MARINE BOMBING SQUADRON SIX-THIRTEEN ASSOCIATION
45 Verano Loop
Santa Fe, NM 87508-3151
4 Jaunary 2005
Memo To: All The Arm Chair Quarterbacks
Many thanks to all for the phone calls, e mail messages, cards and letters on the subject of New Years.
Heard from DC Clay who reported that he is now on the way to recovery from a heart problem. He spent four days in the hospital and they sent him home with a large box of pills to be taken over a certain time span.
He is starting to feel better and is up and around at home, but he doesn't try to do too much physical activity. He looked out the window one morning and saw about six inches of snow on the ground which he thought the sun should be able to handle. The sun got involved and removed all of the snow. It was the first snow he had seen out in Twenty-Nine Palms since about 1982.
He was starting to do his daily crossword puzzle one day and it suddenly occurred to him that he couldn't determine where to write the answers on the form. Other things in the room looked strange so he made the decision to call for medical assistance and they got him to the hospital.
He sends his greetings to all.
Heard from Doc and Jane Protheroe who say hello and regards to all. They will be staying in Hilton Head this Christmas due to the damage done by the hurricane to their condo in Punta Gorda, FL. Repairs are still in progress.
They hope to get one trip in to Punta Gorda before Xmas just to see what progress has been made in rehabilitating their condo.
Bill Barber says hello to all. He read with interest the newsletter he received on October 28th wherein it mentioned that a VMB 613 model aircraft was on display at the aviation museum at Lexington, KY. The builder may be the same man that met is daughter several years ago while she was attending law school at the University of Kentucky at Lexington.
This person wanted to build a model of a VMB 613 PBJ for the Lexington airport display case. Using as an aid, pictures that Bill sent his daughter, he was able to complete the model. His daughter was able to obtain the model when it was completed, and she gave it to Bill as a gift on her visit home. Bill took some pictures of the model and sent two of them along to us.
He is of the opinion that the model maker of his gift model is the same person who built the model on display at the airport.
Foster Cummings received a letter from a member of VMB 611 which mentioned the Commemorative Air Force, Southern California Wing, Camarillo, CA are undertaking a major project in restoring a PBJ-1J aircraft, Bureau Number 35857 to honor those veterans that served in VMB squadrons during WWII.
This team was very enthusiastic about restoring this PBJ-1J as accurately as possible, and they are anticipating using VMB 611 history as the model to honor all VMB squadrons.
Heard fro Bob and Helen Polakowski who send regards to all. He reported that they had a great time at the Cummings' for the Birthday Ball.
Their flight over and back was as smooth as being in a PBJ. That was his dream, not anyone else's. Actually he finished with -- it was very good.
Bob feels that he is 90% recovered from his heart surgery of last July. He was so confident of that fact, he shoveled 2 inches of heavy wet snow off the walks and driveways of at least one-third of the neighborhood. Great exercise, he said, coupled with greater appreciation form the neighbors, especially from the widows.
Joe and Dot Waldowski send their best regards to all. They are doing OK -- some minor problems, but nothing serious. They remain active in their senior group and bowl once a week.
Joe remembered seeing a picture of the B-25, Pacific Prowler, in one of our newsletters. Recently, that B-25 was at an airport near them so Joe went to see it and had a nice talk with the crew, looked the plane over and it really looked great. He also signed VMB 613 in the bomb bay. He also received a nice letter from the Prowler Group in appreciation of his interest and for being a crew member of a B-25.
Joe and Dot also visited with Marie Timinskas, she is doing well, and spends time doing things with her children.
Bill and Marian Kehr send their regards to all. Everything is going along very well. They are still working on their landscaping task around the house that they started months ago. In a few days, they will be getting some professional landscapers in to fully complete the tasks.
George and Doris McDearmon say hello and regards to all. The current holiday plans for them means to spend Christmas with their daughter in Miramar, FL. They will be driven both ways by their grandson who is in college at Lynchburg, VA. They are looking forward to some warmer weather.
JD "Jim" Garls sends his regards to all. He is endeavoring to set up a system wherein the snow will be easy to move around his house this coming winter. Hopefully, he will only get small amounts. When the weather gets too bad fro him to navigate, he is able to fall back on his friendly relatives to go out and do his required food shopping.
Jack Schwertfager says hello and regards to all. Things remain on the upswing in golf country, and hopefully he will be able to swing the clubs during the holiday season.
Nick Bozic sends his regards to all. He recently spent three weeks in the hospital recuperating from a hip operation. This was around Thanksgiving Day. He fell on the driveway at his son's house and is now home recuperating. Unfortunately, this is the leg where he had bone practically rubbing on bone, so it isn't too easy trying to eliminate the pain. A planned eye operation has been deferred until his system is up to strength.
Jim and Mary Jane Lewis send their best to all. Mary Jane continues to improve health wise and is on a non-supervised exercise routine at home. Time will tell how successful she will be at this sort of thing.
They continue to be active in local events which really keeps them busy.
Dot Evans sends her best to all. She mentioned that Adam and Sarah, who now live in Wichita, will be visiting. Adam attended the San Diego reunion when he had just turned 16 and was introduced to the Marines. Adam is now in the Marketing Division of Learjet Sales, USA, a division of Bombardier Aerospace. He really like his job which is is the backup of the sales force throughout the country.
Frank Robinson sends his regards to all. Everything is good all the time, which makes for an easy way to get things accomplished, including his exercise schedule. Hence, it keeps him young.
Mary Hall says hello. She said that her home in Florida wasn't in the path of the hurricane. She is giving serious consideration to selling her Florida home and returning to live in her condo in Rochester. In January, her daughter and son-in-law will be going to Florida to help her pack up for the move up north.
Brooke Ligon, the daughter of Bob "Arky" Ligon, called to let us know that her family had the burial ceremony for her Dad. She thanked us for the Squadron's remembrance.
She is preparing a webpage in honor of her Dad and asked about his activities other than flying. We discussed his off duty assignments which he undertook on his own initiative, such as running the roller around the squadron headquarters area to smooth down the coral after excavation work. In addition to the headquarters area, he also went to the flight line and was able to make the work areas there a little safer for the line personnel to move about by running the roller over the coral sand.
Received a short message from Willis Roose who says hello to all. He received a message from Waxie Prankard that was enclosed with his Xmas card. In the message, Waxie said that during '04 he turned 80 and got married.
We say belated congratulations to Waxie from VMB 613 members.
We need some help from members who may have a lot of VMB 613 aircraft info in their photo albums. Michael Smith, the son-in-law of aircraft mechanic Harold Dunlap, is building an "H" model of a PBJ and is making it as realistic as possible. One thing he still needs is the MB number of the airplane that Harold Dunlap worked on. If he can get this number, he will have more than completed his task correctly. Please send me your data on the MB number after you research your photo albums.
Cliff Dotson says hello to all. He and Patsy made their decision to build a new home and the pick and shovel work for the foundation is well underway with the house now 75% complete. They hope to be able to move in sometime in February. A great challenge Cliff said, but also an interesting experience. They have a sales contract for their present home which removes any and all pressures on that matter.
Mike Jacus says regards to all. All is continuing well with them. He still manages to find things to do to occupy his time, none of which is ever idle. He was happy to contribute to the identification of ordnance personnel in one of the group pictures. It brought his memory out of retirement.
Mike also sent along some newspaper articles about the discovery of WWII aircraft on Lake Michigan. Now there is an administrative tug-of-war going on with the various government organizations as to how, when and where to display the planes, should they be recovered from the lake's depths. More information on these aircraft will be made available in future newsletters.
Just received a message from the daughter of John Aymen who reports that John was diagnosed with cancer in a lymph node by his kidney. After extensive testing they found that the cancer originated in the upper intestinal tract.
John has been set up surgically for intravenous chemotherapy which will be given on Wednesday and Thursday every other week for the next eight to ten months. The treatments were scheduled to start on December 15th.
John's spirits remain high and he is open to discussion on the matter. They are a family that believes in prayer and will appreciate any that others can spare.
Heard from Herb Baxter after several years of silence. He has been recuperating from a serious illness and is slowly recovering. I was able to get our website address properly transmitted to his wife, who in turn gave it to their son.
Herb's son, Robert, brought him over to his home and pulled up the VMB 613 website. Robert said that just viewing the site brought his Dad back to being much younger again and has given him a new Holiday attitude. He was able to identify several of the communications personnel, including himself, which really made him feel great.
He was wondering if we had any 613 material that he could review to bring back more memories. Our webmaster is endeavoring to get some data e-mailed to him so that he can really go back in time for memories.
Several members of VMB 613 went to Kwajalein for the 50th anniversary of the capture of the island. While there, the acquaintance of Richard Sorenson, Medal of Honor recipient, was made. Over the years, Richard kept in contact with Foster Cummings and used to visit with him on his trips to the northeast. Word was received that Richard passed away on October 9, 2004.
It was also learned that at the Veterans Day ceremonies held on Kwajalein, a model of the "Private Richard K. Sorenson" catamaran was christened by his wife, Mildred Sorenson. Richard's children were also in attendance at the ceremony. Some pictures from the Kwajalein Hourglass covering the aforementioned ceremonies are attached to this newsletter.
Heard from Jerry and Peggy Gutshall who say things are going very well for them health wise, and they send their Happy Holidays to all. They plan to go to Kansas City for the holidays to visit with their daughter and family.
Sandy and Dave are happily living in State College and are able to take in all the football games, basketball games, and all the cultural entertainment that the town offers. Sandy is doing part-time Christian counseling, and Dave manages a series of condos and apartments which they own.
Their oldest son is moving up the ranks in the Army and has been promoted to commander of "A" Company of the 302nd and is stationed at Fort Dietrich, MD.
Jerry and Peggy are looking forward to the next reunion in 2006.
While doing research on squadron members listed on the rosters, the following members were found to have passed away over the years.
Harold Riehle - Passed away in February 2004
Matthew Martincevic - Passed away in December 2000
Our webmaster received the following message from John Martincevic:
Outstanding website! My father was a member of VMB-613 during this period. Sadly, my father passed away in December 2000.
To those members of VMB-613 who are still with us, and to those who have passed, I render a hand salute and a sincere Thank You for your service. You will always be part of America's greatest generation!
John Martincevic, USAF, Retired, MSGT
Someone was searching the VMB 613 website looking for information about Amelia Earhart. The old rumors of her death site and also that of her navigator, Fred Noonan, continue to come alive. One rumor that continues to persist is that Noonan was brought to Kawjalein and executed there.
The VMB 613 website has been averaging 300 unique visitors per week, and the number of returning visitors has been averaging about 20 per week. First-time visitors have been averaging about 45 per day.
Links to our website continues to be added by other Marine Corps oriented websites.
Robert Yanacek, our webmaster, has been reviewing and posting the names of the members of VMB 613 over its period of operation, and so far has come up with over 900 names of members. Many of the members were only in the squadron for a short time before being transferred to other VMB squadrons or Marine aviation units in the Pacific. When he is able to get more rosters, this total will be expanded to reflect a much larger number of former VMB 613 members.
Robert Yanacek in doing research for the website also cam across a reference to a photograph of a VMB 613 aircraft that was apparently taken on Eniwetok, Marshall Islands in 1945. He has contacted the unit that has the information on the photograph to see if he can get a copy of it and any other pictures they may have.
Remember that our new fiscal year started in January 2005. If there isn't an (04) or higher two digit number appearing after your name on the mailing label on your envelope you should mail a check to us made out to VMB 613 in the amount of $20.00 for payment of dues.
Note: (04) denotes 2004, (05) denotes 2005. Many thanks to the members who have already sent in their dues checks.
THE LIMITED EDITION COLLECTORS ITEM, the squadron logo hat pin is still available for VMB 613 members and friends. This pin is an inch in diameter and comes in a pewter finish or gold plated with a hand painted finish. The colors are similar to the colored logo that was mailed out several months ago. Marine Corps Scarlet Red background, Gold Wings, Black Cannon and Maces. Plus it is made in America.
A new item is the license plate frame. It is a composition material (special plastic) with a red background and gold lettering. The top of the frame has U.S. MARINES and the bottom VMB 613 WWII. The cost is $5.00 INCLUDING PACKING AND SHIPPING.
USMC Heat Transfer Kit. Has 6 large insignias and 6 small insignias. Can use on caps, T shirts or any other cloth item. These kits are $3.95 each.
We still have the small VMB 613 number plate for the rear window at $5.00 each. These now can be ordered with either a WHITE or RED background.
The regular size VMB 613 license plate complete with mounting hardware is now available on special order for $20.00.
We have a limited number of Red VMB 613 caps, the cost is $10.00 each and are being sold on a first-order, first-serve basis.
These memorabilia items can be ordered from Charlie Knapp.
Please continue the notes or letters all of which help to make the monthly letter more interesting.
This is all for now. Stay healthy.
For security reasons, changes to the roster are not available on-line. Please contact Charlie Knapp for address information.
VMB 613 E-MAIL DIRECTORY LISTING
A directory of e-mail addresses for members is available on-line in a password protected area of the site. Please contact our webmaster to obtain your password.
Note: Please check your address on the listing and let me know of any required corrections. Some messages have been returned with a comment "unknown address."
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