Also some things are happening since yesterday, when I wrote this, involving the Memorial Service that are all to the good but a little different from what I said in this letter. These incidental details involve who is in charge of planning and execution and the surprise I hinted at that will become a reality. These things will be announced in a future update.
Branson update for April 2, 2015
Things are moving right along to make this event a memorable one. We have 148 confirmed reservations, including also a few people staying at other locations than our two hotels. The Branson Towers is filled and The Angel Inn by the Strip is starting to fill, 417-336-5151 at $60 plus tax a night for a double. 18 rooms have been spoken for there as of a couple of days ago and we foresee your having no problem getting a room there if you call in your reservation in the near future. The Angel Inn is 3 miles from the Branson Towers and has its own meeting room for those staying there. Branson Towers is still the main HQ with two meeting areas and is the place where you should visit our reunion desk for name tags and souvenir hat pins as well as finding out, and letting us keep track of, who is in attendance. Remember also that both hotels will be serving complimentary full breakfasts each morning of your stay.
If you are interested in the optional excursion, the Ride the Ducks and Branson Belle, money needs to be in by the 24th of April so checks will have time to clear before I pay both venues the first week in May. If you haven’t already sent me your check, now would be a good time to get out your checkbook. Send your payment to( email me for info because of internet showing of this letter). For both the Ducks and Belle the price is, tax and gratuity included $76.36 per person. If you want to just do the Branson Belle, and get to the landing by POV, the total is $48.36 per person. I reserved some more seats the other day and have been assured there would be no problem in adding more people to this group between now and the end of this month. I’ll acknowledge all checks received so you will know I received the money you send.
The Ducks and Belle trip should follow this schedule: On Friday, June 5th, at 1:45 pm the Ducks will arrive and take on passengers at the Branson Towers hotel. The former Army Ducks will then set off on an hour tour of some local sights, including a water ride to show why they are called Ducks. This trip will end by delivering the passengers to the Branson Belle landing at about 3:00 pm. At this point people will be directed to line up at a table near the gate and tickets will be distributed with seat numbers assigned for the dinner and show and I’ll be on hand to see that everybody gets the tickets they paid for. At this juncture people who wish to sit together should line up and get tickets together. Anyone who opted to skip the Ducks must be at the landing when the Ducks arrive at 3:00 pm and should just get in line for their Belle tickets with the people coming by Ride the Ducks. When you get your ticket board the Belle and feel free to roam around until the dinner starts serving at 4:00 followed by the show and cruise. When this adventure is over the Ducks will be waiting to return the Duck riding group to the Branson Towers.
On Saturday June 6, there will be a memorial service held at the Starlite Theatre which is said to be “right next door” to the Angel Inn, our second hotel. Col. Jack Logan, former battalion commander 68/69 is expected to say a few words. Lt. Mike Moynahan, formerly platoon leader with Alpha in 69/70, now a man of the cloth, will preside at the ceremony to remember the men the battalion who have died since Vietnam as well as those who died in Vietnam. At some juncture, Billy Dean, who is appearing at the Starlite Theatre will dedicate a song to the battalion. It is also possible there will be a surprise exhibit of an object at this event that should meet with the approval of everyone. Jerry White is in charge of this production.
We continue to look for men who we have no known address for. Jerry White asked for some help recently in doing some paid searches and several guys responded with assistance. We continue to reach out to more men than have ever been reached out to before in attempting to produce a memorable reunion experience.
If you are in contact with guys you served with by email or otherwise please encourage them to meet you at the reunion. If anyone wants a list of names and contact information let me or Jerry White know. If anyone is willing to make some phone calls we can supply names and numbers.