January Retiree's Corner
By Robert (Bob) W. Barkalow, Jr., Master Sgt. (Retired)
/ Published December 29, 2015
MCENTIRE JOINT NATIONAL GUARD BASE, S.C. -- We had a smaller group for our December Luncheon, probably due to some folks attending Jackie Lemack's funeral service at the Fort Jackson National Cemetery, which was held at the same time as our Luncheon. But we still had about 40-45 folks to show. In addition, we had the presence of the wing commander who briefed us on the varied and many things going on and about McEntire.
Congaree/McEntire History: On my Master List of Retirees, I currently have 1,284+ Retirees since 1963. The + stands for some that have been missed primarily during the 'Missing Link' years of 1987-93. So my guess is unofficially we have approximately 1,325 Retirees for the 69 years of the South Carolina Air National Guard.
The Monument currently has 277 names on it through the early part of 2015. However, there are at least 20 names that have been validated, but not engraved on the Monument at this time. Some very prominent Air Guard folks, they were missed or overlooked. Actually there are some folks who retired that may never have their names on the Monument due to lack of communications with the families and networking, although this has improved over time.
To date for the year 2015, we have 17 known retired and active members pass away who will be honored during our January Luncheon.
As promised, I am submitting names of our Korean Conflict call-up folks. Twenty-one months of active duty beginning October 10, 1950. SCANG along with other units, transitioned into a Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron and later a Group, the 117th Tactical Recon Group. Some of the pilots and crews were eventually sent to both Europe and Korea later on during this call-up. There were a total of 321 activated October 10, 1950. I'll begin with the first group of 18 members of the 157th Fighter Squadron (SE). We think the SE stands for Single Engine, but not sure. If it stands for something else, perhaps someone can enlighten us. The Members with their ranks at that timeframe were Lieutenant Colonel Barnie B. McEntire Jr., Major George H. Ropp Jr., Captains John N. Bellinger, Lamar M. Christian, George W. Denton, Samuel L. Finklea Jr., James B. Forrest, Warren H. Jolly, Jack L. Moak, John C. Murphy, William M. Riddle Robert H. Schorb Jr., 1st Lieutenants Harold J. Bourgaois Jr., Robert S. Corbett Sr., Bernard A. Daetwyler, Jack T. Edmund, John E. Hanlin and Robert G. Hooks Jr.
As mentioned above, our January Luncheon will take place January 5th at the Fort Jackson NCO Club, beginning at noon. We will strive to honor those who passed away in 2015. Please come if you can, to honor these good folks.