Col. George S. Howard
RETIREE BULLETIN - 4 – 89
Vi & Frank Lockwood: Gradually getting rid of boxes and settling in Florida. Frank plans on many happy hours on the golf course. Vi enjoying the sun, swimming and Florida living. Both are fast becoming Floridians.
Blanche & Bob Allee: Both doing fine; Bob continuing his golf; he and Frank Lookwood live in the same area and play golf together occasionally.
Irene & Lou Anderson: Lew reports his schedule in Boardman, Ohio is filled this year. However, when ever he gets 1½ weeks free, they head for their Ft Myer Beach home on the Gulf Coast of Florida.
Ann & Joe Lanzillotti: Just to let you know what I've been up to, four (4) years ago I had a four (4) way heart bypass and am doing fine, Joe has written. I stay busy working and keeping up the houses Ann and I own , and of course find time for fishing twice a week. I have a family choir which sings at our church, so I keep busy with arranging, composing, directing and playing with them. We have sixteen (16) grandchildren now with one on the way. Ann has decided to renew her education and is working on her master's degree at Loyola University out of New Orleans. God willing, Ann and I will try to attend the next reunion.
Betty & Ross Whitehead: On the road with Betty & Ross and their 35 foot Winnebago motor home; received a card from Alaska where they say they made it to Denali National Park. Saw over 21 Grizzly Bears, many Dall Sheep and Caribou. Stayed at Eielson AFB, Fam Camp near Fairbanks. Have taken four (4) rolls of VCR film so far, going to Anchorage, Elmendorf AFB, Seward, Homer, Valdez and back thru Yukon and Alberta, Canada. Have taken several Glacier tours. This is "Big Country" and wild. Saw Mt McKinley on a clear day - TERRIFIC!
Renee & Arnold D. Gabriel: CONGRATULATIONS are in order twice for these two: 1) Gabe received a well deserved Honorary Doctor of Music Degree from his Alma Mater, Ithaca College, NY; 2) they now have 7 grandchildren.
Brenda & Ken Grasley: Welcome to two new members of our society, Brenda and Ken Grasley. Ken plays in the show band at Disney World and also does musical arrangements for the band.
Willa & Benny, Knudsen: Benny, our number three (3) Full Colonel from the USAF music career field, retired from the USAF on 27 Jun 89. We welcome Willa & Benny to our society and wish them continued success in his new career as Employee Activities Director for USAA-the job entails party organizer, discount tickets, Director of the USAA Choral group.
Arvilla & Harold Waite: We don't walk much, but we do swim in our pool for exercise. Arvilla bought me an electric typewriter for my 81st birthday, so I put it to good use by bringing you up to date on our activities. We don't take long trips anymore, but go with our Senior's Club on mini trips - Hialeah & Calder Race Tracks, theaters and concerts. Main hobby is playing bridge. We are celebrating my birthday with a mini trip to Bimini with a few friends on a day cruise Saturday 17 Jun 89.
Gertrude & Gene Dieter: Our winter in Florida was great this year and the weather never better. It is always good to visit and be near our younger son who lives at Flagler Beach, Fl. We are leaving NH again for a short flying trip to AZ to visit our older son. The fishing has been fairly good this year, the few times I've had time to go.
Doris & Fred Kepner: Things are going along smoothly here - the musical activity is sufficient to keep us involved in the life we love, and there are always those challenges out there - regardless of ever-increasing age.
WILLIAM EDWIN BLAKEWELL
Born Erwin, SD October 23, 1914
Died Sun City, CA June 6, 1989
Riverside National Cemetery, Riverside, CA
Eulogy Read by
CWO Jim McMillen, USAF(Ret)
Today we come here to pay our respects to our friend Bill Blakewell and to offer our condolences to his wife and family. All of us are saddened by his death, yet we know that he rests in peace, having endured a difficult illness. I know that Bill would not want us to be sad or mournful and so it is in that sprit that I say a few words about him and the happiness he brought us.
Bill was born on October 23, 1914 and grew up in Irwin, South Dakota. He joined the 4th Cavalry Band in Sturgis, SD in 1933. He transferred to the Army Air Force in 1941 and joined the Ft Douglas Band in Salt Lake City, UT. He was an accomplished Clarinetist and Saxophonist. He was appointed Warrant Officer Bandleader in 1953 and served in that position until his retirement in 1963.
I was privileged to be his close friend for 43 years. In those years there was never a harsh word between us. He was my mentor and most of what I learned regarding how to be a good military bandsman and bandleader I learned either directly from him or by the example he set. He never regarded himself to be anything more than an average musician and leader, yet those who knew him respected him for being much more than that. He set very high personal standards of integrity, honesty, dedication and loyalty, yet he was basically a humble and gentle man who never held a grudge. He never asked any thing of others that he couldn't or wouldn't do himself. He recognized all of these qualities in other people and went out of his way to give them credit for their accomplishments, seldom taking any credit for himself.
Bill's personal life was no less exemplary. In all that he did he was never mediocre. Bill loved being outdoors and especially loved fishing, hunting and golfing. We spent many good times together and he seemed to be the happiest when we were cold, wet, and miserable, catching fish from a small mountain stream or simply watching ducks and geese landing in a pond. He had a great regard for nature and received much contentment from her.
Bill was a loving and caring husband and father and completely devoted to Celona. They were married 54 years. He often commented to me that he wouldn't know what to do without her. I believe that his only sadness in dying was in having to be away from her and their family. Celona, Sheryl, Frank and Alicia, we all know how much you will miss him and we share your loss. He generously shared his family life with those of us who were close to him. Louise and I, and our family, feel a special relationship with you and your family. We are never more delighted and comfortable that when we visit in each other’s homes or travel and camp out together. Our memories are rich with the wonderful times we spent together. We will miss them very much now that he is gone but we are thankful for the times we had with him.
Bill was a very private man regarding his relationship with our Lord. He led a full, vigorous and joyful life and often praised and thanked the Lord for his blessings. He became ever closer to God in his final days and professed his belief that he was saved by our Lord Jesus Christ. He is now at peace, with his heavenly Father and we have our loving memories of him along with the hope and promise that we will be with him again soon.
God rest your soul Bill Blakewell and His peace be with you.
ROBERT JOSEPH DUNN
March 15, 1923 - June 25, 1989
Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, VA
On 25 Jun 89, CWO Robert J. Dunn died at Andrews AFB, MD, Hospital. Full military honors were rendered by musicians of The USAF Band, The US Navy Band and The US Marine Band of Washington, D.C.
When Colonel George S. Howard first became Chief of Bands & Music of the US Air Force, he made an inspection tour of each of the 87 bands. Bob was director of one of those units. After spending some time with Bob, the colonel was greatly impressed with his promotional and public relations ideas, and invited him to become a member of his Public Relations staff in Washington, D.C. Bobs understanding of the music requirements of the various groups, plus his knowledge of public relations and his friendly personality, made him an ideal promoter. He became invaluable to the USAF Band program in that capacity and was never again assigned to a band director position.
When he retired from the USAF, he became tour director for the US Marine Band as well as for the US Navy Band of Washington, D.C. He was equally successful in that position.
The US Navy Band rendered their final musical salute outside the Bolling AFB, Chapel. While a String Ensemble from the US Marine Band took part in the ceremonies in his honor, inside the Chapel. The USAF Band and a Piper (Col Blair) paid their final tribute at the grave side in Arlington National Cemetery. Honors such as these are usually reserved for General Officers; however, in recognition and appreciation of this unique, dedicated professional, the musical units volunteered their services.
Bob made thousands of friends around the world and will be missed by them all.