REUNION April 20-24, 2008 in Las Vegas

@ the Gold Coast Hotel and Casino

Proposed Schedule

Sunday April 20 thru Thursday 24, 2008
Sunday April 20th
Early arrivals.
General gathering of the Seadevils
Hotel Room # assigned as : Hospitality Usage
Monday April 21st
0800 Hospitality Room "Salon F"
Check-in get info packet
1100-1500 Bar open
1200-1330 Luncheon - Welcome Aboard Reception
1330-2200 Hospitality Room Open
Tuesday April 22nd
All Day - Hospitality Room "Salon F"
1700 BALLROOM - CACW ceremony
1800 - Historian Presentation CSAR Videos, etc.
1800-2200 Bar Open
Wednesday April 23rd
All Day Hospitality Room "Salon F"
Free Time
1800-2200 Bar Open
1800-1900 BALLROOM - All Hands Happy Hour
1900-2030 Banquet, entertainment, songs.
2030-2200 Entertainment, songs, etc.
Thursday April 24th
Hospitality Room "Salon F"
0900-1130 Farewell Buffet Breakfast/Brunch
1100 Planning Meeting "Select either Pensacola or San Diego for 2010"
1200 End of business (Say our good bye's)

Final arrangements are being made for the 2008 Reunion in Las Vegas. The Reunion Committee is
hoping that this gathering will be bigger then the 2006 Reunion in San Diego. As we continue to
gather more of our history we know that the upcoming 2008 Reunion will be a great
deal of fun and as in the 2006 Reunion more of our shipmates will attend for the first time.

We have obtained some spectacular new memorabilia, that we figure will be liked by all. So, though it
is a year from now, begin to make your plans to attend, making this reunion even more spectacular then the 2006 Reunion..

On Tuesday Night, Ron Milam will present his updated Power Point Presentation that will blow everyone
away. Pictures, stories, and many memories of the past will be covered in the presentation.

On Wednesday Night during the Banquet the normal "Big Mother and Little Clementine Awards will
be presented" plus a very special AWARD will be given to the Mystery Person.

The guest speaker has yet to be selected, but we are looking for one that be appropriate for this reunion.

Once again we hope to have for our Entertainment Group of "Bob Wright and the Wrongs". Maybe not
to be forgotten, the Vertrep Detachmentcan sing a song like the great John "Moon" Wilson sang a song
for us "H'2s Forever Guys" HUK 2 MAN like at the 2006 Reunion..

Lots of fun will be had by all, many SEA STORIES TOLD, and lots of great memories will be exchanged once again.

One last thing, if you have not joined the. HC7_SEADEVILS Yahoo Group, please come join and keep the
communications between the Seadevil Shipmates going.

HC-7 Seadevils Yahoo Group

To contact the "HC-7 Reunion Committee" either email "HC7CSAR@COX.NET or send mail to :

Phil Poisson
P.O. Box 531558
San Diego, Ca. 92153


REUNION May 18-21, 2006 in San Diego

Aboard the USS MIDWAY CV-41.

Thursday 18 May USS Midway Reception

Friday 19 May USS Midway Combat AC Wings Ceremony

Saturday 20 May Handlery Hotel Crystal Ballroom CSAR Banquet

Sunday 21 May Handlery Hotel Farewell Breakfast, Crystal Room

To put it simply 'WOW", it was fantastic. From all over the world and country came 268 friends, guests, and families of some departed Seadevils. Shipmates from the early 1950's HU-1 days to present day active duty personnel and presenters. From the opening of the Hospitality Rooms when Ron Milam's Historical Work was set up, you could tell it was going to be great.

The opening reception of he USS MIDWAY was absolutely outstanding. The next day was the Combat Aircrew Wings presentations aboard the USS Midway, on the forecastle, 19 very special Aircrew Personnel received their long awaited Combat Aircrew Wings. With the CO's, Rescuee's and guest presenter 's this ceremony was quite special and attended by many Family and Friends. A special presentation was made for our departed Seadevil, Richard Tinsley, with Jim Keeney receiving the Combat Aircrew Wings for Tinsley. This certificate was then signed by all the Aircrew present and is being mailed to Tinsley's daughter Ms. Beth Trynoski.

"2006 CAW Awardee's and Presenters"

Later on Friday Night, Ron Milam did a Power Point Presentation that blew everyone away. Pictures, stories, and many memories of the past were covered in a 45 minute presentation. After completion of that John "Moon" Wilson, presented a special "DVD" presentation that covered our purpose during the Vietnam War. It was absolutely 'FANTASTIC'.

On Saturday Night we had, what I would say was the best Banquet Meal we have ever had. Everyone was pleased. We had the current Commanding Officer of HCS-5 CDR. Pat Baccanari as our guest speaker. He presented us with a current day explanation of what Combat Search and Rescue is like now. Also he showed a short DVD of current Operations that made all of us cheer.

For our Entertainment the Special Group of "Bob Wright and the Wrongs" sang the Ballad of Big Mother (Super Sar). Not to be forgotten, John "Moon" Wilson sang a song for us "H'2s Forever Guys" HUK 2 MAN.

Lots of fun was had by all, many SEA STORIES TOLD, and lots of great memories we exchanged once again.

One other thing that made this REUNION so very special, was that the Family of a departed Seadevil, Lt. Joe Behunin attended the reunion. Really a very special group, from Keith and Nancy Christensen, Ben Behunin, Greg Behunin, Matt Behunin, Alex Behunin, and Matt Behunin.

Also in attendance was Jim Lloyd (one of our rescuee's). His story and comments we great, plus he was the presenter of the Combat Aircrew Wings to Doug "Stretch" Ankney and Matt Szymanski, the aircrew on the aircraft that rescued him. Harry Zinzer the pilot for BIG Mother was also in attendance.

The final thing is that Las Vegas was selected as the place for the 2008 Reunion. Hope to see you there.

Future updates will be sent once we have collected pictures, etc.

Also, we have started a Yahoo group. HC7_SEADEVILS, so if you go to Yahoo and search undo groups, you can join this group. This way you can communicate with fellows Seadevils.

To contact the "HC-7 Reunion Committee" either email "HC7CSAR@COX.NET or send mail to :

Phil Poisson
P.O. Box 531558
San Diego, Ca. 92153


REUNION APRIL 21st thru 24th, 2004 IN MEMPHIS

Proposed schedule of events.

Initial schedule looks something like this so far:

Wed 21 April
Check in Volunteers set up Hospitality Room

Thurs 22 April
Golf, Tours, etc. Check in and reception Hospitality Room

Friday 23 April
Golf, tours Hospitality Room Evening Riverboat Cruise

Sat 24 April
Hospitality Room Reunion Committee Meeting
Vote for next reunion place for 2006
Select 2006 reunion Chairman
Golf, tours, etc
Banquet at NSA with presentations, photos, raffle, etc.

Sunday 25 April
Volunteers Break down Hospitailty Room
Farewell Brunch

This is going to be a grand reunion.

The weather will still be pleasant, the Seadevils will meet again.



Article submitted by Bob Cameron.

FYI, we're looking at Thursday April 22nd - Sunday April 25th, 2004, for the next reunion, in Memphis. That's the week after Easter, the month before Tornado season officially opens, the month before rates go sky-high for the extended "Memphis in May" activities, and the season before the steambath weather sets in. That's flexible, and we're still collecting prices and contacts, but we have a menu of activities that we think will work, including the following potentials: Presentation at Lassen Building at NSA (that's Naval Support Activity Midsouth - I can remember when it was NAS Memphis) Riverboat Dinner Cruise Golf at the course at NSA Beale Street jazz area for evening partying Gibson Guitar Factory for Bobs Jones and Wright to tour Graceland Tour (I'll try to get Elvis to make an appearance, but he's so busy bagging groceries at the local Kroger that I don't know if he can arrange the time off) John Birch "Memphis Underworld" tour - available at $10,000/person, with waiver of all liability signed in advance Banquet, likely at NSA (available elsewhere, but why pay more for the same lukewarm string beans?) Barbeque Buffet (that's REAL barbeque, not any of that pretend stuff you get in Texas, Florida, California, etc. [NC excluded]) Memphis Belle (B17, recently moved for restoration (Hayes-Dothan not involved), should be refurbished by 4/04) Panda Exhibit at Memphis Zoo (recently opened - oooh, they're soooooo cute!) Various other activities & sights are available, including the National Civil Rights Museum, the Ornamental Metal Museum (say that one fast 4 times in a row), "Dolly Parton Bridge" viewings of the Mississippi river and the rice paddies of Arkansas (hey, they beat the rice paddies of S.E.A.!), and more purple-tail FedEx planes than you'd expect out at the world's busiest cargo airport (unfortunately, thanks to Osama, FedEx has stopped tours through the "Hub," but I doubt we'd have had many takers for the midnight schedule there anyway), and the normal BOGSAT (bunch of guys sitting around a table) for those who haven't told or listened to enough lies yet. Lodging is available at numerous locations, including NSA Memphis at the Navy Lodge, if we want to try for that (problem is, that's about 20 miles north of Memphis proper), down to Graceland (problem is, that's about 20 miles south of NSA Memphis), and elsewhere around the metropolitan area (Memphis is a city of about 800,000 in an area of about 1.2 million, and it's pretty spread out). Naturally, there are (as in any metropolitan area) zones you really don't want to get lost in, trying to make your way through uncharted territory. I'd like to hear your views on whether the population at large (i.e. those who'll actually attend) would prefer to hunker down at the base and drive to/from the city activities, or motel it in the city and drive to/from the base activities. We're tending toward the hunkering, also noting it will probably be cheaper, but are open to feedback. Naturally, while these activities are certainly worth a king's ransom - hey, John Birch's company alone is worth that - I expect we'll follow up with sign-up lists and confirmations as we get closer. You call, we . . . (gosh, how did that go? who says my memory's going?)

Good time had by all.

The events scheduled were fantastic, thanks to all the hard work.

Lots of pictures were taken and are now up on the Web Site listed.

Next Reunion is scheduled for 2004 in Memphis.

Plan to attend.

One last note: "Bob Wright and the Wrongs" were great.


Article submitted by Charlie Akins.

Remember the old adage of how time flies when you are having fun? It is the intent of this newsletter contribution to allow those of you who could not make the June 2000 Sea Devil Reunion in Vegas to share in a small way some of the pleasures of this event. First order of business has to be that we all owe a debt of gratitude to Joe Skrzypek and his lovely bride for all the efforts they put forth to make our reunion a complete success, beginning with the check-in at the hotel till the departure. "This line may be edited by Cdr. Parthemer, but not by you Joe, as it is just a fact, and I outrank you so just accept all our thanks and recombination." The reunion kicked off with a reception in a ballroom which gave us plenty of space to mill around and visit most of Tuesday afternoon. As has been the case at each of the reunions (three previous), this is a most enjoyable time as some of us are trying to place a name to each other. Of course there always has to be those who do not show their age as much as others and it adds to the fun or sorrow to some of us. An example would be Victor Martinez, who just this year found out about our reunions and decided to join in. We are certainly glad he did, but how does he stay so young looking, and you know, he won't tell us. Wednesday was a free day to tour, golf or other enjoyment as we wanted. Some did a little of all. Vegas offers every level of dining that one could look for from snacks to gourmet, and we did it all that evening. Thursday morning we had our business meeting and after lots of discussion, it was decided to have and executive steering committee consisting of all C.O.'s, some CPO's and other enlisted. I am not sure that the membership by name has been completely finalized, but their task is to assist the permanent Association President (Joe Skrzypek was elected) in his duties. He is too oversee the area coordinators efforts to locate those that have yet to be accounted for, supervise and coordinate memorabilia for the reunions, assist with appropriate speakers and other general long term efforts for the welfare of the HC-7 Association. It was decided that the reunion chairman would be elected each reunion for the next reunion and would terminate when all business concerning that particular reunion is complete. Therefore, Earl Rogers, Capt.-USN-Ret. was elected and accepted the awesome task of providing the coordination and planning for 2002. He will be most abley assisted by CO #2 Don Gregory, Cdr.-USN-Ret. and probably Cdr. Jim Jowers and Tom Pruter and Ed Woolam. And others. For those of you that attended Pensacola 1995, you already know how beautiful our Naval Aviation Museum is, and for those that have not been to either a reunion or to the museum, you simply cannot afford too miss this event. Another plus is that the museum has changed drastically since 95, for instance the Cubi "O" club bar is set up in its entirety now for display. A real piece of Naval history since that is the most famous piece of stress relief furniture in existence. The IMAX theater is also a must see. Back to Vegas 2000 business. Area coordinators have volunteered and they will be named later in this newsletter. They are primarily for spreading the word as well as location efforts. HC-7 has a total of 945 members on its' roster but it had many, many more members during its' commissioned service between 1 Sept 1967 and 30 June 1975. At present, we have the location of 325 addresses and of them, only 180 have e-mail addresses. Therefore we have lots of work to do, because we intend to notify everyone of this association. At least they would have the knowledge that we exist and sincerely want their participation. We enjoy something special in HC-7. We were the only ones to do what we did and as such, enjoyed the opportunity to save lives and prevent more POW's. It caused us to be "brothers by adoption, and companions by choice" to quote Earle Warren at the dedication of George Washingtons monument in DC. Most of us are, and we eagerly await the time when all squadron members know of us, and make the choice to join in our most enjoyable reunions. It was stated by a former pilot (highly decorated) at this reunion that he had reservations concerning attending as he felt that he would sit with people he did not know and would not enjoy. He later stated that he was so wrong and that he would return to his home and would encourage all he knew to attend future reunions. So this is our plea; if you receive this newsletter, and know anyone who was a squadron shipmate, please contact your area coordinator with his name, phone number or any information which might assist us in getting the information to that person. E-mail is great for those that have and is preferred but not necessary. The final event was the banquet on Thursday evening. We had about 120 squadron members present and most had their wife, girlfriend or significant other with them. Rich Jaeger lead the group in reciting the "Pledge of Allegiance" and Ray Johnson provided a memorable invocation. It was a most enjoyable evening and certainly highlighted by the guest of honor, Willie Driscoll, Cdr.-USNR, Duke Cunninghams'sRIO, who gave a most inspiring and patriotic speech or rather dynamic talk. He showed slides used at Top-Gun and demonstrated some of the lessons he and others learned as fighter pilots, Naval Officers, and as a citizen of this wonderful country. It was not geared to fighter pilots, and was most warmly accepted by all. He made us rethink how lucky we are to enjoy this great nation and its most willing and loyal citizens who put their life on the line that others may have the same freedom weather or not they believe in what we did or do. If your pride did not show in some way, then you were not there. He could do the very same performance in 2002 and it would be enjoyed just as much. Yes he even opened the bar for all hands, as he remembers who rescued him


Chairman's Column

      There is good news and bad news. The bad news first? OK. I was rail—uh, that is re-elected as the Chairman so that I may have another chance to get it right this time. I understood that the same committee would be there with me so how could I not accept.

      All kidding aside, I feel that the committee did an outstanding job of arranging and handling all the myriad of details that resulted in a memorable time for all. The location of the headquarters at "Quality Resort" proved to be a very good choice, thanks primarily to the efforts of Bob Doane.

      Our ADMIN was the main attraction on a continuing basis. The coffee was always on as well as availability of other refreshments but the common gathering place it provided for the re-telling of those old stories once again, reviewing the pictures from everywhere, recalling the names nearly forgotten and meeting new friends from another era made all the efforts worthwhile.

      The Kitty Hawk tour was hampered by the ship going through a pierside overhaul but still enjoyed by those who braved the obstacles and were so warmly received by the Commanding Officer and the crew.

      The Reserves, HCS-5 and HS-84, treated us to a hands on visit with the new CSAR aircraft, guns and equipment on the ramp at their hangar. Also the Old H-3 was there just so a few diehards could shed a tear and relive a few still vivid memories. A ready room briefing, following the ramp visit, was given by Cdr Bellant, CO HCS-5. Of course I could not resist the chance to show the "National Ensign" of the Squadron's berth place. (story later)

      The banquet at the Aero Space Museum on Saturday night(177 attendees with HC-9 being well represented), was as advertised, a great setting for a reception and dinner but we had to compete with the traffic pattern noise into Lindberg Field. However "Bear" and Mary Elmendorf returned the "BIG MOTHER" and introduced "LITTLE CLEMENTINE" so there are now two very happy custodians taking care of and displaying(?) these treasures until we meet again.

      As you will see else where in this newsletter, the decision was unanimous to "piggyback " our next reunion onto the Naval Helicopter Association's April 98 Symposium. That will be the celebration of the 50th anniversary of induction of the Helicopter into Fleet Squadrons. (HU-1&2 April 1, 1948) . I have recommended to the NHA that they , on a onetime basis only, waive the registration fee for non-members and allow all members of squadrons or other commands that "piggyback" to fully participate (at the member rate) for all activities during their symposium.

      We will have our own activities in addition to NHA's say, an ADMIN, Harbor Cruise or Patio Buffet or ?? and a members business meeting. I plan to have a computer hookup in our admin so we can be on the internet to see our homepage as well as many others. Also, a VCR will be available so bring your VHS tapes to share.

      Early decisions must be made regarding the April Reunion as that is spring break also. This will be a great opportunity to meet, not old but, "friends of long standing" and renew those memories. Please pass along your ideas, comments and criticisms as well. Lets have a great 98 reunion. I remain, Seadevil One.

Reunion Banquet

      One of the highlights of the 1997 Reunion was the banquet held at the center of the San Diego Aerospace Museum in Balboa park. What a great location to talk of CSAR past, present and future. The attendee list grew to 177 with the support of the CSAR reservists--active and retired.

      Mike Reber performed as a worthy MC, as he has done for so many naval aviation activities over the years. He allowed that as a former HC-7 Sea Devil, he had fond memories of the CSAR part of the squadron. As an admitted "CSAR Groupie", Mike reminisced about what life was like at Atsugi for those who missed it, cruise wives and all.

      Guest speaker, LCOL Keith Tibbits, USMC, provided a great update on CSAR with a great deal of history. I am sure his historical look at our activities, which came from various government files, didn't always reflect our personal experiences. So much for squadron historians and an accurate annual input to SECNAV. He also provided a great first hand look at the Scott O'Grady rescue in Bosnia a few years back.

      The awards portion of the evening resulted in Serena Poisson receiving custody of "Big Mother" and "Dirty Dave" McCracken receiving custody of the newly refurbished "Clementine". The other awards (raffle winners) received San Diego Chargers Quarterback Stan Humphries memorabilia and free golf lessons from Ken Lowe, winner of the most swings taken award at the golf tournament. Floyd Murphy won the most two-putts award, but didn't offer his services to teach his skills.

      All in all, it was a great night and the support from HC-9 and HCS-5 made it a real treat for all. The food was good and the fellowship and memories were great. However, many people were missed. Charlie Akins was generally recognized as the one coming from the greatest distance (Austell, GA), but he said he didn't come by helo. Something about reliability! Rich Jaeger


        The following folks were in San Diego for the fun and festivities. Is your name there? If not, make plans to join us for the next one.

Jay Pettit
Ed Coleman
Charlie Akins
Frank Lockett
Joe Skrzypek
Bob Doane
John Cook
Len Woltersdorf
Phil Poisson
Lloyd Parthemer
L. C. Johnson
Gene Gilbert
Ken Kirkpatrick
B. C. Lamberth
Bob Elerick
Rob Meyer
Len Devries
Leroy Cook
Dan Davey
Martin Fay
Marty Siems
John Krol
Joe Campbell
Victor Martinez
Floyd Murphy
Webster Copsey
Dave McCracken
Rich Jaeger
Steve Miedaner
Al O'Meally
Bill Hancock
Michael White
John Soto
Dale Barck
Bud Barnes
Frank Bailey
Ernie Banks
Roger Clemons
Vic Jennings
Rick Dombrowski
Gene Gilbert
Ken Lowe
Gary Richter
Havier Talavera
Don Edwards
George Togliatti
Lloyd Duncan
Mike Reber
Roger Murphy
Gary Nichols
Dennis Neuman
Bear Elmendorf
John Rolls
Bob Wright
Loren Hammond
Walt Lester
Judy Liles
Laura Brennan
Tom Freed

Co-Chairman's Corner

      I would like to extend my thanks to all Officers and Enlisted with their wives & friends who came to the Reunion. I would like all your help in finding lost shipmates who are out there. You all have rosters, so call a few and let me know. It took only a few phone calls for me to get in touch with some "Shipmates" I had not seen in "27 Years. One is in Canada. And the other one is in Las Vegas. They both came to our Reunion and had fun. I was real surprised that I knew every one there, except new wives and girl friends. So you "E" out there help us out and make this one in April 1998 for all shipmates and not just a few.

      I am looking forward in April to get acquainted with shipmates new and old that were not at the last Reunion. I will let you know what the "Reunion" ment to me in our next newsletter. Also please give me some feed back on how it was for you, and what we can do to make it better. John Soto


      Dale Barck took lots of pictures during the reunion. He and Marina have been putting them in order and want to make them available to those who'd like them. They are also putting together a pictorial of the event, so if you took some good photos and would be willing to share, please contact them at (619) 420-6027.


Clyde Lassen Theater Seat Designated
During the 1995 HC-7 reunion in Pensacola, members honored Clyde Lassen by dedicating a permanent seat in the New Naval Aviation Museum Theater. Earle Rogers reported that the inscription on the arm of Clyde's seat reads:

In Memoriam:

The seat: ROW H SEAT 7 (HC-7)
was chosen by Mrs. Linda Lassen

Congressman Randy Cunningham honored at 1995 reunion
Congressman Randy (Duke) Cunningham and his RIO, LT Driscol, were shot down by a surfact to air missle (SAM) on 10 May 1972. Randy was rescued by HC-7'S LT Kautsky, LT Driscoll, AT2 McCann and AMS3 Foley completing HC-7'S 98th rescue. Retrieval of the VF-96 aviator occurred 30 nautical miles Northwest of Haiphong, 5 miles off the coast of North Viet Nam. LT Driscol (VF-96), was rescued by LT Pinegar, LT Kennedy, ADJ2 Freeman and ADRAN Milledge.

Randy was guest of honor at the HC-7 1995 reunion in Pensacola, Florida. During planning stages we hoped that he would be our main speaker at the Saturday evening banquet. Much to our delight he accepted not only to speak at the banquet but he participated in the picnic and other activities. As our most famous rescuee Randy Cunningham mingled with the group and listend to our views and concerns. It is hoped that he will be an honored guest at the HC-7 1997 Reunion in San Diego.

Perfect in Pensacola
The San Diego 1997 reunion committee has a hard act to follow after the flawless execution of events at the 1995 HC-7 reunion in Pensacola. As those of you who were there know, the reception in the museum, the BBQ and the Mustin Beach Officers Club and the Banquet in the Museum were truly outstanding experiences. The food was warm, delicious, plentiful and professionally served. Thanks to the arrangments made by Earl Rogers, we heard only praise for his successful efforts. The 1995 reunion chariman also expresses a hearty THANK YOU to Ed Parker for motel arrangements, Sunday brunch and fishing, Don Gregory accomodation research, Tom Pruter, treasurer/coordinator Bob and Barbara Jones, recreation Jim Miron, Golf.