Memo To: All The Flag Day Celebrants
Doc and Jane Protheroe have returned to Hilton Head after
several months in Florida over seeing repairs to their
condo. Hopefully they will be able to do some
recuperation in warm, sunny South Carolina. They say
hello and regards to all.
Doc sent along a newspaper clipping which told the story of
an Iwo Jima Marine’s
son who went to Iwo to search for the truth about a battle
the nation always has been intensely interested in.
His eye witness father was unwilling or unable to share any
anything about it before he died at the age of 49.
son (Michael) trained for the trip in the jungles of Saipan
for a week and wore Marine gear, and used his father’s
own map to retrace his steps on Iwo Jima. He returned
with a vial of black
and a piece of shrapnel from the beach. He also
returned with a new peace, one helped by talking to
survivors of the battle and their sons.
This article and the others that were published regarding
Iwo Jima were all outstanding reading of the Marine Corps
success in war time battle.
Again many thanks to all who took the time to send along the
various articles on Iwo over the last few weeks.
Another article described how the Marine Corps helicopter
aviation units have for years been assisting in emergency
search and rescue missions around Marine Corps Air Station
Beaufort where they were called
Now all that type of U.S. Marine Corps effort has been
cancelled due to high costs of maintaining the aircraft and
the responsibilities will be assumed by the U.S. Coast
George Bartlett sends his best to all. He reported
that he was flying to Cherry Point in a B-25 to the air show
in May and then plans to go to Oshkosh with them in July.
He received a great write up in the Sentry (May 8,2005)
where he described his first mission aboard a B-25 (PBJ)
which was a low level flight over one of the hot spots of
the South Pacific. Directly after the passing of the
target, a 44mm cut loose at them filling the plane next them
with bullets. He knew then that it was going to be a
Check out the link below and it will take you right to the
story from the SENTRY:
He had an opportunity to fly over Cherry Point air station
with two pilots and a group of five young Marines. He
said when it fires up, I feel the same excitement just like
I was 18.
As an attachment to this news letter is a Report of a B-25
Trip taken by George in October 2004 (Courtesy of MAG61
newsletter The Bugler).
Jim Garls says hello to all. With the great spring
weather he has started his Gentleman Jim The Farmer routine
with the planting of tomatoes. Hopefully the rain will
fall and assist the plants in their endeavor to grow.
All continues well in Pekin he reported. The warm
weather has allowed him to mow the grass and remain active
as an outdoorsman.
Bernard Simek called to say hello and send his regards to
all. Although he hasn’t
been an active 613'er he has over the years maintained
contact with several members at Christmas time. He had
been made aware of our webpage and wanted everyone to know
that his granddaughter who has a computer has been reviewing
all the material diligently. Hopefully he will be able
to meet her at home when she rearranges her schedule so that
she can show him the various pictures of the squadron
personnel, organizational sections/groups and Kwajalein
itself. He went onto say that since his discharge from
the Corps he has been busy operating a bar and also an air
conditioning and heating company. His son is also in
the business with him and they have kept busy for years.
Even though he is beyond retirement age he still finds the
time to stay busy keeping abreast of the many design
improvement changes to the various systems.
Carmine Nasta sends his best regards to all. He
continues to maintain a routine with the VA to help maintain
his health status. He has to walk with a cane which
hinders him from trying to run the 220 and also helps in
maintaining a careful pace while endeavoring to cross the
streets on Staten Island.
He has been in touch with Ike Stern in an effort to identify
squadron members in pictures from the various engineering
organizations within 613. Some names came to mind at
once and others just wouldn’t
materialize. Hopefully Ike will be able to continue
pull names out of his memory bank to complete the
identification of members.
He said that on his agenda are the calls to Walt Mathesen,
Walt Gravello and Gene Hansen. He reported that Gene
is still active with the Baltimore Orioles and that
Management has made his job a little easier by putting in
elevators to move the baseball fans up and down the many
flights to the seat aisles.
He reminisced about having the various Marine Football Teams
RON at Cherry Point while he was there during the Korean
War. By having the teams stay at Cherry Point they
were able to maintain a good practice schedule and get to
the next opponents base ready to go out and play rather than
figure out where they could get some rest.
While attending some of the games at other Marine Bases he
met two of his brothers who were also in the Marine Corps.
Also spoke to John Aymen who sends regards to all.
They are now settled in their new Condo but he has to watch
his physical activities. He has been undergoing
therapy for cancer which has slowed him down a bit so things
he has wanted to do have to wait until he gets some energy
under his belt.
George Comer reported in and said that he has been reviewing
his pictures of 613 ever since he read that we were looking
for a picture of Dave Snider and he located one during his
search and sent it onto me.
Received a letter from Frank Noland which also included a
picture of Dave Snider. He too had been searching
diligently and finally came across it. The picture has
been forwarded to Robert Yanacek for inclusion in the
website. Many thanks to George Comer and Frank Noland
from all the members for their research in this matter and
locating the picture of Dave.
George also sent along some information from the Marine
Corps Heritage Foundation relative to the sale of bricks for
the new building under construction at Quantico.
Bricks can be purchased at the cost of $300.00 per brick,
each brick can contain a total of three lines, each line is
20 characters (includes spaces) in length. If the squadron
wishes to purchase a brick let me know and come up with a
suggested verbiage such as:
The Ponape Mission
Members are requested to give consideration to such a
purchase and let me know what their thoughts are on the
Heard from Chuck Cannato who says very best regards, good
health and good luck to every body. They have been
very busy doing renovation work in their new duplex which
has really kept him busy. Hopefully things will be
brought up to their new design standards and then he will be
back sending and receiving e-mail.
John Gavin sends his best to all. He and Grace will be
celebrating their 55th anniversary real soon, so
regards to both from VMB 613. The weather has been
outstanding in his area but he says that they need rain to
keep the lawns looking like they should, nice and green.
In recalling events at Kwaj, he remembers being on duty at
the Communications Section when the message came in that we
would be leaving Kwaj for return to the United States.
It gave dates and other data that was required to get things
started for the evacuation from Kwaj.
In looking through his files at home he came across pictures
of Boris Karloff who came over to visit at the
He enjoyed the visit and said that Boris was one of the most
pleasant individuals he had ever met and talked to.
Boris autographed a one dollar bill and a five dollar bill
for him. Some where along the line he had misplaced
the five dollar bill but he still had the one dollar bill.
He sent it to the person who was instrumental in getting his
high school class pin back to him and she donated it to the
Kwajalein Museum for all to see.
In case members have forgotten John was swimming in the
lagoon one day and his class ring slipped off into the
lagoon water. He had really forgotten about it until
one day he received it in the mail. The person who
recovered the ring put a tracer on it back to his high
school and they were instrumental in his recovering the
Readers Digest also had a short article on this recovery
in one their issues.
He mentioned that when the government was dredging the
lagoon for improvements the ring was spotted in the coral
sand when it was being tipped into a barge. The person
really had good eyesight to spot the glitter and retrieve
On another occasion he met General Wainright who was at Kwaj
on his trip back to Hawaii or the states. He had the
opportunity to speak to him for about one hour. It was
a great meeting and he really enjoyed talking to the
Frank Robinson says hello and regards to all. He
manages to continue his athletic movements but doesn’t
want to try and do the 220. He’s
afraid his legs will freeze up if he does attempt it.
We were about to contact him to verify the names of a couple
of players on the VMB 613 Squadron Basketball team but a
member of the team looked at the picture and gave us the
Heard from Joe Yakawich who says hello to all. He
again endeavored to get a jump on spring by casting his line
into the river but only got a few nibbles, no strikes.
Hopefully things will change in the near future. He
continues to maintain his production schedule in making
models of air planes and with summer approaching, efforts
also had to be directed toward gardening activities on his
estate. Two of his grandchildren recently graduated
from college, Engineering degrees were received. His
son the Lt Colonel US Army continues to be on the move
within the U.S. and over seas. All efforts are towards
making the Army more efficient in their world wide
Heard from Ed Alling who says hello and regards to all.
He sent along some pictures of 613 units which I will
forward to our webmaster for inclusion on the website.
The picture that appeared in last months letter, sent by
Homer Anderson to Kim Haddix he also sent along with names
of the members that he recognized.
Homer Anderson reported that all is well with the Anderson
family in Santee. He sends regards to all our loyal
He reported on the picture that appeared in last months news
letter and sent along some information on it. The
picture was taken at Kwaj and the structure that can be
observed was the movie projection booth to the theater, plus
the backs of the back seats are also visible. The
personnel in the picture are the main crew that built the
theater. Here are the names:
Back Row: Ed Brais; E. Walker; George Gilman, and;
Front Row: Homer J. Anderson; Troy Bohannon; Lt Cunningham;
Bert Bader, and; Harold Riehle
There were two names he couldn’t
recall, the extreme right to Lt Cunningham, but some other
squadron members identified them for us. He went onto
explain that Lt Cunningham was the Project Engineer and the
mech-gunners whose names he passed onto us were the crew.
(Tsgt Bader and S/Sgt Riehle who were to right of Lt
Cunningham were the projectionists when the operation was
completed). The crew was very diligent and they
lumber from all over the island to build the booth and seats
but they still managed to finish the project in record time.
They were the main crew that built the theater. Lt
Cunningham wanted a picture of his loyal crew hence the
picture. Homer closed his letter with
this gives some answers to the
Many thanks to all other members who sent along their
recollections of members names.
John Peterson says hello and regards to all. He
reported that Jane is still having health problems and has
to visit with the MD’s
more often than she desires. They did have a short
spell when she felt great so they went on a trip to Zion and
Bryce and back through Salt Lake City to Deer Lodge, MT and
through Spokane. While in Montana they went through a
150 mile snow storm which really made the trip interesting.
He sent along a 1948 Marine Corps Recruiting Brochure which
hopefully I can enclose with this letter.
Frank Dudzik says hello and regards to all. He
endeavors to maintain Xmas contact with members but may
occasionally miss one. All remains well with him.
He continues to do construction work and has to remember to
be careful of how he steps off. Every now and then he
misses a step or steps on the wrong pile of material and
takes off flying. He has had three major mishaps doing
this which has really made him think twice at times before
He remembers the trip to Boca Chica particularly the change
in temperature. From Cherry Point to Florida hot
weather and flying in the aircraft the entire flight.
Vern Beggs and Anne send a hearty greetings to all.
They are both doing OK but are staying a little closer to
Gene Amber sends regards to all 613 members and said that it
was great to hear about Doc Scott still moving about at his
advanced age. They have a golf pro (95 years of age)
who comes from Scotland, brought in by Bobbie Jones, and
played his first Masters many years ago. He is still
endeavoring to teach Gene how to swing.
Robert T. Jones III was a close friend of Gene’s
who hosted him at Augusta some years ago.
Unfortunately he died at age 47.
Bob Litzau sends his best to all. In reviewing the VMB 613
squadron logos and reading of how to date no one knows who
designed and painted the unofficial logo that we feel is the
official logo it brought back memories to him as to whom might
have been the artist. Rather than mention his thoughts on
the matter at this time, I will do some more G2 work with
members and see if any thing comes up that solidifies his
thoughts on the matter.
Bob also sent along some information on the members who were in
the picture that was an enclosure to the last letter as an aid
Eric Sperger, a Vietnam-era Marine, has been doing research on
He sent along some information on a Washington DC PBJ Accident
which took place 4 April 1944 at 1520 hours. The aircraft
belonged to VMB 613, MAG 62. If anyone has any pertinent
data on this accident send it along to me. The BuNo was
35040 and two VMB 613 members were on board, the pilots were
LtCol Stewart W. Ralston and Col Byron Johnson. There was
also a LtCol Klinke on board, as well as, Pfc Alvin Klinke and
Corp Michael F. Pasachnik.
People that I have spoken to about this crash didn’t
think it was a VMB 613 aircraft. It would be interesting
to hear what members can recall about the incident and whether
they think it was a VMB 613 aircraft.