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Charleston Air Force Station

Charleston, Maine



April 2001


We're just very late getting this newsletter out!           Was it because of the continual cloudy weather and snowstorms, four to six foot snowbanks, constant cold temperatures, global warming, the advancing iceage, the tendency to want to hibernate, feelings ranging from sickness to just the blahs and Cabin Fever, who knows? It definitely was not because we lacked input from the guys and gals out there. SORRY IT'S LATE, BUT BETTER LATE THAN NEVER! It's a long letter so settle back for the news -- good and bad.


          Dr. Linus J. Stitham passed away December 17th, 2000. He was born in Mars Hill, Maine, on March 31, 1917, and was married to Helen Dillen Stitham for 58 years.
         Contributions in memory of Dr. Stitham may be made to Radio Readers Program, Reading for the Blind WQCS, 3209 Virginia Ave., Fort Meyers, FL 34981 or to Helen Dillen Stitham Valedictorian Award of Foxcroft Academy, Dover Foxcroft, ME 04426.
         Everyone from "the hill" who knew Doc Stitham had their own stories to tell since he delivered a great number of the babies born to them and their wives. No one loved these stories more than Doc himself. Upon the retelling of these stories he would laugh heartily even when the joke turned out to be on him.
        Doc will be sadly missed at our reunions. Messages may be sent to Helen at their Port Lucie, Florida address.


       Beverly, wife of Reunion Committee member Joe Mizda, died March 23, 2001, at a local Bangor hospital. She was born in San Francisco, California, February 24, 1942. Those who wish to remember Beverly in a special way may make contributions in her memory to the American Lung Assoc. of Maine, P.O. Box 2109, Augusta, Maine 04338-2109.
       Beverly supported Joe in all his work with the Reunion Committee and was always interested in what we were doing, although due to health problems she was unable to attend many of our functions.


       Upon seeing a photo of Polly in the memorial column of the Bangor Daily News, we recall how very ill she was; however, her spirit and her willpower were also strong. She told her daughter Laura that she wanted very much to attend CAFS Reunion that July and would she go with her. Laura wasn't sure her mother was up to it but said of course she would go with her. Polly pulled herself together, looked simply great, met everyone with a big smile, and probably had the best time of anyone else there because she knew how important those longtime friendships are. Polly died September 25, 1994, just three days short of her 51st birthday.


CAFS 51 - 52

PO Box 334
Nashville NC 27856-0334
Phone 252-459-7297
CAFS 71 - 72

7034 97th Ave S.W.
Lakewood WA 98498-3404
Home 253-588-4442
Work 253-984-4725
CAFS Mar 75 - Aug 76

Wayne MI
CAFS 57 - 59

17 Country Pl
Millsboro DE 19966
CAFS Nov 61 - Apr 64

Wilfred "Bud" & Mary Snyder
2147 Bennington Ct
Thousand Oaks CA 91360



          Perhaps someone out there can come up with new addresses for these people who have recently moved or changed their address:

Terry Massey formerly in Bangor ME
John LeDee Jr
Jerry Coombs formerly in Dover-Foxcroft
Ed & Judy Gilmore

These lost addresses may be traced back to the initiation of the "911" system. Please remember to include CAFS Reunion in your "Change of Address" notices!


127 Rockwood Dr
Grass Valley CA 95945

19 W. Main St, #2
Shiremanstown PA 17011-6327
Phone 717-761-6390



By e-mailing Woody Breedlove, Joe Mizda and Richard Germarch, Arn Shein actually found us. He has contacted Bill Larrabee who has been submitting copies of Arn's 1950's column from the Piscataquis Observer.Now we need his regular mailing address for the non-internet folks out there. He says:
         "I was able to find (websites pertaining to 765th RADS) but couldn't locate a particular person I could write to. My name is Arn Shein (Cpl. Arn Shein back in 1951-52 when I was stationed "Atop the Hill"). That was the name of a column I wrote for a couple of local papers in Dover-Foxcroft where I lived off base with my bride. I also began a monthly squadron newspaper which I called "The Scope".
         I was pleasantly surprised to read a couple of my "Atop the Hill" columns in the two web sites about my old base, and was also pleased to discover that my whereabouts were being sought.
         I went on to enjoy a 25-year career as sports editor of a Garnett Newspaper in New York where I also wrote a daily column. I came down with a severe case of psoriatic arthritis and other illnesses (which led to two dozen operations) and eventually moved my wife and three daughters to San Diego, California, where I eventually became totally disabled.
         After not having written for 10 years, I attended a local creative writing class at the urging of my wife. The old juices began to flow the moment I walked in that roomful of writers and I decided to try my hand at freelance writing for national magazines. After four years and 96 consecutive rejection letters, I began to click in 1983 and since then I have sold about 350 articles to more than 60 magazines, including READERS DIGEST, MODERN MATURITY, GUIDEPOSTS, and 26 religous/inspirational publications.
         I would greatly appreciate it if any (or all three) of you could let me know to whom I should write to either web site to let them know I am still alive and kicking. By the way, I'm also now teaching a couple of creative writing classes for the San Diego Community College system.
Arn Shein
San Diego, California



       Donations for Newsletter expenses may be mailed to either Pauline or Ted with checks made payable to CAFS REUNION FUND. In winter months it is best to send them to Pauline who lives nearer the credit union where your donations are deposited. These funds may also be used when reunion expenses are incurred.
       Our thanks to the following folks who generously donated recently.
       Remember: It only takes $5.00 per year to keep you on the active mailing list.
John Federowicz
Dick & Jane Loveall
Joe & Jean Notaro
Melbourne & Diana Pridgen

Lois Bowers
in Memory of CMSgt Fred Bowers

Billy and Kathy Yarber
Jack & Phyllis Shockley
Warren & Arlene VanZandt
Wilfred "Bud" & Mary Snyder
Bob Tibbetts
Steven P. Kellslman



       "Well I have recovered from neck problems that ended our trip to Maine a week earlier than we had planned. I had a pinched nerve between the 5th and 6th vertebrae. This thing comes and goes and I had started on the right treatment before I left Maine but not enough quantity. Then before I could go back for my check up on my neck I had my gall bladder out the old fashioned way, an incision. But, I am backup 100% now.
       Realized this morning I had not sent anything in to help with the newsletter so am enclosing a check to help out.
       Also found another refugee from Charleston living just 8 miles away from me. His name and address: Hal Thomas, PO Box 334, Nashville, NC 27856-0334. He was at Charleston 71-72. Not sure what he did, we never got to that as I found him over the internet in a high school website of alumni and he mentioned in a write up that he spent 71-72 at Charleston, Me. So I contacted him. His Phone number 252-459-7297.
       Thought the reunion went great. Glad to see old friends again from out of the past and you guys on the reunion committee are commended for the outstanding job you did. Next time, as a suggestion let everyone bring a door prize from their area, i.ewe., peanuts from here. Take care ... Best regards,"
Mel Pridgen
Rocky Mount, North Carolina


"Some time ago I received a news packet from the Charleston Hill Group. I remember that a newsletter subscription was mentioned. I misplaced the packet, so enclosed you will find a check.If that is not enough, please let me know. Thank you."
John Federowicz
Storrs, Connecticut


       "Please change my address as indicated (see address change section). Also, I'd like to get a copy of the Dow Pines article. I went to Aurora in 1997 and it was spooky -- all the buildings were there, but not a soul in sight. It would make a great resort, I think.
       I had tried to reserve the main lodge for a family vacation in 1996 and actually had a reservation. BUT it closed down before I ever got there. I'm surprised to hear that "individuals are still using it". I wonder who would a person contact to do so? P.S. Really happy to see the article by Col. Evans. I've often wondered what became of him. I think I'll drop him a line. He was a really good C.O. Thanks."
Bob Pare
Shiremanstown, Pennsylvania


LETTERS - NOTES cont'd..

       "Read the Oct 2000 Newsletter and as usual enjoyed all the articles. I am especially interested in the Special Orders Number 267 that Harry Durrando has (Front Page). This is about the time I was doing my thing at Dow and Charleston.I would be interested in getting a copy of this order. Please send me one. I would appreciate it. Also, attached is my check for a donation for the cause. Hope to get there some time -- especially for the next reunion."
Joe Notaro
Pittsburgh Pennsylvania


       "Just thought I would send you another check for the newsletter costs. I sent a check in June, but it has never been posted to my account so I have to assume it got lost along the way. We enjoyed the reunion very much. It was good to renew friendships and make some new ones.
       Would like to keep receiving the newsletter and that will keep us up to date. Thanks to everyone for all their hard work in keeping us informed.
Dick and Jane Loveall
Plainfield, Indiana


       "I want to send this check in memory of Frederick J. Bowers to help defray the cost of newsletter postage. Had two eye operations and all is fine.Just got back from California; my eldest son lives there."
Lois Bowers
Bangor, Maine


       "Thank you, Charleston Gang for the October 2000 Newsletter. We both enjoyed all of the news and contents in it. All is well w/us. My wife Kathy is back to work as a Cataloguer (Library in "MS"). I retired totally! My daughter has survived all of surgery and treatments for breast cancer (so far al OK). We are happy.
       I had to miss 2000 reunion but there'll be others. I am enclosing a check for the paper, etc. Sorry I've been so neglecting in past months - but - as I said: "I have been busy". (My daughter has a son 3 1/2 and one 1, scarey.) Huh!
              Great job guys & dolls."
Billy & Kathy Yarber
Ocean Springs, Mississippi


For health reason, we don't see Ted & Becky Robinson much in the winter months so we'll share part of a note received back in November:

       "Yes, I'm still here casting a thin shadow when the sun shines!! Have had some more problems and have not been out except to go .... for tests and to doctor for checks. Have bronchitis but feeling better now. I will try to keep you more informed at more frequent intervals. Becky is doing fairly good ... Thank God for all the drugs!"
Ted & Becky Robinson
Exeter, Maine


"I would like to receive the Charleston Radar Station newsletter. I've enclosed a donation to cover the costs. Please add our name and address ( see Newsletter "Found" column).
Thank you."
Bud Snyder
Thousand Oaks, California


         "I enclose a small check as an over-due updated contribution to the the he cost of the Newsletter. Sorry I haven't done this sooner. Also want to express my grateful thanks to you and the others who have done so much to keep the memories of our CAFS days together alive.
         Please continue to use our Montana address (383D Hickory St., St. Marie, MT 59231-0143. Phone 406-524-3755 Email for the newsletter. Our mail delivery here in the Philippines is a bit erratic and we always look forward to reading our mail when we arrive Montana at least once each year.
         Can't begin to express how much we look forward to the newsletter and reading the names of so many past friends, coworkers, and acquaintances. It's continually surprising the warm feelings we all share for those days at CAFS.
         I'm sure many of my coworkers remember Don Duffy who worked with us at the receiver site and with whom we shared so much off-duty pleasure. We all enjoyed dances at Monson, etc., treks to Farmington and elsewhere, and some of us went along on weekend visits with Don to his Brookline, Mass home and community and where I recall meeting his mother, brother, and other members of his family.
         Upon reassignment from CAFS to England and then France in 1959, I again served with Don at SHAPE Headquarters in Paris, although in different units (I was in SAC and he in USAFE) where we roomed together for a time. Don and I attended University of Maryland classes together where he was learning the French language and eventually met and married a beautiful French girl. Don applied for and was accepted for training as an Army helicopter pilot and the last I heard of him (probably about 1963) he was an Army warrant officer in Fort Huachuca, Arizona.
         Recently while searching for family information in the Social Security Death Index, I ran across this information about Donald Duffy that I sincerely hope isn't the Don Duffy we knew: 'Donald Duffy, SS#033-24-1375, Born: May 24, 1933, SS Issued in Mass., Died Aug 1976, Residence code:       Europe (U.S. Consulate), ZIP code of last known residence: XX912, Note: The Social Security Administration places XX in the ZIP Code field to indicate U.S. Consulate locations: For XX912, the code to use for mailing is 58100. The consulates location is: France (Paris.)'
         Do any others have any information on Don Duffy ? Thanks again and please keep the Newsletter coming. Sincerely,"
Bob Tibbetts
Baguio City, Philippines


         The committee heard from Steven P. Kesselman who was at Charleston AFS 1972 - 75. He recently retired as a Lt Col from the US Air Force Reserve but still works for the city of Albuquerque Police Fire Fleet Management Division as parts Manager.
         Work e-mail address:
         Home e-mail:



         "I was stationed at CAFS from Nov 1961 until Apr 1964. I worked in the radar maintenance section. Worked on the FPS-20 and FPS-6. I was there during the installation of the FPS-27 , and worked on it for about 3 months. I lived off base in Dover Foxcroft with my wife. We rented an apartment from Ray Bishop on 6 East Main St. The apartment caught fire in January of 1962 and we, along with 2 other CAFS families lost everything. Perhaps some of you will remember the fire.
         I left CAFS in April 1964 and was assigned to Caswell AFS, Me. I remember a lot of good times at the NCO Club and would like to hear from members of the 765th who were there during 61 - 64. I now live in Millsboro, DE. Retired from the AF in 1975 and retired from civilian employment in January 1999. I just found this web page today. Sorry I missed the reunion. Hopefully, I'll go on a mailing list and get the notice for the next reunion in time to attend. Let me hear from you radar site folks."
Larry D. Whitten
Millsboro, Delaware


"Absolutely loved my assignment there (at CAFS) from 1957 - 59. Lots of good memories & good people."
Terry D. Calkins
                  '57 - '59
Wayne, Michigan



         William "Bill" Larrabee was written up in the Piscataquis Observer for an honor bestowed upon him by the National Weather Service. He received the John Campanius Holm Award, the weather service's highest volunteer honor. The award, named for the Lutheran minister who was the first person known to have taken systematic weather observations in the American Colonies, is granted each year to only 25 of the more than 12,000 cooperative weather observers in the U.S. Bill was one of three observers to be selected this year from the National Weather Service's Eastern Region and the only one from Maine to be recognized.

by Cpl Arn Shein
February 28, 1952, Piscataquis Observer

         In the near future, a bloodmobile will tour throughout the county. We of the 765th, along with you of Piscataquis County, have been asked to give of our blood now so that ..........

(editor's note - photocopy problems - remainder of this story will be in next newsletter.)


In the last newsletter we mentioned that Hank Sokolovich stationed at Dow AFB 1957 - 1965 had contacted Woody via the Internet. He gave his e-mail address as which was attempted by both Woody and Joe but their messages kept coming back. When you note that we've had problems, would you please take it upon yourself to see if your server will get a message through to these people? We hate to see interested people "hung out to dry" with no way for us to contact them.


         Air Defense Radar Veterans Assn
         (article: memories of Thule)
(511ACWRON Reunion info)

903AC&W, Gettysburg AFS SD, 1955 - 68, second reunion 6 - 8 Jul 01, contact Bernie Webb, 605-765-9562

786AC&W, Minot AFS ND, tentative reunion 22 -24 Jun 01, contact Gene McManus,


by Pauline Sodermark

         The day before the Oklahoma City Federal Building was bombed, I was on a tour of the National Weather Service at the Kansas City Federal Building. During the initial investigation into the Oklahoma City bombing, it was discovered that the perpetrators had come to the Kansas City area to pick up the vehicles and materials to make the explosives that they had used.
         On April 3, 2001, one of the bombers admitted that the Kansas City Federal Building was one of the five possible sites for their terrorist act.
         I am alive and I am well because of a day's difference and a city's difference. Neither of these were things I could control. All in all, it does give a person reason to ponder their possible fate and how things might have turned out differently ......IF .


Joe Mizda
66 Fourth St, Bangor ME 04401
(Keeper of the Mailing List)

Ted Robinson
557 Stetson Rd, Exeter ME 04435
(Keeper of the Funds)

Peter Caristi
195 Garland St, Bangor ME 04401 
(Reunion Emcee)

Woody Breedlove
211 Maple St, Bangor ME 04401 
(E-mail Watch & Meeting Place)

Pauline Sodermark
449 Tate Rd, Corinth ME 04427 
(Keeper of the Newsletter)

Volunteers: Greg Hildreth, Margaret McKinney, Becky Robinson, Chuck
Thompson, Marcia Hatch


Archives: Charleston AF Station Newsletters online:
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