September Retiree Corner
By Bob Barkalow, Jr., Master Sgt. (Retired)
/ Published August 30, 2012
MCENTIRE JOINT NATIONAL GUARD BASE, South Carolina -- We had right at 60 of us to show for the August Breakfast with at least four more first timers, beginning with Harold Guerry, Albert Atkins, Delphin Gantt and Jim Hiott. As of late, we have had a good crop of first timers; keep up the good work. Chaplain Bohlman provided us with some great insight about his past deployment to Bagram AB and what he and his staff did, mainly working around the trauma unit at the base hospital. He told us some great stories and illustrated them with some graphic pictures. He is truly a chaplain's chaplain.
The Breakfast/Luncheons will remain at the Fort Jackson Officers Club until about mid-2013. Sorry to report this, but that is all we can do before reporting back to the NCO Club, which should be completely refurbished. I had the honor of sitting with two generals and four pilots during this breakfast: Bob Johnson, Stan Hood, Bob Dorn and Paul Hawkins. There are a lot of hours in the cockpit with that group!
McEntire History: We have graduated to the year 2002 to honor those retirees. We have a total of 40 known retirees during that year. I will opt to divide them up in three groups. The first group by order of retirement dates are; Maj. Thomas McLean Jr. and Capt. David Goodwin. Chief Master Sgts. Archie Sightler Jr. (Danny), Julian Tanner (Cecil), Mary Jones and Richard Dillon (Matt). Senior Master Sgts. Artis McCabe Jr. (Mac), Wallace Burrows, Richard Roof and Michael Hilley. Master Sgts. John Smith Jr., William Hightower, David Randolph and Tech. Sgt. John Davis. A lot of rank went out the door during that period.
Fifty years ago, 747 officers and airman were released from active duty from many places. Primarily Europe, Moron, Spain, Chaumont, Drux, Etain, Chaumbley and Phalsbourg, France, and Mannheim, Germany, plus some of them were assigned to CONUS back fill positions. The F-104's returned the same way they went, dismantled and in the bellies of C-124's. By the time the maintainers tightened the last bolts on the Starfighters, the Cuban Crisis came about. It was exciting times back then, and, as always, SCANG answered the bell.
Next month, our breakfast is the day after Labor Day, so easy to remember. If you haven't been to a breakfast in a while, you ought to hear some of the stories that should be chronicled in some book or museum. This is where the real stories are, and I only hear probably half of them. If ever you do not see your name in print as an official retiree during the year I am working on, let me know by calling me at (803)936-0680 or e-mail email@example.com. Speaking of emails, if any of you out there would like to be part of the SCANG Retirees Address Book or network, let me know. We currently have 207 folks signed up. Primarily, I let people know if someone is sick or dies and offer reminders about our functions. I promise not to bombard you with an overabundance of emails.