220th Reconnaissance Airplane
and all Friends and Brothers in
in memory of those who have
Welcome to Gary Tragesser, Mike Donnick, Kenneth D. Wiley
(Catkiller 26; no e-mail), and Robert Andrew Bergren (Catkiller
The latest e-mail listing, Catkiller Group Mailing
List, is available in text format, if needed. E-mail CATCOM EdPub
or Bob McComiskie for a copy.
To restate the specifics: 220th
Reconnaissance Airplane Company REUNION
October 19, 20, 21, 2003
Palace Station Hotel & Casino
West Sahara Ave
Las Vegas, NV
Reunion 6 -
Paul V. Brennan
Reunion 5 -
John Hillman (Executive in
Reunion 4 -
Jerry Bonning (Logistics) Rooms, hotel, meeting rooms,
Reunion 3 -
Jerry DiGrezio (Operations; notifications, etc.)
Keeper of the E-List
- Bob McComiskie (send your changes and updates to Bob)
"Beans" Brett (Sundowner Yankee)
GUEST SPEAKER: We hope to have an announcement
We have reserved a block of rooms under: "220th
RECONNAISSANCE AIRPLANE COMPANY" (CATKILLERS). Please state this when you make
your reservations. Cost of rooms: $69 per night. You can make
reservations now! Contact Paul V.
Brennan (Reunion 6) with questions, suggestions,
REUNION RECON (ADVANCED PARTY):
Some members of the planning committee are meeting at Las
Vegas in June, as an advanced party to gather information and make necessary
arrangements, and anyone who wants to come is invited. The dates are June
6-8, at the Palace Station Hotel. If you plan to attend and want reservations,
just mention the Catkiller Reunion and seek the same room deal we have in
October. For further information, contact Jerry DeGrezio, Jerry
Bonning, John Hillman, or Paul Brennan.
REGARDING CONTACTS WITH FORMER CATKILLERS NOT ON
THE E-MAIL LIST:
If you know of other former members of the 220th RAC who are
not on our mailing list but who might have an interest in attending the reunion
in October, please do all you can to encourage their participation. If nothing
more, you could let them know about our web site and newsletter. We need each of
you there, in Las Vegas, to have an enjoyable, all-inclusive reunion. We were
brothers-in-arms, members of an unique aviation unit, and jointly bound in
history by experience and circumstance. No matter what our rank or position,
each member was important to the mission (there is a sobering analogy to this
statement that uses a tiny cotter pin as a teaching point to
spotlight the importantance of individual attention to detail required
to win a war). Please note, too, that none are wearing insignia of
rank, or boasting of a loftier position than another. No, on the contrary;
we recognize how good it is to have the privilege of making a hotel
reservation, making the trip to Las Vegas, and finally meeting and greeting one
another, on a first-name basis. We also look forward to honoring those who did
not make it back or who will not have a chance to make their decision to attend.
Please phone or write to that missing Catkiller, and personally invite him
to our/his reunion for some good fun and fellowship.
ANNOUNCEMENT IN U. S. ARMY JOURNAL:
There is an announcement of our reunion posted in the above
journal, and the link is:
MOTORCYCLE RIDE IN (OR TOO) VEGAS,
Jerry DiGrezio mentioned something about taking a poll for
interest in renting motorcycles for a ride during the reunion. There are several
points of interest north, south, and east, and the fresh air and scenery
would be enough to interest any who ride. If you think this is a good idea, let
Jerry know. My own plan is to ride my Goldwing all the way from
Tennessee (wife will fly), and Don Pepe said he might make that trip, too. With
enough interest, we can have a formation of (slightly older and hopefully more
mature) Catkillers flying low, again. A short ride up to Mount Charleston
Wilderness Area (northwest), Hoover Dam (south), or a longer ride up to Zion
National Park (about 160 miles, one way, to the northeast) might suit your
roaming spirit. My wife and I enjoyed a rental car side trip up to Mt.
Charleston on our last visit, but a trip down to and inside Hoover Dam might
also peak your interest. Have water, will travel! Thanks for the suggestions,
Don Ricks has a photo page that has a link to Scott's
Catkiller Home Page: Within the last month, I added several
Again, there are new photos posted, including three of Alan
Perhaps some of you more detail oriented readers might notice
the improved version of the Catkiller crest (graphic name is ckcrest.jpg)
atop this page. I spent about three days reconstructing and painting this
graphic for a special purpose. We all own this crest, so feel free to use it as
you desire. There is no copyright on the item.
The special purpose I have in mind is to produce stickers and
transfers, both simple colored and reflective
type, and I am in contact with a company in California that will produce a test
run of these stickers for evaluation. I will cover the cost of the initial
investment and will offer the items at cost, plus mailing, to anyone who desires
to have one or more. The initial setup costs seem fair and reasonable, and later
on the more I order the less they will cost.
While my motive for undertaking the project is for my own
personal use, I believe you will be happy with the results and will want to
order some for your children's (or grandchildren's) book bags, etc., your
motorcycle, helmet, automobile window or bumper, or whatever. I will make up an
HTML briefing page, with a photo of the results, when I receive them. Don
Typical letter sent to relatives, from the commander,
upon assignment to 220th RAC (courtesy of Johnny Moore):
220th Reconnaissance Airplane Company
212th Combat Support Aviation Battalion
2 Nov 1968
Mr. and Mrs. J. T. Turnbow Jr.
Leachville, Ark. 72438
Dear Mr. and Mrs. Turnbow:
Your son, Jim, was assigned to my unit...on 1 November 1968.
The company is located at Phu Bai, in the northern part of the Republic of
Vietnam. Collocated in this part of the area are elements of the 101st Div, 1st
ARVN Div, US Marines, Navy, and Air Force.
The 220th RAC utilizes the O-1 "Birddog," a light,
single-engine, reconnaissance aircraft. This unit has been in Vietnam since June
1965, and is known throughout Vietnam as the "Catkillers." We support the XXIV
Corps in their area of operation by providing day and night visual
While your son is with this unit, be assured that he will have
available the best food, clothing, and medical care the Army can
If you ever have any questions or require my assistance,
please feel free to write me at this address:
APO San Francisco 96308
James M. Wisby
UNIT ORDERS, LISTS AND OTHER
Thanks to Johnny Moore, here are abstracts from a few unit
orders. These names might bring back or and reawaken your lost
Unit Orders No. 74; 220th RAC, dated 18 September 1969;
signed by Raymond G. Gebhardt, MAJ, IN: [extract]
Paragraph (Para) 1. Individuals (SSAN omitted) authorized
to start, warm up, on the ground, type aircraft indicated: O-1
SP5s: Ervin F. Bradley, Francis Fetera, Felipe P. Garcia, and
Johnny C. Moore
SP4s: Gary N. Anderson, Billy W. Bebieff, Tony C. Boothby,
Daryl R. Broberg, Randolph A. Brown, Louis C. Chaki Jr., Sergio Chong, Barry L.
Kime, Joseph N. Robinson, William A. Snyder, and Leslie G. Whalon.
Individuals authorized to taxi O-1 and U-6 aircraft during
night and day hours:
SP5s: Henry R. Wessels, Wayne Woytowich.
Para 3: Following individual appointed:
Robert M. Boutwell, ILT, IN, appointed to Property Book
Officer for 220th RAC and 134th Medical Detachment, APO SF 96308
Unit Orders No. 195, Hqs., 212th Combat Aviation
Battalion; dated 24 October 1969; signed by Paul J. Florio, MAJ, IN:
Para 3: Aircraft Crewman Badge awarded (220th
SSGs: Kenneth W. Miller
SP5s: Johnny C. Moore, Felipe P. Garcia, Leslie G. Whalon,
Barry L. Kime.
SP4s: Tannie Ellison, William Snyder, Joseph N. Robinson, John
Vandever, and Randolph Brown.
PFCs: Dennis W. Plante and Keith A. Suffield.
Assigned to 220th RAC: Larry D. Oltjenbruns, 1LT, AR
Para 4: Appointed Investigation Officer: Daryle A. Wesley,
CPT, FA, 220th RAC. To investigate US Army aircraft accident involving 0-1G
airplane, serial number 51-4810, 21st Avn Co, on or about 0215 hours, 23 Sep
Special Orders 157, Hqs, 212th CAB, dated 15 August
1969, signed by Paul J. Florio, MAJ, IN: [extract]
To be SP5: Charles M. Cole, Wayne Woytowich, and Johnny C.
Moore, all of 220th RAC.
More abstracts to follow next month.
Don Ricks has a sales contract on his home and will move by
the end of the month (with no place to go, yet), so hold on to items for the
April CATCOM (but which I will still TRY to publish). I'll be busy doing
relocation duties, but there is no change in e-mail address or cell phone
number. I'll still be reading e-mail traffic, via a laptop.