Highlights from the 2008 Open Mess


1978 - Steve Ritchie 

Vietnam Ace

1979 - Shigeo Imamura 

Imperial Japanese Navy Kamikaze Pilot

I980 - George Gay 

Sole Survivor, Torpedo 8, Battle of Midway

I981 - Jack Hilger 

Deputy Commander Doolittle Raid

I982 - Matt Urban

 Most decorated U.S. Serviceman

1983 - John Singlaub 

 Army Chief of Staff, Korea

I984 - Hanns Scharff 

Chief Interrogator, Luftwaffe, WWII

I985 - Edwards Park 

P39 Pilot, Pacific Campaign

1986 - Werner Prange

Wehrmacht Infantryman, Eastern Front

1987 - William Billings 

RAF Spitfire Pilot

I988 - Walter Scott 

Battery Cmdr. at Corregidor, the Phillippines

I989 - William Sefton 

101st Airborn, Normandy, Holland, Bastogne

I990 - Rev. George Wood

Chaplain 82nd Airborne

I991 -Robert Ross

 Dauntless Dive Bomber Pilot, Pacific Campaign

I992 - Berendina Eman 

Decorated Member of the Dutch resistance

I993 - Ed Foster 

32nd Division, Buna Campaign, New Guinea

I994 - Ralph Hauenstein 

CoI. U.S. Army, Chief of Intelligence, SHAEF

I995 - Don Jandernoa 

USAAF, B-24 Pilot, 454th Bomb Group

I996 - Robert Johnson

 USAAF, P-47 Ace, 56th Fighter Group

1997 - Joe Beyrle 

101st Airborne, Normandy, POW Escapee

1998 - Doug Canning 

USAAF, P-38 Pilot, Admiral Yamamoto Mission

I999 - Horst Petzschler 

Luftwaffe, ME-I 09G & FW- I 90A Ace, JG3&5

2000 - Walter J. Konantz 

USAAF, P-S I Pilot, 55th Fighter Group

2001 - Donald R. Burgett

101st Airborne, Normandy, Holland, Bastogne, Germany

2002 - Gordon J. Van Wylen

 US Navy, submarine U.S.S. Hardhead, Pacific

2003 - David Lee Tex” Hill 

USAAF, P-40 ‘Flying Tiger’ Ace, AVG

2004 - Milo Flaten 

E Company, I I 6 Regiment, 29th Infantry Division

2005 - Joe Volmar  

Luftwaffenhelfer, ME-I 63 Trainee

2006 - Roger Hall  

OSS Instructor & Operative, ETO, WWII

2007 - James Campbell

author, The Ghost Mountain Boys

2008 - Mike Kuryla

Survivor USS Indianapolis


"Open Mess"  2008



Mr. Mike Kuryla  

Mr. Mike Kuryla was our 2008 Open Mess Speaker. "Mike" is a survivor of the sinking of the USS INDIANAPOLIS which delivered the first atomic bomb to Tinian prior to its being dropped on Hiroshima. He has spoken many times on his experiences including for the History Channel.  We were lucky to have present at the Open Mess two other survivors as well. The talk by Mr. Kuryla was, to say the least, very moving.


Fellow WWII Navy Veteran Jay W. Huston introducing speaker

Annual Awards


Don Hill receives from the MCMH&C Commandant Richard Thorne the "Richard Dupon Memorial Award"
for "Capable and Outstanding Achievement Beyond the Call of Duty". Throughout the years Don has distinguished himself for his consistent support and promotion of MCMH&C, inviting guests, recruiting new members and participating in the monthly displays of collectibles.


José A. Amorós receives the Award for Monthly Displays