USS Askari

1999 Reunion - Fort Mitchell, KY - June 2-4

Excerpts from the post reunion Newsletter by President Ed Toth

Greetings to my Askari Friends . . . . .
Well our 4th reunion, that was held in Fort Mitchell, Kentucky on July 1-4 is all over.   I hope everyone had a great time, I know Virgene and I did.  You fellows who didn't attend for one reason or another missed another great opportunity to renew friendships with men you served with on one of the best ships the Navy set afloat.

I was sorry to hear about the many men who couldn't attend (but wish they could have) because of health problems.  My best wishes for a speedy return to better and brighter days in the future.  We had many new faces that I was over-joyed to see, especially Joe Hayes and wife Betty.  Also new to our group were Paul Erasmus and his wife Donna and Merrill Davis who graciously acted as temporary secretary.  Of course, our regular shipmates that never fail to attend our reunions were Al Wolfe and wife Susie, John Roth and wife Virginia, Ace Reno and son Tim, and Larry Ethridge who was a keynote speaker at the M.R.F.R. banquet this year.

Ed mentions also the next MFRA reunion in Washington, DC on Veterans Day 2000, a questionnaire to be sent out, Annual Dues,   and thanks to those who attended this last reunion.


Left to Right: Ace Reno, Merrill Davis, Ed Toth, John Roth, Al Wolfe, Joe Hayes, Paul Erasmus, Larry Etheridge


L to R: Merrill Davis, Joe Hayes, Ed Toth, Paul Erasmus, Al Wolfe,
Below: Ace Reno


Meeting of The Askari Association
July 3, 1999

Meeting Called to Order
The meeting was called to order by President Ed Toth at 10:15 a.m.

Members in Attendance
Merrill Davis     Ace Reno
Paul Erasmus     John Roth
Larry Etheridge     Ed Toth
Barney Hayes     Al Wolfe

Secretary's Report
In the absence of Secretary Harold Neihart, Merrill Davis read the minutes of the June 1997 meeting.  The minutes were approved as read.

Members were informed that Paul Taylor has passed away, bringing the total of members to six. Deceased members are:
 1. John Campbell     4. Edward Schnurr
  2. Gordon Johnson 5. Bill Thompson
  3. Clyde Killion      6. Paul Taylor

President Toth suggested we send flowers in the future in memory of members who pass away.  General agreement was indicated to the suggestion.

Financial Report
In the absence of Treasurer Tom Willoughby, President Ed Toth reported the treasury has approximately $1440.  There are a number of members in arrears in dues.  We need a new system for notifying people regarding dues.  We need to assure everyone has a membership card.  The question was raised as to whether we need to send a new membership card every time dues are paid.  Various suggestions were made concerning keeping dues current.  President Toth stated cards will be sent out on dues.  The treasurer's report was approved

Old Business
There was a discussion of problems with getting a suite in which to hold meetings.
The question was raised as to whether to stay with Mobile Riverine Force Association (MFRA) or go on our own in the future.

Discussion regarding the pros and cons regarding MFRA and locale of meeting ensued.  Larry Etheridge moved that a questionnaire be sent be sent to all members regarding locale of meeting and giving responsibility for development of the questionnaire to the officers.  The motion was seconded and approved.

A suggestion was made to publicize the Askari Association in publications that cater to Veterans.  It was decided that we will publicize the Association in various media and will develop a questionnaire regarding location, timing, and other variables concerning meetings.

Vice President Al Wolfe indicated letters have been received from some World War II members asking to be dropped from the roster.  A discussion ensued about having lifetime members, members emeritus, etc.

New Business

It was moved, seconded, and approved that the present slates of officers continue to serve.  One officer, the Chaplain, has passed away.  Merrill Davis volunteered to serve as Chaplain and general agreement was given. The officers are:

President: Ed Toth
Vice President: Albert Wolfe
Secretary: Harold Neihart
Treasurer: Tom Willoughby
Chaplain: Merrill Davis

A question was raised about shirts or other moneymaking items.  President Toth presented some of the ttems that are available such as hats, bumper stickers, patches, and shirts.

The MRFA meeting scheduled of Veterans Day, 2000 in Washington, D.C. was discussed.  President Toth invited suggestions as to what we could do together.  It was agreed that we would ask about next year's MFRA Washington, D.C. meeting.

Larry Etheridge indicated he would write to the potential Viet Nam era members once we decide about our next meeting.

A question was raised regarding sending a "thank you" to Coors for providing beer.

Vice President Wolfe will draft a questionnaire including Washington, D.C., locations, times, etc. to be reviewed be the President and Treasurer.

Several members indicated what they would do to increase the publicity and outreach of the Askari Association.

Meeting Adjourned

It was moved and seconded to adjourn the meeting at 11:45 a.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Merrill Davis
Acting Secretary