Hi folks,

We had a good OBA meeting yesterday (1/18/03) in the VFM conference room. We had hoped to have the meeting in our Ready Room, but the weather didn’t allow us to get the ceiling painted so we used the conference room.

Fourteen people attended yesterday. Tim Sikorski updated us on the Bronco Fest IV planning. We will once again use the Clarion Hotel in downtown Fort Worth. Everyone likes the location and price. The Clarion is in the second year of renovations so it should be an improvement over BF III. You will be hear a lot more about that over the next few months.

We will be sending part of our art collection to the local FAA headquarters as part of a revolving aviation art exhibit for the Centennial of Flight. Ron Fix plans to start moving the collection to the Ready Room as soon as possible. We are still looking for a Grand Opening at Founders Day this year.

Jack Thompson and a couple of the Lockheed restoration crew briefed us on the progress with the mockup. To date, they have put over 2,000 hours into the restoration effort. Friday of this week the tails and horizontal stab will be returning to VFM. The fuselage will remain at Lockheed for more work. Still a lot of work to be done, but we have come a long way since receiving the mockup.

Ray Janes was unable to provide us with the 19 TASS brief due to a family emergency. I gave a quick overview on the 19th during its Cambodian operations from 1970 to 1973. We also did a little show and tell with items from the collection such as an original Cambodian flag, patches, books, Crash’s party suit and helmet bag and such. We also all watched “The Rustic Story.”, all against the backdrop of our combat loss maps. Somewhere along there we also had pizza.

All in all, a good meeting and we gained two new members, Keith Dunn and Bill Spidle. Welcome Aboard gents!

Our next regularly scheduled meeting will be February 15th and will feature Tim Sikorski and a brief on the VAL-4 Black Ponies.

Seeya then,

Jim Hodgson
OBA Executive Director