220th Reconnaissance Airplane Company
Second Quarterly 2005 CATCOM E-Newsletter
(updated June 24, 2005, afternoon)
and all Friends
and Brothers in Arms,
in memory of those who have served
Some of the comments regarding the writing program instituted by Colonel Jack Mullen make interesting reading and are inserted below for your enjoyment:
From the troops:
"Dear Jack... Below are a few thoughts from three of the guys who participated in the "essay requirement" which you may find interesting. One of these men might even have been the fellow who greeted you in the hallway of Snow Hall. I hope you had a great Easter.
"Thanks Ed Miler for the comments from LTC JACK MULLEN. Just for the record, it was MIKE SHARKEY who went nuts over the essay requirement. I think John Kovach will remember it. I remember all of us sitting in the club wondering if we could pay someone to write the paper for us. No one trusted anyone to write a paper in the end. We knew the smart guys like Jim Hudson and Stranger could do it but in the end we all did it ourselves.
When were you CO of the 220th. I remember Paterson and Wisby and can't quite remember the CO I server under for about 12 hours. Grayson, Bounds and I arrived the night of his going away party. I was involved in the Officer writing program while at the 220th but can't remember if "Bend with the wind" started while I was at the 62nd. Your name is familiar. Damn I hate getting old. You know this is bad but, the thing I remember most about Col Mullen is he loved to quote Shakespeare, problem was he ran out of fresh quotes after the second visit.
I should remember a month out of one of the most interesting years of my life (you would think). Glad to here from you. You know it was really great to see Wisby at the reunion. You know that after I got over the time and place issues of the officers writing program it was a help. I had not yet been to college and that one assignment did make a difference. That damn "bend with the wind" policy is another story. I was ops officer at the 62nd and just about the time 24th Corps needed something the whole Bn. was out bending. The problem was the bending was a lot like a long lunch and like most places the second part of our day was starting while Bn was taking a nap. Have not thought about that in years.
Catkiller 44/33 April 68-Apr 69 at 220th May 69 -Nov 69 at 62nd. Coachman 2/3."
I may have the letter you mentioned. Believe it or not, I have the essay I wrote; I believe LTC Mullen may have even recognized me by name. I dont know that I was one of those who railed against the program I have to think I was, I complained about anything and everything! but I have always loved writing so I would imagine that I might have viewed his writing program as a challenge.
Thanks for the memory.
From the Commander, Jack Mullen:
Holy Mackeral!! Who'd have thought anyone would remember. "Oh, what fools these mortals be!" I'm with the guy whose memory gaps away. I call it sometimeshimers. I enjoyed the photos of those intrepid aviators! We used to brag that we could fly anything the army had . . . if we could get the crew chief to start it. Now, I can't picture myself trying to round out to a three point landing. I am glad to hit most chairs dead center. (Can it be that we are all really young men in old bodies?)
I don't try to rationalize the things I said and did in my lost and forgotten youth, ED.(I may not have always been right, but I was never wrong!) I had a hell of a time. I enjoyed all of my jobs in two and a half years in RVN from advisor to S-1 to commanding both a company and the battalion, and it has to be because I saw the best emerge from so many really great people. (I even enjoyed most of the other jobs I lhad in the Army.) You have triggered some streams of consciousness that have long lain dormant. Good fun. I hope that you and all those old young guys are having as good a life as I am.
Best wishes to all, Jack
Former Catkiller Commander Ned Miler sent these notes and a photo from Col. Mullen:
Catkillers: Below is a photo sent to me by Col Jack Mullen, CO, 212th CASB, with one of his eight grandchildren
"Remember the movie Hook when one of the lost boys looked deeply into Williams face, traced his features gently with his fingers and then exclaimed, "Oh, There you are Peter!" Thanks for photo. I still remember the way you looked sitting on top of the building on the flight line. :}
Like Pan, I never really wanted to grow up, and the family joke here is, "What are you going to be when you grow up, Dad?" and my reply is always, "I'm not going to face that problem until I have to!" (It is getting difficult not to notice the color of the beard.) I find it handy now because it reduces the shaving project to manageable proportions, but, you know, the first couple of times I tried facial hair I couldn't stand to see myself in a store window. The first was during the Centennial celebration in Killeen after I had graduated from the Army. It is old hat now, and my wife likes it! Oh, yes, that lovely child is one of my 8 grandchildren.
Take care. Jack [Mullen]
This announces the date for the 2005 Quiet Aircraft Association Reunion, sent in by Dale Ross Stith:
Please click on the following link for a Word for Winsows file containing information and information:
Jerry Bonning sent in this information on how to obtain some of the Catkiller wine pictured below:
"The wine is from Windsor Vineyards in Healsburg, CA. Some of the wine is better than others but it has ranged from good to excellent. I suppose that that your feeling about a particular variety effect the response.
The lady handling the Catkillers is Kathy Givens. (800) 289-9463 ext 5304. The problem with the wine is they can only ship to about half of the United States. Bud's wine is coming here, because Pa. will throw someone in jail if you tried to ship there. Kentucky, a fourth degree felony to ship there. West Virginia, on the other hand, is a reciprocal state, and there are no limitations on W.Va. shipments. I can't speak for the rest of the country. They get around MI and Ohio by having a distributor in those states, who reships to individuals, same with FL. Call and see what you can work out. By the way, I get a commission on the sale. They send me a bottle or two, depending on the order. I did not ask for this. I tried to get them to lower the price, but she said I could get the wine, or not, but the price was the same. My response was well....!
This came from Ed Miler a few days ago:
I found this old article from the "Observer", dated 25 April 1969 which may interest you. Apparently this was a MACV publication. There are other photos which I may scan and send later.
|SAIGON (MACV) - Imagine what it must have been like to have been a World War I "flying ace." Think of the vintage aircraft, the esprit de corps, the lack of sophisticated instruments to direct flying under poor weather conditions. The pilots of World War I flew "by the seat of their pants."
The 220th Reconnaissance Airplane Company (RAC), of the 212th Combat Support Aviation Battalion, at Phu Bai, brings back memories of those early days of Army aerial warfare. The "Cat Killers'" job is visual reconnaissance --keeping an eye on the enemy in northern I Corps.
The 220th's aircraft, O-1 Bird Dogs, are almost "vintage," the last one having been built in 1957. The slow-moving Bird Dogs are, none the less, well-suited for their reconnaissance mission. The rockets they carry mounted under the wings are primarily used to mark targets.
World War I pilots sometimes threw a farewell salute to an enemy aviator whose smoking aircraft plunged to earth for the last time. One of the "Cat Killers" exchanges a salutory wave with one particular NVA soldier whenever the pilot flies over the enemy's position. That soldier knows that because the "Cat Killers" are aware of his presence, his days are numbered.
As for esprit de corps, few units can match the camaraderie which exists among the officers and men of the 220th RAC, commanded by Major Edward H. Miler.
Until the cessation of allied air activity north of the Demilitarized Zone, prior to the Nov 1, 1968, bombing halt, the pilots of the 220th RAC had served as Tactical Air Controllers, Airborne (TACA) over North Vietnam. They were aware of enemy troop and supply movements before the agressors were able
|to enter South Vietnam. Because of the perception of the 220th, much of the enemy movement was halted before it was able to cross the DMZ.
Since the halt of air operations north of the DMZ, the "CatKillers" area of operation has become northern I Corps, south of the Ben Hai River. Their original mission was strictly visual reconnaissance. The mission has been expanded to include directing air strikes, artillery and naval gunfire and to fly cover for friendly convoys.
The 220th RAC flies in support of the U. S. Army, Navy, Marines, and ARVN.
According to Captain Quinton D. Anderson Jr., operations officer, "It's kind of an unwritten rule around here to help the guys on the ground as much as we can."
As adventursome and expert as are the pilots of the 220th RAC, they could never accomplish their mission without the professional assistance of the crew chiefs [here, here!!] who service the Bird Dogs on the gropund. Though they are responsible only for first-echelon maintenance, "each crew chief knows everything about his own aircraft," said Specialist 5 Morris Buster, a crew chief.
The 220th sheet metal shop repairs structural damage done to the sircraft, thereby eliminating the necessity of transporting damaged aircraft southward for repair.
An avionics crew administers all radio repairs. The Bird Dog is equipped with a radio with FM, UHF and ADF (automatic direction finder) capabilities. "The longest we've ever had an aircraft on the ground because of radio difficulty has been one day," Specialist Buster asserted.
"It's a fascinating business," concluded Captain Glenn Strange, company intelligence officer.
This is from the desk of Sarge Means, a strong man who endured the army for 39 years!
Family, friends and neighbors:
"I guess the time has come to close the door, shut off the light, and pass around a Lowenbrau: My Uncle has told me I'm too old and it's time to stay at home and harass Steph full time!!!
With that in mind, herewith is the official notification of the end of a pretty rewarding career. I realize many of you won't be able to make the ceremony or the party but at least you know you were thought of. If you happen to be in the neighborhood on May 26 I certainly hope you'll come by either Fort Myer or our house; we'd love to see you at either or both locations.
As I run over the list of addressees I see a lot of memories, and a lot of years, and I can't help but think, Man, some of you are really old!!! I thank you for being on the list because it means that you have enriched my, and our, life. Frankly, I don't know what the Army has been about if it isnt friendship. And for those in my previous life, I thank you for sticking with me lo these many years. For some of you, if it weren't for the Army sending me to your vicinity, we might never have gotten to re-une with each other, and that would have been a pity. For those of you who stay in touch in our future life: Watch out, we may be needing a place to stay and we're coming to your town!!!
Wishing you all the very best, and hoping to see you soon,
Sarge, (and Steph, too.)
I don't know when I'll be closing down this e-mail site obviously it's very soon -- so for the sake of safety, please add firstname.lastname@example.org to your e-dress book. "
This is an added comment from Sarge, just to show the caliber of our finest human flesh we have had representing these last 39 years:
"I wish you, and so many more Catkillers, could be in attendance.
Believe it or not, my unit coordinated to have a reporter from Soldiers magazine come out for my last flight last Friday. He took photos and then we did a sit down interview. When he asked what was the one memory that jumped to mind after all these years, I answered without hesitation, "My year in VN." Don't know what that says about my last 35 years but to me it speaks volumes about those guys with whom I served years ago.
This note and photo came from Charles Finch, with the subject line: SARGE MAKING ME ATTEND HIS RETIREMENT:
Back in PHU BAI (by the scheduling board in 1969). No comments about my weight. Jesse fed us too much starch in the mess hall.
Off to DC for Sarge's ceremony...39 years is a long time in the Army. At least Means was in aviation. Will send photos.
Catkillers and Marines:
Three Catkillers made it to Washington DC on Thursday, May 26, to honor CW5 Sarge Means. The ceremony took place at Fort Myer, Virginia. the 3rd United States Infantry (the Old Guard) and the US Army Band (Pershing's Own) were the participating units.
I sent some representative pictures in earlier emails that hopefully captured some of the beautiful day we had. Sarge's entire family was there, as well as more friends than I can list. When you spend 39 years on active duty (just like two careers), and have the personality of a Sarge Means, many traveled near and far to honor his remarkable service. The Memorial Day weekend made the ceremony even more memorable. The Old Guard are the ones who you may have seen this weekend putting the miniature flags on every cross in the Arlington Cemetery. There were flags all over our route to fort myers which seemed so appropriate for the means retirement. sarge and i discussed our fallen catkiller brothers mac byrd and lee harrison as we drove to the parade field.
the ceremony was spectacular in every way. the old guard puts on the best show and as one soldier told me, "this parade field is the most popular place in the military to retire".
the rest of the day was spent at sarge's house where his daughter carrie and wife stephanie hosted a large party. bud, grayson and i were grateful to be able to honor sarge for all of us who were fortunate to serve in vietnam with him. sarge was the last catkiller to leave active duty and for many of us who have been close to him for these many years it was not only a celebration of his accomplishments but a reaffirmation of how strongly the military service bonds us all.
we all saluted sarge on his most distinguished career. he was a gifted combat aviator, skilled instructor pilot and instrument examiner who made everyone better in the cockpit by his teachings. he was extremely popular with all of the soldiers and their families and managed to care for their lives as much as he did his.
sarge was blessed to have a fabulous wife and family that supported him so strongly in his career. particularly since he was constantly away from home so much in 39 years.
i am so proud of sarge means and his family for their service to our country. i know you join me in the appreciation of his impressive career and wish him only the best of luck in the future.
happy memorial day everyone.
Charles and Nancy Finch
Here are some representative photo. For more, contact Charles Finch:
This is another photo and discussion from the files of Charles Finch, Catkiller 19: I'll add any comment that helps identify these men (Charles is the captain with the hat). Charles Finch is a steady contributor to this newsletter, and we learn more and more history from his efforts. Thanks, Charlie!
"Found this last week. Was the night (July 12, 1969 I think) Marines had a going away party for me. Still have the Super C Cape. Who are the rest of the Marines? I recognize Phipps, the second from the left, and Wagner, between Goodspeed and me. Clint Smith is third from the left.
Bobby Goodspeed is Catkiller on the far right. He died several years ago.
Clint Smith had this to say:
"Can't place the Marine on the far left. He was only with us a few months I think. The fourth from the left is Jeff Granwhier (?).Have lost touch with him. Charlie, who is the guy with the big nose hanging over your right shoulder? Something about that guy is familar. Could that be Tango? Great pic. Glad you located it.
Another message from Clint:
"This is really bringing back memories Guys. I have a few pics and the old flight log residing in a footlocker in our barn in Alabama. Coincidentially it is only about 40 miles from Ft Rucker. Next time I am home I plan to diligently search for them.
That party with the Catkillers was definitely my best emotional release while in country. It must have been a special time for all of us to remember it so well. 'Course in my case some of the memories are a tat distorted due to multiple cans of cold beer.
I'm still involved in DOD R&D work. Going this morning in fact to the annual Spec. Ops. Week Show here in Tampa. What a room full of goodies that is. There is tons of stuff we could have put to good use in Northern I Corps.
Sarge, one of my buddies here is a CWO-4 aviator in the National Guard. He has given me an even greater appreciation of your accomplishments as a CWO-5 and, esp., over such a terrific career.
The best to each of you,
Clint Smith '69"
Another comment from Landon K. Thorne:
"Marine-on-left's last name was Carter. I'd have to dig to get his first name, but I think I have our TBS book. He was in my Arty Class at Sill, but was an OJT AO.
(Landon K. Thorne)"
Finally, here is a listing provided by Leon Skeen, for the various branches of service, telling how their combatants fight (author unknown, obviously a Marine):
US Marine Corp Rules for Gunfighting
1. Be courteous to everyone, friendly to no one.
2. Decide to be aggressive ENOUGH, quickly ENOUGH.
3. Have a plan.
4. Have a back-up plan, because the first one probably won't work.
5. Be polite. Be professional. But, have a plan to kill everyone you meet.
6. Do not attend a gunfight with a handgun whose caliber does not start with a "4."
7. Anything worth shooting is worth shooting twice. Ammo is cheap. Life is expensive.
8. Move away from your attacker. Distance is your friend. (Lateral & diagonal preferred.)
9. Use cover or concealment as much as possible.
10. Flank your adversary when possible. Protect yours.
11. Always cheat; always win. The only unfair fight is the one you lose.
12. In ten years nobody will remember the details of caliber, stance, or tactics. They will only remember who lived.
13. If you are not shooting, you should be communicating your intention to shoot.
Navy SEALS Rules for Gunfighting
1. Look very cool in sunglasses.
2. Kill every living thing within view.
3. Adjust speedo.
4. Check hair in mirror.
US Army Rangers Rules For Gunfighting
1. Walk in 50 miles wearing 75 pound rucksack while starving.
2. Locate individuals requiring killing.
3. Request permission via radio from "Higher" to perform killing.
4. Curse bitterly when mission is aborted.
5. Walk out 50 miles wearing a 75 pound rucksack while starving.
US Army Rules for Gunfighting
1. Select a new beret to wear.
2. Sew combat patch on right shoulder.
3. Change the color of beret you decide to wear.
US Air Force Rules For Gun fighting
1. Have a cocktail.
2. Adjust temperature on air-conditioner.
3. See what's on HBO.
4. Ask "what is a gunfight?"
5. Request more funding from Congress with a "killer" PowerPoint presentation.
6. Wine & dine 'key' Congressmen, invite DOD & defense industry executives.
7. Receive funding, set up new command and assemble assets.
8. Declare the assets "strategic" and never deploy them operationally.
9. Hurry to make 1345 tee-time.
US Navy Rules For Gunfighting
1. Go to Sea.
2. Drink Coffee.
3. Watch porn.
4. Land the Marines
Jack Bentley sent this letter of thanks, plus some photos to Charles Finch. Thanks, Jack, these are some special ones:
Thanks for the pictures of Sarge and his Retirement Ceremony. Wow what a career! Always thought of my combat aviator career as a blend between you and Sarge, pretty wild but not completely crazy. I would not fly under a bridge, sorry, nope, no way! (Well maybe the Golden Gate.)
36 years ago tonight, I remember sitting with Sarge and Bum in the club, just the three of us, trying to convince Bum that Mike's death wasn't his fault. Not sure that Bum has completely recovered even today, but it wasn't his fault.
I was going through one of my Mom's photo albums and found a bunch of pictures from Vietnam. Some of them are from your going away party, so I've sent two of them, they may be from the same set that you have. Also found a bunch of other pictures of Marines and Catkillers, don't even remember sending them to her, nor can I recall all of the faces/names. I'm going to scan them and put them on a disc. If you would like a copy, let me know (don't want to fill your mail box).
Cathy and I are going to Hawaii next week, and will spend the week with Mike and Yvonne. We have a private two bedroom house on the beach, with a hot tub. Should be fun. Will be staying on the northeast shore of Ohau.
Hillman 6 months ago, messing with my wife!
Sarge and myself at Rucker for Mike's graduation from flight school. (Damn it I am smiling)
Take care my friend, and as always our best to you, Nancy and your family.
Don Ricks, Catkiller 49, (newsletter editor) has a new e-mail address: email@example.com
Tom Clark, Catkiller 36, has a new e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Clint Smith, MarineAO, sent in this nore and provided his e-mail address;
"Please add my email address ( email@example.com) to the distribution on the terrific CatKiller newsletter. I had the opportunity to fly back seat with the 220th for about six months from around June - December '69.
Thanks, Clint Smith, (AO Section, 12th Marines, 3rd Marine Division)"
Recent additions to the e-list and roster include:
My name is Steve Badger I was in the "Catkillers" from 1966, or so, to mid 1968. I'm not sure of the exact dates. I had been in the 219th RAC "Headhunters" when I arrived in contry in 1966. During that time, as a crew chief, we went TDY to the Catkillers to the platoon in Hue for a short while.
After returning to Pleiku, several of us were transfered to Phu Bai and the Catkillers.
Most of my time in the 220th was at Dong Ha, that is until the Tet Offensive. We came back to Phu Bai, and I never got back there. In Phu Bai I was a crew chief, then for a short while I was a tech inspector.
I have only seen a couple of my fellow Catkillers after coming home and becoming a civilian in 1969. The worst part is, I have much trouble remembering the names or home towns of any others I was stationed with. A few names I see in the address book you keep look familier, but I cannot say I know them.
Now for my guestion. I have several photos from the days of my tour. I tried to scan them but they came out almost - well terrible. These were pictures the Viet Namese developed them and they wasn't such a good job done over there, and they are black and white. Is there a way to scan them or copy them so I can forward a few to the site?
In closing, I enjoy reading the news letter on line. Do you send them via e-mail? If so please put me on the list. I know I'm getting up there now in age, memory is fading, but I know I spent 26-months with the "Catkillers"
I was the crew chief on the plane Mr. Keaven was in the day he was shot. I remember the day almost like yesterday, but I can not remember the rear seaters name that brought the plane saftly down.Louis was from St Louis area if I remember correctly, and he was to go to Hawaii to get married not too long after he was killed.
Everyone take care, stay safe.
Steve Badger, AKA The "Badge"
Several have recently signed the guest book at Scott's Catiller Home page, and one response identified another Catkiller Jim Wall (Jim_Wall@bellsouth.net):
Jim Wall- Catkiller 38. Flew out of Marble Mountain from August '67 through April '68, then out of Dong Ha from April '68 through June '68. Discharged from army in 1969, joined SC National Guard in 1971 and initially flew birddogs. Retired on October 14, 2003, the day I turned 60 years old. My last15 years in the guard was flying apache helcopters (have you ever seen a 59 year old apache pilot that is still on flight status!)
This is from a newly located Catkiller, Angel G. De La Fuente:
Arrival in-Country May 1971, was working as a Mechanic in the engine shop and crew chief for a beaver.
Angel G. De La Fuente
5105 SW 7 St. Miami Fl. 33134
Started the Air Rescue program for Miami-Dade Fire Rescue 1985 and worked that group till 1992, then started working with OFDA/AID Training and doing Disaster relief, all over the world.
I was there when Bates went down. I have a lot of pictures, and I'll scan and forward them. My understanding was that when I went on R&R the company was requested to move south.
Thanks to Gary Huber, this link takes you to the obituary for Colonel Hackworth: Ed Miler send this note and excellent photo. Ah, isn't it good to see those love birds?
Charles Finch sent in this note and photo of his visit with Ed and Fran Miler. What is the story about the plaque, Charles?:
NED MILER, CATKILLER 6:
"You wanted a photo of me, so here is one of me and my lady, Francine,
taken last week at a Fly-In of the Antique Airplane Foundation at
Burlington, NC. You probably will not recognize me, some 36 years later,
and a few (!) pounds heavier than when I harassed you all at Phu Bai so
"Catkillers and Marine Backseaters. I was fortunate to finally catch up with Ed Miler last evening in Summerville, SC. I have attached a photo and will send another group with only photos.
My wife Nancy and I arrived at Ed's home around 4:15. We left about 8:30 PM and it was not nearly enough time to address all of those areas we would have liked to discuss. I will go back to see him before too long to discuss those subjects so many of us at the Vegas reunion wanted to ask "Major Miler".
Ed and his Francine took us out for a great dinner, insisted on paying the check, and then took us to see the house where he grew up and also to meet his brother Sherwood.
Ed and his brother were both Citadel graduates by the way.
I wish all of you who served under Major Miler (he commanded the 220th from 11 February - 4 July 1969) could have been there. He is now 69 years old, looks great, and still has wonderful recall of the 220th. He has survived a heart attack, a quadruple bypass and of course having to command all of us for 6 months.
I have been so lucky to get to see the Marine backseaters and Ed Miler as well as so many of you since the reunion. I think Paul Brennan is correct in that we need ONE MORE REUNION. I know it would be hard to do but after seeing Major Miler and the Marines, I just sense we as a unit should once again try to get together.
I will never forget Terry Scruggs telling me before he left Vegas "we should have done this earlier". After his death, Terry's wife told me how much the reunion meant to Terry.
For me to see John Kovach walk in with his son and about 5 Catkillers in shock that the BEAR still looked exactly the same was simply incredible. Major Wisby sitting with Doc Clement, Sarge, PEPE, Bum, Andy Anderson,Grayson,Bruton, Glenn Strange Bonning and the rest, watching Bill Hooper and Ned Wilson together again, playing poker with Hillman, Jack Bentley, Doc, Bonning and the regulars, seeing Brennan with Warren Taylor, Blevins and Dreschel, is just something that I would like to see again, only add Tank Meehan, Major Miler, the Marine backseaters, Jim Hooper the author, Jim Hudson, McMillan, Bob Joles, Dale Moore, Bob Jones, Gene Frey, Bobby Arringon, Mike Sharkey,Bud Donnelly, Buster and Lopez the crew chiefs, Steve Grass, and anyone else we could locate.
What an experience it would be just to let Majors Wisby and Miler have the floor and go over our OERs. Then PEPE could give his account of their leadership. I guess I am dreaming.
Again, the visit with Major Miler was too short but oh so magical after 36 years without seeing him.
Happy Memorial Day Catkillers.
CATKILLER PATCH, ETC.:
No connection with the Cat Killers, I was with the ASA in Vietnam.
I recently acquired this patch from the RVN era and have looked through the Web but have not run across a platoon patch like it. Any background you can give me on the History of the 1st PLT would be appreciated!
If you give credits....list it as "Lee-Jackson Militaria" and yes you can use my e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Other 220th patches can be seen on this link:
If you need good picfiles of the other Cat Killer patches I have let me know and I will send a 150dpi scan and you may use the picfiles in any non-profit way you see fit.
If you run into anyone having knowledge/pictures of the YO-3A aircraft and the patches worn by the personnel assigned to the project I would appreciate them contacting me. My YO-3A Cat's Eye patch needs more research and I cannot get all the info I need.
Sometime during the summer of 1991 I took over as the new commander of the 1/417 Training Battalion which was part of the 76th Training Division. As part of a recruitment drive the Battalion drill sergeants had set up a Weaponeer (M-16 training simulator) at a gun show at a large hall in Portsmouth, NH.
As a very new Commander I was very interested in all aspects of the Battalions activities. Upon arriving I spoke to the members of the recruiting team and then was given the opportunity to fire the Weaponeer a piece of equipment that I had never seen before.
After about 30 minutes of reviewing the operation I decided to go into the hall and check out the gun show. Upon entering the hall I was amazed at the size of the show. There were at least 150 exhibitors selling everything from guns and ammo to military paraphernalia. Walking over to the first table which was a very large military memorabilia dealer who had about 30 glass display cases arranged on tables I leaned over and this was the very first object that my eyes focused upon!
I was amazed! Here was something very personal to me, found purely by chance in what could only be described as an ocean of military items! Once I got my composure I called the dealer over and asked how much he was asking for the pin. $6 was his reply. I almost broke my arm pulling the money out of my pocket!
I wonder if any other Catkillers have one of these and if so if they know the history and origin of them.
Best wishes to you, my BROTHERS.
Ed Miler send this note and excellent photo. Ah, isn't it good to see those love birds?
Charles Finch sent in this note and photo of his visit with Ed and Fran Miler. What is the story about the plaque, Charles?: