A journal following the history, design, construction and operation of Bernard Kempinski's O Scale model railroad depicting the U. S. Military Railroad (USMRR) Aquia-Falmouth line in 1863, and other model railroad projects.
©Bernard Kempinski All text and images, except as noted, on this blog are copyrighted by the author and may not be used without permission.

December 13, 2014

A USMRR Hail and Farewell

The military has a tradition of hosting  periodic events to welcome newly assigned members to the unit and to say good bye to departing ones.  They call these "Hail and Farewells." Tonight the USMRR Aquia Line had a "Hail and Farewell." Sadly, Brian Brendel and his lovely wife Michelle are departing Northern Virginia for the Wasatch Mountains of Utah. They are moving into a dream house with an even dreamier basement at the top of Weber Canyon, just east of Ogden. It's a shame that Brian will have to walk about 100 yards to watch the UP transcontinental mainline from his new home. Brian was a force in NVNTRAK and has been a good friend. Michelle is one of the sweetest persons, and  most understanding wives in the world. She also makes the most awesome cookies and cakes. We will miss them.

On the plus side, we are gaining two new model railroaders to the Northern Virginia area. John Barry and Paul Catapano. Both are moving to this area from California. John plans to model the ATSF on the San Francisco Bay Area, though the exact area is not yet clear. Paul is a big time model railroader operator. He had a massive Appalachian Coal hauling rail road in his old Burbank, CA home. He plans to build a new version of it in his next house in Winchester, VA.

Also  attending the event were John Drye, Joel Salmons and Doug Gurin.  The boys are itching for a work session on the layout, so we plan to start back up in Feb once the next book is done.

From L to R Joel, John D., John B., Brian, Paul, and  Doug.


  1. Careful with John and Paul; you might just end up liking them. (Actually, I know you will.)

  2. Can this be forwarded to Paul? I am an old friend of Lee Walser and would like Paul to give him my email. My name is Geri. Lee dated my sister years back.
    Thank you.


    1. Geri,
      Send me an email at bkempins at gmail dot com and I can forward it to Paul.