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Hotel 27 Vietnam

Vietnam Veterans of Hotel Company, 2nd Battalion, 7th Marines

2017 Reunion After Action Report

The New Orleans, Louisiana (NOLA) 12th Reunion was a resounding success! David and Leticia (Letty) did a superb job of hosting and organizing the event and activities. A special thanks to Rudy and Janie Ramon; Barbara and Lenny Pollack; John and Priscilla Chang, friends of the Pollacks (see Saturday evening discussion for more on John); and Jerry Norris for assisting with hosting of the reunion. Sergeant Grit who usually provides many of the reunion give-aways was recently sold; however, Jerry Norris and others provided several give-aways—Thank you.

Over 118 Marines and Navy Corpsmen and their families and families of deceased members of the company attended the reunion. The attendance was down some from past reunions, but many more family members were in attendance. Thirty-six Marines and nine corpsmen were in attendance. Two members of the company attended their first reunion.

On Friday, most took advantage of the great sights, sounds, and foods of New Orleans. Particularly of note was the World War II Museum. It is truly an experience that should not be missed and the city is one of the crown jewels of LA.

The Saturday night dinner, short program, and dancing created a relaxed atmosphere for continuing to build camaraderie and relationships. After an absence from the last two reunions, it was great to have Steve Cone back as the master of ceremonies. John Chang, a US Army Veteran of the Vietnam War, read a poem titled "Just a Common Soldier". The poem is a tribute to those who serve and was a great addition to the night. The evening's entertainment was a little different than other reunions as the band played during the buffet dinner which allowed those who were not eating to dance and enjoy the outstanding band. (It seemed like more people stayed to dance and visit after 2200 than previous reunions!)

On Sunday morning, attendees enjoyed a relaxed buffet breakfast followed by a memorial ceremony to honor Hotel's Fallen Comrades from the Vietnam War.

All and all, NOLA was a special place for a reunion. The Veterans of Hotel Company and all others who attended the reunion are indebted to David "Doc" and Letty McCann who, on short notice, volunteered to host the reunion. Planning and organizing a reunion in under one year is not a simple task as hours of phone calls, visits to vendors, and coordination meetings are required. Thank you Doc and Letty!

Boots for Wounded Warriors

Three years ago, Tom Cartlidge, Hotel Company Commander during Tet 1968, who works for Olsen-Stelzer, started a program that provides custom made boots for Wounded Warriors at no charge. The cost of the boots is covered by tax-deductible donations. At the Reunion, a 'hat' was passed and enough money was collected to make a pair of boots for Army Major Dale Papka. A picture of Tom measuring Major Papka is on the Hotel Company website. If you would like to see more pictures of boots that have been made, go to www.olsenstelzerboots.com and look on their Facebook page. For more information concerning this program, contact Tom by calling 940 781-8801.

Hotel Company Plaque

The plaque donated by Gary "Doc" Watkins and the model for the Hotel Company Monument located at the National Museum of the Marine Corps has found a permanent home. After the Reunion, Doc loaded the plaque in his car and delivered it to the 2nd Battalion, 7th Marines in 29 Palms, CA. A quote from the Battalion thank you note: "The plaque will be the first thing Marines see as they make their way up the steps of 2/7. Thanks to all of you who contributed and sacrificed as your efforts have allowed Marines to continue to fight and win wars".

Company Website

Jerry Moorehead has done an outstanding job updating the website with more pictures and other relevant company information. If you have not visited the website, take a look at http://hotel27vietnam.org.

2019 Reunion—San Diego, CA

Members of the company were unanimous in deciding that the site for the next reunion will be San Diego, California. The dates are 21-24 June. Dan Steiner who has hosted two previous reunions will lead the charge. A letter from Dan is attached to this AAR. If you are interested in helping, give him a call—618.567.4077 or send an e-mail, dsteiner49@yahoo.com.

"Where the Difference Begins"

Put the 2019 Reunion on your schedule! Attend and renew old friendships and make new friends. Many attendees are bringing their families and other guests to reunions. Because the Reunion is on the West Coast, lodging will be more expensive! Some of the cost will be offset by using funds accumulated from previous reunions. More information discussing the lodging offset will follow.

You can help to make the 2019 Reunion the best ever! Immediately contact company members that you would like to see at the 2019 Reunion and encourage them to attend. Keep the pressure on with letters, e-mails, and phone calls with reminders of the reunion. If you need address and phone number help, contact Dan Steiner who maintains a database with contact information for over 600 members of the company. (Phone and e-mail above.)

Semper Fidelis to the Veterans of Hotel Company!