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2017 Reunion/Convention Info

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2017
THE DISTINGUISHED FLYING CROSS SOCIETY
NATIONAL CONVENTION
DALLAS, TEXAS
SEPTEMBER 24-28, 2017

The Distinguished Flying Cross Society is privileged to have as its convention theme; “Heroic Women of the DFC”. Vice President Charles Curtis awarded Amelia Earhart, for her solo nonstop flight across the Atlantic, the first Distinguished Flying Cross ever presented to a woman. That would be followed by only two more DFC’s, known to be awarded to women, during the entire period of WWII. By 1993, U.S. Defense Secretary Les Aspin ordered the chiefs of the military to drop the prohibition on women flying in combat missions but it wouldn’t be until 1995; that Martha McSally became the first woman to officially fly in a combat role in Iraq. Since then, our Society is privileged to have in its ranks nine living female recipients of the Distinguished Flying Cross. We will be rendering special honors to each of these deserving women during our Gala for their “heroism or extraordinary achievements while participating in an aerial flight”. Tributes to our WWII and Korean War recipients, not previously honored, will also be made.

Dallas Marriott

The convention will be held at the Dallas Marriott Suites Medical/Market Center which is located at 2493 North Stemmons Freeway Dallas, TX 75207. The room rate is $129 per night plus tax. The room rate will be honored 3 days before and 3 days after the reunion dates based on availability, for anyone who would like to extend their stay. The hotel offers parking at $10 per day. There is a complimentary airport shuttle from Love Field only.

ITINERARY

Sunday September 24th
2:00pm ~ Registration Opens
2:00pm-Midnight ~ Hospitality Room Bar Open
8:00pm – 9:00pm ~ BOD Meeting
Monday September 25th
9:00am – Midnight ~ Silent Auction set up in Hospitality Suite
9:00am-1:00pm – Optional Tour ~ George W, Bush Library and Museum
2:00pm-3:00pm ~ Membership Meeting
4:00pm-10:00pm ~ Frontiers of Flight Museum & Dinner
10:00pm-Midnight ~ Hospitality Room Open
Tuesday September 26th
8:00am-4:00pm ~ Optional Tour ~ Lockheed Martin/Fort Worth
6:00pm-10:00pm ~ Dinner & Silent Auction
7:00pm ~ Silent Auction Closes
10:00pm-Midnight ~ Hospitality Room Bar Open
Wednesday September 27th
8:00am-12:00pm ~ Optional Tour ~ Bell Helicopter
2:00pm 5:00pm ~ Hospitality Room Bar Open
                                                                            6:00pm-11:00pm ~ Banquet Gala
                                                                          Thursday September 28th Checkout

Hotel Room Reservation Cut Off Date
Call the Dallas Marriott at 888-843-1165 no later than August 24, 2017 to make your room reservations. Be sure to mention you are with the Distinguished Flying Cross Society to receive the reduced group rate. After August 24th the group rate will not be available.

Convention Highlights
Optional Tour ~ Monday September 25th ~ 9:00am-1:00pm ~ Bush Library ~ Cost $34

                         Bush Library
Located on the campus of Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum serves as a resource for the study of the life and career of George W. Bush, while also promoting a better understanding of the Presidency, American history, and important issues of public policy. Housed inside the Bush Center, the Library features a 20-foot-tall, 360-degree high-definition video wall; a full-size replica of the White House Oval Office; and the original White House Situation Room, now the setting for a unique, interactive educational experience for students. Among the 43,000 artifacts held at the Library, the “Nation Under Attack” exhibit displays steel from the World Trade Center that visitors may touch, the bullhorn President Bush used to address the crowd at Ground Zero, and letters he received in the days following the attacks. Almost 70 million pages of textual materials, more than 1,200 cubic feet of audiovisual materials, just over 3.8 million photographs, 227 cubic feet of photo negatives, approximately 80 terabytes of electronic records, and about 200 million email messages are also housed at the Library.

Monday September 25th ~ 4:00pm-10:00pm ~ Dinner at Frontiers of Flight ~ Included in Registration Price

banquetFlight Museum

The opening dinner will be held at the Dallas Frontiers of Flight Museum and will herald as our featured speaker. Lori represents the current generation of air warriors and saw significant combat service as an OH-58D Kiowa pilot during Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2006. In addition to OIF, during her 20 years of service Lori served across the globe including tours in Germany, Desert Shield/Storm, Kosovo, Korea and various US bases. Lori is currently the Vice President of the PTO in an elementary school in New Kent, VA, mother of two boys, and pursuing her Masters Degree. Her awards include the Distinguished Flying Cross (pinned on by Vice President Richard Cheney), Purple Heart, Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal, Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Combat Action Badge, Senior Army Aviator Wings, and Air Assault Badge. She has also received the Mary Cochran Corbin (Captain Molly) award from the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR). We look forward to seeing you at this magnificent venue and hearing the experiences that Lori will share. There will be time to explore the museum exhibits.

Lori D. Hill

LORI D. HILL

Optional Tour ~ Tuesday September 26th ~ 8:00am-4:00pm ~Lockheed Martin & Fort Worth ~

Lockheed Martin Lockheed Martin 2

Cost $32 The Lockheed Martin Tour is limited to the first 80 people to sign up! Sign up early to secure your spot on the tour. Wheelchairs are allowed but please let us know in advance so we can make the appropriate arrangements. Flat sole – closed toe shoes are required. There will be approximately ½ mile of walking. The rest of the tour will have transportation supplied. No weapons of any kind are allowed. There is a place on the registration form to fill out the information needed for the security screening. You must be a US Citizen with no criminal record and provide the information requested on the registration form. We will receive an exclusive briefing and tour of the mile long state-of-the-art manufacturing facility that is producing the only 5th Generation Stealth Fighter in the World, the F-35 Lightning II. The Lightning II is a single-seat, single-engine fighter aircraft designed for many missions with advanced, integrated sensors built into every aircraft. Missions that were traditionally performed by small numbers of specialized aircraft, such as intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance and electronic attack missions can now be executed by a squadron of F-35s, bringing new capabilities to many allied forces. The F-35 is developed, produced, and supported by an international team of leading aerospace companies. As the prime contractor, Lockheed Martin continues its 100-year history of aircraft research and design with the Lightning II. Principal partners Northrop Grumman and BAE Systems build the center and aft fuselages, respectively. Northrop Grumman also brings its expertise in carrier aircraft and low-observable stealth technology to the F-35 program and supports logistics, sustainment, modeling and simulation and mission planning. BAE Systems contributes a rich heritage of capabilities, including short takeoff and vertical landing experience, advanced lean manufacturing, flight testing and air systems sustainment. Pratt & Whitney builds the F-35’s F135 propulsion system, the world’s most powerful fighter engine. After the Lockheed tour you will have time to explore Fort Worth and do lunch on your own. In the late 19th century Fort Worth became an important trading post for cowboys at the end of the Chisholm Trail. A few things to see in Fort Worth include the Kimbell Art Museum, the Fort Worth Stockyards and the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame.

silent auction

Tuesday September 26th ~ Dinner & Silent Auction ~ 6:00pm-10:00pm ~ Included in Registration Price

The Silent Auction Buffet Dinner will be at the hotel; Our ‘Silent Auction’ will feature three beautifully etched, hand painted and numbered bottles of “Fighter Pilot Red” (one is 3 liters and two are 2.25 liters). The wines are provided through the generosity of the Bella Luna Winery, Paso Robles, CA and its owner Sherman Smoot a longtime supporter of DFC Society events. We are also pleased to announce that Virginia Bader Fine Arts will add a lovely aviation lithograph for you to place your bid on. Additionally, Boeing, Bell Helicopter, Sikorsky, and Lockheed Martin will be donating various aircraft models for you to bid on, which you may take possession of following our Gala; where they will serve as table centerpieces. Should you have an item that you would like to add to the collection or if you know of a sponsor that may offer other items to include, please contact: Rick Graham at (214) 707-5077.

Optional Tour ~ Wednesday September 27th ~ 8:00am-12:00pm ~ Bell Helicopter ~ Cost $25

Cobra V-22
Bell Helicopter Global Headquarters in located in Fort Worth and is where they pionered the Rotorcraft and Tiltrotor Aircraft. Our tour will include The Bell History Wall and their advanced manufacuring center where you will see the composite work of a V-22 Osprey. The Bell Boeing V-22 is the world’s first production tiltrotor aircraft, successfully blending the vertical flight capability of a helicopter with the speed, range, altitude and endurance of an airplane. This unique combination provides the war fighter with an unprecedented advantage. This allows more effective mission execution and realization of missions previously unachievable in one aircraft. Comprehensively tested and currently in full-rate production, the Bell Boeing V-22 has proven to be a survivable and transformational platform in the most challenging environments on the planet. You will also see a H-1 Aircraft as well as several comercial models like the Bell 407 and 429.

Wednesday September 27th ~ Gala Dinner ~ 6:00pm-11:00pm~ Included in Registration Price
Our Gala will be opened with a stirring rendition of “God Bless America” sung by Rebecca Henricks who is a 5th generation Texan that has been singing her heart out all over the world. Henricks’ music is a unique blend of traditional country and bluegrass that is a sound that is distinctly her own. Rebecca is married to retired USAF Colonel and four-time space shuttle pilot/commander, Tom Henricks. Tom is a long-time DFC Society member and supporter. Rebecca and Tom reside in the Texas Hill Country and fly their 1940 Stearman bi-plane. To say the least, Rebecca’s patriotic roots run deep and she’s happily keeping it country.
We are honored to announce that the featured keynote, at the 2017 Gala, will be delivered by none other than Eileen M. Collins. As one of four children of Irish immigrants, growing up in rural Elmira, NY, Eileen never relinquished her dreams of flight. She is a former astronaut and an Air Force colonel, retiring in 2005 and subsequently from NASA in 2006, after a 28-year distinguished career. A former military instructor and test pilot, Collins was the first woman pilot and first woman commander of a space shuttle. Among her many notable academic achievements, Collins graduated from the Air Force Test Pilot School, at Edwards Air Force Base, California, in 1990. She was selected by NASA and became an astronaut in July 1991. She first flew the space shuttle as pilot in 1995 aboard Discovery. This mission was the first space shuttle to rendezvous with the Russian Space Station MIR. She was also the pilot for Atlantis in 1997, where her crew docked with MIR. Collins became the first woman commander of a U.S. spacecraft with shuttle mission Columbia in 1999. Her final space flight was as the commander of Discovery in 2005, the “Return to Flight Mission” after the tragic loss of Columbia. She has logged more than 6,751 hours in 30 different types of aircraft and more than 872 hours in space as a veteran of four space flights. Collins currently serves on several corporate boards, including USAA, and advisory panels, is a professional speaker and an aerospace consultant. She is married with two children. Those in attendance should prepare to be inspired by a powerful example of lifetime achievement.

Rebeca Hendricks           Eileen M. Collins

REBECCA HENRICKS                                             EILEEN M. COLLINS

For more information contact:
The Reunion BRAT
360-663-2521
Email: thereunionbrat@hotmail.com
 Confirmation of registration and itinerary will be sent out by August 29, 2017
 A $20 per person cancellation fee will apply to all cancellations received within 30 days of the event. Cancellations received within 15 days of the event will be non-refundable.
 Call the Dallas Marriott at 888-843-1165 no later than August 24, 2017 to make your hotel reservations. Be sure to mention you are with the Distinguished Flying Cross Society to receive your group rate of $129 .00 per night plus tax.
 These prices are available 3 days prior to and 3 days after your event depending on availability should you choose to extend your stay.