The Old Guard

The Old Guard is a group of retired and semi-retired men dedicated to education, fellowship and community service. Weekly meetings feature guest speakers from government, education and business. Opportunities for fellowship include informal gathering before the meetings, excursions and athletic events, bowling, golf and luncheons. Committee chairmen work with civic groups to organize opportunities for member contributions, both financial and donation of time,some periodic, some ongoing. Old Guard members work with Meals on Wheels, Habitat for Humanity, Foodshare, Salvation Army, the West Hartford YMCA and the University of Connecticut Medical Center. Old Guard members provided leadership in the revitalization and ongoing administration of the West Hartford Seniors Job Bank.

Times are different.  In normal times, (for 55 years) the Old Guard has met weekly on Tuesdays from September through May. But, during this time, meetings are being held virtually twice a month.  Through the magic of video conferencing, it has been possible to enjoy guest presentations from here, around the country and even the world. A diverse lineup of speakers has participated this season including:

West Hartford Town historian – Tracey Wilson, “Slavery and Freedom in West Hartford”

Gerontologist – Ruth Mitman, “Driving Miss Ruth: Staying Safe on the Road”

YMCA President –  Harold Sparrow, “The YMCA and the Pandemic”

Hartford Yard Goats – Tim Restall, “Professional Baseball in Hartford”

Hartford Seminary – Joel Lohr, President “Hartford Seminary – Mission and History”

Frequent visitor to America – Peter Varden, “A Stranger in a Strange Land”

Epidemiologist – Dr. Ruvim Izikson, “Development of Corona Virus Vaccines”

Tax specialist – Andrew Lattimer, “Changes in the Tax Code”

Baseball scout – Rob Metzler, Tampa Bay Rays “Professional Baseball Scouting”

Election law – Douglas Spencer, UConn Law, “Election Law – What Just Happened?”

Gregory Smith, President and CEO, Connecticut Lottery

Genetics and Mice - Nadia Rosenthal, Ph.D., Jackson Labs "Genetic Research and COVID"

Old Guard Officers 

Ron Van Winkle - President

860 558-2794 (cel)

Don Kauke- Vice President

George Stephan - Secretary

Kevin Slane - Assistant Secretary

Stephen Guest - Treasurer

Paul Dean - Assistant Treasurer

Membership Information

Ron Robinson -

January Newsletter

Happy New Year

“Stay Positive and Test Negative”

President’s Message

I am writing today to notify you that at the regular meeting on January 5th you will be asked to vote via Zoom on the following two matters:

1.  The election of Don Kauke as vice president to fill the vacancy created by Dick Moffitt's resignation due to health reasons.  Don was chosen pursuant to the usual nominating process, and the Board recommends that he be elected to fill the vacancy for Dick's unexpired term; and

2.  The Board also recommends the approval of an amendment to the Bylaws to allow the Board to fill an officer vacancy (other than president) occurring during the year for the unexpired term of that officer.  While the Bylaws provide that the vice president shall fill a vacancy in the president's office, they do not address the vacancies that could occur in several of the other offices, including that of vice president.  The amendment would cure that deficiency and remove the need to call a meeting of members to fill them.

If you have any questions regarding these proposals, please feel free to contact me or George Stephan

Ron Van Winkle - President

Sad Member News

We are again mourning the passing of another former Old Guard member.  Edwin M. Dahill, Jr.  passed on December 7th at the age of 101.  Ed was the longest serving member of the Old Guard having joined in 1985.  He was a graduate of Georgetown University and attended Yale Law School but when Pearl Harbor was attacked, he enlisted and served out the war in the European theatre.  After the war, he worked at G. Fox, became Principal of Canton High School, received a Doctorate in Education from Columbia University but spent the most of his career as a professor at Central Connecticut State University.

During the calendar year 2020 the following 14 members of the Old Guard passed:

Joseph H. Cobrain,  1/26/2020

John E. Davidson, 2/9/2020

James B. Lyon, 2/11/2020

Robert E. Carroll. Jr. 2/12/2020

William O. Newman, 3/25/2020

Gerald O. Thompkins, 4/13/2020

Richard Brown, 5/22/2020

David W. Jackson, 9/26/2020

Thomas E. Desmond, 10/20/2020

Ernest Carl Wignall, 10/20/2020

Richard Scoville Krissinger, 11/6/2020

J. Morton Dunn, 11/10/2020

Eugene Knorr, Jr., 11/25/2020

Edwin M. Dahill, 12/6/2020

Nominating Committee

The Nominating Committee sent me the following recommendation:

Report of the 2020 Special Nominating Committee

Upon the resignation of Vice President Dick Moffittt, President Ron Van Winkle asked for a Special Nominating Committee to recommend a member to fill the unexpired term.  As prescribed in the By Laws, Bob Schaefer assembled a Committee of members of Tom Goodrum, Dale Richter, Tew Dubois, and Mike Feehan to fill the vacated position.

The Old Guard has an abundance of talented members with leadership skills and experience.  Our task was to select a member to serve as Vice President for the balance of the 2020-2021 program year who could potentially advance into the role of President for the 2020-2021 program year.

The Committee nominates Donald E. Kauke, who has been a member since 2008 and who has served on the Old Guard Board for many years.


Bob Schaefer, Chair 2020-2021 Nominating Committee

December 6, 2020

The nomination will be presented to the membership at our January 5, 2021 regular meeting for a vote via Zoom.

Senior Job Bank

Hank Boulton Chairman,

Each month I have been recognizing Old Guard members that have made significant contributions to the operations of the Seniors Job Bank. Dennis Carrithers, now living in Maine, was an active Old Guard member and Officer/Secretary. Dennis was also a huge supporter of the Seniors Job Bank. While President (for 3 years), Dennis took on the responsibility of guiding the Seniors Job Bank to a meaningful, sustainable future by spearheading the development and putting into action a sound Strategic Plan. In addition to many other contributions, Dennis was deeply involved with getting community recognition for the 40th anniversary of the Seniors Job Bank which was topped off with an event at the Governor’s Residence. We wish Dennis well in his new community


Don Kauke

The Old Guard has held successful and convenient annual flu vaccine clinics for years. We will investigate the possibility of conducting a clinic for the administration of the COVID vaccine. As you are aware, the first round would be for those age 75 and over. More information when we determine your interest.

The Old Guard web page ( continues to provide information about organization activities. Our page is for updates for members and to provide information to prospective members.

You will find on our Home page a button to make a contribution to the Salvation Army. In addition,  recent Old Guard presenters are saved for two weeks on our Members Only section of the Other Information page. You can access by using password.

West Hartford Food Bank

Lou Aiello - Chairman

We are in a huge struggle for monetary donations for the needy, we will be collecting money and/or food for the West Hartford Food Bank, Foodshare and/or Loaves & Fishes. We received contributions of 400 food items and $29,000 in food value. This year there is more need than ever for contributions than past years. We have to preserve, protect, and help our community with the changes going on in our world, and have the Old Guard out in front as a top contributor to support our community. The need is greater than ever. WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT. Our goal this year is to help as much as we are able for with our contributions, we are helping others in their time of need(s)! A contribution of $30.00 would feed one person for 30 days with the organization cost. We could donate money to West Hartford Food Bank and/or Foodshare: Greater Hartford & Tolland County; also Loaves & Fishes.

  1. For collecting non-perishable food will be for the West Hartford Food Pantry.

  2. To contribute by check for West Hartford: Paid to the order of -Town That Cares-West Hartford Food Pantry, 50 South Main Street, West Hartford, CT 06107, and for Foodshare: Paid to the order of Foodshare, 450 Woodland Street, Bloomfield, CT, 06002 or Loaves & Fishes Ministries, 646 Prospect Avenue, Hartford, CT, 06105

  3. To contribute by charge card: West Hartford FoodBank, visit and click on Donate Now. Foodshare (860) 286-9999 or And for Loaves & Fishes (860)524-1730 Alice Hild 64 Prospect Ave., Hartford, Ct. 06105. Let me know if you contribute by charge, so I can add contribution to our total. All donations are tax deductible. Any questions call me (860) 970-6502.


Ron Robinson - Chairman

Good Morning Old Guard and Happy New Year! The New Year is often a time for reflections and resolutions, so I am going to ask all of us to do both: Reflect on everything the Old Guard has meant to you – Fellowship & Service in their many different forms – camaraderie, meetings, speakers, trips, ball games, golf, bowling, YMCA kids, Meals on Wheels, Habitat, UCONN Health Center, Foodshare, Seniors Job Bank, Salvation Army and so much more!

Resolve to attend more meetings (via ZOOM), invite members you have not seen as well as prospective members so they, too, might benefit and let me know how I might help.

Thank you.

Ron Robinson, Membership Chair, (860)965-3510

Meetings and Speakers

We are always looking for good speakers especially this year with our Zoom meetings.  Although most of the spots for the rest of the year are filled, if you have a suggestion please contact: Ron Van Winkle at

During our last meeting someone asked a question about Roth IRAs that our speaker was going to check on.  His response is “The newly passed 10 year distribution rule does apply to inherited Roth IRAs as well as traditional IRAs.”.

January 5th  Zoom Meeting

Speaker:  Rob Metzler,

Director of Amateur Scouting for the Tampa Bay Rays

Introduced by:  Rob Metzler, father


January 19th Zoom Meeting

Speaker:  Douglas Spencer, Professor UConn Law School

Election Law - What Just Happened

Introduced by:  Ed Turbert


Special Events Report

Paul Dean, Chairman

A Reminder:  Paul Dean is offering a special bargain purchase of Old Guard memorabilia including the Old Guard hat, lapel pin and auto magnet (also good for your refrigerator) all for a mere $20.  You know your lapel pin is somewhere in that chest of drawers, it's time to give up searching and get a new one. Contact Paul at 860-521-0955 or email him at  He delivers!

Salvation Army

Ed Turbert - Chairman

Thanks to the forty Bell Ringers on those cold December days.  You did a great job for the Salvation Army.

And Thanks to all of you who have donated so far to the “Virtual Red Kettle.”  If you have not yet done so, please give the Old Guard Virtual Red Kettle at try .  Use the link below to make a contribution and people in Harford will bless you for your goodness.  They may not know your name, but God will know!  There are 40 members who  have already done so.

Thank you, Ed

December Birthdays                    

We send Happy Birthday wishes to all those who have a birthday in January.

Nineteen birthday wishes.

Happy Birthday Guys

David Krugman              Francis Archambault      George Kirkutis

Ed Murphy                     Courtney Bourns            Bob Cave

Fred Sargeant                 Jack Blechner                 Bob Fisher

Ken Hungerford             Loren Godfrey                Dave Wadhams

Bernie Weiss                  Ed Vipler                         Tom Chrosniak

Donald Clark                  Frank Wildt                     Bill Hewett

William Macauley

Old Guard Information Request

Please complete the following and our Membership Chair will get back to you



Retired and semi-retired


Meetings &


Meet weekly on Tuesday mornings at 10:25 A.M., September-May

(current meeting Virtually via Zoom)



Social activities include trips, golf, bowling, UConn sports, Yard Goats games



Members support local non-profits with participation and leadership



Some additional information and contact details