Tim's June 2021Checkpoints Class News Article

HELLO ’68!! Based on correspondence received over the winter from the New York Island to the Gulfstream Waters to the Redwood Forest, the singular concern from “blue blanket” ‘68ers in Checkpoints Land is whether they received their Pfizer, Moderna, or Johnson & Johnson vaccine shots. Many thanks to our Class’ doctors for chiming in with timely advice and for Operation Warp Speed that yielded such fantastic results in record time. And, to the new guys on the block, the Class of 2021, congratulations for your many successes and accomplishments as cadets. Welcome to the Long Blue Line!

“Jim and Brinda Thompson Relaxing”

‘68ER IN TRANSITION: Whilst some of you senior citizens are comfortably ensconced in your retirement abodes, Jim and Brinda Thompson decided to follow Horace Greeley’s advice to “Go West” by selling their farm in Tennessee and moving to the higher and drier environs of Santa Fe, New Mexico. Jim writes, “As you can imagine, we are in the throes of getting settled in the new home. We are in the midst of remodeling the house, so presently, we have no kitchen, no den and the kitchen has no floor, no countertops, and no appliances. In fact, we are living in a new house as if it were a tent!” Best wishes to Jim and Brinda for a grand reveal when their fixer-upper is ready for prime time.

USAFA RECOGNIZES ‘68ER FOR DISTINGUISHED SERVICE: “Each year, the USAFA Distinguished Service Award is presented by the Superintendent to a military person, civilian, or group, whose contributions have had a distinct impact on the morale or well-being of the Air Force Academy. . . . This award is intended to recognize those who contribute not as part of their official duty, but through their personal generosity and dedication to the institution.” The 2020 recipient of this award is our classmate, Garry Dudley for his service as the former President of the Academy’s Association of Graduates’ Advisory Senate and as a guest lecturer in the school’s Management Department. A hearty ’68 congratulations and thanks to Garry for his service! You may recall that another classmate, Carl Janssen, received this same honor in 2017.

“Gene and Jan Rose in the Great Outdoors”

WHO YOU GONNA CALL?: When the immediate word needs to go out far and wide for Class news, you can bet that Gene Rose will be the focal point for that communication. We are indebted to Gene’s faithfulness by keeping us all in the current affairs loop. Gene writes, “Jan and I have both been well and have had our vaccinations. We miss the opportunity for travel—particularly international—but hope that will open up soon. We have become experts at video chat with family and friends. I try to play golf and fish when I can, and Jan has been busy with crafts and home improvements. Frequent contact with classmates in the Colorado Springs areas has kept us optimistic throughout the pandemic.

“Begert Family Unmasked. L-R: Grandson, Will; Son-in-Law, Joe; Daughter, Kary; Bill; Jody; and Son, Bill. Not pictured: Granddaughter, Hannah, Sophomore at University of Colorado.”

In a note from Bill Begert, he writes, “Jody and I split our time between our lake cottage in Maine and our house in Santa Barbara. We put a few miles on our F-150 crossing the county twice a year, but it works for us. I’m getting in about 175 rounds of golf per year. Plus, I stay busy with some consulting with Pratt & Whitney, as well as some “give back” efforts. I’m Chairman of the Falcon Foundation (Tony Robertson is the Vice Chairman). The Foundation provides Prep School Scholarships to motivated young people who want to attend the Academy, but need a little help to achieve their dream.” Thanks for the update on your activities, Bill.

THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS: The months from January through March 2021 have been heart-breaking in the loss of so many dear friends and classmates. During this period, the following classmates have passed away: Richard (DickE) Earl Fallon, in Fort Walton Beach, Florida on 6 January 2021; Donald Francis Motz, in Honolulu, Hawaii on 13 January 2021; Cort Louis Durocher, in West Palm Beach, Florida on 5 February 2021; Jack Douglas Saunders, in Lake Gaston, North Carolina on 8 February 2021; Thomas Madison McCloy, in Colorado Springs, Colorado on 13 March 2021; and William Van Amerogen in Tuscon, Arizona on 26 March 2021. Since space for this column is limited, I request that you go to our Class website and click on the Memoriam section to receive additional information about classmates who are gone by not forgotten. Please pray for all who are in need of your caring and friendship during their time of sorrow and suffering.

THAT'S A WRAP: : Mind the flak; keep ‘em flying, and keep those cards, letters, e-mails, and photos coming in to Pat Russell and me. Ciao for now. Tim

Return to Scribe's Page