The National Airlines Alumni Association September, 2013
History of Reunion:
Bill Johnston here - I took over for Bill Moon some years ago as the Database Manager and try to put out the news about our group as well as the Annual Reunion information as it becomes available.
History: In 1983 after the Pan Am takeover and all that went with it, Jack Grathwol along with Bill Sheeley, Paul Bell, Frank Payak, and Rod Howard all in the former NAL Sales/Marketing group got together in a hotel room in SRQ and decided that in the forthcoming year, 1984, NAL should celebrate what would have been the 50th year of the airline. Although I was not there for the 50th, I understand that it was quite an event - with even G.T. Baker's daughter in attendance. It was such a success that we have continued the tradition - mostly on "system" cities in Florida and usually on the 5th and 10th years in the PIE area (thanks originally to Bill Sheeley CSM PIE) - normally in Clearwater Beach at the Sheraton Sand Key.
There is usually a cocktail party and cookout Friday night, a rather informal "business meeting" Saturday morning, most of the day free but on the big years a visit to Albert Whitted Airport, a banquet Saturday (along with a raffle of NAL memorabilia) and a hospitality suite open afterwards (as well as on Fri night, most of Saturday, and Sunday morning). Info on the yearly meeting is normally published sometime in the first half of the year.
We have tried to spread the word over the years, enhanced by technology, but curtailed by the demise of Pan Am and the "scattering" of the NAL personnel all over the map and into different industries. Much of the effort has been by word of mouth, and we find new people everyday. It is most important that we continue to spread the word to each and every former National employee to join our group.
Finally, let me know if you have any more questions, and I hope to see you at one of our reunions soon.
Added July 2014 (and updated in 2019) - Our last scheduled reunion (80th) was held at the Sheraton Sand Key in Clearwater Beach, Florida in October of that year. See "Reunion Info for Groups by Month" above for further information. A few of us have continued to meet on a very informal basis - we call it a "mini-reunion - and while we attempt to continue to keep this site updated, if you were an employee and wish to seek out when and where we will meet, please contact us at NalAlumni@earthlink.net.