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Troop Carrier/Tactical Airlift Association

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We just had our first \"official\" Troop Carrier/Tactical Airlift Association convention in San Antonio, Texas. Our main goal right now is to build the Association. Currently we have 102 dues-paying members and the goal is for each member to recruit at least three new members during the next year. Let me give you all a little bit about who we are.

Bob Layman, a retired USAF CMSgt who spent his career mostly in fighter maintenance, gave a Power Point presentation on his time at Tan Son Nhut as a crew chief on T-39s in the SCATBACK courier mission. Toward the end of his presentation he started talking about the mission over An Loc for which C-130 pilot Bill Caldwell and loadmaster Charlie Shaub were awarded the Air Force Cross. When Bob started to talk about mission three people in the audience - Hector Leyva, Ralph Bemis and Charlie Armistead, spoke up \"I was there.\" In short, every one of the other two airplanes in that formation was represented in the audience. Not only that, Ralph and Charlie are two of the five Silver Star holders who are members of our organization. The other three are Billie Mills, Phil Dibb and Don Strobaugh, a veteran combat control officer whose biography reads like a history of the troop carrier mission. Don also holds the Airman\'s Medal, the highest non-combat award given to a member of the Air Force for an act of valor. Our group also holds 35 DFCs, 6 Bronze Stars, 5 Purple Hearts and more Air Medals than you can count. In other words, joining the TCTAA will put you in good company. Our membership includes pilots, navigators, flight engineers, loadmasters, maintenance and aerial port troops and combat control.

The TCTAA is recognized as a not for profit wartime veterans organization, which means that as long as at least 90% of the membership is made up of veterans of World War II, Korea, Vietnam and the post-1990 period, all contributions are fully deductible as charitable donations. This gives us an advantage that many other veterans organizations do not have.

Membership applications are available either from our web site at www.troopcarrier.org/home.html.

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