Norm's Notes for November 2019
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■Hello Everybody! This is your Club Insider Publisher and Tribal Leader Since 1993 checking in with our 311th Edition!
■I'm very, very SAD to have to report to you all that one of the greatest people I've ever known in my 43 years in the club business, DR. GERRY FAUST, suddenly passed away on November 1, 2019 from a heart attack while elk hunting in Wyoming. Gerry was one of a kind, and many of us owe him a great deal of THANKS and APPRECIATION for the great job he did facilitating our Faust Roundtable #1 Meetings over many years. The Roundtable #1 Meetings were gatherings of some of America's top club owner/operators/industry leaders, such as: RICK CARO, RED LERILLE, CURT and JANE BEUSMAN, CECIL SPEARMAN, BILL McBRIDE, TOM LYNEIS, JILL KINNEY, TIM and LIZ RHODE, CAROL NALEVANKO, MARK and DEBBIE EISENZIMMER and yours truly, just to name just a few of those who were part of his four different Faust Roundtable Group productions. Others like JOHN McCARTHY, JOE MOORE and WILL PHILLIPS know of his key industry contributions. This month, Club Insider's Cover Story was produced in less than 48 hours after I received the very sad notice of Gerry's passing from our good friend, RICK CARO. So, please take the time to read the comments from these industry giants about another GIANT in our INDUSTRY, DR. GERRY FAUST. Check out this amazing Cover Story starting on Page #3. MAY GERRY REST IN PEACE.
■Is America a GREAT COUNTRY, or what? Hmm... hmm... hmm! Folks, Veterans Day was Monday, November 11th. I hope that, on November 11th, you stopped to think of our troops, airmen and sailors around the world as they're out there to protect our freedom here in these United States of America. If you're a regular reader of Club Insider, you probably see the statement above coming from my keyboard every month. Along the way, you may have wondered: WHY in the world does Norm love America so much? Folks, I'm such a raving and dedicated PATRIOT and I LOVE AMERICA SO MUCH BECAUSE I AM VERY BLESSED TO EVEN BE HERE! Well, since we celebrated Veterans Day this month, and I'm a Veteran, let me tell you about just ONE of the many reasons about why I LOVE AMERICA!
My Dad, the late Norman L. Cates, Sr., was born in a town called Linden in East Texas. At age 17, he dropped out of high school to join the Army. He did that because of the economic conditions in the area his family lived in didn't provide much promise for the future. So, in 1934, Dad signed up, and believe it or not, in the very beginning, he became an Army Cavalry Horseback Soldier! After a few years, the Army horseback troops were merged with the early version of the U.S. Army Air Corps to become what was then called the Army Air Force Corps. Dad stayed in the U.S. Army Air Forces until it became a big part of our military, and he wanted to be part of that. While in the Air Force, he served during World War II as a top gunner on what was called "The Flying Fortress" a/k/a the B-17 Bomber. During his time on the B-17 in New Guinea (an island off the North coast of Australia), my Dad was also named to be the 1st Sergeant for his Squadron. A strange thing happened in his life then... something that today is responsible for the fact that these fingers are typing this for you.
My Dad's Squadron Commander noticed that because Dad did two jobs: (1) being a top gunner on a B-17 Bomber, and (2) being his Squadron's 1st Sergeant, Dad didn't have a day off for months. Being notified of this, my Dad's Squadron Commander asked Dad when was the last time he had any time off. Dad answered it had been many months. Hearing that, Dad's Squadron Commander told him that he wanted him to take some time off. So, Dad got on a plane and flew to Australia for a few days of R&R. During my Dad's furlough (as time off for the troops was called back in those days), they put in a substitute top gunner on the plane my Dad was scheduled to be on before he went to Australia on leave. Sadly, for those on board, the B-17 Bomber my Dad usually flew on, was shot down, and all the souls on board were killed. When Dad returned from his leave in Australia, he was devastated when others informed him that his crew had been shot down and all on board were killed.
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