Update On Mike Stroop from John Harvilla

I would like to add a few commentss to Terry Sutherland’s eloquent tribute to our classmate Mike Stroop and offer an update on Mike.  First, here is a little background.
I got to know Mike about 8-10 years ago in Huntsville, Al.  ( Mike and I did not know each other during our four years at USNA. )  Mike had somehow found out that I was a USNA graduate and a classmate of his.  He called me and invited me to participate in the activities of the local Huntsville USNA Chapter, which I understand he was instrumental in getting started.  We commenced our friendship then and have continued this friendship through Chapter activities, Army/Navy games, dinner at each other’s homes, etc. Mike graciously invited me to join several of his former work associates ( guys from NASA and contractors he knew from his time with Bendix Corporation) for a weekly Monday morning breakfast at a local, well-know “greasy spoon”.  He also started a similar group that had lunch on Thursdays at another local eatery.  We have regularly (almost religiously) met these two days of the week for the many years now and still do!   We have shared many tales, talked about our families, arguments, political “discussions”, told bad jokes and, more than anything else, have had a boatload of laughs.
So, it was with much sadness for the past year or so to watch Mike slowly slip away from us.  Allthough I believe he still recognizes us and does respond to questions, it is difficult for him to carry on a sustained conversation.  As I said above, we still have our twice-weekly get-togethers.  One of our group will pick him up at Mike’s care facility and I always take him back after our meal.  He still seems to enjoy these meetings and, I think, really looks forward to them.
Since I see Mike every week, I would like to offer myself as a conduit to Mike for anyone wishing to communicate with him.  I also see Mikes son, Mike, Jr., occasionally at a local Lowe’s store, where he is the manager, so I can pass info to him if needed.  My home address, phone number and e-mail address are listed below:
                        John Harvilla
                        1505 Chandler Road
                        Huntsville, Al.  35801
Now I will be out of town for two months starting in about three weeks.  ( My wife Sue and I are embarking from San Francisco for a 60-day cruise to Australia and the South Pacific and back.  I just can’t seem to get enough of this tough sea duty. )   I will have access to the Internet during this time but not my home phone. Please feel free to contact me if anyone wishes.
Hope to see some of you in San Diego next year for our mini-reunion.  As of now, Sue and I are planning to attend.
John Harvilla
Tenth Company

1 comment:

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