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RECAP OF MISTY REUNION
3-7 October 2007, DESTIN, FL


***2007 Reunion had largest turnout in years, sez Jack Doub!!***

From a positively dazzling F-22 demo to the incredible hospitality of the 43rd Fighter Squadron, the folks at Tyndall put on quite a show for our gathering.   Max Moga and his incredible flying machine stunned the crowd with a series of impossible maneuvers! Aeroplanes simply cannot do the things he did.Click for a movie of the F-22, courtesy of MilitaryImages and YouTube
First off, he took off in less than 1,000 feet!   After several high speed passes, in which he had to pull the power to idle to stay below the mach, he racked it up into a 9.5 'G' 360... which was much, much tighter than any F-16 I've seen?  Mostly, though, he was showing us the Raptor's thrust vectoring and incredible low speed maneuvering capability.   For example, a zero airspeed loop that was totally thrust vectoring, not back pressure.

Max actually showed us three new airshow maneuvers he'd just gotten approved by the ACC Commander.  (He has to audition each new maneuver and travels with a four-man team from ACC... including a safety observer, a fully rated F-22 driver, who watches him like a hawk!)

You had to see it to believe it and when Max joined us at the 43rd Sqdn for happy hour he was drenched in sweat!  He sez the show is quite exhausting... he has the Raptor at max capability for the entire 30-minute presentation.

A word about the sierra-hotel 43rd Fighter Squadron... the best hosts ever!!   We had a nice seafood lunch at the club, followed by an F-22 video presentation by Capt. Dan "Magic" Lee... our POC for the Tyndall visit.  (That's "Point-of-Contact" for Risinger!)   From there we were taken in DV buses to the flightline where we had an actual F-22 to crawl all over!  (Ed: that's "Distinguished Visitor")
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After the show we were bussed to the sqdn for a great happy hour.  The booze flowed & the b.s. was at least hip deep.  Our hosts even provided sandwiches and snacks to keep we olde farts from passing out early.

Click for a larger picture I think everyone really enjoyed getting to chat with the striking young group of jocks; as Bill Douglass remarked, "They must get all these guys from Central casting?"   (They were all handsome devils... 6'2, 210, whippet thin, and truly nice guys.) Click for a larger picture
It was with some regret when we started pulling out around 18:00... I think we all hated to leave.  A great day, courtesy of our 43rd Hornet buddies.

Among the other reunion events; the dinner cruise was well-received... and even the golf tournament offered a bit of levity when the ladies took the two big trophies!   Penny Mack was the low shooter and Rose Holden sank a 42-footer for longest putt!   I believe Frank Kimball hit the longest drive, but I never heard the distance?
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Saturday, as we went thru the biz meeting, some one nudged me and pointed outside... where, to my horror, the blackest cloud I'd ever seen was bearing down on us from out in the Gulf!  And the seafood buffet was due to kickoff in two hours!!   The o-u-t-d-o-o-r seafood buffet?

I believe it was Echenberg who cheered me up by commenting, "Douber, I hope you have a 'plan B?'  I did not, but the hotel convention manager did... and they quickly moved everything indoors.  We launched only 30 minutes behind schedule, which only gave us a longer happy hour.

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The food was great... better, even, than '05.  I had asked if the round of beef could be more medium rare than well-done, as seems to usually be the case?   It was superb... rare in the middle and well done on the edges... whatever you wanted.
As usual, the gorgeous hospitality suite at the Holiday Inn was the star of the show and there was constant activity... from 09:00 'til 02:30 some nights.  I know I staggered out of there about 02:00 one morning with PJ, Brian Williams, Ray Bevivino, and Joe Caruso's guest... CV... still hanging onto the bar! Click for a larger picture
This year we planned a little more free time and I heard many favorable comments re enjoying the beach activities and the many, many great restaurants along the Gulf.

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Several folks were missed... Dick Rutan, for one, was unable to attend due to biz demands.   Dave Skilling had to cnx late due to family health issues.   Ron Standerfer was in Warsaw purchasing a new condo, so I still haven't met his lovely wife, Maja?  (On the other hand, Dean Echenberg brought the lovely Shirley Thornton again, so I was a happy camper.)   Robby Robinson was absent... first time I can remember him missing a reunion?   Dave Jenny was MIA... again... as was Paul Tackaberry?   George Lapham was also MIA.   And Lynn Farnsworth... an Atlantan, no less, whom I watched run 4th in the Sports Class at the Reno Air Races in September.   Despite all that, we usually contract for about 75 servings during our "banquet"... this year we topped 110... and I'm not sure we counted the four F-22 drivers that showed up for the festivities Saturday evening!
We had a few first timers... or at least, I'd hadn't seen them in years... Andy Christensen & his wife Suzanne... Jerry Marks was there with Sylvia... Gregg Parker trekked all the way from Savannah... Gary Nophsker and his wife Kim drove in from Texas... and, finally, we got to see the lovely Janie Cunningham again, when I loaned enough $$$ to supplement Dick's Social Security check for the long flight from Napa... he even rented an air-conditioned car this trip? Click for a larger picture
Click for a larger picture It was great to have a four-star bartender for a change!  Ron and Miss Jane Fogleman made the trip from Colorado... always a pleasure!  (I think we all admire Ron!)
We were well-stocked with general officers, with Shep and Rosie also holding forth!
Finally, a word about the Jolly Greens. I believe this was the work of Charlie Neel... and if I'm wrong here, please straighten me out!  Four Jolly pilots who had rescued Mistys attended and were a joy!  It was heart warming to see those guys matched up again after all these years!  At the banquet we had them all come up, with the Mistys they'd picked up, and the crowd gave them a standing "O!"  Not a dry eye in the place!!  A nice moment.Click for a larger picture
We also gave them their registration money back, telling them, "Jolly Green crews can't buy a drink in the Misty bar!"  And, oh by the way, they all, to a man, gave us the money back for the Misty Fund.  Classy.

A few muchly deserved kudoes are in order... Mick Greene for stocking the bar and a great job of planning: one bottle of Tequila left on Sunday morning... PJ White ran the golf tournament and a great, great time was had by all, particularly the trophy-winning ladies... Dan Brown stocked the Tyndall bus and we didn't run out of anything... Charlie Summers again updated the group on the NVN truckers union & a hilarious Dave Letterman shot at "10 Ways To Tell If A Misty Is Growing Old"... and, personally, I would like to thank Bill Douglass for his always entertaining work as the program M.C., he does a classy job!

For the future, there is a FAC memorial deal in Colo. Spgs next year... more on that later.   Tony McPeak would also like to have an off-year "practice" reunion in Oregon next year.  While the consensus was the Colorado Springs Misty group could handle the memorial ceremony at the Springs, we'll probably have a pretty good turnout for the Oregon get-together because there is a Hun being dedicated at the Evergreen Museum, McMinnville, Ore., about 20-30 miles southwest of Portland, and the Mistys have been invited to attend.  Tony is putting it together, and we should have details soon.  The museum website is at http://www.sprucegoose.org/

***Of course, the 2009 Misty Reunion will again be held at the Holiday Inn, Destin, Fla., probably in October.   ( How we'll ever beat the F-22 demo is beyond me, but we're talking to NASA re a Space Shuttle landing on Runway 23 at Eglin... just for us?)

It was a great time and we thank everyone for attending... it's what makes the Misty Reunions the greatest!

Cheers...

Jack Doub
All prevarications and extensions of the truth were by Jack Doub, Misty 145.
Webpage design and pictures on this page were by Gary Nophsker, Misty 128.
Click here for more pictures:
25 more by Gary Nophsker
16 by Mike Hinkle, Misty 153
21 by/of Joe Caruso, Misty S 1
42 by Don Shepperd, Misty 34


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Last update:  24 January 2015

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