All ASA Italy Reunion Cleveland 2002
2002 Cleveland, Ohio: reunion has happened. The photo album of the reunion activities follow the After-Action report.
After Action Report by Jim Moran (Ravenna Detachment)
2002 Reunion Held Near Cleveland: For two days in September, suburban Cleveland became the "war story" capital of Ohio as veterans of the 75th/600th ASA Company gathered to tell tales and renew old friendships at the 2002 annual reunion, held at the Holiday Inn in Independence.
With occasional accompaniment from a group of female barbershop quartet singers also meeting on the premises, seven 75th/600th veterans and three loyal, patient wives had a great time reliving memories of Aviano, Motel Romea, "the site," "the apartment," and other memorable places and people during the two-day gathering.
In typical Ravenna fashion events began both nights with drinks in Bob Giddens' room (nothing ever changes), then carried over to the downstairs bar, then dinner at two fine restaurants, and then back to the hotel for more adult beverages and war stories, some of them even based on fact.
In between there was some sight-seeing in beautiful downtown Cleveland. It was just like old times at the Motel Romea, but this time, there were no reports of anyone sneaking downstairs in the middle of the night in their underwear to get more Lowenbrau from the hotel bar.
We found that the years have little diminished our many memories of that happy, somewhat crazy period when, in addition to enjoying one of the best deals in the Army, we also pursued a serious mission for our country.
Those attending the third annual reunion were Bob Giddens, Millard "Mac"McKusick, Merle and Carol Houdek, Rich and Toni Anderson, Joe and Tiziana Daffner, Tom Harris and Jim Moran. Rich did a great job handling the arrangements with the hotel and restaurants. The Daffners, who live nearby, provided valuable insight and served as a good source of local information (and, perhaps wisely, left their Vecchio Romagna cognac at home). Tiziana, a proud and vivacious daughter of Ravenna, gave us a view of ourselves from the Italian perspective.
Those who didn't attend were not only missed, but also missed a great weekend. Next year's reunion will be held: where? Las Vegas has been proposed, as has Nashville, St. Louis and, of course, Ravenna. Please forward any suggestions to our web master and spiritual leader, Tom Harris. Ditto for offers to organize the next reunion.