|2013 USMC Reunion / 2013_USMC_Reunion_00
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The reunion was held in Jax Beach and hosted by Lee Ahr and Linda Reinhard. May 16-19th. Attending were: Bruce & Louise Wagner, Don & Jacque Flattem, Don Stone, Harold (Jon) Carrow, Herb Hinchliffe, Jerry Stephenson, Lee Ahr & Linda Reinhard, Randolph (Fuzzy) & Cindy Linck, Ray & Sandee Greene, Rick & Jan Swan, RJ & Mickey Zike, Steve & Carolyn Lehmann.
Thursday we met at the Hampton Inn - Oceanside to get reacquainted. Then it was off to the first of several dining extravaganzas. Pizza at the Mellow Mushroom. It was loud, it was great food, beer and drinks and we sang the “Marines’ Hymn” to a room of pizza eaters.
Friday morning we boarded a bus to Mayport Naval Station, home to the Navy’s 4th Fleet. There we met ET3 Michelle Maltese, our base guide, attended a Memorial Service for the USS Stark, got a quick tour of the base, and lunched at the Mayport Conference Center. We then traveled to the Boat Basin where we boarded the USS The Sullivans, a guided missile destroyer stationed in Mayport. Our 3 hour tour, above and below decks, included the Bridge, galley, engine room, Combat Information Center, aft deck and forecastle. We were all impressed with the knowledge and professionalism of the ship’s Officers and sailors, and the defense capabilities of this modern Navy ship. For dinner we carpooled to MoJo’s BBQ and Blues Bar for more drinks and food (love those Burnt Ends). Then happy and tired from our day of adventures, we headed back to the hotel for a nightcap.
On Saturday we travelled south to St. Augustine, the oldest city in the US. Riding the Red Trolley gave us an overview of the ancient structures and history of this quaint town. We toured the Castillo de San Marcos, a Spanish fort, saw a live firing of one of the old cannons, took group photos, and explored. For lunch we walked just two blocks to Meehan’s Irish Pub for beer, drinks and sandwiches. Then everyone was on their own for sightseeing, shopping or just strolling around this old city. Back in Jax Beach we dined at The Salt Life Food Shack. After a short wait we enjoyed wonderful, fresh seafood and great service.
On our last night at the hotel, we met in the bar for final drinks and to plan next years reunion. Jerry Stephenson volunteered to host and we all agreed on Seattle, Washington as the site, during AUGUST. I am looking forward to it already. Once more we sang “Our Hymn”, hugged all around and disbanded until next year.
Linda and I put our best effort into making it an enjoyable time for all. Thanks to Rick Swan for promoting us on his web site, all the Sailors at Mayport for an unforgettable day, and most of all I want to thank those who attended the reunion. Always remember “It’s not the places we see or the things we do, it is the friends with whom we travel.” You are my best friends and True Brothers.
See you all next year, bring a friend.