Christmas Food Drive: Tom Melgares, Chair. Start scrounging food for the boxes. Drop off donations at the VFW 12 and 13 DEC -Packing day 14 December, 5-9 pm. Committee = Sam, Greg, Chuy and Al. Need to find more schools to assist –letters were sent to 4 schools -letters are available if you want to take them to possible donors. Cutoff date to order boxes is 30 NOV.
Chapter Flag: Tom Melgares Chair -–Committee -Jerry, Pablo and Hugo. Chapter voted to buy the flag at $795 and to have the charity portion of the cost go to the Montagnards.
2017 1st SF Group Reunion, El Paso: Ike Camacho –Chair. Committee –Gus, Chuy, Duke, Steve, Leo, Jerry and Bill. Dates proposed are 5-10 June 2017. This will be the 3rd time that Chapter 9 has hosted the 1st Group. Anchor hotel is the Chase Suites for $69, full registration is $120 until 15 May, then it will be $140 (Hospitality Room only is $50). Banquet will be at the Marriott. Registration forms went out in August and the information was sent to the DROP. You can also contact Ike at firstname.lastname@example.org.
SFA 9 Christmas Party: Scheduled for 10 December with the meet and greet starting at 1800, dinner at 1900 and entertainment starting at 2000ish. Tony, Martha and the Villa band will provide the entertainment. Trini and the ladiesfrom the VFW Aux will run it this year. Members and 1 guest are no charge –extra guests are $10 each. Motion by Chuck for $4000 max expenses –passed.
Donations: Pete decided to discuss the donations vote from last month since he was not present. Update is that any donation over $1000.00 requires an email, since the board has the authority to approve expenses of $1000 or less.
2018 SFA National Conference –El Paso: Chair, Brian Kanof; Committee Bill, China Boy and Joe Kerwin JR. The best date for the City seems to be between 11-17 June, 2018. We may cut the days down to 5 or 6 from 7 as in the past. SFA 80 will assist. Brian plans to reach out to some other military and Veteran groups for assistance. Brian will give us a meeting plan, but he asked the members to start seeking $5K sponsorships now.
A Co 5/19th SFG Troop pre-deployment party: Chapter voted to spend up to $1000 to host a party for their 85 men who are preparing for a OCONUS deployment. Their SGM, Hank Eylicio spoke. He is a former member of SFA 9 and now belongs to SFA 78 in California. Hank is also a US Border Patrol BORTAC member. Party was held on 8 November at 1730 hrs and lasted way into election night. Leo gave each member a special Native American blessing with the burning fragrance and an Eagle Feather. The unit passed the hat (at their request) and gathered $409 to support the chapter. We may have another function when they return in 6 months.
U.S. Border Patrol Special Operations Group (USBP SOG) Expo scheduled: SOG Expo, our major fundraiser is scheduled for 3-4 May, 2017.
Wreaths Across America: Debbie Torres, CAP Chair. Event = Saturday, 17 December at 10:00 am –FT Bliss Cemetery. Chapter reviewing the list in November but we will pay for all SF and prior SFA 9 Members and spouses who are interred, as usual. Members can purchase wreaths at $15 each for non-SF. Questions call Debbie at 915 207-2231.
Pack 58 Pinewood Derby Track: Pack 58 sent a request for SFA 9 to buy them a new track for $1700. Chapter voted to authorize $500 but directed Bill and Steve to find out more information. A meeting with the Cubmaster determined that the old track, which SFA 9 purchased about 6 years ago, just needs repairs. He will get back to us with the repair quotes.
MAJ Chester Garrett: Steve announced that MAJ Garrett received the Distinguished Member of the U.S. Army Special Forces Regiment (DMOR) honors, posthumously, at FT Bragg -on 28 October. SFA 9 has 2 other members who were inducted into this elite group in the past –Isaac Camacho & Billy Waugh.
SF Room at the VFW: Chapter discussed hanging the plaques and items we have. Leo suggested a Native American section. Committee was formed –Chair Tom Brady, Committee Leo, Brian, Chuck and Al.
Chapter member Tommy Buchino (SGM ret) lost his bid for County Sherriff runing against an incumbent Democrat Sheriff in a largely Democrat region. Chapter Member Sam Morgan is running again for City Council on 18 May.
Chapter President's Message:
As winter approaches, we start our transition not only to pants, coats and heaters but also the food drive, wreaths across America and the Christmas party. As listed above we have pledged Chapter funds for the 21stannual food drive but we do not have the support of the schools as in the past.
Think about it, we’ve been doing this food drive for 21 years and have alwayssecured SOME help from outside sources but it doesn’t look good for us this year. I ask EVERYONE from Chapter 9 to support this by donating non-perishable goods or making a cash donation. Also, talk to stores that you frequent and ask them for donations. Ask friends, family, co-workers and neighbors to help with this worthy cause. For those who do take boxes, we do not want to give less than we normally do and we DO NOT have a quota for boxes. If 50 or 150 boxes are requested, that’s what we pack so please support this.
The other item that needs to be addressed is the committee heads for the 2018 National Convention. At the last meeting Brain had asked for volunteers and I don’t believe we had anyone stand up. The convention is in 2018 but we only have until June of2017 to get the plan at a 80-90% solution that’s when we have to brief the master plan at the 2017 SFA National Convention. Issues like hotels, transportation, venues, cost, etc. need to be ironed out so please get with Brain and do you part. Hopefully we can get some of our Chapter 9 members not in El Paso to come help.
Last but not least, our Chapter Christmas party is scheduled for 10 December at the VFW Post 812. As stated above, the Chapter member and one guest (this includes spouses of past members and 1 guest) are free. Your invited guest will cost $10.00. We have Tony, Martha and the Villa band for entertainment so it will be a great time. This is the time of the year where we get to see old friends and make new ones. As always, thank you for your support and friendship.
President, SFA Chapter IX