Saturday - October 18th
Sunday - October 19th
Friday - October 17th
Thursday - October 16th
You may not be all excited about seeing us, but we sure as hell are excited at the prospect of seeing you again. Let’s face it, some of our tales and memories don’t kick in until we hear a familiar voice from 40 years ago or get caught off guard by someone else's version of a story you’ve always seen differently. Bring a significant other. Bring the family. Bring your pen and pocket notebook, because there will be lots of stuff you will want to follow up on. There’s no class distinction, no layered degrees of importance. If you were a janitor who did nothing more than sweep the halls and keep our ashtrays empty, you were part of the mission and you deserve to be there for the goodies and camaraderie. If Pat or Adrian or Roger walk through the door, they aren’t there as celebrities. They are there as alumni of a very, very special group that once brought a touch of home to those 58,000-plus people whose names stretch through the years on that damned dark wall in Washington. Last time we had folks show up who thought they didn’t belong because they weren’t talent, or because they weren’t officers, or because they only played “a small role” for AFVN. Listen up, folks. No one played a “small role.” Every one of us, from the Conex dwelling supply moles to the “extras” who brought us voices from the Red Cross or the Big Red One or MACV or from Oz or from the land of Kiwis -- every one of us was simultaneously completely replaceable and incredibly indispensable. We may begin making reservations on November 1st, 2013. I will begin peppering the site with information and updates as we get closer to the end of this month. Remember, friends, that we have reached that part of our lives where we attend more funerals than weddings. Whosoever will may come.
The above is a plea to come while the following is a reaction to having attended in 2012.
I went to Memphis knowing I would only know a few people I was in Saigon with; left Memphis
knowing all and now have a face to some of the names in this group. Well done to all of us!
October 16 (Thursday) through October 19 (Sunday), 2014.
(To the best of the Webmaster's knowledge as of October 3, 2014.)
October 16 to 19, 2014 -- San Diego, California
The reunion was a resounding success thanks to the efforts of Joe Ciokon and Ken Kalish.
Holiday Inn Bayside, San Diego CA
(or Holidiay Inn San Diego - Bayside -- Both names are on their website.)
4875 North Harbor Drive
San Diego, CA 92106
Tel: (619)-224-3621 or (800)-650-6660
On the web, go to www.holinnbayside.com/ or to
When calling for a reservation, mention that you are attending the AFVN
(Armed/American Forces Vietnam Radio and Television Network) reunion.
An advance deposit or credit card guarantee for the 1st night's room and tax is due by September 25, 2014.
Reservations received after September 25, 2014 will be provided on a space available basis.
If the Group Rate is not available after the cutoff date, the prevailing rack rates will apply for reservations confirmed.
NOTE: At one point the hotel was thought to be the Wyndham Bayside--that was in error!
Single or Double: $115 + 12.4% tax or $129.49/night
For those who are early or stay afterwards, this rate is good for three nights before until three night after the reunion.
(The normal rate is $183.49/night.)
Registration and Payment
The registration fee is $50.00 per group, while the cost of the dinner is $35.00 (per person).
Payments for optional tours, etc. will have to be made in advance.
Visit to the aircraft carrier, USS Midway -- Saturday, October 18th.
Tickets are complimentary, courtesy of Joe Ciokon.
Please fill out the registration form and mail it, along with a check, as follows:
Payable to Ken Kalish, AFVN Reunion
18671 Co. 81
Park Rapid, MN 56470
The registration form is available here as a: MS Word.DOC or a PDF file.
You can walk from the hotel to the USS MIDWAY, the Embarcadero, Seaport Village, and the Fish Market restaurant.
Next door is a Ruth's Chris steakhouse and across the street is Anthony's Fish Grotto.
Also across the street and to the right of Anthony's, is the Maritime Museum with the Star of India sailing vessel,
the HMS SURPRISE and CALIFORNIAN sailing ships, the steam ferry SS BERKELEY,
the decommissioned submarine USS DOLPHIN, and a Soviet B-39 attack sub.
We may use a van or shuttle to go to different sites, such as the Veterans Village of San Diego
and for a windshield tour of the Naval Air Station North Island, home port to the
USS RONALD REAGAN (CVN 76) and the USS CARL VINSON (CVN 70)
SeaWorld is Offering Half-Off Admission
SeaWorld in San Diego, Calif. will offer half off admission for those who are in or have served in the military, along with up to five companions. Those who qualify must be on active duty, retired or honorably discharged. Tickets must be purchased by Nov. 11, Veterans Day, and redeemed by Dec. 21. To purchase tickets, visit the Military.com Discount Center or buy tickets at participating military bases. SeaWorld requires proof of service to qualify for the discounts. Discounts offered in the "Waves of Honor" program do not include Discovery Cove in Orlando or Aquatica, SeaWorld's Waterpark.
For more travel and amusement discounts, visit the Military.com Discount Center.
[This linkrequires one to sign-up]
A complimentary hospitality room and a one-hour welcome reception will be
providedif at least 20 rooms are reserved on the peak night.
We will have a room with round tables for our get-togethers in the Point Loma Room.
Except for the dinner on the 18th, We can bring are own beverages.
Complimentary in-house AV will be provided for use in the hospitality room and banquet.
Complimentary parking will be provided.
Complimentary Airport Shuttle Service is available 24 hours a day and can be arranged
by calling the hotel at 619-224-3621 after you have retrieved your luggage.
Questions, Special Needs, etc.
Please direct all questions, and information on special needs, etc. to Ken Kalish.
Special needs include any physical and dietary problems.
San Diego VA Hospital
This is perhaps a unique topic to add to a reunion information site. However, none of us are getting any younger and, while we all hope we will continue to get older for many more years to come--one never knows the future. A further impetus is that Ken Kalish has been to reunions during which medical emergencies have come up and I'm sure that all of us like to be prepared. Therefore---
The San Diego VA Hospitals phone number is (858) 552-8585. The Emergency Room is extension 3028. However, if 911 is contacted and someone taken away via ambulance, they'll go to the nearest hospital.
From Ken Kalish (paraphrased slightly): The VA contact is not for immediate assistance in an emergency. If one needs prescription meds for whatever reason, the walk-in wait while having records retrieved is more than an hour. The drive to the VA from Bayside is half an hour. I know because I [Ken] went through the process. Also, if one of us does wind up in an emergency, the VA must be notified so the patient can be sent to the VA as soon as the person is stabilized. I will check with the VA there to see if providing names, last 4, and DOB in advance would smooth the way through any service our group may need.
(From a friend of Jim White's who worked in an office at the VA San Diego hospital for a number of years) "They try to bend over backwards to help vets. Of course, by law they have to treat anyone with choking, bleeding or apparently having a cardiac arrest or stroke. A retiree ID card will get one in without much trouble. For those who did not retire and who have never enrolled in the VA and don't have a copy of their DD214 on them, they would be treated as a 'humanitarian.' The bill will be $300. But should they enroll asap that would go away. [Also] Walk in meds would only be available to those already enrolled in the VA system."
Again, as done for the 2012 Reunion, an assististance fund will be established. Anyone wishing to donate may do so. Both donors and recipients will be anonymous, and donors wishing an accounting will be given one without any designation of to whom payments are made. No negative feedback from the 2012 Reunion was received, but an audit of the the fund can be arranged if the donors wish. If you want to donate but are uncomfortable with this method, please look over last year's attendance list or look at the photo on the last page of the 2012 Reunion Rock PDF. Several individuals who joined us could not have made the trip without a bit of help. Imagine what the that photo and the other pictures would have looked like without half a dozen of those faces. If you're still uneasy after that, please don't donate. If you need assistance, please contact Ken Kalish.
Donations to the Assistance Fund may be made by US$ check as follows;
Payable to Ken Kalish, AFVN Reunion
18671 Co. 81
Park Rapids, MN 56470
You should receive an acknowledgement and/or receipt by email within 48 to 72 hours.
Any and all amounts, large or small, will help your fellow AFVN Veteran.
Coordinator & Publicity: Ken Kalish
Hospitality: Dick Ellis
Local Coordinator: Joe Ciokon
VIP Invitations: Bob Nelson
Remember, everyone, "Whomsoever will come, may come."
Point Loma RoomOpen for anyone to collect items left from the previous night.
from 08:00 to 11:30 a.m or until everything is removed.
Tour of the USS Midway Tickets courtesy of Joe Ciokon 10:00 a.m. to 17:00 p.m.
(As long or as short as you want to make it.)
Buffet dinner 18:00 to 22:00 California Room
No-host beer & wine bar
Ti-tip steak and
grilled chicken breast
in wide mushroom
Baby reds brushed
with garlic butter
Rolls & butter