Text: Serge Van Heertum - Pictures: Serge van Oosterzee & Jef Pets - Translation: Marc Arys  © sbap 2015
(Serge van Oosterzee)
 

Melsbroek, homebase of the 15th Transport and Communication Wing, was chosen for our gathering to conclude the season and December 19th was the date set to meet up with everybody for the last time of the year. Another year for your favourite online-magazine which could not have gone so far without the help of our contributors, supporters and readers. 
I would like to comment on some publications we did this year, to emphasize on the author(s) and to thank them by the same way. First of all, a page that buzzed our counters was the commemoration of the passing of Bernard Neefs, presented by Pierre Taquet. An excellent idea and we were the only to have stepped up to the plate (as they use to say). 
Then a wink to Jacques Vincent and Philippe Decock who opened the doors towards the Aeronautica Militare Italiana with various reports such as on the 55 years of the Frecce or on the international exercise Trident Juncture. 
Airplanes, always airplanes, but this time in smaller sizes brought to us by Paul Rorive with his reports on the radio-controlled jet world masters and his new passion, the ULM (Ultra Light Aircraft). 
Another quite intersting report, not directly on airplanes, but regarding the Red Devils who honoured Tchantchès, the citizen from Liège, presented by Alain Debras. 
I would like to emphasize on the team spirit needed in September to cover three main events during the same week-end. The airshow at Lens, done by Bruno Ghils ; Sanicole by Serge Van Oosterzee and Duxford by Danny carels, Marc Arys and myself (Alias the "Duxford bastards"). 
The reports we present on the various museums induce some interest also and the most exotic of 2015 was without any doubt the museum of Hanoï, presented by Timothy Story and his wife Lidwine Do Huu. I can only encourage them to realize some other reports in the same way... SBAP would be nothing without the little nudges and I would like to thank Johnny Devisch for his support at the 15 Wing level and Jef Pets for the facilities at Antwerp or the sharing of his photographs when sometimes we have no one to attend an event. 
Always present although far away, I would like to wink our French correspondent and talented designer, Régis "Rage" Rocca, who always shares his highly colourful reports.
Acknowledgments to all the people who supports us in their own way, Fernando "Booly" Sallese who's help will be needed for his drawings in a future not so far away, David Niemegeerts and Marc Arys for the translations and Stéphane Ghijsen that will take part on works in 2016. Also thanks to those who could not attend this meeting but support SBAP, Virginie Wiacek, Anthony Graulus and Alexander Vandenbohede. Let us not forget the spouses of our contributors who put up with all these escapades. 
I would like to take advantage of this gathering to thank Pierre Taquet for the cordial reception at the Salon du Bourget. This was simply "the place to be"... 
Our thanks also to General Vande Voorde and General Vansina and their collegues of the Air Force headquarters for the facilities granted during our reports on the Belgian Air Force, still the main core of SBAP. 
All this would not be complete without our host of the day, the "historical center Dakota" and I would like to thank Colonel Patrick Mollet (Base Commander) and Major Keersbergen (Security responsible) for having us on their premises. 
Also the Colonel ER René Hoeben and Commandant ER Jos Ackermans for the use of the "Historical Center Dakota" and last but not least, Hubert, our barman for the day who was kind enough to be present instead of going Christmas-shopping... 
A last thank from all the SBAP-members to my wife Danielle, who during all these years takes care of the administration and supports SBAP and, most of all, supports her husband in his tasks or numerous trips. 
During our yearly gathering we always try to have a distinguished guest and this year we welcomed heartily André Richir, former Air Force member, who flew a.o. on the Avro Canada CF-100. 
A special mention goes to Serge Van Oosterzee who is taking care of the IT aspect of our website and is working on a search-engine for our site which will be on-line quite soon. This search-engine will allow you to retrieve more easily a report based upon the author, a photograph or a location. Other ideas are caming up, but, to be followed... 

After the drink and the buffet of which the sweets were made by Vinciane Dewaelheyns, daughter of "Red" of the Red Devils, all the members present gathered in front of the C-47A "Dakota" recently restored and inaugurated, for the traditional picture. Once again a nice way to conclude 2015 and think into the future and reports for 2016.

The SBAP-team and myself wish you an excellent and happy 2016 year and hope our reports will continue to enter your dreams.

 
"Domi", "Papa Switch", "Pierre" and André Richir  (Serge van Oosterzee) "jef" and "Turbo"  (Serge van Oosterzee)
"Tweety" and "Tomcatter"  (Serge van Oosterzee) A part of the "Duxford Bastards"  (Serge van Oosterzee)
The boss and his secretary  (Serge van Oosterzee) "Tim", "Lidwine" and "Wendy"  (Serge van Oosterzee)
Time for a little speech (Serge van Oosterzee) "Pierre", "André", "Paul" and "Anny" (Serge van Oosterzee)
"Visch", "SO6", "Booly" and "Viny"  (Serge van Oosterzee) Thank you "Paul" for your little word !  (Serge van Oosterzee)
Standing buffet  (Jef Pets) (Jef Pets)
SBAP Cupcakes...  (Jef Pets) ...and a great "Fougacake" made by Vincianne (Jef Pets)
"Severine, "Carine", "Flea", "Anne" and "Tim"  (Jef Pets) (Jef Pets)
(Jef Pets) "GeeBee", "Boucak" and "SO6" at buffet  (Jef Pets)
(Jef Pets) "Wall-E" and "Pierre" talking with "Aurélie" about space experience
(Jef Pets)
A walk in the Historical center  (Serge van Oosterzee) The C-119G dashboard (Serge van Oosterzee)
(Serge van Oosterzee) (Serge van Oosterzee)
(Serge van Oosterzee) The center is always looking for new historic items (Jef Pets)
With the wifes (Serge van Oosterzee) (Serge van Oosterzee)
Fairchild C-119G (Serge van Oosterzee) The Pembroke RM7 (Serge van Oosterzee)
Freshly restaured, the magnificent "Dakota" (Jef Pets) (Jef Pets)
(Serge van Oosterzee) (Serge van Oosterzee)
The Flying Boxcar CP10 (Serge van Oosterzee)
The exposed material highlights the ancestors (Serge van Oosterzee) Mobile Control tower (Jef Pets)
(Jef Pets) (Jef Pets)
(Jef Pets) (Jef Pets)
"Visch", "Paul", "Pierre", "Tomcatter", "Turbo", "SO6", "Papa Switch", "Boucak", "Tweety", "Viny", "GeeBee", "Wall-E" and André Richir
(Severine van Oosterzee)
  
  

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