For me, it's always a blast to be "found" by someone from our shared youth at West Point no matter whether they were inner circle to our gang or not. Technology has lived up to all the hype to become the great reconnector of our age to be sure.
Some of you guys have commented to me at various times, "How do you remember all this shit?" Truth be told, while my recollection of events can be a bit uncanny at times, there are many stories that have been told to me by others from that age that I have no recollection of at all (not just the potentially criminal stuff either).
Having said that, I think you'd be surprised how many times folks who shared the bus, classroom, teen club, etc... with us have recalled to me a story completely contrary to our exalted reputation. Much like Bill's story in an earlier post of me "saving" him from getting pounded by some Garrison thug his sophomore year.
Last week Danny Wattendorf, who lived next door to us after we moved to Wilson Rd., befriended me on Facebook. My sister might have steered him my way. He was a young kid then, much younger than I, but I do remember him and his family being very nice folks, always kind and pleasant to me. Back then, you’d come to notice things like a Colonel in uniform giving you a cheerful “Hey, how’s it going Pat?” after years of adults looking the other way when you pass them on the sidewalk and not returning your “Hello”.
Danny had this for me:
“Subject: Loooong time ago
Funny what my childhood memories are: In 1979 My family moved to Lee Rd from Ca. and one of my first memories is some scary skate dudes with crankin' long hair hangin' out at the bridge on Lee Rd. I couldn't quite figure out how you got to grow your hair that long given my parents tight control over me at the time. My buddy, Doug Asiello, had nothing to do so we used to dumpster dive behind the PX. We actually once found a wooden mannequin (but, that is another story). Anyway, we used to hang out at a vending machine room they had on the corner of the PX on breaks from our dumpster diving. One day the skate board dudes came in and I remember discussing with Doug whether we should leave given our latent fear, but one of you came over and a bought us one those Hostess pink snowballs (the ones you can peel the pink marshmallow layer off)...."
Thought you all might find this interesting…