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VMB-613 Squadron Insignia

Marine Bombing Squadron Six-Thirteen



45 Verano Loop

Santa Fe, NM 87508-3151

(505) 466-6549

Front View of PBJ

5 December 2005

Memo To: All The Santa Claus Participants

Merry Christmas and A Happy New Year!

Foster Cummings says hello to all.  He had his annual Marine Corps celebration at his home on the 5th of November with approximately 25 plus attending, several of them Marines, Joe McDonald and Rita were there as were John and Doris Siergewicz representing VMB 613. 

On the 8th of November, Foster attended the Semper Fi U.S. Marine Corps Birthday Celebration in Boston.  The Commandant of the Marine Corps was the guest speaker and there were approximately 3500 Marines in attendance.

Foster has been in contact with Lester Robinson and said that all is well with him.  Lester is a baseball player of great renown and Foster said that they exchanged quips about the various major league baseball teams and which one was superior to the other.

Foster had an opportunity to see some of The VMB 613 webpages and noticed a picture of Bernie Dowd in the Radio Man's compartment (or interior of plane) the person in the background was identified as Foster but he couldn't recall the picture and wasn't sure if it was him.  I printed the picture but couldn't recall who gave me the negative so if any one else sees the picture try to determine who the Marine in the back ground is.

Jim and Mary Jane Lewis say Merry Christmas to all.  They have been busy with local events keeping them mentally and physically alert.  In addition planning for the Christmas celebrations take up a lot of their spare time.

Ed Alling sends his seasons greetings.  He is very enthused over the VMB 613 website and said that he has sent a message to Robert Yanacek extolling his efforts in establishing a great site.

John Aymen says hello and regards to all.  He is continuing to feel better all the time but still has some problems walking without the use of a cane or walker.  Hence he takes his time while walking and limits the walking to short distances.  This way he can maintain his balance while trying to learn how to walk again.  He is still in the process of taking chemo treatments and has to undergo testing for other potential problems.

Harlan Jason says hello and regards to all.  He continues to keep his physical problems under control but realizes that he will never run the 220 for quite some time.  We spent time reminiscing about the closing hours at Kwaj and the various assignments that squadron personnel were given to close down the squadron.  His memories were very interesting and humorous.  He remembered when our utilities, shoes and socks just about disintegrated and no replacements were available until the Sea Bees came up with a great re-supply.  These lasted until the Corps was able to divert USMC personnel clothing to our unit.  When he was assigned to detail at the QM section after the close of hostilities he became involved in the repacking of Marine Corps utilities, socks and shoes for trans-shipment to other organizations.  He often wondered who ended up wearing them.

He also repacked several dozen Thompson sub machine guns and to this day he wonders whether they ended up in Kwajalein Lagoon or some other elite body of water. 

Bob Polakowski sends his Christmas Greetings to all.  He said that Foster Cummings had sent him a lot of Marine Corps material to read and it is really great to receive it and read it.  He knows a few Marines who are not on any list to receive up to date Marine Corps information so he shares it with them, and it makes them very enthusiastic to read it.  They re-read several times just to make sure that they didn't miss anything.

Gerry and Peg Gutshall let us know a short while ago that they were going to sell their home and move and it happened.  They sold their house within three hours of listing which meant that they really had to scramble to find a new place to live and they found a two bedroom apartment where they are now ensconced.  They went on a Caribbean Cruise last spring to celebrate her 80th birthday.  It was a better ship than the G.W. Julian and they enjoyed the change of scenery.  Gerry has had two eye operations to have cataracts removed and is doing well.  He has stayed on his regimented six day a week routine at the Health Club.  Peg reported that she had a slow heart rate and low blood pressure and this past August had a pacemaker installed which regulated her entire system and she is now feeling fine.

Jim "Red" Nelson called to say hello and regards to all.  He commented that the weather has been great and he hopes it continues for awhile longer.  All continues well with him as long as he doesn't try to do too much physical work.

Stan and Peach Richardson sent their regards to all.  They have been on the road visiting and are now back at home.  Stan has been having breathing problems and as a result he has to be on "02" oxygen most of the time, which really means all of the time.  At their senior quarters he has become an avid bridge player which keeps his mind working at a rapid speed at all times.

Mike Jacus says hello and regards to all.  He has been busy around the house catching up on required maintenance which hasn't let him get too far away.  One of his main efforts has been the review of photos from VMB 613 Ordnance section and endeavoring to put names with faces.  Constant reviewing and the thinking of events on the flight line and in the Ordnance Compound does help in arriving at the identity of the members.  These will be on the website in the near future for all to see.

Received an email via a friend of Howard W. Smith who said that he was in VMB 613.  He was inquiring about a reunion of the squadron.  I sent him an e mail of our reunion questionnaire and requested that he complete it and return it.  I checked the roster in our webpage and it listed a Howard W. Smith as an Armorer, Aircraft.  He signed the e-mail as Howard W. Smith, SGT USMC Retired.  Hope that this brings back memories to members of the Ordnance Department.

For several years I have had a repository for pieces of our lost aircraft over Ponape and working with Fred Staren we endeavored to locate personnel to forward selected items to them.  Recently, I sent a mechanical aircraft accessory part to Susan (Stone) Clare.  She responded that "the airplane piece you sent - what a gift".  Thank you very much.  Like you I'm not sure what to do with it, but I know I'm glad that kept it all those years.  I'm glad to have it.  Now what - wonder what a metal sculptor or artist might create around it or with it?  It could become a piece within a piece or such - to display.  What a treasure.

Received word from a Marine (Eric Sperger) who has been researching VMB squadrons as a hobby that the following book is available:

Bound for Action in WWII by John Hughes.  Cost $13.00 including shipping.  Request your copy at:

John O. Hughes Radar/Gunner VMB 614

18 Carrollton Court

Little Rock, AK 72211

Phone: 501-221-3500

Eric Sperger has spoken to the author and said that he is very nice to talk to.  He mentions his Boot Camp experience in 1942 and the various schools and technical training that he had to undergo.

Wilda Chappell sent along a message wherein she conveyed the appreciation of the family for the flowers and many expressions of sympathy.

The VMB 613 "Mystery Picture" -  Hopefully you folks are busy studying the picture that the Stone family sent us.  Trying to identify the people in the picture and the name of the island would be of great help to fill out some of our squadron history.  The picture had to have been taken between the time our planes landed in December 1944 and early February 1945.  Check your log books and/or any other documents you may have on file and possibly find a lead.

Thomas Stone Mystery Photograph


Received word that Frank Robinson passed away on 4 November.  He had been in the hospital for a few weeks and passed away in his sleep due to a diabetes problem.


Robert Yanacek, our webmaster, has been able to increase the amount of web site storage space to 200MB.  With other technical features available it is now possible to double the content.

He has been devoting time to the transfer of the squadron's Aircraft Action Reports from one type of computer recording files to another to another.  This allows greater flexibility for visitors to gather information contained in the reports.  To date he has retyped the original reports preserving the original format, spellings, punctuations and grammar.  He noticed that whoever wrote them in 1945 used a number of British spellings on certain words.

Robert is awaiting responses from members who are reviewing some photos to endeavor to identify members.

Alan Carey, author of Leatherneck Bombers, had a page on his website for VMB-613 and is posting some basic information regarding the unit.  The link to this information is below:

The VMB 613 website has received two more awards which include the Platinum Award from the Lagoon View Yacht Club and one from the Royal Netherlands Marine Corps (Dutch Marines).

Remember that our new fiscal year started in January 2005.  If there isn't an (04) or higher two digit number appearing after your name on the mailing label on your envelope you should mail a check to us made out to VMB 613 in the amount of $20.00 for payment of dues.

Note: (04) denotes 2004, (05) denotes 2005.  Many thanks to the members who have already sent in their dues checks.


THE LIMITED EDITION COLLECTORS ITEM, the squadron logo hat pin is still available for VMB 613 members and friends.  This pin is an inch in diameter and comes in a pewter finish or gold plated with a hand painted finish.  The colors are similar to the colored logo that was mailed out several months ago. Marine Corps Scarlet Red background, Gold Wings, Black Cannon and Maces.  Plus it is made in America.

Pewter finish logo hat pin - $4.50

Hand painted finish logo hat pin - $5.50

A new item is the license plate frame.  It is a composition material (special plastic) with a red background and gold lettering. The top of the frame has U.S. MARINES and the bottom VMB 613 WWII.  The cost is $5.00 INCLUDING PACKING AND SHIPPING.

USMC Heat Transfer Kit.  Has 6 large insignias and 6 small insignias.  Can use on caps, T shirts or any other cloth item.  These kits are $3.95 each.     

We still have the small VMB 613 number plate for the rear window at $5.00 each.  These now can be ordered with either a WHITE or RED background. 

The regular size VMB 613 license plate complete with mounting hardware is now available on special order for $20.00.

We have a limited number of Red VMB 613 caps, the cost is $10.00 each and are being sold on a first-order, first-serve basis.

These memorabilia items can be ordered from Charlie Knapp.

Please continue the notes or letters all of which help to make the monthly letter more interesting. 

This is all for now.  Stay healthy.

Semper Fi,

Signature of Charles Knapp



For security reasons, changes to the roster are not available on-line.  Please contact Charlie Knapp for address information.


A directory of e-mail addresses for members is available on-line in a password protected area of the site.  Please contact our webmaster to obtain your password. 

Note: Please check your address on the listing and let me know of any required corrections.  Some messages have been returned with a comment "unknown address."


Copyright 2008 Marine Bombing Squadron Six-Thirteen Association.  All Rights Reserved.