Our third reunion, held in conjunction with the SUN
CITY “ALL AIRBORNE” FIESTA V – was a resounding success. Hosted by the
ROY P. BENAVIDEZ-ROBERT PATTERSON (BP) Chapter, the 82nd Airborne in El
Paso, Texas. If you missed this event, you missed a lot!
JOHN CEBALLOS, BP chapter chairman, managed to cram nearly non-stop
entertainment and activities into the agenda. Performances by local
talent included Line Dancers; Ballet Folklorico; Mariachi groups; Native
American dancers; the Fort Bliss Jazz Ensemble and Disco music.
Attended by many, “VIVA EL PASO”, a musical drama staged at
nearby McKelligon Canyon’s outdoor amphitheatre, was an informative and
dazzlingly colorful review of “4 CENTURIES, 4 CULTURES AND 1 CITY.” At
least 40 performers participated in the multiple acts staged during the
course of the evening.
While most activities were held in the El Paso Marriott Airport
Hotel, the BP association’s Partida Hall was the site of a Fajita Buffet
lunch on Saturday as well as a Menudo and Tamales lunch on Monday. Yum!
So, if you missed it, slap your forehead and say ”I should have
NEW DIRECTORS ELECTED - the Family & Friends of the 508th
PIR business meeting held during the El Paso reunion included election
of the Board of Directors for Fiscal 2009. Those elected were Barry
Deere, Dick O’Donnell, Troy Palmer, Jan Silver and Tom Stumpner.
508th DEPLOYMENT- In preparedness for deployment to
Afghanistan scheduled for the 19th of August, the 4th Brigade Combat
Team cased its colors, including those of the 508th on August 7th.
CSM (ret.) ROCK MERRITT with the Brigade Commander, COL DRINKWINE,
had the honor to case the 508th Colors.
ROCK was also a guest speaker relating the honor and respect due
to unit colors and what they stand for. He also mentioned that when GEN
CUSTER was killed in battle, the 7th Calvary Regiment Colors were laying
beside him and even the Indians respected the Colors as they left them
lying next to him. After the ceremony the whole Brigade enjoyed a huge
PASSAGES – HEIMER SWANSON (Service Co) wrote to advise us
that DAVID OLDEMEYER lost his wife, ELIZABETH “LIB” on August 6th after
an extended illness. Funeral services were held Monday, August 10 at
First Presbyterian Church in Holland, Michigan.
“DAVE”, HEIMER wrote, “was a trooper in Service Company and
served as chaplain’s assistant to Chaplain ELDER during WW-II. Both
DAVE and LIB had been regular attendees at reunions held by the 508th
PIR (WW-II) Association.” Send condolences to DAVID OLDMEYER, 135 Ridge
View Dr, Pipestone, MN 56164.
BOB CHISOLM’s wife MARGARET succumbed to cardiac arrest on August
15th. They had been married for sixty-three years. Arrangements were
tentatively scheduled for August 24th with burial in the Fort Bliss
Condolences may be sent to LTC (ret.) ROBERT E. CHISOLM, 7 Cielo
Lindo, Anthony, NM 88021-9259.
MORNING REPORTS A VALUABLE RESOURCE – Morning Reports (MRs)
for the period January 1944 through May 1945 were recently acquired
thanks to the generous donations of many members of the 508th family.
These reports were filed daily by each company and recorded various
personnel details such as transfers into or out of the company. During
combat periods other critical information such as date, name, rank and
ASN of those missing, wounded or killed were documented.
Details found in the MRs have already proven to be highly
beneficial. Some 508ers who had previously been unable to file a
successful VA claim are now able to do so since the date of their wound
was documented in the MR.
Additionally, some men on the 508th Honor Roll had previously been
listed with only a general date of death but a specific date is now
known thanks to the MR entries.
MORNING REPORTS PHASE TWO - an order has now been placed
for the earlier Morning Reports (October 1942 through December 1943).
The cost for acquiring these files is $1,500 and donations will be
gratefully accepted. Please write “Morning Reports” on the memo line of
your check to ensure the accounting is kept straight and make them
payable to “F&F 508th PIR Association”. Mailing address for our
treasurer is: ELLEN PETERS, 3630 Townsend Dr, Dallas, TX 75229.
SEND NEWS FOR THE COLUMN
760 Conestee Drive
Melbourne, FL 32904
PH: (321) 759-6174
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