MARINE CORPS TANKERS VIETNAM HISTORICAL Foundation's
Vietnam Personal Accounts
“Pappy’s” After Action Report on the 2009 Charlotte Charleston Reunion.
By Lloyd G. “Pappy” Reynolds © 2011
Well where do I begin?
I guess it all started when I got my reunion notice. My wife couldn’t go this
time so I contacted John about sharing a room. Once that was settled, the next
thing was to book a flight. So I got on the Internet and booked a round trip
flight to (yep you guessed it) Charlotte. I even looked on a map and thought
“That’s awful far from Parris Island, why are we staying there? Well you know,
men never ask for directions.
My flight left right on time. I transferred planes in Houston and arrived in Charlotte on time. Got my luggage and went to get a shuttle to the hotel. Told the driver I wanted to go to the Sheraton North. He said “You want to go where?” So I showed him my Schedule of Events. He says “We don’t go there. Your a city, state and about two hundred miles north.” After I checked my skivvies for unwanted residue I decided on plan “B” even though I didn’t know what that was. I called my wife to give her the news and a good laugh at my expense. Then I reviewed my options. Can I get a flight to Charleston, should I try to rent a car, can I go Greyhound, (didn’t thing of a one way U Haul). I went for the Greyhound. A $25.00 cab ride got me to the Greyhound Station. Next bus didn’t leave until 0800 the next morning. Now a Greyhound Depot is not a place you want to hang around without at least a squad of armed Marines, especially at night. On the sidewalk outside the depot I called my wife again to tell her of my woes (good thing she didn’t go, I’d still be in the Charlotte Emergency). The taxi drivers hung around like vultures. Then it started “I’ll take you to Charleston for $350.00, another said $340.00. The bidding had started. No bids were submitted after it reached $280.00, so I said let’s go. I loaded up for the three hour two hundred and seven mile taxi ride. The driver and I got to know each other pretty well by the time we got to Charleston.
When we got to the hotel a cheer went up from those that knew me, “Hey Pappy’s here, you finally made it.” Then “why did you take a taxi, they have a shuttle from the Airport?” Then as I was peeling off fifties to pay the cabby some one said “That much, where did you come from?” The driver said “Charlotte.” The cat and my stupidly was out of the bag! Might as well own up to it. As soon as Wally Young found out, I knew it was over.
At the first meeting I just had to get up and give everyone the straight scoop, as I knew being Marines it would get blown up all out of shape. But also as Marines, they take care of there own (even the stupid one’s) some one said “Let’s pass the hat for Pappy.” Well the hats were passed and when they were emptied at my table I thought I was at the final table of the “World Poker Tour”. It came out to $622.00. I couldn’t believe it. What a great bunch of Marines. The overage of $342.00 was turned in to Jim Coan our Treasurer. I was warned not to try this as a fund-raiser in San Diego.
For the rest of the reunion I got a lot of attention, like: “Don’t let Pappy on the first bus, we’ll wind up in Charlotte.” “Which way is it to Charlotte?” “The next reunion is in San Diego, do you know how to get there?” “Are you the one doing the Map Program?” And on it went until “How are you going to get home?” I had a lot of input for that one. But again a Marine Tanker stepped up to the plate. Russell Tingle “Tang” from Louisville, KY volunteered to drive me to Charlotte on his way home. Then I had to break the bad news to him. My flight left Charlotte at 0600 and we would have to leave around 0130 to make it on time. To his credit he didn’t bail out on me. I caught my flight on time and made it home. Much to my wife’s relief. She would have killed me if I had wound up in San Francisco.
Semper Fi Marines and thank you.
You really have to embellish the story!
After passing the Hat's.
|Counting the loot ("donations").|