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Armed Forces Day tribute to three of my scouting friends

There are at least three of my scouting friends, all Eagle Scouts, who are currently on active dury, or a called up reserve member. As today is Armed Forces Day I'd like to talk a bit about them.

They all have a connection to my scouting days in Queens Council, and the Order of the Arrow's Suanhacky Lodge #49.

The most senior of the group is Col. Kenneth Fritzsche, who kept his vigil the same evening I did, in May, 1985. However at that time the Lodge had to get him away for the weekend from West Point, where he was cadet at the Military Academy. He had gone on to serve in Desert Storm, was an instructor at West Point for two years and is now involved with the Military's Computer and email service in the Washington D.C. area. At the 2005 National Scout Jamboree Ken was the Advisor to the West Point Eagle Scout group. That is where the photo was taken.

LCDR Gregory Stanclik is the Executive Officer (second in command) of the USCG Cutter Tahoma which is based out of the Portsmoth Naval Shipyard, Maine. He formerly was stationed in the port of Oakland, Calif., and aboard the USGCC Healy, which is the polar research vessel. I got to spend a day with Greg when he was stationed in California as I was in the Central Valley area speaking before two area coin clubs. Greg meet me at the hotel I was staying at and we went up to Sacramento to visit the State Railroad Museum.

Sgt. Henry Joerz is the Supply Sargent of his Army Reserve Unit (320 MP BN), which is a Military Police outfit. In March he was called up to get ready for his second re-deployment to Iraq. In real life he is a science teacher at Grover Cleveland High School in Queens, NY. He recently spent a week in training at Camp McCoy in Tomah, Wis. I took the afternoon off for a drive down there to have dinner with him, (and have a new photo) as I'd not seen him in person for about 15 years! (Yes, he is that tall!).

And I also would like to recognize Ted Janacek, who has already retired after 20 years of service in the US Navy with much of that time spent in the submarine serivce. He now works on the civilian side at Electric Boat Co. in Groton, CT.

Thanks guys for wearing the uniform!