Tailhook Convention held in Reno, NV. It was very informative and gave us a chance to renew old friendships and start new relationships. This year the focus was “JOs, The Tip of the Spear”. Generally, Ray and I attend to roundup contact information on future speakers for GPS. At the same time we attend a number of panels that are available to everybody.
You can watch the 2015 Tailhook Convention Panels on-line. For those of you who could not attend in person this year, the Reunion Symposium Briefings are still available on-line for your viewing pleasure. Here is the video link: http://livestream.com/wab/tailhook2015. All of the panels were informative, but it has been recommended by others and we concur that at the least you should watch the following panels: The Aviation Flag Panel, Junior Officers in Combat, VX-23 Magic Carpet – Carrier Landing Brief.
Also, on Friday there were updates by industry leaders such as Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon and Huntington Ingalls Industries Shipbuilding. It surprised us that the riefing by Northrop Grumman on the X-47B was not as thorough as the briefing that we received when we toured the F-18 line the previous week.
On Saturday we attended the RADM “Jig Dog” and Ginger Ramage Recognition Luncheon. We saw a number of old friends and missed some others. At our table was Diz laird from the Old San Diego ANA Squadron (Diz shot down both German and Japanese aircraft in WWII), Marv Garrison who needs no introduction, and Zip Rausa (who flew ADs in Vietnam, is Editor of Wings of Gold Magazine, and is a published author). It was a very distinguished crowd and another $6000 was raised for the Educational Foundation with the simple act of passing the hat at the luncheon.
That night we attended the Tailhook Banquet. The guest speaker was ADM Scott “Notso” Swift, Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet. Sitting at our table was Dave Thornhill, an old friend and an A-4 pilot from Vietnam. Nearby was Kathy and Hans Schmoldt, the folks who are responsible for the very successful Colorado Tailhook Ready Room located near NAS Grand Junction.