Checkpoints Spring 2007
40411 Tesoro Lane
Palmdale, CA 93551
Home: (661) 274-2201
Work: (661) 824-6426
I’m very sad to report for those who haven’t heard of Jim Arnold’s passing in March. Jim was a close friend during our cadet days and we worked together on the 25th Reunion Committee. Thanks to much of Jim’s efforts, the reunion was the success that it was. Mike Skolaut dropped a note sharing that he was able to attend Jim’s funeral at the Academy chapel. Jim’s widow Julie and sons James and Joseph asked Mike to say a few words while Bob Herris read High Flight at the grave site. Those of us who knew Jim believe beyond a shadow of a doubt that he is in a much better place with his Savior but we will miss him anyway.
On a bit happier note, Mike also reported that Ed Hunt ill be retiring in April and has taken a Senior Civilian Attorney position with the Space and Missile Defense Command in Colorado Springs. He and bride Kala visited Ed and Karen in Omaha last summer, and had a great time (as usual). Thanks for keeping us informed Mike.
Got a nice note and great pix from Dave McLeran. The first is of Dave and Tiger Ten classmate John Follman when they flew a Southwest trip together this past March. John retired out of the Niagara Guard and lives in upstate New York with his bride of (almost) 29 years, Yvonne. John joins Dave along with Tom Ball, Jon Weiss, and Bob Heim, as '78 10th Squadron alumni flying for Southwest. Dave remembered that the last time he and John flew together, they made an emergency landing in a T-38 at Mather AFB on the Friday night that the world found out who shot JR. He was happy to report that this flight turned out a bit better
Dave also sent a picture as the proud dad with son Charlie ('05) after earning his wings at Laughlin AFB last December. Charlie goes to Luke this summer for F-16 training. Great news Dave…thanks for the info!
Also received several messages and different shots of the same picture that was taken at Bob Barton’s house in Attleboro, Mass for his surprise 50th birthday party. I tried to pick the best shot so from left to right are Ole Olsen (Delta captain flying international 767s and living in Ft Worth), Ernie StGelais (flew in from the Springs with bride Marie where he is quite the entrepreneur having started two very successful companies), birthday boy Bob, Eric Brown (also living in Ft Worth after having retired around the 20 year point and relocating to Ft Worth from Cape Cod—has been with American the past 8 years and is currently a 737 FO) and Steve Lofgren (flew in from Chapel Hill NC with daughter Melanie where Steve runs the UNC dorm program—Bob and bride Sally are Melanie’s godparents). Eric provided an interesting aside in that he, Bob, Ernie were the three CS-31 squadron commanders firstie year with Bob snagging squadron commander of the year for our class. Great work gents…thanks and happy birthday Bob!
Lastly, I received a note from Mr. Reliable, Goldie Goldfein along with a picture of several classmates who got together at Goldie and Jeanne’s home while at Langley for the CAF commander’s conference this past December when Goldie was the ACC Vice (is now the Deputy Director of the Joint Staff). Along with the four-stars the DOs and XPs (now use legacy designations of A-3 and A-5) of the MAJCOM attend by tradition. Goldie attended as the ACC Vice host unit and noted that our class dominates the DO and XP positions at the USAF MAJCOMs. From left to right are Goldie and Jeanne, ACC/CV, Tanker Snyder, PACAF/XP (plans to hang it up in the near future, Mike “Snod” Snodgrass, USAFE/XP, Doug and Claudia Raaberg (just pinned on his second star), Don Alston, AFSPC/DO, and the Mark Zamzow, AETC/DO.
Goldie noted how incredibly cool it is that we have so many senior leaders in key positions guiding the AF. He really piqued my interest , so being the curious type and having a couple hours to burn yesterday at Dyess Base Ops (with this deadline looming as usual) while waiting for the thunderstorms to go away at Barksdale I did some research on the AF web site. I perused the GO bios and it was utterly astounding just how dominate as a class we are in the upper echelons of the AF—think you’ll feel the same way. In addition to the positions above (in no particular order—hope I don’t leave anyone out…if I do, my humblest apologies):
‘78 is Great!
Class of 1978 - United States Air Force Academy
as of 27 Feb 2016