We all had a wonderful time in Houston last week at our Blackhorse Family Reunion.
Glenn Allardyce and the superb team from the Houston/Southeast Texas Chapter absolutely out did themselves to make us all feel at home. I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge those who worked so long and hard to give us this reunion. Our profound thanks to Glenn and Gabby Allerdyce, Don and Cinda McFetridge, Bob and Sandy Donaghe, Gene and Mitsi Johnson, Steve, Monica and Eric Lungstrum, Dennis Kelly and Amy Carr, Bob and Lois Hurt, Joe and Suzanne Sutton, David and Susan Gallman, Karen and Ken Waldman, Brenner and Lenora Sayers, James and Patsy Bennett, Sanh and Judy Nguyen, David and Sharon Wright, Charley and Donna Watkins, Jane Herring and Larry Haworth. THANKS ALL FOR THIS GREAT REUNION !!!!
And special thanks to Mo Baker, Don Johnson, Crystal Kruger, George Desario, Dick and Donna Leibert, Jim Bob Rollins and our CPA, Kathy Ploch for their outstanding support.
We were so blessed to have our own Hal Fritz deliver our keynote address on Saturday evening. What an inspiring message Hal, thank you. And, our thanks to Julian Burns, John Poindexter, Paul Laughlin (63rd Colonel) for their superb presentations. Finally, we profoundly thank Houston’s own Bob Boudreaux for his great work as our banquet MC.
The member traveling farthest was Gunner Wagner—coming in all the way from the Philippines—great seeing you Gunner. Two of our Vietnam era members surprised us on Thursday morning at our opening ceremonies at Blackhorse Golf Club. David Barnes from north Texas and Horace Eaton from Oklahoma mounted two beautiful black horses to escort our Color Guard. They drove hundreds of miles pulling a horsebox so that we could have our black horses to kick off our reunion. 1SG(Ret) Steve Rochon and the Houston Lamar High School Color Guard were superb at the opening ceremony. Our own Blackhorse Regiment Cavalry Motorcycles (BHRCM) rode in from all over the country—-some riding almost 2,000 miles to be able to be with their Blackhorse Family. BHRCM, we salute you for all you do for our troopers and their families at Fort Irwin.
Now for a brief overview of our annual business meeting: I was pleased to be able to report the State of the Association as GOOD. Thanks to the outstanding Officers and Directors, we closed 2009 in the best condition in our history. The business model you approved in 2008 is a work in progress but I firmly believe it is the proper model for our non-profit, charitable organization. Our financial condition continues to improvein both the scholarship and operating areas. We will continue to focus on our attempt to get broader support in funding the operating account while continuing to keep the pulse of the scholarship account steady. Remember, the 1901 Club mail outs each January is key to our success in maintaining our newsletter, website, e-news, statutory filings and soldier support programs to our active Regiment. Our goal is 1,900 members.
Based on your guidance at the 2009 Fulda Reunion to find more ways to support the active Regiment, we have instituted a program to provide our signature coach’s jackets to our active Trooper/NCO of the quarter and year. We were also able this year to provide 760 pairs of combat spurs for our 1-221 Cavalry warriors returning from deployment to Afghanistan. All these initiatives require operating funds—-scholarship funds are restricted for that use only. Our scholarship fund is funded mostly by the 35 members of the Allons Club. Check out our website for Allons Club information—-we welcome more members—-our goal is 100 members.
We were able to award 10 new scholarships to children of our Regiment. Congratulations to Aaron Cook, Amber Burns, Raegan Maxwell, Brandon Paton, Joseph Stromberg, Kristina Graham, Denisha Teague, Matt McKelvey, Colby Dillard and Heather Martinez.
Watch for changes in our scholarship program—next year we will add scholarship offerings for those who wish to pursue educational and occupational opportunities through community colleges and technical/trade schools.
FINALLY, WATCH FOR INFORMATION ON OUR 2011 LAS VEGAS REUNION:
Thanks to all for sharing your time, talent and treasure with the Blackhorse Association.
Allons! Blackhorse Forever!
John Sherman Crow
Oldest Trooper of the Regiment
We believe we have located the oldest Trooper of our Regiment. Andy Andreason joined the Regiment in 1934 as a horse cavalryman (center of photo below).
Andy Andreason, the oldest Trooper
Andy remained with the Regiment as they tested and transitioned to armored cars in late 1936 and 1937. Andy was a crew member on the first armored car in our Regiment.
Andy securing 11thCav, HQ 1
Andy lives in Redding, California and was introduced to Ken Jankel several months ago and Ken was able to take Andy for a three day visit to the Regiment. Colonel Paul Laughlin and CSM Martin Wilcox provided Andy with a special VIP visit and CG, Fort Irwin, BG Abrams included Andy in a special salute to veterans.
I called Andy on Memorial Day to wish him well at a Physical Rehab Center in Redding where he is recovering from an accident. He wanted to join us at the Houston Reunion but was not quite able to make it. He fully intends to join in the Blackhorse Family Reunion in Las Vegas June 1 – 5, 2011.
If any of you would like to talk with Andy feel free to call him at late morning or mid-afternoon California time at (530) 242-4771.
So happy to have you back home Andy. ALLONS !