Notice to all Former Arc Light - Young Tiger Association Members

The Arc Light – Young Tiger Association as an independent association has ceased to exist.

    Due to the declining membership numbers, a motion was passed at the 2017 Arc Light – Young Tiger Association reunion in Omaha to approach the board of the B-52 Stratofortress Association to explore options to merge our group with theirs. As a lead-in to this, we elected to meet with their group at their 2018 Rendezvous at Barksdale and to do so one day earlier than their scheduled dates to allow an extra day for meetings and fellowship.

    On their website they state: “We bring together all those who have been or are associated with the BUF—designers and builders, aircrew, maintainers, enthusiasts — to exchange memories. We try to help old buddies find each other -- anything it takes to keep alive the history of the weapon known in its early days as ‘America’s Long Rifle.’”

    On 15 August 2017 at a general AL-YT membership meeting of those who attended the Barksdale reunion it was decided to go ahead with the planned merger. Attending members voted to use the remaining funds in the AL-YT account to purchase two memorial benches (one at the SAC Museum and one at the Museum of the Air Force) to preserve the history and the memory of those who participated in the Vietnam strategic B-52 bombing and KC-135 refueling campaigns.

    A committee comprised of Johnny Johnson, Russ Stevenson, and Tommy Towery met with the B-52 Association board on 18 August and presented our proposal which was unanimously approved. In effect the previous Arc Light – Young Tiger Association has become a “flight” or similar sub-group of the B-52 Stratofortress Association. The only requirement to join their association is an interest in any aspect of the B-52 and maintaining an active membership. Therefore, the AL-YT dues will no longer be collected and instead the $20 per year dues will now be paid to their group instead of ours. Joining will give each member all the benefits offered to their members and the opportunity to participate in their future reunions as well. Potential plans calls for an extra day to be added to their reunions to allow groups such as ours an opportunity to conduct special interest get-togethers. Of note, their reunion at Barksdale had over 200 participants, compared to the 65 who attended the last Arc Light – Young Tiger Association reunion. Merging with their group gives us much more bargaining power when looking for a place to hold a reunion, transportation options, meals, tours, and procuring a top-notch guest speaker.

    It would be sad to see the Arc Light go out forever; so just think of this as a change of location.


Background Information

Attendance at our Arc Light - Young Tigers Association reunions has been in a death-spiral decline over the last couple of reunions. We have gone from several hundred in the past to about 200 attendants in 2012 and down to less than 100 in 2017. This is attributed to a combination of not only the aging of our members, but also the continued conflicts with other military reunions during the same time frames. We hope the new Facebook presence will add to our declining membership roll.

Rather than disband totally, we came up with an alternate solution at our reunion in Omaha last year. The membership voted to look into merging our get-togethers with those of the B-52 Association and combine forces to give us all the ability to take advantage of the benefits of having an increased number of attendees for each group. 

Besides the increase in the health and travel problems of our aging membership, the cost of attending multiple reunions poses a financial obstacle for some on fixed incomes. By combining our reunions we can eliminate some of those problems, insure a better chance of getting reasonable prices on rooms and food, and insure better a larger audience for guest speakers and group tours and perhaps cut transportation costs.

A strong part of the suggested solution was to plan for that the Arc Light - Young Tiger Association members arrive at the B-52 Association's Rendezvous one day early to enjoy our own private Hospitality Suite get-together for socializing and memory sharing.

2017 Reunion



2015 Arc Light - Young Tiger Reunion