11/11/09 Petaluma Veteran’s Day Parade viewing

USNA Out meets the Brigade Staff

Petaluma art gallery owners Donna(L)
and USNA Out’s Linda receiving the
Small Business of the Year award from
State Senator Mark Leno.

Last year, 2008 a few USNA Out members collected at the Pelican Art Gallery on a beautiful day in Petaluma to enjoy the annual Veteran’s Day Parade. It is a very sweet event in the San Francisco North Bay that draws veterans and their families from around the Bay Area. USNA Out member Linda Postenrieder and

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Class Reunion Increases Out Membership

The Class of ‘74 held their 35th (OMG!!) Reunion the weekend of October 2-4, 2009 in Annapolis. I was able to meet fellow USNA Outer, Larry Olson and spend some time getting to know more about each other. During the course of the conversation we were able to identify three additional classmates who should be members of our organization. Unfortunately one is posthumous as not everyone survived the worst part of the ongoing AIDS epidemic. The other two are going unnamed until they have a chance to decide whether they would like to join our group or not. One was in attendance and I had the opportunity to talk for a few minutes and we’ve followed up by email since then. It turns out that he dated for a number of years, a man in my condo complex. Even though he often visited the building next to mine, we never knew about each other. I’m reminded regularly that we live in a small world. With the three newly identified gay classmates, ‘74 is behind only the very swishy class of ‘75 as the class of the 70s with the most gay members.

In other respects it was a typical reunion. Cocktail hours where you need name tags to identify who these old strangers are, lots of recounting of old sea stories and laughs, a successful football game against Air Force and a required trip to the Mid Store. For those of you who really miss Bancroft, you could set up your own memorial room complete with an issue bedspread, b-robe, laundry bags, and even that huge safety pin you were issued. I didn’t go that far, but I do now have plebe issue PT gear that I will enjoy wearing to the gym here at home as opposed to when I wore it to PEP with Heinz Lentz at 0630 every morning.

I was somewhat apprehensive about going to the reunion. I am comfortably out and honest if I get asked about my orientation, but I haven’t interacted with classmates very much and had only told one companymate that I stay in contact with. That pleasantly turned out to be a non-event for me. He is now a History Professor at USNA and I was able to sit in on one of his classes which I really enjoyed. I can’t say how it will turn out for you because my experience is limited. I didn’t get asked directly about my situation but I did get the impression it would not be an issue for most of the people I talked to. Another classmate is testing the waters coming out to his companymates and so far they have been very supportive. I think you can expect the same.

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10/4/2009 – Fraudulent “Gay Annapolis Grad” update

Today the Denver Post reported that Rick Glen Strandlof, a former mental patient who posed as a wounded Marine captain and graduate of the US Naval Academy, is being prosecuted under the Stolen Valor Act for making claims he received a Purple Heart.


On June 8th, an article appeared on page 10 of The New York Times about Richard G. Strandlof, who had for months taken on the identity of Rick Duncan, a gay Iraq war veteran who claimed to be a graduate of the U. S. Naval Academy. Has has made other appearances such as on CNN’s “AC360”


Some more basic facts as we knew them:

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10/8 – 10/11/2009 Many USNA Out Members Will Be in DC

Many USNA Out members are coming to the nation’s capital on Columbus Day Weekend — coinciding with the National Equality march and National Coming Day. I have tried to assimilate the plans of events which could be of interest into one schedule (read on below). More information can be found at http://equalityacrossamerica.org/blog/?page_id=19.

Please note that there are three events with “(Rec)” after them. That means Jeff “Recommended.” Those are either events that have proven to be great fun in the past, or are of paramount importance and especially worthy of making a priority in your schedule. It is going to be an extremely busy weekend, and I anticipate that some of the social venues like bars and dance clubs will not be able to accommodate all who wish to enter. Recommend arrival at events on military time — not fashionable (late) time.

I hope that many of you can join us! Go Navy!
Jeff Petrie
USNA ’89


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