Coffee and Conversation with Gary Kling

2nd and 4th Saturdays – 10 a.m.

The Broomfield Veterans Museum invites you to join us for Coffee and Conversation, where you can enjoy coffee, donuts, networking and a great presentation by a veteran or historian. In an informal setting, our Coffee and Conversation events provide museum visitors with an opportunity to listen to the stories of service and sacrifice, ask questions of our speakers and other veterans, see short videos and discuss the broader context of their experiences. Coffee and Conversation events in 2021 begin at 10 a.m. on the 2nd and 4th Saturdays each month.

Watch the Livestream

The museum is open and hosting Coffee and Conversation events in a safe and socially distanced manner. However, if you prefer to watch from home, we invite you to tune in via our YouTube livestream.

Upcoming Events

22 January – Gail Beaton will give a Chautauqua-style presentation as “Gail Murphy,” drawn from the records and memories of WWII women war workers. Her story reveals women’s war work, the home front, and the changes in roles and expectations of women during World War II. Gail has taught for more than 30 years in Colorado public schools at the elementary, middle, and high school levels, and as a community college instructor. She is the author of Colorado Women: A History and Colorado Women in WWII.

12 February – Doug Nunes is a US Army veteran and will tell the story of his father, Harold O. Miller, who was a P-47 Thunderbolt pilot in Europe during WWII. Doug will use his father’s own words, interview recordings, and gun camera footage to tell the story of his missions. On one mission in July 1944, he was credited with possibly the wounding of Field Marshall Erwin Rommel, removing him from the Normandy Front just days after D-Day.

26 February – Dr. Lauren Ball will share his multiple experiences in different branches of the Army over a 24 year and 8 month career, raising from the ranks of Private to Sergeant First Class (E-7) and then becoming a warrant officer. Lauren was raised on a ranch during the Great Depression of 1929 in a four-room house, 20 miles southwest of Durango. Becoming disenchanted with the never-ending chores of farm work, Lauren joined the US Army in December 1945. Over the next 24 years he served with Armor, Artillery, Air Defense and Signal units in the U.S., Germany and Vietnam. A case of mumps kept him from being sent to Korea in 1951. In 1946 he was assigned as a guard for the War Crimes Trials in Dachau, Germany. When Lauren retired from the Army, he decided to get a degree as a doctor of Chiropractic and followed that practice for 37 years in Trinidad, Colorado. He will review this and other interesting topics for his talk.

12 March – Bill Bates joined Army in the spring of 1967 and received Primary Helicopter training at Fort Wolters, TX followed by Advance Flight training at Hunter Army Airfield, GA. Upon completion Bill was commissioned as a Warrant Officer. He arrived in Vietnam in the Spring of 1968, assigned to the 7/17 AirCav. This unit supported the 4th Infantry Division at Camp Enari, near Pleiku in the central highlands. Bill flew “B” model gunships for about a month before volunteering for the Scout platoon. Scouts provided recon intelligence on path usage, estimated troop size, bunker and camp usage along with close air support. Bill averaged 120-140 combat hours a month and was shot down 3 times due to enemy fire.

19 March – Tim Hutchinson is the Broomfield Veterans Service Officer will provide a quarterly update to the VA claims process, the new appeals program, and changes resulting from Covid-19. Tim is a Navy veteran having served aboard the aircraft carrier U.S.S. Midway, attached to the US Navy 7th Fleet, from July 1984 to April 1988.

26 March – Bob Grow served in the U.S. Air Force for 22 years in multiple challenging assignments. He graduated in 1967, the ninth class of the newly formed U.S. Air Force Academy. He subsequently trained as navigator and bombardier and flew for 10 years on F4E Phantom jets in Laos, England, Eglin AFB and Spain. During 1970-71 he served as a “Tiger FAC,” one of the forward air controllers who flew fast-moving F-4E Phantoms over the deadly skies of Laos and North Vietnam.

9 April – Flint Whitlock will give a special presentation titled, “The Liberation of the Buchenwald Concentration Camp.” Flint, a BVM board member and member of the Colorado Authors Hall of Fame, spent many years and visits to the site of the camp that is today a memorial to Hitler’s victims doing deep research, uncovering chilling photos, and interviewing survivors and liberators. This research formed the basis to create his award-winning, “The Buchenwald Trilogy,” that is the most comprehensive history of this place of evil and the regime behind it.

23 April – Robert MacDonald entered the Army in 1959 and retired 30 years later as a Colonel. He served in the Infantry, Special Forces Green Beret, and Military Police. During the Vietnam war he was an advisor within the South Vietnam Army and on his second tour he was designated to serve as a US representative for repatriation of enemy prisoners of war after the war completed. He was also involved in the return of US prisoners held in prison in Hanoi, North Vietnam. He had a number of command and staff assignments after the war to include staff officer under the Superintendent of the Military Academy at West Point.

14 May – Battle of Midway – This year will mark the 80th anniversary (4-7 June 1942) of this significant naval battle of WWII in the Pacific Theater, occurring six months after the attack on Pearl harbor and one month after the battle of the Coral Sea. This special talk will address the key events of the battle, and will include a display of period U.S. and Japanese model ships built by master modelers Jerry Gavaldon and Kent Strapko. The Battle of Midway, along with the Guadalcanal campaign, is widely considered a turning point in the Pacific War.

Coffee and Conversation Archive

You can check out recordings of our past Coffee and Conversation presentations online through our museum’s YouTube channel. To view the full list of videos with their associated links, please click on this link: Coffee and Conversation Digital Guide

We’d love to hear from you! Please share any feedback with us about these videos at coffeeandconversation@broomfieldveterans.org. We’d also love to hear any suggestions you have for topics and speakers.