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  The Cape Fear Chapter MOAA : The Cape Fear Chapter Military Officers Association of America (MOAA) News and Events: What's Happening?



by Rich Underwood

For the ninth consecutive year, our chapter has repeated as a 5-Star Colonel Marvin Harris Communications Award winner in the website and electronic newsletter platform categories. We can all pad ourselves on the back for another noteworthy achievement.

05/21/22 13:58/ CFMOAA/ Awards/


by Rich Underwood

Our Chapter continues with its mission of supporting our military community and our ROTC and JROTC programs. I thought the best way to update the members on our activities was to give you a brief summary of the State of the Chapter report which I presented at the March general membership meeting/brunch. If you where at the brunch, please read on you may have missed something. To see the entire report go to the “Documents” section of this website.

I first reflected on the reason we have a Military Officers Association of America. We include all uniformed services in our organization to foster fraternal relations between the various services from which our members are drawn. We do this to influence and protect the benefits and entitlements that we have all earned through our service. The more members we have the more recognition we garner and the louder our voice.

Our mission is to promote the policies and objectives of MOAA. We support the ROTC/JROTC Programs with scholarships and leadership awards programs. We serve our community by supporting local military, patriotic and charitable events. We protect the rights and interests of our active-duty military, retirees, veterans and reserve component personnel of all services and their dependents, and survivors. We do this at the federal and state level.

Our membership at the time of the briefing was 187 members. This makes us the second largest chapter in the state. This should be more considering our location. We are short six people on the Board of Directors and special staff.

Financially we are sound. Our major income sources are our annual golf tournament and donations. Without the generous support of our members and loyal community supporters many things we do would not be possible.

We had fun at our outings (a night at the ballpark), community support (Memorial Day wreath laying) and our annual golf tournament. We also take pleasure in supporting five ROTC and 25 JROTC units. We award medals and scholarships. The next scholarship awards luncheon will be on May 6th at the Mash House Restaurant, please come out and join us. In 2021 we awarded $11,500 in scholarships and will award $12,500 this year.

We also continued with our charitable programs i.e., the Fort Bragg Army Soldier and Family Assistance Center, the USO, the Fisher House, the Red Cross, the Fort Bragg YMCA Food Pantry and the Purple Heart Gala.

We earned a MOAA 5-Star Levels of Excellence Award and two 5-Star Colonel Marvin J. Harris Communications Awards.

After all that we accomplished, I characterized the state of the chapter as STRESSED. We say this because critical leadership positions remain vacant, overall membership is declining, only 50% of members renew membership on time, and attendance at meetings/events is waning.

HOWEVER, together we can fix these problems. The current board is doubling up to cover all the bases until help arrives. The Chapter is financially healthy. Earning MOAA performance awards year after year bespeaks of the hard work being done by the few. We have a solid foundation of excellence to rebuild upon. We ask that you come and help us rebuild,



04/24/22 17:46/ CFMOAA/ Presidents Notes/


by Rich Underwood

It was my pleasure to present the Robert F. DeMeter Chapter Service Award for 2021 to LTC (Ret) Bruce T. Brown at our Awards and Recognition brunch held in the Hodge Room of the Iron Mike Conference Center on the 19th of March 2022. The DeMeter award is the most prestigious award the Chapter can bestow upon one of its members. The award consists of a rotating trophy which the recipient retains for a year, and a certificate.

The citation reads as follows: “For sustained distinguished service to the Cape Fear Chapter from January 2013 to December 2021. Bruce has distinguished himself through his steadfast support of the Cape Fear Chapter’s mission since joining the Chapter. He has been a loyal and consistent active participant in chapter meetings, projects, and events, always offering to help in any way he can. He is one of the chapter’s most prolific financial contributors. Whatever the chapter has asked of him, Bruce has delivered without equivocation or anticipation of reward. Bruce’s contributions of his time, talents and treasure over a period of years are extraordinary and certainly worthy of the Robert F. DeMeter Chapter Service Award.”

Congratulations Bruce, you have earned our eternal gratitude for your dedicated service and unselfish contributions to the chapter.

See list of all previous DeMeter award recipients at download bar above.

03/21/22 11:53/ CFMOAA/ Awards/


Rich Underwood

by Rich Underwood

I would like to wish every member of the Cape Fear Chapter a Merry Christmas and a Prosperous New Year. We have much to be thankful for and much to look forward to. We have accomplished so much and look to do so much more. Our chapter has advocated for our active-duty military, retirees, veterans, and military families for the past 60 years and our plan is to continue this mission.

We still need volunteers to fill vacant positions on our board of directors. I am recruiting as hard as I can, and on that note, I would like to welcome our new Chaplain Greg Williamson and his wife Jackie. We owe a great debt of gratitude to our outgoing Chaplain Tim Atkinson and his wife Peggy for their outstanding service to our chapter for so many years. I hope soon to announce other changes on our executive board.

This year we resumed our annual golf tournament and not only had a wonderful time playing golf, but also raised $29,000 for scholarships and charitable donations. We awarded $11,500 in scholarships to outstanding ROTC cadets from schools we support. Moreover, as we do every year, we donated to causes that support our soldiers and their families in the Fort Bragg area, such as the Fort Bragg Fisher House, the Food Pantry of the Fort Bragg YMCA, the Fort Bragg Soldier and Family Assistance Center, the USO, and the Red Cross. This year we supported these entities with an aggregate of $5,500 in donations.

Our next bi-monthly general membership meeting will be on 22 January 2022 at McKellar’s Lodge. I look forward to seeing all of you at McKellar’s for lunch. Until then have a joyous, healthy, and safe holiday season.



12/17/21 11:10/ CFMOAA/ Presidents Notes/


2022 Campaign

The Membership Renewal Campaign for 2022 kicked off in November 2021 with the goal of achieving 100% renewals by 31 January 2022. Sad to report that as of 1 May 2022, only 99 members (54%) had renewed. Surely, we can do better than this!

We are now asking those who have not yet renewed to do so without further delay. The quickest and easiest way of doing so is online using a charge card. The other option is to remit by USPS mail by check payable to “CFC MOAA” and mail to “CFC MOAA, P.O. Box 53621, Fayetteville, NC 28305."

There are still several chapter members who have not renewed for 2021. If you fall in this category, please bring your account up to date by remitting for both 2021/2022; call Acting Secretary Ira Watkins (910) 308-7702 if not certain.

06/03/22 16:54/ CFMOAA/ General Info/


Rich Underwood

by Rich Underwood

The fall season thus far has been a busy and productive one for our chapter. The highlights include a successful fund raiser, national recognition, and participation in local events.

The annual fundraising golf tournament was a first-class affair and provided the impetus for the membership to rally behind a common purpose. As a result, we raised $29,000 to support the chapter’s scholarship awards program and other charitable endeavors for the coming year, a blessed outcome.

I would like to thank all our commercial sponsors for their generous support especially Anfinsen Plastics Molding and Assembly, Inc. our major tournament sponsor. While only 40% of our members participated in one form or another, their contributions were likewise significant and appreciated. A complete list of contributors is contained in the tournament wrap-up post below.

We owe our Golf Tournament Committee chaired by Juan Chavez, our Tournament Director Tammy Beshlin, and all committee volunteers a great debt of gratitude for their dedicated efforts that guaranteed success. Special kudos to the Meinhardt family for their unwavering support and their generous donation of gift bags for all our active-duty soldier guest players and several more given away as prices to lucky winners.

While we planned for 50-60 active-duty soldiers to play in the tournament, the untimely troop deployments to Afghanistan in support of the NEO evacuation made this a daunting challenge. Nevertheless, through last-minute scrambling and extensive networking, we were fortunate to welcome 46 active-duty soldiers on tournament day. All of them had a grand time and were most appreciative.

The 20th anniversary of 9-11 coincided with our annual golf tournament this year. I was privileged to place a memorial wreath on the Global War on Terror Monument at Freedom Memorial Park early that morning to honor the heroes and victims of the 9-11 attack and all those brave military men and women who have made the supreme sacrifice in combating terrorists worldwide since. That afternoon, we kicked off the golf tournament with the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag and a prayer in remembrance of all who perished on that infamous day. Given the circumstances; it was a very memorable day.

Later this month I will head to MOAA national headquarters in Arlington, Virginia to attend MOAA’s annual meeting and accept another MOAA 5-Star Levels of Excellence Award. This award recognizes the chapter’s outstanding performance in 2020. Thank you, Ira Watkins, may I do as well during my term.

The Veterans Day Parade this year will be held on 6 November in downtown Fayetteville, and we will participate in this event honoring our veterans. A week later on the 13th of November is our annual meeting of the membership at the Iron Mike Conference and Catering Center. Mark your calendars for both events and make an honest effort to attend both.

In closing, I want to appeal to you once again to step up and volunteer to fill the key leadership positions that remain vacant. Some of our board members have devoted years of service in their positions and doubling in others to keep the chapter viable. They are suffering from extreme burnout and deserve a break. Please do your part and volunteer, you will not regret it -- I promise!



10/03/21 15:09/ CFMOAA/ Presidents Notes/


Tournament Director Tammy Beshlin

by Tammy Beshlin

This year’s golf tournament played at Gates Four Golf and Country Club on 11 September was a resounding success. Our heartfelt thanks to all our commercial sponsors for their continued loyalty and support, to the players and active-duty soldiers who made the day special, and to our chapter members for a commendable outpouring of support.

The following is a list of all sponsors and donors; those indicated by an asterisk (*) contributed in multiple ways.

Prime Sponsor

Mr. Steve LaHam, President & CEO

Anfinsen Plastic Molding & Assembly

Major Material Sponsors

Healy Wholesale Company, Inc.*

Meinhardt Family*

Rogers & Breece, Inc.*


Hole Sponsors

A+ Home Health Care Services*

AAFMAA Wealth Management Trust*

All American Associates Family Medicine*

Chap (LTC)(Ret) & Mrs.Timothy Atkinson*

COL (Ret) & Mrs. David L. Baggett

COL (Ret) & Mrs. Eli Ballard*

COL (Ret) & Mrs. William H. Bell, II*

LTC (Ret) & Mrs. David Beshlin*

Blue Ridge Power*

Bob Maier’s Automotive Services*

MAJ (Ret) George Bond*

Brown & Associates Investment Services*

Buie, Norman & Company, P.A.

Cape Fear Eye Associates, P.A.

Cape Fear Cardiology*

Caroline Specialties International

Catlett Family Dentistry

Mrs. Zobeida Carrion

Caviness & Cates Building Development*

COL (Ret) & Mrs. Juan I. Chavez*

LTC (Ret) & Mrs. David C. Cheney*

LTC (Ret) James E. Chrishon, Jr.

MAJ (Ret) Gerald Croll*

Cruz Masters, LLC*

COL (Ret) & Mrs. Tad D. Davis*

District House of Taps*

COL & Mrs. Stanley D. Dodson*

LTC (Ret) & Mrs. Thomas Donnelly

COL & Mrs. John P. Dunigan*

LTC (Ret) & Mrs. Clark Ecklund*

Elevate Real Estate

Fort Bragg Federal Credit Union

COL (Ret) & Mrs. Ronnie Foxx

Foust Heating and Air Conditioning

LTC (Ret) Dennis Franken*

LTC (Ret) & Mrs. Robert T. Garman*

LTC (Ret) & Mrs. George W. Glann*

LTC (Ret) & Mrs. John W. Hazlett*

Mrs. Dorothy Hinrichs

David & Sandi Hubbard*

Hubbard Kitchen & Bath *

Mrs. Pat Isaacson

Jernigan-Warren, Inc.*

Jimmy John’s Gourmet Sandwiches*

Kalli Ziegler Properties

Lafayette Ford-Lincoln

Mash House Brew Company

Mr. & Mrs. Arthur W. Maxwell, Jr.

John & Mary Beth Parker/McDonald’s*

GEN (Ret) & Mrs. Dan K. McNeill

Carl Meinhardt*

Erika Meinhardt*

Metz Glass*

LTC (Ret) & Mrs. Hans Meinhardt*

Morty Pride Meats

BG (Ret) Joseph L. Nagel*

COL (Ret) & Mrs. Chester G. Oehme, Jr.

LTC (Ret) Charles Pimble*

Powers-Swain Chevrolet, Inc.

Public Storage of Fayetteville, Inc.

QwikMed Pharmacy & Clinic*

Mrs. Barbara Raizen

Rhudy’s, Inc.

COL (Ret) & Mrs. Arturo Rodriguez*

SANCO Construction Company, Inc.*

Savvy Cleaning Company

Dr. & Mrs. Richard H. Shereff, MD*

Strickland’s Portion Pak, Inc.

Sullivans Highland Funeral Home

Superior Bakery

LTC (Ret) & Mrs. John D. Szoka

Ric & Ingrid Thompson

COL (Ret) & Mrs. Richard A. Underwood*

Village Family Dental*

Mrs. Sarah Volkmann*

Mr. & Mrs. Joseph J. Vonnegut

CPT (Ret) & Mrs. David S. Vroom*

Tom & Claudie Wallen*

Watson Family Dentistry

LTC (Ret) & Mrs. Jim Wilde*

LTC (Ret) & Mrs. Martin C. Williams*

Chap (COL)(Ret) & Mrs. Gregory K. Williamson

Soldier Sponsors

Arrow Exterminators of Fayetteville

Mrs. Maria Cory

LtCol (Ret) & Mrs. Dan Dederick

Mrs. Mary Eidman*

COL (Ret) & Mrs. Ronald Elrod

MAJ (Ret) & Mrs. Hubert L. Gibson

Hinkamp Jewelers

Mrs. Lois Ives

CW4 (Ret) & Mrs. Joseph A. Jasienowski

MAJ (Ret) Kenneth L. Krahl

Erika Meinhardt & John Parks Families*

Mrs. Dorothy Miller

Simon Funeral Home

Christine A. Spring

COL (Ret) & Mrs. Deogracia Quiñones

Mrs. Pat Stang

MAJ (Ret) & Mrs. Robert S. Tiffany, III*

Mr. Pete Tilton*

LTC (Ret) John R. (Bob) White

Bill & Connie Wink

COL (Ret) & Mrs. Willie Wright

Cash Donors

Mr. Robert Breece, Jr.*

Mrs. Lise Meinhardt*

LTC (Ret) & Mrs. Thomas Delahunty

Mrs. Carol Ivey

LTC (Ret) Peter Leone

MAJ (Ret) Warren R. O’Brien

Prize & Giveaways Donors

Anderson Creek Golf & Country Club

Carolina Lakes Golf Club

Chris’ Steak House

Fresh Market

Gates Four Golf & Country Club

High Forest Releaf

Kings Grant Golf Course

LeClair’s General Store

Meinhardt Family

Ryder Golf Course

Stryker Golf Course

316 Oyster Bar & Grill

10/03/21 14:35/ CFMOAA/ General Info/


2020 MOAA Levels of Excellence Awards

The streak continues. For the seventh year in a row, the Cape Fear Chapter was awarded a MOAA 5-Star Levels of Excellence Award for the year 2020. The lion’s share of the credit goes to past Chapter President Ira Watkins who displayed exemplary leadership in keeping the chapter together and functioning during one of the most tumultuous years in our history. Thanks Ira, for your leadership, tenacity and unwavering dedication.

Our current Chapter President Rich Underwood will pin the 5-Star medallion on the Chapter colors awards streamer at our annual meeting on 13 November 2021.

Congratulations to all!

10/03/21 14:31/ CFMOAA/ Awards/


by Rich Underwood

I thank everyone who attended the baseball game outing at Segra Stadium on the 24th of July. The feedback I received was that all had a good time and enjoyed the food, camaraderie, and the ball game. Unfortunately the home team lost, but the food was excellent, the beer was cold, and the company was great! This time we were in the shade with ceiling fans circulating a delightful cool breeze. The best news was the turnout. We had forty attendees, the exact number we needed.

It’s that time of year when we shift gears and start focusing on our fundraising golf tournament. We will hold the tournament at Gates Four Golf Course on 11 September 2021. If you have never sponsored a young warrior and experienced the feeling of satisfaction that you have done something good, then you need to sponsor a soldier, airman or sailor for a round of golf -- better yet sponsor a hole as well! We need everyone's support to make this year's fundraiser a success.

Our November annual membership meeting will be held at the Fort Bragg Iron Mike Conference and Catering Center on 13 November 2021. The Fort Bragg commander has opened IMCC again for events and we are truly thankful. We may have to deal with some COVID protocols, but it will be a joyful relief to meet in fellowship again. Keep tuned for more information as we get closer to the event.

Once again, I enjoin all who have not yet renewed their membership for 2021 to do so without delay. Keeping our membership numbers up is extremely important to ensure success in our purpose. Numbers matter to state and federal legislators as they consider legislation that effects our active military, military retirees, and veterans overall. MOAA is our voice for military advocacy, entitlements, and benefits. The bigger the numbers, the stronger the voice.

Finally, our chapter needs dedicated members to fill key positions on the board of directors. We are in dire need of volunteers to help in the everyday workings of our chapter. We need a Secretary, a Programs Committee Chair, a Surviving Spouse Liaison, a Personal Affairs Officer, a Legislative Committee Chair, a Newsletter Editor, and a Webmaster. Our current board members are doubling up to cover all these duties and they need some relief.

We also need a volunteer to take over the running of our annual golf tournament. This is the premier event for the Chapter. This is the enabler that allows us to support our scholarships awards program and all the charitable programs that support our active military and veterans in our community. Please contact me or any of the board members if you want to help carry on the mission of our great chapter.



08/26/21 19:34/ CFMOAA/ Presidents Notes/


Rich Underwood

by Rich Underwood

I want to thank all who attended our annual ROTC scholarship awards luncheon on the 7th of May. It was uplifting to see many of our members again after more than a year of not being able to meet in person. PA system problems aside, everyone seemed to have a good time enjoying the camaraderie and the freedom of being out among people once again.

It was also gratifying to witness the awarding of scholarships to some of our most promising young men and women as they continue their journey to earn a college degree and an officer’s commission in one of our military services. It is most reassuring to know that the future of our Officers Corps looks very bright indeed.

In commemorating our 60th anniversary as a MOAA affiliate, Lt Gen (Ret) Atkins’ congratulatory note (quoted in post below), highlighted our ROTC scholarship program and our resolve to continue our mission during a turbulent time in our history. With this year’s scholarships, we have awarded a total of $169,000 in scholarships since our program’s inception in 1998, a record we can all be justifiably proud.

As the General alluded, we have not stopped serving during rough times, but we need every member to keep the faith and assist us in our task. We are blessed with a new treasurer, Jerry Croll, but we still need help. We have several key positions on our executive board that must be filled. Please give me a call if you feel inclined to serve.

With Memorial Day just a week away, let us remember and honor our fallen comrades who made the ultimate sacrifice. I encourage you to attend the Memorial Day ceremony held at the Freedom Memorial Park in Fayetteville at 10:00 AM on Monday, May 31, 2021; our chapter has the honor of laying a wreath at the park’s Global War on Terrorism Monument.

Finally, with the start of the summer vacation season, coupled with the lifting of some pandemic health restrictions, I wish all of you a wonderful, safe, and healthy summer! Safe travels to all!



05/25/21 12:21/ CFMOAA/ Presidents Notes/


by Rich Underwood

Our chapter was founded on the 22nd of March 1961 at Fort Bragg and became the first affiliate of The Retired Officers Association (TROA) in North Carolina. On January 1, 2003, the National organization changed its name from The Retired Officers Association (TROA) to the Military Officers Association of America (MOAA).

To commemorate the anniversary, the chapter received a handsome certificate (at download bar at right) from National MOAA accompanied by a personal note from Lt Gen Dana T. Atkins, USAF (Ret) President and CEO. The note reads as follows:

“Dear Colonel Underwood,

Congratulations on achieving 60 years as a MOAA affiliate. During some very challenging times presented by the COVID pandemic, your chapter has adapted to keep the MOAA mission thriving in your community.

Specifically, I truly appreciate your focus on the chapter’s ROTC scholarship program. Your efforts go to the very heart of supporting our men and women in uniform and will inevitably attract a valued membership base to your chapter and our national organization.

Thank you for continuing the commitment to “Never Stop Serving.”


Lt Gen Dana T. Atkins, USAF (Ret)

President and CEO”

We belatedly observed our anniversary during the May 7, 2021 luncheon at the Mash House Restaurant being the first opportunity to meet in person this year.

It is my fervent hope that our chapter will continue doing great work in support of our military, our veterans, and our future military leaders for many more years to come.

05/07/21 21:12/ CFMOAA/ General Info/


by Rich Underwood

MOAA National announced the 2020 Colonel Marvin Harris Communications Award winners, and I am proud to announce that the Cape Fear Chapter maintained its string of now eight consecutive years as a dual 5-Star winner intact.

Congratulations to us for repeating as MOAA communications award winner in the website and eNewsletter platform categories.

All of us may add another feather to our caps!

05/06/21 20:39/ CFMOAA/ Awards/


Rich (L) presents certificate to Ira (R)
Secondary Image
Marty passes trophy to Ira

by Rich Underwood

It was my privilege to present the 2020 Robert F. DeMeter Chapter Service Award to Ira Watkins at our May 4, 2021 Board of Directors meeting held at the Iron Mike Conference Center. Plans were to present the award to Ira at the May 7 luncheon, however, Ira was unable to attend because of personal reasons.

Holding to tradition, last year’s recipient of the award, Marty Williams, passed the rotating DeMeter Trophy to Ira who will retain it for one year. The DeMeter award is the most prestigious award the Chapter can bestow upon one of its members.

The citation on the award certificate reads as follows: “For outstanding service as President Cape Fear Chapter from January 2019 to December 2020. Ira Watkins displayed superb leadership and resolute dedication to his Chapter and the Military Officers Association of America earning a MOAA 5-star Level of Excellence Award and two 5-star communications awards for 2019. All during 2020, Ira was forced to preside virtually, via ZOOM, because of the Corona virus pandemic. He showed noteworthy sensitivity and compassion in interacting with chapter members who struggled with isolation and other related issues, especially with those who lost loved ones to the virus. His leadership over a 2-year period that included the tumultuous 2020 pandemic was extraordinary and clearly worthy of this coveted award.”

Congratulations Ira, you have the eternal gratitude of all our members for your dedicated service and unselfish contributions to the chapter. You are an inspiration to all of us.

05/06/21 16:33/ CFMOAA/ General Info/


Vacancies hurting our chapter!

There is a dire need for volunteers to step up and fill some of the vacant positions on the chapter’s Executive Board. Some of these positions have been vacant for over 2 years, and some have been filled by the same person for as long as 8 years and new blood is needed.

While all the positions are important (they would not exist otherwise) some are more critical than others. The following positions need to be filled post haste:

Secretary – Currently, the most critical vacancy; vacant since 1 January 2021.

2nd Vice President (Programs) – Another critical job; vacant since 1 January 2021 as well.

Surviving Spouse Liaison – A must-have position, a spoke person and advocate for our 30 or so surviving spouses. The position has been vacant for 2 years, but the duties have been performed by Ira Watkins as an additional duty.

Personal Affairs Officer – Another must-have position to advise and assist our members regarding benefits, entitlements, and survivor’s assistance. Position has been vacant for 2 years, but currently filled by Chaplain Atkinson as an additional duty.

Transition Liaison Officer – This position has the potential to be a great recruiting tool for the chapter. Active duty officers transitioning to civilian life can be attracted to a chapter that offers an effective transition program. This position has been vacant for over 2 years and is being filled by George Bond as an additional duty.

Newsletter Editor – An organization must be able to communicate with its members to be successful. A newsletter is one of the most important and effective tools to stay in touch. Don Gersh was the Editor for more than 6 years until he had to lay down his quill because of health reasons. The last issue of the Infogram was published in January 2021.

Webmaster – In this technological age, a website is a most important medium of communication. Juan Chavez has been our webmaster for more than 8 years and suffering from “burnout”. We need a younger, computer savvy type to take over and exploit the website’s potential to a new level.

Any of the above positions can be filled by a regular member or a spouse thereof, or a surviving spouse. Most of the work can be performed from home via telephone and computer. The Executive Board meets physically at the Fort Bragg Iron Mike Conference Center on the first Tuesday of each month, and meetings normally last approximately 2 hours.

The continued shortage of officers to lead the chapter forward constitutes an existential threat to the chapter. We simply cannot continue to keep the chapter afloat like this. We need an infusion of new blood, new ideas and new energy.

As we observe the 60th anniversary of the chapter’s founding, the first affiliate in the state, we should keep in mind all those who came before us and who worked so hard to make the chapter what it is. It is our collective responsibility to keep the organization viable for future generations of military officers.

04/08/21 14:52/ CFMOAA/ General Info/


President Underwood administers oath of office to Jerry Croll (right)

Major (Ret) Gerald "Jerry" Croll

Our prayers for a chapter treasurer were answered, Jerry Croll answered the call and no one was more relieved than President Rich Underwood. Jerry will fill the large void created with the unexpected death of Ralph Hinrichs on 23 February 2021.

President Rich Underwood officially installed Jerry at the monthly Board of Directors meeting on 6 April 2021 by administering the oath of office in the presence of the Board of Directors.

We all owe a great debt of gratitude to Jerry for stepping up to the plate. We wish him the best of success in a position of paramount importance to our organization.

04/07/21 18:42/ CFMOAA/ General Info/


Rich Underwood

by Rich Underwood

I would first like to update you on the status of the Board of Directors. In reality, the board has not changed much because most of us remained in the same positions, and regretfully we have been unable to persuade anyone to volunteer to serve.

For those who do not remember me, I was the 2nd Vice President for Programs, the guy who passed out the name tags as you entered an event. We are looking to fill that position plus the following: Secretary, Treasurer, Surviving Spouse Liaison, Newsletter Editor and Personal Affairs Officer. If you are interested in serving in one of these positions, please contact me or any board member. These positions are critical to the operation of our organization. The current members are doubling up to perform the duties of the vacant positions and we need some relief, so I urge you to step up to the plate.

On a sadder note, we lost a great friend and member. I reported to you the tragic loss of Ralph Hinrichs on February 23, 2021, the serving Treasurer of our chapter. Ralph also served as a volunteer for the Fort Bragg USO, the Highland Chapter of the Red Cross, the Cumberland County Veterans Council, the Boy Scouts of America, and his church. He truly never stopped serving. His sudden loss to COVID-19 left a huge void in our community. He will always be remembered by all who knew him and served with him, he will be dearly missed. Please remember his wife Dorothy and the family in your prayers as they mourn their loss.

The Chapter received a certificate from MOAA National marking the 60th Anniversary of the Cape Fear Chapter as an affiliate of the Military Officers Association of America and celebrating their mission of service. The certificate will be on display at our next meeting on 7 May. If you would like to learn more about the founding history of our chapter there is an excellent run down in the history section of this website (click on bar below). I want to thank Juan Chavez for putting this together to commemorate our 60th anniversary. Remarkably interesting; I was amazed at those who served our chapter over the years. Well worth the read.

We plan on meeting in person at the Mash House restaurant on 7 May for our traditional annual ROTC Scholarship Awards luncheon. NC State Senator Kirk deViere kindly accepted our invitation to be our featured speaker and assist in the presentation of scholarships.

Marty Williams, our 3rd Vice President for ROTC Affairs, has been busy seeing to it that our ROTC cadets at the senior and junior levels are recognized for their efforts to achieve their goal of becoming an officer in one of our nation’s armed forces. This year we will recognize seven scholarship recipients, four senior ROTC and three junior ROTC cadets. The senior cadets are one each from Campbell University, Methodist University, Fayetteville State University and UNC-Pembroke. The junior ROTC winners are from Overhills High School, Terry Sanford High School and Clinton High School.

Because we were unable to meet in March for the annual awards and recognition event, we shall also be presenting the Robert F. DeMeter Chapter Service Award to a most deserving member. As you know, this is the most prestigious award the chapter bestows on one of its own each year. Come and congratulate our 2020 recipient.

I urge you to come out and enjoy some good food, good fellowship, and a good time getting some wonderful young people off to a good start on their quest to serve our country. We’ll also be celebrating our DeMeter Award recipient and our chapter’s 60th birthday! Lots to look forward to. Hope to see many of you on the 7th of May.

On a closing note, the Senate of the United States of America has passed Senate Resolution 110 designating April 5, 2021 as “Gold Star Wives Day.” Gold Star Wives of America, Inc. was established with the help of first lady Eleanor Roosevelt in 1945 to assist the families left behind by the fallen members of the Armed Forces of the United States. This day is set aside to honor the contributions and dedication of the members of the Gold Wives of America.



P.S. A reminder to send in your membership renewals if you haven’t done so already.

03/23/21 18:46/ CFMOAA/ Presidents Notes/