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A few day ago I received an email from Gordo Ehrman 17th Co. saying he keeps reading in Shipmate that I’m sending emails to the Class and he has never received any.  He asked that I add him to the distribution list.  I checked and he has been on the list since I created it.  His mail has never been returned so it must have reached his computer.  Warren Graham 2nd Co. had this same problem a while back and his son thought he knew the answer.  He checked “junk/spam” and there were my most recent emails.  He marked them “this is not junk/spam” and Warren has not had the problem since.  Apparently the system for some people has determined that anything from Slipstk is spam.  In fact early on I had a long fight with AOL to get them to let me send lengthy emails.  They finally gave me a “white paper dispensation” which I continue to work under.  Of course early on my emails to the Class were much longer.  I am now down to 190 working addresses, quite-a-few of which are widows, and my records show that there are 256 Classmates still on this side of the grass.  At the other end of this spectrum I have addresses, which don’t work for various reasons, i.e. they’ve been changed and I have not received a correction; some people have asked to be dropped from the distribution; etc.  Oddly enough I just this minute received an email from Al Conord 20th Co. saying he hadn’t received anything from me for some time and asking why.  He said he had been having computer problems and wondered if that had anything to do with it.  I checked and his problems caused his mail to bounce for so long I removed him from the list.  He is now back on it.   I’m having the same problem with Paul Ruehrmund 13th Co. mail bouncing so Paul, when you read this, please send me an email so I can get you back into the distribution.

I send Class emails several times a week covering obits, Class information and “stuff” so if you aren’t receiving anything from me, and want to, check “junk/spam” then make certain I have your correct email address.  I would love to add some addresses to the list.

In my last column I stated that Rhona and Chuck Gorder 12th Co. are probably our “travelingest” folks.  What I didn’t know was that as I was writing they were in England attending a wedding.  Until someone convinces me otherwise I think they have the travel award nailed.

There are some others who are in the running and I will mention them but let’s go back a few years and review something I have previously written about.  I was reminded of this in a clipping, which Bob McClinton 11th Co. sent me:

                                     Fund raising on a bike
I had the pleasure in 1993 of bicycling with a group from Los Angeles to Boston, 3,446 miles.  We rode for 43 days, with six rest days along the way.  A great pleasure from start to finish.  I raised funds for the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle by doing this ride, celebrating my 68th birthday along the way.  In 1991, I also raised funds for the Fred Hutch when I bicycled with a group from Canada to Mexico, 1,696 miles.  Through these and other rides in the 1990s, I raised a total of $51,000 for the Fred Hutch, the American Lung Association of Washington and others while bicycling more than 24,000 miles, which included my local training, rides.

Scribe’s note:  Bob has laid the foundation for excellent health and a long life. He is keeping it in play with his current sailing.  Many of us, especially me, would do well to follow his example but if you choose to bicycle at our current age you might consider a stationary bike.

Back to travel,  Walt Spangenberg  2nd Co. writes, Drove to Vancouver, then took the Rocky Mountain “Mountaineer” train to Jasper via Kamloops (a two-day trip) and return.  A pleasant dome-car train ride through beautiful rocky Mountain scenery!

Angus McDonald 7th Co. says,

“I have just returned from a fabulous tour of the Southwest including two days near the Grand Canyon.  It was sponsored by Bobbi Collins in the Alumni Office and Orbridge and featured several amenities.  Three other USNA Alumni were on the tour including retired Vice Admiral Crowder ’74.  There were people from Fordham, Johns Hopkins and Navy.  I have recently finished Darkside. It is the lengthy description of the tunnels under the Yard.  Purely fiction?“

Helen Orr and husband, Ralph Splittberger, (wed-2000 and living in Scottsdale) drove to Government Camp at the foot of Mt. Hood, OR in early May to spend six weeks at her daughter and family’s ski condo near to their home in Portland.  Both Helen and Wylie’s twin grandsons had major parts in their 8th grade play, “Annie Jr.” in May and will be graduating from 8th grade on June 10th.  The twins, Nicholas and Lucas Wylie, will be entering Jesuit High School in the fall.  A week after returning to Arizona, Helen plans to have a complete knee replacement at Mayo Clinic Hospital, Arizona.  Hallelujah!

J.B. Ferris 6th Co. says-Eileen and I happily moved from North Carolina to a Senior Independent Living residence in Boynton Beach, FL back in January. Number 1 son and his wife also recently moved to this area.  Their son and daughter had settled here even earlier, so we finally had a significant family nucleus to join.  Also, less than a mile away from here lives classmate Walter “Bud” Kraus who I have been trying to catch up with ever since graduation.

From Tom Galbraith 21st Co., Mary Ann and I have sold our Bahamas condo and house in Vero Beach and moved to a neat retirement community on Amelia Island, FL, just north of Jacksonville.  It’s called Osprey Village and is associated with the Omni Amelia Island Plantation.  The only other military retiree here at Osprey is a non-USNA RADM named Frank Gallo, a VP pilot.  Our new address is 10 Osprey Court, Amelia Island, FL, 32034.  Phone is (904- 430-4444.  Our health is holding up pretty well—MA still takes her 4-mile walk every morning, and I do a slower 2 miler in the late afternoon.  Several golf courses nearby.  MA breaks 100 but I do well to shoot my weight.

A note from Tom Hayward 21st Co.:

Soon after Peggy and I moved to Seattle in late 1990s, we became aware of a remarkable effort by the family of a helicopter pilot killed in Vietnam.  Seeking to heal the wounds of war, they initiated a project dedicated to removing unexploded ordnance-which I and many of our classmates no doubt contributed to-clearing land and planting trees.  The project is called Peace Trees Vietnam.  Detailed information of their efforts can be had for those interested at   Over 900 acres of land and 85,000 plus bombs, land mines, mortars and the like have been cleared and planted with trees, as well as training hundreds of Vietnamese how to discover UXO safely and clear the fields.  This year is their 20th anniversary, celebrated warmly by Vietnamese villagers, government leaders and many dismembered children and farmers.   Over the years, Peggy and I, and our family, have participated in construction of homes, schools and libraries in Quang Tri Province, where the preponderance of UXO is still to be found and disarmed.  This past April, our family foundation celebrated the ribbon cutting of a kindergarten, wholly contributed by our little gang.  It was a great day of joy in every respect.  Just plain felt good.  Thought you and our shipmates might be interested in learning more.

        Since the last column we have lost 3 friends:
        Grunig, Joseph (non grad)       5/2/15

        Elsie Allshouse, wife of Tom Allshouse (deceased) 23rd. Co.                5/21/15
An excerpt from Elsie’s absolutely outstanding 3-page obit---Elsie was valedictorian of her Atlantic, NC high school.  She then attended Campbell College for as long as she could afford the tuition.  She focused on business studies and landed a job in the Fuel and Disbursing office at the Cherry Point Marine Corps Air Station in Havelock, NC.  One routine day at the office a handsome young ENS Thomas J. Allshouse, SC, USN strode in with orders as the new disbursing and fuel control officer at Cherry Point.  Elsie described her flashbulb memory of that day as a fairytale case of love at first sight.  She truly and instinctively felt that TJ was meant for her.  She saw shy, young Tom as swimming naively in a pool of rapacious, unattached southern belles.  She invited him to a movie.  So, it seems that they started with coming attractions but in reality the attraction was already galvanized and through 51 years, a stellar Naval career and three children, they were inseparable.  The children were two girls, one a Geologist, the other a Cardiac Rehabilitation Nurse.  The boy is a pediatric surgeon.  Elsie wrote poetry, example to her husband:
        If I could say what I would do,
        I’d say I’ll spend my life with you.
        If I could say how I’d live my life,
        I’d say I’d live it as a Navy wife.
Lois Borchert, wife of Bill Borchert 8th Co.   6/23/15   Lois and Bill were married 66 ½ years and raised four children two boys and two girls.

Scribe’s note:  read Bill’s auto bio in the 50 year book if you have it.

Cliff Morgan 18th Co. commented upon reading Grunig’s demise that though the news was sad, I was pleased to learn of his life after he left the academy.  Joe, Bill Bass, a fellow named Wendell Burley and I were attending radio tech school in Chicago when we learned that we had been selected for NAPS.  When our course there was completed there was no reason to send us to the next stage of RT training and there were a few weeks before we were due at Bainbridge so we were in limbo there in Chicago, except for Bill Bass.  Bill was offered leave if he would escort the OinC’s daughter to her new school near Bill’s hometown in Texas, which, of course, he took.  Joe, Wendell and I weren’t totally unhappy as we had met three attractive and lively young ladies one weekend in Lincoln Park and we continued to see a lot of them during the rest of our time there.  At NAPS, Joe, Wendell  and I ended up in the same platoon, probably because we checked in together, and continued a close association there.  Wendell, who had a little trouble with the academics, ran into trouble with physical problems and didn’t make it to the Academy.

Graduation note from Tom O’Connor 19th Co.:  Alice and I proudly report TWO of our grandsons graduated from USNA on 22 May ’15.

Peyton Walsh is now a Marine Corps officer.  He amassed a number of Academy records as Captain of Navy’s varsity wrestling team with three NCAA national championship tournament appearances and a number of other Academy wrestling program records.  In his first class year he was selected as Captain of all the other Captains of Navy’s varsity athletic programs.

Bradley Elder is now an Ensign and on his way in the Navy Seals program reporting to Coronado, CA to begin the rigorous training there.  So far he has met all the preliminary qualifications taken at Annapolis.

Tom and Alice are proud to have these 3rd generation O’Connors graduating from USNA.  They join two second generation O’Connors, Thomas ’75, submariner for 26 years including skipper of USS SCRANTON, and Lawrence ’83 an NFO flying EA6B out of Whidbey Island deploying aboard USS RANGER.