315th Air Division "THE AIRLIFTER"
I am in the process of taking requests for copies of Marion L Ray's bound volume of the 315th Air Division newspaper THE AIRLIFTER from May 1966-August 1968. M.L. Ray was a PIO specialist at 315th headquarters in Tachikawa and was the Vietnam editor for the paper during the most intense period of the Vietnam War for American troops. He took hundreds of photographs, the best of which appeared in THE AIRLIFTER. There are hundreds of articles on everything from specific operations to individual awards. While those of us who served in 315th units (all C-130s - and C-123s prior to August 1966 when 834th AD was activated) had access to the paper and no doubt have a copy or two, but this volume contains ALL of them from that period.
M.L. Ray passed away a few years ago and his collection of photographs and this volume now belong to his family, particularly his daughter Samantha Wales, of Mobile, Alabama. Samantha graciously loaned the bound volume to me at the Blind Bat reunion in Biloxi last year to use for research for the revision to my book on C-130 tactical airlift of the pre-1975 time period. I am getting ready to send it back to her, but she has agreed that I can have it copied, and have additional copies made for others who might wish to have one. I am planning to take the book to my local Kinkos on or around September 1 and will have as many copies made as I get requests for. The cost will be somewhere in the vicinity of $50-60.00 for copying, packaging and mailing, depending on what the final order is.
If you would like to have a copy, send a check for $60.00 to me at 3727 Hill Family Lane, Missouri City, TX 77459. I'll hold all checks until I take the book to the printer. When you send it, mention whether or not you would like to have the balance refunded, assuming the cost turns out less than this amount. Otherwise, any difference will go into a fund to set up a Vietnam Airlifters Association and make plans for a reunion, probably in October 2005 in San Antonio.
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