Ancient Order of the Pterodactyl

Our Objectives

Activities and programs in response to our association’s objectives provide value to members, to the Coast Guard and to the public. Absent the existence of this association, this document would not exist, none of the recent past accomplishments listed here would have occurred and none of the ongoing programs of the association would be pursued.

Our History

Andrew Wall

George Thometz

Gus Shrode

Norm Horton

The organization called the Ancient Order of The Pterodactyl is the result of the hopes, aspirations and hard work of a small band of kindred spirits. In the spring of 1977, Andrew Wall, George F. Thometz, Marion ‘Gus’ Shrode, and Norman L. Horton, all retired Coast Guard aviators, informally organized a fraternal association open to all pilots who had flown or were flying Coast Guard aircraft. The organization was later expanded to included all personnel who flew in Coast Guard aircraft under official orders. Only those who have willfully placed themselves in harms way and have known that innermost feeling which comes from the personal experience which results in the saving of life or property can understand the bonding and uniqueness of Coast Guard aviation crewmembers.The Order is established as a non-profit fraternal organization and is operated within the circumscribed By-Laws of its constitution. Each year, members of the organization ‘Gather’ at a site chosen by consensus of the members. The first ‘Gathering’ now known as a “Roost” was held at the Naval Station Officer’s Club in Long Beach. That gathering was a signal that big things were to come. Since then annual conventions have been held each year at different places around the country.
Only those who have willfully placed themselves in harms way know that innermost feeling which comes from the personal experience of saving lives or property can understand the bonding and uniqueness of Coast Guard aviation crew members.
From that humble beginning in 1977, today’s organization has grown to over 1200 members. Membership is comprised of active duty Officers and Enlisted, retired and former Coast Guard Aviation personnel, and supporters, who are actively engaged in the pursuit of all of its objectives. Considerable emphasis has been placed on recognizing the accomplishements of our current Active Duty Aviation Force, and continuing the enlargement and perpetuation of Coast Guard aviation history within the service, and continuing to support Coast Guard Aviation at the National Museum of Naval Aviation in Pensacola, Florida, and at other appropriate museums.

By-Laws

Suumarized:
1. To actively contribute to the enlargement and perpetuation of the history of Coast Guard Aviation and the recognition thereof, both internally and to areas external to the service.

2. To support Coast Guard Aviation and its goals, and to promote interest in such matters in areas external to the service.

3. To maintain informational liaison between present and past members of the Coast Guard Aviation establishment.

4. To promote social contact and camaraderie between all Coast Guard aviation personnel and supports of Coast Guard Aviation through periodic gatherings, fraternal in nature, both national and regional in scope.