Long Island New York

On February 21, 2008, nine Sampson Veterans met, for the first time, at a Long Island restaurant. The conversations which were very lively, focused on our Basic Training at Sampson and what we did in the Air Force. It turns out that most of the group served for four years, then returned to civilian life, while a few had careers spanning twenty or more years.

At the conclusion of the lunch a question was asked and answered. The men were asked, “Do we want to do this again?" and the answer was Yes". A suggestion was made that we contact the 56 th Fighter Group Restaurant. The restaurant was the perfect choice as it is designed to resemble a W W II Army Air Corps base in England. It is located at Republic Airport, in Farmingdale, New York. Surrounding the restaurant are many vintage W W II aircraft and vehicles.

A call to the Sampson AFB Veterans Association was made for a listing of all association members living on Long Island and the Greater New York City area. This was accomplished and phone calls were made to each one inviting them to attend the next luncheon.

On May 29, 2008, fifty three Sampson Veterans met at the restaurant. Each man introduced himself to the group. A discussion regarding the formation of a Long Island Squadron followed. It was unanimous, and the months of February, June and October were chosen for our meetings. Elections were then held for the position of Squadron Commander and Vice-Commander.

Since that gathering our numbers have grown. We have a roll call of 125 members. Included in that number are Army, Army Air Corps, Air Force, Marines and Navy veterans. On average we have seventy attendees per luncheon. Many men bring friends, wives or significant others.

Due to the closing of the 56th Fighter Group restaurant in July 2012 and Diletto’s in 2014, our group now gathers at Verdi’s, in Westbury, N.Y.

Harvey Reibel, Squadron Commander, Richard Naughton, Vice-Commander
Arnold Katz, Chief Assistant #1, Ed Maldonado, Chief Assistant #2
Jim Fuori, Squadron Photographer


Our luncheon/meetings are held every 4th month at Verdi’s, 680 Old Country Road in Westbury, NY
 Directions  
For information contact LI Squadron Commander Harvey Reibel at 516 455-2710 or by EMail at: sampson.liny@yahoo.com

June Lunch/Meeting TBA

The next Long Island Squadron lunch/meeting to be held at Verdi’s in Westbury, NY TBA.

The Long Island Squadron held it’s Winter Luncheon at Verdi’s in Westbury, NY on February 24th. We had 50 attendees.

Our guest speaker was a LCDM from the Navy Operational Support Center on Long Island. He had deployed several times in the last few years and had much to say about that.

Needless to say the Air Force Boys had many old “War Stories” as well.

Our raffle and door prizes continue to be a big hit at these luncheons.

The next luncheon of our squadron will be in June.

Harvey Reibel, Long Island Squadron Commander

Photos courtesy of Jim Fuori

Activities