Tampa Chapter

Sons of the American Revolution

Meeting Notice and News, October 2011



          Our next meeting will be held on October 15th in the private meeting room of the Piccadilly Cafeteria, located at 11810 Dale Mabry Highway North, Tampa, Florida (813-963-1660). Meetings begin at noon but members arrive as early as 11:30 for a time of camaraderie.

We will be awarding our annual Law enforcement this month to Detective Ronald "Dillon" Corr.  He has been employed with the Hillsborough Sheriff's Office since October 2003.  From 2006-2009 Detective Corr was assigned as a detective working construction and metal theft investigations where he has become an "expert" on these types of cases.  He has been assigned to District IV Investigations and Community Service since 2009.  In 2007, Detective Corr co-founded the Copper Theft Intelligence Unit which is a multi-jurisdictional group that tracks metal theft trends statewide.  This group meets on a quarterly basis and due to the active sharing of intelligence it has solved multiple metal theft crimes within Hillsborough County and throughout the State of Florida.  Detective Corr has also taken an active role in training law enforcement officers on how to successfully charge individuals involved in the theft of metals.  He is currently a Field Training Officer.

There are several very important items we need to bring to everyone’s attention.  They are explained below.  Thanks for taking the time to look them over.




Bob Yarnell

Vice President, Tampa Chapter


IMPORTANT NOTICE REGARDING OCT. MEETING.   As decided by the officers in August, the format for the October meeting will be changed.  We will have usual introductory proceedings and then proceed directly to awarding the law enforcement medal.  Det. Corr will then speak for 15-20 min. after which we will have a brief question and answer period.  We will then adjourn for lunch.  This will allow Det. Corr to leave if he needs to although I assume he will stay for lunch.  After lunch we will have an expanded business meeting to finalize some things mentioned last month and bring some others to the attention of the members.


Chapter Website—always remember you can find information about the chapter and program on the chapter website.  http://www.patriot-web.com/




Pictures from the Sept. meeting.  Pres. L Lloyd awarding membership certificates, military service medals and supplemental certificates.




Florida SAR Board of Management Meetings

For those interested, the Fall Florida SAR Board of Management meeting will be held October 21st and 22nd in Kissimmee. You can find information regarding registration at www.flssar.org.  


ROTC Reminder

As was mentioned in last month’s newsletter and as explained/discussed at the May and Sept. Meetings, Jack Bolen has agreed to take over coordinating the ROTC program.  The way we will be handling it will be for members to take “ownership” of one or more schools.  What you would be expected to do is contact the ranking senior ROTC instructor, introduce yourself and let that person know you will be the contact with the SAR.  You would be responsible for letting them know about the April luncheon meeting, sending periodic reminders so they remember to chose a recipient and finding out when they will be holding their spring awards ceremony.  You would not be required or expected to attend the awards ceremony.  While that might be nice and we would encourage it, we will handle that part as we always have, getting a list of when and where the awards ceremonies are and having members go to those that fit their schedules in May. 

Please consider helping with this.    Again, this will not take much of your time but we cannot allow this program to end.   Jack Bolen and Bob Yarnell would be happy to answer any questions or deal with any concerns you have.  They only way we will be able to continue this program is with the help and cooperation of the entire membership.  Please help.  Below the list of schools is a brief history of what happened when the chapter dropped the ball on the ROTC program in the mid 90’s









East Bay




Lithia/Fish Hawk


Plant City

Plant City



Plant City











So. County Ctr.

























Temple Terrace





Tampa Bay Tech
























H.B. Plant










New Tampa



New Tampa















Lest we repeat history


A majority of our members are likely unaware of a previous time in our chapter’s history when the ROTC program was nearly dropped. Philosopher George Santayana is given credit for reminding us that “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” Perhaps lessons learned at that time can be instructive for us now.


As you may know there are a significant number of schools with JROTC units in our area.  In the early, mid-90’s, the task of attending all the ceremonies to present the awards had become more than one or two people could do. Further, the chapter didn’t seem to be getting much in return from the schools in the way of publicity or exposure regarding the SAR organization. So thinking that the program was more trouble than it was worth, the chapter president, George Brookes, proposed a new format. The details of the proposal aren’t especially important at this point. His idea clearly had merits but was not well received by the Florida Society. Thus the Tampa Chapter was left with two bad options: drop the program altogether or proceed with the new format and risk the wrath of our parent society.


The resolution of the dilemma took some time during which some hurt feelings both at the state and local level were healed. What evolved was the format you likely have experienced in the past years where we put most of our efforts into the April ROTC Luncheon and secondarily make the presentations at the local unit awards ceremonies. For the first few years, we were able to be present at only a very few unit events. As time passed, other members saw the benefits of this part of the program and offered to help. The luncheon too started rather small with just four cadets attending the first year. The packed room at our last April Luncheon speaks to the growth of this aspect of our ROTC efforts.


Coordinating the luncheon and communication with the high school units fell to our former secretary, Kevin Yarnell. Dwight Tetrick took over all the work for the units at the local universities. The task, while significant, was made easier over time as both built relationships with the commanders. With Kevin currently attending seminary in Boston, the high school unit work must necessarily fall to others in the chapter. So we find ourselves in a similar situation to that described earlier – the program will die without the help of the membership.  And, while the state organization may not respond as negatively as it did earlier, we need to be cognizant of the reaction of the state organization to drastic reduction or drop in the program


How nice it would be if enough volunteers, each shouldering a small part of the load, could prevent the program from the decline it experienced in the mid-1990’s.




Below is the tentative program schedule for the 2011-2012 year.  As always send along any suggestions for speakers.


Oct.   Law Enforcement award Detective Ronald "Dillon" Corr

Nov.   David Boyett.   Topic: Genetic Genealogy - Understanding your DNA     Genealogy and DNA

Dec.   CAR and Oratorical Entrant

Jan.   TBA—Hopefully a state officer

Feb.   Mr. Bob O’Donnell, adjunct prof. of History at St. Petersburg College: Blacks in the Revolution

March          Fire/EMT award

April  ROTC—speaker TBA

May   Tentative—Speaker from Armed Forces Museum in Largo


Nominations Committee Report


Jack Bolen and Robert Yarnell were appt. to serve on the nominating committee.  Elections will be held, as usual, in November.  At that time the nominating committee will present their slate.  The floor will then be opened for nominations from the floor.  For any contested position a secret ballot election will be held.  The votes will counted by the Treasurer and VP.

Below is the list of offices that need filled.  Those that have people who have agreed to serve have those names beside the office.  Those offices which do not have anyone yet are vacant.  Please consider running/accepting one of these positions.

 Constitutional offices requiring election:

President ----------– John Skillman

V. Pres-----------------Robert Yarnell


Treasurer-------------Chuck Copeland

Registrar--------------Alan Bell

Chaplain--------------Jack Bolen

Newsletter editor – Robert Yarnell

Website editor-------Kevin Yarnell

At Large members of Board of Governors (2) ---


Non-Constitutional Officers

Sgt. At Arms – John Sessums

Historian-------- Robert Yarnell


So, we need a secretary and two members who would be willing to serve on the Chapter Board of Governors when it meets.  Again, anybody wanting to run for any of the offices can contact Bob or Jack or have your name placed in nomination from the floor at the November meeting.


Secretary idea.

The following suggestion comes from Kevin.

“One last thought on the secretary dilemma - it dawns on me that it would be rather easy for me to continue to handle the membership side of the secretaries job. You're (Bob Yarnell) taking care of the newsletter, Chuck (Copeland) will be doing the annual report, and someone will be taking the minutes. What's left is just transfers and the like which is neither a problem nor time consuming. The point is it might be possible to elect a secretary to take the minutes and "coordinate" the other duties. In other words, they'd deal directly only with the minutes and everything else would get done by others. “

Hopefully, this will ease someone’s concerns concerning the work load.



Be it known that after the December meeting, the VP will no longer take the minutes of the meeting.  If there is no secretary in January there will be no minutes of the meetings.  This is, of course, unacceptable.  We must have a secretary. 


Chaplain.  Jack wishes it to be known that he is willing to continue but has no objection if some one else would like to take over the Chaplain’s duties.



Due to the small size of our chapter we have never found the necessity of have standing committees.  However, as the chapter is growing we need to look at these again. According to the Constitution, we are to have 6.  They are listed below.  If anyone is interested in serving on these committees, again, let that wish be known in November so you can be placed on it in the spring.


Membership committee—duties currently done by the registrar

Program Committee------ duties currently performed by VP.  Bob Yarnell wishes it to be known he will serve as chairman of the program committee if someone else

                                                                 wants to run for Vice-President and is reluctant to do so due to the current requirement that the VP is in charge of programs.

Publicity committee--------in the past we have never had a publicity committee although on occasion, individuals have tried to generate publicity for the Chapter.

                                      This would be a wonderful place for several people with an interest in this to “pick up the ball” so to speak.  Pres. Lloyd made a

                                      point of the necessity for this at the Sept. meeting.

Medals and awards-------This has been handled primarily by Luke Lloyd over the past two years with assistance from Bob Yarnell and John Skillman

Special events--------------The Chapter has very few activities that could be called “special events”.  The closest thing would be the picnics we have had in the

                                      past.  When needed in the past, ad hoc committees have been created for this or that particular function

Rumbaugh Oratorical Contest---The Chapter has rarely participated in the oratorical contest.  Much like the essay contest, when it has been tried

                                                In the past it has ever panned out due to lack of participation.



The Veterans’ Legacy Archives is a local organization founded by (ret.) Congressman Bilirakis.  The Archives are housed at the library on the Tarpon Springs Campus of St. Petersburg College.  The goal of the archives is to preserve the stories and experiences of veterans of America’s wars.  The specific goal at the moment is to concentrate on WWII and Korean War veterans.  The archives consist of video taped interviews and presentations, documents provided by veterans and fact sheets about veterans.  If any one in the chapter knows of a WWII or Korean War veteran who might be interested in sharing his story, please contact Bob Yarnell.  It can be as simple as filling out a fact sheet or, if the veteran is willing, being interviewed and that interview turned into a narrative by a trained person.  Or even making a 30 min presentation to one of the college’s history classes and responding to students questions and allowing that presentation to be videotaped for future students and interested persons to view.  Again, more details available from Bob Yarnell




I have no doubt there are some errors in the minutes below.  If your name is omitted or misspelled, it is unintentional.  Let me know and I will have it corrected prior to the meeting on the 15th. Likewise if there are any notable or glaring omissions bring them to my attention, they too, are unintentional.   Bob Y



Minutes of the Sept. 17, 2011 meeting of the Tampa Chapter SAR


President Luke Lloyd called the meeting to order at 12:00. .


Chuck Hawley led the Pledge of Allegiance and Pres. Lloyd led the SAR Pledge.


Members present: Luke Lloyd, Marty Miller, Alan, Bell, Dick Young, John Sessums, Ed Neugaard, Leo Kelly, Gray Reese, Chuck Hawley, David McCallister, Terrell Sessums, Paul Farley, Robert Yarnell, Milt Alexander, Robbins Denham, Ira Ward


Welcome guests:

Wives:  Lisitte Young, Nora Sessums, Jean Lloyd

Other guests: Glenn Clepper, Greg Tilsdale, Paul Ergler, Royall Brown, The Honorable E J Salcines


The President introduced the guests.


Pres. Lloyd then awarded the following:

          Leo Kelly – Military service medal

          Robbins Denham---new member

          Gray Reese ---two supplementals


The regular order of the meeting was adjusted by the President


The Chapter adjourned for lunch at 12:15


Terrell Sessums introduced the Honorable E J Salcines.  Among the positions he has held over the past several decades include ass’t state attorney, ass’t U S attorney for Central Florida ands serving on the 2nd Court of Appeals.  He was educated at Florida Southern College and Stetson Law School.


His presentation was entitled “Spain, the Forgotten Ally”.   He detailed the impact of Spain’s involvement in the American Revolution. Included was the emphasis on the war as a world war, once France and Spain entered and the “what ifs” for Florida and the Gulf Coast had Spain not entered the war.   He spent considerable time explaining the importance of Bernardo de Gálvez in this regard. 


The talk was very interesting and enjoyed by the membership.


Following some questions the President presented Mr. Salcines with a certificate of appreciation.


The minutes of the May meeting were approved.  


The Treasurer was absent due to illness so there was no treasurer’s report.


The vice-president related notes from members that were unable to attend the meeting.  Since Jack Bolen was absent, Bob Yarnell also explained the new way we were going to handle the ROTC program.


Alan Bell gave the registrars report.  There are two applications approved, three more that should be approved by Jan. and over half a dozen supplementals in the works or close to being approved.  He also reported the Color Guard marched in the Lutz parade in July and is planning on being a part of the Wounded Warriors ceremony in Nov.


Luke informed the membership of the plans to work a table at the Fla. Genealogy Conference on Oct. 1st.  A report will be made at the Oct. meeting as to its success.


Vice President Bob Yarnell gave the report of the nominating committee with special emphasis on the need for a secretary and an explaining  the duties of the office.


Pres. Luke Lloyd then summarized all of the issues and concerns facing the chapter:  the need for a secretary, the need for people to step up and participate in the ROTC program, the need to have people try to attend the Fla. BOM meetings and the need for people to work on publicity for the Chapter.


He also mentioned the Chapter Challenge and that members of the chapter should inform the (secretary when we get one) or for now the Pres. if they know of any of the criteria we have met over the past year.


He also mentioned Operation Helping Hand, a visitation program at the V A hospital.  Operation Helping Hand (OHH) is a local program begun in 2004 to help the wounded and their families who are at James A. Haley VA Hospital in Tampa.  The third Thursday evening of each month at 6 p.m., the OHH Committee has a catered supper for these folks in the dining room area of the Spinal Care Clinic.  Anyone can attend and interact with these families.  SAR members are encouraged to attend.


Chuck Hawley won the 50/50 and donated his share to the treasury.  The treasury was thus enriched by $21.00.


The President led the recessional, Dick Young gave the benediction, and the meeting adjourned at  2:20..


Respectfully submitted,


Robert Yarnell, Vice President and

(very) temporary Secretary