An association of Aerographers & Mates,
Meteorologists & Oceanographers

NWSA Airship Chapter

Lakehurst, N.J.


President                     Rod Elliot

Vice President            Al Parisi

Secretary/Treasurer  Gene Merrill

Reporter                       Pam Elliott

Chaplain                       Marie Garrity

Sunshine                      Marie Garrity

Chapter News

Source: Aerograph August 2013


The Airship Chapter will hold their Summer Luncheon at the Captain's Inn in Forked River August 6, 2013.

   Our prayers go out to the following: Al & Jane Parisi, Mike & Marie Garrity, Toddy McGayhey, Bob and Lucille Wiorek who continue to have health issues. It is with sadness to say we lost Ann Bucher June 16. We will all miss her.

   Charlie & Carol Moffett:  We are back in our home after "Sandy."  Still trying to get everything reorganized and or replaced. This was such great news. They have been displaced long enough.

   Ann Bucher: Greetings, I am writing to let everyone know that my Mother passed this morning (6/16/2013) at 4:15 a.m. Amy and I were at her side holding her hand. She has been ill for some time, and suffering in such a way, I am comforted to know she doesn't hurt anymore.

   As you might know, she was an amazing woman, fabulous Mother, Nanny and great Nana, Aunt, Sister, a steadfast and loyal friend and damn feisty woman when the mood suited her. She was an excellent cook, a superb seamstress, kept great gardens, played a mean hand of cards, painted and read...all kinds of books. And she could discuss so many topics with gusto. But the best of all is her love.

    So please honor her in your own way, lifting a glass of cheer. Visit a lighthouse, hug a friend, write a note to someone you haven't spoken to in awhile.  Just live fully and appreciate the days, and know she's checking the weather where ever she is.

                    With love, honor and respect to you all.  Kathie her beloved daughter

   Rich & Naomi Edwards: Alas. we will be in Illinois. Blessings To All.

   Ray & Joann Bierly: Greetings to everyone.  Hope that you are all enjoying your summer. Had to have our VERY LARGE live oak tree removed.  Was that a job.  We will miss the shade it provided.  We celebrated our 51st Wedding Anniversary on July 1st.  Ray decided to resign from his volunteer position at the hospital after 5 years.  He has probably completed 25 jigsaw puzzles since January.  I still volunteer in the Spiritual Care Dept. of the hospital after 11 years.  We keep busy.  Looking forward to visiting our son and his family in October in New Mexico for the Hot Air Balloon Festival.  Shalom, Joann and Ray  

   Gene & Carol Merrill: In July the Merrill's went to Old Town Maine to celebrate 65 years since the class of 1948 graduated. The average age was 83 years old and was attended by 20 of the 76 graduates. They celebrated with a dinner on Friday night and met at a lakeside cabin the next day for a barbecue. The weather was great, plenty of sun, and outstanding fellowship with everyone. Everyone is looking forward to getting together for their 70 year reunion.

   On a sad note they would like to thank everyone for their prayers and thoughtfulness on the passing of their son, Dr. Richard Hader.

   To our troops we thank you for serving our country. God Bless them all and God Bless America          

    Rod and Pam Elliott: We were on a road trip for 20 days. Left home to attend a Diesel Truck Rally at the Cummings mid-range engine plant in Columbus IN. From there it was to Bowling Green KY to see the Corvette Museum, the plant tours were closed. From there we headed south to Pensacola to see Pam's sister and her husband for 4/5 days. Next stop was Enterprise AL to visit Rod's brother. Final stop was VA Beach to see daughter Kristie, granddaughter Hannah and her dad. Got to see Hannah's annual dance recital. It is hard to believe next year will be 10 Years for her.

   Happy Summer and good health to all from each Airship Chapter Member

Submitted by Reporter Pam Elliott


Source: Aerograph May 2013


The Airship Chapter will hold their Spring Luncheon at the Captain's Inn in Forked River April 9, 2013.

     Our prayers go out to the following: Al & Jane Parisi, Mike & Marie Garrity, Toddy McGayhey, Ann Bucher has been in the hospital for pneumonia, Bob Wiorek who has been receiving chemo treatment but has complications and Gene and Carol Merrill's son who continued chemo treatment but passed away. Everyone in our Chapter send thoughts and prayers to Don Cruse.

     Charlie & Carol Moffett report their house renovations on Long Beach Island are proceeding.  They expect to be in about the middle of April. This is repairing damage from Super Storm Sandy.

     Bob &Lucille Wiorek: Bob was in the hospital again. We went for his Chemo on Tues. but he couldn't get it because his blood count Red cells were so low.  I was to take him for 2 units of blood on Thurs. When we got to the hospital he was so weak they took him to the ER to be checked and they gave him the blood there. After getting the blood his white count dropped real low so they kept him over night. It was a long day, we went there at 7:30 a.m. and I came home at 11p.m. He was able to come home Friday afternoon but is very weak. He is on more medication because he also was running a temp.

     Ray & Joann Bierly: We are both well.  The winter has been unseasonably warm.  Rain is needed for the new growth of spring.  Sorry that we have not been able to visit with the Airship Chapter but we are grateful to you all for being there.  We think our last NWSA Reunion was in Branson in 2005.  Just like Spring, we hope the Jersey Shore is looking more and more renewed; new growth, new beginnings.  Have Blessed Spring and Summer.  Shalom.

     Mike & Marie Garrity: It has been a long & cold winter here in New Jersey & Mike & I look so forward to warmer weather that the coming Springtime will bring. We can see the buds of some flowers popping up & the new buds on the trees. By the time this is printed & read, Easter Sunday will have come & gone. The weather patterns have so changed this year & they tell us it will get worse. So we must place our hope & faith in the word of God by reading & believing his Holy word the Bible that if we believe nothing can separate us from his love & protection. Mike & I are grateful for all the blessings on us & our entire family. Life is not easy & sometimes is a struggle, but we each take one day at a time & give thanks knowing with the empty cross, we can face the future & whatever it may bring. We just celebrated (59) years of marriage & enjoy each new day God gives us sharing love with one another & our precious family. So from our home to yours we send best wishes & great memories of all of you.

     Gene and Carol Merrill: Their son, Richard lost his battle with brain cancer. All in this chapter send prayers to them and their family. God bless America and keep our service people out of harm's way.

     Toddy McGayhey: Toddy turned 97 on 2/21/2013. The Elliott's came to visit & bring her the traditional M & M's. There was a cake cutting for family and friends on 2/23/2013. Gene & Carol Merrill and Hank Losch were among the many attending.  She looked good. Please keep her in your thoughts and drop a note; she would be very pleased to hear from you.

     Rod and Pam Elliott: Life is good for the Elliott's. Pam continues to be busy with the Credit Union and Rod is reading WEB Griffin series books for the second go around. None of his authors write fast enough for his book a day habit. He is about to get a week or so of peace as Pam will join daughter Kristie, son-in-law Dick and granddaughter Hannah for a spring break trip to Branson!

Happy Spring and good health to all from each Airship Chapter Member.

Submitted by Reporter Pam Elliott


Source: Aerograph February 2013


The Airship Chapter had the Annual Christmas Luncheon at the Captain's Inn in Forked River. Attendees were: Rod & Pam Elliott, Gene & Carol Merrill, Bill & Joan Sudam, Mike & Marie Garrity, Charlie & Carol Moffett, Bob & Lucille Wiorek, Henry and Bobbie Losch, Rich and Noami Edwards and Norman Macomber. President Rod Elliott welcomed all  The Secretary/Treasurer reports were presented and approved. There was no old business, new business was a reminder dues are due. A request for a Sunshine person to replace Ann Bucher due to health issues, Marie Garrity volunteered. Motion to adjourn by Bill Sudam and seconded by Noami Edwards.

 Each in attendance was anxious to speak to Charlie and Carol to find out how their home on Long Beach Island was. We have had many picnics at their lovely home. They lost one of two boats and the whole first floor and the contents, no damage to the second floor. They had contractors coming the day of the luncheon. Their neighbor was wintering in the south so offered their home to Moffett’s. Charlie was glad for that so they will  have first hand views on repairs to their home.

  Gene Merrill: Had a note from Harry Whitworth, he sent best of all to everyone; called Toddy McGayhey but found it hard to communicate with her as she does not hear well on the telephone; Al and Jane Parisi continue to have health issues; Ann Bucher has not been feeling well. Please keep all of the sick in your prayers.


  Received an email from Joann Bierly:  Enjoyed my time in Albuquerque, N.M.  Mostly helping to unpack, organize, paint and take paper to recycle.  We did spend Saturday in Santa Fe enjoying the art galleries.  Jeff and Suzan found the ones they had purchased some art pieces at years ago.  The next day we were in Old Town in the heart of Albuquerque.  Suzan even connected with someone Grant (grandson) and I met and they are invited to their home for New Years Eve.  Large city with a small town atmosphere.  Ray and I hope to go back in October for the Hot Air Balloon Festival.  There were balloons in the air almost every morning.  Now Ray wants to find out if the casino has 7 card stud poker.  What a life!!!!  New area to explore and there is an Air Force base there.

  Gene and Carol Merrill: were fortunate that they only lost a couple of large tree limbs from Hurricane "Sandy." Some of their friends were much less fortunate as they lost part or all of their homes and some of are unsettled two months later.
  They felt fortunate to be able to spend Christmas with their son, Richard and his family as he still fights the battle of brain cancer. We sincerely thank all that have been praying for him and his family. God is the Great Physician and He will be the one that will make the final decision.
  On the happier side they had their granddaughter, "Kristy" move in for her 7th and 8th month of pregnancy, with her Jack Russell dog, Phoebe and parakeet. Her husband, Jay was in the process of renovating their home, which is only a mile away from them. They are anxiously awaiting the birth of their Great granddaughter during the 2nd or 3rd week of January. Phoebe will be coming back to them until she can adjust to having a baby in the house. They have become very attached to the dog.

  May God Bless you all, God Bless America and all our service people who keeps us safe by serving our Country.

  From the Garrity's" We feel so blessed to say we survived "Sandy". All our family are safe and we give thanks. As we look around our beautiful state, we realize just how blessed we truly are. It’s hard to imagine the loss so many people have suffered. Prayers go out to them. Mike & I will celebrate (59) years of marriage in January, and they said it would never last! We are so thankful that our entire family are well & still growing. Only a few weeks ago our son's daughter, Colleen gave birth to

#15 great grandchild, a little boy & on her birthday. Talk about being blessed.

As we enter into this Advent season, we prepare & look forward to a world of Love, Peace, Joy &

Hope as we welcome the Christ Child.

   January begins with beginning sick with the (bug) that is going around, but today I think (?) I feel better? lol Been so long I am afraid to think I am. I had to take Mike to the Dr. with his bout with it, but me, I try very hard to let my immune system take over. He was put on an antibiotic. He was coughing so hard it scared me. With all his other problems I didn't want to take a chance of not getting him to the Dr. But, I really feel like I too, am on the road to feeling better.

Please pray for the state of New Jersey & all those everywhere who suffer from the harshness

of life. So, from our home to yours we send love & best wishes for a "Happy, Healthy, and New Year".

From Frank McGayhey : My mother, Inez 'Toddy' McGayhey, has had a very quiet but pleasant Thanksgiving, Christmas & New Years. We had dinner at Mom's home (Paula, my wife, cooked at our house and we brought it over) both for Thanksgiving and for Christmas. I took some pictures and will be posting them at Facebook. At Thanksgiving it was just my family and the care giver Agatha. At Christmas, my mother's cousin, Kathryn Lathrop, who is also her part time care giver (to help Agatha getting Mom up in the morning and putting her to bed at night), joined us. While New Years was quiet, Mom insisted that she be awakened at 11:45 to watch the ball drop and that is what we did. I am not sure when the last time she saw the revelry in Times Square was.

  My mother has received many cards and notes and some photographs and appreciated every one. She has her cards surrounding her bed and the photographs where she can see them. We also had a few visitors which she greatly enjoyed seeing including some relatives, friends and members of her church. One church visitor who lives in South Seaside Park has not been able to return to her home since Sandy. (How I wish my father had been here to have seen those storms. While I know no one wanted to see the loss of life or damage, watching that storm develop must have been more than interesting to anyone in weather. The Weather Channel has a very interesting special on the storm. When it airs again [and I am sure it will] try to catch it if you haven't already.) The church visitor and her family had been evacuated to a friend's house which was damaged so that household was evacuated to a hotel in Woodbridge (40 or so miles away) which quickly lost power for several days.) They then moved to an apartment in Pennsylvania and finally to a temporary residence in Toms River. They may be back in their home by now as it was not severely damaged. The main problem was no utilities and the roads were a mess. She was very happy to be able to finally get back to her visits and was apologetic for having missed several. I could not believe anyone who had been through what she had been through could make visiting my mother a priority. I felt like she should have been the one getting visited. She even brought Mom a poinsettia. Besides this lady, Mom gets a number of visitors from the Presbyterian church and receives communion once a month.


My mother is visited each month by a wonderful Nurse Practitioner, Cathy. On her November visit, I asked how she made out in the storm (as you do although after her answer I am a bit more discreet in how I lead up to the question) and she responded that her family was all safe, that her 6' tall son had water up to his shoulders on her first floor and that they had lost two cars. The estimate was that they would not be home for at least a year. She and her husband planned to beat that. She was back on December 21st; I said I hoped they were going to be able to celebrate Christmas in spite of what they had gone through. Her response still chokes me up. She said that after what happened in Connecticut the previous week, she felt that she'd had a great year. Her family was intact and together. I still get choked up when I think about her response. We Toms River McGayhey's were so blessed this year compared to so many. We had little storm damage, one tree, some shingles and siding. The electricity was off for several days after each storm and both houses got cold. I was starting to look for places to send my mother at least temporary to keep her warm but then everything was restored. We are as intact on 1/1/13 as we were on 1/1/12 and we are meeting so many wonderful people as we travel down this last road with my mother. Kathy lives only a few blocks from where we lived after we first got married and moved back to Toms River. So I had to see the old neighborhood. Our house at 41 Bartine had a pile of trash in front which seemed small compared to just about every other house in the Silver Bay neighborhood of Toms River. It looked like they had water in their garage but otherwise it looked fine. It stands much taller than most of the other houses in the neighborhood. Before we bought it, I saw it right after a Nor'easter went though. It was the one house in the neighborhood that did not have water up to the foundation. This time the neighborhood was not so lucky. Several houses closer to the water were completely destroyed and many had major damage. The piles of trash in front of the houses (trash such as, televisions, rugs, appliances, kid’s toys, photograph albums, memories and like) were so high that they constrained the view of the house itself.


When Agatha came, she thought it was only going to be temporary but with Patience having to leave it became permanent. So rather than have Agatha take three days to go to her home in Newark to get clothes and things for a longer stay, I made a day trip out of it. I saw parts of Newark I have never seen before. We went to an African supermarket and she shopped for things I never knew existed. I did not know there were so many ways you could butcher a goat. We now watch for good looking Okra in Shop-Rite and buy it for her when it looks fresh. While I eat Okra no one else here will touch it so this is a new experience for the rest of them. I have been able to discuss many aspects of life in Nigeria, Haiti and Ghana with these ladies and that has been an interesting experience. For awhile, when Mom was on Hospice (they expelled her as her condition is stable not declining) and the Hospice chaplain was a Rabbi. That was great. I made sure I was over there for those visits. I hope no one takes this wrong but we now even look forward to the Jehovah's Witnesses who stop by at least weekly. I am not sure I would have let them in the first time but Agatha thought they were from the Presbyterian Church so she let them in. At first I was not sure but Mom seemed happy and they are two more people who visit and talk to her. They seem very nice and it is always the same two ladies. Mom asks me each time they leave if we should be giving them a donation. They never ask for anything so I need to look in to that.


Mom keeps up with the news reading the newspaper every day, watching mostly CNN and NEWS 12 New Jersey and reading a few magazines. She is reading a book that T. Bronson O'Reilly sent to my father. Title is something like 'Events that Changed the World'.  It has a chapter in it about some of Mr. O'Reilly's WWII experience. Mr. O'Reilly graduated from high school with my father. He went in to the Navy in '38 and was a weatherman. He told my father that weather was a great career and the rest as they say is history. (It is a bit longer story than that but this has already got a bit out of hand.) Mom's 97th birthday will be February 21st and she is already looking forward to it. This year I think I will have a low key celebration on Thursday the 21st and see if people would prefer to come around on the Saturday or Sunday. I am going to ask those who were here last year to get a sense of what they would prefer and go from there. I will keep you informed as we get a bit closer to the date. Certainly any of you would be welcome to visit her the 21st, 23rd, 24th or any day convenient to you. Mom is hopefully not going anywhere any time soon.

  My mother, Paula, my children and I hope everyone in the Weather community has a safe, happy and healthy New Year.

  Frank McGayhey

  Rod and Pam Elliott: We continue to give our support to our daughter Kristie as she adjusts to life without her beloved husband John. She is trying to adjust to living with Dick and Hannah (son-in-law & granddaughter). Keeping up with Hannah keeps her busy which is good. We look forward to time with family over Christmas then off to Orlando for 3 weeks and Jax for a week.

                                         Good health from each Airship Chapter Member!

Submitted by Reporter Pam Elliott