CHARLESTON AIR FORCE STATION
LETTERS & NOTES
"I received the latest newsletter and really enjoyed reading about the personnel that were stationed at CAFS. Please find enclosed a donation for both the newsletter and the upcoming Reunion 2002. We are very fortunate to have such a dedicated committee. Thank you for your very hard work.
Now that I have the dates for Reunion 2002 I can finalize plans to attend. At the last reunion, it was mentioned that the Saturday event would have to be moved from the ANG base to a larger facility off-base. I would prefer that we remain there and continue our military ties, especially after the 9/11 horrific events.
I noted in the newsletter that a Chuck McMahan hiked up to the top of the "hill" and viewed the platforms and buildings. Wouldnt it be great to have someone videotape the "hill" and show it at the reunion?
When I was in Maine this past July, I noted that the original roadway entrance to CAFS had been bulldozed as well as the motorpool building next to Route 15 had been torn down. Somehow it was a very saddening sight.
Thanks again and I look forward to seeing all at Reunion 2002."
Larry K. Phillips
BUIC III Ops, 69-70
Tapoco, North Carolina
Richard & Sue Dorsey
Bob & Louise Murcek
Jack & Nancy Sinagra
Thank you all so much for your continued dedication to keeping those old memories of Charleston Air Force Station alive. If your name gets omitted from the thank you list from time to time, please forgive the Editors occasional (or NOT so occasional) lapses!
MORE NOTES & LETTERS
"At seventeen years old I arrived at CAFS and met with MSgt Warren, the first sergeant. I knew he was the hardest man I would ever meet. After four years at CAFS, I realized that he was one of the best men I had ever served with, he helped me a lot. P.S. You never went into Major Swartzs office if you did not have to."
Robert Westergren, A1C
127 Rockwood Dr, Grass Valley CA 95545
"Something to keep the letters coming. Makes for interesting reading trying to see if Sue or I can remember the people writing. See Ed Gilmore and his wife Judy, supply Sgt about twice a year. They live about 5 hrs south of us in South Carolina, we try to see them on our trips to Myrtle Beach. Still living in North Carolina, had to move my folks in with us. Sues mom in a nursing home in Florida just turned 88. Havent been back to Maine for 5 or 6 years. Trying to make it next summer. Thats all for now."
Radar Maint & MCI
We wondered what happened to Ed & Judy Gilmore since their newsletters kept coming back. We had no forwarding address but maybe well get an update from Bill Babish. Ed.
"Thank you for continuing efforts in "keeping us together".
"I am sending my annual donation and it is money well spent as I enjoy the newsletter very much. Really sorry that we havent been able to attend but one reunion but we would like to make 2002 if possible. We did make it to Pittsburgh, Pa, for my 50th class reunion and got to see my childhood friend and also a Charleston Refugee, Joe Notaro and his wife Joan at the reunion too.
We also went out to dinner with another friend from Charleston who lives in Clinton, Pa, Duane & Arlene Scott (Charleston 1967-?). It was an enjoyable trip and a pleasure to see all of them
One other thing, I got a letter from an outfit I was in in Germany and found the name and address of another Charlestonite, Joe & Donna Casale, 1683 East 1250 South, Ogden, UT 84404. He was ther 1966-68 FPS-27 Tower.
Thanks again, and keep up the good work."
Jack & Nancy Sinagra Crestview, Fla
"Enclosed is a check for the newsletter. Bob really enjoys it. Thank you for the newsletter. You all do a great job on it!"
Lou & Bob Murcek
2713 W. 16 St, Greeley CO 80634-4922
808 Silver Hill Rd
No. Little Rock AR 72118
MAINE AVIATION HISTORICAL SOCIETY UPDATE
The Maine Air Museum is located at Bangor International Airport and is aimed toward preserving artifacts of military aviation in the state of Maine. Please check out their website www.acadia.net/mahs for more info plus photos. You may recognize from old Dow AFB days the building they are using. Anyone who is able to assist in any manner, please contact Leo Boyle at 207-854-9972 or Jim Chichetto at 207-269-3281 evenings. They can also answer any membership questions you may have. Tell them Pauline sent you!
THE REUNION DATE HAS BEEN CHANGED !!
PLEASE PASS THAT INFO
ALONG IN ALL YOUR CORRESPONDENCE AND E-MAILS!
REUNION 2002 - TENTATIVE PLANS
SUBJECT TO CHANGE
FRIDAY, JULY 26 , 6:00 PM
MEET AT PILOTS GRILL AT OUTER HAMMOND STREET FOR A SOCIAL HOUR AND AT 7:00 PM ORDER DINNER OR APPETIZER FROM THE MENU IF YOU WISH. This has always been a good opportunity for people to meet early or to see those who cannot attend the Reunion on Saturday.
SATURDAY, JULY 27, 10:00 AM
BUS RIDE OR AUTO CONVOY BY "THE HILL" and into Dover-Foxcroft. Have lunch a the oriental restaurant..
VISIT THE MAINE AIR MUSEUM located right at Bangor International Airport.
[If time permits, we could stop at Corinth Historical Society for a short visit to see the museum. (Pauline has the KEY.)]
SATURDAY, JULY 27, 6:00 PM
RETURN TO PILOTS GRILL TO SOCIALIZE AND ENJOY A BUFFET DINNER. MUSIC & DANCING TO FOLLOW. The band we are attempting to book are all Foxcroft Academy Alumni and all proceeds go toward scholarships for Academy students. Because some folks may have difficulty driving after dark ... not to worry .. one of us will see that you get transportation to and from the restaurant.
SUNDAY, JULY 28, WORSHIP AT THE CHURCH OF YOUR CHOOSING. Very tentatively, in the afternoon perhaps a trip to Bar Harbor for sightseeing /shopping.
NOTE: We understand the preference for a base facility; however, there is no guarantee that the Guard base will be open for all to freely enter. Due to events of 9/11/01 extreme security measures are in effect at the Air National Guard Base as with all government Agencies. To assure a place for our reunion, guaranteed available facilities had to be reserved months in advance.
It was suggested, and we feel it is a great idea, that each person who attends the Reunion brings a prize which is representative of something from their home area. Such as peanuts from the South, maple syrup from Vermont or New Hampshire, etc. It does not need to be a big prize, but we wouldnt turn them down!! Dont forget now, prizes are up to you. The Committee will also provide some prizes in case some are forgotten at the last minute by some folks.
FROM THE PAST
765TH RADAR SQUADRON
AWARDED AIR FORCE OUTSTANDING UNIT AWARD
Topsham, Maine -- The 765th Radar Squadron at Charleston Air Force Station, Maine, commanded by Maj George Marvin, has been awarded the Air Force Outstanding Unit Award, according to orders issued by the Department of the Air Force headquarters in Washington D.C.
The award is for the period Jan 1, 1959, and April 30, 1963, during which time the unit demonstrated "exceptionally meritorious service in support of military operations". Basic mission of the unit, situated atop Bull Hill in Central Maine, is to provide search and height data on aircraft to the Bangor North American and Bangor Air Defense Sectors headquarters Semi-Automatic Ground Environment (SAGE) Direction Center at Topsham Air Force Station.
The 765th also provides ground-to-air and data-link communication facilities to manned and unmanned interceptor weapons systems and provides manual direction to manned interceptors under situations where the basic SAGE system is not in control.
Involved in this manual control are F-101 and F89J jet interceptor aircraft from the 75th Fighter Interceptor Squadron and 132nd Maine Air National Guard Squadron respectively, both at Dow AFB, and F-106 jets from the 27th Fighter Interceptor Squadron at Loring AFB, all units of the Bangor Air Defense Sector.
Basis equipment of the unit includes search radar, the only one of its particular type in the Bangor Sector; an unmanned search radar at Topsfield, Maine, 90 miles northeast of the squadron site; a height finding radar complex; a digital data transmitted and data-link transmitter.
Factors involved which led to the award were primarily the quality and quantity of radar inputs and air-to-ground communication capability provided the SAGE Direction Center at Topsham AFS.
One major problem overcome by the squadron commander to accomplish this outstanding mission was in the field of personnel. In 1961 there were only 85 airmen assigned to the 765th and in the summer of 1962 only four officers with 80 airmen on On-The-Job Training status. Presently there are 14 officers and 210 airmen assigned to the unit.
The supply account record review for the unit was judged the "Best In 26th Air Division" in September, 1961, by Air Defense Command headquarters personnel who accomplished their review in three hours rather than two days which was standard time at other installations; the 26th Civil Engineering section in July, 1962, indicated that the station was the "Best Maintained" in the division; the unit dispensary was rated "Best In Division"; and the Communication-Electronics section, through continuous outstanding performance of mission requirements, is considered one of the "Best In Air Defense Command."
Consecutive reports by the USAF Inspector Generals office from 1960 through 1962 relate better than normal degree of efficiency by the unit; the squadron was the first to win the 26th Air Division Commanders Recreation Trophy for morale and team spirit in September, 1962; and the unit is well respected by the surrounding civilian community populace because of an active public relations program by all personnel.
[Submitted by George Marvin]
Therapists advise that a way to obtain inner peace is to finish things you start and things that make you content. Following their guidelines, today I have finished two bags of potato chips, a small box of chocolates, a lemon pie and a fifth of Jack Daniels. You know what? The therapists are correct, I feel better already!
2002 REUNION COMMITTEE
The Usual Volunteers
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