Whiskey Battery 1/12 Reunion– Dearborn, MI Chattanooga, TN – 2019

Saturday, Sept. 14, 2019

Attendance: Russ & Joye Hicks, daughter Leslie & son-in-law Rob Plummer and son Russ. Virgil & Sandy Boyer, Charlie Biddix and friend Bob Lovin, Dick Stoud, daughter Melonie Carideo and sister Pat Walker, Ron Cummins, Garry and Connie Jines, son Jacob & Jacob’s girlfriend Jasmine, Jerry and Gail Nevils, Dave Ruppell and daughter Christa Riolo, , Robert and Mary Jones, John and Roseanne Smith, Mike Nuzzolo and son Jonathan, Reggie Zhuckkahosee and wife Carol, son Reggie and daughter Gina, Tim Wolf, Keith and Teddie Reichenbach, Steve and Joy Samoheyl, James Talbert, Hammond Dean, Jr., Dick Huslander, Vince Kurucz and friend Bertie Volpe, Joe and Debbie Bissonnette, Dale Millard, Michael and Jan Mead, Ronald and Gail Saunders, Mark Keefe, Jim and Jane Maines, Benny and Geinine Lyles.

Call to Order:

Virgil Boyer called the meeting to order at 9:15 AM

Opening Prayer:

Charlie Biddix said the opening prayer

Pledge of Allegiance and Marine Corp Hymn:

Dale Millard led the group in reciting the pledge of Allegiance and followed by playing the Marine Corp Hymn on his harmonica.

Dick Stroud, this year’s host, welcomed and expressed his thanks to everyone attending.

Melonie Carideo auctioned off a necklace made by a friend of hers, Kathy Oconnellbanker, which consisted of an actual button off a Marine uniform surrounded by beautiful filigree. Kathy is also on a Facebook Page for her crafts called Military Marketplace. She is a West Point Cadet mom. She also makes custom made nutcrackers. There ensued a bidding war between Ron Cummins & Mike Nuzzolo that started at $35 and finally closed at $210—the necklace finally going to Ron Cummins.

Treasurer’s Report:

Dick Huslander reported that the cash balance forward as of September 13, 2019 was $1501.08.

This year’s expenditures consisted of the cost of our web domain at $183.24 and a Web Secure service at $64.94 leaving a new balance of $1,252.90.

Revenue from passing the hat amounted to $1,145.

Old Business:

Debbie Bissonnette spoke regarding the Vettix website that Connie Jines had brought up last year. She researched the site and through a close friend verified that it as legitimate. You need to sign up via the Vettix website. Once on the website, there will be a link to take you to another website that will verify that you are a veteran (IDME). You will need to have a copy of your DD214 and your license electronically so that you can submit it. If you are considered a disabled Vet the process is easier. There is a link on the IDME website that you can use for your verification. Once signed up, you will receive several daily emails with notifications of the tickets that are available in your area. Tickets are deeply discounted or, in some cases, available through a lottery system—see website for details. If you should decide to sign up, Debbie’s referral code is 1984800. She will receive points for each veteran who signs up.

Charlie Biddix told a story about him and Dick Stroud in Khe Sahn. Note: These are the kinds of stories that Connie Jines would like to capture and post on our website and into the book she is creating. It is strongly encouraged that anyone who wants to relay a story to contact Connie.

At Virgil’s request, everyone present went around the room introducing themselves, those attending the reunion with them and gave a brief description of themself.

Mark Keefe gave the background on the bottle originally purchased by Dick Stroud. It is a bottle of Jack Daniels Single Barrel Whiskey for the Tontine. Mark told how he created a box out of Mirror Finish Stainless Steel to house the bottle in. Mark has been bringing the bottle/box to every reunion so that it can eventually be given to the "last man standing" in Whiskey Battery 1/12.



New Business:

Debbie Bissonnette spoke about the Veterans Mission Act that was passed in either June or July of this year. The act is in response to those veterans who have difficulty getting appointments at their closest VA or satellite office. Through this act a veterans is allowed to go to an outside physician and/or pharmacy in order to have their needs met more promptly. The Mission Act website has links that can be used to find the nearest physician, pharmacy and Urgent Care Center. You could also use this website when traveling if you need these services in an emergency.

Joe Bissonnette spoke regarding the Marine Corp League which is a national organization. He encouraged all his fellow Marines to consider joining this worthwhile organization.

Joe and Debbie Bissonnette volunteered to host the 2020 reunion in Newport, RI. Virgil asked if anyone else present would like to host the next reunion. It was voted on by a show of hands and confirmed that next year’s reunion will be in Newport. Garry Jines also stated that he and Connie are ready and willing to host another reunion and are looking for suggestions of which city those present would be interested in having a reunion held in. He stated that he and Connie would go to the suggested city and do some onsite research to see if there would be enough to do. Please think about it and send your suggestions to them.

James Talbot said that he will be having t-shirts made up with the names of our departed Whiskey Battery members who were KIA. Contact James directly if you are interested in purchasing one of these t-shirts.

In Memoriam:

Russ Hicks read the list of deceased Whiskey Battery member names as Virgil Boyer rang the bell toll for each of the departed. Virgil stated that Ron Cummins had the bell made in Vietnam. Ron was told it was made using leftover brass and shells from Vietnam (though this fact has not been verified). Ron donated the bell to the battery to be used for future reunions. Russ Hicks stated that he is going to have the bell engraved with "In Memoriam of the Departed Whiskey Battery Members".

Melonie Carideo reviewed the activities planned for the rest of the day and info on the cruise that evening. She also stated that our annual reunion pictures would be taken in the conference room we were in immediately after the meeting.

Dale Millard gave a closing blessing.


Virgil Boyer adjourned the meeting at 10:40 AM.




Whiskey 1-12

Whiskey 1-12



Whiskey 1-12

Host of the Reunion


Host: Dick Stroud and Daughter Melonie

James Talbert

Ladies of Whiskey 1-12