Both Susan and Darren are retired military. If I went through the Ft. Sam Houston base gate in the car with them, I wouldn't have to go through the base Visitor Center and do a 1/2- to 3/4-hour background check.
Anyway, arrangements were made to meet Tuesday and do the walk then. Meanwhile, since they were already there, they decided to go ahead and walk. They later told me it wasn't a very good walk -- it was hot, humid and the directions were confusing. They got lost quite a bit.
Fast forward to Tuesday...they picked me up at the RV park office and we zipped onto base with no problem. That's how easy it is when you ride with two retired officers: one Army, one Air Force.
The 10k Volksmarch started at the IHG Hotel on base. The first mile or two we walked next to the Parade Ground and passed the 1941 Eisenhower Quarters (where Colonel and Mrs. Dwight Eisenhower lived in 1941) and Krueger Quarters (Walter Krueger, commander of 2d Infantry Division and Third U.S. Army here, and Sixth U.S. Army during the Pacific Campaign during WW II lived here in 1939-1941). Talk about a who's who of historic military personnel.
|Eisenhower Quarters (1941)|
This facility was designated the Foulois House in 1981 in honor of Benjamin Foulois, pioneer military aviator. Military aviation was born March 2, 1910 when Lt. Foulois made the first military flight at Ft. Sam Houston in Army Aircraft No. 1. He enlisted as an engineer in the war with Spain and was commissioned for gallantry in the Philippines. He commanded air service troops and was Chief of Air Services AEF in 1917. He was the sixth person named to the National Aviation Hall of Fame as the first Air Corps Pilot.
MG Foulois retired as Chief of the Air Corps and lived to see his Air Service become the mighty USAF, and his one-hundred-foot altitude flight of 1910 expand to outer space. What a life!
|Foulois House (Quarters named in honor of Benjamin Foulois)|
|MG Foulois Quarters 1910-1911|
|General Pershing's Quarters|
|More walking along parade grounds|
|Darren and Susan - happy walkers today|
|M-48 Medium Tank, 90 MM "Patton"|
|Another view of the M-48 Medium Tank, 90 MM "Patton"|
|Entrance to The Quadrangle|
Here's why this enclosed quadrangle was my favorite part of the walk...I fell in love with the peacocks!
|A strutting peacock|
|The colors are awesome|
This place is just amazing. In addition to the landscaping, peacocks, ducks, geese and deer, there is a beautiful tower.
The Tower is 90 feet tall and measures 16 feet square at the base. It was built to hold a water tank and a watchman's station at the 60-foot level.
|Cannons have been displayed |
at the Tower since 1895.
|In 1882 a clock replaced the water tank|
|One more peacock|
We made our way back toward the start. Darren and Susan wanted to see the Army Medical Department (AMEDD) Museum. (Bob and I had already toured it.) We spent 45 minutes in the lovely air-conditioned building learning about the part the Army Medical Department has played throughout U.S. History.
Many different types of vehicles have been used to transport wounded soldiers from the battlefield. Here are a few of them. I bet you've never seen the last one before!
|Model T Ford Ambulance|
|1942 Willys MB (jeep)|
|Gemule: Litter carrier, ground (experimental)|
After the walk, we ate lunch at Freddy's Steakhouse. Darren and Susan wanted to see "Tomorrowland" which Bob and I had already seen. I opted to see "Far from the Madding Crowd." Darren and Susan enjoyed "Tomorrowland." I thought "Far from the Madding Crowd" was a good period piece. The best part about it was Carey Mulligan. I loved her character and the way she portrayed her, although she was quite stupid in her choice of husband. I agree with the critics on this one, the audience knew who would make the best match for her long before she figured it out. It got quite tedious toward the end.
This was a great day with friends. I learned a lot about the military doing this walk with two retired officers. Travel Bug out.