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Charleston Air Force Station

Charleston, Maine


MAY  1999

After the January Newsletter mailing, we have another group returned for either incorrect addresses or forwarding time expired.  If anyone knows the whereabouts of the following people, please contact Joe Mizda with the updated info:

Jim Gaughan (forwarding time expired) 
Peter Barton (unable to forward) 
Terry Mitchell (not known) 
Kenneth Pinette (insufficient address) 
Glen Butler (no such address!) 
Mr & Mrs Howard Mitchell (not known)


Charles & Shirley Donahue 
1845 Heathglen Cr 
North Vernon IN 47265 

Richard Seher 
618 Windrow Rd SE 
Marietta GA 30067


The following folks undoubtedly enjoy receiving the CAFS Newsletter and show it by their support. 
Robbie & Irma Robertson 
Charles & Shirley Donahue
Joseph & Jean Mitchell 
George C. Marvin 
James & Jean Silvius

The Newsletter costs approximately $225 per issue to cover printing, envelopes, and postage. ($225 x 4 mailings = $900 annually).
  So far we all have been receiving it through the good graces of people like the donors listed in each issue of the newsletter.  Many are receiving the mailings at the expense of a few... and, like all things, the expenses get higher every year.  Beginning with the July issue only those who have donated in the past by mail or donated when attending reunions will continue to get the Newsletter.  All others who wish to continue receiving the Newsletter may do so at  $5 for the entire year.  Otherwise, CAFSers who do not "subscribe" (or donate) WILL receive a mailing every other year to announce the location and date of the Reunion, info package, plus reservation forms.  Fair enough?
        Remember this Reunion Committee is what our Treasurer Ted Robinson calls a "shoestring operation" and you know from time to time the strings wear thin.  There is no other source of income other than the donations from YOU.< /FONT > 

    All you others who have continuously supported the Newsletter, you know who you are.  Rest assured YOU will continue to receive the mailing EVERY TIME!


We are sad to report the deaths of two of our group who were stationed at Charleston in the 1969-1976 time period.  Our sincere sympathies to their families.  The following is a portion of the obituaries from the Bangor Daily News: 

      Kenduskeag, Maine -- Gordon B. White Sr.,65, husband of Joyce (Seamans) White, died Feb 7, 1999, at the Maine Veterans Home, Bangor.  He was born in Danbury, Conn., June 23, 1933, the son of Harold and Alice (Poirier) White.   He was a graduate of Foxcroft Academy and served in the USAF for 21 years, retiring as staff sergeant and received the Commendation Medal.  Gordon was employed in the maintenance department the University of Maine, Orono, for 17 years where he also earned a degree in business management.  Interment will be in Maine Veterans Memorial Cemetary in Augusta.  Gifts in his memory may be sent to the Maine Veterans Home, Resident Council, 44 Hogan Road, Bangor, Maine 04401.   Those who knew Gordon may wish to send a card or note to his wife Joyce White, P.O. Box 552, Kenduskeag, ME 04450. 

     Corinth -- Jerry Lee Waldron., 62, husband of Judith Nicholson Waldron, died Feb 26, 1999, at a Bangor hospital after a brief illness.  He was born July 21, 1936, in Wellston, Ohio, the son of Sarah Waldron Barnett and Raymond Waldron.  Jerry served 23 years in the USAF, stationed at Charleston Air Force Station from 1971 - 1976, when he retired.  A gravesite service will be announced in the spring.  In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to Capital Campaign, in care of Development Office at St. Joseph's Hospital, 900 Broadway, Bangor 04401.      Those who knew Jerry may wish to send a card or note to his wife Judith Waldron, P.O. Box, Corinth, Maine 04427. 

    Remember Ed Cox who wa assigend to the 27 Tower from 1974-1976?  Well, he contacted one of the Reunion Committee and here is his address:

Edward J. Cox 
1161 Oak Dale Dr 
Sanatoga, PA 19464 

          "enclosing a donation (meant to do this earlier) for newsletter, etc.  You certainly have done a great job!  We just had lunch with the Pechaceks, Lovealls, and Hatts.  Always fun!  Also enclosing a few memories about our early Dover-Foxcroft days.
  Hope this finds you well and happy.  All's well here (Melbourne FL) but we need rain desperately.  The fires already started and looks worse than last year. Oh, our E-mail is:
Thanks to all! 
Jean & & James Sylvius - of the nifty-fifties.

     As per 765th Aircraft Control and Warning Squadron (ADC) Special Orders Number 204-A dated 22 December 1958, Major George C. Marvin, 38226A, this Squadron, this Station, was assigned Government Quarters #155, this Station, effective 20 December 1958.  Major Marvin says,.. "clearly remember the Squadron personnel cut a Christmas tree for us.  I came to the 765th after a year as C.O. at St. Anthony AFS, Newfoundland, BY CHOICE!  An ADC General asked me if I wished to be assigned to ADC Hdqs.  Said what about a Squadron in Maine. Really?  He said yes.  Within 1/2 hour he called to say that 765th would be my assignment.  Doc Stitham told me on arrival that no C.O. lasted a year at Charleston AFS since activated and thought I would not also.  Well, I was finally reassigned in November 1964!  Col Doss did not want me to leave.  He was a fine boss.  Was on leave when reporting.  I assumed command 25th for my good reason.  Dick Whelan wanted to be acting C.O. a bit longer :) ." 
George Marvin -- '58 -'64

       Remember John Ford Sr from  the January newsletter?  I heard from him with a note on his personally designed note paper, "Pauline: Got my copy of the CAFS newsletter today and as usual -- "Great job!".  My thanks for the plug and spread from the Bangor Daily News regarding my calendar business, etc.  I appreciate all the help I can get!  This one is on me -- keep up the good work.  Retired Sheriff, John A. Ford Sr.   He enclosed a copy of THE SPORTSMAN CALENDAR for 1999.  Thanks, John, for the calendar which I'll say has super art work, plus my husband and I are always looking for a calendar with the moon phases so we can plant our gardens at the proper time! Each month also has one of John's great stories of his Game Warden days.  Thanks, John, but "plugs" are always free.  Maybe later on we will go "commercial". :) 
Pauline Sodermark - '74-'79.

     "Just to let you know that we appreciate your keeping us on the mailing list for so long. -- just haven't been able to get to any of the reunions, but maybe one of these days!  We do enjoy hearing the news of the area and people there.  Happy to see the list of E-mail addresses.. we do recognize some of the folks.   Enclosing a check to help with the mailings.  Thanks again." 
Fran & Pat Denniston '67-'69 


    Dale Willis of the old 765th Comm Center has been frequenting local auctions.  He wants you all to know that his address has changed to RR#2 Box 1168,  Carmel, ME 04419.  His phone should be connected shortly.

   Thanks for sending the (Reunion) shirts.  They are great.   I had trouble getting my first check when I retired way back when, 10 yrs ago.  After 3 mos no money.  Phone calls to OPM (Office of Personnel Management) got things rolling.  It was dry during those 3 mos!!  Irma and I really enjoyed our trip to Maine and the Reunion.  We were gone from Virginia nearly 4 weeks.  We visited relatives in Bangor, Lincoln, Swanville (my ole home town), and Winthrop, also an AF buddy from the 50's in New Hartford, Ct.  So you can see we made the most of our trip.  If things work outright, we will be back in the Swanville area this coming summer.  I am trying to rent a cottage on Swan Lake for 2 weeks.
  We haven't said much about the Reunion for year 2000 yet.  Hope we can make the trip.  A lot depends on our health -- the years are rolling up.  As for comments on location for 2000 Reunion, where would troops stay for lodging in Corinth?  Seems like people in travel status would have hard time putting together a pot-luck meal.  This is my 2 cents worth of info.  I have enclosed a small donation.  See ya all down the road." 
Irma & Robbin Robertson - '66-'68

        Pauline got a phone call from Charles Donahue, now living in Indiana, who was stationed on the hill in 1957 assigned to the Orderly RoomHe received word of the the CAFS Newsletter and Reunions from Seiferd Schultz and Charles in turn gave us the adress for Richard Seher.  That's how it all started.  Usually each person we find has the address of at least one other CAFSer,  It's kind of like a chain letter, but much, much better results and no luck involved. 

      "Thank you for the newsletter.  Hope this donation helps some with the expenses.  I can't tell you how much we've enjoyed these reunions.  Even the one in Dayton was fun.  We have made new friends at the reunions, people we were never stationed with in Maine but through our mutual friends the Quinns it seems we always knew them. The story about the three airmen who capsized in their aluminum boat brought back memories to me.  We had been at Charleston just 2 months when that happened.  Mrs. Butler lived across the road from us in West Charleston.  Lt Etheridge came to our house to ask us to stay with Mrs. Butler.  When I got there, the First Sgt's wife Mrs. Murray and other wives from the base were there.  Mrs. Butler had a baby, too.  That was the first experience I had to see the closeness and kindness of our fellow dependents.     Raymond Mohler was one of my husband's troops.  There was a story that Mohler had another close call in Japan.  It seems on a first flight he had to bail out of an aircraft.
  See you in July 2000." 
Jean & Joseph Mitchell -'59-'63 

    "As was said in the January newsletter...I should have written three years ago...but... no excuse! 
I have many fond memories of the people I was stationed with at Charleston from Jan 62 to Feb 66.  Unfortunately, I've lost track of most of them and hope that your newsletter will help me re-establish contact. 
My tour at Charleston is the basis for some of the most enduring memories of my life.  I still remember the wild snow storms, dodging car antennas while crawling on our stomachs to the Power Plant to shovel coal because the auto-stokers were without power.  I remember the Rec Hall and bowling alley burning to the ground;  I remember the unfortunate auto accident when two of our airmen were killed; I remember pulling KP under the tutelage of Jerry Slack;  I remember the entire block-house crew gathering in the Comm Center to play Hearts (and tend the switchboard!) during night shifts; I remember spending the night in the dining hall because that was the only building with adequate heat; I remember Major George Marvin slipping on the very highly waxed barracks floor during an Inspection.
  As an AC&W Radar Repairman, I worked in the 20-Tower for a year or two then worked for Jack Lanpher in MCC for a couple more years.  Archie Fairbrother, John Clements, (Sgt) Fowler, Al Smith, Bill Carroll, Norm Potvin, (Sgt) Cloutier, Lee Hough, are some of the names I remember most from the wok environment. I still run into Norm Potvin every year or so in the Lewiston area and I spoke to John Clements a few years ago, but all the others have faded into the past.
   I frequently wonder whatever happened to my old barracks buddies like Tom Hileman (my best man!), Doug Braun, wild man Bob Weaver, Bob Williams, Don Carrigan and his Mercury Turnpike Cruiser, Tony Bucci.  What about Ambrose Shappy??  Danna Cyr?  Smutny?   I got a phone call from Continental Airlines Captain Doug Braun several years ago but have not been able to stay in touch with him.
  After leaving Charleston in 1966, I was transferred to Alaska for a 1 year remote tour, then to Brookley AFB in Mobile, Alabama, and Wright-patterson with GEEIA until I got out of the service in 1973.  I've been employed by Picker International Corp, a manufacturer of Medical Diagnostic equipment such as X-ray machines, CT and MRI Scanners.
   I'm sure that I've forgotten the names of many of my od friends and acquaintances from Charleston during 1962 to 1966 and I apologize for not acknowledging them here.  I would like to hear from anyone who was at Charleston during that period...we'll jog each other's memories.
  PS:  I may have been know as "Frenchie" back then!!  
Maurice "Buzz" Bussiere - '62 - '66 

by Jean Silvius - '55-'59

     Although our first home in Dover-Foxcroft has been torn down, the memories of those days are as fresh as ever.   We had the only apartment where you entered through the bathroom!    We "car pooled" to Bangor for prenatal checkups until Dr Stitham took over.   Needless to say, the men loved driving all that way with 4 or 5 pregnant women at one time  Our friends, Harv and Lydia Pechacek lived over the LaPointe's and Leo had a rubbish business.  Every so often he would fill his truck with hay and take us on a hayride.  It was a blast!  We swam in Sebec Lake and played lots of Michigan Rummy.  We went to dances and Bingo at the base.   Our wives club was very active and we met at one another's homes.  We shared everything from cars to baby food and watched each others children.  We celebrated each others promotions, weddings, and new babies....some became grandparents.     Some of us weighed our babies on Mac Blethen's meat scales... Mac was a local grocer who let us buy now and pay later.    The men worked many extra jobs to help make ends meet.  They sold cars, worked on farms, clerked at the grocery store, picked potatoes, and worked at the tannery.  They helped one another keep their cars on the road also.      Like many good townfolk, our landlords, Dot and Dave Potter, became surrogate grandparents.     On the "rare" occasion that there was a rental problem, Capt Whelan and his wife Muriel were there to set things straight for "their" airmen and their families.     As the late John Cloyd said, "We grew up together."  The nice thing is, many, many of us have continued our friendship through the years, closing in on half a century pretty soon!  That, in itself, is testimony to the nice people of Maine, the caring attitude of the 50's and to the super men and women of Charleston AFS!  We'll remember those days forever, and always with deep affection and appreciation.

   As we make the transition to a pay-as-you-go system with the Newsletter, please bear with us if we make errors.  Let us know as soon as possible so we may correct them.

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