2019 REUNION INFO
Right now its tracking at the middle of March 2019 since
the last Change of Command was March 15, 2017. Hopefully the Commanders tour
will be extended just a little so his family won't have to move during the
school year. The weather here in March is a little uncertain, so a end of
May / first part of June would be better for us, but we'll work it out. A
long with the Change of Command, we'll be looking at maybe a post briefing,
museum tour, flight simulator tour, static aircraft display, Saturday night
banquet, and maybe Huey rides. We'll keep you informed as the date gets closer.
2017 Reunion Report
We held our 2017 Reunion of the units of the 145th Combat
Aviation Battalion at the Wyndham Garden, Baronne Plaza New Orleans, LA,
May 18th through 20th, 2017.
Most attendees arrived Wednesday, May 17 when we gathered for registration
and our early bird reception. It was good seeing everyone and everything
went well thanks to the organizing of Mike and Catherine Breaux. We had plenty
of snacks and refreshments and hotel supplied the good size meeting reception
room. The Earlybird Reception went on till late in the evening and everyone
seemed to have a really good time.
On Thursday 18 May we opened the hospitality room about 8 AM where we was
setup for registration. The buses departed for the plantation/swamp tour
at about 8:30 AM.
Since I didn't go on the tours I asked Deb to write a review of the tours.
I stayed back at the hotel to visit with the ones not on the tour.
At the Plantation, our group went from the ice house, to the beautiful home,
to the slave houses. The plantation produced indigo, for dyeing clothes,
and sugar cane. As we walked around the plantation you could see the grandness
of the life and the harshness of its workers. From there we were taken to
the swamp. Our guide was a hoot, as we ate he took us on a nice tour of the
swamps and told us about his life growing up there. As a mother of five I
would have been a wreck waiting for the children to get home safe, but he
really had a great childhood. He took us up the fingers of water looking
for gators. When we found them he fed them marsh mellows We also got to hold
one of the little guys. I was so lost in the swamp I was glad he knew his
The buses returned to the Wyndham Gardens about 4 PM. People went to
dinner on their own, some in unit groups. We had the hospitality room open
all day for registration. And about 5 PM we held our Thursday night reception
with snacks and drinks which went on till late in the evening.
On Friday 19 May we opened the registration and hospitality room about 8
AM. About 8:30 AM the buses loaded for the tour to the national World War
II Museum. We completely filled the bus with one more than capacity but everything
worked out okay.
The Museum was so full of information, to truly see it; you would need two
days. After we walked though the museum we had a delicious lunch with entertainment.
A USO show with the Victory Belles, three beautiful young women. It was one
of the most entertaining shows that I have seen in years. The singers went
out into the audience and sang to the men, sat on their laps and joyously
teased them with songs. Mel Metzger, 120th AML, 63-64, was picked to go up
on stage, but to their surprise he was not shy. Mel danced all the dances
and sang with them. His parents were ballroom dancers and he was very good.
We all laughed and cried during the show, the girls done a fantastic job.
I would tell everyone to go to the museum and see the show.
About 4 PM the buses returned to the Wyndham Gardens where we had the hospitality
room open. People went to dinner on their own some in unit groups. About
5 PM we held our Friday night reception with drinks and snacks which went
on till late in evening
On Saturday 20 may we opened the registration and hospitality room about
8 AM. About 9 PM we started a business meeting. The registration and hospitality
room remained open all day. People got a chance to go out and visit the French
quarter and other attractions in New Orleans on their own and also visit
At the business meeting we re-elected our officers: Jim Bodkin - Nat Dir,
Debby Bodkin - Nat Sec/ Treasurer, Mike Hoke - Auditor, Mel Metzger - Historian.
David McCollum, brother of PFC Wayne McCollun, KIA Nov 7th, 1966, 334th AHC,
talked a little about his brother, but mostly we discussed PTSD, his son-in-law
Brady Oberg who took his own life Aug 6th, 2015, and the Brady Oberg Legacy
Foundation. The Foundation is trying to help cut back on the 22 veteran/soldiers
who take their own lives each day. You can find more info on the Brady Oberg
Legacy Foundation by contacting David McCollum, 1882 180th St, Mahnomen,
MN 56557 email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
Their mission is to promote a happy, healthy life for combat veterans. With
your donation they will provide…. Scholarships for combat veterans going
into counseling, Events to get combat veterans together, Combat PTSD awareness.
We discussed and decided that for the 2021 Reunion to look for a professional
reunion organizing group and to look more at the center of the country, maybe
Branson, MO. We discussed about having the Reunion more during the week days
and not just week-end time. We discussed selling CDs with the website pictures
just for our members. We discussed the price of unit t-shirts, $3 over cost
plus mailing, a slight increase. And we discussed placing a memory in Arlington
Cemetery, but the VN pilots and crew members memorial might have that covered.
From 6 PM to 7 PM we had our social hour before our banquet began. From 7
PM till about 9:30 PM we had our main banquet dinner with guest speaker,
Col Larry Babin. Very interesting.
About 9:30 PM we reopened our hospitality room with drinks and snacks and
good conversation until way late in the evening.
I look forward to seeing everyone at the 2019 Reunion at Ft Rucker, AL.