Pensacola 1998


The ‘98 reunion was held October 28 to November 1 in Pensacola. The weather couldn’t have been nicer, no rain, sunny skies and temperatures in the 80’s. The Holiday Inn on North Davis Highway was headquarters, with the nearby Hampton Inn used as a spillover facility. We enjoyed a huge ready room (actually it was half of the ballroom that was used for the reception on Friday night). Tables were laid out with archival memorabilia and many members browsed through old, but not forgotten, cruise books, flight schedules, photograph albums and official papers. Side trips for sight seeing and other interests were enjoyed by many of the participants; a full bus load of Pelicans went to Boomtown Casino in Biloxi and everyone had fun, but no one returned with a megabucks jackpot©®

The conversation noise level at the reception Friday evening was testimony to the many animated sea stories that were being told and retold. The Commanding Officer of VP-45, CDR Gregory A. Miller, USN, gave an excellent Command Presentation, informing those present about the various missions being prosecuted by the squadron in far flung places around the world. AOCM Mike Ross, the Command Master Chief, gave a humorous inside look at the accomplishments of the squadron, with an emphasis on the “people” programs that are part of squadron life.

Saturday morning the business meeting convened with about 50 Pelicans attending. President Hank Gorman presided. Nominations and voting were unanimous for the slate of Officers, and the members voted to contribute $5000.00 to the Naval Aviation Museum Foundation, $5000.00 to the U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation and $250 to the US Navy Room at the Bermuda Naval Museum. Bylaw changes were made to discontinue the scholarship to the Squadron and to add the duty of planning the reunion to the duties assigned to the Vice President. The members also voted to have the next reunion in Jacksonville, Florida (YR 2000).    

The reception and banquet Saturday evening at the Naval Aviation Museum was a real winner. Nothing can compare to the backdrop of airplanes and displays the museum provided for our banquet. Banquet speaker was Admiral Fetterman, the CEO of the museum foundation, and an inspirational presentation by AOCM Ross added dignity to the proceedings. A most memorable event was enjoyed by all.

The farewell brunch back at the Holiday Inn was a send-off for many happy Pelicans. We are all looking forward to the year 2000 reunion in Jacksonville and want to urge all members to seriously consider, and make plans to attend, the JAX reunion in 2000!!

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