George & Joan (Mastronardi * 1965) Reilly

 

Joan and I grew up next door to each other on Cornell Lane , the scene of monster parties at Sharon Ward's house. Joan graduated in 1965.  George graduated from Chaminade in 1960. We got married at Our Lady of Mercy in April 1969 and moved to Tappan..then Ridgefield ...and then Bayonne . 

 

Parris Island , South Carolina * San Diego , California * Atlanta , Georgia

Oklahoma City , Oklahoma * North Carolina * South Carolina * Tenessee * South Dakota

Dallas / Fort Worth , TX (Including a trip to Itasca - Home of the Whompus Cats) * Bridgeport

California - San Francisco * Redding

Japan - Iwakuni, Hiroshima , Tokoyama, Yokohama , Tokyo , Miyajima,

Okinawa * Hawaii * Subic Bay, Phillipines * Taiwan * Puerto Rico * Trinidad & Tobago

Spain * Mexico - Tijuana , Tecate, Puerto Vallarta , Ixtapa, Hualtulco

and in about 2 months we will move to Aubrey , TX .

 

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I can't top cruising up the Congo on a Navy ship, but here's some of the places I've been to since good old HHS, thanks largely to my career in the plastics industry, along with a number of vacation trips too:

 

Joe Carfora 1962 & Sharon Carfora

 

Germany :  Wildflecken (stationed here for 2 years as a company commander of a combat engineer company, 54th Engr. Battalion), plus all over the country since…

Hamburg * Frankfurt * Baden-Baden * Weisbaden * Munich * Stuttgart * Dresden

France : Paris * Grenoble * Lyon * Versailles

England :  London * Manchester * Wales

Italy :  Milan * Venice * Rome * Naples and all over the mountains and beaches of Calabria (the "boot" of the country in the south)

Hungary :  Budapest

Czech Republic :  Prague

Austria : Vienna

Greece :  Athens * Crete * Mykinos * Santorini * Rhodes

Turkey :  Istanbul * Troy * Ephesus * Kusadasi * Cappadocia * Antola

Denmark * Sweden * Venezuela * Grand Cayman Islands * Jamaica

Bahamas * Bermuda

China :  Hong Kong, Shanghai , Shenzhen

Taiwan :  Taipei

Mexico :  Mexico City , Juarez, Querettero, Acapulco , Cozumel, Playa del

Carmen

Hondurus: Rincon

Canada :  Toronto , Windsor , British Columbia

Hawaii :  Oahu, Maui , Kuai

Japan : Tokyo and numerous other cities

Korea :  Seoul , Pusan (to meet with Hyundai when they were still a small auto company)

And.............that's what comes to mind and I'm sure I've missed a few

too!  I've been blessed to be paid to see the world during my business

career and to make enough cash there to vacation all over too!!

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Pete Furgiuele 1968

 

I was on the USS Independence CVA - 62

 

 

It was July 24, 1969, and we were off the coast of Florida in the splash area for Apollo 11. Several days earlier, July 16, 1969 we were about 30 miles away from the launch area and we could hear the engines roaring and could see the light purple flame as Apollo 11 passed overhead. What a powerful sight.  That was history in the making.

Apollo 11 was the first manned mission to land on the Moon.

 

The first steps by humans on another planetary body were taken by Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin on July 20, 1969.

The astronauts also returned to Earth the first samples from another planetary body. Apollo 11 achieved its primary mission - to perform a manned lunar landing and return the mission safely to Earth - and paved the way for the Apollo lunar landing missions to follow.

In the early morning hours of July 24, 8 days, 3 hours, 18 minutes, and 18 seconds after leaving Kennedy Space Center , Columbia plopped down into the Pacific Ocean

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Pat Appelman Levitin 1962

 

Turkey * England * Scotland * Ireland * Argentina * Alaska * Greece

Egypt (and the Pyramids) * Jordan * Spain * Uruguay * Italy * Austria, Hungary * Prague * Gibraltar * Morocco * Israel * Sahara Desert (sleeping with the Berbers via camel)

almost every state in the US .

 

Costa Rica (zip lining)

A zip-line (also known as a flying fox, foefie slide, zip wire, aerial runway, aerial ropeslide, death slide consists of a pulley suspended on a cable mounted on an incline It is designed to enable a user propelled by gravity to travel from the top to the bottom of the inclined cable, usually made of stainless steel, by holding on or attaching to the freely moving pulley. Zip-lines come in many forms, most often used as a means of entertainment.

 

 

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Stephanie (Schlegel) Manning 1968

Hi Bob,
Good idea.  I have lived in Berkeley , California for 37 years and have been in almost every state except Alaska and Hawaii .  With many stories to tell.  Let's do it!
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June Diers Niedfeldt 1966

 

Hi Bob

I am not exactly sure what type of info you are looking for, but I have done quite a bit of traveling.  Some of the more notable places I have been to are:

Germany in 1969 with my sister and father.  My father immigrated to the US in 1926 and he hadn't been back to Germany for 42 years!  I got to meet my Aunt, Uncle and cousins.

Hawaii in 1969 to visit my then fiancé Pete (who was my first husband) on his R&R from Vietnam .

Las Vegas , Nevada , Grand Canyon and Phoenix , Arizona

Cruises to Alaska and the Caribbean (eastern, western and southern)

Florida , where both my sister and brother now live

Seattle , Washington where my now husband's (Kenny) father was living

Nashville , Tennessee to the Grand Ole Opry and various other US states.

Hope this helps and thanks for all you do with the newsletter and the more recent video.  I really enjoy them.  If there is more or different info that you are looking for, please let me know.

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Frank Anglisano 1969

Hey Bob, how bout a United States Navy Submarine that surfaced not once but twice from under the ice at the Artic Circle . I did!

United States Navy Retired

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Pete Maiorino 1964

Hi Bob

I’ve been to quite a few exciting places, I guess my most exciting trip was

to Beijing working on the Olympics. As soon as I got off the plane I just froze seeing Chinese soldiers everywhere with the same look on their faces that I saw in Vietnam over 40 years ago. The city was modernistic and very interesting.

 

The locals were incredible, all the kids wanted to have pictures taken with us. The Forbidden City , Great Wall and the Summer Palace were unbelievable. I was fortunate to spend over two months in China meeting wonderful local people and seeing these sites when it was possible.

The young people have a great respect for the elderly, more so than here in the US . All citizens live in fear of their government and do not voice their opinions about anything. The thing I remember most about this trip was meeting an old man in the park, he was playing with this musical Top and was tossing it the air on a simple piece of cord. When he saw how interested I was, he came over and tried to teach me how to do it, he did not speak a word of English. THE Chinese people are very proud people and would not accept money or gifts no matter how bad off they are. I knew he would not take money so all I had was an Olympic Pin on my ID. I took it off and gave it to him and at first he refused it. When I tried to explain to him that I wanted him to have it, he motioned for me to pin it on him which I did. This man looked like someone who just won the lottery, he was so happy and gave me such a hug that I will cherish forever. Working for NBC has taking me many places but this trip is the one I Cherish the most.

Best regards

 

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Al Sypher 1958

 

Bob,

Can't match your Congo River exploits but if anyone wants any conversation about a trek departing Vancouver, BC on Princess Cruise's via the inside passage to

Juneau , Skagway , Glacier Nat'l. Park

and disembarking at Whittier , Alaska , I'm your guy. We then boarded a "dome" car train to Anchorage and on to

Denali Nat'l. Park for touring. The return leg was highlighted by a stay in

Talkeetna and then on to Anchorage . Wildlife was in abundance and the scenery vast and spectacular. 

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Bob Gillette

 

How many as a civilian have landed in a plane on an aircraft carrier? I have! How many have been lowered from a moving helicopter by wire onto a moving destroyer that is moving at normal cruising speed? I have!

How many have been a student pilot with 8 hours of solo, got caught in storms on a solo cross country flight in a Cessna 150 and blown sideways off course, unable to read maps due to severe turbulence, landing in Mobile Al. with .3 gallon of gas left in the tank? Yep, me!

(Was heading to Gulfport Ms.)

Who has hiked from the top of Bear Mtn NY down to the bottom of the North side, then hiked all the way around the mountain to the South side, and back up to the top, all in one day, for a total of 18.6 miles? I did! (Missed a turn!)

I have had many more exciting adventures. I always say I'd rather be lucky than good!

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Robert Casale 1961

 

Drama on the Congo

 

The USS LIBERTY, (AGTR-5), was cruising along, in calm seas, off the West coast of Africa in close proximity to the Congo River . Debris, consisting of fallen trees, planks of various sizes and an assortment of additional garbage constantly exited the Congo forming a trail into the Atlantic Ocean . The trail was visible for miles and those of us aboard LIBERTY waited to see if any bodies surfaced...the two Congo 's, Brazzaville and Leopoldville were constantly at odds, and loss of life in these two countries was an everyday occurrence.

Communication Technician Seaman (CTSN) Bobby Ringe began his day in a usual fashion. After having breakfast, he went topside to catch a breath of fresh air while waiting for morning muster. He was scheduled to stand an evening watch, so, after muster, he had nothing to do. He left the main deck after muster and went to the radio space (RR1) two levels below the main deck because he had to see Joe Bonsignore. Bonsignore was standing the day watch and would be relieved in the afternoon by Bobby Ringe. Ringe opened the door leading to RR1 and walked over to the position occupied by Bonsignore and without thinking, picked up a set of headphones and put them onto his head. He realized he did this without thinking and immediately took them from his head and put them onto the position between the two receivers and the tape recorder.

"What are you doing here, Bobby," Bonsignore asked?

"I have a message for you," he chided. "Tommy Bird told me at breakfast this morning that it won't be long and you'll be able to play pinochle like the big boys!"

Just as Ringe uttered the last word, a strange pain invaded his right side His left hand went to the area and he pushed slightly against his side to help relieve the discomfort. It passed.

Bonsignore, chuckling, said, "You tell Mr. Bird that he's right. It won't be long and I'll get back some of the bucks I've donated to the Stenzel and Bird drinking fund!"

Ringe started to say something when a second and more predominant pain caused him to stop mid sentence to take a deep breath.

Bonsignore asked, "Are you okay, man?"

"I hope so," Ringe said. "I had this pain in my right side but it's gone."

"Better be careful," Bonsignore said. "It could be your appendix."

Ringe decided to go back to the berthing compartment in the after part of the ship. He left RR1 and stuck his head into the Coordination Center that was directly across the hall from RR1. He said hello to one of the Portuguese linguists that were sent from NSA for this TAD (Temporary Additional Duty) to Africa . He had met Dino when the group of eight had boarded the day before LIBERTY left from Norfolk . He needed a new pinochle partner and Dino might be the right person.

He let the door close and headed for the ladder that would take him to the next level up but still one level below the main deck. As his foot hit the second step on the ladder, a third and decisive pain persuaded him that perhaps Bonsignore was right. It could be his appendix so a trip to sick bay was in order.

Ringe's trip to sick bay took a long time. He made stops along the way clutching his side as pain after pain wracked his body. He made it up the ladder to just outside the door leading to sick bay. As he opened the door, an excruciating pain made him so ill, he barfed up some greenish fluid. The corpsman standing inside the door took notice because most of the greenish fluid landed on his shoes. He grabbed Ringe as he started to fall to the deck and placed him on a patient table on his back. He yelled to the doctor who was in the next room redressing a wound one of the deck personnel had gotten a few days earlier.

"Doc," he said. "Ringe has bad pains in his right side and he just threw up some green stuff. The doctor did some preliminary doctor shit and determined that it was, more than likely, an appendix problem. The doctor decided that Ringe needed surgery, as soon as possible.

The doctor and the corpsman both knew that there wasn't enough general anesthesia to complete an operation. They had used most of what they had the previous week and wouldn't get more until they pulled into their next port for liberty. He did have sufficient ether to perform what is called an "open drop" but he had never done that before and was afraid to risk it on Ringe. There wasn't much time and the life of this young man was in his hands.

The Commanding Officer, Commander Daniel Wieland, had been notified of what was happening. He raced to sick bay and the doctor and the CO put their heads together. Ringe needed surgery, so he had to be transported someplace where the surgery could be performed.

The skipper and doc went to the ship's general service radio shack on the main deck. An urgent radio message was sent to the Commander in Chief of the Atlantic Fleet (CINCLANTFLT) for an appropriate answer. CINCLANTFLT contacted the American Embassy in Brazzaville and arrangements were being made to transport Ringe from LIBERTY to the Naval Hospital in Tripoli . There was a slight logistics problem that had to be resolved. How do you get a man from a ship at the mouth of the Congo River to Tripoli for surgery to perhaps save his life???

End of Part 1…Next is the trip up the Congo To Banana