WINTER 2003 John G. Esposito, Editor
A MESSAGE FROM THE WEBMASTER:
Call for Biographies
The Association Webmaster wants to publish your biography on the VPB-111/ VP-21 Veterans Association website. If you were a member of either VB-111, VPB-111, VP-111, VP(HL)-11or VP-21, then you are part of our history, as well as part of the U.S. Navy's history.
While the basics of our squadrons' histories are formally documented in various publications, incuding our own website History Pages, most individual personal histories are not. When I accepted the post of website director, one of my primary goals was to gather those histories in the form of biographies. Who were these individuals who made our squadrons function? Who were those willing to go into Harm's Way? When did they join the Navy? Where did they grow up? What were their jobs in the squadron? In other Navy assignments? What were some of their memorable events? What did they do after the Navy? What about their families? What are they doing now?
These are some of the things I'm sure we would all like to know about our old shipmates, our brethren - about those who were in the squadron when we were, to be sure, but also about those shipmates who preceeded us and prepared the way, and those whom we passed the baton onto. All of us, from 1943 to 1969, worked and played together, sacrificed and celebrated together, and placed our lives in each other's hands on a daily basis. That's how spirit is born. Performing our duty and measuring up helped our character to develop. We were, and remain, family. It's why we look forward to seeing each other again. It's what makes us proud to have served together. It's what makes us proud to have been American sailors.
So I want your story. I want to make it available to all who want to read it, whether it be your brethren shipmates, historians, family, or friends. I want photos too; ideally of when you first joined the Navy, during your squadron days, and the present. You can email your biography and photos to me, or send them to me via the USPS.
Please! Don't be shy. I know many of us are reluctant to talk about ourselves. I had to hound and shame in order to get the few biographies we have posted so far (a motley crew at that). And in practicing what I preach, I put mine in first. Just remember that you're among friends here. And don't worry about the technicalities of structure, grammar, or spelling. I'll make that my job (or maybe my wife's). Just talk about yourself and work in answers to the following questions:
Where did you grow up?
When did you join the Navy?
When were you in VPB-111 and/ or VP-21?
What was your job in the squadron?
Talk about a memorable event or two - and name names.
If you made the Navy a career, what were your other assignments?
What did you do after the Navy?
What are you doing now?
Talk about your family (spouse's name, children's names, grandchildren, etc).
If you have access to our website, you can use the already published biographies as examples.
Frank Balogh Jr.
1749 Burroughs Drive
Dayton, OH 45406
We have two url addresses for the VPB-111/ VP-21 website. Either one gets you to our site: www.VPB-111.org or www.VP-21.org .
The site logged it's 1000th. visitor on 01/29/03, and so far I've heard of no complaints (oh allright, maybe a minor one concerning those pesky pop-up advertisements you get when you visit the LogBook (Guestbook) or the Message Board)). They're the price we pay for a free service (did I just make an oxymoron?). However, I also know that most of our membership probably wouldn't complain unless it was really necessary. So let me put on my thick skin and invite your constructive criticisms toward making a better site.
While we've had over 1000 site visitors, only 42 visitors made an entry in the LogBook, and all but one or two of these were members of our Association. I doubt the other 900+ visitors were strangers who just happened upon our site. So if you visit the site and have never "logged in", please do so at least once on your next visit.
I expressed my surprise to Chairman, Bill Locke, about what I thought was pretty sparse traffic on our Message Board - especially since I know first-hand what a bunch of ScuttleButt storytellers most of you are. But Bill believes that these things are just slow in developing. I would love to see some more war stories out there though. But you can talk about anything you desire (well..most anything). We do want to keep it respectful.
We want to keep our Rosters accurate. Ocaisionally I'll be going through them and find the odd typo or other obvious mistakes (there are no doubt many more to find), and also ocaisionally someone will make me aware of other errors. However, I would appreciate the participation of the general membership in calling my attention to these errors. If you find an error, let me know about it and I'll fix it.
This is my first attempt at creating and managing a website, so I've a lot to learn yet. This site represents my best thinking about what a site should do - and not do. But my 6th., 7th., and 8th. grade teacher at St, Joe's, sister Mary Margaret, SM, always reminded me that I had a lazy mind, (she was correct of course) so please tell me your ideas which may make something good, better. Also, show me whatever I'm overlooking or doing incorrectly, or just ways to improve things. But please don't tell sister Mary Margaret.
lOOKING FORWARD TO SEEING EVERYONE IN PENSACOLA THIS NOVEMBER.
Frank Balogh Jr.
Airmail 7, 58-61
A MESSAGE FROM THE EDITOR:
Continuing the Call for Board of Directors Back-up: We are continuing to seek `back-up' persons to support our Board of Directors in the unforeseen event that one of us should suddenly become incapacitated. If you feel that you would like to assist us on any of these position that are referenced on the back cover of this newsletter, contact the respective person at the address shown. We would like very much to have you stand by to become a member of our team. This readiness on your part is considered to be vital to the future success of our association. Do something different. Make a difference.
DONATIONS RECENTLY RECEIVED:
The following persons have graciously made donations, which are so vital to keeping a financial posture airborne:
Helen R. Beneigh, James Berchak, Richard F. Bates, Edward F. Bihl, Harry A. Burgess, Nelson R. Castle, Harry A. Dunlap, James C. Gibson, Lila Graham, Donald L. Gray, Gary Gross, William Hamilton, J.W. (Bud) Hoar, James D. Jessen, William Locke, John E. Lonergan, John E. Maryon, John J. McCarthy, William B. O'Connell, John W. Orrill, Leonard Parent, Gordon L. Peterson,, Gary N. Phillips, Jerold L. Preston, Joseph E. Sheehan, Fred E. Sithens, John R. Smithson, Dale N. Varner, Edward H. Vaughan, William S. Webster, Bruce T. Wiley.
To those of you who submitted donations during the months of October and November of last year, I wish to apologize. Due to a family health problem I was unable to submit your names to our editor before the publishing deadline. Your names are included in the above list. Again, I sincerely apologize.
Your generosity is most appreciated and helps to keep our Association solvent.
PLEASE NOTE: The VPB-111/VP-21 Veterans Association charges no dues. Our operations are totally supported by the generous contributions of our membership, and by the sale of our squadron products. The Association comes under Section 501 © (19) of the Internal Revenue Code as “not for profit” organization. As such, contributions are legitimate tax deductions. Please make your contribution checks payable to the `VPB-111/VP-21 Veterans Association', and forward them to Treasurer, Richard S. Webb, 219 Montoya Drive, Lady Lake, FL, 32159-8642.
STOREKEEPER /DIRECTOR, GARY GROSS, REPORTS:
THE FOLLOWING ARTICLES ARE AVAILABLE FROM SMALL STORES:
The following items continue to remain on sale:
Khaki hats with your choice: Blackjack, Turtle, or Dumbo patch. $18.00.
White golf shirts: super quality VPB111/VP21 Veterans Association. $25.00.
White ball caps with VP21 logo. $10.00.
White ball caps with Flight Wings and VPB111/VP21. $10.00.
Patches: Blackjack, Dumbo, or Turtle. $6.34.
Buttons: Blackjack, Dumbo or Turtle. $1.84
The Story of VPB111 Contact Gary for cost.
Low Level Liberators $29.00. Black and white print of P2V7 signed and numbered by artist David Howath. $10.00
NEW ITEM: Customized coffee mugs $25.00. Please print your name as you wish it to appear and your choice of rate, or flight wings.
All prices include postage.
4595S. Robert Blake Ave.
Inverness, FL 34452-7820
E-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org
FEBRUARY EDITION: 2003
VPB-111/VP-21 VETERANS ASSOCIATION
A non-profit, fraternal, and historical association devoted to the reestablishment of contact with shipmates of the past, to strengthen the camaraderie among its members, to record and preserve the memories and incidents of the Association, to preserve the memory of departed shipmates, and to promote the comfort and welfare of its members and survivors. No dues are assessed!
Wallace L. Lightfoot, Chairman Emeritus, 349 McIntosh Ave., Orange Park, FL 32073
William Locke, Chairman, 255 Meerpoint Point Rd., Brunswick, ME 04011
Ron Lenhoff, Director/Secretary, 972 Wedgewood Dr., Independence KY 41051
Richard S. Webb, Dir/Treasurer, 219 Montoya Dr., Lady Lake FL 32159-8642
John G. Esposito, Editor/Director, 862 Central Ave., Southampton, PA 18966
Edward Lafontaine, Museum Director, 161 Jackson Dr., Frankfort, KY 40601
Fred Schuster, Dir/Historian, 2713Cabin Creek Rd., Edwardsville IL 62025
Robert Nelson, Online coordinator, / Director, #49 Woodland Drive, Tequesta, FL 3346
Harry Dunlap, Director, 5803 Eastshore Dr., Pensacola, FL 32505
Gary Gross Director/Storekeeper 4595S Robert Blake Ave., Inverness, FL 34452-7820.
Frank Balogh, Web-site/Director 1749 Burroughs Dr, Dayton OH 45406
The `Vagabond News' is the official publication of the Association, and is circulated quarterly in the Winter (January/March), Spring (April/June), Summer (July/September), and Fall (October/December), as a third class bulk-rate mail from Southampton, PA, Post Office (Permit #61). All costs of the publication are supported by voluntary contribution only. To ensure that materials of interest are promptly published, members should submit same prior to the publishing quarter to John G. Esposito, 862 Central Ave., Southampton, PA 18966. All inputs will be published in a timely manner.