Reunion 2016 - After Action Report
The Fifteenth Bentwaters Buds Reunion, Rincon Georgia
The Zeiglers and the Hoovers would like to thank every one who came to the reunion. The weather cooperated and was very nice, no unexpected thunder showers or here in the South," torrential rain".
In attendance were: John & Chris Hoover, Ray & Jane Zeigler, Larry & Jeanne Bourque, Dean & Pat Burgstahler, Frank & Suzy Kauczka, Mike & Eileen Nissley, Gary & Debbie Roberts, Steve & Lydia Seymour, John & Christina Urbank, Ervin & Carolyn Zimmerman, Dave Redetzke & Pat Beldo, and our new member Jim Askew. Owing to family illness Lewis & Janet Poley, Richard & Shelley Peach had to cancel. We are all thinking of them at this trying time.
Everyone gathered Friday afternoon at the Zeiglers for snacks then a Southern Fried chicken meal that night from Simply Southern. Saturday the men enjoyed the Mighty Eighth Museum. The tour guide was very good, making the tour interesting. The ladies went to Savannah for a trolley tour, then lunch at the Old Pink House, which was enjoyed by all. The ladies also enjoyed shopping in Savannah, then back to Rincon to finish up at the Curiosity Shoppe for more shopping and some refreshments.
Photos were taken of the group back at Ray's that afternoon. All the Buds and women wore beards for the photos to look like Ray, creating lots of laughs and fun for all. The ladies exchanged gifts and the men toasted fallen Buds with an Irish Blessing by Miie Nissley.
A southern Bar-b-que from The Rusty Pig was served for the evening meal. To finish the meal, a homemade cake with the Spook iced on it was served. Most of the Buds left the motel on Sunday leaving behind the construction that was going on, which made for quite some talking points.
We would like to thank everyone for the gifts they brought and also the people that helped: Ryan & "Mike" O'Conner, Dawn Snipes & Christopher Zeigler.
We are looking for someone to host the 2017 Reunion. Having two couples host this year made it a lot of fun and sharing the work load helped so much. Please contact John Hoover if you think you can host the 2017 Reunion.
Thank You all again for coming and making it another great REUNION. ( SEE Y'ALL NEXT YEAR)
John & Chris
SIMPLY SOUTHERN REMINDER
Just a reminder to all Buds, the reunion is coming up fast, so if you have
This will be the FIFTEENTH REUNION so we are hoping for a great turnout.
Friday: Meet at Rays at 4:00 p.m. if you are early arrivals,
Evening meal at 6:30 p.m.
Saturday: breakfast at hotel,
Ladies will leave hotel at 9:30 for a tour of Savannah.
Evening meal will be served at 6:30 p.m.
We are planning a very southern menu.
P.S it would be good to know as early as possible how many
We hope to see Y’all September 23rd and 24th
2016 Bentwaterbuds Reunion
Hosted by: Ray & Jane
Zeigler and Chris & John Hoover
The 2016 Bentwaters Buds Reunion will be held in Rincon, Georgia on September 23 & 24 hosted by Ray and Jane Zeigler, cohosted by John and Chris Hoover.
This will be our 15th Annual Bentwaters Buds Reunion. We are announcing this early so plans can be made to attend this special reunion.
A block of rooms have been reserved at:
Hampton Inn Savannah North
Price for rooms $81.75 a night with breakfast.
Any questions, call Ray Zeigler 912-826-5910 or John Hoover
2015 BWBuds Reunion Details
The 2015 Bentwaters Buds Reunion will be held in St. Louis, MO on Sept 18 and 19 hosted by Frank and "Suzy" Kauczka
A block of rooms have been reserved at the Drury Inn Airport
2 rooms with Queen beds
Call 1-800-325-0720 and refer to group number 2238497 or
Click Here to reserve a room online.
Note: Reunion will be in Overland, MO, about 13 miles from the center of St. Louis and the ARCH
If there is any problem or questions, please feel free to call or use click on the "Contact Frank and Suzy" button below to e-mail us.
2014 BWBuds Reunion Details
Each passing day brings us closer to the 2014 reunion on October 10 thru 12 at 3904 Randall Rd in Green Cove Springs, Florida. This year’s hosts are Erv & Carolyn Zimmerman and Steve Seymour. The location provides a convenient opportunity for those in the southeastern part of the states. Please consider attending as we are always glad to see old friends we knew at Bentwaters. Don’t forget to bring photos, souvenirs and memories to share
Motel arrangements are with the Sleep Inn, 1815 East West Parkway, Orange Park, FL 32003, which is 10.6 miles from the reunion site. Their phone number is 904-215-8900. They have two types of rooms, Standard (with either 2 queens or 1 king) for $70.00 or Suite (with either 2 queens or 1 king) for $82.00. The suites have a couch and extra space. They will only reserve 10 rooms at a time, so it is important that you make your reservations as early as possible so we can get another block of 10 rooms. All reservations must be made before September 7, 2014. Make sure to mention that you are part of the group BENTWATER BUDS.
Fleming Island Sleep Inn & Suites
For the Ladies, we have planned a trip on Saturday to St Augustine, FL where we have arranged a group rate for the Old Town Trolley Tour of $16.00 per person. We will depart for St. Augustine around 09:30 and park at the San Sebastian Winery, where we will board the trolley tour. If you wish, you can get off the trolley at any of the numerous historical sites and shops along the way and then re-board the trolley at any stop. St George Street is a pedestrian shopping mall. Everyone is free to see what they wish. Tour maps of St Augustine will be available on Saturday morning before we depart. We will meet back at the winery at about 1:00pm for lunch and a tour of the winery and then return home. If you require more information please call.
The men will tour the Military Museum of North Florida. The museum preserves and presents much of the rich military history of our citizen servicemen and women in order to honor their sacrifices to maintain our freedom. Admission is on a donation basis. The museum is located about 3 miles from the reunion site.
Friday, Oct 10 – Early arrivals
Arrival Time: At your convenience
Sat, Oct 10
09:00 - Assemble at 3904 Randall Rd. for Continental Breakfast
Sunday, Oct 11
At your convenience – Continental Breakfast at the Sleep Inn
If you wish to extend your trip, there are numerous tourist attractions within a few hour’s drive from Green Cove springs. Major attractions include: the Orlando Theme Parks (Disney and Universal) are about a 2 1/2-hour drive. Kennedy Space center is about 2 hours away.
For additional information you can contact us via
This is an update and a reminder to book your rooms by Sept 7 for the special rates at the motel
We’re looking forward to seeing everybody in October.
Erv, Carolyn & Steve
Buds Visit Old Friend!
October 21, 2013
Rocky, Peaches and I had a very good visit with an old friend of ours. 64-0891 looked a little rough, but is due to be restored next summer. Rocky produced a pic of 891 in the training hangar taken sometime 67, 68 or 69.
As far as I know this is the only accessible F4 that we all worked on. Of course it just happens to be the one I rode in flown by Major Knott on Sept. 12, 1969.
We met Eric Lent at the Wisconsin National Guard Museum. He was very interested in our old stories and was very helpful. The WNG is going to restore 0891 and like most projects it is very tight on funds. If any of you would like to contribute the restoration, that would be great.
If you want to contact Eric his number is 608-427-1280
We also discussed the possibilty of having a reunion there in the future and Eric thought it could be done.
Enjoy the pics!
John (Stick) Hoover
September 16, 2013
Thank you to our host and hostess, Dave Redetzke and Pat Beldo
for providing a fantastic reunion in a beautiful setting. Dave and
Pat were assisted by several friends and family members:
All attendees arrived on or before Friday, September 13 at the C'mon Inn located in Park Rapids, Minnesota. On Friday evening we met at Dave's beautiful retreat in the woods in Menahga.
Dave and Pat welcomed everyone with plenty of food and drink. Dave made a large fire to warm everyone on a chilly Minnesota night. We all got reacquainted as we enjoyed homemade lasagna served with coleslaw and flat bread ending with angel food cake topped with strawberries or blueberries.
On Saturday we ate breakfast at the motel and at 9:30 Dave led our caravan to Itasca State Park. We walked a trail ending at the headwaters of the Mississippi river. After much picture taking and gift buying we were treated to a wonderful picnic in the park. After lunch, we boarded a sightseeing boat for a cool and sometimes damp 2 hour tour of Lake Itasca. We saw a beautiful shore with several Bald Eagles, Loons and Blue Heron as we listened to a history of the area from the captains... We could view the headwaters again from the boat. Once back on shore, we drove to Dave's retreat as the rain continued. His retreat offered plenty of room for all. The ladies gathered in the front room to exchange gifts as the Buds conducted business around a huge, round wood table. The Buds saluted fallen comrades with traditional shots of Jameson along with a prayer read by Mike Nissley.
We discussed and agreed to create a dues system to offset the cost of future reunions. Gary Roberts was appointed to oversee and collect dues. Watch for more details in a future email.
Erv & Carolyn Zimmerman volunteered to host the 2014 reunion in Florida, near Jacksonville, date to be announced later. Many gifts were exchanged by the men as the meeting came to an end
We were treated to a wonderful meal of BBQ chicken and ribs, smoked salmon, baked potatoes and several delicious side dishes. Following the traditional group and couples photos, a special cake was served displaying the 91st TFS emblem.
The remainder of the evening was spent viewing a slide show of pictures of the good ole days.
Gary had asked Mike Nissley to keep Stick in line and for everyone else to keep Mike in line. Well, everyone else failed miserably.
A special thank you to Dave and Pat for hosting an outstanding reunion, everyone had a great time. Attendance this year was good. We had 15 men and 13 ladies in attendance. There were no first time members however.
Larry and Jeanne Bourque
Stick Hoover reporting – See you next year in Florida!
2012 BWBuds Reunion Details
September 10, 2012
Good morning everyone,
Debbie and I made it home safe and sound and hope each of you did also.
First a BIG THANK YOU to our host and hostess, Mike and Eileen Nissley. They really made everyone feel at home. Mike and Eileen live in a very beautiful home with an enormous yard surrounded by several large trees in a very beautiful country setting. Great for hosting reunions, but a lot to maintain.
As we all know, organizing a get-to-gether such as this is not a small undertaking so help was needed. Another big THANK YOU to Mike & Eileen's daughter Shane Rohrbaugh, son in law Chris, granddaughter Kate, grandson Tyler, and cousin Gina Smith who pitched in to make sure everything went smoothly. Also to John and Chris Hoover who arrived a day early to lend a hand. Thanks again to everyone who helped make it happen.
As usual, things got started late Friday afternoon. Most arrived around 4 PM and started renewing old friendships. Mike and Eileen had shirts made up and distributed them to all the men. The grills were fired up around 6 PM and I could not believe all the food. Burgers, brats, and all the side dishes. There was also plenty of liquid refreshment. Mike and Eileen asked everyone to meet back at their home Saturday between 9 and 10 AM, as the ladies were going on a TDY at 10 AM.
Saturday, everyone arrived plenty early. There was fresh fruit and pastry along with hot coffee for those that wanted it. The ladies departed for York, PA to take in some shopping, sight seeing and lunch. The men stayed behind to share stories and view many pictures. It is truly amazing when you listen to the stories that seem to have happened yesterday, but in many cases it was over 46 years ago. Our version of the " FAB FOUR " finally got together. Mike Nissley, Jim Legg, Blaine Wotring and Dean Varner spent their four years together, from basic, to Bentwaters.
While the ladies were gone the men drank a toast to our departed brothers: George Tarpley, Randy Baisch, Dave Boroff, Jim Tiller, Warren Chamura, and Robert " Pops " McPartland. We know they were all with us in spirit. We also had a passing of the " staff " from Mike Nissley to Dave Redetzke who will host reunion 2013 in New York Mills, Minnesota. Tentative scheduled for the first week in October, 2013. Dates to be announced soon.
Attendance this year was super. We had 21 men and 17 ladies attend. I thought we were going to break last years record, but two of the fellows had to decline at the last minute. Frank Kauczka and Jim fulfilled our tradition of getting at least one new Bud to attend. I hope they enjoyed themselves enough to want come back. We have now had 36 Airmen from 22 different states to attend. Those in Attendance this year were: Larry and Jeanne Bourque, Dean and Pat Burgstahler, Jim and Donna Butch, Steve Gunderson, John and Chris Hoover, Frank and Suzy Kauczka, Steve Ketchale, Larry and Bernie Kuepper, Paul and Barbara Kuzinski, Rick and Brenda Lawrence, Jim and Joann Legg, Mike and Eileen Nissley, Ron and Bonnie Novak, Richard and Shelley Peach, Lewis Poley, Dave Redetzke with Pat Beldo, Gary and Debbie Roberts, Dean and Martha Varner, Blaine Wotring, Ray and Jane Zeigler and Erv and Carolyn Zimmerman.
Saturday there was several severe storm warnings in the area. The ladies in York got hit a little harder than the guys. Mike announced we were going to plan B, we secured the area and moved inside for a while. We had some rain, but the storm never happened. Things got a little wet but did not dampen anyone's spirit. By the time the food arrived the rain had ended and we moved back out side. Pulled pork, chicken, an assortment of vegetables and salad items, and cake for desert. The food was great. One tremendous job by our host, hostess, and their family members.
I sincerely hope everyone gives Erv Zimmerman a thank you and a pat on the back for our tremendous web site. It is not an easy job and the site makes all of us proud.
Please keep the buds and their wives who were uable to attend due to health problems in your thoughts and prayers.
We have a host for 2013 and a possible host for 2014. If you missed 2012 there is always next year.
God Bless Everyone.
October 10, 2011
Mike & Eileen
Hampton Inn Shrewsbury