Lt Col Charlie Brown When I retired my entire flight contributed to my farewell/retirement gift. I was speechless when I was called up on stage and presented with a stainless, custom engraved, Springfield Armories 1911. I treasure that gift and it has its own spot on the top shelf of my handguns safe. I enjoy showing it off and returning to the thoughts that it brings of a time when I was privileged to help lead the finest Intelligence flight in the Air Force!
A bell. The kind there used to be at motel check-in desks. My unit went TDY quite a bit, and we had real work to do, so I wasn't very patient at base finance one day while we waited as the finance folks milled around in front of us without coming to the service counter. A few of my lieutenants saw me lose my patience (as a major at the time) and start pounding the bell for service. I still have the bell with 2Lt and 1Lt bars welded on along with a nice quote commemorating my tirade when the finance person finally showed up. I remember being very hungry at the time.
One of the most unique "going away" gifts that I received was when I left NORAD. I received a desk set made out of polished granite from actual granite mined from Cheyenne Mountain. Of course, I have half a dozen signed photo frames from previous commands. Oh yeah, I do have a signed "retirement" appreciation letter from my governor (at the time)...Arnold Schwarzenegger!
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