Our 2004 reunion, held in New Orleans, Lousiana August 4th-8th at the Royal Sonesta hotel is going to be hard to top. David and Roz Vicknair hosted a very memorable reunion. The Royal Sonesta hotel is located on Bourbon Street, which should have been a tipoff to any New Orleans veteran visitor! Mardi Gras Day may be the day before Ash Wednesday, but the party on Bourbon Street continues year round.Washtenaw's 2004 Reunion
To recap the reunion, most attendees arrived Wednesday, with registration, sea stories, slides and memorabilia viewing taking place in our hospitality room, "The Royal Conti Room". Dinner that evening was at Patout's Cajun Cabin with Cajun dancing and music, with many heading to world famous Pat O'Brien's for a Hurricane afterward. Thursday included a buffet dinner and floor show at Harrah's Casino, featuring singer Earl Turner and his band. Earl ended the show singing Lee Greenwood's "God Bless the USA" in tribute to Washtenaw's veterans! Friday ended with a cocktail party, silent auction and Mardi Gras parade in the hotel's "Teche Belle Grove Room", with entertainment by Paul Bell and his jazz band. On Saturday a meeting was held to talk about next year's reunion, followed by dinner and a ride up the Mississippi aboard the Natchez Riverboat, with jazz band. Of course Sunday was wrap it up and head for home day. Throughout the week many made side trips around town with the D-Day Museum being very popular. There were 31 ship's crew veterans in attendance including 3 plank owners, plus many wives/girlfriends, and Larry and Erik Martin were there to report on Washtenaw's status as well as pick our minds of memories for the Washtenaw museum.
Bravo Zulu to David and Roz, David's brother Glenn Vicknair and his wife Rosemary, along with everyone else who helped make this a most memorable reunion!
Sitting left to right: Ray Montminy, Mike Blackwell and David Vicknair
Standing left to right: Danny Cable, Jim Hopkins, Ken Rosenbalm (front), Harold Bueker (rear), George Durtschi, John Strittmatter (plank owner), Jim Schultz, Vic Little (plank owner - front), Bob Haley (rear), Mike Shaw, Jerry Mueller, Arnie Helfrich, (plank owner), Bob Coombs, Greg Pierceall, Charlie Stevens, Michael Pankaka (rear), Jay Brown, Leonard Carida, Jim Barnett, Joe Rosenberg, Bob Hatfield, Tom Osmond, Sandy Weissman, Mel Vineyard, Nick Motto, and Paul Roberge. Les Eldridge and John Montagne missed ship's movement, dinner, and the photo shoot.
Cocktail Party Photos by Glenn Vicknair
Natchez Dinner Photos by Glenn Vicknair
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