Category Archives: Infantry OCS

Happy Veterans Day

Members of the old Sixth Platoon of OC 504-68. Infantry Officers Candidate School, at Fort Benning, Georgia. This was before about half dropped out, but veterans all.

Ice Storm

Nailed us in Oklahoma City, ice everywhere with a little snow and temps in the 20s. Farther west, where we were planning to go, the worse it got. Worst of all at our destination: Higgins in the Texas panhandle, and OCS buddy Russ Wheat’s grave, where the snow was more than a little and the temps in the teens.

So we stayed in the hotel, where three nights and two days in bed was quite fun. And Amtrak was enjoyable, as usual. Had a roomette where the conductors brought our meals. Got back to find that ice on the local lines caused a power outage which killed the furnace. So was a mite chilly until we got it going again. We’ll try again in April.

Sleet

Looks like bad weather Sunday and Monday for our trip to Higgins and Russ’s grave. Cold with possible sleet. We’ll have to drive slowly enroute from Oklahoma City. But getting to OKC should be comfortable by Amtrak.

Hotel Reservations

Made our hotel reservations the other day for our Amtrak trip to Oklahoma City on the 25th. From there we’ll drive a rental to Higgins, in the Texas Panhandle, to see and photograph Russ Wheat’s tombstone. Which we had planned to do back in March, until the Chinese Communist Party’s virus intervened.

Takes about three hours to drive it, but Bar and I will enliven the trip with talk. With her seven to five work schedule five days a week, we don’t get much chance of that.

UPDATE: Now it seems we have another couple that wants to go. My OCS classmate Charlie Button and his wife. We’re coordinating it.

Transition: Chuck Waldron

I was sorry to hear of my old Army friend Charles V. Waldron’s passing, but glad he was in hospice, as was my departed wife Mrs. Charm. I’m sure they took good care of him.

I knew Charles in basic, ait and OCS, plus as new platoon leaders in the Sixth Armored Cavalry Regiment at Fort Meade, Maryland, which included guarding President Nixon’s 1969 inauguration.  In Vietnam we shared advisory assignments but at opposite ends of the country.

We met again at the Fort Benning reunion in 2003 where we shared a room and I learned of his COPD problem. I’ll remember him as being smarter about volunteering than me, when he missed out on shoveling coal into barracks boilers at Benning waiting for OCS to start. He tried to talk me into going Airborne but to no avail and we missed that one together. Grief is hard, even after years of it, but it does get easier, I told his widow. So take good care, I suggested, and you’ll see him again in your dreams. 

And, as a well-wisher at his memorial page put it: He sees every tear and walks with you every step of the way. Couldn’t have said it better myself.

Joseph J. Grano

Here’s our former OCS Tactical Officer, a self-made millionaire and acknowledged Wall Street titan, discussing his 2009 book on C-SPAN that year.

https://www.c-span.org/video/?289532-1/you-predict-hero

The title of the book is very apt, for him, too, since none of us could have predicted what he’d become. For instance, his 2016 sale of his 30,000-square-foot estate for $45 million.

https://www.nj.com/realestate-news/2016/09/new_jersey_most_expensive_home.html

“Property taxes on the estate are $123,203 a year.”

Congratulations, Lieutenant, and former Candidate, yourself.

Do they still say Lady’s Gun?

Or purse gun, of about a .32 caliber, preferably in a revolver, so the lady in question doesn’t have to learn how to unjam a semi-auto. You might have a misfire but you just pull the trigger again to choose a new round and fire it.

Such is the conversation I’m having with an OCS chum who is a former prosecutor who prefers 9mm pistols. Bit too much recoil for the lady in question, unless you get an expensive one.

While I’m trying not to think about what may happen in a few months if the election results (in-person mixed with mail-in) are delayed by more than a week. Would we know the results by Xmas?

If it’s not close, they can’t cheat, is a truism that ought to energize both sides. If it is close, it may be months before we know the final result, and wonder whether we can trust it.