The last time we met as a group was Thursday, 13 February. Only six of us met on 12 March, after I cancelled the meeting due to COVID-19.
So much has happened since then!
Howard, the manager of the Garden Grove Elks’ Lodge, told me that they, too, have been closed since March. They plan on a limited re-opening on 17 June but meals at night only, no luncheons. They don’t know when they will open for group meetings. Now we sit back, wait patiently.
In the meantime, David Malmad has been busy collecting stories from our members and guest writers. We do hope that you are enjoying them. If you have a story to share, please send it to David at firstname.lastname@example.org.
While waiting for life to return to normal or the new normal, we have been attempting to contact all active ANA members via telephone. We have successfully re-engaged with members who have not attended a meeting in quite a while. We had some good conversations with friends who have been absent for years. It was great to touch base with them. On the other hand, regretfully, we found a number of names of members who have passed. Many messages have been left on voice mail so if you have not talked to us, please call or text me at 562.547.0780 or send an email to email@example.com. Make sure that we get a current telephone number.
Unfortunately, our membership has been dwindling over the last couple of years for a number of reasons. Bob Cashman, one of our members, reached out to The Curtis Lemay Chapter of the Air Force Association (www.afa.org), to see if there was any interest in joining us for luncheons in the future. Bob received a positive response from the President of that local AFA chapter. We will work on making this association of aviation-based groups a success that will keep GPS and AFA active for years to come. If you know of another group of like-minded individuals (aviation interests) that would be interested in joining us to meet for lunch and listen to speakers in Garden Grove, have them get in touch with me.
In closing, we did make presentations of Recognition Certificates, restaurant gift certificates/coupons, and USAA plaques to the NWSSB SOQs in May. We wish to thank Bill Thompson and Dave Franzen for making this event happen. As you may recall, we purchased for sailors, gift certificates from the local restaurants that were opened. Normally the restaurants give to the sailors, but we chose to help our long-time benefactors in their time of need. We are planning on SOQ awards for August whether or not we meet. We hope that all of the restaurants are open and doing great business but if not, we are prepared to buy gift certificates and coupons again.
‘Fair winds and calm seas’