The U.S. Fourth Army Reunion Band


            While we were serving our country, and affecting lives with our music through the U.S. Fourth Army Band (FAB), we griped because of the interruption in our lives.  As young men, we did not appreciate our advantage.  But we endured and then returned home to pursue our dreams.  Today we have grown to appreciate the positive aspects of our time in service, and say “thank you” for the U.S. Fourth Army Band.  For many of us, the benefits of our service included the maturity we gained in our chosen profession, performing with the fine FAB ensembles and the concurrent opportunities. 

Through our reunions we have come to know the same musicians as experienced adults and cherish the camaraderie.  The pleasure of annually performing with these fine professionals, and introducing our children, our students, and our community music colleagues, brings us together each year.  Area musicians are invited to augment our decreasing ranks in each city.  We enjoy the fellowship and the challenge of preparing the annual “love-fest” concerts each year to share with our host community as we offer a two and one-half hour free public concert.  The joy of music still unites members of the Fourth Army Band.


Finding Fab Members 35 Years Later


            The organizational meeting for FAB Reunions occurred in Columbia, South Carolina, Father’s Day 1987.  Howard and Zelia Bell, on an auto trip in the Southeast, visited their eldest daughter and family in Atlanta and were invited to stay with their college/FAB friends Gene and Janet Ferguson in Columbia.  Gene was a professor of voice at the University of South Carolina.  FABer Fred Teuber was on the same music faculty, teaching composition.  The six of us, including Fred’s wife Janet, met for brunch with the declared purpose to begin a list of names of those we could recall from our service with the FAB in the 1950s.  We also notated hometowns when remembered.  In the next several weeks Howard relied on the telephone service to give him two numbers with each inquiry.  Former members and parents were interested in helping locate others.  The project mushroomed and all were enthusiastic to attend a proposed FAB Reunion in Kansas City, Missouri in June1988. 

Mr. McElwee, our CWO in the early 1950s, was helpful and enthralled with the possibility of seeing and performing with “his boys” again.  The Dean of the School of Music at U.M.K.C. in 1988 was Dr. David Kuehn.  David and his charming wife Susan were close friends of the Bells and David approved the use of the air-conditioned White Recital Hall for rehearsals and the Concert, and unlimited use of instruments and equipment.  David was Howard Bell’s most advanced tuba student at Alamo Heights High School, San Antonio, in 1954 and 1955.  We secured a very reasonable rate from a new hotel in Westport and planned a “Pub Crawl.”  With these basics in place it was time to get reacquainted, party and perform.













Fab Reunions


1988 - Kansas City, Mo.

2001 -  Laughlin

2010 – Houston - Woodlands

1990 - San Antonio

2002 – Houston – Nassau Bay

2011 – Dallas - Mesquiite

1992 - New Orleans

2003 – San Antonio

2012 – Wimberly, Texas

1994 - Dallas

2004 – Branson, Mo.

2013 – Kansas City - Olathe, Kan.

1996 - Houston

2005 – Corpus Christi

2014 – Houston – Spring Branch

1997 - San Antonio 

2006 – Bossier City/Shreveport

2015 – Dallas – Farmers Branch

1998 - San Antonio

2007 -  Branson

2016 – San Antonio

1999 - Laughlin, Nevada

2008 – Kansas City

2017 -

2000 - Dallas

2009 – San Antonio

2018 -


Kansas City - June 19-23, 1988


Hosts: Howard & Zelia Bell


4th Army Band Reunion

K. C. MO 1988


1-Janet Ferguson, 2-Gene Ferguson, 3-Sam Attardo, 4-Annette Attardo, 5- Bill Casey, 6 -Johanna Casey, 7-Helen Shepard, 8-Ron Shepard, 9-Bill Kiimple, 10-Pat Kimple. 11-Norm Elliott, 12-Pat Elliott, 13-Richard Hoffman, 14-Hoffman’s guest, 15-JoAnn Knapp, 16-Don Knapp, 17-Gabe Solow, 18-Rose Mary Rumbley, 19-Jack Rumbley, 20-Marjorie Pettigrew, 21-Beryl Pettigrew, 22-Jerry Loveall, 23-Bonita Loveall, 24-Bodie Bodelson, 25-Joan Bodelson, 26-Dianne D’Gerolimo, 27-Joe D’Gerolimo, 28-Bill Kopecky, 29-Muriel Kopecky,30-Alice Perry, 31-Bill Perry, 32-Sandra Randolph, 33-Herman Randolph, 34-Espie











 Valadez, 35-Jorge Valadez,36-Arnold Schatz, 37-Don Burnes, 38-Marianne Burnes, 39-Howard Bell, 40-Zelia Bell, 41-Dottie Mendez. 42-Bob Lavery, 43-Pat Lavery, 44-Larry Gulino, 45-Andy Anderson, 46-Ralph Kimball,47-Carol Kimball, 48-Jose Mendez, 49-Dolly Hudgins, 50-Jack Hudgins, 51-UMKC Student, 52-Dawson McElwee, 53-Mary McElwee, 54-Bob Dill, 55-Janet Dill, 56-Jervis Underwood, 57-Carmen Underwood, 58-Mary Ratley, 59-Artis Ratley, 60-Milt Hehr




























As we all sat in the booths at Chili’s Restaurant talking excitedly and eating, radios were tuned to a special welcome to K.C. from the Classical station, KXTR. Andrew Yates, the host, played fine band literature in our honor.  Andrew performed in the percussion section of the Concert Band and was elected to Honorary status. Jorge Valadez, with the assistance of Don Burnes, interviewed everyone with his tape recorder. 

With the planned itinerary we toured places of interest, ate lunch at the K.C. Royals Stadium Club, toured the Truman Library and then to Lake Lotawana for boating, swimming and a cookout.  The temperature was 100 degrees in late June but no one mentioned heat—we were too busy getting reacquainted.  The pontoon boat was busy with tours of the lake.  Good food prepared by the Bell Family at grills and wonderful fellowship after an interlude of 35 years!

After rediscovering our ensemble skills during rehearsals, we enjoyed a “Pub Crawl” in the evening.  We visited first an upstairs club, Harlings, featuring a keyboard performer who was pleased that our musicians joined in.  Andy Anderson, keyboard; Joe D’Gerolamo, fluegelhorn; Bill Kimple, tenor sax; Don Knapp, trumpet; and Jerry Loveall, trombone; brought their instruments, Gabe Solow scat-sang without vibes.  Great fun.  We enjoyed K.C. hickory-smoked barbecue at this stop.  Then we traveled south to a club that featured the Joe Cartright Trio—piano, bass and drums.  The bass player had just returned to K.C. after an extended gig in Denver.  Jorge Valadez (our bass player) could not believe the ability of this young man.  Up-beat tempos on some charts were amazing.  To complete the evening, we traveled to 18th and Vine where the many Black musicians have performed—the Black Musicians Union Hall.  They expected us and had two bands playing—one upstairs and the other down. Before long all were in the main area performing, including our jazzers.  Crowded, smoky, but marvelous.

Visiting a rehearsal at UMKC was Merrill Jones and Frank Fendorf from Wingert-Jones Music of Kansas City.

A ladies’ luncheon was held in the Rozelle Court at the Atkins Museum of Art.  Jack Rumbley did a fine job as master of ceremonies at the Banquet.  We showed slides of us as young men in the FAB in the early 50s.  Billy and Johanna Casey were praised for traveling from London, England.  Noted for being the most congenial couple were Jorge and Espie Valadez from Las Vegas. Joe D’Gerolamo arrived in K.C. from Memphis wearing his U.S. Army dress blouse with emblem and stripes—one of only a few still able to fit in the military issue. 

The three FAB ensembles performed ably in concert at UMKC.  “These old cats can still play,” announcer Don Burnes stated.  The Concert Band was conducted by Mr. Mac, five alums and three area university conductors.  Rule Beasley penned a new composition “Commemoration,” dedicated to Dawson McElwee and the ’88 Reunion.  Gene Ferguson sang a Puccini aria beautifully and the entire program was contrasting and very entertaining.  In the afternoon, the Jazz Band was a big hit with Andy Anderson’s “Let It Go” and Paris Rutherford (NTSU) sent a chart “Together” that was dedicated to the ’88 Reunion. Gershwin’s “Embraceable You” was another favorite. The String Ensemble performed a movement from a Handel Concerto and “Eine Kleine Nachtmusik” under the direction of Arnold Schatz. The Pastels, the backup group for Vic Damone in 1951, were reunited: Gabe Solow, vibraphone; Andy Amato, accordion; Larry Gulino, clarinet; Jorge Valadez, bass and Jack Rumbley, drums.  Pleasant memories were revisited with “The Touch of Your Lips,” “S’Wonderful” and others.

Someone commented that Jerry Loveall paid the ’88 Reunion a tribute by remaining to its end.  There were 94 participants present for the first FAB Reunion.                                                 Howard Bell                  







No recorded music available from the first FAB Reunion

San Antonio – June 23-26, 1990



Host:  Bev and Fran Moore












Pictured at the San Antonio River Center

Reunion Attendees:Ret. CWO Dawson & Mary McElwee, Ret. CWO John Parrott, Harlan Adamcik, Andy & Sarah Amato, Andy & Connie Anderson, Sam & Annette Attardo, Ed Ayola, Howard & Zelia Bell, Don & Marianne Burnes, Billy & Johanna Casey, Bob & Mary Chavez, Joe & Dianne D'Gerolamo, Norman & Pat Elliott, Charlie Fox, Al Gomez, Larry Gulino, Duncan Hale, Larry & Joan Haver with Matt & Andy, Ralph & Dorothy Huggins, Mac Jones, Bill Justice, Ralph & Carol Kimball, Bill & Patti Kimple, Bill & Muriel Kopecky, Ivan & Wanda Lankford, Bob & Pat Lavery, Jerry & Benita Lovell, Jose & Dottie Mendez, Bev & Fran Moore, Dave Nault, Fred Oldencott, Bob Parker, Beryl & Marjorie Pettigrew, Art & Janet Picou, Herman & Sandy Randolph, Art & Mary Ratley, Gary Rosenblatt, Arnold Schatz, Ron & Helen Shepard, Jack & Martha Smith, Al Tapia, Jervis & Carmen Underwood, Jorge & Espie Valadez, Morrie & Annette Waite, Gene & Nancy Watson and Duane Wickiser.  Honoraries: Louise Krochmal, Juanita Tampke, Gene & Mary McKinney, Jim Carroll and CWO Donald Barton. 

Bev and Fran Moore were our hosts for the second FAB Reunion.  The Hospitality room for spouses, known in military jargon as the “Day Room,” contained cold drinks and photo scrapbooks to peruse. On our nostalgic city tour we enjoyed a return visit to the Lone Star Brewery (band members were guests in 1954), the San Jose Mission was fascinating as a Mariachi band performed a Mass, and we visited the Buckhorn Bar and Hall of Horns.  Ladies’ luncheons were enjoyed at La Villita and Los Patios.  Rehearsals were held at Cole High School on the Ft. Sam Post. 

The FAB Concert was played in the cooperative outdoor elements at River Center.  The USO was celebrating with a large group that became much of our audience.  The String Orchestra, led by Arnold Schatz performed works by Purcell, Strauss, Gershwin and Cole Porter.  The Jazz Band performed Andy Anderson’s new chart “Mac’s Back,” Joe D’Gerolamo was soloist on trumpet and fluegelhorn, and Bill Kimple and Jerry Loveall soloed on “After All My Love” by Bob Chavez.  The Concert Band led by Dawson McElwee presented a musical tribute to General I.D. White; CWO Donald Barton, leader of the 5th Army Band at Ft. Sam Houston, conducted, and Gary Rosenblatt led “The Battle Hymn of the Republic” with FAB men singing.  Don Burnes did an outstanding job elaborating the history of the FAB and introducing all those in attendance. 

Billy and Johanna Casey again attended from London, England.  The Havers, Larry and Joan with sons Matt and Andy, attended from Michigan.  Gene and Nancy Watson, from Nebraska, were enthusiastic to attend for the first time and Gene did a fine job recording the performance groups.  Retired First Sergeant Ralph Huggins made a brief appearance.  Juanita Tampke, widow of CWO Homer Tampke, made a lasting impression on all who met her.  She and Wanda Lankford served coffee and doughnuts at rehearsal break-time for the concert band.  Bob Farrar videotaped all segments of the reunion. The individual interviews are notable.                                                                                               Howard Bell


































Music recorded on video by Bob Farrar.

Concert Band  - “Through the Years” arr. Valadez











New Orleans – June 27-30, 1992

Hosts: Joe & Dianne D’Gerolamo, Art & Janet Picou, Sybil Varisco




























            Living in the French Quarter was convenient for all events.  Dianne D’Gerolamo selected the fabulous Hotel Provincial (owned by relatives) with beautiful French décor in each unit.  We were three blocks from Café du Monde and Jackson Square.  Joe and Dianne D’Gerolamo, Art and Janet Picou and Subil Varisco were our gracious hosts.  The memorable meals we enjoyed were at the following restau-rants: Tujaques, Mulate’s, Bistro La Tour and ladies’ luncheons at Feliz’s andBourbon Orleans.  Ladies who attended the luncheons will recall Rose Mary Rumbley’s humorous talk at which she stated, “Today’s kids aren’t dumb, they just don’t know anything!”   The ladies’ walking tours were led by Dianne’s cousin Clancey to the Market and other sites.  The city-wide bus tour included Lake Ponchartrain, the Garden District and French Quarter.  

Jack Rumbley delighted us with his wit as he MC’d the Banquet.  Mr. Mac’s reminisces about experiences with the FAB were amusing.  Don Burnes conjured up interesting facts about our music and performers as he MCd the Concert.  The String Ensemble, led by Arnold Schatz, pleased the audience with a Haydn “Serenade” and “Old French Gavotte.”  The Jazz Band swung with Andy Anderson’s arrangement of “On A Wonderful Day” as with Joe D’Gerolamo’s chart “Sweet Lorraine.” “Funny Valentine” was memorable with Joe D playing fluegelhorn and Jerry Loveall on trombone.  The Concert Band was led by Mr. Mac as he conducted “Sinatra in Concert;” we enjoyed “Carnival Day in New Orleans” conducted by J. Dilkey; Bing Crosby conducted “Richard Rodgers Portrait;” Mr. Mac led his quintet in “Roaring 20s” and Beryl Pettigrew led the Reunion Singers and Band as they concluded the evening with “The Battle Hymn of the Republic.” 

The audiotape was prepared by Gene Watson, the videotape by Bob Farrar.  Sixty-one participants were present for our third FAB Reunion.  “Do You Know What It Means to Miss New Orleans?” 

                                                                                                  Dianne D’Gerolamo & Howard Bell        



Music recorded by Gene Watson

Concert Band - “Bravura” C.E. Duble, Pete Cisneros, Conductor

Dallas – July 23-27, 1994

Hosts:  Bill & Patti Kimple, Jack & Rose Mary Rumbley, Ron & Helen Shepard

            Bill & Patti Kimple, Jack & Rose Mary Rumbley and Ron & Helen Shepard were our “Doin’ Dallas” hosts.  We were a month later than usual because of the anticipated crowds for the International Soccer matches in Dallas.  The bus tour of Dallas/Fort Worth included a walk through the stockyards and a meal at Joe Garcia’s in Fort Worth. 

Bill and Patti Kimple’s evening supper at their home was a big hit and the Jazzers played into the night.  The ladies traveled to the Galleria, Myerson Symphony Hall and enjoyed a lunch at the Dallas Museum of Art.  Richland College was the site for our rehearsals and the Concert. 

The two and one-half hour Concert was a huge success.  The String Ensemble, under the direction of Arnold Schatz, gave a fine performance that included “Meditation” from Thais, Mr. McElwee’s daughter-in-law, Lisa, sang beautifully “One Hand, One Heart” from West Side Story, and then a crowd-pleaser, “Eleanor Rigby.”  The Jazz Band featured Joe D’Gerolamo’s new arrangement “The Eyes of Texas,” Bill Kimple’s arrangement of “Patti,” and then “Stardust” and “Autumn Leaves” completed the set.  The Concert Band displayed interesting variety in their program: Bill Perry gave a fine interpretation of the “Chaconne” from First Suite in Eb, six stalwart trumpeters, Knapp, Schmidt, Picou, Engelhardt, Parker and D’Gerolamo recycled a blazing rendition of “Bugler’s Holiday;” Honorary, Don Verne Joseph conducted his composition, “Songs of the American Soldier;” and first-time attendee Larry Brumley conducted the Reunion Singers and Band in the stirring “Battle Hymn of the Republic.”  There were 84 participants for the fourth FAB Reunion.                                          Dallas Committee & Howard Bell




Music recorded on video by Bob Farrar

Jazz Band - “Eyes of Texas” – arr. Joe D’Gerolamo


Houston – June 22-26, 1996

Hosts:  Herman & Sandy Randolph, Andy & Connie Anderson, Mac Jones, Les Munson, 

Jerry Perkins, Duncan Hale

The String Ensemble

L. to R.:  Mary McKinney, Leo Sacchi (horn soloist), Arnold Schatz, James Streit, Cleo Aufderhaar, Beryl Pettigrew,

Pat Lavery, Bob Lavery, Carolyn Sacchi, George Gregory and Sandy Randolph


The hosts for our FAB Reunion in the fourth largest city in the U.S. were Herman & Sandy Randolph, Andy & Connie Anderson, Mac Jones, and ably assisting were Les Munson, Jerry Perkins and Duncan Hale.  The sights in the Houston area were impressive. The Johnson Space Center was intriguing, and as always, wonderful meals, this time at the Brass Parrot andNifa’s.  The Ladies’ Luncheon at the Cheesecake Factory at the Galleria was thoroughly enjoyed.  The Banquet was pleasurable with Jack Rumbley as our MC and he related correspondence from several couples and added humorous quips.  Sherman Friedland, Montreal, Canada, submitted a side-splitting epistle for the FAB reunion. Sherman was generous to send a dozen CDs of the Montreal Symphony that were dispersed at the Banquet.  He is a clarinetist in the orchestra.

The performance groups were “the best ever” with a dozen fine local performers to enhance our talent.  We enjoyed a “world-class” French horn section, the best we’ve had since our quartet of the mid-50s.  We were fortunate to rehearse and present the Concert at the St. Mark’s Lutheran Church.  The entire staff was helpful in many ways, including performing with us.  Parishioners helped fill the large sanctuary.  The String Ensemble gave a lovely performance capped by “Feelings,” and oboist Ellie Hansen playing the “Rondo” from the Stamitz Quartet in Eb.  The Jazz Band performed “Mac’s Back” by Andy Anderson, repeated from the 1990 Reunion.  Other favorites were “Stardust” and Bill Kimple’s arrangement of “Come Fly with Me.”  Concert Band members enjoyed a new work by Mac Jones, written in honor of clarinetist Herman Randolph, “Ode to Ebony;” Lisa McElwee sang a tribute to Judy Garland” with Mr. McElwee conducting; Jack Rumbley conducted “Armed Forces Salute” and the servicemen in the audience stood proudly; and Leslie Munson conducted the Reunion Singersand Band as they performed “Let There Be Peace On Earth.”  Our knowledgeable announcer, Don Burnes, tied everything together beautifully. 

After the concert, we traditionally enjoyed birthday cake and ice cream with Mr. Mac and all the gang as we had all aged two years.  Although not in good health, Gene Watson drove from Nebraska to Houston with the recording equipment.  He again produced fine tapes for CDs and at an inexpensive rate for all of us.  The Board voted to begin next year to hold annual meetings.  We’ll return to San Antonio in 1997.  A note from Bill & Patti Kimple, “We have gotten to know some of the finest people that we didn’t know from the Army Band days, plus getting to renew friendships with those we did know but whom we hadn’t seen in years.  Well, it has just been one of the best things to happen to us.”  There were 81 attendees for the fifth FAB Reunion.                                                Houston Committee & Howard Bell































Music recorded by Gene Watson

Concert Band - “Armed Forces Salute” arr. Lowden, Jack Rumbley, conductor










San Antonio – June 21-24, 1997


Hosts: Ivan & Wanda Lankford, Bev Moore, Larry Schmidt, Harlan Adamcik,

Gary Rosenblatt, Fred Oldencott.



Andy Amato & Gabe Solow

Col. (Ret.) John Bracey & CWO (Ret) Dawson McElwee























            Hosts for 1997            were Ivan & Wanda Lankford, Bev Moore, Larry Schmidt, Harlan Adamcik, Gary Rosenblatt and Fred Oldencott.  It did rain and rain, but our spirits were unaffected.  We enjoyed the bus trip to Fredricksburg, the German history and the delicious German meal.  The Nimitz Museum, Vereins Church and Museum, antique shops, and the brewery were all intriguing. 

The Ladies’ Luncheons were outstanding in Floresville and at Los Patios.  Our Banquet was held at the NCO Club at Fort Sam Houston.  Jack Rumbley was our MC.  Mr. McElwee was presented a Certificate of Appreciation for the fine Concert in Khaki radio programs presented by the Headquarters Fourth Army Band in the early 1950s.  First-time attendees were: John Bracey (Ret. Col.) and John Jr.; Claude Hedspeth (Ret. CWO, 5th Army Band); Jim and Anne Cross; George Gregory; Roger & Mickey Kuhnke; Jack Litton; David Mathis (5th Army Band); Carlos Rios; Jim & Dolores Roumillat; Lottie Wickiser; Leon Young; Hank & Chris Zwartz and their family--Cindy, Kevin & Brad Czochara.  Ceramic gifts shaped like the state of Texas were prepared by Wanda & Ivan Lankford and given to all reunion participants. 

It was a joy to hear Jervis Underwood play the flute again after serious health issues, and Gabe Solow, the Bronx-flash Vibe player, was back in action with The Pastels after surgery.  We enjoyed the facilities and acoustics of the University United Methodist Church for rehearsals and the Concert.  The String Orchestra was fine as they performed “Air” by Bach, the Allegro movement from “Horn Concerto in D” by Rollig, horn solo by Honorary Leo Sacchi from Houston, and “Feelings.”  The Pastels ensemble was comprised of Harlan Adamcik, clarinet; Gabe Solow, Vibraphone; Andy Amato, accordion; Ron Sheppard, bass; and Jack Rumbley, drums.  Their selections: “Paper Moon,” “Shiny Stockings” and “Fine and Dandy.”  The Jazz Band feature was “Doodlin’” arranged by Andy Anderson, presenting Jose Mendez on bass trombone.  Other favorites: “Georgia On My Mind” with Harlan Adamcik on alto sax, “Nina Never Knew,” arranged by Bill Kimple, and “The Shadow of Your Smile.”  The Concert Band offered variety: “Irish Tune from County Derry” conducted by Leslie Munson; “Nimrod” conducted by Dan McClinton; “Hoagy Carmichael in Concert” conducted by Honorary David Mathis; “Guns Up” conducted by the composer, Honorary Charles L. Booker; and Jervis Underwood conducted the Reunion Chorus and Band in “Let There Be Peace On Earth.” 

Our sixth FAB Reunion was the largest to date, 102 participants.                          


                                                                                            San Antonio Committee & Howard Bell




































No recorded music available from this concert














San Antonio – June 20-24, 1998




Cheryl, Larry, Sean & Kara Schmidt

Hosts: Bev & Fran Moore, Larry & Cheryl Schmidt




Bev Moore
















Hosts were Bev & Fran Moore and Larry & Cheryl Schmidt.  Especially memorable was the evening at Bill & Jackie Lee’s home.  Great food and jamming by FABers and Honoraries.  Our Banquet was held at the attractive, new Ft. Sam Houston Golf Clubhouse.  Jack Rumbley was our MC.  Jack identified our first-timers: Bill & Jackie Lee; Dyke & Mary Jane Schmeer, from Canandaigua, New York; and Joe Naff from Magnolia, Delaware. 

The University United Methodist Church was again our facility for rehearsals and the Concert.  The String Orchestra was augmented by Honoraries, Cleo Aufderhaar (S.A. Symphony), Mary McKinney (Oklahoma), and Carolyn Sacchi (Houston).  Arnold Schatz led the ensemble as they performed one movement from the “Royal Fireworks,” arranged by Cleo; the Adagio from Mozart’s “Concerto in G Major” for flute, performed brilliantly by Kara Schmidt; and “Tonight” from “West Side Story.”  The Jazz Band repeated favorites, “Doodlin’,” “Eyes of Texas” (in memory of Joe D’Gerolamo) and “Stardust” and added “Jada” and “Bill Bailey.”  The Concert Band performed “Purple Pageant” march to honor the memory of Ivan Lankford; Jack Rumbley conducted the medley, “Spirit of Texas;” and Joe Naff took the podium to lead the Reunion Chorus and Band in “Let There Be Peace.”  The Concert received a standing ovation from the large gathering.  We were blessed with second generation talent.  Kara Schmidt played flute in the Concert Band and soloed with the String Ensemble; Sean Schmidt was a fine addition to the Concert Band and Jazz Band; and Leland Knapp, a band director, son of Don & Joann, played trumpet and conducted the Concert Band.  Gene & Nancy Watson would not have been able to attend this year without the effort of son, Craig Anderson.  Craig played tenor saxophone in the Jazz Band and physically assisted Gene.  Don Burnes’ golden voice again mesmerized the audience with pertinent dialogue about the music and performers. 

There were 74 participants this year for the seventh FAB Reunion.

                                                                                                            Larry Schmidt & Howard Bell






























No recorded music remains from this concert



Laughlin, Nevada – June 26-30, 1999


Hosts: Howard & Zelia Bell, Wes Humphrey


The Jazz Ensemble – Don Knapp, Soloist

Bonnie and Wes Humphrey


Bill McElwee and Mr. Mac


Jazz Andy now

“Sergeant Major General






















            Yes, it was hot in the desert—but who noticed?  A total of 114 really nice people and a caring staff at the Ramada Express made it a wonderful experience for our eighth FAB Reunion.  The evening cruise on the U.S.S. Riverside with a full moon illuminating our way was an unforgettable pleasure and a great photo opportunity.  The Hospitality room bathtub was well-stocked with cold sodas and booze.

The grandest thrill was to witness 500 seats filled in the auditorium one-half hour before concert time and another 150 chairs were added to make an enthusiastic audience that showed their appreciation for two hours and twenty-five minutes!  We were indebted to Honoraries Wes Humphrey and David Christensen and performers from Lake Havasu City for participating and providing equipment.  The String Orchestra, led by Arnold Schatz, performed “Rondeau” arranged by Cleo Aufderhaar; Jeanine Smith enchanted us with her virtuosity at the grand piano as she played “Anime” movement from the Quartet in A Major by Chausson; and “Siboney” was a light orchestra favorite.  Our FAB “stringers” were enlarged by volunteers from Lake Havasu City.  The Jazz Band performed “Satin Doll” and “Eyes of Texas,” an arrangement by Joe D’Gerolamo for the 1997 FAB Reunion.  Dianne D’Gerolamo presented a set of parts for “Eyes” to the FAB Jazz Band.  Andy Anderson wrote two arrangements for wife Connie to sing with the band: “Wonderful Day Like Today” and “Once Upon A Summer Time.”  “Here’s That Rainy Day” arranged by Bill Kimple was also a hit.  Protests were noted following the short rendition of “In the Mood.”  The Concert Band was led by Dawson McElwee, Wes Humphrey, Leland Knapp, Howard Bell, Jack Rumbley, Bob Smith and Larry Brumley.  The “world-class” trombone section was featured in “Holiday for Trombones.”  “Air for Mary” was written by Mac Jones to memorialize Mary McElwee.  “Armed Forces Salute” was again very popular as Jack Rumbley conducted the favorite service medley while large numbers of veterans stood proudly to honor their branch of service.  The Concert was concluded with “America the Beautiful” arranged by Carmen Dragon, conducted by Bob Smith.  A standing, cheering ovation required an encore for the loyal listeners.  We were proud of the six, second generation performers: Leland Knapp, trumpet; Donna Jo (Knapp) Sanders, flute; Bill McElwee, baritone sax; Tim Schatz, violin; Kara Schmidt, flute; and Sean Schmidt, trumpet.  First-time FAB attendees: Dan & Carolyn Lancaster, George & Marilyn Minter, “Naff” Ortega, and Bob & Jeanine Smith. 

Two convention items of interest: Beryl Pettigrew celebrated his birthday with family and provided his own gift with a substantial win in the casino.  Andy Anderson was finally promoted to a rank above PFC after 44 years!  A package arrived from a white house with starred chevrons denoting the rank of Sergeant Major General!!  Banquet MC Jack Rumbley declared Andy the “rankest” in the FAB.  With the enclosed Velcro, Andy now wears his new designation with all attire (pajamas?).                          Howard Bell                                                                           




















Music recorded by Ramada Express staff

String Orchestra – “Anime” Quartet in A Major- Chausson -Jeanine Smith, soloist

Jazz Band – “Here’s That Rainy Day” arr. Bill Kimple

Concert Band – “America the Beautiful” arr. Dragon – Bob Smith, conducting

Dallas – June 24-28, 2000






Hosts: Bill & Patti Kimple, Jack & Rose Mary Rumbley, Ron & Helen Sheppard



























Peterson Trombone Quartet.  .  .  .  .  .  .  “De Los Alanios, Venjo, Madre”

Grandpa Doug, Sons, Doug Jr & Andy and Grandson Spencer Adams

Anderson Duo  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .   .  “Thanks for You” & “Pick Yourself Up”

Connie & Andy Anderson

               Arnold Schatz, Violin   .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  “Meditation” from Thais

 Don Burnes, Reading  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . A Poem by Edgar Allen Poe

 Rumbley Trio  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .   “Anniversary Waltz”

Daughter Jill, Flute; Jack, Marimba & Rose Mary, Keyboard

 Ferguson Duet.  .  .  .  .  . “Bless This House” & “I Waited for The Lord”

Gene & Janet Ferguson


Dallas was a smashing success!  The attendance was the largest ever—121 revelers.  Bill and Patti Kimple’s Soiree was elegant: fabulous dinner, choices of drinks, marvelous desserts and a most pleasurable Jam Session with some twenty jazzers taking part well into the night.  Jack and Rose Mary Rumbley added a unique feature to Reunion 2000—a FAB Family Recital.  Our Recital setting was the 1901 Chautauqua House in Waxahachie.  Rose Mary gave the historical background and introduced the following program:












Patti Kimple procured a huge card for Mr. Mac’s 84th birthday.  All Banquet attendees signed it.  Dillard and Judy Carrera attended the FAB Banquet and enjoyed the fellowship.  Dillard was our Radio/TV officer for the “Concert In Khaki” show in the 1950s.  Jack Rumbley was the Master of Ceremonies at the Banquet.  A Memorial Service was conducted to remember FAB friends.  Three warrant officers and 52 deceased alums of the FAB were honored. 


The Concert at Mountain View Community College was a huge success.  The voice of the FAB, Don Burnes, introduced each ensemble and every performer in each.  The String Ensemble led by Arnold Schatz, featured composer-conductor Rule Beasley’s “Elegiae Remembrance,” written to honor the memory of Joe Varisco and other FABers;” Sean Schmidt, son of Larry and Cheryl, most ably performed the Allegro movement of the Hummel “Concerto for Trumpet;” and the strings also presented “Ode to

Joy” and “Brandenburg Concerto #3.”  The Pastels were reunited:  Gabe Solow, Bronx, NY on vibes: Andy Amato, Detroit, accordion; Jack Rumbley, Dallas, drums and Ron Sheppard, Dallas, bass.  Andy’s two arrangements were applauded vigorously.  The Jazz Band, led by Bill Kimple, enchanted the audience with its ability and variety.  Honorary, Bob Stanton, alto sax, was brilliant on “I Hear A Rhapsody,” George Minter’s arrangement of “Out of An Orange-Colored Sky” featured wife, Marilyn, on the vocal, “Blues Groove” arranged by George Mosse was a hit and Bill Kimple’s new arrangement “Smack FAB in the Middle” was enjoyed.  The Concert Band was conducted by five FABers, McElwee, Bell, Underwood, Rumbley and Siebern, and by guest conductors Mike Hopkins, local community band director, and Mark Hettle, director of instrumental music at the college.  Honorary Certificates were presented to the locals who performed with the ensembles, including Hopkins and Hettle.  Retired CWO Louis Wells, of the Fort Sam Houston Fifth Army Band, was an active participant and was presented with an Honorary Certificate. 

“FAB Memories and Reunions” preliminary copies were circulated at Reunion 2000.  It currently includes 125 pages of remembrances of times in the FAB, programs from the 50s, professional experiences after the FAB, information about CWOs, incidents at the Rifles Range, trips with the FAB, Memorial list, Tributes, etc.  We anticipate distributing the book at the 2001 Reunion.  Next year we plan to return to Laughlin, Nevada for the largest and most fun of any previous FAB Reunion.

Dallas Committee & Howard Bell





























Music recorded by Jim Jackson

String Orchestra – “Concerto for Trumpet” Allegro, Hummel, Sean Schmidt, soloist

The Pastels – “Bijou” Burns

Jazz Band – “Out of an Orange-Colored Sky arr. George Minter, Marilyn Minter, soloist

Concert Band – “Spirit of Texas” Claude T. Smith, Jack Rumbley, conductor

Laughlin -- June 22-27, 2001


Hosts:  Howard & Zelia Bell, Mac & Sharon Jones, Wes Humphrey, David Christensen


Seated: Joyce Hale, Rose Mary Rumbley, Mary Ratley, Sharon Siebern, Patti Kimple, Ollie Siegeler, Sammye Munson; Standing: Marianne Burnes, Becky Lee, Lucile Mumaw, Zelia Bell, Dianne D’Gerolamo, Jane Copeland, Jeanine Smith, Janet Ferguson, Mary Jane Schmeer, Marge Pettigrew, Connie Anderson, Sharon Jones

Horns:  Elizabeth McElwee, Laurel Brownlee,

 Joe Naff, Duncan Hale, and Paul Wilkinson


Jammin’:  Ed Copeland, Dan Lancaster, Jim Siegeler, “Naff” Orega,

Bill Kimple, Wes Humphrey, and Jack Rumbley































            Our second trip to the desert and casinos at Laughlin, Nevada was both warm and eventful.  We renewed acquaintance with eleven residents of Lake Havasu City, who served as gracious hosts during our Saturday excursion, a coach-ride through the scenic Southwest, a view of the London Bridge and a cruise on the Dixie Belle, followed by a picnic supper and jam session with local musicians at the high school. 

The FAB Family Recital in its second year was presented at the First Baptist Church of Laughlin.  We were greeted by a gracious congregation, and treated to a delightful reception following the program.  Sunday evening the Jam Session played to a full house of enthusiastic listeners. 

Monday night’s FAB Banquet was held in the new Coronado Room of the Ramada and was emceed by Jack Rumbley.  We missed Mr. Mac, who was unable to attend this session. There were several new people present for the first time, including Mr. Mac’s granddaughter Elizabeth.  Tuesday’s Ladies’ Luncheon speaker Harold Reed, a local historian described the history and settlement of the area. 

The Tuesday early evening Concert was well attended (perhaps to the dismay of the casinos).  The String Orchestra led by Arnold Schatz included several honoraries, and featured a clarinet solo by Herman Randolph.  The Jazz Band was also exceptional.  Bill McElwee’s bari sax solo, “Stolen Sweets,” was a highlight.  As always, fine musicians and beautiful arrangements delighted the audience.  The Concert Band premiered an arrangement by Andy Anderson of “This Is the Army,” the melody that was used to open the 4th Army radio program in the early 1950s.  Also programmed was a selection arranged by FABer Fred Teuber, “Old American Fiddle Tunes.”  The finale on the program was a patriotic selection, “December 7, 1941” with Don Burnes portraying Franklin Delano Roosevelt.  Among those who dropped coins in the casino slots were three winners of more than $1000, making the trip especially successful for them.  There were 89 happy revelers this year.                                                                Howard Bell

























No recorded music is available from this concert


Houston – June 22-26, 2002


Hosts:  Andy & Connie Anderson, Ed & Jane Copeland, Duncan & Joyce Hale, Mac & Sharon Jones, Leslie & Sammye Munson, Herman & Sandy Randolph, John & Sharon Siebern



















South Houston was a delight.  Our thanks to the committee:  the Andersons, the Copelands, the Hales, the Jones’, the Munsons, the Randolphs and the Sieberns—well done.  They provided answers for ever need.  The hotelservice was excellent and the practice/concert venue at Gloria Dei was superb.  The Hospitality Room was stocked with refreshing soft drinks and snacks to enhance our visits with new and previous acquaintances.  The 2002 FAB Reunion was our largest!—124!  What a joy to be with you again, dear friends. 

It was encouraging to find leadership from FABers who served in the 60s.  Those of us who have been leading this reunion group have reached our seventh nullen (70) and will need to pass the torch sometime soon.

The Family Recital was a huge success.  Note the variety—the quality was excellent.  Kudos to the Peterson family for their numerous, outstanding participants.



Ballade”-- Bozza & “Blue Bells of Scotland”– Pryor, John Siebern, Trombone

Recitation -- You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown”,Rose Mary Rumbley

“Romance”2nd Movement -- Wieniawski, Arnold Schatz

“Double Concerto”, 1st Movement -- Bach, Arnold & Tim Schatz, Violins

Jeanine Smith, Accompanist

“Alleluia”-- Hummel & “Bless This House” – Mary Bray, Gene & Janet Ferguson, Vocal Duet

Jeanine Smith, Accompanist

“Shy”from Once Upon a Mattress, Mallory Adams  (7th Grade), Vocal Solo

Lindy Peterson , Accompanist

“A Swan on a Moonlit Lake,”Emily Peterson (4th Grade), Piano Solo

“Lonely Goatherd”from The Sound of Music, Laura Peterson (3rd) Grade, Vocal Solo

Lindy Peterson, Accompanist

“Shenandoah”Trombone Sextet—Doug Peterson, Doug Peterson, Jr., Spencer Adams,

Benjamin Peterson, Jim Adams, & Andy Peterson

Memorial, “Jack Buck & His Meaning to St. Louisians,” Don Burnes

Announcer, Jack Rumbley


















The Sunday tour included the numerous restored World War II aircraft at the Texas Air Museum, Galveston Island, to sight-see and shop, and a ride on the Treasure Island Tour Train to view the many restored homes.  We made an impromptu visit to the Hotel Galvez and received a fascinating guided tour!

The Sunday evening Jam Session was enjoyed by an appreciative, full house.  About 15 jazzers entertained with their skills well into the night. The annual Banquet was an attractive affair including the nicely adorned attendees.  Jack Rumbley, our MC, shared letters from several colleagues who were unable to attend this year, told a few timely stories to lighted the occasion, introduced new participants including Mr. Mac’s friend Jane Bowers, and thanked the Houston Committee for being excellent hosts.  Larry Schmidt and Bev Moore invited all to return to home base, San Antonio, June 21-25, 2003 for our next FAB Reunion.  An honest drawing was conducted with some 25 door prizes.  The most desirable offering was a gorgeous Afghan prepared for our event by Mac Jones, claimed by Dolores Roumillat of Boerne.  Marianne Burnes received a unique flowerpot with motion sensitive flowers that was later disassembled by security at the Hobby Airport and returned (but did it work afterward?).  

The Ladies’ Luncheon, Monday noon, featured an instructive discussion by Robbie Gaines who encourages all Americans to support continued space exploration.  His thoughtful insight on this subject may be found on the web at  Tuesday the ladies enjoyed the boardwalk at Kemah for lunch and shopping.  As usual, interesting side events at the FAB Reunion.

The highlight of the 2002 Reunion was the Concert—two hours twenty minutes of stellar performances of varied mediums and literature.  Although the theme was “Hurrah for the Red, White and Blue,” the program included works by Handel, Gershwin, Ellington, Copland, Gould and Sousa.  The String Orchestra featured vocals by Lisa McElwee: “You’ll Never Walk Alone” & “God Bless America.”  George Minter arranged a Mercer chart, “I Wanna Be Around,” sung by wife, Marilyn, accompanied by Strings & Jazz Band.  The Jazz Band entranced the audience of 500 with “American Patrol” and Bill Kimple’s arrangement of “Bess” from Porgy & Bess.  This year’s version of The Pastels was comprised of Gabe Solow on vibes, Dave Nault at the piano, Ed Copeland with the bass and Jack Rumbley, drums.  “September in the Rain” & Ellington’s “Don’t Get Around Much Anymore” were favorites. Our largest and most complete Concert Band was conducted by: Mr. Mac, Robert McElroy, Wes Humphrey, John Siebern, Jerry Perkins, Larry Brumley and Leslie Munson.  Solos were offered by Jack Rumbley, Xylophone, “Temptation Revamp” and Alan Harvey, Houston, joined Howard Bell as they performed “Dueling Tubas.”  The final two works on the concert were welcomed by a standing, applauding audience: “Armed Forces Salute” and “Stars & Stripes Forever.” 

We were pleased to grant Honorary certificates to numerous area musicians who gave their time to perform in our ensembles.  Some have indicated they will accompany us to San Antonio next June.  Don Burnes, our indefatigable announcer introduced every participant during the evening, adding a professional touch to the proceedings. It was gratifying to have second generation performers with us.  Leland Knapp played trumpet and Babs Streit, daughter of James and Pat, a band director at Klein-Collins High School in Houston, played flute for the first time. Don Foster, 1955-57, prepared a “4th Army Band Memories” pamphlet and copies were distributed at the reunion. There are only five copies of the 135 page “FAB Memories & Reunions” book remaining. The Bells produced 62 copies on their p.c. and printer.  New procedure: this “afterglow” letter is also the supplement for your FAB Book!  The group photo was taken by Herman Randolph.  Zelia did the layout and the scanning of pictures.  Stay well, keep us informed of your whereabouts, and we’ll be back again in December to give you news about San Antonio—and more.                                                                             Houston Committee & Howard Bell




























String Orchestra – “You’ll Never Walk Alone” Rogers-Hammerstein, Lisa McElwee, soloist

Jazz Band – “American Patrol” Jerry Gray

The Pastels – “Jumpin’ With Symphony Sid” Lester Young

Concert Band – “His Honor” Henry Fillmore, Dawson McElwee, conducting

                           “A Copland Tribute” Clare Grundman, Robert McElroy, conducting


San Antonio – June 21-25, 2003


Hosts: Bev Moore, Larry & Cheryl Schmidt, Jim & Dolores Roumillat






















We refer to the July newsletter as the “afterglow” letter.  The glow is currently so bright we can’t focus on the routine after returning home from San Antonio!  Our largest participation ever—132 nice people.  So many highlights.  Let’s begin by thanking Bev Moore for arranging the hotel contract and taking the time to arrange the nostalgic visit to Ft. Sam Houston, especially the former FAB Barracks (now 323rd Band), the rehearsal hall—high-tech, the Quadrangle with an abundance of peacocks, deer, ducks and an overabundance of friendly pigeons.  We had lunch at the Ft. Sam Golf Clubhouse and the Family Recital followed.  Arnold Schatz was pleased to have his son and two daughters present as well as several other family members.  The program:



“Le Secret”.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .   .    Faure

“Almost Like Being in Love”Brigadoon   .  .  .  .  .  .  .     Loewe

Larry Brumley, Vocalist – Lucile Mumaw, Accompanist

Recitation – “Late Night Dance Radio”  .  .  .  .  .  .  .   .Don Burnes

“Double Concerto,”1st & 2nd Movements   .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .    Bach

Arnold and Tim Schatz, Violins

George Gregory & Lucile Mumaw, Accompanists

*“Diamonds Are A Girls Best Friend”– Recitation and Song

         Tribute to Carol Channing  .  .  .  .  .  . .     Rosemary Rumbley

Becky Lee, Accompanist












*Recorded at the Family Recital by Patrick Sloan


Our coach and three autos took us to the Boerne area Sunday evening for a Cookout and JamSession.  We traversed a hilly, narrow, tree-lined road to the top of a knoll and there was a breathtaking view—lovely stone home, swimming pool, trestle tables prepared for us, FAB dance band stands from the 60s in formation—a spectacular vista in all directions!  The Schmidt’s opened their lovely home to us and ordered pleasant weather with a gentle breeze.  The “Jammers” entertained us for two hours with old favorites.     

The Monday rehearsals were successful as we prepared the most important function of our FAB  Reunion—The Concert.  Monday evening, we were entertained at the Annual Banquet by Jack Rumbley, MC.  His “Top Ten Ways to Know You’re Becoming a Senior Citizen” was a hit.  Good meal, good fellowship with 98 in attendance, new faces, Hank Zwartz’s recitation, Mr. Mac’s remarks, a drawing—a very enjoyable evening!  Tuesday brought us to the climax of our 12th FAB Reunion.  The Concert was played before an audience of more than 400 in the lovely University United Methodist Church.  The String Orchestra, led by Arnold Schatz, was presented beautifully with excellent balance and blend.  Their feature selection was “Concerto Grosso” for two violins and strings by Vivaldi.  Soloists were Arnold Schatz and Cleo Aufderhaar.  Contrasting pieces by Handel and Lehar were also presented.  Mary McKinney, violin, traveled from Oklahoma to be with us and Ellen Kendig, bass, traveled with husband John from Lake Havasu City, Arizona to play in the String Orchestra and the Concert Band.  John Randolph, viola, joined his mother Sandra, who plays cello annually.  George Gregory played cello and harpsichord.  The Jazz Band was led by Andy Anderson and Ed Copeland.  Two Wolpe arrangements “Stars and Stripes Forever” and “Lazy River” were well received, as was “Stardust” with trumpeters Larry Schmidt and Don Knapp performing solos.  Bill Lee, piano, and his guest Cecil Carter, trumpet, entertained us in a guest set.  George Prado, new Honorary, was a superb bass player in the Jam Session, Jazz Band and the Concert Band.  First-time attendee Roger Brown played drums at the Jam Session and with the Jazz Band and the ConcertBand.  The Concert Band was led by Andy Anderson, Dawson McElwee, James Streit, Bob Wall, Babs Streit, Howard Bell, Sgt. Marcia Oshinski, Jack Rumbley and Norman Elliott.  “Pastime—A salute to Baseball” was given a good reading by the band according to conductor Babs Streit.  “Perhaps a bit of a stretch for two rehearsals but worth doing.”  The “Clarinet Polka,” scored for four parts, featured the entire clarinet section.  Fine clarinetist, Sgt. Marcia Oshinski from the 323rd Band was called on to conduct when CWO John Fraser had to be absent from the concert.  Her selection was “Spirit of Texas.”  Gene and Janet Ferguson sang a lovely two-part arrangement of “God Bless America” with the audience joining the second chorus to close the concert.  At Monday’s rehearsal we had no French horns—a full section on Tuesday—magic!  Moddie and Evelyn Smith called daughter April Myers, a local horn teacher, and she appeared Tuesday with three fine students, Shelby, Marsie and Aubree.  Many thanks!

 Following the Concert we reconvened at the Drury Inn to celebrate birthdays and especially the seven couples observing their 50th Wedding Anniversaries this year!  Thanks, Jim & Dolores Roumillat, for arranging for the ice cream and cake.  We are very grateful to CWO John Fraser and ten fine musicians from the 323rd Band who enhanced our rehearsals and concert.  Each was awarded an Honorary Certificate and each is certainly welcome to join us again.  One member asked to be placed on the permanent roster so he can join us in the near future.  There is a long history of cooperation between the FAB and the 323rd Bands.  First time attendees from the FAB were Paul Hashida, formerly a violinist with the String Orchestra that backed Vic Damone, and Roger Brown, drummer.  Both hail from California.  Paul is considering spending some time with his violin before next year’s performance.  Colonel (ret.) Billy Steele, clarinet, was presented an Honorary Certificate after being an admirer of the FAB for many years.  It was a pleasure to visit with wife Priscilla, too.  Mr. Mac is grateful to Billy for taking him to the Ft. Sam Infirmary twice after the reunion to obtain relief from a cold.  Second generation performers were:  John Randolph, Leland Knapp, Sean Schmidt and Babs Streit.  We appreciate them greatly—they are the future of this organization!






























Music recorded by Patrick Sloan

String Orchestra – “Concerto Grosso, Opus 68” Vivaldi, Arnold Schatz & Cleo Aufderhaar, soloists

Jazz Band – “When You’re Smiling” arr. Kubis

Concert Band – “March of the Armed Forces” arr. Sweeney, Jack Rumbley, conductor

                            “God Bless America” Gene & Janet Ferguson, soloists





Branson, Missouri – June 26-30, 2004


Hosts:  Gene & Janet Ferguson, Arnold Schatz, Don & Marianne Burnes, Howard & Zelia Bell


Gene Ferguson leads the opening rehearsal of the FAB Chorus


FAB String Alumni:  Paul Hashida, Bob Paul,

Beryl Pettigrew, Hank Zwartz, Arnold Schatz

The Next Generation:  Mary Lavery, Leland Knapp,

Judy Samfield, Tim Schatz, Jon Rickman, Kara Schmidt,

Mike Siegeler, Romaine Diamond, Cathy Siegeler, Jennifer Ball

Connie Andersonsings “St. Louis Blues” with

 the Jazz Band.  Note the original fronts

Andy Anderson and Bill Kimplediscuss a phrase while the band listens
































Branson was FAB-ulous!  Shows, shopping, delicious meals, scenery, relaxation, fellowship and MUSIC—the complete package.  This Reunion will be remembered for the above, but also as the summer of the glorious Mimosa trees.  Saturday and Sunday our group attended Branson Shows:  Shoji Tabuchi; Jim Stafford; Ray Stevens “Lost in the 50s;” Les Brown; Acrobats of China, etc.  The annual Jam Session was attended by a large appreciative audience.  It was fun to hear the old favorites.  The FAB Chorus was ably conducted by Gene Ferguson with Cathi Truesdale, Warrensburg, Mo., at the piano.  The Chorus rehearsed three times and performed twice.  The Family Recital was presented at the Grand Plaza Hotel, 9th Floor, with a spectacular view.



                            Recitation – “Tribute to Frank Fallon and Others in Early Radio”                    Don Burnes

      Violin Duet – “Double Concerto,” Two Movements                                                         Bach

Arnold Schatz and Chris Wilson

Jeannine Smith, Accompanist

       Oboe Solo – “Summertime”                                                                                          Gershwin

Mac Jones

Andy Anderson, Accompanist

        FAB Chorus – “How Lovely Is Thy Dwelling Place”                                                   Brahms

                             “Song for the Unsung Hero” - Larry Schmidt, Trumpet                                                 Martin

Gene Ferguson, Conductor

Cathi Truesdale, Accompanist


The ladies enjoyed an excursion to the Rose O’Neill home nine miles north of Branson.  It was an historical, attractive setting in the Ozark woods.  The museum contained Kewpie Dolls and examples of her art work and writings from the early 1900s.  The home revealed her love for the area with its design and setting. 

There were 110 revelers to enjoy the Banquet featuring prime rib and prime humor from MC Jack Rumbley, complimented by wife Rose Mary’s banter.  Bob and Marion Paul attended for the first time and enjoyed getting reacquainted with the other violinists who backed Vic Damone in the early 1950s:  Paul Hashida, Beryl Pettegrew, Hank Zwartz and Arnold Schatz.  It was a pleasure for the Bells to introduce Mother Bell, two daughters, Romaine and Jennifer, and musician friends from Independence and Raytown Mo. and Overland Park, Ks.  John Siebern introduced Keith and Ilene House, Fayette, Mo. and daughter-in-law Terry.  Arnold Schatz recognized his guests from Lincoln and Omaha, Neb., Jim and Ollie Siegeler welcomed son Michael and Daughter-in-law Cathy and friends Bob and Becky Barrett.  The Andersons introduced Dr. Dan and Betty Hanby.  The Randolphs were pleased to introduce daughter Judy and husband Max Samfield, their twin sons Joey and Will, and Max’s parents Isabel and Herb Posner.  Leland and Peggy Knapp introduced their children Kate and Evan.  A highlight of the evening was Mac Jones’ presentations of the framed print “July 4th Picnic” and a card signed by all attendees to Kara Schmidt and Jonathan Rickman to honor their forthcoming July 17 wedding.  Thoughtful door prizes were drawn by number.

The greatest reward during the FAB Reunion was listening to or performing in an ensemble.  The “Show-Me Spectacular” Concert was begun by the String Orchestra, directed by Arnold Schatz.  Guest cellist, Holly Stout, contributed two arrangements and anchored our first-ever string quartet.  Other members of the string quartet were Arnold, Chris Wilson and Honorary Pat Morrow who transcribed “Adagio” by Telemann.  Louis Stout, horn player from the Omaha Symphony performed “Chanson Triste,” Tchaikovsky with the orchestra.  Students of Arnold performing with the orchestra were Chris Wilson, Tim Schatz, Connie Moon and 13-year Yvonne Lin.  A wonderful presentation from the ensemble.  The Jazz Band was let by Bill Kimple and Andy Anderson.  Bill’s arrangement of “Blue Lou” was a hit and Connie Anderson’s interpretation of “St. Louis Blues” was terrific.  Andy’s impersonation of Harry Truman at the piano playing “Missouri Waltz” was very entertaining.  Local musician Colvin Hooser added greatly to the ensemble with his electronic bass, as did Cory Sugg with his baritone saxophone.  Larry Schmidt brought five of the original jazz band fronts all the way from Boerne, Tex.  The Concert Band, more than 50 strong, was led by Keith House, Director of the Columbia, Mo. Community Band as he conducted “Old Comrades” and “The Force of Destiny.”  John Siebern conducted “The Four Hornsmen” featuring six fine horn players:  Gary Alvested, Don Matthews and Mathew Huckabey from the Spirit of Independence (Mo.) Band; Louis Stout, Omaha; and Steve Snowden and Joshua Brannon from Branson.  Gene Ferguson led the 40-voice FAB Chorus backed by the Concert Band as they performed “Let There Be Peace on Earth” and Battle Hymn of the Republic.”  An ovation was received from the audience for their moving performance.  Dr. Joe Hardin, our host at the College of the Ozarks, did a fine job as he conducted music from the movie Gladiator.  Veterans stood to be recognized as Jack Rumbley conducted “Marches of the Armed Forces.”  After thanking the local people who had assisted with arrangements, Howard Bell conducted the “March of the Steelmen.”  Playing down stage solo parts were trumpeters Don Knapp, Larry Schmidt, Jon Rickman and Leland Knapp; and trombones Doug Peterson, Juel Clevenger, Dave Groebe and John Siebern.  Other guest performers were Howard’s high school/college friend Willis Pettegrew, chorus; college friend George Chase, chorus; Kim Caldwell, flute; Kristen Walker, oboe; Allen Brackin, clarinet; Jim Murphy, bass clarinet; Kent Turner, trumpet; Leon Bradley, trombone; Virginia Anthony baritone; Roy Loban, tuba; George Rankin, tuba and Dave Rice, Tuba.  Honorary certificates were presented to all performers inviting them to attend future FAB Reunions.  A note just in from Keith House: “We enjoyed being with you immensely.  The Concert was wonderful.  Thanks for inviting us.” 

Second and third generation young people are important to our future and were photographed--  Leland Knapp, Tim Schatz, Jon Rickman, Mike & Cathy Siegeler, Mary Lavery, Judy Samfield, Kara Schmidt, Romaine (Bell) Diamond and Jennifer (Bell) Ball.  The total number of participants in this year’s reunion was 137!  Four sheet cakes of various flavors and several half-gallons of ice cream were consumed following the concert as we exchanged congratulations and best wishes. 

Good health to all.                                                                                              Branson Committee



























String Quartet – “Adagio” Telemann arr. Morrow

Jazz Band – “St. Louis Blues arr. Anderson, Connie Anderson, soloist

                      “Wild Harry” / “Missouri Waltz” – arr. and pianist Andy Anderson



Corpus Christi, June 25-29, 2005


Hosts: Shirley Justus, Leland & Peggy Knapp


Concert Band, June 28, 2005


FAB Originals

Corpus Christi 2005



Front Row (L to R)  Larry Brumley, Laurel Brownlee, Duncan Hale, Roger Brown, Don Knapp, Ronald Sheppard, Dyke Schmeer


Middle Row(L to R)  Larry Schmidt, Bill Kimple, Les Munson, Doug Peterson, Andy Anderson, Bob Parker, Jim Siegeler, Howard Bell


Back Row(L to R)  Jim Roumillat, Herman Randolph, Don Burnes, Mac Jones, Jack Rumbley, Art Ratley


Missing the Picture:  Bev Moore, Arnold Schatz, Beryl Pettigrew, and Leon Young











































The FAB Reunion of June 25-29, 2005 on the Bay of Corpus Christi, was very satisfying for the 90 attendees.  If you weren’t able to be with us your ears may have burned because we rehashed all the old FAB stories—Falcon Dam with President Eisenhower; at the rifle range; Sgt. Lee in supply; marching into the reviewing stand; erratic hours of some of the men in the barracks; preparation of the weekly radio show; working with Morton Gould and others at the TBA; Mr. McElwee waltzing around the military; and on and on.  Saturday evening, we had dinner in small groups and then attended the Jam Session.  The stars were Mark Anderson, new Honorary from Duluth, all over his bass; Don Knapp, trumpet; Lou Wells, trombone; Jack Rumbley and Roger Brown, drums; and Beryl Pettigrew on claves. 

            Sunday found us fantasizing about previous war years as we examined the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Lexington with numerous aircraft, and toured the intimate living apace.  Nearby was the Texas State Aquarium with its breathtaking diversity of fish and flora.  In the afternoon, a dozen of us rehearsed with the Corpus Christi Municipal Band under the direction of Loren Hall.  Later that evening the 75-piece band played a summer program with much variety that was well received by a crowd on the hillside with the added enjoyment of a soft breeze from the bay.  Our announcer, Don Burnes, arrived in time to participate in the Muni Band Concert.  Following that pleasant experience with the C.C. musicians, we invited them to join us at our hotel for refreshments, provided by Shirley Justus.  Although we met at the pool, the sedate group didn’t christen a single guest.

            Monday morning found everyone in attendance and a serious effort to prepare the Concert Band.  With the interest of the C.C. Municipal Band members our ranks increased to near sixty.  Second generation flutes included Kara Rickman, Jennifer Brownlee, Jill Beam and Natalie Haddock.  Five guest flute players were Leslie Albrecht, Frances Branning, Belan Palos-Tully, Alicia Purdy and Linda Weber.  Joy Killian played oboe.  Clarinets joining our members were Ralph Goonan, Sandra Laskowski, Benny Martinez and Robert Behr.  Wanda Christian played bass clarinet, Dwight Behr played a dual role—tenor sax with the Jazz Band and baritone sax in the Concert Band.  John Wojcik and Mary Thornton played trumpet.  Juan Villalpando, who played trombone in the Concert Band and Jazz Band, reported listening to our “Concert in Khaki” programs in the 50s and delighted seeing us in the San Antonio Parades.  Jason Johnston, fiancé of Jennifer Brownlee, performed in the percussion section of the Concert Band. 

The String Orchestra and Jazz Band rehearsed in the afternoon.  Arnold Schatz led the orchestra composed of violins, Achille DiRusso (a colleague from the Cincinnati Symphony), former student Merwinna Stevens, Krystle DeLeon and Cassandra Cao; former student Barbara Chasson of Veracruz, Mexico and Jess Barrera, violas; Sandy Randolph, Claire Onuf, John Latimer and David Moreno, celli; and Patrick Sloan, bass.

Monday evening’s Banquet attracted 80 people and was a big success thanks to the arrangements made by Leland Knapp.  Jack Rumbley was our MC and kept the evening entertaining.  Arnold Schatz, Achille DiRusso and Barbara Chasson formed a fine trio and performed “Terzetto” by Dvorak for our pleasure.  Forty door prizes were drawn to complete the evening. 

The Tuesday evening FAB Concert was well attended by friends of the band members from far and wide and by the enthusiastic members of the First Baptist Church.  Each of the three performing groups paid homage to Mr. Mac with a dedicated selection at the Concert. The String Orchestra opened the program with “The Star-Spangled Banner” and followed with the “Adagio” by Wagner featuring clarinet soloist Herman Randolph.  The Samuel Barber “Adagio for Strings” was dedicated to Mr. Mac, and they closed with “Will You Still Need Me,” a Beatles tune.  Bill Kimple led the Jazz Band and String Orchestra as they combined in an arrangement of Bill’s, “And I Will Love Again.”  The personnel of the Jazz Band:  alto sax, Ed Copeland and Les Munson; tenor sax, Bill Kimple and Dwight Behr; bari sax, Mac Jones; trumpets, Don Knapp, Larry Schmidt, Jon Rickman, John Wojcik, Leland Knapp, and Jim Siegeler; trombones, Doug Peterson, Juan Villalpando, Louis Wells and Leon Young; piano, Andy Anderson; bass, Patrick Sloan; and drums, Roger Brown.  As always, a smooth, smooth group.  They dedicated Joe D’s arrangement of “The Eyes of Texas” to Mr. Mac, and followed it with a new ditty titled “Bill’s Tune” contributed by their fearless leader.

The Concert Band rehearsed and performed a work written by Mac Jones in memory of CWO Dawson McElwee, “In Memorium.”  Other conductors were Andy Anderson, Leland Knapp, Loren Hall, Ron Sheppard, Jack Rumbley and Howard Bell.  Don Burnes served as our MC and liaison with the public as he has done at every reunion.   We had numerous guests and Don did a marvelous job of introducing everyone.  We appreciated the use of the First Baptist Church and the assistance of the staff.  The lunches available at the church were excellent as was the Ice Cream Social in the new parlor following the Concert.

In an e-mail Judy McElwee Scull wrote:

“We. the McElwee children wanted to let all of you at the 2005 4th Army Band Reunion, that we are all thinking about you, and the wonderful music you will be making.  We also know that you, as we, will be missing my ‘Pop’ especially at this time.  My father talked about the reunions all year.  When he was planning to go, going, and when he came back with tapes, pictures and wonderful stories.  I am sure that the last years of his life were filled with happy memories of the times he spent in San Antonio, Nevada, New Orleans and the other sites where the reunions took place.  As you all go about your rehearsals, concerts and dinners this week know that my ‘Pop’ will be there in spirit.  I am sure you will feel his presence.  He will be grinning that wide Irish smile as he sits with one leg up on the arm of the chair, in the best seat in the house.  God Bless You All and have a great reunion.  Love, Judy McElwee Scull and the McElwee Clan.

“P.S.  You might be interested to know that the family gave his trumpet to his former student Larry Gittens who came from California to his funeral and Played ‘Amazing Grace’ in a jazz idiom.  He used the mouthpiece that he expressed “Mr. McElwee gave me in third grade.’  Larry is now with ‘Cool and the Gang.’  He and his wife own vineyards and are raising two children.”

Bob and Pat Lavery wrote to say that “Bob has had surgeries lately to get relief from facial pain.  The pain is gone but he is left with numbness on the right side of his face.  Hopefully this will improve.  We are scheduled to move to Elkhart, Indiana in late July.  Our best to all.”  

     Corpus Christi Committee & Howard Bell































String Orchestra – “Adagio” Richard Wagner, Herman Randolph, soloist

Jazz Band – “That Old Black Magic” Bob Eberhart

                      “Bill’s Tune” Bill Kimple, composer & soloist

Concert Band – “In Memoriam” Mac Jones, composer & conductor

                            “The Blue and the Gray” – Clare Grundman, Leland Knapp, conductor




Bossier City/Shreveport, June 24-27, 2006


Hosts: Doug & Jane Peterson


Sunday afternoon at Red River Overlook





















Peterson Trombone Quartet

Bossier City/Shreveport was a very special experience.  FABers and friends totaled 104 and all enjoyed the exceptional hospitality from our hosts Doug and Jane Peterson.  The Saturday afternoon Peterson Family Recital at the Noel Memorial United Methodist Church was a joy for the FAB attendees and members of the church.  Trombone ensembles, vocal solos, piano solos, oboe solo, and a grand finale “Bless This House” by the entire family made an extraordinary event.


 Our adventure to Natchitoches (Nacotich) began early Sunday morning on a comfortable coach.  We had a brief rest stop and then picked up a hitchhiker dressed as

Cammie Henry, who continued in that role for our tour to Melrose Plantation and on to Natchitoches.  Cammie Henry was the owner of Melrose and patron of the arts in the area at the turn of the 20th Century.  She entertained authors, artists and musicians at the Big House (ca 1883) and “they were welcome to stay so long as they worked and contributed to a creative effort. We visited the other structures on the grounds, including the Yucca House (ca 1796) and the African House (ca 1800).  The stately moss-laden oak trees and a banana tree added to the setting.  In Natchitoches we viewed the homes that were mindful of New Orleans and we especially enjoyed seeing the homes featured in the movie “Steel Magnolias.”  Lunch was a treat with a choice of Cajun Baked Potato with Shrimp, Meat Pie and Dirty Rice, or Steak with spices.  On the return trip we stopped at a visitor’s center of the U. S. Corps of Engineers to view the scenic Red River as it had been rerouted for navigational purposes.

 Sunday evening all had recovered from the trip and we appreciated the Jam Session provided by our members and friends.  It was good to again hear the old favorites.  We had a guest claves performer Beryl Pettigrew, who was featured on a Latin piece.

Monday morning the Concert Band rehearsed in the brand new Bossier Parish Community College performing arts center.  The band director, Dr. Michael Hart, was most helpful and practices were satisfying.  We all met at Barksdale AFB to visit the museum and view the several aircraft outside and then ate a buffet lunch at the Officer’s Club.  The afternoon rehearsals of the String Ensemble and Jazz Band were efficient.  The Banquet at Ralph & Kacoos was excellent, again with five choices of entrée’ and featured delicious Cajun food.  Rose Mary served as our Emcee and conducted us through amusing and “Little Known Facts About U.S. Presidents.”  A large drawing of prizes was held to conclude the evening It was comforting to notice that Beryl Pettigrew is still able to fit in his famous navy and white jacket that he has worn to all the FAB Reunions.  Tuesday the rehearsals were successful and final choices for the Concert were made.  The ladies were treated to a lovely luncheon in the garden of the Peterson home.  Tuesday evening the Concert was held before a large enthusiastic audience at the BPCC.  The String Ensemble was a solid harmonious group polished by Arnold Schatz.  Arnold had a former student, Chris Reed, perform with the ensemble and Chris had a student perform.  Johnette LeBlanc, a local string teacher, performed and brought several experienced students.  The featured selection unveiled the alto trombone of John Siebern, brilliantly played and a new sound to many.  John also performed with his tenor trombone.  The final selection of the strings was “When I’m Six-four,” by Lennon and McCartney.  The Jazz Band,led by Bill Kimple, was also well received.  They played favorites, “All of Me,” “When You’re Smiling,” “I Cried for You,” You’d Be So Nice To Come Home To,” and closed with a showy piece, “The Preacher.”  The several soloists were warmly acknowledged.

 The Concert Band was enhanced by local musicians whom we made Honorary members.  Those included Nikki Baez, Ted Beagley, Ron Buckoff, Dr. Hart, Frank Hess, Ted Hopkins, Robert Kennedy, Courtney Robinson, the Vowell family—Andrew, Harry and Cheryl, Donald Walters and Linda Wolfe.  Cheryl Schmidt also became an Honorary for playing alto saxophone with the band after what she termed “a layoff of 30 years.”  Conductors were Andy Anderson, Dr. Hart, Mac Jones, Jim Streit, Howard Bell, Babs Streit and Larry Brumley.  The Concert was recorded by Patrick Sloan.  His son, Patrick, Jr. was a charmer and was elected to the rank of Private in a brief ceremony by Sgt. Major General Jazz Andy.  We were also pleased to welcome Frances Haller’s friend Lou Nachbauer to our family.  Our own Jim Siegeler was featured in a 3-column picture and 5-column story about his army experience, career, and “Lee County Waltz” that he wrote.  The Commissioners proclaimed it the official song for the county in April.  Jim played in the FAB under the direction of Mr. Mobley and returned to Giddings in 1954 to barber and play gigs and then was an insurance salesman for 30 years.  He resumed playing the trumpet and was introduced to “Band In A Box”—connected to a computer and able to reproduce all the instrument sounds.  He still plays gigs at age 79 with Ollie joining him at the keyboard.  On a sad note we lost a FABer in April.  Phil Miller passed away from complications of multiple myeloma.  He conducted the Univ. of Kentucky Symphony for 30 years, taught advanced conducting and applied clarinet.  He was drum major of the FAB in the early 1950s.  Wife Sally wrote, “I am so sad we were never able to join a 4th Army Band Reunion.”  We have been invited to return to Branson, Missouri, June 23-27, 2007.  The Grand Plaza Hotel with all its amenities will be available to us.  View to see what performers and shows are playing on the dates of interest.  We have reserved a block of only 35 rooms.  It would be wise to make a decision early in 2007 to reserve your room in the headquarters hotel.  The College of the Ozarks music facilities will again be made available to us, and the Concert will be held in their auditorium Tuesday evening, June 26 at 7:00 pm.                                                                                                  The Petersons & Howard Bell




Treasurer Mac Jones and wife Sharon




Around the table from left to right:

 Marge and Beryl Pettigrew, Louis Wells, Frances Haller, the back of Andy Anderson, and Lou Nachbauer.













































































































Music recorded by Gary Alvested

String Orchestra - “La Roujouissance” Handel



Branson, June 23-27, 2007


Hosts:  Howard & Zelia Bell




The Branson Reprise was a big success and the afterglow is still strong.  While rain was a big issue elsewhere we were not affected.  Our Sunday visit to the new Branson Landing was enjoyed with many purchases from the exotic shops.  Old-time penny candy not seen for decades was a nostalgic hit.  Supper at Garfield’s was both timely and delicious.


The Sunday evening Jam Session was one of the best ever, with our regulars Andy Anderson, Don Knapp, Roger Brown and Tom Jenkins joined by new Honoraries John Rafferty (keyboard, Les Brown Band), Steve Cox, trombone and Al Lohman, drums.  Jim Streit practiced “Orange Blossom Special” with the group.  Don Knapp is an amazing guy, resilient and a superb trumpet player for concert and jazz.  Daughters Donna Sanders and Clary Rocchi were in attendance and enjoyed the events.  The Banquet produced a new MC.  With Jack Rumbley on Sick Call,Andy Anderson stepped to the fore and did a fine job.  In fact, Sgt. Major General Jazz Andy was quite the star of the Reunion

as he performed at the Jam Session, played clarinet and conducted the Concert Band, played keyboard with the Jazz Band, arranged Jim Streit’s fiddle tune, arranged “Thanks for the Memories” for the Bells and emceed the Banquet!  A close runner-up was Larry Schmidt as he played a solo and conducted the Concert Band, and soloed with the Jazz Band, uncorking several “out-of-sight” notes.  The Schmidts and Rickmans won the contest for attending the most events in Branson for which they may receive a citation of appreciation from the Chamber of Commerce. 

The Banquet was the site for a presentation of an album of letters for the Bells for their assistance preparing the FAB Reunions the past 20 years.  The Bells, Ferguson and Teubers met in Columbia, South Carolina in 1987 to begin the process of recalling and notifying FABers of the first reunion in Kansas City in 1988.  The Bells announced they would host their final reunion next year in Kansas City, however there is a succession plan in place for years to come led by second-generation members.  The Banquet concluded with a drawing of donated items from across the country that pleased recipients

The Ladies Luncheons offered special treats—good tastes, good vistas, good fellowship and good shopping.

The Concert was the highlight of Reunion 2007.  The intrepid Arnold Schatz led the String Ensemble.  Their selections from Handel to Mancini were excellent but the most applause was given to Gene and Janet Ferguson as they harmonized “Bess This House” arranged for them by Fred Tauber.  The Fergusons drove from South Carolina to be with us!  Tim Schatz joined his father on violin and Beryl Pettigrew came out of retirement to assist.  Patrick Sloan played cello.  The Jazz Band in an extraordinary performance played old favorites “Tuxedo Junction,” “Stardust” and “Just in Time.”  The crowd-pleaser was Jim Streit’s “Orange Blossom Special” played on his electrified fiddle with wife Pat at the keyboard.  John Rafferty did a wonderful vocal on “What Goes Good With Blue.”  The Jazz Band completed their set with Jazz Andy’s arrangement of “Thanks for the Memories,” sung by spouses and dedicated to the Bells.  Anchoring the trombone section was Steve Cox who inspired all.  What a fine trumpet section with one new face—Dwight Rhodes from Kansas City.  Rhythm:  Anderson, Sloan and Brown.  Saxes:  Tina Clausse (Director of Jazz studies, Drury University), Springfield; Becky Wells, Springfield; Kimple;  Archie Wheeler, Branson; and Copeland.  Trumpets:  Knapp, Richman, Schmidt, Rhodes and Jenkins.   Trombones: Cox, Peterson, Clevenger, Groebe and Siebern 

The Concert Band covered the spectrum of styles and periods with nine conductors.  Guest Conductor Bob Scott of Springfield, tackled the tough chart “Ramparts” by Clifton Williams.  The band gave a very respectable reading.  Bob Dill from Dorena, Oregon led the “Marches of the Armed Forces” appreciated by some 75 veterans.  Jon Rickman conducted “La Virgen de la Macarena” as father-in-law Larry Schmidt played his trumpet brilliantly.  Other conductors were Andy Anderson, Larry Schmidt, Babs Streit, Noah Lee, James Goldapp and Howard Bell.  Clary Rocchi, Austin, Texas anchored the clarinet section.  Branson players were: James Goldapp, Andrew Hernandez, Allen Brackin and Jim Murphy, clarinet.  Regulars were Dill and Anderson.  Branson flutes Kim Caldwell and Karen Phillips joined Kara Rickman and Babs Streit.  Saxes included Ed Copeland, Cheryl Schmidt, Bill Kimple, Connie Harbers, and Vincent Pulcini, Branson.  Additional trumpets were Bob Parker and Branson player Kent Turner.  French horns:  Gary Alvested and Howard Bell.  Baritones:  Art Ratley, Dyke Schmeer and Dalton Harbers.  Tubas:  Ron Shepard, Roy Loban and George Rankin.  Percussion:  Jim Roumillat, Larry Brumley and Roger Brown.  A memorable FAB Concert, honored with a standing ovation from the audience.

 Ice cream and cake prepared at the Grand Plaza was enjoyed following the concert.  Anniversaries and significant birthdays were acknowledged with fun and respect.  First-time attendees:  Bob & Alice Scott, Springfield; Bill Nash (French horn, 1950) Norfork, Ark; Steve and Connie Cox, Nacogdoches, Tex.  Hank Zwartz brought longtime friend Mike Schneider from Ill., the Kimples brought Muriel Clayton, the Roumillats brought Dalton & Connie Harbers, Blanco, Tex., and Olga Voight.  The attendance this year was 88.  Planning to attend but unable because of health issues were Otis Claxton, the Randolphs, the Laverys, the Rumbleys, and the Siegelers.  We anticipate full recovery and attendance in 2008.  The Grand Plaza gave us a warm welcome, decorating the Hospitality Room with patriotic colors and providing a sumptuous daily buffet breakfast.  Personnel were helpful in all ways.  We thank the staff, especially Darlene, Bonnie and Jack.  We are grateful to the College of the Ozarks for hosting our performers and sponsoring the Concert.  James Goldapp was helpful in notifying local performers and listeners to attend our events.  Gayle Goldapp was a thoughtful participant, too.  Patrick Sloan recorded the events.  His son, Patrick, Jr., was elevated to rank of Corporal this year by administrative action.

Plan to Attend next year’s FAB Reunion 2008 in Kansas City.  We’ll meet one week later than usual due to hotel commitments—June 28-July 2.  The Grand Concert will be Tuesday, July 1.  Enjoy hickory smoked barbequed meats, soul food and the American Jazz Museum at 18th and Vine and many other special events because “Everything’s Up To Date in Ka-a-n-sas City.”  Come and celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the most unique military reunion group in the country.


Seated: Janet & Bob Dill, Roy & Margaret Loban

Standing: Gary Alvested & Howard Bell

To our dear friends:  You’re not the only ones who think in song lyrics.  “We belong to a mutual admiration society.”  A heartfelt thank-you to all who made our reunion dreams come true by advising, doing leg work, setting up city sites and adventures, attending, conducting, playing, and participating in every way.  Thanks to each of you. 


Howard & Zelia Bell



Frances Haller & Lou Nachbauer enjoy the Branson Water Front














No music examples available.



Kansas City, June 28-July 2, 2008 – 20 Years


Hosts:  Howard & Zelia Bell


The Originals 2008

Front row:  Jones, Ratley, Siebern, Schmidt, Brumley, Picou

Middle row:  Parker, Anderson, Schatz, Munson, Rumbley, Knapp, Brown

Top row:  Streit, Elliott, Pettigrew, Roumillat, Bell, Stewart, Kimple, Shepard





















My final “afterglow” is filled with Thank You comments for making the K.C. “Brotherhood of the Band” event so pleasurable.  To you, faithful FABers, family, high school and college mates, former students, retired teaching colleagues, Kiwanians and fellow residents of Parkway Towers, we couldn’t have hosted a reunion of 158 people without your encouragement and cooperation!

Our 20th-year event began again at the hotel in Westport as it did in 1988.  Saturday evening was a triple-header:  Chorus rehearsal; Cookout with meats smoked (apple & pecan woods) on site, concluding with freshly-baked cakes by Mother Bell and Lucile Mumaw; and the Jam Session on the Garden Terrace.  Fortunately, the wind receded to allow a beautiful evening outdoors.  The Jammers included U.M.K.C. student William Sanders on tenor sax; Bill Kimple, tenor sax; Don Knapp, trumpet; Jazz Andy, keyboard; Tom Harrington, bass from Olathe, Kansas; and Jack Rumbley and Roger Brown on drums. 

On Sunday our coach tour included the only World War I Museum in the U.S. and its 17-story Tower.  Following lunch at Crown Center 20 people chose to visit the Arabia Steamboat Museum, while 35 chose to visit the American Jazz Museum with its interactive display; and finally the memorial Kauffman Gardens—a tribute from daughter to her parents, Ewing and Muriel Kauffman, generous contributors to citizens of K.C.  We enjoyed pasta in the evening at Figlio’s on the Country Club Plaza.

Monday began the important ritual of making music.  We are indebted to Mike McBain for providing his trap set and percussion equipment for Jazz Band and Concert Band and to Gary Alvested for tympani and music stands for the performance groups.  The Concert Band took shape quickly with the expertise of conductors Andy Anderson, John Stewart (1st-time attendee), Honorary Pam Kelly, Honorary Joe Parisi (U.M.K.C. faculty), Babs Streit, Jack Rumbley, Howard Bell and Honorary Bill Grace.  The Monday Ladies Luncheon was at Californo’s in a lovely outdoor setting.  The Jazz Band rehearsed in the afternoon with assistance from three fine U.M.K.C. students: Michael Schults, alto sax, William Sanders, tenor sax; and Ben Leifer, bass.  Honorary Bob Cochran, alto sax, along with Bill Kimple, tenor sax and Mac Jones, bari-sax, completed the sax section.  Honoraries Juel Clavenger, Dave Groebe and Lynn Garrison assisted John Siebern in the trombone section.  Trumpets included Don and Leland Knapp, Larry Schmidt, Jon Rickman, Art Picou and Honorary Dwight Rhodes.  Andy Anderson, piano and Jack Rumbley, drums, completed the Jazz Band.  The Orchestra under the direction of Arnold Schatz was enlarged to full orchestra with a large contingent of Schatz students and friends from Lincoln, Nebraska.  Amy Petersen, Jessica Qiu, Eajan Hsu, Lisa Watkins, Tim Schatz, Darrin Lim and Kevin Cherng played violin.  Jim Streit, and H. Bell friends Carol Chatelain, Jennifer Anderson and Vickie Brock completed our largest violin section.  Honoraries, Pat Morrow from Lincoln, Barbara Chasson from Veracruz, Mexico, Amy Sadler, Raytown and FABer Norman Elliott formed the viola section.  Honorary Jim Swain, Olathe, Kansas, Sandy Randolph and Honorary Kasey Wasson from Lee’s Summit comprised the cello section.  Band winds and percussion filled out our first full orchestra instrumentation.  The addition of Phaedra Miller, harpist from Olathe, Kansas, enhanced both the Orchestra and Concert Band performances.  The Chorus was comprised of FABers, members of the Raytown Community Choir and friends.  Chorus Honoraries included Bonnie George, Fran Haller, Peggy Knapp, Becky Lee, Andrea Miller, Janet Picou and Sandy Playter, sopranos; Zelia Bell, Elaine Eiserer, Ann Grace, Lucile Mumaw, Marjorie Pettigrew and Paulette Thompson, altos; Larry Brumley, George Chase, Beryl Pettigrew and Jeffrey Reed, tenors: and Howard Bell, Ed Coulter, Jack Eiserer, Bill Grace, Dave Groebe, Lou Nachbauer, Larry Reed and Ron Shepard, baritones. 

Monday evening the Banquet was held at the Union Hill Veterans Hall—a patriotic venue, and decorated attractively by Margaret Loban and her committee.  Eighty-eight guests enjoyed a home-cooked meal.  A photo was taken of the “originals” in attendance.  H. Bell distributed 20-year certificates and a drawing was enjoyed.  Juel and Nancy Clevenger won Mother Bell’s hand appliqued baby quilt/hanging piece.  Our multitalented Jack Rumbley served as master of ceremonies and offered an entertaining monologue.

The Tuesday luncheon for all was held at the Community Christian Church.  Big Mama’s box lunch was plentiful and delicious.  Everyone gave close attention to President Harry Truman (Neil Johnson) as he expounded on his years as the 33rd President of the U.S.  Zelia received the repertoire lists for the program at 2:30 p.m. and copies were printed in time for the Concert.

Honorary Andrew Yates, our announcer, recalled his radio show 20 years ago that he presented in honor of the FAB.  In 1988 the group was becoming reacquainted after 35 years. We sat at Chili’s Restaurant in Westport and listened to the program he presented in honor of the FAB.  He also played in the percussion section for the first reunion concert.  There were many highlights for our 2008 Concert.  The male quartet opened the program singing “The Star-Spangled Banner” accompanied by the Jazz Band in an arrangement by Andy Anderson.   They saluted Count Basie with “April in Paris” and once again


Howard Bell and Guest Conductor Pam Smith

reveled in Joe D’s arrangement of “Eyes of Texas.”  The fine Orchestra performance—especially Pam Smith conducting her father’s “Prelude on an Early American Folk Hymn” included the uplifting sounds of the harp; the Bach Double Concerto performed by Arnold and his students and the moving “God of Our Fathers” with Chorus and Audience.  John Stewart, FAB Rehearsal Conductor from 1952-54 in San Antonio, conducted the FAB Concert Band for the first time as he led the Sousa march “Sound Off.”  Maureen Smith, widow of Claude T., was present and received a bouquet of flowers from the FAB.  Daughter Pam conducted Claude Smith’s most popular work “Emperata,” and Joe Parisi did a brilliant job on “Incidental Suite.”  All of the band selections received rousing applause and a standing ovation was offered after the final selection, “Battle Hymn of the Republic,”


conducted by Bill Grace.  Musicians not previously mentioned who comprised the Concert Band:  Flutes, Kara Rickman, Jill Beam, Donna Sanders and Barbara Hale; Oboe, Andrew Brown: Bassoons, Ann McCoy and Larry Ryner; Clarinet, Clary Rocchi, Bob Roberts, Bob Cochran, Lisa Stanley, Noah Lee, Nalleyn Jones and Les Munson;  Alto Saxophone, Michael Schults and Cheryl Schmidt; Tenor Saxophone, Connie Harbers; Trumpet, John Starr, Bob Parker, James Streit, Tom Jenkins and Bob Morrow;  French Horn, Gary Alvested, Doug Shaw, Don Matthews and Leland Knapp; Trombone, Alex Hamilton; Baritone Horn, Dalton Harbers, Buck Buchanan and Art Ratley; Tuba, Ron Sheppard, Roy Loban, Richard Chatelain and George Rankin;  Percussion, Jim Roumillat, Larry Brumley and Michael McBain.  All four ensembles were excellent.  Performers and families enjoyed the social period after the concert.  The Steeple of Light rose above the church to honor the musicians who brought the fine concert to Kansas City, illuminating the love radiating from within on this historic night.  The administrator at the Community Christian Church stated the Concert was such a highlight to the church they would like for us to return.  We suggested these Texans and others were about as far from home as they would go and the next few years would find us back in Texas.  A CD of the July 1 Concert was prepared by Gary Alvested.

Next year’s FAB Reunion will be in San Antonio June 27-July 1.  The Schmidt’s and committee are planning a wonderful event: Saturday, BBQ at Cheryl & Larry’s house on the hill, with Mariachi


It’s time for a break!

Twenty years of correspondence, planning, and attending reunions.

 Music and special music by the TopClass Band is scheduled.  Sunday, tour the New Nimitz Museum in Fredericksburg, visit to Enchanted Strings and a Jam Session.  Ladies’ Luncheons and shopping Monday and Tuesday at area malls are planned for spouses.  Rehearsals of the Concert Band, Jazz Band and Orchestra are as always on Monday and Tuesday.  The format is set, come enjoy the fellowship and music.  Stay well. Zelia and I will see you in San Antonio next June.                                              Howard Bell






The Concert Band and Choir 2008




















































Music recorded by Community Christian Church staff

Jazz Band - “How Do You Keep the Music Playing” Bill Kimple

Chorus and Orchestra – “God of Our Fathers” Pam Smith Kelly,


Concert Band – “Incidental Suite” Smith, Joseph Parisi, conductor

San Antonio, June 27-July 1, 2009


Hosts:  Larry & Cheryl Schmidt, Jon and Kara Rickman, Dalton & Connie Harbers,

Jim & Delores Roumillat


Excerpts from “Stories that Need to be Told” by An Olde Soljar -- Art Ratley


There was an event that happened recently in San Antonio, Texas that brought together a group of people who had been together in that city fifty plus years ago.  It was an unusual group of old soldiers who had a lot in common.  They liked to play music.  Those attending this event were: Howard Bell, Larry Brumley, Norman Elliott, Mac Jones, Bill Kimple, Bev Moore, Leslie Munson, Bob Parker, Doug Peterson, Beryl Pettigrew, Art Picou, Art Ratley, Gary Rosenblatt, Jim Roumillat, Jack Rumbley, Arnold Schatz, Larry Schmidt, Leland Schultz, Ron Sheppard, John Siebern, Jim Siegeler, James Streit, Jervis Underwood, and Louis Wells.  These folks plus many other local musicians and honorary members of the famous U.S. Fourth Army Band gathered at the Drury Hotel on Saturday, June 27th for five days of renewing friendships, storytelling and making music.  The day started with registration at the hotel, followed by a trip to one of the most picturesque ranches in all the beautiful hill country of Texas.  This guy, Larry Schmidt, and family invited the whole bunch out to the ranch for a Texas style BBQ with entertainment by the “Top Class” band led by Jon and Kara Rickman.  The next day, most of this same group took a bus to Fredericksburg for a tour of the Nimitz museum, and lunch, followed by a social gathering back at the hotel in the evening.  It was hot outside and the A/C at the hotel felt good.  Monday roll call was at the University United Methodist Church.  Then something strange happened.  While most of the ladies went about town on a goodwill trip, those that were to play with the band began to take their seats on the stage.  All of a sudden, the band began to play as if they were presenting a radio show like that band had done 50 years earlier.  Someone remarked that it was almost like Mr. McElwee was leading the band again with Andy Anderson’s arrangement of “This is the Army.”  Following two days of rehearsals by the Concert Band, the Jazz Band, and the String Ensemble, these groups performed before a very appreciative audience on Tuesday night. All this was made possible by the hard work of the host committee of Larry, Cheryl, Jon, Kara, Dalton, Connie, Jim and Dolores.  Many thanks go to these people plus all the local


4th Army Band Originals – 2009

Front row: Larry Brumley, Jim Streit, Howard Bell, Norman Elliott, Jimmy Siegeler, Bill Kimple, Art Ratley

Back row:  Larry Schmidt, Les Munson, Bob Parker, Bev Moore, Beryl Pettigrew, John Siebern, Ron Shepard, Mac Jones, Jack Rumbley, Jim Roumillat, Arnold Schatz, Doug Peterson

musicians and the honorary band members.  Other highlights of this event include the Banquet at the Fort Sam Houston Golf Clubhouse. Good food, and great entertainment from long time MC Sgt. Jack Rumbley. It was noted that this year the group was missing some very faithful reunion attendees, but they will never forget that booming radio voice of Don Burnes, the Jazz piano artistry of Edgar “Andy” Anderson, the beautiful and powerful voice of Gene Ferguson, and those jokes of that great drummer Roger Brown.  It has been said that this reunion group was started by Howard Bell and friends many years ago to


honor Mr. Dawson McElwee.  To understand why this group keeps on doing these things, you would just have to attend these events, partake of the birthday cake, look around the room and observe the expressions on each face, as they get together one more time with their friends.  It should happen again.     































Music recorded by Gary Alvested

String Ensemble – “Serenade” Schubert

Jazz Band – “The Shadow of Your Smile” arr. Wolpe

Concert Band – “Lee County Waltz” Siegeler  

                          “My Way” Bell Dedication, Babs  Streit, conductor



Houston - The Woodlands, June 26-29, 2010


Hosts:  Babs Streit, John & Sharon Siebern, Ed Copeland, Arnold Schatz


The members of the FAB Reunion Band met in suburban Houston for another delightful gathering of fellowship, music, and adventure.  Our Sunday excursion led us north to a lunch stop and the George Bush Presidential Library and Museum in College Station, Texas (dedicated in 1997).  On Monday and Tuesday, those not in performing groups visited shopping venues and other areas of interest.  Rehearsals proceeded on Monday and Tuesday, augmented by musicians recruited by our intrepid hosts, with a resulting concert of outstanding interest to all.                                                                                                             Zelia Bell










The Originals – 2010

Front Row:  Les Munson, Jim Siegeler, Jervis Underwood, John Siebern,

 Doug Peterson

Middle Row:  Arnold Schatz, Laurel Brownlee, Howard Bell,

Jim Roumillat, Mac Jones

Back Row:James  Streit, Duncan Hale, Norman Elliott, Bob Parker,

Larry Schmidt

Concert Band

Arnold Schatz introduces orchestra program

Jazz Band in full swing

Jon Rickman & Larry Schmidt


































































































Music recorded by Gary Alvested

String Orchestra – “God Bless America” Berlin

Jazz Band – “Stardust” trumpet duet, Larry Schmidt & Jon Rickman

                     “Little Brown Jug” arr. Billy May

Concert Band – “The Sinfonians” Jervis Underwood, conductor



Dallas  - Mesquite, June 23-27, 2011


Hosts: Jill (Rumbley) Beam, Ken Beam, Rose Mary Rumbley

It was a real Texas  party, with a live rodeo on the grounds.  Following our Texas barbeque, we were invited to attend the rodeo prelims next door before adjourning to the music of the Jam Session.  A bus tour of Dallas narrated by our personal Dallasite, Rosemary Rumbley, included a visit to her personal collection room in the library at Texas Baptist University.  The FAB Banquet was in Texas style with fajitas prepared by Ken Beam, and a troupe of Mexican dancers.  We were delighted to have  Tim Schatz. Cathy Steinhauer,  and Margaret McManus, children of  Arnold Schatz  with us for the reunion events.   Tim often plays violin with his father and the String Orchestra, and his sisters also attended reunion events in San Antonio in 2009.  After a picnic lunch in the park the next afternoon,  the reunion members joined members of the Mesquite Symphonic Band in an outdoor concert, warm both in fellowship and climate.    



FAB Reunion, Mesquite, Texas, 2011

Back Row:  Art Ratley, Patrick Sloan, Patrick Sloan, Jr., Mark Munson, Bill Kimple

Middle Row:  Gary Alvested, Les Munson, Dalton Harbers, _____, Dwight Rhodes, Connie Harbers,,Tom Jenkins

Front Row:  Phil Rumbley, Jill Beam, Ron Sheppard, Ed Copeland, Howard Bell, Cheryl Schmidt,

Kara Rickman w/Kennedy, Jon Rickman, Larry Schmidt

The Originals in Mesquite, 2011

James  Streit, Ed Copeland (Honorary), Ron Sheppard, Larry Schmidt,

Howard Bell, Bill Kimple, Les Munson, Art Ratley

4th Army “Jammers” stop traffic in the hotel lobby.  Pictured Bill Kimple, Ed Copeland, Tom Jenkins, two guests, and Mark Munson.

Howard Bell, Jill Rumbley, Cathy Steinhauer, Tim Schatz, Margaret McManus  honor memory of Arnold Schatz





































































































No recorded music available.




Wimberley, Texas, June 24-27, 2012


Hosts:  Tom & Nancy Jenkins


            In the heart of Texas, near Austin and the University of Texas, there is a small town known for its tourist activity, speciality shopping, and other relaxing vacation doings.  This is Wimberley, which was invaded by the musicians associated with the U.S. Fourth Army Reunion.  They assembled for  fraternal fellowship Saturday evening, and entertained with a Jam Session for their own satisfaction and that of their audience. Each morning we were greeted with a homecooked breakfast prepared by Ken Beam, and graciously served by his lovely assistant, Jill Beam.  Sunday morning we were taken on an extensive walking tour of the campus of the Universityof Texas by our host and guide, Tom Jenkins.  We saw the stadium, the infamous Tower, and concluded at the George Bush Presidential Library and Museum.  It was a warm day, and we were all thrilled with the cold drinks for lunch.  Rehearsals were held Monday and Tuesday for the free public concert, an important feature of each reunion.  At the Banquet, pictures were taken of all reunion attendees , and a separate picture of those special members, the Originals.   

                                                                                                                                                        Zelia Bell


The Originals—Wimberly, 2012

Howard Bell, Norman Elliott, Ron Sheppard, Jervis Underwood, Jim Siegeler,

Doug Peterson, Bob Parker, Duncan Hale, Art Ratley

Jim Roumillat was not present for the picture, but played in the concert

The Banquet in Wimberley 2012

Back row:  Norman Elliott, Duncan Hale, Joyce Hale, Ellie Hansen, Ron Sheppard, Jim Siegeler,

Larry Schmidt, Ken Beam, Jill Beam.  Front Row:  Sandra Randolph, Mary Ratley, Helen Sheppard,

Carmen Underwood, Jervis Underwood, Cheryl Schmidt, Zelia Bell, Howard Bell, Rosemary Rumbley,

Jane Peterson, Bob Parker.  Kneeling:  Jon Rickman, Kara /Kennedy Rickman, Doug Peterson, Art Ratley








































































String Ensemble – “Star Spangled Banner”

Concert Band – “Dawson’s Fourth”Anderson, Don Stephens, conductor

                          “God Bless The U.S.A” Jon Rickman, conducting



Kansas  City - Olathe, Kansas, June 21-25, 2013


Hosts:  Dwight and Janmarie Rhodes, Howard and Zelia Bell, George and Beth Rankin,


            Musicians from the Fourth Army Band have pleasant memories from the summer of 2013 thanks to Dwight Rhodes, officer with the Johnson County Community College Campus Police Department.  Rhodes organized the reunion of these special musicians at JCCC, and the result was multiple practices, a public concert and a chance for veterans of the Army band from the 1950s through the 70s to get together and perform together.  During the Korean and Vietnam conflicts, the Army sought top-caliber musicians to play for radio programs and at Army events.  Rhodes is an honorary member of the Fourth Army Reunion Band.  Honorary members are called upon to play in the stead of original members who are unable to attend a reunion or have passed away.  Rhodes has played trumpet since he was a child and considered becoming a professional musician. When he heard the band needed a venue for its 2013 reunion he suggested JCCC.  “Usually, the event is held in Texas, where most of these guys are from,”  he said.  “The 4th Army was based at Ft. Sam Houston in San Antonio, Texas.”  But Kansas City was the site for the first reunion, back in 1988, and also the home of Howard Bell, the original organizer of the band’s annual reunions.  In 1988, the band met at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.  In 2008, when the metro area hosted the 20th anniversary reunion, band members met at the Community Christian Church in Kansas City, Mo.  This time, for the 25th anniversary, it was time for the Kansas side to act as host, Rhodes decided.  He suggested to Larry Dixon, deputy chief, that the JCCC Police sponsor the event, and Dixon and Jerry Wolfskill, associate vice president of public safety, both lent their support. Dan Stinson, police officer, and Don Emerson detective, volunteered to participate in an honor guard to present the flag at the beginning of the concert.

            “Everyone was incredibly helpful,” Rhodes said, singling out  Ron Stinson, professor and chair of the music department, for help with practice rooms, and Tama Kingston, facilities coordinator for the Carlsen Center, for her help with the production in Yardley Hall. 

“Even though band members are now in their 60s, 70s and 80s, they came from all over the U.S. for the reunion.  In some cases, the sons or daughters of original members have become honorary members, and the families continue the tradition of the once-a-year reunion. These were in addition to many honoraries of earlier reunions.  

“These are not only great musicians, these are great people.  Some of them never met when they were in the band, but through the reunions, they’ve become close friends, and they look forward to seeing each other every year.  There’s time to socialize, but band members are still serious about putting together a quality free public concert.  And if the standing ovation the band received at the end of the concert was any indication, the members did just that. The members share a common bond—one of being better than your average musician.  The level of talent in the Fourth Army Band was just incredible, and I was honored to be a part of it.”                                                                                                                   Dwght Rhodes


            A delightful Sunday afternoon excursion to Leavenworth pleased the attendees.  An interesting visit to the Merry-go-round Museum, very appropriately concluded with a ride for all on an antique merry-go-round was a pleasant event for the visitors.  From there we proceeded to the restored train station for a tasty lunch served by the Harvey Girls in their black uniforms with white aprons and caps.  Next was a tour of Fort Leavenworth, high on the banks of the Missouri River, with its beautiful brick homes and barracks.  A stop at the chapel was a sobering moment.  Thank you, George & Beth Rankin, for arranging such a fine tour.

Special guests were the JCCC Police Department color guard and Bob Cochran, former director of bands at Raytown South High School.  Delivering vocal variety to the instrumental program was Karenna Lee of Houston and Jay Crowley of Independenc, Mo.

In addition to original members of the Fourth Army Band, honoraries returned for the comaraderie and music.  Mr. Bell was especially pleased to have four former students of the 1960s from Marshall, Mo. travel to perform with this years band—George Rankin, Lee Bailey, Jane Huff and Alan Criswell.  Also, the auditioned handbell choir Rezound! rang for the banquet, and one of the members is his daughter Romaine (Bell) Diamond.                                                                                                                Zelia Bell


Originals attending in 2013

Howard Bell, Robert Dill, Ron Sheppard, Art Ratley, Larry Schmidt


And the Merry-go-Round at Ft. Leavenworth, KS went round!  Janette Dill w/camera, Jane Copeland, Ellie Hansen, Ron Sheppard and Larry Sage



















































Howard  & Zelia Bell with Lee Bailey, Jane Huff,

Alan Criswell, & George Rankin,  Marshall students

 of the 1960s  join the FAB family,  June 2013



Music recorded by Gary Alvested

All Musicians – “Armed Forces-The Pride of America”

                             Bob Cochran, conductor

String Orchestra – “Farandole”

                               “This Land is Your Land,”

                                Karenna Lee, soloist

Jazz Band – “And All That Jazz” Karenna Lee, soloist

                     “Pennsylvania 6500” arr. Grey

Concert Band – “Polka and Fugue from Schwanda the Bagpiper” Howard Bell, conductor

                          “Beguine for Band” Mike Wiesner, conductor 

Honoring Our Honoraries


The Fourth Army Reunion Band has honored many musicians with the title of Honorary in appreciation of their assistance with various reunions (see Honorary tab).  There are three Honoraries who have recently expressed their appreciation for the musical performance, history and friendship by assuming leadership roles in the future of this organization.  Each has performed regularly with the groups and have taken on additional respnsibilities toward its continuation.  We recognize these three  for their continued interest and contributions:


Patrick Sloan

Orchestra Director

Dwight Rhodes

Reunion Planner


Gary Alvested

Audio Technician














Houston - Spring Branch, Texas, June 2l-25, 2014


Host:  Dwight Rhodes


Attendees assemble in front of the hotel to say “See you next year!”

L to R:Janmarie Rhodes, Howard Bell, Dwight Rhodes, Zelia Bell, Ellie Hansen, Sandy Randolph, George Rankin, Mary Ratley, & Beth Rankin.


























In 2013 Dwight Rhodes began a search of community bands who would work with the FAB and perform a joint concert honoring the Fourth Army Band and its history of fine musical performances.  We received an invitation from the Lone Star Symphonic Band, under the direction of Robert Bryant, welcoming the addition of our musicians, and offered a concert venue at the Houston Community College, Spring Branch Performing Arts Center..  Members of the 4th Army Reunion Band attending were Howard Bell and Art Ratley; Honoraries, Ga;ry Alvested, Zelia Bell, Ed Copeland, Ellie Hansen, Tom Jenkins, Karenna Lee, Claude Perdue, Sandy Randolph, Beth Rankin, George Rankin, Dwight Rhodes, Tim Schatz, Patrick Sloan, Louis Wells, Lewis Wells, Jr., and Mike White.  Jane Copeland, Mary Ratley and Charlotte Perdue were reunion guests.  Patrick Sloan led our string orchestra which was formed by friends and students.

            Attending the FAB Banquet was Rose Anderson of San Antonio, the daughter of an original FAB member Guiseppi Mormena.  She brought pictures and momentos of her father’s service with the band in the late 1940s. and early 1950s (see story below).

            The concert hall presented a lovely setting with fine acoustics for the Tuesday evening concert.  Patrick Sloan conducted the String Ensemble of area musicians, and Tim Schatz was the concertmaster.  A very able concert performance which concluded with a standing audience response to the Star and Stripes Forever performed by the Concert BandAnother delightful experience.                        Zelia Bell




The FAB Family - Art Ratley –U.S. 4th Army Band, 1955-56


            This FAB title has been attached to a group of people that have been getting together for over twenty-five years.  It is difficult to explain how this happened, so I have been wondering just how to tell this story to comeone who would have difficulty understanding why these people would do this.  This is what I have concluded:  Howard and Zelia Bell along with several people planted a tree.  This tree like other trees have a strong trunk and many limbs.  The year was 1988.  The trunk consisted of a group of musicians who had spent some time together in the 1950’s in San Antonio with the United States Fourth Army Band.  With a great deal of watering and care the tree began to grow similar to that of a family tree.  The tree that consisted of the original members with their spouses, began to grow new limbs that added strength and beauty that can best be described in the poem “Trees” by Joycee Kilmer.  In the years following 1988, the tree blossomed with new limbs that carried their own personalities, shapes, and sounds as they fluttered in the breeze.  Many people came from far away places to see and help this amazing tree grow with their contributions to its growth.  New limbs have taken over some of the work of the old original limbs and the tree grew stronger with each passing year.  Some trees are known for their wonderful shade during the hor summer months, some for their homes and nests for birds, and some for their God to give beauty to this earth.  This tree has given many things to many people.  It has been a place to come together for a common cause.  It has given entertainment and satisfying experiences over a long period of time to many people in many different places.  It has been a pleasure to the old limbs to get to know the new limbs that have supported the tree over the years.  This tree is not only a symbol of the companionship of those originals represented in the trunk of the tree, but also to all those people who represent the limbs that grew form the beginning event in Kansas City.  The FAB tree is similar to the family tree in that it brings together prople like brothers and sisters, who have common interests, different talents, and a bond with others that only musicians can understand.  I am thankful and feel very fortunate to have been a part of that FAB group.  Recorded in the FAB book “FAB Memories and Reunions” produced by Howard Bell, members tell their stories of how they came to be members of the band.  Jack Smith, a former member and great trumpet player who I met in college, recommended that when I graduated, I should join that FAB Band.  I took his advice and am forever grateful to Jack. I am also thankful  for the privilege of being associated with such good friends during those years and thankful to Howard and Zelia for all the years of great FAB Reunions.  The limbs of the tree keep growing, and who would have believed that we would meet such people as Dwight Rhodes, George Rankin, Ed Copeland, Gary Alvested, Tom Jenkins, and so many others who have contributed to the continuation of this wonderful event.  Thanks, Mr. Mac, for the influence you have on all of us.  Special thanks to all my friends that I have known since that first day I stepped in the building in February 1955 as a member of the FAB family.  To all those who are no longer with us, I treasure the friendship and good times we experienced together.          Reunion Afterglow 2014
























String Orchestra – “Allegro Grosso”

Jazz Band – “Cute”  Hefti

                     “A Tisket-A-Tasket”  Karenna Lee, soloist

Concert Band – “The Magic Trumpet”  Dwight Rhodes,  soloist



Rose Mormena Anderson Remembers Her Father

Guiseppi Mormena came from Italy about 1912 and joined the Army at Fort Duncan, Eagle Pass, Texas in 1917.  A phenomenal musician who played every instrument, including banjo, he decided digging trenches was not for him.  He was the bugler under Captain Patton while Patton was stationed at Ft. Clark.  Guiseppi never left the state of Texas,  He was told during WWII he was too old to travel, so he did not go to the Philippines where many of his comrades were killed, including Rose’s birth father, Thomas J. Lombardi.  Rose was adopted by the Mormenas following the death of her father.  Guiseppi retired from the 4th Army Band in 1951 and was interred in the Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery upon his death, July 30, 1970.  Rose Anderson shared memories and photos during the 2014 FAB Reunion.


Photo on left:  U. S. 4th Army Band in Quadrangle – 1950

Above: Sgt. Mormeno retires - 1951


















Dallas, Farmer’s Branch, Texas, October 21-24, 2015


Host:  Dwight Rhodes




 The FAB ventured into a change in time of year, and met with the New Horizons Band Dallas, led by Mike Rossi, conductor.  A bright concert poster greeted us in many places in Farmer’s Branch, which gave a warm welcome.  However, the Texas monsoon season had begun, and one vivid memory of that time in Dallas is rain, Rain, RAIN!  As none of us are sweet enough to melt, we forged on and made merry together although some of our expected members were unable to attend.  Those who waded in were Howard & Zelia Bell, Bill Martinez (both men originals), Sandy Randolph, Ellie Hansen, Louis Wells, and Louis Wells, Jr., Patrick Sloan, George & Beth Rankin, Gary Alvested, Lynn and Val Garrison, Claude  and Charlotte Perduc, and our intrepid leader Dwight Rhodes.   Rosemary Rumbley sloshed to the banquet as did several members of the New Horizons Band, and with daughter Jill Beam, newly crowned Mrs Texas Senior American, were at the concert.  As expected, the musicians greeted each other warmly and proceeded to rehearse and perform together.  The rains ceased in time for the Concert and the FAB and New Horizons were greeted by a receptive audience.  A highlight of the program was the String Ensembleconducted by Patrick Sloan with Tim Schatz as concertmaster.  The group was augmented by students from Turner High School and Christy Myers, their

director.  They played “Masterpiece Medley” and “Selections from Star Wars.”  The FAB proudly includes  string music on programs in tribute to long-time FAB original Arnold Schatz amd other fine string musicians who were  members of the 4th Army Band.  The traditional ice cream and cake after the concert was shared with the audience and members of the New Horizons Band.  We left Dallas the next day thoroughly washed with fine music as well as by Mother Nature.




String Orchestra – “Selections from Star Wars”

Concert Band – “Homefront”




Two very patriotic tributes were presented with our meeting with our friends in Dallas: which are included on the next page:  :Lest We Forget, written by Dr. Ronald E. Dawson, 2012 and.Fourth Army Reunion Band, penned by Robert Lee Ball, October 24, 2015.  This acrostic exemplifies the very principles of our organization.  Thank you, Mr. Ball and Mr. Dawson.                    Zelia Bell






San Antonio, Fort Sam Houston, Texas. October 27-30, 2016


Hosts:  Dwight Rhodes, Col.(ret) Billy Steele  & 323rd Army Band


CWO (ret) Louis Wells conducts the 323rd Army Band at FAB Reunion

Quadrangle, Fort Sam Houston - 2016
























            The 2016 Reunion was a Homecoming for the FABers-- originals who served at Fort Sam Houston and spouses and children, who have good memories of the time spent there.  Downtown San Antonio and the Riverwalk were delightful, as was the return to Southwest cuisine.  The originals were represented by Howard Bell, Bill Martinez, Art Ratley, and Larry Schmidt whose wives Zelia Bell, Mary Ratley, Olivia Martinez, and Cheryl Schmidt were also present.  A number of Honoraries were also in attendance: Gary Alvested, Lynn and Val Garrison, Ellie Hansen, wife of FABer (dec.) Erling Hansen, Karenna Lee, Claude and Charlotte Perdue, George and Beth Rankin, Dwight Rhodes, Patrick Sloan, Sandy Randolph (wife of FABer Herman Randolph (dec.),  Col.(ret) Billy Steele, CWO (ret) Louis Wells, Louis Wells, Jr. and first-time Honorary John Dunlap, 5th Army CWO in 1972-3, and wife Pat.  Many of the group visited museums on the Fort and downtown, Brackenridge Park, and viewed the growth of the city.  Sgt. Mike Jones was a cheerful escort and helped with logistics. Our musicians were impressed with the personnel and talent in the present-day 323rd Army Band—a warm welcome to participate and shared experiences bonded members of the FAB and the 323rd.  A lovely warm evening was enjoyed for the Concert under the tower in the Quadrangle, and the peacocks screeched their welcome.  The Concert Band program featured a tribute to the the Fourth Army Band of the 1950s through 1970s and their radio programs, “The Fourth Army Show” and “Concert in Khaki,” as well as music for Halloween—“Dante’s Inferno” and “Excerpts from Phantom of the Opera” with haze and flashing lights.  Honorary Karenna Lee and trumpeters Larry Schmidt and Dwight Rhodes enjoyed their time with the Jazz Ensemble.  Patrick Sloan was delighted with the assistance of several wind players for the String Ensemble--a lovely blend.  The program was relayed world-wide, live, through the 323rd network.  In addition to the current leader of the 323rd band, CWO Jonathan Ward,  the concert also featured guest conductors  Howard Bell, FAB original; CWO (ret.) Wells, 323rd alum and 5th Army CWO; and CWO (ret) John Dunlap, 5th Army, who conducted his  new composition “March for the R.O.F.”  A fine concert for lovers of concert band music.  The evening concluded with shared ice cream and cake to celebrate all the birthdays and anniversaries of the past year.  The FAB presented the Fourth Army Museum an original bass drum head  autographed and dedicated to an early CWO, Homer Tampke, and several pictures of his tenure at Ft. Sam Houston.  .           Zelia Bell                                                                


The Originals 2016

Larry Schmidt, John Dunlap, 5th Army, Howard Bell,

Bill Martinez  & Art Ratley

Tampke Drumhead

Bill Martinez points out autographs to

 wife Olivia & Howard Bell

The Jazz Band, 323rd Personnel + Larry Schmidt & Dwight Rhodes



















































Retired U.S. 4th Army Band Members and Honoraries with the

323rd U.S. Army Band, “Fort Sam’s Own,” CWO Jonathan Ward, Bandmaster


Quadrangle – Fort Sam Houston – San Antonio, Texas – October 30, 2016


323rd U.S. Army Concert Band

“Star Spangled Banner” .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  Key

CWO JonathanWard, Conductor

 “This Is the Army” .  .  .  .  .  .  .   arr.Andy Anderson

Announcer, Louis Wells, Jr., CWO (Ret.)

“American Salute” .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .Gould

Howard Bell, 4th Army Band 1954-55, Conductor

“Circus Bee” .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .Fillmore

Louis Wells, 323rd Band & CWO (Ret.)

5th Army Band, Ft. Sam Houston, Conductor

“March of the Retired Old ‘Folks’” .  .   .  . John Dunlap

John Dunlap, 5th Army Band 1972-73, Conductor


Orchestra Ensemble

Spring & Autumn from “Four Seasons” .  .  . arr. Leidig

                                       “Baroque Suite No. 1”  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .   Mouret

  “Tuxedo Junction” .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . arr. Caponegro.

Patrick Sloan, Director


323rd & 4th Army Stage Band

                                       “A Tisket-A-Tasket” .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . Fitzgerald-Webb

“It Could Happen to You” .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . Baker

Karenna Lee, Vocalist

“In the Mood” .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  Miller

Orchestra Ensemble

Allegro from “Eine Kleine Nachtmusik” .  .  .  .  .Mozart


323rd U.S. Army Concert Band

(with Smoke machine for atmosphere)

“Inferno” .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . Robert W. Smith

“Phantom of the Opera” .  .  .  .  .  .  .  arr.Webber-Barker

“Stars and Stripes Forever” .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  Sousa

CWO Jonathan Ward, Conductor


Concert Band -  “This Is the Army” arr. Anderson, Howard Bell, Conductor,

                                                Louis Wells, Jr., Narator

  “American Salute” Gounod , Howard Bell, conductor

  “Circus Bee”  Louis Wells, conductor

Jazz Band – “It Could Happen to You” Karenna Lee, soloist

String Orchestra – “Eine Kleine Nachtmusik”

Concert Band – “The Stars and Stripes Forever” CWO Jonathan Ward, conductor


Gary Alvested was the audio technician who improved the collected music examples allowing us to enjoy aural performances from the past.