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The first column of the New Year.  May the year be good to each of us.

 The Homecoming dinner party at Ginger Cove this year was hosted by John Fry with help from Bill Bass and others.  It was a fine party.  Again this year the Class of 1948 organized a Naval Academy homecoming blue and gold champagne reception and five-star dinner October 19 for over 100 guests, including 20 from the Class of 1948.  After the memorable homecoming celebrations in Dahlgren and Alumni Halls ended, Class Presidents Ed Robie ’43 and Randy King ’44, introduced these Friday night parties at Ginger Cove, for good drinks, good food, and fun  For the second year, the Class of 1948 has continued this joyful tradition.  Our guests were Academy alumni, wives, and widows, mainly from the Classes of 1943 through 1950, but included a few residents of Ginger Cove through the Class of 1961.  This year we were delighted to have Pauline and Carl Trost ’53 join us.  We invited five 1/c mid’n to be our guests and in brief remarks, Sixth Battalion Commander Angelo Biccetti reflected on what his Academy experience has meant to him and what he envisions for future service to the Navy and the nation.  For those who missed the party this year, we hope to see you next year.   It was indeed a fine party made even better by the’48 attendees who were:
          Carol Manganaro
          Bill Bass 20th Co.
          Goodie and Chuck Braley 13th Co.
          Fay Barnes
          Leila Holstein
          Betty and Dave Carruth 9th Co.
          Jean and Charlie Mertz 13th Co.
          Tony and John Fry 21st Co.
          Patty and Tony Duncan 4th Co.
          Amante and Roger Carlquist 19th Co.
          Marguerite and Charlie Heid 17th Co.
          Elizabeth and Bill Reed 18th Co.
Pictures are posted on the Class Home Page

Some discussion in previous columns concerning winemaking elicited the following from Bob Jortberg:

In the Spring of 1947, relieved of my role as editor of The Log, and otherwise not engaged, I decided to produce a small booklet to capture some of the experiences of the 7th Company- a 32 page booklet titled “Remember The Time”.  I had a lot of help preparing the text and selecting the photos and the drawings.  My father arranged the printing.  Every member of the 7th Co. got a copy.”

Scribe’s note:  Some one sent me a copy a long time ago.  It is excellent and here is my favorite section:

Come with us now to the Mardi Gras at midnight.  Since 1630 Mike Moran and I have been as busy as any pair of non-reg characters preparing for this feast.  We were the cause for many a raised eyebrow as we looted the local winery, doughnut dispensery, and butcher shop for cider, hamburger, rolls and cake.  My arms ached under the burden of sixteen magnums of apple squeezings, and Mike puffed along with five pounds of machined beef, rolls, spices, assorted confectionary and that congealed nectar of the bovine, cheese.
Happier than if we rated it, we strolled past the Commandant’s Home and into the fourth wing.  Being practical minded gents we transported ourselves to the second deck via that forbidden conveyance, the elevator.  Naturally, our destination was Moran’s Diner that which is indeed a den of iniquity and a haven for hungry night crawlers.  Our objective was to conceal our load on Mike’s windowsill where it is hidden from all plebes in the second wing, but open for inspection to all wandering D.O.’s and gold braid promenading on Sands Road.
Preparations for the orgy are not completed until 2300 for the operation demands the ultimate in caution and clandestining.  Various cooking appliances and utensils such as grills, pans, silverware, and the much stained but very serviceable red and white checked table cloth are gathered from their hiding places.  A post dinner trip to the mess hall pantry rewards us with mustard and catsup.  The electronic specialists who at the cost of some twenty five fuses understand perfectly the Bancroft three phase system, have wired the honky tonk for power.  The watch has been posted in Sunshine Alley so that we may be sure that the OD goes to bed.
Now comes the pitter patter of great big feet from every part of the third wing pedal extremities are directed toward 3239.  Inside the Cloth is spread, a blanket shrouds the window and all is still except for the continual roar which threatens to knock Tsiknas out of bed.  As the cider jug makes the rounds we speculate on the chances of the M.A.A. swiping the extension cord, our source of juice, again.
There is great handshaking and back slapping as old friends meet who had not seen one another since study hour.  Jack Fallon and Dan Connolly and ten cohorts are wedged in on the double sack.  Ray Black is shaping that stomach disrupting meat into hamburgers.  Jake is humming the Whiffinpoof Song as he stirs the grease in the pan.  Joe Hawvermale is splitting rolls and slicing cheese with the wrong side of the knife.  And Mike is unconcernedly pouring into Jack Bower’s slipper as he laughs at something that wasn’t funny.  Like the wise man that he is, Bill McClain is passing the cake around and incidently devouring it at a remarkable rate.  And in the corner, Bob Jortberg is wiping a knife on McDermut’s sheet.
Assembly line technique has been found effective in preparing the Salisbury steak a la Moran.  Mike holds the roll, Jake drops the cinder crisp meat, Ray lathers on mustard and catsup, Dave adds the cheese and relish, Mike then caps it and MacDonalds big pan looms out of nowhere to grab the monster.
Soon the room is full of lip smacking sounds and between bites the entire assembly renders off tune versions of popular college fight songs.  As the jug makes the rounds toasts are directed to the makers of the feast.  Boo Ferris and ‘Hot Lead’ Hemmes receive an ovation for supplying the necessary lumens.  Mike chuckles and wipes his hands on the tablecloth when we raise the glass to our lips to toast our host.  Then we drink to the OD with the fond hope that he won’t wake up, and we raise a silent glass to McDermutt who had to leave his bed and find refuge with Morpheus in a Youngster room.
The party is about finished when Joe and Mike finally break down and give us all ten versions of ‘Mr. Morton’, so with a resounding chorus of ‘Leave the Dishes in The Sink---Mike’ we take our leave and hope that Joe and Mac won’t mind too much having to clean up the room in the morning.  When we climb into bed at one-thirty a rapid mental calculation tells us that we have at least another hour’s tossing and turning before we can pacify those little animals growling around in our stomachs.  So, till we meet in the morning, good night, you fugitives from a frat house.

Scribe’s note--Well done, Bob.  I hope everyone likes it as much as I do.  As a side note, all of these rogues are from the 6th, 7th and 8th companies and the great majority of them are no longer with us.
At our luncheon on the 9th of this month Roger Carlquist told us he has 79 people who have paid their deposit of $100 per person for the reunion.  He also has 35 others who have indicated they are coming, some even have their hotel reservations, but have not sent in the deposit.  He said he was going to contact each of them, individual or couple.  That would total to 114 folks so far planning to attend.  That’s not too bad for a 65th but I hope more of you will get on board.  You should be reading this in Jan. so you still have five months to snuggle up.  Get with it!
Since the last column we have learned of the loss of 5 more Classmates and three wives.
          1st Co.     Berggren, J.J.A.           11/27/11 
          8th Co.    Black, R.L.                  10/20/12
          17th Co.  Dick, D.P.                    10/8/12
          13th Co.  Green, H.T.                  11/9/12   *
          5th Co.    Montalvo, Jorge            2/16/12   * #
          Berggren, Carol                           3/2011
          Curl, Elizabeth                            11/12/12
          McKechnie, Virginia                    11/17/12

*see the 50 Year Book for biography
# Though the SS deceased files seem to fit I’m still looking for verification of Jorge’s passing.  Can anyone help?
The Class sends its condolences and prayers to the families.

Also at the luncheon on the 9th Charlie Heid reported that our $2 million donation to the IT curriculum is now at $1,979,599.  As you know we gift $1000 to the leading IT mid’n each year and the salary of a visiting professor is also paid from that money.  All things considered I would say the pot is holding its own pretty well.
The  fund, which I call the reunion fund, is growing by the addition of the deposits for the 65th and as of Oct. stands at $24,331.76 according to Phil Rogers.  Our new Treasurer, Charlie Mertz, reported that the Memorial/Flower fund is currently at $9,129.99 and growing with the donations from the Classmates and widows.
An email from Nick Castruccio in Oct. relates his daughter’s comments about flying with him on his last flight under his current medical certificate (which he does not plan to renew, he is now 86 1/2).  Nick says, “ for the record I may be the oldest in our class to still be flying.  I am a member of the UFO’s (United Flying Octogenarians)”.
Harry Bellflower then sent me the following:

“Nick and I went through basic at Whiting Field together.  We were both newly weds and lived in the same apartment complex on Pensacola Bay with Bob “Tony” Duncan, Paul Bryant, Dave Beadling and Dick “Esky” Clithero.  Bill Rogers came later and was killed in an accident while still at Whiting.  I am possibly leaving out someone but that’s my memory or lack of it.  Anyway, we ran two car pools everyday back and forth and many of my memories are of our trips back home after a day at Whiting Field.  Unfortunately, of the aforementioned, only Tony and I remain.

I recall that when Nick graduated, he and his father put Ann and Mrs. Castruccio on the train in DC and then drove like crazy to Chicago to transfer them to the Los Angeles bound train.  He and his Dad then drove like a couple of mad men to L.A. where they met them at the train station to take them home.  Quite a trip.  I never saw Nick again but have kept abreast of some of his flying adventures with envy.
PS  I continued to fly for a number of year after retiring.  Owned a museum quality 1946 Cessna 140 and built a Pitts Special S-1-S.  Flew son-in-law’s Piper clipped wing Cub a bit after that.  Finally packed it in and took up other sports and hobbies.”

I find that putting a column together usually leaves me pondering my memories, which I enjoy; however, sometimes the side effects are bit different than memories.  The first part of this column left me with my brain stuck on a song which I’m certain all of you remember—“Leave the dishes in the sink Ma
                             Leave the dishes in the sink
                             Each dirty plate will have to wait,
                             Tonight we’re gona celebrate
                             Leave the dishes in the sink.”

Now, maybe I can get it out of my head.