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05/25/2017

Terrill, Robert [Bob]

As I start to process these memories, one memory jumps to another, and this experience is like dominoes falling, and I end up with a memory that’s miles from the first one.  Some are memories that have arisen many times since I graduated (why was I such a mediocre student?), and the same answers come back (attitude). Some are memories that I don’t want (during an AXP meeting I used an inappropriate nickname the Brothers had for a Brother that I thought he knew about.  His comments and the looks of others ⇒ great embarrassment for me).  Reading Bob Allen’s account of Gator Daze reminded me of the Crow Pledges of ‘67 and our trip back from the initiation “party” that the Brother’s had for us ‘out in the woods’ and of the heavy snow and low visibility for both us and the car drivers on that road with little berm.  Some memories I can’t mention because the statutes of limitation may not have expired.  As my life rolls along, and I face challenges, I am continually grateful for my time at Allegheny and for the people I met there.  Both of these have helped me to understand and to overcome many of those challenges.  

Education after Allegheny

Part of my graduation from Allegheny involved receiving a commission as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Air Force via the ROTC program.  During my 4 and a half years on active duty with them, which was an education also, I had the opportunity to take some classes from the Univ. of So. Cal., Univ. of Maryland, and a language class in Germany.  When I left the AF, I felt I needed to take a new path.  I enrolled at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo, CA as a journalism major.  In my first term I took a simple Computer Science class, COBOL, and I got hooked.  For 3 and a half years all my electives were Comp Sci classes.  I ran out of VA money in 1976, and so my wife and I moved to London, and lived in the community (Ealing/Acton) where she grew up.  I was able to attend classes in Computer Science for two years (paid by my employer) at the Polytechnic of the South Bank.

Marriage

Therese Madoline Osborne and I married in April 1975.  We met at a Royal Air Force AB in northern Germany near the Dutch border.   She was teaching children of the RAF families stationed there, and I was assigned there with a small detachment of USAF munitions troops in support of the U. S. role in NATO to protect Europe from the Soviet forces massed at the Elbe River.  

Where I’ve lived

1967 => 1969   Stationed at Vandenberg AFB in Lompoc CA, and served as Administrative Services and Security Officer for the 6596th Instrumentation Squadron at the Vandenberg Tracking Station.  Enjoyed the West Coast amenities.  Crossed paths with other Gators (Pete Clendenin and Tom Boland) and my AF Summer Camp TAC Capt Ceruti.

Nov 1969  => Nov 1970 – Stationed at Takhli RTAFB, Thailand, and served as the Squadron Section   Commander for the 355th Supply Squadron.  Roomed next door to Wayne Abbott(AC ‘65) and saw Tom King (AC ‘65) from time to time.  Enjoyed trips to Bangkok, Chiang Mai, and local excursions guided by Thai co-workers.  Met folks from all over the USA.  Started realizing that I had not studied enough at Allegheny.

Jan 1971 => Apr 1971 – Stationed at Bitburg AB, Bitburg Germany, and served as Squadron Section  Commander for the 36th Supply Squadron.  I was just getting settled in when in April, I was reassigned to a NATO position that became vacant unexpectedly.

Apr 1971 => Feb 1972 – Stationed at Bruggen RAFB in Elmpt, Germany, and served as the Administrative Services Officer and one of the command and control officers for NATO strike aircraft for DET 4, 36th TFW.  Not much chance to travel because of the workload, but I did manage to see parts of Germany, Belgium, and Holland; and the best part of this assignment, I met the woman I would marry.  In December of 1971 Richard Nixon decided to get rid of the more highly paid troops, and he offered an “Early Out” of the USAF, and I along with many others accepted his offer.

Jul 1976 => Nov 1980 – Lived in London, England.  Worked, played, and started a family

My jobs

In brief summary, when we were in London, I worked in the London Transport IT department supporting Payroll and Pension Admin, and Bus Operations computer applications.

When we returned to the USA in 1980, I developed software for a manufacturing company, a consumer products company, an aerospace company, two automotive companies, a university, a credit rating company, a health care provider, a large data services and payroll company, and now I develop software for a cyber security company.  The jobs came and went with the wind, and resulted from bankruptcy, layoffs due to economic uncertainties and management missteps, outsourcing, and contract expirations.  

I consider one of my jobs in life is to have fun.  One of the ways my wife and I experience that is by traveling.

We have been to the U.S. East Coast and back in a Volkswagen Camper, Canada, Mexico, Costa Rica, many EU countries, and a short jaunt to Africa.  Regardless of amenities, we have never been anywhere we didn’t like or didn’t feel comfortable.  

Our children / grandchildren

Our daughter Michelle was born in 1979.  She loved school until Junior High, when she checked out.  As she began her senior year in High School, she realized she needed to get back on track.  She started taking classes at two of the local Community Colleges, and continued there for 3 years after HS graduation.  She transferred to UCLA and graduated in 2002.  She has been teaching in a local Elementary School since then.

She is married and has two children, Apolline (9 years) and Harrison (6 weeks).  She lives about 1 mile from us in the neighboring city of Westminster, and we get together several times a week for fun and work.

Retirement

I appear to be frightened by the prospect.  It’s a combination of that fear and the fun I have at work (probably some validation also, and the money for traveling) that keeps me coming back for more.  I usually take Mondays off and work from home on Tuesdays, so it’s only three days to commute.  I’m 50-50 on whether I’ll enjoy retirement.

Current activities / hobbies

Watching period English programs on TV, church activities, traveling, spending time with my Mom who now lives in a residential home near us (in the “independent” wing), child minding grandchildren, yard maintenance, and reading when I get the chance.  Trevor Noah’s book is at the front of the queue now.

My contact Info

Address:  6231 Briarcliff Drive, Huntington Beach, CA, 92647
Phone:  714-348-3379
Email:  

Graduation

My wife and daughter pursuing one of their hobbies

Granddaughter Apolline on Christmas Day

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