AFTER ACTION REPORT: BUFFALO REUNION
This years reunion was another great one. 927 people attended. Mike Forti
did an excellent job as the reunion chairman. A lot of people who were there
early also were a big help in keeping the registration and other activities
moving. We thank all of you and particularly you, Mike. We know that reunions
are a lot of work.
The weather in Western New York held out for us also. It was sunny and in the
70's for the entire time. It turned cloudy on Sunday. We were mostly on the
way home by then.
Wednesday and Thursday saw a record number of early arrival's. The bunker,
and the hotel bar were more crowded than in previous reunions. The golf
tournament moved from Thursday to Friday this year. This shift in golf times
allowed more people, who can't come early, to play.
The Chaplain should be proud. Beer consumption was down again this year.
Consumption has decreased over the past few years. Age must be gaining on
some of us. Or, maybe the Friends of Bill W., who met after the banquet, is
gaining in numbers.
Colonel H. Mike Davis, the Regimental Commander, gave an update briefing at
the 'Stable Your Mount Party' on Friday evening.
Also at the Stable Your Mount Party, Retired Brigadier General John Sherman
Crow presented a $6000.00 scholarship to Justin Stobbs for the Blackhorse
Association. Justin's Father, Richard is a Vietnam Veteran of HHT 1/11.
General Crow is the Scholarship Chairman of the Blackhorse Association, and
the 49th Colonel of the Regiment. As a means catching up, for not having
awarded scholarships for the past several years, Five - One Time Scholarships
worth $1500.00 each, were awarded to Seth Lucas, Kenneth Johnson, Brittany
Johnston, and Amanda Cozzens. These are all children of Blackhorse Veterans.
This year at total of $32,500 was raised for the 11ACVVC Scholarship Fund,
$4,500 at the Silent Auction on Friday evening in the Bunker at the reunion.
The remaining $27,500 was raised from calendar sales and the raffle. Expenses
to that fund were $9,765. That left $22,735 to award scholarships with.
During the Banquet The 11th Armored Cavalry's Veterans of Vietnam and
Cambodia presented 10 Scholarships worth $2,000 each, for a total of $20,000
awarded. John Sorich, the 11ACVVC Scholarship Chairman, had the honors of
presenting the scholarships to the following children;
Steven Boyd Steven Kendrick
Casey Flynn Sarah Munson
Brooke Gloege Steffany Jo Pilkington
Ryan Johnson Scott Pratschner
Brittany Johnston Megan Sinclair
We are confident that this money, and future scholarship money, will be put
to good use, helping our offspring get an education.
Lieutenant General Retired John Ballantyne, who was 2nd Squadron Commander in
Vietnam and the 46th Colonel of the Regiment in Germany, was guest speaker at
the Banquet. He spoke to us about current military preparedness, or lack of,
and did not paint a rosy picture. General Ballantyne attributed this
startling situation to the lack of funding for our army and over deployment
of the reduced forces that are still available after the recent military draw
down. His speech was very thought provoking.
I, for one, was not aware that there was reason to be concerned about the
condition of our military.
We were blessed to have a wonderful singer to grace us with her beautiful
voice this year. Marcia Skinner, wife of C Troop Vietnam Era Veteran, Ray
Skinner, sang for us at the Memorial Service. She led us in the National
Anthem, and sang a melody of songs, as a tribute to Vietnam Veterans, at the
banquet. We can only hope that she will return to future reunions to sing for
After the Banquet a dance was held in the lobby, just outside of the Banquet
Hall. More people than ever stayed to dance. Denny Pritchards son, Scott, was
the Deejay. He played just the right combination of music to keep the crowd
energized and dancing
At the Memorial Service, led by Chaplain Haworth, we again honored Our Fallen
Troopers. It was an emotional event, ending with 'Taps,' play by Adrian
Vaaler, our resident bugler. Also, as part of the ceremony, Mike Forti had
arranged a Cobra Gun Ship fly over. That's right, just like the ones that
flew ground support for us in 'The Nam'. The pilot was not allowed to fly
below 500 feet, but somehow seemed much closer. I can only guess about how
much coordination was involved in arranging that flight.
At the business meeting, Nashville was selected as the site for reunion XVII.
This reunion will be held in the summer of the year 2002. Steve Page, a
'66-'67 Vietnam Veteran of B Troop, will be the chairman. Let's all pitch in
and help him. It's a lot of work to put on a reunion.
If you haven't been to a reunion, you are missing out. Almost everyone who
comes to a reunion, returns in following years. Make plans now to attend one,
or all, of the events in 2001. It is the 100th Anniversary of Our Regiment. A
100th Anniversary Celebration is taking place at the Riviera Hotel/Casino in
Las Vegas - February 1 through 4, and the regular annual reunion in
Washington, DC at the Hyatt Regency On Capitol Hill, during the first weekend
in August. On Friday of the reunion, a number of activities will take place
at Fort Myer Virginia, across the Potomac River. Fort Myer was the birth
place of Blackhorse, on February 2, 1901.
Reunion Committee Chairman