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Special Visitors to NAFBM
Was surprised to have Michael Maple visit the Norton AFB Museum. He came in at closing, we only had a short time to talk about our time at Norton. We talked about the summer camps at Hickam. I did have time to show Mike the pictures of the UFO we shot down at Deadhorse. Mike lives in Riverside and he will come back again to visit.
A couple of history buffs, son and dad, brought in maps from WWII of the invasion at Normandy to share with the Nortom AFB Museum. “Top Secret – Bigot” was the Allies’ highest level of secrecy during WWII. They acquired the map thru an estate sale. Value approximately $9,500.00.
Paul Pfeifer from the 14th stopped in at the Norton AFB Museum. He was at Norton from 69' to closing. We hadn't seen Paul in a while. It was interesting to keep up to date on Paul's activities. He lives in Highland, CA.
Pilot Wayne Lemoi was at the Norton AFB Museum. He was at Norton 75' to 78'. He brought back a lot of good memories. He now lives in Corona, CA.
Pat Morris, the Mayor of San Bernardino, California from 2006 to 2014, visited the NAFB Museum today. He is very athletic, staying in shape bicycling. He has great stories about providing athletic opportunities for the youth of San Bernardino.
Billy & Donna Mitchell took a picture in front of our new C-141 banner.
Dudley gave a tour to guests from Essex UK. Andy and Adele are doing the Route 66 self-guided tour from Chicago. They will return for the 100th anniversary in 2026’.
Crew chief James Deal visited the NAFB Museum. His dad FE Robert Deal was assigned to Norton 68’-70’ on the C-123. James told an interesting story while assigned to Da Nang. John Wayne was walking the flightline at night shaking hands with the maintenance guys working their aircraft.
NAFB Museum was visited by Flt Surgeon Col Eric Paul and his wife Lt Karen of the Mexican Air Force. They live in Mexico City and have relatives here in San Berdo. I wanted to know how our local Mexican food compares to theirs. He said our American food was the best.
On June 17th, retired school teacher Doris Anderson donated a Flying Tigers flight jacket to the NAFB Museum. Doris would wear the jacket to school during Memorial Day week and tell the kids the story of the Flying Tigers. We will research which pilot in the Panda Bears Squadron this jacket belonged to and set up a display for him. We know he is a Navy pilot and passed away in California.
Col Merrill, Commander 68 AES visited her display at the NAFB Museum.
Saturday Esther Gobin visited the NAFB Museum to donate items her husband Mathura “Mat” Gobin had obtained while stationed at Norton. She recalled the 1st time she saw Mat and told her girlfriend she was going to marry him. He was first assigned to 63rd OMS in 83’. In 86’ he cross-trained as a flight engineer with the 14th MAS. In 88’ he was one of the Initial Cadre of personnel to reactivate the 52nd MAS. He was always proud to tell everyone about his time with the US Air Force.
T. Collins returned to the NAFB Museum to pickup her souvenirs and show us her jacket. She drove down from W. Covina.
Tom and Michael Valle visited the Museum on February 23rd. Tom was Army during Desert Storm and now lives in Grand Terrace.
Loadmaster Daniel Jones from the 53d MAS visited the NAFB Museum on January 7th, 2023. He was stationed at Norton from 79' to closing. He is living in Yucaipa and spending his time bike riding with his buddies.
Ex-San Bernardino Councilman, Chas Kelly and his family visited the NAFB Museum on Saturday, December 3rd. He recounted his stories when he was part of the California Civil Air Patrol at Norton from 1982' to 1987'.
On November 10th, Sgt John Sisson from Brookeville, MD, visited the NAFM Museum to see his memorial brick. John received a lottery draft number of 1, so he wasted no time visiting the AF recruiter. He was assigned to Norton as a Jet Mac from 73’ to 76’. We talked about when we failed the ORI, the Jet Bar, and other stories. We enjoyed sharing the stories of Norton.
Karen Kellingworth visited the NAFB Museum on November 3rd. She worked at Norton from 82’ to 92’. She started at MWR right out of high school. She got promotions to CE, 445th Wing Headquarters and BMO. She may help us out as a docent.
On October 27th at the NAFB Museum, Crew Chief Karl Rogge visited from Redding CA. He was at Norton from 66’ to 69’ when the C-141’s arrived. His aircraft was 67-957. Before he arrived at Norton, he was an instructor at Chanute AFB.
We were privileged to meet one of the original Sneaky Pete Flt Engr’s, Dudley Hicks at the NAFB Museum on October 13th, 2022. He was 1st assigned with the Sneaky Pete’s when they were assigned to Area 51. They eventually moved to Area 2. He was assigned here in 72’ and left Norton in 82’. Dudley has moved to Redlands to be near his daughter. We hope he will spend more time with us at the museum and tell us more stories.
Rebecca Lee visited the NAFB Museum. When the base closed in 94’, BMO still required security. They moved a detail of DAF Police from March ARB to provide the security. They were staged in a couple of the NCO housing buildings. When they were notified, there was some joking around about the infamous pot bust of the security police barracks at Norton. We shared stories and had a great afternoon.
David Espinosa (on the right) from Elen shop and his buddy Eric McClendon visited the NAFB Museum on Saturday. They are members of the Florida Air National Guard TDY at Miramar working on the F-15. David was assigned here in 86’ and left after 6 years. We talked about the people we knew like Kenny Smalls and Jacki. We shared a lot of great times on the base.
53rd and 52nd Loadmaster Patrick “PJ” Sims visited the NAFB Museum today from VA. He was here 79’-92’. Bill Vest recalled they were at Charleston when Bill got promoted to MSGT. PJ took pictures of him getting promoted with the FLT crew. PJ was telling us about his spelunker experiences. Bill and PJ spent the day talking about the good times and old friends.
Phung Le, AF Academy graduate, returned to Norton to visit BMO where he was assigned 86’-89’. They live in FL. His oldest son will soon be attending the Academy and may follow in his father’s footsteps.
Great visit from Bert Rollins of Fontana. He has checked out the radar sites used by the SAGE building at Area 2. Some are still used by the FAA. At one site the local miners were questioning why he was there. The miners were working on old turquoise mine and didn't want people poking around. Bert does a lot of exploring at old military installations. We invited him back to spend more time with us.
Justin Lopez and his daughter visited the museum July 7th. Justin was at Norton in the early years. His plane was the C-47 Gooney Bird.
The 10 Tankers DC-10s are assigned to San Bernardino Airport and they are the only Very Large Air Tankers working in the Forest Service. We had two of their best pilots visit the NAFB Museum today (July 16, 2022). Pat Hopf and Matt McNamara. Pat was at Norton 77’-79’ and a crew chief too. They had the day off and were told by other Forest Service pilots that they had to visit the museum.
Scott Hilyer visited the NAFB Museum from Alabama. He was security police at Norton from 83' to 85'. He remembers the security police barracks drug bust. He did investigations and recalls the agent they had undercover at the clinic. Looking back on his time at Norton, he played a lot of golf, spending mornings and evenings on the golf course. He was TDY at China Lake and next time he will spend more time with us. We had a nice visit and look forward to his return.
Family members of Col James DeElton Elmer, USAF Retired, 1934-2020 visited the NAFB Museum from KY. Daughter Susan and grand-daughters Mary and FaithLynn made the trip. Col Elmer was assigned to Norton 78’-88’. He was first Deputy Commander and then Commander of the Aerospace Audiovisual Service for eight years. He was honored by the non-commissioned officers of AAVS by being inducted into The Order of the Sword.
Ginny Driggs wife of Lt. Col. Dan Driggs and grandson visited the NAFB Museum to donate historical photos at Norton. Dan was assigned to the 14th and then to the 15th. He first got here in 78’ and finally left in 86".
Jason Herrera and family visited the NAFB Museum from Az. He was surprised to see his co-worked from Troop Support Billy Mitchel working at the museum. Jason was at Norton from 88’ to 94’. Billy was showing the certificate of appreciation they got for receiving a Laudatory during an inspection. They were talking about the section going fishing and they stopped by IN-Flt to pick-up their lunches. Those were good times.
Steven Bisset of Nevada came to the NAFB Museum on May 21st. Steven was with the 2193rd Comm Sq 68'-70'. It was interesting talking with him about the radios.
Two more APS members showed up today at the NAFB Museum. Charles Eldridge from Cerritos and Roger Waller from Torrance, CA. They have been friends from 1973 when they joined the Reserve APS. They retired in year 2000. Charles says he can fix us up with his chem suit. He was going to throw it out but then he thought we might take it. So, we will have a chem suit for display. It was a good time talking with them about Norton and life in retirement.
Mr. and Mrs. Dennis Medrano from Redlands dropped in to the NAFB Museum on April 16, 2022. Dennis was a crew chief on the B-52s at Mather AFB. He spent many hours on alert status.
Jose Torres prior Army Paratrooper Platoon Sgt from Texas dropped in to the NAFB Museum on April 16th, 2022. He had a lot of stories jumping off the C-141. To identify the new personnel, he had them put a red marker on top of their helmets. They were nick-named "Cherry Boys". He would also do the fake barf routine on them too. Today he flies corporate jets to the San Berdo Airport.
Charles Kinnear from the 68th AES visited the NAFB Museum on May 5th, 2022. He served as a medic from 85’-92’. It was a pleasure having Charles visit the museum. His daughter Donna was helping him thru the museum.
Jim Scherfenburg from Security Police Sqdr visited the NAFB Museum on May 5th, 2022. Jim served at Norton 90’-91’. He dropped in to donate his Desert Storm uniform. He is now retired and lives in San Berdo. We invited him to join us at the museum as a docent.
Veteran John Medlin (right) stops at a section of the Berlin Wall while being given a tour of the Norton Air Force Base Museum on Sunday, Nov. 1, the 50th anniversary of his homecoming from the Vietnam War.
Navy WW II Veteran visited the Norton AFB Museum and Veterans Memorial on “D” Day, June 6th 2019 Pictured admiring the section of the Berlin Wall in the Memorial Area is Calvin Willis, wife Pat, with Museum Docent Gail Edwards.
Young at Heart Club
Model A Club
Colton KinderCare School
San Bernardino CA Sister City Exchange Students
Highland KinderCare School
Norton Academy Students Group "A"
Norton Academy Students Group "B"
Norton Academy Students Group "C"
San Bernardino Valley College History Club
City of Yucaipa CA Red Hat Ladies Club
San Bernardino Chamber of Commerce
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