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DETACHMENT “A”/PSSE SPECIAL FORCES BERLIN 2021 GET TOGETHER

2021 Detachment”A”/PSSE Special Forces Berlin Get Together

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Host/POC:/RSVP:  Alan “Mac” MacRae

Hotel Information

Hotel Eleganté Conference & Event Center
2886 S Circle Dr, Colorado Springs, CO 80906
(719) 576-5900

Click for Hotel web site.  You can use it to make your reservations.

If you call to make a reservation our code for the reunion has changed to 2767819 or “SF Berlin” when calling the Hotel for a reservation.

The hotel has agreed to give us the same rates and benefits as what we had set up for the canceled 2020 reunion.  Please pay attention to the reservation procedures as there have been some changes.

Hotel Reservation Info

DAY DATE Rate*with Breakfast
Thursday May 13, 2021 $130.00
Friday May 14, 2021 $130.00
Saturday May 15, 2021 $130.00
Sunday May 16, 2021 Checkout

The dates for the reunion are 13-16 May 2021

The cost per night for single King or Double Queen occupancy is $130.00 (includes breakfast)

Additional guests (up to 2) will be charged $10 per guest for breakfast

Priority will be given to those who make reservations prior to Tuesday 13 April so please make reservations early to insure your space at the Hotel

Use “SF Berlin” or code 2767819 when making a reservation by phone: (719) 576-5900.

Use either the website or the phone to make a reservation, but NOT both

The rate of $130 per night (including breakfast) will be honored for 3 days prior to and 3 days after the event dates for those who wish to come early or stay late

If you make reservations for certain dates and decide you will leave early without notifying the Hotel at check-in of an earlier than planned departure, there will be a $75 charge added to your bill

We will have a Hospitality Room provided by the Hotel that is capable of holding 60+ people and we will be allowed to have our own adult beverages.

Guestrooms feature Starbucks Coffee, Bath and Body Works toiletries, internet and custom 13.5” Simmons Mattresses with 800 thread count sheets in all guestrooms.

NOTE:  Rates does not include taxes, currently 10.25%

We will try to have the same events at the 2021 reunion that we were planning for the 2020 reunion.  More info to follow as events are scheduled.

Additional Hotel Information

Three restaurants on property-Rustler’s Country Cafe, Rawhide Sports Bar and The Sweet Tooth featuring Starbucks Coffee and Colorado Creamery Ice Cream.

Complimentary wireless internet service in guest rooms and public space.

COMPLIMENTARY parking spots on site, including 700 reserved spaces for Combat Wounded Veterans.

24 hour complimentary fitness center.

Indoor and outdoor pool and hot tub.

Fitness Trail and Outdoor Sports Court featuring volleyball, tennis, basketball and pickleball with equipment available for check out at the front desk.

Local Attractions

Pikes Peak – America’s Mountain and the

Cog Railway

Garden of the Gods National Park

Cheyenne Mountain Zoo

United States Air Force Academy

World War II Aviation Museum

United States Olympic Training Center

Cripple Creek – an old mining town with Casinos and a working gold mine.

Royal Gorge Railway


Jack Murphy’s Team House Interview with Detachment “A” member Bob Charest

This interview was conducted by The Team House hosts Jack Murphy and Dave Parke.

Bob Charest served in Vietnam and with Special Forces Detachment A conducting the urban unconventional warfare missions in Berlin in the event that the Soviets ever invaded. In this episode we discuss Bob’s career bouncing between Vietnam, Thailand, and Berlin where he served in Project Sigma (which became MACV-SOG) where he did cross border ops into Cambodia, working for the CIA in Thailand, and doing clandestine sabotage ops in Berlin with Det A.

 

TAPS – Gilbert R. Turcotte

Folks, sad news.   Our brother Gil Turcotte passed away on 11/10/2019.  Gil was a generous man, full of caring for all of us. One hell of an SF TROOPER. He will be sadly missed among his Detachment (A) family.

Gil served in Detachment”A” from 1976-1984.

A Celebration of Life ceremony was held for Gil on Saturday, 14 December 2019 in Augusta Maine at  the Maine Army and Air Force Joint Forces Headquarters Maine National Guard Maine Camp Chamberlain Assembly Hall.

The service began with a Color Guard unit made up of the three law enforcement departments that SGM Gilbert Turcotte worked with plus the Maine Army National Guard soldier in dress blues carrying the US Army Flag. Then the Maine State Select (the best in the state) honor guard brought the folded Colors and the Urn to the table in the front. Followed by a female army guard singing the National Anthem.   This was followed by the Invocation by LTC Earl Weigelt Maine National Guard Chaplain.

Then speakers from the Agency Gil worked for in order:

Army MSG Bob Charest Detachment”A” member

Det Paul Ferland of the Winthrop Police Department

Sheriff Ken Mason Kennebec County Sheriff’s Office

Dan Davies of the Sabattus Police Department.

Kevin Cookson Major Kennebec Sheriff’s Office and Gil’s commander as LT in the  CID.

Next came remarks from folks present which was well over 100.

Detachment”A” members Douglas Curry, Ron Russell, and Ric Patrick attended along with former army buddies of Gil including “Smitty”, and Steven Boyd were also in attendance.

This was followed by Dot given her emotional remarks.

A poem read at a lot of Vietnam veterans funeral was then recited by MSG retired Ryan Hewins.

The poem was followed by Gil’s one and only request:  to have the Ballard of a Green Beret by SSG Sadler.

This was followed by LTC Earl Weigelt Chaplain Maine Army National Guard. Once his remarks were over the Honor Guard standing outside at attention in the pouring rain gave the 21 gun salute.

Two SSG performed the unfolding then re-folding of the colors which was presented to Dot.

Chaplain Weigelt performed the benediction.

After the ceremony a catered reception was held in the camps dining hall.

This is a link to an article from the Central Maine Newspaper.

TAPS – Peter M. Gould

Peter Marcus Gould passed away on 31 October 2019.  Peter served in Detachment”A” from 1980-1984.

A Celebration of Life was held on December 14, 2019 at the Contoocook Fire Station, 9 Pine Street, Contoocook New Hampshire .  Detachment”A” members Doug Curry and Ron Russell were in attendance.

Additional information

SFA Chapter XI Regimental Birthday Reception, Dinner and Dance Honoring the Veterans of Special Forces Berlin

This event has been postponed to a later date to be announced.

On May 1st, 2020 Chapter XI  are hosting a Regimental Birthday Reception, Dinner and Dance Honoring Veterans of Special Forces Berlin at the Army Navy Country Club, 1700 Army Navy Drive, Arlington, Virginia.

Their Chapter website https://www.sfa11.org has a button  “Click Here for Invitation” to download the invitation with RSVP card and return address.

David Jackson and Chapter XI president Ray Oden are contacts for this event.

SFA Chapter XI Regimental Birthday Reception, Dinner and Dance

    • Honoring the Veterans of Special Forces Berlin
    • FRIDAY, MAY 1, 2020
    • 1800-2300 Hours
    • Army Navy Country Club
    • 1700 Army Navy Drive, Arlington, Virginia 22202

2019 Detachment“A”/PSSE Special Forces Berlin Get Together After-Action Report

2019 Detachment“A”/PSSE Special Forces Berlin Get Together After-Action Report

The 2019 Detachment “A”/PSSE Special Forces Berlin Get Together held in Asheville, NC from 12 September 2019 – 15 September 2019 was outstanding and truly special. The 2019 Detachment”A”/PSSE Special Forces Berlin was incredible and truly special, one of the best yet.  They just keep getting better.

Highlights

Many thanks to all the folks that contributed to this year’s function which was extra special this time.  Sid Williams contributed enormously to this function in both time and effort.  His support is greatly appreciated.  He also kept the bar stocked which was no small task.  Many thanks also to Gil Turcotte as well for his contributions to this function. Mercer “Mac” Dorsey, Ron Braughton, Chris Feudo, Gil Turcotte, John Lee, Pat and Gabbie Walters, all made very generous donations of beer to the bar and food, as did many others. Alan MacRae and the PSSE contributed their time and efforts to help keep things going, many thanks to all of them.  Alan will be hosting the 2020 function. John Lee provided us all with the sharp-looking name tags using our Berlin logo.  Many thanks from the attendees. Nick Brokhausen was in attendance and he brought along copies of his first book WE FEW: U.S. Special Forces in Vietnam; three of which were auctioned off at the function.  Nick has written a new book entitled Whispers in the Tall Grass with an expected publication date of 19 October 2019.  All the information about Nick’s second book has been posted to the Special Forces Berlin/Detachment”A” web site.  

Betty Amaker from the JFK Museum/Gift Shop was in attendance.  Betty brought a large assortment of Special Forces and Detachment”A” items for sale. Sid Williams donated several artifacts for the JFK Museum including: two US Command Berlin telephone directories:  US Command telephone directory, Directory of key personnel; copies of Berlin photos from 1935 to a 1963 checkpoint Charlie photo and maps from Berlin from the early days.  These artifacts were handed over to Betty who will transport to Roxanne Merritt for processing.

Original Member Recognition

One of our Original Detachment”A” members, James Wilde attended with his lovely wife Rosi.  Jim was in Detachment”A” from 1957 to 1963.

Some of the couples we managed to snap pictures.

Meeting

Bob Charest kicked things off.  Bob spoke about members on sick call, and how they were greatly missed; wishing them all well.  Bob then introduced Chris Feudo who gave the blessing of the function.  Chris gave a meaningful and inspirational invocation. Bob then introduced Alan MacRae who will be the hosting our next function in 2020.  The Detachment”A”/PSSE Berlin Special Forces function will be held in Colorado Springs, Colorado in September 2020.  Alan gave a detailed presentation to everyone about the next function.  Bill Crowley is doing a lot of the groundwork for this function. All this information has been posted to the Berlin Special Forces /Detachment “A” web site so you can find out all about the next function.  For full information on our 2020 Detachment“A”/PSSE Special Forces Berlin Function go to the web site. Bob then asked Sid Williams to give everyone a briefing on his efforts with the Veterans Cemetery in Monterey, CA.  Sid provided a full status on all the work done for the veterans’ cemetery.

Auction

Bob Charest and Nick Brokhausen were having breakfast when Nick came up with the idea to auction off three books and donating the proceeds to our function.  He suggested to Bob Charest that he preside over the auction.  Right about the time Bob was thinking it over as to who could be drafted as auctioneer instead of himself, along came Ron Bruce at the most opportune time.  To make a long story short, Ron was ‘assigned’ the job of auctioneer although somewhat reluctantly having informed us he had no experience in this area. Later that day, the auction began.  Ron assumed his role as auctioneer and not only did he perform as well as any trained auctioneer, he excelled; it was performance to behold.  Ron was a big hit with the folks. Jeanne Fondas aided Ron by keeping records of all the bids.  The bids exceeded expectations having raised over $300.00 for the three books.  Many thanks to Nick for his generous donation.  Bob Charest gave the money raised by the auction to Alan MacRae for the 2020 function.

Special Toast

Lee Fondas surprised Bob Charest with a special toast.  Lee shared a $500.00 bottle of cognac with the troops.  He and his wife Jeanne set it up.  They prepared special shot glasses for those present and toasted Bob for his friendship, and his efforts and contributions to Detachment”A” and Berlin Special Forces.

MG(Ret)Jim Guest

Our honored guest MG(Ret) James Guest could not make our function this year, and he was sorely missed.  A specially crafted eagle cane was to be presented to Jim at the function by Gil Turcotte who had the woodcarver artist create a personalized eagle cane for Jim.  The cane was mailed to Jim’s home.

Berlin Special Forces