Friday, June 5, 2009

LRAFB Reunion Weekend - May 29-June 1, 2009

Little Rock Air Force Base Reunion took place in Chicago. These were with people that we were stationed with 1965-1967. I am going to try to recap some of the highlights but I know it will not capture the whole picture of the events or situations. Also, it would take too many details to be able to do that.

  • Arrived on Thursday and went right to Jack & Mary's (Pudge's oldest brother & wife.) Had a great visit and of course, Mary put out a big spread of delicious food. Pudge enjoyed whipping his brother's butt 3 times in cribbage
  • Stayed at Quality Inn in Schiller Park. It proved to be a great place--very accommodating, convenient to air port and John's house, nice rooms, decent breakfast and very reasonable.
  • Fran & Jim came from Milwaukee, Diane & Ed & Pat & Frank came from Little Rock, Cappie from New York, Catrotti from Arizona and John from Chicago. Pudge made several trips to airport for pickup.
  • Lots of catching up to do which started immediately.
  • Memories were talked about and so much laughter that my face got numb & sore.
  • Went to a hot dog place where there was no seating. Not because it was full that is just the way the place is. So it was out to the parking lot where I opened the back of the van where some sat and I also spread a blanket on the parking lot and some sat there. Of course, we giggled and laughed while eating our world renowned Chicago hot dogs.
  • In the evening went to the Moose Lodge. John is a member there. He introduced all of us to many friends. This was (what I would describe) a very blue collar, folksy place. Everybody was so friendly and nice. John ordered pizza for everybody that night.
  • Back to sit around the pool and reminisce some more until the wee hours of the morning.
  • Saturday ventured into Chicago via the el. It turned out to be an adventure and it was so much fun to be with people who thought about it that way.
  • Trolley to Navy Pier where we had lunch and took pictures of the skyline.
  • Trolley to Magnificent Mile and we walked quite a bit of it. Diane and I checked out the new American Girl place. Others got ice cream and people watched.
  • Getting late and it was quite a hike back to get shuttle to el. I am used to walking but by this time some of the others were struggling with sore feet, knees, exhaustion, etc.
  • Went to a very nice restaurant for dinner.
  • Back to pool to talk some more. It just so happened that the flight pattern for O'Hare was right over us that night. It was a thrill to have the planes come right over us and they were low. That was fun.
  • Next morning it was breakfast and packing up. Slideshow in Jim & Fran's room from when we got together in Little Rock in 1973, Oh my gosh!! Was that funny!!
  • We said good bye to our friends about 11:30 am. We all agreed that the weekend could not have been any better.

Now as I read over this it doesn't sound like it was all that awesome but, people, I'm here to tell you it was one of the greatest weekends I have had. Like I said in the beginning there would be no way to capture the experiences with words and even if I did it probably would not be funny or amusing to you. It is like the saying goes, "you had to be there." It is one weekend I will never forget.


  1. I have some faint memories of when you lived in Little Rock. I know it was an important time in your life - both Kari and Bryan were born there, if I'm not mistaken. I guess I have more memories of when you came back to Minnesota to live while Pudge served in Thailand.

    It's wonderful that you have stayed in touch with your military friends. It seems like a strong community. I know it makes me feel better knowing that Rachel and the kids have friends helping them when Hans has to be away.

    I'm glad you had got to go to this reunion and happy that you had so much fun!

    One last thing: THANK YOU for coming to clean my carpets. I owe you - big time!

  2. Pat, I think you captured it just fine. I think we all have been to events like this and you want to share them with others. I know how hard it is for me when I get back from one of my Sweet Adeline events.

    Anyhow, thanks for sharing! Hope you are getting some of the things you wanted to get done, done!