores the challenge of those years of conflict with music of the times such as: Where Have All the Flowers Gone, Aquarius, Draft Dodger Rag, Last Train to Clarksville, Leaving On A Jet Plane, Green Berets, and ending with Bridge Over Troubled Waters. The medley also attempts to provide a long overdue “welcome home” to those who served in all services from 1958 through 1975. The medley was arranged by the WPAGC past Musical Director Gary Fitzgerald and led by the new director, Nancy Riley. The WPAGC ladies provided Viet Nam Veteran pins to all who served.

The evening ended by all rising and singing the Alma Mater and West Point At Thy Call, with a rousing concluding “Beat Navy!”

Terrance C. Ryan, PhD, PE
(703) 263-2232

Thanks Terry, super report and it’s so nice to see such a great turnout.

65'ers at Villages Founder's Day

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

I have grown to count on Jerry Merges to be my eyes and ears in Florida. Here is another fine report on the Founder’s Day in the Villages:

Here are the iron men of ‘65 at Sunday's Founders Day celebration in The Villages.

Photo Right: From the left, Dan Steinwald, Jerry Merges, Dave Gnau, Don Erbes, Don Appler

Tom Dyer (Class of '67), Distinguished Graduate, Chairman Emeritus AOG, was the honored guest speaker.

Next, with their ladies: Front row, Peg Merges, Marcella Gnau, Joy Erbes, Carol Appler. Back row, Dan Steinwald, Jerry Merges, Dave Gnau, Don Erbes, Don Appler.

Photo Left: one with our Guest speaker, Tom Dyer, Class of 67, Distinguished Grad, Chairman Emeritus, AOG with Jerry Merges, President, West Point Society of The Villages, Founders Day 2016

Thanks Jerry. As always, a great report. I think I prefer the casual attire as opposed to the black tie we had here in the Puget Sound.

Register today for the Athena's Arena Conference at West Point, April 28-30

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Once again I have a message to share from the AOG:

The Athena’s Arena: Women Strong! Inspire, Lead, Empower, conference will be held at West Point from April 28-30, 2016. The conference will commemorate 40 years of women’s achievements at the United States Military Academy. During the conference, we will discuss current women’s topics at West Point, in the Army, and across the nation. All graduates are encouraged to attend. To date, we have over 200 registrants.

Special guest speakers include:

  • U.S. Army General Ann Dunwoody (Retired), the first woman to achieve a four-star officer rank in U.S. military history and author of A Higher Standard: Leadership Strategies from America's First Female Four-Star General.
  • Gayle Tzemach Lemmon, senior fellow at the Council of Foreign Relations and author of Ashley's War: The Untold Story of a Team of Women Soldiers on the Special Ops Battlefield.

If you haven’t already registered for the conference, please do so before noon on Monday, April 18. Click here to view the conference website where you can register, view the attendee list, and make hotel reservations.

Please refer to the list below which shows the number of graduates registered per class. To view the names of those who registered, please click here. To sort the list by Class year, click on Class Of in the text box.

Classes of:
1968: 1 | 1980: 21 | 1981: 6 | 1982: 7 | 1983: 8 | 1984: 19 | 1985: 6 | 1986: 8 | 1987: 15 | 1988: 2 | 1989: 4 | 1990: 6 | 1991: 5 | 1992: 3 | 1993: 7 | 1994: 13 | 1995: 3| 1996: 3 | 1997: 10 | 1998: 2 | 1999: 8 | 2000: 4 | 2001: 3 | 2002: 1 | 2003: 4 | 2004: 4 | 2005: 2 | 2006: 6 | 2007: 7 | 2008: 1 | 2009: 2 | 2010: 1

We hope to see you in April!

Office of Alumni Events

Questions: 845-446-1649

A Ceremony at the Arvin Alcove

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Our Class President, Russ Campbell, has just asked me to share this invitation to join in the activities as we present the original letter from Bob Arvin to his high school wrestling team when he was a plebe with us at the Point. Russ writes:

To Members of the Distinguished Class of 1965,

You are cordially invited to participate as follows:

On Monday March 21st, at 11:00AM, representatives of the Class and invited guests will attend a ceremony at the Arvin Alcove followed by a luncheon.

Background: Last Fall, Walter Oehrlein and Mitch Bonnett linked up again with Tino Lambros at the Eastern Michigan football game. Tino was a high school wrestling teammate of Bob Arvin and became Chair of the Arvin Educational Foundation. Plebe Bob wrote an inspirational letter to his high school team that was always read at the Annual Arvin Scholarship Awards Banquet. Walter and Mitch alerted the Class Leadership Team that Tino gave them the letter for our '65 Class Archives. Your Leadership Team has arranged to present it to USMA for installation in the Arvin Alcove. Col. Nicholas Gist (Master of the Sword), Wrestling Team Coaches, and Cadet Wrestlers will join us at the ceremony.

Please let Russ Campbell know,, if you plan to attend.

Thank you Russ.

A farewell to Jerry Kelly

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

As you may recall, our dear friend and Classmate, Jerry Kelly, passed away on Saturday, September 19th, 2015 in an assisted living facility in Alexandria, Virginia following a year and half battle with stomach cancer. The Next of Kin, his widow, Lee, made arrangements for interment at Arlington National Cemetery (ANC). You may also recall that I made an exception to my regular practice of naming a Classmate to act as the Point of Contact (POC). Paul F. Mlakar, class of 1966 is married to Lee’s sister and the family requested that he be permitted to take on these duties. You will see his excellent report below.

ANC requires several months to schedule an interment so it took until February 18th, 2016 to arrange for Jerry’s interment. I apologize for the additional delay in getting this report to you but there were considerable complications with getting many of the photographs from the professional photographer involved. Here, now is the report from our POC Paul Mlakar (‘66):

On the morning of February 18th, 2016, family and friends gathered at Arlington National Cemetery for Jerry Kelly’s interment. Family in attendance included Jerry’s wife of fifty years, Lee; daughter Anne Louise Fruehauf (Richard) of Sewickley, PA; son Jerome Edmonde Kelly Jr. (Andrea Courduvelis) of Alexandria; and son Robert Halloran Kelly (Dana) of Alexandria. Also attending were Jerry and Lee’s seven grandchildren: Sarah and Sophie Fruehauf; Patrick and Christina Kelly; Robert, Christopher, and Thomas Kelly.

Classmates joining were Mike Applin, Dan and Nancy Benton, Bill Connolly, Tony and Irene Gamboa, Bob Harter, Leo Kennedy, Jack Koletty, Jack Lowe, Chuck Nichols, Terry Ryan, Ric and Patty Shinseki, John Thompson, and Mike Viani. Seventeen Members of the Alumni Glee Club were also present for a memorable part of the service.

I was the first to appear at the Old Post Chapel. The sky was clear but the air was cold and windy. As the “Old Guard” detail arrived, I thanked the Officer in Charge for their wintry service on behalf of the family and the Class.

By 1045 some one hundred attendees filled the Fort Myer Old Post Chapel.

Prior to the Mass of Christian Burial, the Alumni Glee Club movingly sang Mansions of the Lord. During the service, the Scripture was read by grandchildren Christina, Robert, and Patrick, and son-in-law Richard. At the conclusion of the Mass, the Alumni Glee Club poignantly rendered the Alma Mater. Jerry’s family was particularly moved by this tribute. I thankfully acknowledge the help of Terry Ryan in making this happen. Terry also seamlessly saw to the presence of the Class Flag in the Chapel and at graveside.

Photo Right: we see five of our Classmates in the Alumni Glee Club. On the far left is Terry Ryan. Next, in the gray suit is Terry Tutchings. Just to his left is Pete Linn and behind him (barely visible) is Pete Cahill. And finally, front row right is Jim Ferguson

And, of course our Class Flag – thank you Terry for taking care of that.

Movement to the burial was led by the Military Band, followed by the Escort Platoon, Caisson, and the Casket Team. In spite of the bitter weather, most of the attendees followed to the interment site in Section 52. Upon the seating of the family, the Band played several patriotic selections

The Casket Team then moved Jerry’s remains and burial flag from the caisson to the site of the service. In addition to the customary graveside rites, the priest concluded with the traditional Gaelic blessing.

Next the family members rose for honors, a rifle volley, and “Taps.” The Casket Team then folded the flag and it was presented to Lee by the Officer-in Charge. The attending Arlington Lady gave Lee a condolence card on behalf of the Army Chief of Staff and herself.

The family hosted a wonderful reception at the Fort Myer Officers’ Club after the interment. Inspiring recollections were offered by Jerry’s sons and roommate Dan Benton. All were pleased with the ceremony at Arlington and appreciated the participation of ’65 with Strength and Drive.

Thank you Paul for your outstanding service to our Class. As I close, let’s take a look back at Jerry as we knew him in the day.

Grip hands my friends as we say good bye to our dear friend Jerry Kelly. On behalf of the entire Class of 1965, I wish to express our condolences to the family and to Jerry – Be thou at Peace – Well Done!

Alumni Luncheon Presenting the Distinguished Graduate Awards

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Back on February 11, I had the pleasure of sharing with you the fact that Joe Anderson had been selected to receive the Distinguished Graduate Award (DGA). Our President, Russ Campbell, just received this notice from Cathy Kilner, of the AOG and asked me to share it also. I hope we can get a significant turn out for the award ceremony. If you are able to attend, please follow the links provided to register but also, please contact Art Hester at ( so he can coordinate our Class participation. Art was the POC for putting together the very impressive nomination package for Joe. Here is the message from Cathy:

Congratulations on the selection of your classmate, Joseph B. Anderson, Jr., as one of the West Point Association of Graduates’ 2016 Distinguished Graduates! I hope you and your classmates will be able to join us at West Point on Tuesday, May 17th for the Distinguished Graduate Award Ceremony.

Classmates are invited to participate in the Alumni March and Wreath Laying Ceremony, attend the Alumni Review, and to join us in the Cadet Mess Hall for the Alumni Luncheon featuring the Distinguished Graduate Awards. More information can be found at our registration link: Please register here if you’d like to attend.

  • Classmates who choose to join the Alumni March will assemble on Thayer Walk near the Pershing Barracks Clock Tower at 10:00, with the March step-off at 10:20. Registration for this is not necessary.
  • The week prior to the event, all registrants will receive a “Know Before You Go” email, which will contain information on parking and security at West Point, uniform, inclement weather plan, and much more.

We look forward to welcoming you back to West Point in May as we celebrate our Distinguished Graduates. If you have any questions about the event, please direct them to our Development Events office or 845.446.1641.

Cathy Kilner ’90
Associate Director, Class Services
West Point Association of Graduates
698 Mills Road West Point, NY 10996
Phone: 845.446.1563

Again, a big CONGRATULATIONS! to Joe. And one more opportunity to share this great picture.

I wish I could join you for this terrific honor.

February Class Leader Update

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Periodically, the AOG sends out to the class leadership teams, an update on current and planned activities at West Point. Here is their latest offering:

Golfing Grads
Golfing Grads of USMA is set and ready for their 28th Annual Reunion & Golf Tournament at the Grand National Golf Club in Auburn/Opelika, AL! Save the date(s): April 25-27, 2016. This tournament is open to all graduates – see the attached information brochure for details and please share within your Classes. If you have any questions or comments email:

Athena’s Arena Conference
Celebrating 40 years of women at West Point, is the Athena’s Arena Conference on April 28-30, 2016. The theme of this year’s conference is Athena’s Arena: Women Strong! Inspire, Lead, Empower, and it will explore current women’s topics at West Point, in the Army, and across the nation. Click here for more information or to sign up:

Leaders Conference
August 10-13, 2016 - Information is available for the 2016 conference at I am hoping for participation from all Classes this year! Designate your Class representative today!

First Call
Do you have stories about your Class that you’d like to see in the next First Call Email Newsletter? Send them (paragraph, photo, and contact information) to us

The latest WPAOG job postings are available online at WPAOG is a great place to work!

For your Consideration
Global War on Terror Memorial Foundation
Class of 2008 graduates Andrew J. Brennan, Katharine Tripp and Jeremy Evans have formed the Global War on Terror Memorial Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit whose purpose is to ensure that GWOT Veterans eventually stand before a memorial on the National Mall in DC dedicated to their era’s war, service, and sacrifice. General David Petraeus (Ret) ’74, and General George W. Casey Jr. (Ret) have recently begun assisting the effort in an advisory role. Please visit: more information.

Should you wish to pursue additional information regarding any of these items, please follow the links provided as we don’t have anything more than you see here.

An Early Founders Day

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

I usually try to avoid sharing too many pictures of myself but when there are only two of us, what’s a boy to do? The West Point Society of Washington, Puget Sound (WPSWPS) held its Founder’s Day Dinner, last Friday evening in downtown Tacoma, Washington. Only two of us from the great Class of ’65 were in attendance. Duncan Brown and moi. I was very careful to charge up my little camera to be sure I would be able to get a few shots to share. I then ran out the door without the camera. This getting older stuff really sucks! Anyway, I was lucky enough to talk another grad into taking a shot with his phone and then sending it to me. So here we have my good friend Duncan with his spiffy tux making me look pretty plain by comparison.

The screen behind us announces the topic of our guest speaker who is the current Supe, Lieutenant General Caslen. While many of the things we see happening would give us reason to think the “Corps has gone to Hell”, I contend that the product being developed there remains future leaders of the highest caliber. Of course we heard from the oldest (class of ’51) and the youngest (a young lady from ’15) graduates with some rather humorous perspectives on the state of the Academy.

The youngest grad comments brought back for me a fond memory of my youngest grad speech in 1966 at Kadena Officer’s Club on Okinawa. At the time I was serving as a platoon leader on a Hawk Missile Site located on the off-shore island of Tokashiki (25 miles out in the East China Sea from Naha, Okinawa. When told I would be presenting the youngest grad speech, my response was to say thanks but no thanks as I would be facing a Command Inspection the next day by none other than the Okinawa Island Commander. It didn’t take long before I got a phone call from that very same commander, informing me that I would be presenting the speech. His personal helicopter brought me to the dinner and returned me in plenty of time to prepare my troops for the inspection which we passed with flying colors. Given the circumstances, I think he was rather understanding of any deficiencies he may have overlooked.

So that’s my story and I’m sticking to it. By the way, it is now my goal to be given the opportunity to, one day, present the oldest grad speech. Wouldn’t that be fun?

We have Poets among us!

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Wow, who knew we would get folks like Larry Neal to share a poem because of the word picture shared by Diane Kline and the follow up poem by Fred Smith? Here is Larry’s offering:

Not the beautiful poetry of Diane Kline nor the quality of Fred Smith’s, but here is a poem I wrote last year on the occasion of our 50th reunion. I hadn’t intended to share it but was emboldened by Diane and Fred.

Sons of Sixty-Five
By Larry Neal

Years that have passed number two score and ten,
(Unless you’re a hive then it’s two score point five)
Since we were sent forth with a small bar of tin
And a remarkably high sense of duty and pride.

Now behold us, the sons of sixty-five,
Behold our children, our friends and our wives
And we that still stand recall times gone by,
A journey of making a difference. We cry.
Not from sorry of burdens we bear,
But rather with joy from ties that we share.

Chapter one, Vietnam.
We drew our swords as we were taught
And asked no quarter as we fought.
It turned into silver then doubled, our tin
And the kids we were leading turned into men.
We along with them, at least in my case
With no one to tell us to pick up the pace.
Maturation came not from those that we led,
But rather a result of the blood that was shed.
From Bob A. to Bob Z. with two dozen between,
Twenty-six of our mates would never be seen
As we returned home, but they would be heard,
Their memories loud, eternal presence assured.
They live in our hearts, are the soul of our nation.
We will re-join them the day we enter the Mansion.

Chapter two, just passing through.
Southeast Asia behind us we then settled in
To raising a family and earning more tin.
Our pathways diverged, our postings scattered
But never forgetting the bond that most mattered,
Links in the Long Gray Line, to be sure,
But also class cohesion that will ever endure.
Distinguished careers, remembered forever,
In civilian, in military, in public endeavors.
Behold the sons of sixty-five,
Behold their sons and daughters,
The progeny of Strength and Drive,
Who carry on the vision of our national forefathers.

Chapter three, retiree.
More time for golf, more time for travel,
More time to just sit back and marvel
At the happenstance and our good fortune
To be a part of that day in June,
Half a century ago when our hats in the air,
Signaled the start of our lifelong affair,
With classmates and comrades who really do care.

Larry Neal

(434) 823-2168

Really cool my friend. Thank you.

Visiting with the Keith's

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

My good friend Bill Hecker sent me a very nice note with a picture of a get together with Dotty and Jack Keith near Chattanooga, Tennessee. Bill writes:

Nanc and I recently passed through Chattanooga on our way to warmer climates, stopping to have a wonderful Valentine’s Day supper with Dotty and Jack Keith. Both Dotty and Jack are well and doing fine. We all had a wonderful time sharing old memories of yesterday and catching up on our recent adventures.


That’s, (left to right) Jack, Dotty, Nanc (Nancy), and Bill. I’m guessing that Jack and Dotty are on a budget or a diet and just watched Nancy and Bill eat (no dishes) but at least they got in on the wine.

Thanks for sharing this.

Winter Storm in Downingtown, Pennsylvania

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Fred Smith was inspired by Diane Kline to share his wintery scenes and his own poem. I must admit, you folks sure know how to make a guy appreciate the wet but oh so much warmer weather here in the Pacific Northwest. Fred writes:

Diane Kline caused me to reflect and share. Mary Ellen and I do love the change of seasons. And frequently remind ourselves just in case one of us forgets.

I too enjoy the change of seasons, like when we go from mostly golf in the summer to football season in the fall. Here are a few shots Fred shared. They’re great to look at but I wouldn’t want to be there. Is that a car in the driveway?

And now for Fred’s attempt a poetry:

Ski Trip

Snow flew and blew and drifted deeply
With parka and shoveling to open road far
Enough snow to finally ski
Time to go but where is my car

Fred Smith

Thanks Fred, good stuff.

On the Ridge After the Storm

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Wow, have I got a special message to share this time. I love this job and never cease to be amazed at the new and different ways that my Classmates and their wives surprise me.

This evening I received an e-mail from Diane Kline, the widow of our dear friend Doug Kline who passed in 2012. She, like so many of us, struggles with the many technological advances that impact our lives every day. As she put it, she “needs her technosavy husband” to share the pictures she has of the impact that the severe weather has had on her in her home near Winchester, Virginia. She said that since she didn’t know how to put her phone pictures into an e-mail, that she would have to put her pictures into words. And what a terrific job she did with that!

Actually, she wanted to share the pictures in response to my recent Bunnograms about some of our Classmates enjoying the sunny weather in Florida. She was pointing out that, following a recent big storm, she was “imprisoned in a fortress surrounded by 3 feet of snow and could not get out for 4 days”. She also shared that it “took them 7 hours to plow her out!” And then she said that she was “sometimes anxious, but could still hear Doug’s voice (as always) in her head, saying, ‘For gosh sakes, everything will be all right!’” So she didn’t worry and everything did turn out OK!

Below you will see some of her introductory words followed by a most profound poem. Words escape me as I try to explain how impressed I was with her writing. In her introduction you will get a chance to understand why your Leadership Team works so hard to keep our amazing class together and connected. I hope it will also inspire many of you to share the stories and pictures that we are always soliciting. Diane writes:

As I read about all those in the “sunny south” I feel so sorry for them! So here is my “winter” view that they all are missing!! As for missing, I miss Douglas every day and am so grateful for everyone’s slice of shared lives. It keeps the people and memories alive for me to know that he still lives in all of the memories of his friends and classmates too. Thank you for sharing all of your words and pictures. It helps bring a caring consecutiveness to life.

Fondly, Diane

Diane then went on to share this very beautiful poem:

On the Ridge After the Storm

Finally, my sunroom windows are clear of the seemingly ever present snow storm and the Shenandoah view is flawlessly bright again. The outlying crests of the eponymously named mountains to my left really are a wonderfully deep blue. Barely surviving the storm, the valley is laden with band aid patches on fields and in the far woods between the trunks and branches of sturdy living dormancy.

Looming directly in front of me up the Massanuttens, horizontal paralleled lines of dark brown, tan, teal and pale green flow through the mountainsides like lines of a well-read book and are majestically crowned by the vertical spire of Signal Knob, a lone sentry rising like a Phoenix from the steamy ashes of ice.

Across the horizon the Appalachians are daubed with the hues of an artist’s impressionistic pallet interspersed with the same vibrant white as if with abandon a hundred new brides shed their filmy gowns. Down below, the curving river sparkles with polka dotted ice floes while the sun and clouds vie for a dramatic comeback, casting shadowy motion pictures on the wavy flowing waters.

The wind moves the scene along with lights and sound effects as if some unseen director is hiding behind his camera obscure directing and guiding the production. And maybe he is!

Day ends and the setting sun turns the backdrop to fiery golden red and then slowly, softly to an umber traced world barely visible behind the darkened curtain of night. The director whispers “cut and print” and another memory is safely stored in my technicolored film of life.

Thank you Diane, that was beautiful!

By the way, if you find yourselves in Diane’s neck of the woods, she has included an invitation to stop by. She says she has lots of extra space for overnight guests. She lives about 10 miles south of Winchester, Virginia off I-81 and I-66 (this is really not far to the west of Washington D.C.). Her phone number is 540-869-0224. If you do stop by, please help her get her pictures to me so we can all see the beauty of her little valley.

Mini-Reunion of H-1 Pals

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Now this is my kind of report. Nothing for me to do except copy and share. It seems that the Cindric’s, Atchley’s, and Vaughn’s got together for a little fun in the warm Arizona sun. Jay Vaughn writes:

The Cindric's, Atchley's & Vaughn's, got together this past weekend at the Vaughn Arizona home for visiting and a fierce men vs women struggle over the Pegs & Jokers boards. The ladies barely won this epic encounter but the guys were by far the better sports and, some thought, more congenial. Some suspect the women took unfair advantage by cooperating with each other. The men's team did not lack for leadership. In fact, there may have been slightly too much leadership at times. Unbowed by this temporary setback, the men are negotiating details for a rematch which they will surely win. Photo 3 | Photo 4

Following this epic struggle, we headed north to Tempe, AZ to watch and cheer for the Cindric's beautiful granddaughter, Madison, as she competed on the University of Arizona Wildcat gymnastics team against in-state rival, Arizona State University. Madison, a mainstay on the team, was spectacular, especially on the beam where she scored a personal record 9.9 to win the event and help the Wildcats win the meet. Incidentally, Tom maintains she gets her sense of balance and grace from him as evidenced by the fact that he somehow made it across the log walk during Ranger School. She obviously gets her beauty from somewhere else.

Jay Vaughn

Looks like an awful lot of smiling going on. It’s good to see folks enjoying each other’s company. Thank you Jay.

Center for Oral History update

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Today I received an update from our two Classmates, Tom Barron and Fred Laughlin, on the terrific work that is being done with the Center for Oral History (COH). Just for the fun of it, I added a quick head shot of each of them. Actually, try as I would, I couldn’t get in touch with Fred so I took a shot of him off the internet. Anyway, this way you can see who is doing all this great work for us.

Within the report are references to the COH website and to the COH Facebook page. If you have a little time and would like to learn something about many of our outstanding Classmates, I highly recommend that you take the time to listen to some of the interviews.

Photo Left: Tom Barron

Tom and Fred write:

It’s been almost nine months since our 50th Reunion, which was not only a wonderful time together, but also an occasion for our class to bestow a $2 million gift on the Center for Oral History (COH). To give them a sense of the return on their investment, we thought our classmates would like an update on events at COH since our 50th Reunion.

You may recall that we worked with COL Ty Seidule, the Head of the History Department, and LTC Dave Siry, the Head of COH, for a year prior to our 50th to help them with their strategic planning and budgeting, relying heavily on Tom’s planning experience and his knowledge of the arcane financial systems at USMA and the Association of Graduates. Since our Reunion, Tom has continued to provide assistance to COH in enhancing the strategy, financial planning, and by monitoring implementation with Ty and Dave at regular intervals.

Fred has initiated the Volunteer Interview Program for the Class of 65 (VIP65), which is intended to increase the number of classmate interviews on the COH website.(To visit the COH website follow this link to the site - - then select ARCHIVES from the top left of the page, then select the second item which is our Class’s contribution thus far) The initiative has resulted in (1) COH discovering (and posting to the website) hitherto misplaced interviews with Ric Shinseki, John Alger, and Tim and Sandy Thames which were conducted in 2005 and 2006; (2) completed interviews with John Pickler, Joe DeFrancisco, and Clair Gill; (3) completed interviews with Lynne DeFrancisco and Sherry Gill; and (4) working with COH to schedule interviews with Rollie Stichweh and Hal Jenkins. There are other interviews in the works (they are communicating with Don Parcells’ widow for example), which will add to the ’65 presence in the COH library.

The Center for Oral History is ready to take the next step in the academic world of Oral History and is planning on attending the Oral History Association’s Annual Meeting this fall in California. This year is the 50th Anniversary of the Oral History Association and it will be a good opportunity for our Center to interact with and learn from some of the biggest names and programs in the Oral History business. This is an outgrowth of the first step Tom took with the Center last April when he arranged a meeting with Columbia University’s Center for Oral History.

Photo Right: Fred Laughlin

Our endowed Archive, the Vietnam War Archive, has increased to 59 interviews. Last year there were 19 interviews in this Archive. The web page itself now contains 187 interviews, up from 98 at this time last year.

In summary, we have been greatly encouraged with the response of COH to Tom’s coaching and to the VIP65 program. The present leadership is thoughtful, productive, and open to new ideas. We would encourage classmates to go to the COH Facebook page to see how they are using social media in new ways. (For those of you who do not use Facebook, here is a link that will allow you to take a look at how it is being used - We believe COH will continue to combine efficient processes with a strong infrastructure and a solid technology platform. Our gift has been well-employed and we expect its impact to be felt for many years in what we expect to be a bright future for COH.

With gratitude for being part of the Distinguished Class of ’65,

Tom Barron and Fred Laughlin

Thank you Tom and Fred for all you are doing for us and for the Center for Oral History.

Pop Pop takes the boys to a ballgame

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Chuck Moseley entertained four grandsons at an Army – Penn State game in North Carolina over the weekend and was kind enough to send me a great picture to share. Chuck writes:

Took four Moseley grandsons to Army - Penn State game Saturday here in North Carolina.

Photo: L-R: Chase, Jaxon, Twins Brad and James and Pop Pop.

Chase enters USMA on June 27th. I have suggested that he propose a class motto 0f "Vision Aplenty for 2020".(Well, it rhymes but it’s no “Strength and Drive”)

Note I have my old 1960s baseball hat in hand which I showed to some of the players. Response: Sir. That looks really old! Asked about their hats - they have three - White, Gold and Black! How times have changed!


Thanks Chuck, it’s always great to hear from you. We all wish Chase the very best this summer and as he pursues his dreams over the next few years. And the best to the other boys in whatever direction they go.

New Bern Visit

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

It looks like a lot of us are thinking about golf as spring gets closer and closer. Bob Radcliffe just sent me this note about he and Pat Kenny visiting with Steve Harman in North Carolina. This is especially good to hear as he mentions that he is finally picking up a club again after all the health problems he has been dealing with. Bob writes:

Pat Kenny and I visited Steve Harman at his Club in New Bern, NC. It was my first time on the range and all went well. It was too wet to play golf but Pat and I really enjoyed lunch with Steve.

Bob also sent along a couple of photos which always makes a Bunnogram better. Here we see Pat and Bob on the driving range and then Steve, Bob, and Pat waiting for their lunch.

I can sure relate to it being too wet to play. I haven’t played golf in several months as I live where they invented rain. However, I hope to get several rounds in before my big road trip to Savannah for the Class Spring Golf Outing that Bob has been planning. I was just trying to think of how many golf outings Bob Radcliffe has put together for us but I don’t think I can count that high.

Thanks Bob for this and all you do for us.

More Golf in Sunny Florida

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

It would appear that all you need to do is tee up a golf ball and Bob, Mary, Ray, and Linda will show up. They sure seem to be enjoying the great conditions in Florida. John Vann sent me this note with a great picture of the group:

I took this a couple of days ago with Ray and Linda Hawkins, and Bob and Mary Frank, and of course, my dear wife Eleanor, who rode with us as the rest of us played golf. Eleanor kept an eye on the guys as we "chased the rabbit" until the last hole, when Ray Hawkins pried it loose, leaving no "reward" changing hands for the bets, but lots of good camaraderie.

Photo: a great picture with (l to r) Eleanor and John Vann, Linda and Ray Hawkins, and Mary and Bob Frank

Here's the story, briefly. John and Eleanor Vann joined Ray and Linda Hawkins and Bob and Mary Frank for dinner near the Windermere Country Club, where John, Ray, Bob, Mary and Linda enjoyed a great round in the sunny Florida weather earlier in the day.

Side note: it surely is great to have Eleanor able to travel, even if she is bound to the walker most of the time. Her memory is much improved from the Oct/Nov bouts in the hospital, and this time is surely precious and healing to us both.

John Vann

Thanks John, a very nice report and it’s good to see Eleanor back on her feet.

Golfing in Orlando

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

While I always enjoy sharing gatherings of our Classmates, both large and small, I think this one just a way to show off that these folks got away from the Polar Vortex. Don’t get me wrong, I still appreciate the effort to send me the brief message and photo. Don Parrish writes:

Ray & Linda Hawkins, Bob & Mary Frank, and Don & Sharon Parrish played golf at Orange Tree in Orlando. A late lunch followed.

Seventy-five degrees. We thought of our northern brothers for about 1 second as we teed off.


Thanks Don, I appreciate the effort even if I am a little jealous. I miss both the fact that its dry and warm.

Army Navy Men and Women's Basketball on TV

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Wow, I just received this interesting news which might help many of us get through the doldrums of the “gloom period”. Gordy Larson, who did such a terrific job of giving us all the poop on the Black Knights through the football season, is now providing some very good information regarding our men’s and women’s basketball teams. Gordy writes:

Most of our classmates know that I keep up with Army football, but I also keep an eye on other Army sports as well. This Saturday, the men’s and women’s basketball teams will travel to Annapolis to take on Navy in a double header that will be televised nationally by CBS Sports Network.

The men’s team had a good pre-season, compiling a 9-3 record, but then they had some key injuries that got them off to a bad start in league play. They are currently 7-8 in the Patriot League but have won 4 of their last 5 games. They lost to Navy earlier this season at WP, but look to be peaking right now and stand a good chance of breaking even with the Mids for the season.

If you haven’t been following the exploits of Kelsey Minato and the women’s team, you’re missing something. The women are currently 22-2, which is probably the best record of any basketball team ever at WP. They lost to Duke in pre-season and to Bucknell in Lewisburg, but have dominated in most of their games since. They are a heavy favorite to make it to the NCAA tournament this year, and might not have to win the tournament to get an invitation as they received a vote for the top 25 in the AP poll.

Minato is a candidate for All American, 6th leading scorer in the US and one sports magazine refers to her as the best women’s basketball player who won’t be going pro. She broke Kevin Houston’s all-time scoring record and is closing on the Patriot League women’s all-time record.

The women absolutely crushed Navy in their first meeting this year, which was played at Madison Square Garden and broadcast by CBS Sports.

Women’s game starts at 11 AM EST followed by the men’s game at 1:30 PM EST.

Gordy Larson

Thanks Gordy, I, for one, plan to watch both games.

Chicagoans Gather for Happy Hour

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Wow, now this is the type of report I love to receive. A sizable group, all having a good time and remembering to take a photo for me to share with all. Ken Yoshitani sent me this great report with a fine picture showing a bunch of smiling faces as they enjoy a gathering of our brothers and their lovely ladies. Ken writes:

The Chicago '65 group, less the Colls who were apparently in Hawaii, had our annual luncheon at Shaw's Crab House in Schaumburg, IL. The restaurant is named after the Shaw Family, and our group was treated with sumptuous appetizers after which we were all ready for a nap and desserts that many of us could not handle. We enjoyed the company, conversation and camaraderie for nearly three hours. A great time was had by all.

This photo was taken to illustrate the name of restaurant and the happy "Happy Hour" that we thoroughly enjoyed. The photo shows: Front row, Anna Croak and Izumi Yoshitani; second row, Ron Layer, Jill Seaworth, Carol Roseberg, and Bridget Eckstein; third row, Chuck Shaw and Norm Eckstein: fourth row, George Seaworth, Ken Yoshitani, and Tom Croak; and the back row, Don Shutters and John Roseberg.

Strength and Drive!


Thanks Ken. It looks like a great time was had by all.

Joe Anderson to receive the DGA

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

It is my honor and privilege to announce that our own Joe Anderson will be one of six recipients of the Distinguished Graduate Award for 2016. Several of our Classmates worked very hard with Art Hester, the POC for the effort, to put together a very impressive nominating package. The nomination letter from our President, Russ Campbell, to the West Point Association of Graduates (WPAOG) is attached for your perusal.

Art also shared a little about the process which you may find interesting:

Although there had been some conversations previously about nominating Joe for this award, this particular effort started last spring in a discussion Mitch Bonnett, Walt Oehrlein and I had at the Arvin Awards Dinner. More discussions were held at our 50th Reunion, and subsequently, Russ Campbell asked if I would serve as the POC for the effort. After numerous discussions with Walt, John Howell, Clair Gill, Bob Frank and others, I proposed a process/timeline to Russ that we followed to meet the AOG’s submission requirements.

This effort had the outstanding support of numerous classmates. Early on, Clair and Walt provided valuable information about the task and both submitted endorsement letters. John Howell, who had previous experience as a POC, gave me valuable insight on the process. Buddy Bucha, a DGA recipient himself, submitted an endorsement letter as well. Bill Birdseye did a masterful job of crafting the nomination letter from the numerous endorsement letters, Joe’s curriculum vita, and a ton of other background material that I gave him. Finally, Russ kept a steady hand on the process and personally hand-delivered the nomination package to the AOG, on time and in the manner required.

Although the final details are pending, the awards ceremony will be held at West Point on Tuesday, May 17th. There will be a parade and luncheon but sequence and timing has not been announced. This was an outstanding effort by a group of Strength and Drive guys to recognize one of our distinguished classmates. Joe well deserves this recognition and I’m proud to have been a part of the effort to make it happen.

I will share the details on the time and place of the presentation as soon as it becomes available. Below is an extract from the AOG’s announcement from which I have removed the details regarding the other 5 recipients. His assistant also provided a terrific picture of Joe looking very much the Chairman and CEO.

2016 Distinguished Graduate Award Recipient Joseph B. Anderson ’65 - As an Army officer, business leader, and WPAOG volunteer, Joseph B. “Joe” Anderson has inculcated, personified, and radiated West Point’s values. Anderson first came to “fame” as a platoon leader in Vietnam when he was featured in the 1967 documentary The Anderson Platoon, which won an Emmy and the Oscar for Best Documentary Film. Then, after stints in the Department of Social Sciences at USMA and as a White House Fellow, he started a 13-year business career at General Motors, rising to become General Director of its Body Hardware Business Unit. In 1992, he became an entrepreneur, eventually becoming the Chairman and CEO of TAG Holdings, LLC, which for several years was among the top five largest black-owned business in the United States according to Black Enterprise magazine. As a volunteer, Anderson has served WPAOG in various capacities since 1974, and is now a Diversity Strategic Advisor to the Superintendent at USMA, helping to establish the West Point Office of Diversity, Inclusion, and Equal Opportunity. According to USMA Admissions, his efforts have contributed to a 23 percent increase in applications from African-American students over the past five years.

Congratulations Joe, we are all very proud of your achievement and look forward to the actual presentation. Should you wish to send along your own congratulatory message, Joe’s e-mail address is:

A Brothers Love Reaching Out

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

I have a rather unusual request to share. A little less than eight years ago (actually, June 9, 2008) one of our brothers, Philip R. Cooper, was laid to rest in the West Point Cemetery. In the years that followed, his twin brother, Paul, has done extensive research into his brother’s life and his time in Viet Nam. As, I’m sure many of you are aware, there is a very unique and special bond between twins. Unfortunately, Phil’s letters home from Viet Nam were destroyed so Paul is left with only memories to help him with his brother’s story.

Phil’s widow, Darlene Cooper, gave Paul a copy of Bob Doughty’s magnificent book about our Class which was very helpful in filling in some of the gaps as Paul put his brothers story together. The question came up, who attended Phil’s funeral and could they be helpful in adding to this story. Unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to be any record of who attended. Darlene has asked that I reach out to the Class with the hope that those who attended the funeral will respond with an e-mail or a phone call to help in this effort.

While this is not the type of thing we normally use the listserv for, I don’t feel that it will do any harm and might help a friend in need. So, if you attended the funeral for Phil Cooper on June 9, 2008, please take the time to contact Darlene at: or 727-389-0824 or Paul Additionally, if you have any information about Phil that might be helpful to Paul, please contact either one as well.

Clair Gill to receive the Castle Memorial Award

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

I just received this terrific message from our own Joe DeFrancisco:

The West Point Society of the District of Columbia will present its prestigious Castle Memorial Award to our Classmate Clair Gill at its annual Founders Day Celebration. The award is presented annually to a USMA graduate for distinguished service in exemplifying the ideals of West Point in either a military or civilian capacity. The Society’s Founders Day will be held on March 19th at the Hilton McLean Tysons Corner in McLean, VA. The festivities which begin at 6:00PM will feature a special tribute to Vietnam War Veterans, remarks by the Superintendent and a performance by the West Point Alumni Glee Club – an organization populated with many Classmates including Terry Ryan, Jim Ferguson and Chuck Nichols to name just a few. Please come to see Clair receive a special, much deserved honor and spend an evening with Classmates and friends. You can register for the event at



Thanks Joe, and congratulations to Clair.

A special night out with Louis

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Wow, how nice to hear that our friend Louis Csoka is on the mend. Tim Timmerman sent me this great report on the dinner he and his wife enjoyed with Louis and Judy just last night.

As follow up to Christa Csoka's report, here are two pictures of Louis. The Csokas live about 400 yards from us here in Charlotte.

Photo Right: the Csokas and Timmerman's out for a nice Dinner las night. From the left; Louis Csoka, Judy Csoka, Sue Timmerman and me.

We are getting back to our old habit of Friday nights out together. It is so special to us how Louis continues to recover. Last night was even more special. We were celebrating the coming publication in the next couple of weeks of his book, "When the Pressure's On". The book is testimony to his fighting spirit and desire to get his years of work into print.

Photo Left: features the proud author himself.

Tim Timmerman

Thanks Tim. Louis you’re looking good buddy. We all look forward to when your book is published and to getting many more reports of your continued recovery.

Jerry Kelly Funeral Details

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Way back in September of last year, I appointed Paul Mlakar (class of ’66), at the request of Jerry Kelly’s family, to be our POC. He has been doing a terrific job for us and has just sent me the latest information regarding Jerry’s interment. Here are some of his comments:

... the following Classmates have indicated they plan to attend: Harter, Kennedy, Lowe, Nichols, Ryan, Shinseki (2), Taylor, Thompson, and Viani. If others will join, please let me know so the family has the right arrangements for the reception.

The family has also asked me to coordinate the contribution of the Class to a TAPS article for Jerry. Of particular interest are his time as a Cadet and early commissioned service. Gene Parker, Dan Benton, and Jack Lowe have been working on this. Other contributions are requested.

Paul 601-831-0647(C)

Additionally, Paul shared an obituary from Jerry Jr. which includes all the details (highlighted at the end) regarding the interment services to be conducted on February 18.

Dear Family and Friends,

Our beloved father and grandfather, Lt. Col. (ret’d) Jerome Edmonde Kelly, Sr., 71, a retired Army Lieutenant Colonel and one of our Nation’s wounded warriors, died September 19, 2015, in Alexandria, Virginia after a long and courageous battle with cancer.

Jerome (“Jerry”) was a longtime Alexandria resident who was born in Graceville, Minnesota. Graceville was the nearest hospital to his mother's family farm in Dumont. He was named after his father’s best friend and colleague from the Manhattan Project, Jerome Ackerman.

A 1965 graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point, he went on to complete qualifications in both Airborne and Ranger schools, as well as the Armored Officers Advance Course. He served in Germany and then was deployed to Vietnam as part of the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment ("Blackhorse Regiment"). He suffered a severe head injury during combat in June of 1968, while directing the defensive efforts of his troops' command post against a mortar attack. Jerry was awarded the Bronze Star for Valor with Oak Leaf Cluster and a Purple Heart for his actions, which were credited in saving the lives of many of his men.

After a long recovery during which he was nursed back to health by his loving wife Lee, he attended Washington & Lee University School of Law and was admitted to the District of Columbia Bar. Jerry completed his active duty career in the United States Army as a member of the Judge Advocate General Corps, with tours of duty in Virginia and with U.S. forces in Seoul, South Korea. Additional decorations include the National Defense Service Medal, the Vietnam Service Medal, the Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal, the Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with Palm, and the Army Commendation Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster.

After retiring from active duty in 1986, Lieutenant Colonel Kelly continued his service to the Nation as a civilian employee with the Department of the Army at Ft. Belvoir, Virginia until his retirement in 2006.

Jerry was a devout Catholic who loved his family, friends, and pets. He was an avid fisherman, bird watcher, and football fan. Always kind, polite and humble, his smile radiated the innocence and joy he found in life. He had a great sense of humor and was happiest while reading with one of his beloved pets nestled in his lap. Jerry's perseverance in facing, without complaint, the increasingly debilitating effects of his war injuries and cancer was a source of inspiration to family and friends. He was a hero to his family first and his Nation second.

Contact Information: Jerome (“Jerry”) Kelly, Jr. – 8736 Plymouth Road, Alexandria, VA 22308 - Mobile: 703.727.2486 or Email:

Survivors include his wife of 50 years, Lee Halloran Kelly of Alexandria; three children, Anne Louise Fruehauf (Richard) of Sewickley, Pennsylvania, Jerome (Jerry) Edmonde Kelly, Jr. (Andrea Courduvelis) of Alexandria, and Robert Halloran Kelly (Dana) of Alexandria; seven grandchildren, to include, Sarah and Sophie Fruehauf, Patrick and Christina Kelly, and Robert, Christopher, and Thomas Kelly.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on February 18, 2016 at 10:45 am at the Ft. Myer Old Post Chapel, Arlington, Virginia. Interment with full military honors will follow at Arlington National Cemetery where his parents, Army Colonel Edmonde and Genevieve Kelly, and Lee’s parents, Air Force Colonel Robert and Janice Halloran, are also buried. A reception for family and friends will follow at the Ft. Myer Officer’s Club from 12:30 pm to 3:00pm. In lieu of flowers, expressions of sympathy may be made to the Wounded Warrior Project, PO Box 758517, Topeka, KS 66675, or online at

Thank you Paul for all you are doing for us and the family.

A Farewell to Jim Hume

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Way back in July of last year, I asked Roger Griffith to take on the responsibility of being the POC (Point of Contact) for our Class and the family of Jim Hume who passed away on July 7th, 2015. Roger was quick to accept the assignment and has done an outstanding job helping the family and keeping us informed. Here now we have his final report on the activities that took place at Arlington National Cemetery last Wednesday:

On the morning of February 3rd, 2016, Family and friends gathered at the Arlington National Cemetery Administration Building for Jim Hume’s interment. The sky was gray; there was a steady drizzle and threat of thunderstorms. Family in attendance included: Jim’s widow, Michele Polinitz; Jim’s son Samuel Hume, wife, Kathleen and their daughter, Sarah, of South Coventry, Pennsylvania; Jim’s daughter Christine Hume, partner of Jeff Clark, and their daughter, Juna, of Ypsilanti, MI; a brother, Merril Hume of Arvada, CO; and sister, Patricia Flanigan, wife of James, of Washington D.C. Classmates attending were Bob and Mary Frank, Bob Wolff, Terry Ryan, Jim Ferguson, Emery Chase, Chuck Nichols, Joe Defrancisco, Clair Gill, Terry Tutchings and Roger Griffin. Members of the Alumni Glee Club were also present to take part in the service.

I preceded the attendees to the assembly area where the attendees were going to meet the members of the “Old Guard” who were going to provide full military honors for the burial. On the way I was struck by the beauty of the Cemetery as wreaths still adorn each grave marker. It appeared that the precisely aligned markers were at attention, ready to welcome Jim to his final resting place.

Speaking with the First Sergeant who was the NCOIC for the military detail and on behalf of Jim’s family I ask him to thank the soldiers for executing their duties in such inclement weather. His response was, “Sir, all of the soldiers taking part are volunteers and considered it their honor to be asked to take part and honor LTC Hume”. I also met First Lieutenant Cohan who was commanding the Escort Platoon for the ceremony. The First Sergeant had shared the Lieutenant was an Academy graduate, so I told LT Cohan that Jim was a member of the Class of 1965 and a multiple Major A winner on the Track Team. It turned out that the LT was on the Football Team and remembers meeting our own Rollie Stichweh on one of his visits. He said it would be special to take part in honoring one of our own. At 11:00, attendees followed Jim’s cremains to a staging area where members of the Old Guard were assembled.

Jim’s cremains and burial flag being placed in the casket for transport to the interment site and then the removal of the cremains and burial flag Movement to the burial was led by the Military Band, followed by the Escort Platoon, Caisson, the Casket Team and attendees. Jim’s widow, Michele, family members and many friends chose to walk behind the procession. Once at the interment site, the Casket Team removed Jim’s cremains and burial flag from the casket and in perfect step moved them to the site of the service.The Casket Team placed Jim’s cremains on the service alter and un-folded, stretched out and leveled the flag over cremains. Family members were seated under a canopy and the band played several patriotic selections. Jim had requested a non-religious graveside service, so all family members were asked to rise for honors and a rifle volley was initiated, followed by “Taps”.

Casket Team and attendees awaiting the rifle volley and “Taps”. And presentation of the burial flag.

The Casket Team proceeded to fold the flag and it was presented to Michele by the Officer-in Charge. The attending Arlington Lady also presented Michele with a condolence card on behalf of the Army Chief of Staff and herself.

Glee Club members with the Class Flag. The Alumni Glee Club members then lead all graduates in singing the Alma Mater.

The formal service was concluded by Jim’s daughter, Christine Hume, reading a heartfelt poem she wrote describing her relationship with Jim and the influences he had on her life. That brought the service to a close and the family and a few friends accompanied cemetery staff and Jim’s cremains a short distance to the actual grave site for the interment.

Christine Hume honoring Jim with a poem. Mary Frank was kind enough to take a picture of our Class of 65 attendees that caught Terry Tutchings and Clair Gill talking in ranks. Back L to R: Terry Ryan, Terry Tutchings, Clair Gill, Bob Frank, Jim Ferguson, Roger Griffin. Front L to R: Joe Defancisco, Bob Wolff, Emery Chase, Chuck NicholsThe family hosted a wonderful luncheon at the National Press Club after the interment. Toasts were made in remembrance and honor of Jim before eating. The luncheon gave Bob and Mary Frank, Bob Wolff and I a chance further interact with Jim’s family and friends. All were pleased with the ceremony at Arlington and appreciated our Class taking part.

In the first picture - back L to R: Christine’s partner Jeff Clark; Christine Hume; Sam’s daughter, Sarah Hume; Sam Hume and wife, Kathleen. The little doll in front is Juna Hume Clark, the 10-year-old daughter of Jeff and Christine. In the second picture - L to R: James Flanigan and Jim’s sister Patricia Flanigan, Jim’s widow, Michele Polinitz and Jim’s brother, Merril Hume

What a terrific job Roger has done with this report. Thank you Roger for your dedicated service to us and our dear Classmate and his family. As is my custom, here is a quick look at Jim back in the day:

Grip hands my friends as, on behalf of the entire Class, I offer Michele and her family our sincere condolences and to Jim, Be Thou at Peace – Well Done!

Louie Csoka' s Recovery

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Recently, I asked Dave Kuhn to check into Louis Csoka’s recovery and give us a report. He contacted Louie’s daughter, Christa, who provided this great report along with an appeal for support for her dad. Please take the time to send him a message of encouragement. Christs writes:

Hi, this is Christa, Louis’s daughter. Sorry I took a bit to get back to you. I had this in my Draft emails and never sent it. Anyway, I get his work emails forwarded to me (I still run his business) until he is ready to start answering them. Not quite yet as he needs to concentrate on his rehabilitation. J

He has come a LONG way and is walking with a walker (we hope for full walking capabilities by the Summer) and is doing better and better with his speech. He is fully cognizant and aware and as sharp as ever. Communicating back is his biggest issue. But they are “re-training” his brain…something close to his heart and teachings…and he improves every day and soon we won’t be able to shut him up!

I would also encourage anyone to email him even just to say Hi. He’s not able to respond just yet and I currently take the emails and put them on his iPad to read that way, but just hearing from old friends is encouragement and motivation, which of course he still needs to stay strong. Please send any messages

Hope all is well with you, too.



Thank you Christa, please consider providing a similar report from time to time. And, thank you Dave for reaching out for us.

Lunch in Indian Rocks, Florida

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

I just got this very nice note from Stan (Stas’) Genega:

Barbara and I had lunch with Cheryl and Ron Riley yesterday in Indian Rocks, Florida - had a wonderful time swapping stories and solving the problems of the world. Barbara and I (we live just outside Boston) have a condo on the Gulf in the next town over from where the Riley’s live. We visit the condo 4-5 times a year and happen to be here now for one of those visits. In the photo, its Ron and Cheryl on the left, Barbara and I on the right.

We were in the 80s three days ago and today are hoping to hit 60!


Thanks Stas’ nice report and nice temperatures, I’m jealous.

A Sad Day in the World of Army Hockey

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Jim Tomaswick sent me this notice that he received from his local West Point Society:

Dear Army Hockey Family,

It is with a heavy heart that I send you this e-mail to inform you all of the passing of my father Jack Riley. In the last week his health started to deteriorate and he spent his last few days surrounded by all of his family through his passing at 12:03pm today. My family and I are so thankful for the support through e-mails and calls that we have received from the Army Hockey Family. I would like all of you to know that one of the biggest joys in my dad's life was to have the opportunity to coach at West Point. All of his former players meant a great deal to him right to his final day. I would ask that you keep my dad and the rest of the Riley family in your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.

Here is the link to the press release at (


Brian Riley
Head Hockey Coach
Army West Point

Jack held quite a record as explained in the link to goarmywestpoint. If you follow that link, take a moment to listen to the very brief video which explains Jacks involvement with the U.S. Olympic team. He was obviously quite a guy and a real asset to our Rockbound Highland Home.

Thank you Jim.

Just Announced! The Wall That Heals 2016 Tour Dates

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Gene, Manghi forwarded this to me and I decided to make an exception to my normal rule of requiring that a story be directly related to one of our Classmates before I share it. The indirect connection here is obvious and my hope is that there are many out there who may benefit from this. Just above the picture below is a link to the schedule for 2016. If you have never seen the real wall or this traveling exhibit, I highly recommend taking the time to catch it when it comes near where you live.

I have had the privilege of seeing both. On several visits to the real wall in Washington D.C. I have learned that I am not capable of spending too much time up close to it. Each time I try to find some of my dear friends on the wall, I find myself quickly overwhelmed by emotion. The feeling is so strong; I have to step back several feet just to catch my breath. One time I even had to run from the area, leaving my wife to question what was happening. I share this, not to admit to being a wuss but to alert you to the strong emotions that can be felt when visiting the exhibit.

If you are able to visit the exhibit, please take a few pictures and share your story.

Dear Friend,

We are excited to announce the start of the 2016 tour for The Wall That Heals!

The Wall That Heals exhibit features a half-scale replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. The trailer that carries The Wall opens up to become a mobile Education Center which displays photos of service members whose names are on The Wall, along with letters and memorabilia left­ at The Wall in Washington, D.C. The exhibit will crisscross the country beginning this month, bringing healing to thousands in more than 35 communities. Each stop is a multi-day visit and the exhibit is always free and open 24 hours a day while it is in town. See the full 2016 schedule here.

Visiting The Wall That Heals is a truly moving experience and gives veterans and their families a chance to find peace in the comfort of their surroundings. It is a great opportunity for a community to come together, honor service and sacrifice, and educate younger generations about the more than 58,000 who fell in the Vietnam War.

Thanks to our generous national and community supporters, The Wall That Heals is able to move from state to state and give millions the chance to reflect and remember. Even if you can't visit, please consider donating to support our efforts to keep The Wall on the road so that we can bring it to communities across the country.

Thank you,

Jim Knotts
President and CEO
Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund (VVMF)

Preparing for Storms in New England

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Always good for a great report, Paul Schultz has come up with another one. He writes:

While we enjoy all the pictures of Classmate get-togethers in warmer climes, we thought you should see how Classmates in New England prepare for the inevitable winter storms.

The East Coast snow storm last week was a great example. Two days before the storm Gene and Bernie Manghi met Sabine and I to prepare for the forthcoming blizzard.

We wanted an equidistant drive and picked the Culinary Institute of America (the other CIA) campus in Hyde Park. The picture below is of the 4 of us with the appetizer course at The Bocuse Restaurant, discussing storm prep and other world problems (names of the menu selections are available by request).

Looking out their window, it doesn’t look too bad but we all know they got hit pretty hard when the storm arrived. By the way, nice looking appetizers and no shortage of fine wine.

It was a great day. We also learned that USMA cadets can volunteer for a 1-week hardship tour/special course at the CIA, and several have done so. They have to rise at 4:30 Am with no reveille cannon to assist and get to the kitchens for breakfast prep, etc.

Winter is almost over but we have 2 more restaurants there to use for the next storms.

Paul Schultz

Thanks Paul, as always, a very nice report.

Good News from Chuck Moseley

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Here’s a quick story that should remind most of us a thrilling time in our lives. The day we learned we were going to West Point! Chuck Mosely has just learned that his grandson Chase will be entering this summer to become a member of the class of 2020. Chuck writes:

Cathy and I are pleased to announce that our son’s oldest son Chase has been accepted to West Point and will be entering this summer in the class of 2020. Hopefully we will live long enough to celebrate some mutual five year reunions!

Photo right: A happy day was captured showing Chase with North Carolina Representative George Holding.

He was also early accepted to University of North Carolina and North Carolina State University last week but has already formally accepted West Point!

Photo Left: includes his parents Chip and Nancy Moseley.



Thank you Chuck. What a good looking kid. We wish him well as he faces the many challenges of the Academy and a life of service to this great nation.

Dick Smoak's Retirement Reception

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Today, I received this report from my old friend Mert Munson. A great report but disappointing that there don’t seem to be any photos available. Mert writes:

On Friday, January 29, 2016 I attended a very nice reception honoring our classmate Dick Smoak on the occasion of his retirement as a Federal judge. He has served the last ten years as a U.S. District Judge for the Northern District of Florida. Before that he very successfully practiced law in Panama City. I estimate about 150 people attended the reception which was held at the Art Centre in Panama City.

It was clear to me that a lot of people in that area of Florida have a very high opinion of Dick as a friend, attorney and judge. Several people spoke and made both humorous and serious remarks about Dick. One of the speakers was First Sergeant Donald Joubert (retired) who served as the first sergeant of the company Dick commanded in Vietnam. He said, "I love Dick Smoak -- and I am not gay." They served together in the 187th PIR, 101st Airborne Division. Joubert was awarded the DSC for his actions in a fight in the A Shau Valley.

Also in attendance were Dick's two daughters, Kathleen, who lives in Panama City, and Elizabeth, who lives in Vermont. Elizabeth brought along her youngest daughter, a beautiful baby named Ingrid. In case you would like to read about two of Dick's decisions as a federal judge, you can search for Richard Smoak and read the Wikipedia article about him.

Mert Munson

Congratulations Dick, we all wish you the best. And thank you Mert for keeping us posted.

No Wine Before Its Time - 29 Jan 16

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

A great report from Bob Frank about a gathering to enjoy some wine from our resident wine connoisseur, Tad Ono. Bob writes:

Many Classmates may not know that, besides being a great host (in large measure due to Hiro), Tad Ono is a superb connoisseur of wines. With that in mind, the four happy campers seen in the first photo gathered at Bob and Mary Harter's house for the sampling of one of those fine Ono-selected wines. Here we have (l to r), Bob Harter, Clair Gill, Bob Frank, and Joe DeFrancisco. Do they look just a little too happy?

In this case, the star of the show was a Margaux (2005 Chateau Kirwan), which Tad had retrieved from his highly-regarded wine cellar and presented to Joe and Lynne DeFrancisco on a visit to Hawaii in 2013. While we missed the open date by a slight bit, the wine was superb. Per Tad's instructions, the wine was left to breathe for a short bit before the four happy tipplers got to confirm that Tad had picked a gem. Each of us is now offering to help Tad empty his wine cellar before he makes the move to the Mainland, sometime in 2016. We're still waiting to hear from Tad!

How about this, Bob even provided a link to where you can get your own bottle of this magic elixir.

Thanks Bob, great report.

A visit with our Classmate Glade "Joe" Bishop in Colorado

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Three of our Classmates recently paid a visit to a fourth Classmate as he works his way back to health. My friend Bill Hecker shared this note and picture:

An update on our classmate Glade "Joe" Bishop from Bill Hecker, Les Hagie, and Bill Tredennick who recently visited with him at the MeadowView Senior Home in Greeley, CO.

Joe enjoyed visiting with us and we with him. We had a great chat about West Point as we thumbed through the 65 Class Year Book that Joe keeps in his room. We talked about roommates, recalled the classmates we knew, the Lost Fifties where Joe lived as a cadet, and events as we remembered them. Joe was in K-2 with Bill Hecker when we graduated.

Here is a photo of us: (left to right) Bill Hecker, Les Hagie, Bill Tredennick, and Joe Bishop and in front, Mac (MacArthur), Bill & Nancy Hecker's therapy dog.

Joe has been through some hard times health-wise recently but is now slowly on the mend. He lives in Greeley not too far from his sister, Janet, who watches over him. He went into assisted living back in July, and then into hospice care in mid-November when he was not doing well at all. At that point the doctors decided to simplify his medications and apparently that had a major impact on his health as he started to get better. While he is not bed ridden, it will be a while before he is playing hockey in the hall from his wheelchair.

We know he would enjoy receiving cards and notes from classmates. While he does not have email, and rarely takes phone calls, he does enjoy "snail" mail.

His address:
Mr Glade "Joe" Bishop
5300 West 29th Street, Apt 106
Greeley, CO 80634

Many Thanks,

S & D

Bill Hecker 65

Thanks Bill. It’s good to see Joe making progress. Please take the time to send Joe a card, I know it would mean the world to him.

Vietnam POWs 40 years later

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

I’m usually not big on sharing videos but this one really struck home. While I’m sure many of you have seen it before, I always enjoy seeing it again. Chuck Moseley shared it along with these comments: (if you are anything like me, you may want a box of tissues with you)

This has been around before, but I am feeling particularly patriotic today for reasons to be shared later.

At 4:31into the film, a classmate Bobby Jones is seen in a red and white Hawaiian shirt. He was a USAF pilot. (you may need two clicks to get it started)

He returned home with snow white hair in 1973 at thirty years old. I remember sitting on the den floor in North Ridge sobbing as he came off the plane and then the wonderful family reunions – not unlike the ones you see today with soldiers returning home from the Middle East – but much more special because many of their families never expected to see them again

Hard not to get misty again!


Thanks Chuck. It’s always an honor to remember the sacrifices these guys made for all of us. And a special salute to Bobby Jones, one of my heroes.

Can we help a Classmate in need? - Conclusion - The Rest of the Story

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Way back in December, I sent out a message regarding what appeared to be a very good conclusion to the problem being faced by Denny Coll’s sister, Pat, who had received a speeding ticket. She asked for assistance in finding some legal services and our Classmates came through in a big way.

Denny just sent me an even better note today saying:

As I may have mentioned to you previously, she (Pat) is a one of a kind person and very much loved by everyone in our family.

As luck would have it (or in her case, more likely the good Lord's intervention) the officer who gave her the ticket was forced to resign from the force. Not sure why.

So she got off scot-free except for some small legal bills.

Aloha! We are in Maui on some much needed R&R.

Here’s a reminder of a photo Denny previously provided.

What a charming lady (with a little bit of a lead foot). All’s well that ends well!

Working Hard to be the Last of the Best

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Wow, this is a real bonanza (or as I prefer to say Bunnanza which, by the way, is the name of my motorhome).

I have been communicating with a charming lady, Rebecca Maddux, who is the daughter of our Classmate, Phil Harper, who passed away in 1991. She has been going through many of his things and has provided me with a terrific set of pictures and information to share. While talking with her, she mentioned his efforts to become the Class “goat” – last man to graduate with our Class. I had not heard this story so I asked her to put together some of her memories of his comments about the effort and let me share it for the others out there who may not be familiar with the story. Below is what she wrote followed by many pictures which are not in any particular order. However, I’m sure they will bring back some nice memories as they did for me.

Rebecca has also been doing some research to supplement all that she has found. This included a Google search and a conversation or two with LTG (Ret) Dan Christman. I also contacted the General and it turns out that Dan was one of the authors of the TAPS article she found which is available by following this link:

Rebecca writes:

I have always known my dad was the 1965 class "goat". We have a picture of my dad shaking hands with the first man of the class Daniel Christman at graduation. I never thought much of him being the last man in the class until recently when I started reading the hundreds of letters my dad wrote to his parents, starting with his first year at West Point in 1961 through his entrance into law school in 1971. These include all the letters he sent home when he was in Vietnam documenting his time over there including his injury that paralyzed him when a collapsing building fell on him. One common theme of the letters throughout his college years, other than talking about any kind of sport, was his grades. He often wrote about struggling to keep his grades up but always assured his family he was passing and seeking help from other classmates to better his grades. Although my dad was very smart, he did struggle academically and finding out that he was near the bottom of his class was what would lead him to attempt and succeed at being the "goat". In the words of Marty Resick, "Never, never assume, however, that Phil didn't have smarts - we just don't measure 'zest for life' and 'living the moment' the same as math and chemistry finals".

In 1996, several years after my dad passed away, a few classmates wrote down their memories of my dad. My mom saved these letters and I found them when I was going through all the other letters. Mike Viani and my dad were roommates at the beginning of their first class year (August 1964-January 1965). At this point my dad was ranked within the bottom ten of the class. Mr. Viani wrote that he remembered my dad saying, "Mike, there are only ten people between me and the position of goat. I'm going for goat." Then my dad discussed each of his "rivals" as if they were competitors. He had to figure how to drop lower but not too low so he wouldn't flunk out.

Bill Hecker wrote that he remembered "how carefully he was calculating his grade point average and how to get exactly the "right" grade point on a particular test to end up last in the class". Mr. Hecker also said that he could, "Remember seeing him a number of times especially during the last half of Firstie year.... How carefully he was calculating his grade point "overage" and how to get exactly the right grade point on a particular test to end up last in the class. The competition amongst the last 2 or 3 of our classmates was serious for this exalted position. Phil had a strategy - He executed it with deliberate design. Phil really did earn it".

In my dad’s own words written to his father right before graduation, my dad tells his father that he is the last man in the class academically. He writes, "This is kind of hard to explain and I know you won't understand never having been here at graduation, but in itself is quite an honor... The thing is you see, that it is sort of the idea that this man has had to work hard and scrape by for 3.5 years, but finally has made it over the top where so many have fallen on the way up the hill. So you see it is quite a position of honor". Obviously, this must have been an interesting topic of discussion in trying to explain to your father, who has no idea about West Point traditions, that you are putting in extra effort, time, and come in last!

My dad had a strategy and succeeded in coming in last in the class. As I read more of these letters and contact classmates, men who served with him in Vietnam and friends, I am finding out that my dad was one of a kind. He was very smart, honest, and fun loving and made everyone feel like they were his best friend. As Marty Resick wrote, "I miss Phil - for all his different facets, you knew one thing - in Phil, you had a friend for life, a man for all seasons". He is truly missed and loved by all.

And here are some of the pictures Rebecca found:

Photo 3 | Photo 4 | Photo 5 | Photo 6 | Photo 7 | Photo 8 | Photo 9 | Photo 10 | Photo 11

I asked Rebecca to provide a photo so we could see who was sharing all this great stuff with us and she provided this terrific shot with her husband, Matt, and her son Philip. What a great looking family!

If you have any questions for Rebecca or have some insights into her dad that you would like to share, she can be reached at: 804-564-2601 or by e-mail

Thank you Rebecca, what a treat this has been.

Change in date for Wheels for Warriors Presentations

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

A few weeks ago I shared this message from Mary Kay Salomone:

On Friday, January 22, 2016 at 10:30 am, Operation Support Our Troops, Inc., Wheels for Warriors program will be presenting our 38th vehicle to CPT Kimberly Fix, our first woman recipient, at the Fort Myer Memorial Chapel in the Fellowship Hall. She is the daughter of Bob and Deb Fix, both USMA grads, class of 81. If any of the class would like to attend, they are most welcome. Please have them call me at 401-294-6586 by January 12th or send me an e-mail at

Due to anticipated severe weather conditions on the 22nd, the following change has been made:

Due to a severe winter storm that is to hit Washington DC on Friday, January 22nd, the presentation will now be on Thursday, January 28th, at 2pm in the fellowship room at the Memorial chapel at Fort Myer, Virginia.

Once again, I want to thank Mary Kay for the amazing work she has done with this organization and encourage anyone who can make it to attend. Don’t forget to take pictures for me to share.

A Luncheon in the Villages

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Wow, those folks in Florida sure seem to keep themselves busy. I received this nice note from Jerry Merges with a couple of great pictures. Jerry writes:

A nice cool Florida day for a luncheon. 38 grads, spouses, and friends of West Point joined together for some fun at Ruby Tuesdays in the Villages.

Photo Right: includes Peg Merges, Joy Erbes, and Carol Appler

Photo Left: includes Jerry Merges, Don Appler, Don Erbes, and Dan Steinwald in the back row with Peg Merges, Joy Erbes, Diana Steinwald in front

These folks sure know how to take advantage of their mild weather down there in that oh so flat state.

Thanks for sharing your good times.

A Chance Encounter in the Rockies

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

I received this brief note from Gerry Hoffman which suggests to me that he is somewhere in Colorado. However, I see that his home is listed as Houston, Texas. Several phone calls to him and one to Steve Ammon were unsuccessful in getting the rest of the story so I guess we will just take it at face value. Gerry writes:

Greetings from our snowbound Rocky Mountain home. Michele and I were having lunch at a local Silverthorne Pub and in walked Steve Ammon, his beautiful wife and their three offspring and sat down next to us. They were on their way to a skiing holiday in Vail. We had a short but very nice visit. He mentioned his pleasant encounter with John Swensson, meeting by chance at the same restaurant where John was celebrating his Mother's 95th birthday in D.C. John is now on a cruise with his grandchildren out of Long Beach Calif.

Thanks Gerry, it’s always nice to hear of these chance encounters. I guess it’s true, we’re everywhere.

The Passing of Jim Hume - follow up
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Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Way back in July of last year, you were notified of the passing of our dear Classmate, Jim Hume. At that time Roger Griffin stepped up to take on the responsibilities of POC (Point of Contact) for us. It was and is the wish of his family that he be interred in Arlington National Cemetery. Unfortunately, these things take time and only now are we able to share the following details for that interment which will occur on February 3rd. Roger provided this report:

Those wishing to attend should meet at the Arlington Administration Building before 11:00 on Wednesday the 3rd of February. There will be a designated room inside the Administration Building where friends and family can meet and wait until the ceremony begins. The Ceremony is scheduled to begin at 11:00 and will depart from the Admin Bldg. It will be Full Military Honors with a short grave side service.

The family has invited those in attendance to a luncheon the family will host at the National Press Club following the service. The address for the Press Club is:

529 14th Street NW
Washington, DC 20045

The closest parking for those attending the luncheon is Quick Park, located at 1301 Pennsylvania Avenue. This parking is 2 blocks due south of the National Press Club

If you are planning to attend the luncheon, please e-mail Roger Griffin at so he can let Jim's family know how many can be expected.

Warmest Regards -


Thank you Roger for a continuing job well done.

Another 50th Anniversary Party

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Jim Berry sent a very nice set of pictures taken during his and his beautiful wife, Margie’s, 50th Anniversary Party.

Photo Left: Jim and Margie with some pretty good looking hors d’oeuvres in the background

Next is a picture with their 3 children and Margie’s 94-year-old mother. Wow, beautiful ladies and son sure looks like dad.

Photo Right: here are 12 of the 13 the grandchildren (one couldn’t make the picture)

Jim and Margie were married on December 20th, 1965. As Jim put it, “it’s been a great 50 years!!!”

Thanks Jim, good stuff and a beautiful family.

Update on Ring Recovery

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

As you know there has been much work and conversation on the subject of the ring found on EBay. While that work continues, our Class President, Russ Campbell, has chosen to give you this update on our progress to date. He writes on behalf of the entire Leadership Team:

To the Distinguished West Point Class of 1965

Gentlemen, We wish to provide you an update on the found Class ring. Members of the Leadership team have received e-mails from 35 Classmates or relatives concerning lost or stolen rings. Many e-mails included descriptions of their rings, date and location lost, plus stories and circumstances. We have narrowed the search for the original owner of this ring based upon this information, but we still do not have conclusive identification. At least 9 classmates have described a blue stone of one type or another.

Please go to the end of this update and check out the pictures in the attachment, and let us know if you think there is a connection. Currently the Ring Recovery Program continues the effort to identify the original owner, and their progress report is as follows:

Subject: Class of 1965 and '65 Ring
To: Russell Campbell <>
From: USMArings Ring Recovery Program <>


Here is an update.

Our professional analysis with the ring in hand:

1965 West Point class ring, very heavy wear, likely worn on a daily basis for 30-50 years. Not a ring that was lost in 1970.

Looks to perhaps have been resized once in its life.

Stone is a dark blue, closed back ring, also with heavy wear. Smooth surface on stone. Sapphire?

Ring originally engraved with name but it appears a possibly deliberate attempt was made to remove the name. Name is functionally illegible; only faint traces of letters remain.

Ring was sold by an auction house in New York, then resold on eBay.

1965 class rings were made by L.G. Balfour. Whomever removed the name also appears to have removed the maker's mark and the gold symbol as well.

We expect a polishing dremel tool may have been used.

We are going to attempt another set of photos using some advanced photo processing techniques and see if it can help reveal the name.

Current photos:

The cost of recovery is $2,550, which includes EBay auction results, shipping, insurance, and handling. We will make a donation in this amount to the Ring Recovery Program from the Class Admin Account. Once we know the identity of the owner, then we'll determine how to reimburse the Admin Account.

As always, your thoughts and input are welcome.

Strength and Drive,
Your Class Leadership Team

Should you have thoughts or ideas to share, please feel free to respond directly to this e-mail or to any one of the members of the Leadership Team.

Shout Out in the Pointer View

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Cathy Kilner (’90), Associate Director, Class Services with the AOG, shared with several of our Leadership Team, this page from the Pointer View which can be viewed by following this link - I found it interesting especially because it clearly connects several of our Classmates and, in fact, our entire Class to the class of 2015.

Bob Frank added that this event marks the official end of our Affiliation Program. However, our connection and support of the class of 2015 will continue as needed.

Van Presentation in the DC Area

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Mary Kay Salomone, who has done so much amazing work with Operation Support Our Troops, Inc., Wheels for Warriors, has asked me to share an opportunity that will be coming up in the D.C. area very soon. She writes:

Happy New Year.

I just wanted to ask you to please share with the class of '65 the news that on Friday, January 22, 2016 at 10:30 am, Operation Support Our Troops, Inc., Wheels for Warriors program will be presenting our 38th vehicle to CPT Kimberly Fix, our first woman recipient, at the Fort Myer Memorial Chapel in the Fellowship Hall. She is the daughter of Bob and Deb Fix, both USMA grads, class of 81. If any of the class would like to attend, they are most welcome. Please have them call me at 401-294-6586 by January 12th or send me an e-mail at

Thanks so much,
Mary Kay Salomone

If any of you in the area can make it please give Mary Kay and CPT Fix, the support they so richly deserve. Additionally, if you can make it, please share with me a few photos that I can, in turn, share with the Class.

Recognizing One of our Own






Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Gene Manghi sent me this brief but very appropriate note which serves as a reminder that there are some pretty great people in our ranks.

At a recent visit to the East Orange, New Jersey VA, I took these pictures in the lobby. Read the last line on the plaque.

Recognition is expressed in many ways.

Gene Manghi

Thank you Gene. It’s always a pleasure to share recognition of greatness. For me, the key word here is “Honor”.

Another Anniversary

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

I just received this nice response to the message I sent out regarding my anniversary. Bob Fritz wrote that he and his wife, Patricia, just celebrated their 49th anniversary on December 30th with an

almost same meal at The Capital Grill in Naples, Florida. We met while I was in pilot training at Moody Air Force Base in February 1966 and married in December.

Their meal consisted of beef tenderloin and lobster but they had the good sense to take some home in a doggie bag. They also sent along a nice picture taken at the table. What a good looking couple.

Thank you for sharing that Bob.

By the way, this gives me an opportunity to share part of the story from my anniversary that I forgot. As we entered the restaurant, a young man noticed the crest on my blazer and came over to our table to introduce himself. He is a young XO of a Stryker Brigade stationed at Ft. Lewis (Class of 2012). I have said it before and I’ll say it again hear. There are many reasons for us old soldiers to grumble about how the Corps has gone to hell but the bottom line is that it continues to turn out very impressive officers who make me very proud and confident that our Army is in good hands.

My Turn

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Tonight, my beautiful lady, Donna, and I, celebrated the 50th anniversary of our original marriage on January 1st, 1966. As many of you know we had a few rough spots along the way, one of which resulted in divorce and then remarriage about four years later. One of my favorite lines is that “the divorce wasn’t working out”. Anyway we remarried and have been very happy for more than twenty years following that bump. Tonight we celebrated with a nice dinner at popular restaurant in Tacoma (Stanley and Seafort’s) which has a spectacular view of the city and the working Port of Tacoma which was my home base for many years with a steamship company. Here we are just after a sumptuous meal which included prime rib, lobster, giant prawns, and salmon. Is it any wonder my belt size and IQ fight for dominance.

One good thing about our situation is that we have another anniversary coming up in April to celebrate the remarriage.

2015 Football Final Report Card

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Gordy Larson has provided a few (kidding, of course) words to wrap up the 2015 Football Season for our Black Nights. Once again he demonstrates the ability to see so many things that most of us miss. As I look this over, the one thing I see is a reason for optimism that next year we can finally hope to see the end of a terrible streak. Gordy writes:

Final Report Card 2015

The 2015 season is over and the 2-10 record was disappointing, but now it’s that time of year when we look back at what has been and try to look forward to what is to be. In this article we take a look at the good and the bad of the Offense, Defense, and Special Teams performance and identifies players who have stood out in each area.


The offense struggled for most of the season but improved significantly in the last three games. The team scored an average of 22.1 points per game, ranking them 109th in the FBS. The best offensive performance of the season came against Eastern Michigan when the Black Knights scored 58 points and racked up 556 yards rushing. The low point of the season is shared between the Duke game and the Air Force game where the offense was held to 3 points in each game. Against Duke the offense was held to 113 yards rushing and 55 yards passing, and against AFA the offense was held to 124 yards rushing and 45 yards passing.

Overall Performance: Army’s 338 yards per game of total offense ranked 110th in the FBS. The Black Knights ranked 123d in First Downs with 189; 101st in 4th down conversions with a .409 conversion percentage; and 105th in Red Zone Offense with a .774 scoring percentage. The offense finished dead last in the FBS in plays that gained over 10 yards. On a positive note, the offense was 26th in 3d down conversions with a .446 conversion percentage.

Click here to read the full report.

Terry Ryan's Retirement

Classmates, Wives, and Friends of '65,

Chuck Nichols provided this terrific report on the retirement party for our own Terry Ryan that took place on the 29th. Chuck writes:

On Tuesday evening over 100 people gathered at the Dulles Hilton for a dinner to celebrate Terry Ryan’s retirement as Executive Director of ESI (Engineers and Surveyors Institute), a position he has held for over 17 years. The Distinguished Class of 1965 was represented by Jim and Karen Ferguson, George and Sue Gehringer, Pete Linn and Chuck Nichols. The entire Ryan clan was there (less two young grandchildren who were with a baby sitter) including: Terry and Nancy Ryan; Terry’s brother Tim; oldest son Shan and grandchildren Connor, Kendrick and Emerson; and son Seth and wife Cindy.

Photo Left: we have the family, (L to R) Tim, Shan, Nancy, Connor, Cindy, Emerson, Terry, Kendrick, Seth (I even see our Class flag in the background)

And then a very nice picture of Terry with his beautiful wife Nancy.

In addition to family and close friends there were a number of industry representatives as well as principals from several local and state agencies that work closely with ESI. The featured entertainment was provided by the West Point Alumni Glee Club with Jim Ferguson, Pete Cahill and Terry Ryan as singing members and Chuck Nichols providing the audio/visual support. In addition Sid Dewberry of Dewberry Consultants, who couldn’t attend personally, provided a 10 minute recorded interview with Terry that highlighted Terry’s career and provided an answer to the question of why Terry never became a heavy lift helicopter pilot, one of his dreams growing up. The Ryan family paid tribute to Terry ending with Kendrick singing a song that Terry would sing to her to send her off to dreamland when she was much younger, “Careless Love.”

We planned to get a group picture of classmates and their wives but unfortunately in the confusion at the end of the dinner activities half of the classmates rushed off. Instead we took a group picture of the Ryan family in attendance.

Photo Right: the West Point Alumni Glee Club with key members pointed out

Finally an amazing picture from the Dewberry interview showing Terry in Saudi Arabia while working for the Corps of Engineers.

This was indeed a fitting tribute to a man who has done so much for his country – in and out of uniform – and a husband, father and grandfather.

Happy New Year to all!

Thank you Chuck. With all that Terry has done for our Class, the Alumni Glee Club, the Army, and our nation, I agree that this is a fitting tribute to a guy who doesn’t do anything half way. Well done, my friend, I salute you!