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December 2011

Dear Members,

Thanks to all of you who attended, supported, and contributed to make our reunion one of the most successful and memorable in recent years. We've received many letters, e-mails, and calls of appreciation. All activities from the golf tournament, Remembrance Ceremony, picnic, to the banquet were enjoyed by all. I'd particularly like to thank Lt Gen James for his insight and remarks at our annual banquet. For those unable to attend, start planning now for next year's festivities scheduled for 27 - 29 September 2012.

On that topic, what a pleasure it is to work with Maj Gen Bob Otto and his entire staff! Maj Gen Otto's commitment to our Association is incredible, and was so well-reflected by his team prior to and during the reunion weekend. As stated during the Remembrance Ceremony, I view our support to him and his current generation of ISR warfighters as an obligation. Reciprocally, General Otto's regard and respect for prior generations is equally evident, and I can't state how much we appreciate his advocacy and support.

As evidenced during our annual meeting, things are moving with the FTVA. It was a great pleasure to have John "Tilly" Toillion, J.J. Graham, and Jim Kaus brief activities on behalf of their respective Aloha, Heritage, and Sunshine Chapters. The Gold Country Chapter continues to do well (missed you this year, Sac), and there's good momentum with the National Capital Chapter via one of our recent Hall of Honor inductees, Al Dowling. Barnie Gavin is in the process of forming yet another FTVA chapter in the Colorado Springs area. I view these chapters as the lifeblood of the association - they ensure an active and involved membership, and the Florida and Colorado chapters have brought in new FTVA'ers. Our organization is financially healthy, but only as long as we have vibrant membership and Vigilant Partners programs. Thanks for your efforts in securing these areas!

I again had the honor of representing the FTVA at the Major General Doyle Larson Awards Banquet, one of our most significant support projects. Maj Gen Otto and AFISRA Command Chief Rick Ricker hosted a first-class affair, and it was exciting to see over 75 of the AF ISR Agency's most talented enlisted personnel recognized for their skills and efforts. As the late Maj Gen Larson once noted, this is one of the few recognition programs that recognizes individuals solely for their mission-related skills. It was an added privilege to have Mrs. Larson, and her daughters, Nancy and Mary, in attendance. I noted many of our members present, and thank each of you for enabling us to support the Larson Awards.

In closing, I'd like to refer you to a blog written by MSgt-ret Rick Fenwick. Rick is a recent FTVA member and attended his first FTVA reunion this year. Take a few minutes to look it up - no mission statement, charter, or by-laws could possibly summarize the FTVA as well as this article. (See p.51 of the Dec 2011 Remain in Touch.) http://ruiningsterner.com/2011/09/26/for-ernie/#comments

Remain in touch, Lee

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File last updated: March 21, 2013 8:18:19 PM CDT