Gathering of VPI Calgary, Fri 6 Oct 06.
1. E/On @ 1130 (opened by Don &
Austin – first to belly-up)
2. In Attendance: Austin Hayes (at long last, after a year's absence), Don Little (never misses), Dan McLean (Encana stalwart who writes his own "time-off" sched), Garth Irvine (roads were open from Okotoks, as usual), and Mike Luxton (no longer beholden to the Queen's finest).
3. AWOL: Brian Kaban (on family outing to Jasper for Thanksgiving. Besides, after putting most of his money on last gathering's bar tab, he was running short of $$$), Dave Watson (a mysterious no-show, unless he's still vacationing down south), Bill Moir (unknown) and King Ralph (if you really want to know more about this guy, contact Reg McCurdy).
4. Attendance Observation: Even though our numbers are small, compared to our total listed membership we think we have the greatest percentage participation of all the VPI groups in Canada. Let's face it, even with only five sharing in military camaraderie, this represents a 62.5% participation rate. And, with only four, it's still 50%. You do the math! We challenge other Wings to beat this figure! Now, if only more VPIers would retire in Calgary . . .
5. Mike Luxton turns civil(ian): Our newest VPI inductee has taken his leave from the military (Recruiting Centre) and joined the ranks of the unemployed (kidding, of course). The appeal of living in Canada's western (possibly national) capital was so strong, he decided to remain here and start his own consulting company (Malabar Consulting Ltd). Already has aided United Way and has deep connections with Calgary ****** Region (*=TopSecret).
VPI YC wishes Mike the best of British in
his future endeavours.
6. Golf anyone? Although, nothing to do with this meeting, it would be remiss to not relate some details of a golfing outing that took place around the end of July at the Turner Valley course. Fearsome foursome consisted of two local pros (Garth Irvine & Don Little) and two elitist guests, first and foremost being Reg McCurdy (VPI HZ member and nomad supreme). Reg, as you might know, is well documented as a roving semi-pro (golf) who swings a mighty driver and who just happened to be visiting in the Calgary area. So, without being accused of verbal "d", the bottom line in this outing is that both Irvine and Little shot lower scores than McCurdy (pure modesty prevents me from specifying actual scores). Bottom line: FE and Nav topple Pilot.
7. King Ralph: If you remember, the minutes from the Tenth Gathering related that "King Ralph" was in attendance. Sorry to say, the verbiage was misconstrued by a certain wiseman from the east (no name calling here). Just to set the record straight, this "King" was not the one currently serving as Premier of Alberta.
8. Austin Hayes: Great to see our comrade from Cochrane join-in again. After a summer on the Shuswap and after many months of hip-replacement therapy, he was chomping to re-engage. Sad story here and too long to relate in these minutes, however, what he has endured over the past four years wouldn't be wished on anyone, especially this VPI member and maritime pilot of great renown. VPI Calgary extends good luck and best wishes to Austin for a full and speedy recovery.
9. Discussion time: Nothing new here. Still awaiting some news from VPI HQ as to proposed membership changes. Decision was to be made at the recent gathering in Kinloss. Perhaps HQ or VPI HZ can shed some light on this one.
Dan McLean still going strong at Encana, moving up the corporate ladder. Garth Irvine enjoying retired life in Big Rock and passing time at summer hockey camps with his son. Don Little still enjoying whatever comes his way and readying skis and skates for the winter months.
10. Sad news: On Sept 2nd, a Nimrod MR2 crew of 14 members were all killed when their aircraft crashed near Kandahar. The RAF reconnaissance plane was conducting surveillance ops and had just completed a mid-air refueling at 20000 ft. Technical malfunction is suspected. For full coverage and crew memorial details, you can link through the "Events Page" of our own website or click on: www.vpinternational.co.uk and then link to "120/3".
The members of VPI Calgary wish to extend their heartfelt condolences to the
families and loved-ones of our fallen comrades, Crew 3, 120 Sqn, Kinloss.
11. Website reminder: http://vpi.calgarywaterford.org
Webmaster: Dan McLean:
12. Next gathering: After some discussion it was decided that a December date will be difficult due to Christmas preparations and black-out dates in the Mess, so, for the next one –
Fri Jan 12th ('07) @ 1130-1330. Mewata
Armouries. Book it!
13. E/Off @ 1330
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