Don Brooks is the current Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force.
Born in Douglas, GA on April 14, 1950 and graduated in 1972 from Northwood University in Michigan with a BBA. He returned to Douglas to work in the family business with his father, Elton Brooks, a WWII B-17 Tail Gunner. This led Don to develop an intense interest in WWII aviation history. He has always said, “The more I learn about the great courage, sacrifice and dedication of our veterans, the more I feel obligated to do all that I can to honor them and to keep their memory alive.”
Don earned his private pilot license in 1980 and currently holds single-engine, multi-engine and instrument ratings plus type ratings in the Douglas DC-3 and Boeing B-17, and has over 4,500 total flight hours. In 1988 Don bought a C-47 (military DC-3), equipped it with skis and became part of The Greenland Expedition Society with Pat Epps. They were in search of the “Lost Squadron,” a flight of six P-38 fighters and two B-17 bombers that made a mass emergency landing on the Greenland Ice Cap in July, 1942. The crews were rescued, but the brand new planes were left behind to be covered in time by 260’ of ice and snow. Don was in charge of logistics for the three large expeditions in 1989, 1990 and 1992 when the P-38 “Glacier Girl” was recovered.
Don had hoped to rebuild one of the two B-17’s, but learned upon reaching it in 1990 that the B-17s were crushed beyond repair. Don immediately began to search Air Force crash records for another B-17; and found a good one that landed on a frozen lake in Labrador, Canada. The crew was rescued and the plane went through the ice in the spring on 1947. A 14-year quest of locating, gaining rights to and retrieving the bomber from the bottom of Dyke Lake ended with the B-17 being trucked to Douglas, GA.
Married to Donnell Brooks, resides in Douglas and has one son, Elton D. Brooks, III. Don was inducted into the Georgia Aviation Hall of Fame in 2017.
General Shuler was born in Raleigh, NC. He grew up in Orangeburg, SC and Caracas, Venezuela. He holds a B.S. degree in Civil Engineering from The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina, and an M.S. degree in Management from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. On 10 May 2014, he was awarded an honorary doctorate in Aerospace Science by The Citadel.
He served 32 years in the U.S. Air Force and was the Commander of the Eighth Air Force from March 1988 to May 1991. His flying career began in 1954 when he soloed in a J-3 Piper Cub. This would lead to his logging over 8,000 hours in 32 different types of aircraft. General Shuler was awarded his Air Force wings on 2 September 1960 and would log 7,650 hours including 225 combat hours in military aircraft. These included serving as a B-52 and F-4 aircraft commander. Gen. Shuler commanded two non-tactical squadrons, two B-52 Bombardment Wings, two SAC Air Divisions, and the Eighth Air Force. He also served as the Director of Operations for the Strategic Air Command. He retired with the grade of Lt. General effective 1 June 1991.
General Shuler is a member of Tau Beta Pi, a national engineering honor society; The Order of Daedalians, a national fraternal order of pilots; The Military Order of World Wars. The Air Force Association, The Sons of the Revolution; The Kappa Alpha Order fraternity and The Citadel Association of Graduates. He was selected as a distinguished Eagle Scout in 2007 and elected to the South Carolina Aviation Hall of Fame in 2010. In 2011 he was elected to The Citadel Academy of Engineers.
General Shuler served as the Chairman and CEO of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force from June 1992 to May 2004.
Buck and his wife Annette Fontaine Maury reside in Sumter, SC. They have three sons and eight grandchildren, and three great grandsons.
Scott W. Loehr is a third generation Floridian, having been born and raised in Fort Lauderdale. He earned a B.A. in History from Florida State University and an M.A. in History, with concentrations in Historic Preservation and Museum Studies, from Colorado State University.
Scott joined the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force as its CEO in December of 2017. In nearly forty years in the cultural-resources management profession, Scott has held leadership positions with the Museum of the Cape Fear Historical Complex (Fayetteville, NC), the Augusta (GA) Museum of History, the Newport (RI) Historical Society and the Delaware Historical Society. His areas of focus include strategic and organizational planning; operating, programmatic and capital fundraising; board relations and development; and exhibition and program development.
He is a past grants reviewer and evaluator with the Institute of Museum and Library Services, as well as a Museum Assessment Program assessor. Scott has served on numerous non-profit boards, particularly state museum associations. He is a co-editor and author of local history books.
Scott and his wife Deborah reside in Savannah, Georgia. They have two sons and five grandchildren.
Dan DeGood is the son of an Eighth Air Force B-24 pilot who flew thirty missions with the 453rd Bomb Group / 924th Bomb Squadron.
He worked on the “Wick Searcy Memorial Clays Schoot” for 6-years and help raise $170,000 for the museum. He also serves the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force as a volunteer tour guide.
He served as the Senior Vice President of Prudential financial in charge of Institutional Business Development. He was a member of the Institutional Business Senior Leadership Team Responsible for monthly review of financial performance for 5 Operating entities.
Mr. DeGood is retired and has served the community as the Landings Association Board of Directors-Finance Committee 3-years; Forest City Gun Club Former Treasurer and Board Member developing their first budget for operating expenses; Board liaison to Capital Asset Committee; United Way of Coastal Georgia-Finance Committee Mediation Center-Active civil and domestic mediator; Former SCORE mentor-small business start-ups-providing advice on developing financial plans and marketing plans.
Mr. Hawie is an avid student of World War II and particularly of the deeds of the Mighty Eighth Air Force during that conflict. He serves as a docent at the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force and has served as a Trustee and a member of the Executive Committee.
Mr. Hawie is a graduate of the Wharton School of Finance and Commerce at the University of Pennsylvania, and graduated Magna Cum Laude from the Boston University School of Law.
Mr. Hawie practiced corporate law with Shearman & Stealing in New York City beginning in 1962, and joined King & Spalding in Atlanta in 1968 where he practiced until his retirement as a senior partner in that firm in 2000.
Since his retirement, he has been active in various nonprofit organizations. His major interest has been in the history of the Mighty Eighth during its bombing of Nazi-occupied Europe.
Ed lives on St. Simons Island, GA.
Brent E. Bracewell is a native of Georgia, attended the University of Georgia and received his Army Commission through the Reserve Officers Training Corp program as a distinguished military graduate in 1986. Brent went on to serve 26 years, retiring as a Colonel in 2013. As an Army aviator, Brent had the privilege of qualifying and flying the UH-1, OH-58, C-12, and UH-60 Blackhawk. He earned awards from the Army Achievement, Air Medal, Bronze Star and Legion of Merit.
Brent’s volunteer service includes President of the GA Chapter of the Mighty Eighth Air Force Historical Society, Commemorative Air Force, and Civil Air Patrol. Brent is both a member and long time supporter of the Mighty Eighth Air Force Historical Society, National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force and the American Legion Post 135. He has no family connection with the mighty Eighth but a life-long admiration for them, and now a lifetime Mighty Eighth friends.
Brent is employed as a corporate pilot for The Southern Company, flying the S76C+ Helicopter. He is married to the former Jill Carnahan (of California) giving them a family of six daughters; they were recently blessed with an adopted son. Jill is a career educator (recently retired) who loves history, exercise and shopping (no in that order). Jill and Brent divide their time between Sharpsburg, GA and now Savannah, GA, recently fulfilling a long time dream of having a home in that lovely city.
Brent was a single father of four daughters until he met and married his lovely bride, the former Jill Carnahan (of California) in 2011 and they became a family with six daughters. Jill is a career educator who loves history, exercise and shopping (not in that order). Jill and Brent reside in Sharpsburg GA with their youngest daughter, who will soon graduate from high school (2016) and join her sisters in attending college and pursuing careers.
John J. O’Neil III is a past Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force.
John has served the museum in several different positions over the years. His first tenure with the museum began in 2007 when he was asked to serve on the Board of Trustees. John’s affiliation with the Mighty Eighth Air Force began at birth. John’s father was a combat veteran of the Mighty Eighth Army Air Force from 1942 – 1945. His father (John J. O’Neil Jr.) served as B-17 crewman (Tail & Waist Gunner) in the 95th Bomb Group, Lt. Bill Owen Crew. That crew was transferred to the 482nd Bomb Group in late 1943 to experiment with the early “Bomb Through Overcast” radar platforms of the H2S, H2X. John began attending Bomb Group and crew reunions with his father in the early 1980s until his father’s passing in 2006. John has written several articles and has spoken at events over the years on the history of radar’s use in the Eighth Air Force and the first successful bombing mission to Berlin on March 4th, 1944.
John is a retired UPS Executive. He is a 1981 graduate of Fairfield University School of Business. John’s career with UPS began in 1980 and spanned over thirty-eight years. He held both operations management and staff level assignments for UPS in CT, RI, MA, NY, SC, GA, IL, Belgium and Atlanta. GA. Prior to his retirement, John was VP of Corporate Global Workforce Planning and Strategy for UPS headquartered in Atlanta, Ga.
John and his wife Susan reside in Snellville, Ga and are the proud patents of three daughters Meghan, Erin and Colleen and three grandchildren Walt, Clara and Grant Wilson.
Richard “Sandy” Alderson is the son of a World War II Eighth Air Force pilot. Mr. Alderson has spent four decades in Major League Baseball, beginning in 1981 as General Consul and soon thereafter Vice President, Baseball Operations with the Oakland Athletics. He was the architect of the A’s team that won three consecutive American League pennants from 1988 – 1990 and won the World Series in 1989.
Mr. Alderson served as Major League Baseball’s Executive Vice President for Baseball Operations from 1998 – 2005, before returning to the front office to lead the San Diego Padres for four years. He became the New York Mets’ twelfth General Manager in 2010. stepping down in 2018. Mr. Alderson’s hiatus from baseball was brief, as he rejoined the Mets organization in November 2020 as its President until the end of 2022.
Mr. Alderson is a decorated Marine Infantry Officer, with a tour of duty in Vietnam. His many awards include the 2015 Baseball America Executive of the year; 2018 Marine Corps Sports Hall of Fame inductee; Lifetime Achievement Award from the Vietnam Veterans Association; and a Doctor of Humane Letters honorary degree from Dartmouth College. Mr. Alderson is a graduate of Dartmouth College and the Harvard School of Law.
He and his wife, Linda, have two children and six grandchildren.
Harry was born and raised in Memphis, Tennessee where he was active in Scouting and attained Eagle Rank. He graduated from Memphis State University and the University of Tennessee Medical units before training in surgery and neurology at the University of Louisville. He completed a residency in Neurosurgery at Duke University. He has practiced in Memphis since 1971 and has written numerous papers and book chapters for the medical literature. He retired from active practice in December 2021 but continues to perform consulting work.
He was in the US Army Reserve and after nine and one-half years, was discharged as a Staff Sergeant. Later he served with the US Navy Reserve for twenty years retiring with the rank of Captain. During that time, he deployed to the Middle East in 1991 during Operation Desert Storm. In 2003, he was activated to the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland during the Global War on Terrorism.
Since 1977, Harry has been a member of the Memphis Belle Memorial Association and later became a member of the Board of Trustees of MBMA whose mission was preserving and restoring the B-17F “Memphis Belle”. He has served as president and currently is the archivist for the association. After the MBMA asked the national Museum of the US Air Force to assume the continuation of the restoration of the “Memphis Belle“, he has continued to work with their restoration division in the ongoing restoration of the “Belle“. He co=authored the book Memphis Belle – Dispelling the Myths.
Dr. Friedman chairs the annual meetings of the B-17 Co-Op, a group which is made up of owners and crew chiefs of currently flying B-17s.
Deborah Lindsay brings a life-long interest in military history to the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force. Her studies of World War I and II have taken her around the world, including all major battlefields and concentration camps. She authored Behind Barbed Wire: A History of Concentration Camps, and is currently writing, Concentration Camps: A Guide to the Official Nazi Camps.
Deborah participates in several history- related organizations including the Atlanta History Center, Atlanta World War II Round Table, Atlanta Civil War Round Table, the Winston Churchill Society of Georgia, the National D-Day Memorial, and the National World War I Museum. She has served as a trustee on the boards of the National World War II Museum, The Center for Civil War History, and the Museum of History and Holocaust Education. She also serves on the Board of America’s National Churchill Museum in Fulton, Missouri, and was inducted as a Churchill Fellow in 2019.
Deborah currently resides in Kennesaw, GA.
Harriet is the owner of Integrated Therapy, LLC. She has been involved in the aquatic physical therapy industry since 1991. She attended Saint Mary’s College in Raleigh, NC, and earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. In addition, she completed the physical therapist assistant program at Gwinnett Technical Institute and she studied aquatic physical therapy techniques in Bad Ragaz, Switzerland. Harriet earned her recognition of advanced proficiency for the physical therapist assistant in musculoskeletal physical therapy. She worked for seven years at the Shepherd Spinal Center. Harriet presents aquatic therapy seminars to healthcare providers, hospitals and fitness organizations with a focus on independence and function for patients with orthopedic and neurological diagnoses and chronic illnesses.
Harriet co-authored Aquatic Exercise Toolbox, which is published by Human Kinetics. She is an active member of the Aquatic Section of the American Physical Therapy Association and served on their board for seven years. The Physical Therapy Association of Georgia awarded Harriet the “Outstanding Physical Therapist Assistant” award in 2004. She was the recipient of the 2003 Fidelity award from the American Red Cross. Harriet was also honored with the 2005 “Women to Watch”; where she was honored by her Junior League peers. Currently Harriet is President of the North Atlanta Young Men’s Service League and on the board of the Collins Food Pantry. She has also served on the board for Peachtree Toad United Methodist Church Pre-School, Paces Neighborhood, and the Junior League of Atlanta, and the National Museum of the Might Eighth Air Force in Savannah, Georgia. She is also the owner of Aquatic Consultants of Georgia, Inc.
Harriet is married with a son and a daughter and lives in Buckhead, Ga.
A native of Rochester, New York, Bill Cathcart retired from WTOC-TV in 2014, after 29-years of service, the last 24 as the station’s Vice-President & General Manager. He received his undergraduate degree from Hope College in Holland, Michigan, followed by his Masters and Ph.D. Degrees from The Ohio State University.
Bill’s Savannah-area community involvement includes past Board Chair of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Forces, where he continues as a Board Member. He is also a long-time member of the Savannah Area Chamber of Commerce Board, where he served as a past-chairman, and is its current Military Affairs Council Chair. He is a Board member of USO Savannah, STARBASE Savannah, and a long-time member of the Rotary Club of Savannah.
Bill is the Honorary Wing Commander of the Georgia Air National Guard’s 165th Airlift Wing here in Savannah, as well as holding honorary member status with Hunter Army Airfield’s 1st of the 75th Rangers; Hunter’s 3rd of the 160th Night Stalkers; and the 3rd Infantry Division’s Combat Aviation Brigade.
In 2013, Bill was selected by the Department of the Army to become the first Civilian Aide to the Secretary of the Army for the Coastal Georgia Region, a position in which he held till 2022.
Bill and his wife Julie live in Savannah, Ga.
Though he was born in Richland, Washington, Jim was raised in Aiken, South Carolina, the state he considers home. He is the son of a World War II Eighth Air Force veteran who served within the 92nd BG, 482nd BG and the 5th Emergency Rescue Squadron.
Jim volunteered for service in the South Carolina Army National Guard, 122nd Combat Engineer Battalion, Company C, from 1969 to 1976 as a Squad Leader Sergeant. During this time, Jim enrolled in the University of South Carolina, graduating from the USC School of Business with a degree in Accounting.
His thirty-four year business career was spent in the railroad industry. Jim held the position of Controller and CFO with the TTX Company/Hamburg Division, North Augusta, South Carolina; Controller and CFO with GOER Manufacturing Company, Charleston, South Carolina; Vice President and CFO with Railcar Management, Inc., Atlanta, Georgia; and he retired from RMI Acquisition Company in 2012 as Senior Vice President and CFO.
Jim’s current and past memberships include the National Association of Accountants, the American Management Association, Sertoma Club and the Atlanta Civil War Roundtable. He is a past president of the USC Gamecock Club, Atlanta Chapter; and the current president of the USC Gamecock Club, Lexington County, South Carolina, Chapter. When not attending college athletic events, Jim pursues a range of hobbies, including coin collections, researching military history, golf and restoring and driving his vintage corvette.
Jim and his wife, Becky, reside on Lake Murray in South Carolina and have four children and nine grandchildren.
J. Ross Greene was born and raised in Knoxville, Tennessee. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Tennessee in 1962. He taught at U.T. while working towards a Masters Degree in Civil/Structural Engineering, where he graduated with honors in 1964. In 1965 he and his wife, Lynne, moved to Georgia where he began his engineering career with Portland Cement Association, teaching advanced structural design concepts to design engineers, as well as completing work for his Professional Engineering License.
His career took a distinct turn when he fell in love with finance and investing. After working as an asset manager at Goodbody/Merrill Lynch and C & S Investment Counselling, he founded an investment consulting firm, Greene Consulting Associates in 1978. In 2018, after forty years, he turned over the reins to his twin sons, David and Dan.
His avid interest in WWII accelerated when in the early 2000’s his cousin, Rosalind, discovered over a thousand wartime letters between her mother and father, 2nd Lt. Ross W. Perrin Jr., a B-17 Bombardier/Navigator. Six of these letters were written, with his mother’s help, by Ross to his “Uncle Bud” for whom he was named. On a mission to Mannheim, Germany on December 11th, 1944, Bud Perrin was killed, 35 days before his daughter, Rosalind, was born.
Using these letters as a roadmap, Ross set off on a six-year odyssey to research and ultimately write a fact-based novel, A Fortress and a Legacy, to “give his cousin the father she never knew”. Research for the book led Ross to the Mighty 8th where he found significant assistance in his quest for specific information. The story combines engaging dialogue and stunning historical accuracy with the pathos of a family torn by war. Further, it captivates readers with its portrayal of the cross-current of personal relationships set against the backdrop of pre-war confusion in the U.S., enlistment, training and execution of B-17 bombing missions over continental Europe late in WWII.
The book has led to speaking engagements with WWII reunion groups, colleges and museums, including th 381st Bomb Group Museum in Ridgwell-UK, the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force and the National WWII Museum. He has written widely in WWOO publications, including “Contrails”, the monthly publication of The Birthplace Chapter of the Eighth Air Force Historical Society.
Ross has served on numerous Christian Board of Trustees including; Worldwide Discipleship Association, Georgia Center for Opportunity and Point University.
Ross and his wife Lynne reside in Peachtree City, Georgia. They have three grown children; David Greene, Dan Greene and Meredith Greene Sorrow. Their families have provided them with eight grandchildren.
Mrs. Harper, a Savannah native, is employed by IQVIA Biotech as an Operational Strategist. She earned her Bachelor’s degree from Furman University and an MBA from the University of South Carolina. In addition to serving as a past co-chair of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force’s Legacy Ball and the MG Wick Searcy Memorial Clay Shoot, Mrs. Harper volunteers for a number of Savannah area not-for-profit organizations. These include the Savannah Tree Foundation, the March of Dimes, Telfair Museums, Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and the Historic Savannah Foundation. She is a member of the Metropolitan Rotary Club and the Downtown Garden Club. Mrs. Harper was named the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Woman of the Year in 2016.
Joey Henslee is Associate General Counsel and Senior Labor, Employments & Compliance Counsel with the Corporate Legal Department for UPS, Inc. in Atlanta, Georgia. In this capacity, his responsibilities include providing legal and business advice and training to the Company’s Human Resources and Labor Relations managers on labor, employment, security, and compliance issues, as well as managing labor and employment-related litigation and addressing employee complaints throughout UPS’s entire U.S. operations. Mr. Henslee’s other areas of substantive responsibility include coordination class action litigation in the wage & hour, disability discriminations, and other employment discrimination areas.
Mr. Henslee graduate, cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa, from the University of South Carolina with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science/Business Administration. He also earned his Master’s Degree in Business and Human Resources from the Darla Moore Graduate School of Business at the University of South Carolina. He is a graduate of the University of South Carolina School of Law, where he was a law clerk to Dennis R. Nolan, Professor of Labor Law.
Mr. Henslee”s passion for learning, history and historical preservation was cultivated by his Anthropologist/Archaeologist mother, as well as his Air Force veteran/amateur genealogist father.
Peter Hoffman is Director of Military and Local Government Affairs at Georgia Southern University, Armstrong Campus in Savannah, GA. Before assuming this position, he was the Director of the Armstrong Liberty Center, a campus that focused on providing educational opportunities to military affiliated students.
Prior to joining Armstrong, Mr. Hoffman spent 30 years in the US Army, retiring as a Colonel. As an Artilleryman he served multiple tours in the 82nd Airborne Division and the 3rd Infantry Division. He also served in various diplomatic capacities during his career, to include attaché duty at embassies in Russia, Bulgaria, and Nigeria. He served on the US Military Delegation to NATO and with the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, performing arms control duties in Russia, Ukraine and throughout Eastern Europe. During Operation Iraqi Freedom, he commanded a joint task force that collected and safeguarded nuclear material and radiological sources.
Mr. Hoffman earned a BA in Political Science from North Georgia College and a Master’s in Public Administration from Cornell University. He attended the Marshall Center for Post Graduate Study in Russian and Eurasian Studies and speaks Russian.
Tom Huff is a 28-year U.S. Navy veteran and naval aviator. He is a graduate of TOPGUN and participated in Operation Desert Storm and Allied Force.
He commanded an operational FA-18 squadron, the U.S. Naval Test Pilot School, and was the Wing Commander accountable for Navy and Marine Corps test programs at Patuxent River, Maryland.
He joined Gulfstream Aerospace in 2012, implementing an Aviation Safety Management System (SMS) and closing all NTSB recommendations following the loss of GVI test airplane and crew in 2011. After leaving Gulfstream in 2023, he joined Empyrean, Inc. as the VP of Aviation Programs.
Mr. Huff earned a degree in engineering from the U.S. Naval Academy, and master’s degree in aviation systems and National Security.
He is a Fellow in the Society of Experimental Test Pilots (SETP), Chairman Emeritus and Executive Director of the Flight Test Safety Committee, former Chairman on the NBAA Safety Committee and current Chairman of the Flight Safety Foundation Business Advisory Committee.
Tom is co-founder of the Savannah Area Aviation Association and resides in Pooler with his wife Terri and their Doberman.
Todd H. Martin is a Principal at M3 Advisors and Martin Financial Group. He is primarily responsible for helping clients preserve their wealth and create income distribution strategies to meet their long term needs and goals. Todd is a Savannah, GA native. He attended the University of Georgia where he earned a BBA in Risk Management and Insurance.
Mr. Martin is the son of Gean Martin, a prior Chairman of the Board for the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force who retired as a Captain in the Air Force. Todd is very passionate about the United States Military and continuing his family’s involvement in the Mighty Eighth Air Force Museum.
Todd is married to Lauren Owens Martin. Todd and Lauren have two small children, Hunter (7) and Haley (4).
Chloe Melas, granddaughter of an Eighth Air Force Veteran, is an entertainment reporter for NBC News, covering all things entertainment, including Hollywood, for the network across platforms.
Before joining NBC, Chloe spent seven years as a reporter for CNN. Prior to this she helped launch HollywoodLife, was the host of VH1’s morning TV show, The Gossip Table.
Chloe is a graduate of Auburn University. She grew up in both Dallas, TX, and Atlanta, GA and currently resides in New York with her husband and two children.
Al was born on the campus of Texas A&M in 1948 and lived in Texas, then Oklahoma, in his early years. At an early age he became enthralled with his father’s service in the Mighty 8th flying with the 100th BG. His father’s POW experiences, especially the long ’45 winter march, were riveting.
Subsequently, Al attended high school and college in Mississippi, graduating from Mississippi State University where he began his engineering career with NASA on the Saturn V launch vehicle. A series of engineering/management opportunities followed in the defense and, ultimately, petroleum industries. This included 11 years in Saudi Arabia and culminated in 30+ years with Exxon/Mobil. During this period Al had his first B17 ride with the CAF’s Texas Raider’s.
AL retired from Exxon/Mobil in 2005 and relocated to Pooler, specifically to volunteer at the Mighty Eighth. Al has conducted numerous tours for adults, students, and VIPs, and participates in special programs, and outreach programs.
Over the past 15 years, the museum’s collections have allowed Al to learn more of the service and sacrifices made by the men of the 8th, including his father. Al is a frequent visitor to his dad’s old base in East Anglia and the crash site in the Czech Republic.
Al is an active board member og the 8th Air Force Historical Society – Birthplace Chapter, as well as an active member of the 100th BG Association.
Al and his wife Louise live in Pooler, Georgia.
Rick Perry served as the fourteenth United States Secretary of Energy from March 2017 to December 2019. As Secretary, he was responsible for successfully executing President Donald J. Trump’s energy agenda and the expansive mission of the Department of Energy (DOE), including maintaining the safety and security of the nation’s nuclear arsenal, protecting the electric grid from cyber threats, ensuring access to reliable and affordable energy, overseeing scientific research and development, and promoting the development and export of American technology and energy all over the world. Under his leadership, the nation ushered in a historic energy era, becoming the number one producer of oil and gas in the world, a world leader in the production and generation of renewable energy, and the dominant global force in Supercomputing, Quantum Computing and Artificial Intelligence.
Prior to joining the Trump Administration, Perry served as the 47th Governor of Texas from 2000-2015. As the longest serving governor of the Lone Star State, he championed conservative pro-growth principles that made Texas the world’s 12th largest economy and the economic envy of America. During his time in Austin, Governor Perry also implemented transformative reforms in the areas of security, criminal justice reform, energy, education, healthcare and the economy.
As Chief Executive both as Governor of Texas and Secretary of Energy, Perry understood that the success of government is only as strong as its partnerships with the private sector. He advocated for smart regulatory reforms and strong public-private partnerships, empowering industry rather that creating more bureaucratic barriers. He started the Texas Enterprise Fund which lured hundreds of hundreds of millions of dollars in private sector business and jobs to Texas. At DOE, he appointed the first ever Chief Commercialization Officer who was tasked with bridging the gap between the world-class R&D at the Department’s 17 National Laboratories and commercialization in the private sector.
Rick Perry is a veteran of the United States Air Force, where he flew a C-130 tactical airlift aircraft in Europe and the Middle East. Throughout his career, he has been deeply involved in supporting both the active duty and veteran community, most recently as an advocate for using the power of Artificial Intelligence (AI) to deliver precision health care to warriors suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), and other conditions.
Perry earned distinction early in his life as an Eagle Scout. He was one of the first in his family to go to college, earning a degree in Animal Science from Texas A&M University, where he was a member of the Corps of Cadets and a Yell Leader. He is a lifetime member of both the NRA and American Legion Post #75.
Perry married his childhood sweetheart, Anita, in 1982. They have two children, two beautiful granddaughters, and a grandson who was born on the 4th of July in 2019.
Ellie Givan “Buck” Shuler III grew up an Air Force “Brat”, the son of Ellie Givan “Buck” Shuler Jr. (Lt. Gen. USAF, Ret.) and Annette Fontaine Maury and literally has lived all over the world.
Buck is a graduate of The Citadel, the Military College of South Carolina. During his junior year Buck was selected for the United States Air Force Undergraduate Pilot Training (UPT) program and signed a contract to enter the Air Force upon graduation. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering.
He completed the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps program, was commissioned as a second lieutenant in May 1984, entering active-duty in October 1984. He completed undergraduate pilot training at Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi, receiving his pilot wings in January 1986. Buck was then assigned to the 7th Bombardment Wing, 9th Bombardment Squadron, Carswell Air Force Base, Texas, as a B-52H pilot. He served with the 7th Bomb Wing as copilot, standardization and evaluation copilot, aircraft commander, instructor pilot and standardization and evaluation instructor aircraft commander. During Operation Desert Shield, Buck’s crew was the lead crew conducting conventional weapons testing to develop methods to facilitate friendly allied armor and infantry advances in penetrating Iraqi defenses. Additionally, he deployed during Operation Desert Storm with the 4300th Provisional Bomb Wing, Diego Garcia, British Indian Oceans Territories.
After completing his active-duty service commitment, Buck transferred to the United States Air Force Reserves as a B-52 Instructor Pilot,.. Concurrent with his service with the Air Force Reserves, in October 1992 he was employed by Owen Steel Company in Columbia SC as a Structural Engineer and Purchasing Agent. Two years later, Buck was selected to become a member of the 317th Airlift Squadron, the Reserves first C-17 Globemaster squadron. He served as a C-17 aircraft commander until May 1998. when he transferred to the South Carolina Air National Guard.
Buck completed initial C-130 Hercules qualification training at Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansas in 1998. In July 2015 Buck became the Chief of Safety for the 145th Airlift Wing, North Carolina Air National Guard at Charlotte, NC. After nearly 34 years of dedicated commissioned service time, Buck retired in April 2018.
Buck is a highly decorated Air Force Command Pilot with more than 6,600 military flying hours, including 272 combat hours and combat support hours flown during Operation Joint Endeavor/Forge, Operation Joint Endeavor, Operation Inherent Resolve and Operation Enduring Freedom. He has been qualified in the T-37B, T-38A, B-52G & H, C-17A, C-130E, C-130H2, WC-130H, and the C-130H3. In July 2017, Buck was hired by United Parcel Service as a MD-11 First Officer. He owns and operates his own general aviation aircraft, a Van’s RB-8.
Buck resides in Hopkins, South Carolina and is married to the former Sharlene Yvonne House and has three sons; William, Matthew and Joseph, a stepson KJ and two stepdaughters, Hannah and Jordyn.