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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

6 June 2005

Memo To: All The Flag Day Celebrants

Doc and Jane Protheroe have returned to Hilton Head after several months in Florida over seeing repairs to their condo.  Hopefully they will be able to do some recuperation in warm, sunny South Carolina.  They say hello and regards to all.

Doc sent along a newspaper clipping which told the story of an Iwo Jima Marine's son who went to Iwo to search for the truth about a battle the nation always has been intensely interested in.  His eye witness father was unwilling or unable to share any anything about it before he died at the age of 49.

This Marine's son (Michael) trained for the trip in the jungles of Saipan for a week and wore Marine gear, and used his father's own map to retrace his steps on Iwo Jima.  He returned with a vial of black "sand" and a piece of shrapnel from the beach.  He also returned with a new peace, one helped by talking to survivors of the battle and their sons.

This article and the others that were published regarding Iwo Jima were all outstanding reading of the Marine Corps success in war time battle. 

Again many thanks to all who took the time to send along the various articles on Iwo over the last few weeks.

Another article described how the Marine Corps helicopter aviation units have for years been assisting in emergency search and rescue missions around Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort where they were called "Angel One".  Now all that type of U.S. Marine Corps effort has been cancelled due to high costs of maintaining the aircraft and the responsibilities will be assumed by the U.S. Coast Guard.

George Bartlett sends his best to all.  He reported that he was flying to Cherry Point in a B-25 to the air show in May and then plans to go to Oshkosh with them in July.

He received a great write up in the Sentry (May 8,2005) where he described his first mission aboard a B-25 (PBJ) which was a low level flight over one of the hot spots of the South Pacific.  Directly after the passing of the target, a 44mm cut loose at them filling the plane next them with bullets.  He knew then that it was going to be a long war. 

Check out the link below and it will take you right to the story from the SENTRY:

He had an opportunity to fly over Cherry Point air station with two pilots and a group of five young Marines.  He said when it fires up, I feel the same excitement just like I was 18.

As an attachment to this news letter is a Report of a B-25 Trip taken by George in October 2004 (Courtesy of MAG61 newsletter The Bugler).

Jim Garls says hello to all.  With the great spring weather he has started his Gentleman Jim The Farmer routine with the planting of tomatoes.  Hopefully the rain will fall and assist the plants in their endeavor to grow.  All continues well in Pekin he reported.  The warm weather has allowed him to mow the grass and remain active as an outdoorsman.

Bernard Simek called to say hello and send his regards to all. Although he hasn't been an active 613'er he has over the years maintained contact with several members at Christmas time.  He had been made aware of our webpage and wanted everyone to know that his granddaughter who has a computer has been reviewing all the material diligently.  Hopefully he will be able to meet her at home when she rearranges her schedule so that she can show him the various pictures of the squadron personnel, organizational sections/groups and Kwajalein itself.  He went onto say that since his discharge from the Corps he has been busy operating a bar and also an air conditioning and heating company.  His son is also in the business with him and they have kept busy for years.  Even though he is beyond retirement age he still finds the time to stay busy keeping abreast of the many design improvement changes to the various systems.

Carmine Nasta sends his best regards to all.  He continues to maintain a routine with the VA to help maintain his health status.  He has to walk with a cane which hinders him from trying to run the 220 and also helps in maintaining a careful pace while endeavoring to cross the streets on Staten Island.

He has been in touch with Ike Stern in an effort to identify squadron members in pictures from the various engineering organizations within 613.  Some names came to mind at once and others just wouldn't materialize.  Hopefully Ike will be able to continue pull names out of his memory bank to complete the identification of members.

He said that on his agenda are the calls to Walt Mathesen, Walt Gravello and Gene Hansen.  He reported that Gene is still active with the Baltimore Orioles and that Management has made his job a little easier by putting in elevators to move the baseball fans up and down the many flights to the seat aisles.

He reminisced about having the various Marine Football Teams RON at Cherry Point while he was there during the Korean War.  By having the teams stay at Cherry Point they were able to maintain a good practice schedule and get to the next opponents base ready to go out and play rather than figure out where they could get some rest.

While attending some of the games at other Marine Bases he met two of his brothers who were also in the Marine Corps.

Also spoke to John Aymen who sends regards to all.  They are now settled in their new Condo but he has to watch his physical activities.  He has been undergoing therapy for cancer which has slowed him down a bit so things he has wanted to do have to wait until he gets some energy under his belt.

George Comer reported in and said that he has been reviewing his pictures of 613 ever since he read that we were looking for a picture of Dave Snider and he located one during his search and sent it onto me.

Received a letter from Frank Noland which also included a picture of Dave Snider.  He too had been searching diligently and finally came across it.  The picture has been forwarded to Robert Yanacek for inclusion in the website.  Many thanks to George Comer and Frank Noland from all the members for their research in this matter and locating the picture of Dave.

George also sent along some information from the Marine Corps Heritage Foundation relative to the sale of bricks for the new building under construction at Quantico.

Bricks can be purchased at the cost of $300.00 per brick, each brick can contain a total of three lines, each line is 20 characters (includes spaces) in length. If the squadron wishes to purchase a brick let me know and come up with a suggested verbiage such as:

VMB 613

Memory of

The Ponape Mission  

Members are requested to give consideration to such a purchase and let me know what their thoughts are on the matter.

Heard from Chuck Cannato who says very best regards, good health and good luck to every body.  They have been very busy doing renovation work in their new duplex which has really kept him busy.  Hopefully things will be brought up to their new design standards and then he will be back sending and receiving e-mail.

John Gavin sends his best to all.  He and Grace will be celebrating their 55th anniversary real soon, so regards to both from VMB 613.  The weather has been outstanding in his area but he says that they need rain to keep the lawns looking like they should, nice and green.  In recalling events at Kwaj, he remembers being on duty at the Communications Section when the message came in that we would be leaving Kwaj for return to the United States.  It gave dates and other data that was required to get things started for the evacuation from Kwaj.

In looking through his files at home he came across pictures of Boris Karloff who came over to visit at the "Beer Hall".  He enjoyed the visit and said that Boris was one of the most pleasant individuals he had ever met and talked to.

Boris autographed a one dollar bill and a five dollar bill for him.  Some where along the line he had misplaced the five dollar bill but he still had the one dollar bill.  He sent it to the person who was instrumental in getting his high school class pin back to him and she donated it to the Kwajalein Museum for all to see.

In case members have forgotten John was swimming in the lagoon one day and his class ring slipped off into the lagoon water.  He had really forgotten about it until one day he received it in the mail.  The person who recovered the ring put a tracer on it back to his high school and they were instrumental in his recovering the ring.  The Readers Digest also had a short article on this recovery in one their issues.

He mentioned that when the government was dredging the lagoon for improvements the ring was spotted in the coral sand when it was being tipped into a barge.  The person really had good eyesight to spot the glitter and retrieve it.

On another occasion he met General Wainright who was at Kwaj on his trip back to Hawaii or the states.  He had the opportunity to speak to him for about one hour.  It was a great meeting and he really enjoyed talking to the General.

Frank Robinson says hello and regards to all.  He manages to continue his athletic movements but doesn't want to try and do the 220.  He's afraid his legs will freeze up if he does attempt it.

We were about to contact him to verify the names of a couple of players on the VMB 613 Squadron Basketball team but a member of the team looked at the picture and gave us the complete roster

Heard from Joe Yakawich who says hello to all.  He again endeavored to get a jump on spring by casting his line into the river but only got a few nibbles, no strikes.  Hopefully things will change in the near future.  He continues to maintain his production schedule in making models of air planes and with summer approaching, efforts also had to be directed toward gardening activities on his estate.  Two of his grandchildren recently graduated from college, Engineering degrees were received.  His son the Lt Colonel US Army continues to be on the move within the U.S. and over seas.  All efforts are towards making the Army more efficient in their world wide assignments.

Heard from Ed Alling who says hello and regards to all.  He sent along some pictures of 613 units which I will forward to our webmaster for inclusion on the website.

The picture that appeared in last months letter, sent by Homer Anderson to Kim Haddix he also sent along with names of the members that he recognized.

Homer Anderson reported that all is well with the Anderson family in Santee.  He sends regards to all our loyal members.

He reported on the picture that appeared in last months news letter and sent along some information on it.  The picture was taken at Kwaj and the structure that can be observed was the movie projection booth to the theater, plus the backs of the back seats are also visible.  The personnel in the picture are the main crew that built the theater.  Here are the names:

Back Row:  Ed Brais; E. Walker; George Gilman, and; Frank Haddix

Front Row: Homer J. Anderson; Troy Bohannon; Lt Cunningham; Bert Bader, and; Harold Riehle

There were two names he couldn't recall, the extreme right to Lt Cunningham, but some other squadron members identified them for us.  He went onto explain that Lt Cunningham was the Project Engineer and the mech-gunners whose names he passed onto us were the crew.  (Tsgt Bader and S/Sgt Riehle who were to right of Lt Cunningham were the projectionists when the operation was completed).  The crew was very diligent and they scrounged and "obtained" lumber from all over the island to build the booth and seats but they still managed to finish the project in record time. They were the main crew that built the theater.  Lt Cunningham wanted a picture of his loyal crew hence the picture.  Homer closed his letter with "hope this gives some answers to the "who" "what" and "where"

Many thanks to all other members who sent along their recollections of members names.

John Peterson says hello and regards to all.  He reported that Jane is still having health problems and has to visit with the MD's more often than she desires.  They did have a short spell when she felt great so they went on a trip to Zion and Bryce and back through Salt Lake City to Deer Lodge, MT and through Spokane.  While in Montana they went through a 150 mile snow storm which really made the trip interesting.  He sent along a 1948 Marine Corps Recruiting Brochure which hopefully I can enclose with this letter.

Frank Dudzik says hello and regards to all.  He endeavors to maintain Xmas contact with members but may occasionally miss one.  All remains well with him.  He continues to do construction work and has to remember to be careful of how he steps off.  Every now and then he misses a step or steps on the wrong pile of material and takes off flying.  He has had three major mishaps doing this which has really made him think twice at times before stepping off.

He remembers the trip to Boca Chica particularly the change in temperature.  From Cherry Point to Florida hot weather and flying in the aircraft the entire flight.

Vern Beggs and Anne send a hearty greetings to all.  They are both doing OK but are staying a little closer to home.

Gene Amber sends regards to all 613 members and said that it was great to hear about Doc Scott still moving about at his advanced age.  They have a golf pro (95 years of age) who comes from Scotland, brought in by Bobbie Jones, and played his first Masters many years ago.  He is still endeavoring to teach Gene how to swing.

Robert T. Jones III was a close friend of Gene's who hosted him at Augusta some years ago.  Unfortunately he died at age 47.

Bob Litzau sends his best to all.  In reviewing the VMB 613 squadron logos and reading of how to date no one knows who designed and painted the unofficial logo that we feel is the official logo it brought back memories to him as to whom might have been the artist.  Rather than mention his thoughts on the matter at this time, I will do some more G2 work with members and see if any thing comes up that solidifies his thoughts on the matter.

Bob also sent along some information on the members who were in the picture that was an enclosure to the last letter as an aid in identification.

Eric Sperger, a Vietnam-era Marine, has been doing research on Marine PBJ'S.  He sent along some information on a Washington DC PBJ Accident which took place 4 April 1944 at 1520 hours.  The aircraft belonged to VMB 613, MAG 62.  If anyone has any pertinent data on this accident send it along to me.  The BuNo was 35040 and two VMB 613 members were on board, the pilots were LtCol Stewart W. Ralston and Col Byron Johnson.  There was also a LtCol Klinke on board, as well as, Pfc Alvin Klinke and Corp Michael F. Pasachnik.

People that I have spoken to about this crash didn't think it was a VMB 613 aircraft.  It would be interesting to hear what members can recall about the incident and whether they think it was a VMB 613 aircraft.


Received word that William A. Gibson passed away in November 2004.  No other information was made available.


The VMB 613 Website has been evaluated by the American Association of Webmasters (AAWM).  The Association has been presented with the very prestigious AAWM "Gold Award."  This is an extraordinary award and out of 10332 web sites evaluated only 16.9% were awarded the "Gold Award".

Robert Yanacek said that it was a real privilege to accept this award on behalf of the members of Marine Bombing Squadron Six Thirteen.  This award has been posted on our website for all to see.

We received a compliment on our fine website from the son of a MAG 61 member Emmett B. (Skip) Sigmon, III who came across it while conducting research on MAG 61.  Emmett serves as volunteer in the Museum Restoration Program at the National Museum of the Marine Corps where they restore and maintain the artifacts that will ultimately go on display.

Robert Yanacek has also been able to get some more rosters from Headquarters Marine Corps and went into a tedious work phase to add members and identify them to the various department billets that they were attached to.  There are several names that he couldn't reconcile with squadron departments but hopefully future roster releases will have the info needed to do so.  He has added over 55 names to date to our complete squadron roster from the new rosters.

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.