The Grey Eagles​ 



Serving the Pilots of American Airlines  

​​​​​​October 28 thru November 04, 2016

Grey Eagles & TWA 2016 Convention
New Orleans, LA
Convention Report

Grey Eagles President – Captain Melanie Jarvi
TWA Retired Pilots Association – Captain Dusty West


          The first joint land based convention with the Grey Eagles and TWA was held in New Orleans from October 28th through November 4, 2016. The headquarters hotel was the Hotel Monteleone on Royal Street with a contracted room rate was $149 for the major convention nights. The US Air Soaring Eagles were also invited and 12 guests attended from this association of retired pilots.

          The location of the hotel was ideal. Centered on Royal Street allowed easy access to all the restaurants, specialty shopping, live music, coffee & beignets, and of course the novelty of Bourbon Street was just around the corner.

          A total of 294 guests registered and attended the event.
          233 Grey Eagles - 79%
          49 TWA – 17%
          12 Soaring Eagles – 4%
          The group picked up a total of 690 room nights over 7 days. We had quite a few
          terrific events that will be highlighted below.


City & Cemetery Tour  –  138 guests on Monday & Thursday
         Cajun Encounters of New Orleans provided this private tour including all the highlights of the city. Our guests visited Jackson Square, St. Louis Cathedral, the Garden District with the beautiful architecture of the Antebellum era and the above ground cemeteries. In addition the tragedy of Hurricane Katrina was addressed with a visit to the 9th Ward. The tour concluded with a scrumptious lunch at Huck Finn’s Café.


Steamboat Natchez – 227 guests
          Cruising down the Mississippi River Boat, listening to live jazz, and enjoying a Mint Julep is certainly the best way to spend a day in New Orleans. The majority of out guests included the Steamboat Natchez on their visit to the “Big Easy” and the cruise with a delicious buffet of local cuisine was thoroughly enjoyed by all.


Auxilliary Members Tea – 40 guests
          This event is a special opportunity for us to welcome and get to know our widows. Their lives were forever intertwined with the airline and they are always welcome at the convention. The hotel served scrumptious beignets and coffee at the one hour hosted event. The ladies always seem to enjoy this opportunity to get to know one another.


Welcome Reception – 272 guests

          What a terrific “Mardi Gras” themed party we had for our Welcome Reception! Greeted by two beautiful showgirls, entertained by strolling magicians, intriguing tarot card reader and palm readers, add unlimited cocktails and a vast array of amazing food and we started our convention out in style! Special thanks to all of the volunteers that made the evening so special. Especially the bartenders who worked tirelessly for the entire evening….Stephanie & Ed Cook, Ilse & Bob Dedman, Gene York and J.C. Farrell….our thanks!

Oak Alley Plantation– 64 guests
          This historic mansion is representative of the grandeur and privilege of living on a southern plantation in the 1800’s. The event included a guided tour of the of the mansion and grounds and a special buffet lunch of local fare.


National WWII Museum – 241 guests
         Considered one of the highlights of the week was our day and evening at the National WWII Museum. Guests were invited to tour the myriad of exhibits, galleries, and experiences throughout the day. We were treated to a private showing of the 4D movies “Beyond All Boundaries” (Produced and narrated by Tom Hanks) then escorted to the Freedom Pavillion for our private event. We were greeted by 3 lovely USO ladies “The Liberty Bells” singing patriotic music from the 1940’s A special presentation was provided by the museum collections manager followed with a delightful buffet dinner. Many guests have said this event was one of their favorites of the week.


Honey Island Swamp Tour – 126 guests
          No doubt this event is truly unique to the southern bayou. Visiting alligators and leaning how the people living the Cajun country was an experience enjoyed by many. The event was topped off with a Muffaletta sandwich at the Southside Café in Slidell, Louisiana. You won’t find an event like this anywhere except the south!


Banquet dinner – 230 guests
Entertained by Dr. Jazz and his six piece live band made the evening very special. We had a full ballroom with dinner, dancing and a special presentation by the new President of the Allied Pilots Association, Captain Dan Carey. The evening wouldn’t have been as beautiful or fun without the amazing centerpieces designed and created by Susy Madigan (Ed Madigan’s lovely wife). The hats and saxophones were all over including everyone on the dance floor. It was a great evening enjoyed by all.


Special Mention – Joint Hospitality Suite – Riverview Room
2016 was the first year the hotel allowed us to bring in our own beverages into a public meeting room. The hotel provided the Riverview Room on the 16th floor with a beautiful view of the Mississippi River. This joint hospitality suite was a great success. Almost everyone commented that having the entire group together was a great idea. It allowed for the Grey Eagles from every domicile to spend time together and all guests to mingle with the “other” groups and created a great opportunity to meet new friends. The Grey Eagles, TWA and Soaring Eagles all enjoyed being together every evening and certainly many new friendships were formed. Again, there is no doubt the success was due primarily to the hosts including Ed & Stephanie Cook and Bob & Ilse Dedman and J.C. Farrell.


Special Thanks to the Registration Room Volunteers –
          Many wives of the Grey Eagles and TWA work weeks in advance and during the entire convention to prepare, organize and greet our guests in the Registration Room. Special thanks to Lee West, Carolyn Landbeck, Connie Brooks, Gail York, and Helen Wilder for their time and efforts.


          Of course special thanks to DeEtte Hoch who makes the dinner seating go so smoothly with her organization and attention to detail. Not to mention she greets everyone with a smile and sits at her table for hours each day!

          Congratulations to President Melanie Jarvi for a tremendously successful convention. Captain Jarvi worked for a year planning, organizing, and promoting the 2016 convention in New Orleans. It was her recommendation to visit New Orleans and her selection of the beautiful Hotel Monteleone. Melanie….Job well done.

          See you all in San Diego in 2017!
Submitted by: Vicki McGowen, Meeting Planner

#####

​Officers elected for 2017

President - Charlie Morton

​1st Vice President - Peter Eschauzier

​2nd Vice President - J. C. Farrell

Secratary - Robert Hoch

​Treasurer - Steve Brooks
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August 23 – August 30, 2015

​Grey Eagles & TWA 2015
Celebrity Cruise Convention
Bermuda

Convention Report
Grey Eagles President – Captain Fred Landbeck
TWA Retired Pilots Association – Captain Dusty West


The Grey Eagles and TWA joined forces for a cruise to Bermuda departing Cape Liberty on August 23rd for 7 nights aboard the Celebrity Summit ship. Celebrity offered attractive cabin rates, 2 hosted cocktail parties, a $25 on board credit and a complimentary Classic Beverage Package for all guests. We dined together each evening and enjoyed exceptional entertainment and great service throughout the cruise.

The US Air Soaring Eagles were also invited and one couple attended– Captain Jim Fisher and his lovely wife Marge. They were warmly welcomed and enjoyed our hospitality throughout the week.

A total of 235 guests sailed:
-173 - Grey Eagles - 74%
46 - TWA – 20%
2 – US Air - Soaring Eagles – 1%

The Newark Hilton was selected as a pre-cruise hotel and group transportation was provided from both the hotel and then back to the airport upon our return. The hotel offered a special rate of $119.00 per night and complimentary airport shuttles which made it quite convenient for our guests. We picked up 84 rooms the night before the cruise and 10 rooms following the cruise.

One of the disappointments at the hotel was that they closed the main dining room on Saturday night. No one informed us in advance so we had over 150 guests in the hotel that needed dinner. Since no one had transportation most were limited to the hotel option. The Executive Chef worked quickly and offered a few special menu items in the bar and lounge. The menu was limited and the service slow. It turned out OK but we were quite displeased that the hotel failed to inform us in advance.

From all accounts the group thoroughly enjoyed the ship, the food quality and the service. The ladies event featured Teena Cahill as guest speaker and the ship provided a private section of the restaurant and a special menu, which the ladies seemed to enjoy. The ship provided hors d’oeuvres and entertainment at the hosted cocktail parties and made the events very special. There was a nice turnout at both business meetings.

We typically request a bridge tour for the VIP’s of the group and generally are extended 10-12 invitations. When the captain of the Summit learned that the group was comprised of retired airline captains he invited ALL of the members to tour the bridge. It took most of the day but all of the guys (and a few female pilots) enjoyed a personalized visit to the bridge of the ship. It was a highlight of the trip.

There was a threat of a major hurricane heading to Bermuda just a week before our departure. We received quite a few calls and emails with concerns. However, the storm moved out to sea and the weather was beautiful for the entire week.

We were somewhat concerned with the low number of attendees since the cruise in 2011 attracted almost 400 guests. Captain Landbeck believed it was partially because we scheduled the cruise the last week of August. The Grey Eagles and TWA typically hold their conventions in October or November so this should be considered with cruise events in the future. Submitted by: Vicki McGowen, Meeting Planner


​​Officers elected for 2016
President -  Melinie Jarvi
1st Vice President - Charlie Morton

2nd Vice President - Peter Eschauzier
Secretary – Bob Hoch
Treasurer – Steve Brooks

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October 6-10, 2014
Harrah’s Casino & Hotel
Las Vegas, NV

President: Bill Rose
Convention Chairs: DeEtte and Bob Hoch
***************
Officers for 2015
President – Fred Landbeck
First VP -  Melinie Jarvi
Second VP - Charlie Morton
Secretary – Bob Hoch
Treasurer – Steve Brooks

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Las Vegas 2014

The 2014 National Convention was dedicated to the premise that Grey Eagles are “Great People Having A Great Time!!”
Preregistration for the restricted Nevada National Security Site Tour of the atomic testing area began in 2012 at the Savannah Convention.  Videos showing planned activities were published on the Grey Eagles website one year prior to the convention and drew 1631 views.
Tough negotiations with Caesar’s Entertainment resulted in a $69 a night rate for their classic room and $99 a night for the deluxe room.  At the time of the convention, the negotiated rates resulted in an average savings of over $130 per night on each room and nearly $85,000 over the convention duration.  The room savings alone would have paid over 70% of the members’ event costs.

Monday, October 6th, was a busy day of registration and settling-in.  Followed by a short evening stroll across the street to enjoy Terry Fator, winner of “America’s Got Talent”, as he dazzled us with his amazing skills as a ventriloquist, impersonator and singer.

Tuesday was another busy day in registration.  The bus for the Nevada National Security Site Tour departed early in the morning with every seat filled.  The golfers departed shortly thereafter for the Las Vegas National Golf Club where Tiger Woods won his first tournament, and the "RAT PACK" played and entertained.  In the afternoon, the Auxiliary members meet for tea in the Presidential Suite.  Tuesday evening’s Reception found the Grey Eagle’s making a full house in the famed Auto Collection, enjoying heavy hors d’oeuvres, carving stations and vintage music.  Unfortunately, during the reception Bev Kelso, wife of Captain Dick Kelso, suffered a food-choking accident.  Very sadly, complications claimed her life five days later.

Wednesday started early with 7 am bus departures to Nellis AFB to visit the Warfare Training Center, Thunderbird Museum, Threat Center and numerous aircraft, including the F-22 and F-35.  Another group departed to visit the nearby Red Rock Canyon, one of the Mojave Desert’s most beautiful attractions.  Wednesday evening the group reassembled for Grey Eagle’s’ Night at Bally’s Pacific Room for a private buffet followed by a superb high tempo Jersey Boys performance at the Paris Theater.

Thursday, three options to see the historic Hoover Dam were offered.  Some members selected to visit only the dam and generator room followed by a candy factory and cactus garden.  Others elected to add an additional paddleboat cruise on Lake Meade.  Another group elected to start out with a raft trip below the dam and then pick up the dam tour.  Thursday evening found 138 members enjoying an intimate and powerful entertainment experience at Cirque du Soleil’s Beatles’ LOVE production.

Friday saw a well-attended business meeting with excellent discussion and spirited voting.  Eighty members attended the Spouse Luncheon, where everyone thoroughly enjoyed author Mary Schramski as the guest speaker.  Following the business meeting and luncheon, members departed for tours of the Mob Museum, Atomic Testing Museum and Clark County Museum.
Friday evening’s Grey Eagles’ Banquet was the wrap-up of “Great People; having a Great Time.”  Tim Campbell, Senior Vice President of Air Operations for American Airlines was the keynote speaker.  He easily held everyone’s attention and candidly discussed integration of the two airlines.  Captains Robert E. Mangum and Dale K. Johnson were presented Grey Eagle Special Recognition Awards for their outstanding and diverse service to the organization.

Two hundred eighty-two members attended the convention and over 1,735 individual ticketed activities occurred.  From the bottom of nuclear blast craters, through Nellis AFB and the area hospitality suites, to the base of Hoover dam--Grey Eagles had a Great Time! 
Once again, a strong debt of gratitude is due APA.  They have consistently proven to be a strong partner and financial contributor to the Grey Eagles.
Voting membership stands at 3,181

  
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August 19-30, 2013
Celebrity Cruise Lines
“Celebrity Millennium”
Seward, Alaska
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President: Bruce D. Ott
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Officers for 2014
President – Bill Rose
First VP – Fred Landbeck
Second VP - Melinie Jarvi
Secretary – Gary Yudell
Treasurer – JC. Farrell
Alaska 2013

The 2013 Grey Eagles Cruise Convention was a lesson in flexibility.  On August the 19th, one hundred and two Grey Eagles, rallied in Fairbanks Alaska to begin the Denali National Park option of Celebrity’s southbound Alaska Glacier Cruise.  After enjoying panning for gold, paddleboat and Indian village tours, the group headed for Denali on the Wilderness express train. In Denali, everyone enjoyed the wildlife,scenic overlooks, mirror-like lakes, valleys of tundra flora and the icy peak of Mount McKinley.

 

On August 20, 2013 at 7:55 pm the following message was sent out; “Hello, this is Celebrity Cruises. We would like to provide you with important information regarding your August 23, sailing onboard Celebrity Millennium. Unfortunately, due to the time needed to make unscheduled repairs to the ship, it is necessary to cancel your sailing. We are deeply sorry for this unexpected development in your upcoming vacation.”  The Millennium had suffered an “engine failure” and was out of operation.

 

Over eighty members who planned on joining the cruise convention in Anchorage were cancelled in the States.  The Denali Group continued their tour and arrived in Anchorage on August 22nd.  In Anchorage, as flight reservations were being made to get the Denali Group back to the states, a quickly arraigned evening business meeting was held at the Anchorage Marriott Hotel.  Proxies had been gathered stateside and forwarded to Anchorage to insure a quorum was available for the annual meeting.  Bylaws were amended and new officers elected during the one-hour evening meeting.

Vicki McGowen of McGowen Marketing was outstanding in obtaining both refunds and future cruise credits from Celebrity for those members affected by the cancellation.

Membership stands at 3,184.
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November 11-15, 2012
On the river at the Hyatt Regency
Savannah, Georgia
President 
Anthony M. Fortune
Convention Chairs
Art & April Culver

Officers for 2013
President 
Bruce D. Ott 

First VP - William C. Rose
Second VP - Fred B. Landbeck
Secretary - Gary E. Yudell
Treasurer - John C. Farrell

Savannah 2012

 I think most everybody enjoyed the 2012 Grey Eagles Convention in Savannah, Georgia. The Hyatt Regency, our headquarters hotel, was very accommodating to all our needs. Housing and Banquet facilities were of the highest quality. Our tours went off without a hitch, except when we couldn’t find Savannah Dan to conduct a walking tour of the city. This was then taken over by a guide from the company that handled all our tours, and nothing was lost. Our first activity, Golf at the fabulous Savannah Harbor Golf Club was overseen by my Convention Chairpersons, Art and April Culver and with the help of Bill Bury. This was well attended and enjoyed by all. Our Surviving Spouses Tea had half dozen ladies in attendance and ideas for future involvement in the Association, for our widows, were discussed. Later some 60 people braved the chilly air and took off in trolleys for the Ghosts and Gravestones Tour. A highlight of the Monday tours was the Gulfstream factory, unfortunately attendance for this tour was severely limited and only 40 members were able to attend. But all said that it was well worth going. Other tours of the city and surrounding countryside were enjoyed by a hundred and fifty people. Even 29 braved the city streets on Segways. I think all were sold on the benefits of that mode of transportation.

The first formal gathering at the Welcome Reception saw 270 in attendance. It was great to see everyone greeting each other once again. It was purposely kept short so that some of the local excellent restaurants could be enjoyed, and also an evening carriage ride around the city’s beautiful squares could be taken.

Tuesday was the day for a visit to the Mighty 8th Air Force Museum. Again this was attended by a hundred and fifty people. I was worried about the “Shepherds’ Pie” luncheon, but I heard no complaints about this ethnic British food! The museum itself was very impressive.

Grey Eagles’ night started off a trifle wet, but once the 290 members were onboard the Savannah Queen the merriment soon took over. Dinner was enjoyed on the way down to Old Fort Jackson, where bonfires warmed the evening, along with some fine Civil War stories, re-enactments, cannon and musket firing.

Wednesday saw the Business meeting well attended and one of the important things to come out of the meeting was the change in making our widows, and widowers, Auxiliary Members of the Association, with full voting rights. Another change was the make up of the Executive Board of the Association, where Dr. Jean Donovan was elected to the new position of Auxiliary Member Coordinator.

Captain Beverly Bass was the main speaker at the Ladies’ Brunch, attended by 90 ladies.

The afternoon saw a slight departure from normal where an informal session took place called “Conversations That Matter.” Dr. Jean Donovan was the main speaker and coordinator, along with myself, Tony Fortune. When proposing this talk we had hoped that 20 to 30 members might attend. We were somewhat stunned when over 90 showed up! The idea of an exchange of ideas, and offering help to those who may well find themselves grieving someday, was well received.

The final event took place in the River View room of the Hyatt hotel, where 250 sat down to our traditional banquet. The evening was started off by a rendition of our National Anthem sung by the “Savannah Storm,” an A Cappella group of youth members of the Barbershop Harmony Society. They went on to sing us a few more favorites and were well received. The ending of the evening was “interrupted” by a well known figure from the Savannah region. Forrest Gump lost his way to another affair and stopped by to give us some of his wisdom! A character of another well known Savannah resident, Paula Dean, joined him for some picture taking; she also told Forrest how to cook some of his shrimp.

So with 315 members and guests in attendance, throughout the week, Convention 2012 was put to rest. Unfortunately, the numbers were cut back rather by many last minute cancellations. Some of these, but by no means all, were due to the storm Sandy, affecting many of our friends in the North East, and we are very concerned for their loss. But that apart, these last minute cancellations really hurt us. Unlike cruise companies that usually insist on us taking out cancellation insurance, we do not ask that of our members. So when hotel contracts are made and then broken, because of these last minute cancellations, we are left holding the bag and owing the hotels money. This did not happen at our headquarters hotel, where we fulfilled our commitment, but at our overflow hotel, the Andaz, where we finished up paying $4,500 for the number of rooms that were left unfilled. Please consider this the next time you make reservations to one of our conventions.

Have a great 2013, and see you on the Alaskan cruise?

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October 15-22, 2011 
Royal Caribbean Cruise Line"Jewel of the Seas" 
Boston, MA

President: Ray Seymour
Convention Chairman: Bruce Ott
**********************
Officers for 2012
President 
Anthony M. Fortune

First VP - Bruce Ott
Second VP - William C. Rose
Secretary - Gary E. Yudell
Treasurer - John C. Farrell

The 2011 Grey Eagles Cruise Convention was a great success. The 7-night cruise on Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines Jewel of the Seas departed Boston on Saturday, October 15th(and returned on Saturday, October 22nd. We traveled with 370 guests booked in191 staterooms. Prior to the cruise a large numberbooked at least two nights at the Boston Logan Airport Embassy Suites Hotel. We opened our convention registration and checked in folks for the cruise and presented them with local tour information. Many of our Grey Eagles took the opportunity to see the very historic sights of Boston. These included the Freedom Trail, Old North Church, Beantown Trolley, and the DUCK tour in an amphibious vehicle. Hotels like airlines sometimes overbook causing about 20 of our group to be booked at another hotel. The Embassy suites did pay for their rooms and shuttled them back and forth. As further remuneration, the hotel picked up the cost of our Friday hosted cocktail party with hot and cold appetizers thereby saving us around $2500.00. Ken and Olive Dysart were honored by their children with a surprise cake for their 60th wedding anniversary. It was a great beginning! We started loading busses on Saturday morning for the pier and our embarkation. The bus company shorted us on busses causing a longer than expected wait time. Eventually all made the ship in plenty of time, but Vicki McGowan was able to obtain a refund saving the Grey Eagles more than $1000.00. The "Jewel" departed Boston promptly at 5 Pm for Portland, Maine our first port. Our first Grey Eagle event occurred shorty after departure and was a hosted cocktail party in the Safari Lounge at the ship's stern. It was well attended by our conventioneers, but one of our own became ill. Bob Newfield was taken to the ship's medical facility for evaluation. Consequently, Bob was taken off the ship and to a hospital in Gloucester, Massachusetts. He is on the mend from a stroke he suffered when he was in the hospital and is back home in California. Portland, Maine, Halifax Nova Scotia, St. John, New Brunswick, and Bar Harbor Maine were our ports of call. They offered beautiful sights and significanthistoric viewing opportunities for all. Of course the ship provided a splendid venue for eating, dancing and entertainment, gambling, and relaxing for all of us. A high note was our headline entertainer, Mr. Bobby Arvon. He gave a phenomenal performance and honored the Grey Eagles during his show. Wespecifically asked the cruise line to book him for us as he was on the first Grey Eagle cruise in October 2006. The annual membership meeting was held on board and 130 Grey Eagles attended. The By Law changes that were begun in 2010 were approved, as was a change to the dues structure. The 2012 Officers were elected and Ruthie Hinson for her continued support of the Grey Eagles was nominated and elected to Honorary membership. Although no officer of American Airlines or the APA could make the cruise both groups offered financial support to the Grey Eagles for 2011. It was deeplyappreciated. Once again Vicki McGowan planned and executed a wonderful event for the Grey Eagles. Special thanks to Carol Hirata who served as our official photographer. (The link for the photos is available on Kodak Easy Share. On this website you must join but you can download the photos for free, or order prints or, even an album if you like. 

http://www.kodakgallery.com/gallery/sharing/shareRedirectSwitchBoard.jsp?token=487629353409%3A1156184721

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October 28 – 31, 2010
Hyatt Regency Penn’s Landing
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

President:  Gary Yudell
Convention Chairman:  Gene Allen
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2011 Officers:
President – Ray Seymour
First VP – Tony Fortune
Second VP – Bruce Ott
Secretary – Jere Francis
Treasurer – Bob Mangam

Convention 2010 was held at the Hyatt Regency Penn’s Landing in Philadelphia, the cradle of this nations freedom.  As such, most tours were centered around the historic sites that the city has to offer. The Liberty Bell, Independence Hall,National Constitution Center, Christ Church, Carpenters Hall, Betsy Ross House, Elfreth’s Alley, The Battleship New Jersey, Winterthur (The DuPont Estate), Longwood Gardens and many others. The welcome reception was of course, well attended.  This is the first chance we have to get together and see folks we have not seen in a while. Grey Eagle Night was a dinner cruise along the Delaware River aboard the Spirit of Philadelphia.  The buffet dinner, dancing and  entertainment guaranteed a good time for all. The business meeting was long with the goal of passing the proposed new bylaws. The Banquet, held on the final night of the convention, was punctuated with a performance by a group of the famous Mummers in full costume that had the audience on their feet clapping and showing their appreciation for the performance.  During dinner, Special Recognition awards were presented to Bob Hock and Tom Eanes for many years of exceptional service to the Grey Eagles. Our thanks to the Area Directors, officers and other volunteers for their time and effort on our behalf. Post convention interviews indicated that with few exceptions, everyone had a great time and really enjoyed the city and the convention activities. That being said, this was a poorly attended convention with just over 200 in attendance.  The reasons for this are known only to those that did not attend but your national officers are obligated to prevent monetary losses when these events are planned. The trend over the past few years is declining attendance and therefore future conventions will have to be planned for lower attendance and we will hope that if more folks want to attend than were planned for that rooms can be obtained. As always, our gratitude to Captain Dave Bates and the APA for their loyalty and support of the Grey Eagles.  With the cooperation and support of John Hale, our new Vice President of Flight, the flight department of American Airlines was once gain able to contribute to our convention.

 
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September 24-27, 2009
Omni Mandalay Hotel
Irving, Texas
President: Donald C. Jensen

Convention Chairman:
Dale Johnson
*************
Officers for 2010:
President - Gary Yudell
First VP - Ray Seymour
Second VP - Tony Fortune
Secretary - Jere Francis
Treasurer - Bob Mangam

 

The weather was perfect!  The four star Omni Mandalay hotel provided outstanding luxury. The convention began with a golf outing at one of the best courses in the area.  There were a number of outstanding tours including the production line at Lockheed Martin to see the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter and a tour of the AA Alliance Maintenance base and the Rolls Royce Engine facility. There was also a tour to the outstanding Frontiers of Flight Museum which included an in-depth presentation on the SR-71. Included in this tour was a visit to the CR Smith Museum and a visit to the new 9-11 Flight Crew Memorial in Grapevine, Texas. For those that wanted other than just aviation tours, we had a very successful "Taste of Ft. Worth" tour which included historical tours, museums and a visit to the Stockyards historic district. There was also a tour of Dallas with visits to the world famous Nasher Sculpture center, the 6th floor museum and other cultural highlights. Grey Eagle Night was a "Taste of Texas Barbecue" and show at Circle R Ranch.  Each day we enjoyed the area directors spacious and well stocked hospitality suites. The welcome reception and the main banquet were both held at the Omni Mandalay with great food and service. The ladies enjoyed good food and entertainment at the ladies luncheon.  There was an English tea for the widows in the presidential suite. For the business meeting we heard from Capt. Lloyd Hill, APA president and from Capt. Mark Hetterman, American Airlines VP of Flight.  At the main banquet our speaker was Gerard Arpy, president of American Airlines. Another plus was having our great friend George Warde with us again.  We had planned for 500 attendees, but due to the financial climate ended up with 315.  We must thank the APA for their tremendous support every year and this year American Airlines also gave us a nice check in support of our efforts.  Jock Bethune was nominated and approved as an associate member of the Grey Eagles.

 

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2008
October 30 - November 2

Buena Vista Palace Hotel
Orlando, Florida
President: Art Culver
Convention Chairman:
George McKellar
***************
Officers for 2009:

President - Don Jensen
First VP - Gary Yudell
Second VP - Ray Seymour
Secretary - Jere Francis
Treasurer - Bob Mangam

 

The Convention began with a Golf Outing at Hawks Landing and then, in the evening, a spectacular performance at Cirque Du Soleil. The weather was great for the tours, which included a trip to the Kennedy Space Center, "Behind The Scenes" Disney Tour, Space Coast River Tour and Airboat Ride, and a Shopping trip. Grey Eagle Night, a highlight of the Convention, was held at Fantasy of Flight Air Museum. The many historic aircraft, a band playing the big band sounds of the 40's and guest speakers Robert "Hoot" Gibson, the well-known astronaut and Reno Air Racer, and Kermit Weeks, the founder of Fantasy of Flight made our evening a memorable one. Banquet Night was also outstanding. We were honored to have retired American Airlines President Bob Crandall as our speaker. Retired American Airlines President George Warde introduced Mr. Crandall, reminding Bob that he had been hired by George. It was good fun. Mark Hetterman, Vice President of Flight, and Lloyd Hill, APA President, along with George Warde spoke at the Business Meeting. The Ladies Luncheon was a great success. Held at Disney's Grand Floridian Hotel it included 2 entertainment offerings; The "Swingtime Sisters" and our guest speaker, John Tibbets. The state of the economy including gas prices and the declining stock market was reflected in our attendance of 330. The Grey Eagles rooster now indicates 3,045 members, including surviving spouses. 148 new members joined the Grey Eagles in 2008.

 

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2007
October 21-26 

Silver Legacy Resort Casino
Reno, Nevada
President: Glenn E. Cribbs
Convention Chairman:
John (Jack) Neilon
***************
Officers for 2008:
President - Art Culver
First VP - Don Jensen
Second VP - Gary Yudell
Secretary - Jere Francis
Treasurer - Bob Mangam

 

The beautiful fall Reno area weather was one of the highlights of the Convention. The skies were clear and the temperature was in the middle to high 70's all week. Those who attended at the Lake Ridge Golf Course enjoyed the Golf Tournament. The tour to the Nevada State Museum and the Nevada State Railroad Museum was popular with lunch at Red's Old 395 in Carson City. The Dixie II Lake Tahoe Luncheon Cruises were on glass smooth water. 307 attended the Dancing Queen Show at the Eldorado Theater. Virginia City sparkled in the October sun. Top Gun School tours at NAS Fallon were popular with the guys as well as lunch at the Officer's Club. Two coaches made the trip to scenic Truckee, CA, for lunch and shopping at the many boutiques and specialty shops. The Ladies Brunch was well attended. Paul Vandervoort provided soft piano background music for the event. The National Auto Museum was enjoyed by all that attended. The surviving spouses were treated to an afternoon tea in the Presidential Suite. Captain Bill Haug (APA Secretary Treasurer) spoke at the men's business meeting. Retired American Airlines President George Warde spoke at Grey Eagle Night. Mark Twain (MacAvoy Layne) provided down home entertainment on Banquet Night. Room Rates were $62 and 411 attended the Convention.

 

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2006
October 18-30

Royal Caribbean 
"Vision of the Seas"
Doubletree San Pedro Hotel
 San Pedro, CA
President: Martin H. O'Leary
***************
Officers for 2007:
President - Glenn Cribbs
First VP - Art Culver
Second VP - Don Jensen
Secretary - Jim Groves
Treasurer - Bob Hoch

 

  Highlights: Our first-ever Grey Eagles Cruise Convention departed Los Angeles Harbor on Sunday, 22 October with well over a half thousand members, wives and guests for seven days of great fun, magnificently catered meals, five pre-dinner cocktail hours, and outstanding nightly entertainment. We visited the Mexican Riviera making an extended call at Puerto Vallarta, having bypassed Cabo San Lucas and Mazatlan to avoid inclement weather. Two formal dress events aboard ship brought  numerous compliments from other passengers and crew. All Grey Eagles Convention functions  were accomplished on the return leg. Our Convention guest speaker was George Warde, former President of American Airlines. He also addressed our members at the business meeting. Dr. Teena Cahill, noted professional speaker (and wife of Brooks Dyer) spoke at the Ladies function. Starting three days prior to and two days immediately after the cruise, hotel accommodations were available for members at the Doubletree Hotel San Pedro at the Grey Eagle rate of $89. In all, we spent over 730 guest-nights at the hotel and Convention registration and pre-cruise check-in were accomplished there. Bussing was provided to the ship for the 22 October departure and back to the hotel on 29 October. All members and guests were given free parking at the hotel from 18 through 31 October. Convention attendance was 522.  

 

****************************************************************

2005
September 29-October 3

Sheraton Nashville Hotel
Nashville Tennessee
President: Dale Johnson
Convention Chairman:
Don Jensen
***************
Officers for 2006:
President - Martin O’Leary
First VP - Glenn Cribbs
Second VP - Art Culver
Secretary - Jim Groves
Treasurer - Bob Hoch

 

 Highlights: The Grand Ole Opry Show was attended by 294. Grey Eagle Night was held at the Jack Daniels facility, attended by 421. The crowd was treated to a southern barbeque featuring deep fried catfish, pulled pork, and all the trimmings. Beverages were bourbon or iced tea, complimentary. A local band supplied music for the entire evening. Mother nature supplied a fantastic sunset. Options included a tour of the distillery. Cecil Ewell addressed the crowd at the banquet. Captains Hetterman and Hunter addressed the attendees at the business meeting.

 

****************************************************************

2004
October 7-10

Hyatt Regency
Atlanta, Georgia
President:Robert E. Mangam
Convention Chairman:
George W. McKellar
******************
Officers for 2005:
President - Dale Johnson
First VP - Marty O'Leary
SecondVP - Glenn Cribbs
Secretary - Jim Groves III
Treasurer - Bob Hoch

 

Highlights: The performance of "Chicago" in the magnificent Fox Theater, tours to the Lockheed production line, the botanical gardens, CNN/Coke, beautiful antebellum homes. The Grey Eagle Night was celebrated at Stone Mountain Park. The weather cooperated for the spectacular laser light show. Attendance was 347. Mark Hetterman, American Airlines Vice President of Flight and Ralph Hunter, APA President spoke at the business meeting, Mary Raymond was elected to Honorary Life Membership for her many years of exemplary service to the Grey Eagles. Bob Crandall was the featured speaker at the banquet. The convention was dedicated to the memory of those crewmembers lost on 9/11. A collection for the Grey Eagles Foundation raised over $2600. A motion was passed that the Grey Eagles match the contribution, and will bring the total to over $5000. Room rates were $105.00, but drink prices were $6.00 and up. Membership stands at 2965 including surviving spouses.  

 

****************************************************************

-2003
October 9-12

Radisson South Hotel
Minneapolis, Minnesota
President: Herb Dabelow
Convention Chairman:
Joe Lienau
**************
Officers for 2004:
President - Robert Mangam
First VP - Dale Johnson
Second VP - Marty O'Leary
Secretary - Jim Groves III
Treasurer - Bob Hoch

 

HIGHLIGHTS: The Chanhassen Dinner Theater, the riverboat tours on the Mississippi, the fall colors on the leaves and the incredible Indian Summer weather. Attendance was only 322, but those who came had a great time. Grey Eagle Night began with an introduction by Minnesota’s Governor, Tom Pawlenty and finished with the indefatigable and enjoyable Al Casey. Our banquet speaker was Bob Reding, American Airline’s Senior VP, Technical Operations. At the business meeting, American’s new VP of Flight, Mark Hetterman, and APA’s President, John Darrah both gave presentations on the state of the airline. J. D. Moore was elected to Honorary Life Membership for his many years of service. A motion to review the Grey Eagles Bylaws was introduced and a committee will be appointed to accomplish that and present recommendations for changes at the next convention. Room rates were $109.00. Membership stands at 2994, including surviving spouses.

 

****************************************************************

2002
September 20 - 23

Adam’s Mark Hotel
Denver Colorado
President: Jack R. Hinson
Convention Chairman:
Robert H. Malone
****************
Officers for 2003:
President - Herbert L. Dabelow
First VP - Robert E. Mangam

Second VP - Dale K. Johnson
Secretary - James T. Groves III

Treasurer - Robert J. Lefevre

  HIGHLIGHTS: The tour of the Air Force Academy and the Garden of the Gods, The Country
 Dinner Playhouse, as well as the short walks around downtown Denver and the Capitol Buildings. The skies were crystal clear and the temperatures were mild. But most popular were the visits with old friends. With only 394 attendees, everyone had a chance to visit and reminisce to their hearts content. Al Casey spoke on Grey Eagle night and Bob Baker was supposed to be the speaker on Banquet night, but had to cancel due to emergency surgery. The ever popular Cecil Ewell filled in for him. Max Vickers was elected to Honorary Life Membership for his years of service. Room rates were $109.00. Membership stands at 3012, including surviving spouses.

 

****************************************************************

 2001
Planned for September 17 - 20
Hyatt Regency Hotel
Atlanta, Georgia
President: George W. McKellar
Convention Chairman:
Robert E. Mangam
*******************
Officers for 2002:
President - Jack R. Hinson,
First VP - Herbert L. Dabelow

Second VP - Karl W. "Chuck" Nuechterlein,
Secretary - James T. Groves, III
Treasurer - R. J. Lefevre

 

 HIGHLIGHTS: President McKellar along with his Convention Chairman, Robert Mangam, had
 everything in place. All plans were finalized for the Convention. Treasurer, R. J. Lefevre had 264 registration's with 484 Grey Eagles and their ladies planning to attend. Then the tragedies of September 11th.!! During the next couple of days, the President conferred with the Convention Chairman, the Board of Directors and the Executive Board. It soon became apparent that it would be necessary for the first time in 39 years to cancel the Convention. The Hotel and Tour provider concurred and allowed us to cancel with no monetary loss. During the next week this decision was proven to be the correct one. With the restrictions in air travel, the general feelings of sorrow and sadness in our members, it was apparent that there was little desire for a celebration. Since the General Members meeting was also canceled, the President and his Executive Board, along with the Nomination Committee conferred and it was decided to accept the Nomination Committee's proposed Officers for year 2002. Membership now is 2999 including Surviving Spouses. Room rates would have been, $109.00 C. Max Vickers Historian, February 2002.

 

****************************************************************

2000
September 4-6

Hyatt River Walk Hotel
San Antonio, Texas
President: R. Gary Lopp
Convention Chairman:
Thomas C. Linnevers
*****************
Officers for 2001:
President - George W. McKellar

First VP - Jack Hinson
Second VP - Herbert Dabelow
Secretary - James T. Groves III
Treasurer - Pepe Lefevre

 

  HIGHLIGHTS: The River Walk and the Alamo. Boat tours of the River, the short walk to the Alamo and for many of the Grey Eagles, a visit to their roots, the Military and Air Force bases. Tours of the Missions and the beautiful Hill Country were extremely popular as well. The weather  was hot, but the Hotel was cool and many an hour was spent there, visiting with old friends and reminiscing. On Grey Eagle night, NASA Astronaut, Colonel USAF (Ret.), John E. Blaha gave us a fascinating report of his mission aboard the Russian Space station, MIR. He reported on how he trained for the mission and of his life on board. Robert H. Malone was elected to a well deserved Honorary Life Membership. Frank Nehlig stepped down as Scribe after serving us for 11 years, Barry Syrett will take over. Membership is now 2972, including Surviving Spouses. Room rate, $99.00. Attendance had been planned for 800, however with numerous late cancellations and no show's, only 558 attended.

*******************************************************************************************************************************

​1999
September 9-11, Hyatt Regency Crystal City Hotel Arlington Virginia
President: Robert H. Malone
Convention Chairman: Jack R. Hinson
HIGHLIGHTS: The Grey Eagles decided to close out the Century, the decade and the old year of 1999 by going
right to the top, so it was HELLO Washington, D.C. Tours were plentiful and gave everyone a chance to see the
details of our government nerve center. The popular Garber Museum, Mount Vernon and the lighted night tour of
the monuments were among the best. Continuing the tradition started in Montreal, a high tea in the Presidential
Suite was held for the attending 35 surviving spouses. The convention ran smoothly with many compliments and
short lines due to the efforts of a host of workers headed by Jack and Ruthie Hinson.
CEO Don Carty, chartered an Executive Jet to fly to the convention, just in time to be our banquet night speaker.
Grey Eagle night went over big with Al Casey and Jack Jackson.
Pepe Lefevre our good treasurer, was elected to Honorary Life Membership. Ms. Sue Pyle was elected to
Associate Membership. Secretary, Max Vickers announced that he will be stepping down at the Convention next
year. As ever a good manager, he is training a replacement. This will complete 13 years Max has given to the Grey
Eagles, including 10 as Secretary. Dues were raised $5 dollars for active and retired pilots and now stand at $30
and $25 annually. Officers elected for year 2000 are: President, Gary Lopp, 1st. Vice President, George McKellar,
2nd. Vice President, Jack Hinson, Treasurer, Pepe Lefevre, Secretary, Max Vickers, . Bob Hoch remains as
Membership Chairman. Our membership now 2441 plus 433 surviving spouses.
Total Convention attendance 871, the largest ever. Room rate, $90.00
=================================================================================
1998
September 9-11, Doubletree Hotel, Bellevue Washington
President: John D. Moore
Convention Chairman: Barry Syrett
HIGHLIGHTS: The big activity for this convention was the tour through the Boeing aircraft complex and seeing
the construction details of the Boeing 777, as well as the other aircraft being manufactured for airlines around the
world. The tour to Kiana Lodge gave us a delightful overview of the great Northwest. At the banquet, retired AMR
Chairman, Bob Crandall, relived the exciting experiences in sailing his "retirement" boat across the Atlantic to the
U.S. George W. McKellar was elected second Vice President. Donald G. Craig steps down and Robert G. Hoch, Jr.
takes over as the Membership Chairman. Max Vickers was elected to a Special Recognition Membership.
Attendance 805, one of the largest yet. Membership is now 2789, including Surviving Spouses. Room rate: $85.00.
Banquet charge: $44.00 Drinks: $3.75 Wine: $3.75
=================================================================================
1997
September 24-26, Le Centre Sheraton Hotel, Montreal Canada
President: Kenneth Phelps
Convention Chairman: R. Gary Lopp
HIGHLIGHTS: Our timing to visit Montreal was right on target, as the countryside was beautiful. The city lights
were a cluster of diamonds as viewed from our 37 floor Hotel. This is our second convention outside the United
States. We were in Toronto in 1973 with C. R. Smith as the keynote speaker. That was his last convention with us.
Money problems caused many calculations in our favor as the Canadian dollar was worth about 72 cents. One
disappointment: There was no discount from U.S. prices for home grown Canadian whiskey! The many tours kept
our people busy, including the magnificent Notre Dame Cathedral, the fall foliage in the Laurentians, a visit to a
complete underground city and a cruise on the St. Lawrence River. Robert E. Dean was elected as Honorary Life
Member. R. Gary Lopp was elected as 2nd. Vice President. AMR Chairman, Robert Crandall was the speaker at
the banquet. There’s something about being present at our [U. S.] border that gives you a strong dose of patriotism.
The lure of a different country outweighed the difficulty in travel as the attendance topped out at a robust 757
attendees! Membership 2662, including Surviving Spouses. Room rate: U. S. dollars $76.00
=================================================================================
1996
October 4-6, Hyatt Regency Hotel, Irvine, CA
President: Don Allen
Convention Chairman: Kenneth Phelps
HIGHLIGHTS: Grey Eagle night speaker was former AA President Al Casey, who delighted everyone with his
humor and wit. Departing from past tradition for a "free" Grey Eagle night a charge is now made which is healthy
for our treasury and results in upgraded dinners. Vice President and Chief Pilot Cecil Ewell charmed all the pilots
with his warm remarks at the business meeting. Our popular scribe, Frank Nehlig was elected as Honorary Life
Member. AMR Chairman, Bob Crandall was the speaker at the banquet. Tours covered the Nixon Library, Crystal
Cathedral, Mission San Juan Capistrano, The San Diego Aeronautical museum, as well as special boat tours to
Catalina Island. At the Imax theater, Grey Eagle Pop Warner, spoke to about 200 young students on the duties and
rigors of the early Air Mail pilots. Bob Malone was elected 2nd. Vice President. Membership stands at 2163, plus
356 widows, whom we never want to forget.
Convention attendance 680 Hotel rooms, $69.00 Wine $4.00 Cocktails $3.75
=================================================================================
1995
October 13-15, Wyndham Hotel, Chicago, IL
President: Bob Lagerstrom
Convention Chairman: Herb Dabelow
HIGHLIGHTS: An excellent hotel with a 12 story atrium. Grey Eagle night speaker, Jim Wetherbee, Astronaut,
(son of Grey Eagle Dan Wetherbee) He has flown three missions, one as commander and is Deputy Director of the
Houston Space Center. Tours of the Lake front, the Monet exhibit, Grey Eagle, John Teerling's nursery, (shipping
plants all over the world) and a city tour with luncheon at Berghoffs! Banquet night, Bob Crandall gave a very
upbeat speech on American Airlines future. Grey Eagle, Cecil Ewell, was elected to Honorary Life membership.
At the business meeting the Treasurer announced that over 500 new Grey Eagles had been recruited in the past
three years, a record. Mary S. Raymond announced that she was retiring from American, but would stay on as the
AAL/Grey Eagle Coordinator. John D. Moore moved from Treasurer to 2nd. Vice President, Robert J. (Pepe)
Lefevre was elected to fill the Treasurers position and Max Vickers elected to Secretary.
Hotel rates $67.00. Drinks $3.75. Membership 2066. Attendance 561.
=================================================================================
1994
October 8-10, Marriott Hotel, New Orleans, LA
President: Tom Eanes
Convention Chairman: Joe Gumber
HIGHLIGHTS: Swamp tours, paddle wheel boat cruise and tours of the city. The hotel hosted the Grey Eagle
night cocktail party. Al Casey made a short speech with Jack Jackson the main speaker. Bob Crandall spoke at the
banquet. AA Vice President, Bob Baker was elected to Grey Eagle Honorary Life membership for his outstanding
service to the Grey Eagles. He also was very instrumental in making possible the DC3 flight from Tulsa to
Dallas/Fort Worth. Ken Phelps was elected as 2nd. Vice President.
Hotel rate $65.00 Attendance 791.
=================================================================================
1993
October 16-18, Worthington Hotel, Fort Worth, TX
President: Bill Bettwy
Convention Chairman: Jack Hinson
HIGHLIGHTS: Grey Eagle night speaker was Bob Serling. Western theme with many jeans and cowboy hats seen.
Duke Ledbetter honored as the oldest Grey Eagle at age 90. Tours to C. R. Smith museum, DC3 Flagship
Knoxville, Flight Academy with time in the flight simulators for Grey Eagles and wives. Fran Fosdick elected to
Honorary Life membership for his outstanding efforts in raising the money for Flagship Knoxville. Bob Crandall
was the banquet speaker. Don Allen was elected 2nd. Vice President.
Hotel rate $65.00. Attendance 856.
=================================================================================
1992
October 22-24, Fairmont Hotel, San Jose, CA
President: Cort Dickinson
Convention Chairman: Lloyd McBeth
HIGHLIGHTS: Bob Dean, Treasurer and Max Vickers, Secretary, resigned after five years of service and were
given Golden Eagles (made by Gracie O'Connell specially for them) in appreciation of their work. They gave a
very humorous account of their activities during their five years of service. Otto Becker was voted in as an
Honorary Member and given our appreciation for his special work on the DC3 project. Bryce McCormick was
given the Grey Eagles "Special Recognition Award," for his many years of service to the Grey Eagles along with
his work on the DC3 project. This was the third time in the history of the Grey Eagles this award has been given.
Bob Lagerstrom was elected 2nd. Vice President, Jack Webb as Secretary and John D. Moore as Treasurer. Al
Casey was the speaker on Grey Eagle night, Bob Crandall was the speaker at the banquet. The ladies luncheon was
entertained by a Barber Shop Chorus. Hotel rate $62. Attendance 548.
=================================================================================
1991
October 28-30, Harrah's Hotel, Reno, NV
President: Fran Fosdick
Convention Chairman: Martin Gellart
HIGHLIGHTS: Tom Eanes joined the team as 2nd. Vice President. Nick O'Connell was honored for his long
service to the Grey Eagles in wearing many different "caps". He also was awarded the Grey Eagle "Special
Recognition Award." Only the second one that has ever been given. Elmer Heckel was honored with an Honorary
Life membership for his work. John Reddington was voted in as a Associate member. Otto Becker and Bryce
McCormick were given special awards for their excellent work in locating and buying the Grey Eagle DC 3. The
Grey Eagles under President Fosdick raised $142,000 for the purchase. The Flagship Knoxville, DC 3 will be
donated to the C. R. Smith museum. The ladies were treated to a demonstration of "The Life of a Show Girl."
=================================================================================
1990
November 2-4, Sheraton Phoenix Hotel, Phoenix, AZ
President: Joe Gumber
Convention Chairman: Bob Malone
HIGHLIGHTS: Jim Stanford honored as a Honorary Life member. A special welcome to old timers, Duke
Ledbetter and Bill Keasler. Robert Crandall was the banquet speaker. Bud Ehman resigned his position as Grey
Eagle 1st. Vice President. Cort Dickenson was voted in as the new 1st. Vice President. Total Grey Eagle
membership now 1503. Attendance was 705, the highest ever. Hotel rate $45.00.
=================================================================================
1989
October 20-22, North Raleigh Hilton Hotel, Raleigh, NC
President: Bob Wilson
Convention Chairman: Jack Clark
HIGHLIGHTS: The Convention was dedicated to C. R. Smith. Robert Crandall, was the banquet speaker. Tours of
Duke University. Beautiful eastern foliage and fall colors. Grey Eagle night, big 12 piece band with dancing. Total
cost of the convention was $29,738. 1989 gross income $82,618, including dues, sale of various Grey Eagle items,
convention and APA participation. Grey Eagle membership now 1415.
Hotel rate $49. Attendance 602.
=================================================================================
1988
October 24-26, Harrah's Hotel, Reno, NV
President: Martin Gellart
Convention Chairman: Bryce McCormick
HIGHLIGHTS: Chick Luna voted to Honorary Life membership posthumously. Jack Jackson voted in as
Associate member. Tours to Virginia City and Lake Tahoe. Beautiful, sunny, Fall weather. Hotel facilities were
outstanding. Kiwis, Boots Hogate and Barbara Holder put on a hilarious skit as two witches.
=================================================================================
1987
October 29-31, Excelsior Hotel, Little Rock, AR
President: Tony DeSalvo
Convention Chairman: Bell Bettwy
HIGHLIGHTS: Through the courtesy of the Arkansas Aviation Society, a Command-Aire, (an open cockpit
biplane made in Little Rock,) was dismantled, then reassembled and set up in the entrance court area of the hotel.
Historical, City and river tours on the Arkansas River. Banquet speaker was Robert Crandall. The Honorable
William Clinton, Governor of Arkansas, made a special visit to welcome the Grey Eagles to Arkansas and
presented an Arkansas Travelers Certificate to Bob Crandall. The Governor also issued a proclamation honoring
the Grey Eagles by declaring the week of October 25-31, Arkansas Aviation history Week. A silver Fox fur jacket
was the door prize at the ladies luncheon., entertained by Willie Oates. Grey Eagle night, Ernie Ford entertained
accompanied by Jim Stanford on his head-high, double-base fiddle along with his seven piece orchestra, aptly
called "The Retreads," along with a performance by the Pine Bluff High School "Zebra Prancers". Joe Gumber was
elected 2nd. Vice President Max Vickers was elected as Secretary and Bob Dean as Treasurer.
(Room rate $45.) Attendance 556
=================================================================================
1986
September 25-27, Princess Kaiulani Hotel, Honolulu, HI
President: Elton Leach
Convention Chairman: Nick O'Connell
HIGHLIGHTS: Grey Eagle night on the lawn of the Sheraton Hotel, a terrific Polynesian show at the Ala Moana
Hotel. All sports activities canceled - rain - rain - rain! Mary Sullivan checked in as Mrs. John Raymond. Pearl
harbor cruise, also a twilight dinner cruise. President Crandall was a guest. Jack Jackson entertained. Bob Wilson
elected 2nd. Vice President
Hotel $39. Attendance 502.
=================================================================================
1985
September 27-29, Westin Hotel, Denver, CO
President: Chuck Shafer
Convention Chairmen: Jim Pardee & Vince O'Toole
HIGHLIGHTS: First two days temperature 74 deg.; Thursday, 8" of snow, temperature of 17 deg. Tours of the Air
Force Academy, Coors Brewery and the Colorado nation Park. 40 senior pilots visited the North American Air
Defense Command in the interior depths of Cheyenne mountain near Colorado Springs. Ladies luncheon was
entertained with a Hat Show. Rooms $40.00, coffee $1.25, cocktails $3.00 Mary Sullivan voted in as an Associate
member.
=================================================================================
1984
September 13-15, The Pointe Resort, Phoenix, AZ
President: George Becker
Convention Chairman: Joe Sittinger
HIGHLIGHTS: Grey Eagle night speaker was Robert Serling; for the banquet, comedian Tommy Richards.
George Tompkins was elected Secretary. Hotel rate $40.00, every room a suite, free daily "Happy hour" and free
breakfast. Attendance 601.
=================================================================================
1983
September 16-18, Marriott Hotel, Anaheim, CA
President: Bryce McCormick
Convention Chairman: Kent Campbell
HIGHLIGHTS: Tours of the Queen Mary and the Spruce goose. Grey Eagle night at a secluded area of Knott's
Berry Farm.
=================================================================================
1982
October 28-30, Princess Kaiulani Hotel, Honolulu, HI
President: Nick O'Connell
Convention Chairman: Elton Leach
HIGHLIGHTS: Tours of the Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor and the Polynesian Cultural center.
Room rate $38.00.
=================================================================================
1981
October 8-10, Americana Hotel, Fort Worth, TX
President: Fred Illston
Convention Chairman: Jack Calloway
HIGHLIGHTS: Grey Eagle night at a dude ranch. Ernie Ford entertained us. Ray Ryan was elected Treasurer. C.
R. Smith attended the banquet, (his last visit with us.)
=================================================================================
1980
September 13-15, The Pointe Resort, Scottsdale, AZ
President: Walt Moran
Convention Chairman: Bill McCormick
HIGHLIGHTS: Due to Moran's illness, Fred Illston took over. Hotel rates $38.00, including free drinks at "Happy
hour" and a free breakfast. President Crandall was the speaker.
=================================================================================
1979
October 18-20, Arlington Hotel, Hot Springs, AR
President: Bill McCormick
Convention Chairman: George Becker
HIGHLIGHTS: Open beer bar in the hotel lounge throughout the convention. Grey Eagle night, wine and cheese
on the mountain side terrace. Entertainment by Joe Adleman, ex-Police captain, was hilarious. Banquet speaker, Al
Casey. Nick O'Connell was voted to Honorary Life membership. Due to Hot Springs accessibility, the attendance
was reduced to 370. total cost of the convention -$8,074. Mary Sullivan became American Airlines Coordinator.
=================================================================================
1978
September 21-23, Opryland, Nashville, TN
President: Jim Stanford
Convention Chairman: Jim Stanford
HIGHLIGHTS: Tours to the Hermitage, Jesse Stalling's ranch. Tennessee walking horse demonstration. Grey
Eagle night all member occupied the balcony of the Opryland Opryhouse while Ernie Ford gave the program and
had all Grey Eagles stand in recognition. Paul Clough was elected Secretary. Attendance 692.
=================================================================================
1977
October 24-26, Aladdin Hotel, Las Vegas, NV
President: Dwight McMillen
Convention Chairman: Bill McCormick
HIGHLIGHTS: speaker was stuttering Sam on Grey Eagle night. Uncle Milt Coppage joined the belly dancers.
Toured Nellis Air Force base and Boulder Dam.
=================================================================================
1976
October 23-25, Del Coronado Hotel, San Diego, CA
President: Milt Coppage
Convention Chairman: Owen Foringer
HIGHLIGHTS: Octoberfest. Speaker was Cal Worthington. Free beer mugs, dancing and ending with real
fireworks.
=================================================================================
1975
November 13-15, Rivera Hotel, Palm Springs, CA
President: Jack Gibson
Convention Chairman: Bryce McCormick
HIGHLIGHTS: Grey Eagle night held at the Thunderbird Golf Club, courtesy of Director Harold Ames, with
Mexican food. Ernie Ford entertained along with Phil Harris. Ernie also sang with a quartet of pilots dressed as
World War I aviators. Tours to on the Tram ride up Mount San Jacinto, $1.75. Kay Hansen retired from American
Airlines but continued serving on the Site Selection Committee. Attendance 525.
=================================================================================
1974
October 24-26, Sheraton Hotel, Scottsdale, AZ
President: Bert Bruce
Convention Chairman: Bill McCormick
HIGHLIGHTS: Grey Eagle night held at Rawhide ranch. Bill McCormick had signs on the stores and buildings
such as - Bert Bruce, Town Sheriff; Chick Luna, Laundromat; Kay Hansen Brothel; Dave Little Printing Press and
Paul Carpenter Black Smith. Ernie Ford entertained and Al Casey was the banquet speaker. Attendance 536.
=================================================================================
1973
September 20-22, York Hotel, Toronto, Canada
President: Bill Person
Convention Chairman: Bill Person
HIGHLIGHTS: Person is our youngest President. Grey Eagle night was spent cruising on Lake Erie. C. R. Smith
was the speaker, one of his last visits with the Grey Eagles.
Attendance 400.
=================================================================================
1972
October 11-13, Ala Moana Hotel, Honolulu, HI
President: Chick Luna
Convention Chairman: Jack Keller
HIGHLIGHTS: Grey Eagle night held at Fort DeRussy, a glamorous sunset evening with Hawaiian leis, shirts and
muumuus, entertained by Ernie Ford. At the banquet cocktail hour, Ernie Ford sang with Kay Starr. Donald Lloyd
Jones was the speaker and announced that Mc Donnell Douglas would bear all expenses of Bryce McCormick's
cargo door blowout near Detroit. Bryce received a standing ovation. (Room rate $10.00) Attendance 500.
=================================================================================
1971
September 23-25, Del Coronado Hotel, San Diego, CA
President: Harry Clark
Convention Chairman: Joe Anderson
HIGHLIGHTS: Harry Clark died and Chick Luna took over for him. Grey Eagle night was held in the picnic area
of the San Diego Zoo. Convention attendance 209. Grey eagle membership 754.
=================================================================================
1970
October 15-17, Newporter Hotel, Newport Beach, CA
President: Ham Smith
Convention Chairman: Cecil Hefner
HIGHLIGHTS: Tour of the Douglas Aerospace facility. Grey Eagle night in Bomer Canyon. Free drinks and
barbecue. President George Spater was the speaker at the banquet. Attendance 369. Membership 688.
=================================================================================
1969
November 6-8, Mountain Shadows Resort, Scottsdale, AZ
President: Cecil Hefner
Convention Chairman: Dwight McMillen
HIGHLIGHTS: Ernie Ford sang at the Grey Eagles' night at Reata Pass and so endeared himself to our members
that we voted him in as an Associate member and presented him with a GE jacket at the banquet. Tours to Heard
Museum, Jerome, Oak Creek Canyon, Montezuma's Castle and Frank Lloyd Wright's Taliesen West. Ladies
brunch with Chabela, the well known artist. Ernie Gann flew his own private plane from Friday Harbor, WA, to
enjoy his first Grey Eagle convention. Bill Person was elected Treasurer. Membership 629.
=================================================================================
1968
October 24-25, Inn of the Six Flags, Fort Worth, TX
President: Sheldon Shoff
Convention Chairman: Jim Hay
HIGHLIGHTS: A cattle auction in Fort Worth, the ladies toured Nieman Marcus while the men toured the Bell
Helicopter plant and Ling Temco Vought. We all went to Stormy Manghams's airport for a fantastic airshow and
Texas barbecue. Fred Chambers made a free fall parachute jump. Ham Smith was elected Treasurer.
Attendance: 398. Membership: 571.
=================================================================================
1967
October 19-21, Del Coronado Hotel, San Diego, CA
President: Sheldon Shoff
Convention Chairman: Sheldon Shoff
HIGHLIGHTS: Tour of the aircraft carrier Ticonderoga, a hair-raising boat ride (we got lost in the fog) on the
Marietta to the other side of the bay where we had our Grey Eagle dinner. At the banquet, Bob Considine narrated
an American Airlines film of our MAC operation to Viet Nam. The San Diego Kiwis presented a skit.
Attendance 295. Membership 487.
=================================================================================
1966
September 23-25, Mayflower Hotel, Washington, DC
President: Paul Carpenter
Convention Chairman: Paul Carpenter
HIGHLIGHTS: The Marine Sunset Parade, courtesy of General Karl Day, also a Grey Eagle. The boat trip on the
Potomac with a visit to George Washington's home at Mount Vernon. President Carpenter took a short vacation in
the hospital with an acute attack of pancreatic but was able to get out in time for the banquet. Bob Serling was the
guest speaker at the banquet and an excellent skit by the Washington Kiwis was presented. Grey Eagle caps were
given to all members, courtesy of C. R. Smith. Attendance 150. Membership 415.
=================================================================================
1965
October 28-30, Executive House, Scottsdale, AZ
President Duke Ledbetter
Convention Chairman Bill Gilmore
HIGHLIGHTS: Desert Barbecue, Indian dances, fried bread. Barry Goldwater as the guest speaker on the evening
of the 30th. Over 237 Grey Eagles and wives attended this convention.
(All the above information was supplied by Duke Ledbetter.)
=================================================================================
1964
November 24-26, Statler-Hilton Hotel, Boston, MA
President: Paul Carpenter
Convention Chairman: Duke Ledbetter
HIGHLIGHTS: Floating Clam Bake while cruising the Boston harbor. 80 Grey Eagles and 63 GE wives attended
this convention. Marion Sadler was the guest speaker.
(Note: Rooms $9 Sgl., $14 Dbl.) Attendance 143.
=================================================================================
1963
October 24-26, Palace Hotel, San Francisco, CA
President: Howard H. West
Convention Chairman: Duke Ledbetter
HIGHLIGHTS: Free tour of San Francisco Bay by boat. First reception and cocktail party by American Airlines
for the Grey Eagles, hosted by Marion Sadler. Guest speaker at the banquet on the 26th. was William Littlewood.
(Note: Rooms $10 Sgl., $14 Dbl.) Grey Eagle Membership 220.
=================================================================================
THE FIRST GREY EAGLE CONVENTION
1962
November 15-17, Sheraton Hotel, Chicago, IL
President: W. H. Proctor
Convention Chairman: W. H. Proctor
Attendance 67. Membership 162.
HIGHLIGHTS: Formation of Grey Eagle by-laws. Harold Ames (Director, American Airlines) gave a cocktail
party for entire convention, 38 Grey Eagles and 17 wives, at the Prudential Plaza. C. R. Smith was the guest
speaker at the banquet on the evening of 17th. (Note: Room rates $8.85 Sgl., $14.00 Dbl. Mixed drinks 65 cents.)
Quotes from C. R. Smith's speech:
"We find that in the 'past the middle' years of life we do not form new friendships with the ease of our more
youthful years and new friends do not wear as well; they seem more like acquaintances."
"We hold up the fingers to count our real friends, all fingers may not be up. The truth of the matter is that good
men are scarce and good friends hard to come by."
"The Village advice was 'to stick by the home town girls'. It is good advice for us as well. Grey Eagles has many
worthy purposes but none more worthy than to encourage good men to continue their friendships and to enjoy
them."