THE RISING IN PHOENIX, ARIZONA

Went to one of the many REDHORSE or PRIME BEEF reunions please share your experience with others who may not have been able to make it.

THE RISING IN PHOENIX, ARIZONA

Postby Wayland Davis on Sat Apr 30, 2011 12:17 am

THE RISING IN PHOENIX, ARIZONA
This year’s westward journey was to Phoenix, Arizona, a trip since taken in April 15-17, had this time been a longer one for some of us driving to the reunion but we all are on a fellowship mission of duty to seek out the not forgotten Phu Cat Airbase class of 1965-66 Vietnam. Once more it begun a weekenders’ sequel for it was just the right beginning to an annual occasion that had also crossed paths “originally”, and twelve other shared reunion times before. With many of the same good people in attendance that once a year has managed to capture and kept the same essences of their military service brotherhood, and at this time being at a Glendale location in Phoenix, Arizona.

The allure of the annual 819th RED HORSE SQUADRON REUNION 2011 is a continuation of many others; likewise, which was held in the past. They showed up just as eager to greet others arriving after them with the same energy and stories told that welcomes back both the older friends, and for the first time newer ones also being in attendance. It is delightful to greet someone just pulling up to the motel veranda after driving some eighteen hundred miles. Stopping now for the latest time of their travels and too having someone with a smiling face approach the vehicle with an outreached friendly hand to welcome them back altogether once more. The fatigue of the long travels melts away as the tired body is felt on the longest journey momentarily is forgotten, and both the new arrival and the greeter are both young again.

These yearly re-acquaintances are something to witness for the lasting camaraderie shown are moving events for both ages and circumstances have taken a toll on the body and all the necessary movements are carefully anticipated. The exit from the vehicle is slowly happening for the same warrior of yesterday is fighting back the time ago long passed and medical conditions that affect us all. The mind is still sharp and the tightly hugs all suggest that none of the other stuff matters that much as normally one sees the younger man that he used to be and still remembers the bonding of relationships. They had forged while being in-country in battle. Self determination and love for each other are the main reasons for being at this reunion and with the other attendees in the previous years.

The first night is wondrously new and for catching up with the many days that have passed by since talking together. The noise in the room is vociferous with many different discussions taken place at the very same time. A lot of catching up to do and everyone is so eager to hear all that there is being discussed. The pictures and photographs albums are spread out on the coffee table, and a group sits together and tries as hard to recall the event, of whom, and where was it taken. Sometimes they even get it right and then there are differing opinions about some of the details. Forty six years having passed sometimes others can remember it differently. It sometimes goes unsettled and in friendly ways they move on to more discussion. It’s a family reunion and as family just by sitting together and remembering is enough. Reunion details are shared with the attendees for the next day’s events and the host is there to make it easier to accumulate for group activities but also is individual things to do and see. It has always been the highlight for learning about the area and to wind down from the travels of getting there.

The host will have already set things up and is available to answer any and all questions, and this will allow for the flow of any scheduled events to happen on time. The main occasion of the second night at the club banquet was held at Luke Air Force Base, Arizona it was elaborate, well organized, decorated, and supported by our host. The tables were arraigned with choice of seating as old friends could sit across from each other and gentlemanly continue on with the days topic and dialog. The food was tasty and well displayed on the serving line and the service was the best. The ornate center pieces on the tables were door prizes to be given away… far too few for all that wanted one of those. It was a wooden carousel made of miniature RED HORSES mounted to a revolving base. The luck of the draw was the deciding factor for carrying one of those items back home but a few were redistributed to a deserving sister or best friends. They were unique and professionally crafted as those that did not win one are the envy of those six people that got to carry one back home.

The days were too few but the fellowships once more are renewed and new memories were gained. There existed a calmness while leaving as the participate attending this reunion will have to wait for next year to come. In time lasting our individual thoughts will be on the courage, service, sacrifice, and friendships they forged while in training and service in Vietnam as the tasks were great, the duty made to seem effortless, and the year of combat well spent in service to our Nation. The Original 819th RED HORSE SQUADRON had proved that USAF “combat engineers” had what it took and then some. May the history be always remembered? Praises for all those that carried us forward on the long journey not yet finished as the troops still remain on the battlefield. GOD Bless them all! Many thanks to this year’s Hosting by: Gene & Kathy Newlin—Mark & Kathy Guidry (2011).
Wayland B. Davis, Ret. USAF RED HORSE Attendee
Wayland Davis
 
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Location: Freeport, FL

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