General Meeting
November 21, 2009



Vice-Chairman Mr. Renteria called the meeting to order at 10:15 hrs. Roll was called, 27 of 37 members were present, a quorum. The 10 members not present are excused as it was determined to hold this meeting while the members from Operation Momís was able to attend. Our Chief sponsor Lt. Cramer was present. Five members from Operation Mom, including Gloria and Dottie were also present.

All present were asked to remove their hats for a moment of silence to remember our Prisoners of War, our Missing in Action, our Killed in Action, and for all of our military deployed around the world.

The members were asked if they received their minutes of the last months meeting. They had. Mr. Lemus made a motion to accept the minutes of our last meeting and Mr. Baer seconded the motion. The vote taken passed the motion to accept the minutes.

The following checks were cut; $1,400.00 to Operation Mom, and $907.05 to the San Quentin Visiting Room Toy Program. Our current balance remains at $200.00, which will be used for the purchase of new V.V.V.G.S.Q. light blue hats.

Jeff stated that he received the below listed correspondence so far during the month of November 2009.

VVA Airborne quarterly a publication from New Windsor MD. Thanks for the headsup on ďMilitaryĒ magazine.
A letter from Col. W.E. Weber, (USA Ret.), the editor of the Airborne Quarterly and always reaching out to Honorably discharged vets that happen to currently be incarcerated.
A letter from Dr. Karen Weber Stanley, PhD., author of the And some are not so lucky column in the Airborne Quarterly.
V.V.A. Chapter 20 Publication Between the Lines from Rochester, NY. Good luck with your annual Boxes for Military Project.
A letter from Ron Trovato, author of the Incarceration Column for the Between the Lines publication. Hey! Happy belated 59th old man!
A letter from N.I.V.N. chaplain Ray Dugdale of Ridgefield, WA. Thanks you Chappie for serving us.
A letter from Eugene Moore of the Stamps for Soldiers Project. Gene thanks us for continually sending used postal stamps used for physical therapy of recovering wounded veterans. Thank you also Gene, for all that you do for us.
A letter from James Weber, Veteran Workforce specialist, San Ranfael, CA. Good luck on your retirement James.
A letter from Col. J.R. Franklin, (USA Ret.), Pensacola FL. Thanks for the great letter Ross.
A letter from Tony Thompson, N.I.V.N., Hays State Prison, Trion, NY. Thank you for all the help you give to veterans Tony.



Mr. Fernando Lemus: Nothing new to report at this time.


Mr. Leavitt: These will be an Inmate Activity Group meeting at 1300 hr on Friday December 4, 2009. The meeting will be held in the Arts in Corrections Building. This meeting will set the schedule for activity group fundraisers for the next 16 months.


Mr. David Leavitt: Operation Momís will pick a date for the Scholarship Banquet and check presentation in May or early June of 2010 when they will be available. They will consult with Mr. Fernando Lemus, the Scholarship Committee Chairman, the North Bay Vet Center, and other outside groups and volunteers that we are a part of and/or that support us.


Mr. Baer: The Run to the Pen on November 7th was a great success. The Iron Pigs Motorcycle Club had 48 bikes roar into the yard for this event. The Iron Pigs Motorcycle Club presented Gloria Godchauex of Operation Momís with a substantial donation.


Mr. Fernando Lemus: We are still collecting 260 first class stamps that are needed for the mass mailing that we do to all local high schools. Anyone wishing to donate new first class stamps, please drop them off at my cell, 2-N-65. A date for the Scholarship Banquet will be chosen soon. Several dates are included in the information sent out to all local high schools. (A closing date for applications to be received, a date the winner is chosen by, a date the winner is notified by, and date their information must be given to our Chief Sponsor for gate passes, and the date of the banquet and check presentation.)


Mr. Rooke: We are continuing to receive more stamps. A lot of stamps are received from Condemned Row.

(We would like to clarify what the stamps for Soldiers Program is. Used postage stamps are torn from envelops in a way that leaves plenty of envelope around them. These stamps are peeled off the backing, and are used as therapy for wounded military personnel.)


Mr. Fernando Lemus: Our next Camaraderie night will be Saturday, December 19, 2009. Mr. Lemus will obtain a list of all available movies and choose one for us from that list.


Mr. Renteria: We are back to operations with kids coming in once again.


Mr. Rooke: We are still busy collecting tabs.

(These are aluminum can pop tops. We collect them and send them out. The Ronald McDonald Charities organization issues credits for each pound of pop tops received. These credits are used by the families of ill children for hours of dialysis, stays as the Ronald McDonald Houses, etc.)


Mr. Renteria: The peer-tutoring program here, Project Reach, has donated $100.00 to the Toy Program. Mr. McLean, a Viet Nam Veteran awarded a purple heart, has arranged for the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club to donate over 174 toys with a value of well over $1,200.00. Santa Claus and his elves will be in the visiting room handing out toys to children on Saturday, December 12, Sunday, December 13, Saturday, December 19, Sunday December 20, and Friday December 25.


Mr. Fernando Lemus: There is nothing new to report at this time.


Mr. Schuhmacher: Several boxes were sent out to the hobby store to be picked up. More are close to being ready.


A discussion took place concerning our V.V.G.S.Q. group hats. It was reiterated that a new member is given a hat and official V.V.G.S.Q. Group activity card upon his successful completion of the 90-day probationary period, and being voted into the group. When a member wants another V.V.G.S.Q. hat, it must be purchased from the group. This will ensure that an adequate supply of hats is always available for new members.

Our Chief Sponsor, Lt. Cramer and his Co-Sponsor, Ms. Debra Sheldon, are retiring at the end of December. Lt. Cramer stated that he would remain in the area and will continue to participate in our group activities. THANK YOU Lt. Cramer. Ms. Debra Sheldon will most likely be seeking employment elsewhere and be leaving the area. THANK YOU for being the wonderful person you are. You will both be missed one heck of a lot.


As a result of Lt. Cramer and Ms. Debra Sheldon retiring, we discussed two new staff members to Co-Sponsor our group, Lt. Evans and Sgt. Moore. They will be contacted soon. It must be noted that the V.V.G.S.Q. is not like any other Inmate Activity Group here at San Quentin Prison. Our group is involved in many more projects, and because of this, a single group sponsor is out of the question. We need a Chief Sponsor with a close back up as Co-Sponsor. The group discussion that followed was extremely positive and hopeful. Both Lt. Evans and Sgt. Moore have been here at San Quentin Prison for some time and are very familiar with our group.

Vice-Chairman Mr. Rentaria gave a special thank you to our Chief Sponsor Lt. Cramer who drove the truck in with all of the items to be packed and out again with the boxes read to be mailed. A very special thank you was also given to our Co-Sponsor, Ms. Debra Shelden for arriving early, opening the room, and making it possible for us to help Operation Mom pack the 108 boxes that will be sent out.

Mr. Stanley Baer made a motion to adjourn the meeting. The motion was seconded by Mr. Chis Schuhmacher. A vote was taken. The motion passed. The meeting adjourned at 1145 hrs.

A special note for all members: Please make sure that you attend the December 19th camaraderie night. This is the holiday season and the time of year that we have foggy day lock downs. Do not be surprised when the fog returns in the mornings and the Executive body decides to hold a meeting before the flick on December 19th. Also keep in mind that we will have quite a few of our members working as Santa Claus and his elves and reindeer.

NEXT MEETING:                                                       NEXT CAMARADERIE NIGHT 
   Will be at 0800 hr on December 20, 2009.                      will be 1730 hrs on December 19, 2009 

  David Leavitt                                                 M. W. Cramer
Secretary/Tresurer, V.V.G.S.Q.                           CORRECTIONAL LIEUTENANT
                                                            V.V.G.S.Q. CHIEF-SPONSOR

Telephone (415) 454-1460, EXT. 5309 or 5757
FAX Telephone (415) 455-5049 ATTN: D. Sheldon SIA

Brothers Helping Brothers

December 4, 2009 Group Heads Meeting @ 1300 hr
December 12, 2009 Toys for Tots in Visiting Room
December 13, 2009 Toys for Tots in Visiting Room
December 19, 2009 Toys for Tots in Visiting Room
December 19, 2009 Camaraderie Night @ 1530 hr
December 20, 2009 Toys for Tots in Visiting Room
December 20, 2009 Monthly Meeting @ 0800 hr
December 25, 2009 Toys for Tots in Visiting Room
January 30, 2010 Camaraderie Night @ 1530 hr
January 31, 2010 Monthly Meeting @ 0800 hr
February 27, 2010 Camaraderie Night @ 1530 hr
February 28, 2010 Monthly Meeting @ 0800 hr

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