|A Sampling of Ad Hoc
One of the most interactive and interesting Korean War-related message boards on the internet is the KWVA
Ad-Hoc Yahoo Group (see KWVA News - Dissenting Voices - KWVA Ad Hoc Discussion Group for details).
Managed by KWVA member Don Finch of New York, KWVA Ad-Hoc provides a sounding board on which concerned
Korean War Veterans Association members can air their grievances, voice their opinions, offer their
suggestions, and share their knowledge of the KWVA.
The Ad Hoc is highly recommended to KWVA members and the general public by the Korean War Educator.
Joining the discussion group is very easy. Just contact Don Finch at email@example.com and request to
join. In the meantime, the Korean War Educator's KWVA News page offers the following sampling of
messages from the KWVA Ad-Hoc Archives so that readers can begin to understand and appreciate the wealth of
information stored there.
From the Archives
[Background: The following letter was posted by Don Finch on the Ad Hoc message board June 12,
2001. It is a copy of a certified letter sent to Harley Coon by Jim Ferris of New York on May 31,
Harley Coon, National President KWVA
4120 Industrial Lane
Beavercreek, Ohio 45430
The New York Department of the Korean War Veterans Association held their
spring convention in Saratoga Springs, New York May 23rd - May 24th 2001.
The primary concern of the members attending was the financial report from
our national treasurer. These reports are published in the Graybeards and are
sufficient for that media since the magazine is deployed to outside
organizations as well as our members.
However it is important that the National Directors be furnished with a more
detailed breakdown of our financial status. For example, a recent edition of
the Graybeards indicated that $26,000 was spent at the convention in
Arlington, VA. What expenditures necessitated $26,000? Also, the Chairman of
the membership/chapter formation committee is spending a sizable amount of
money in an effort to open new chapters. The members want to know what the
money was spent on.
Whatever the source of income may be, the resulting money belongs to the
membership and the membership has the right to know how it's being spent. All
expenditures should be submitted for review on a regular basis to the
National Directors and subsequently passed down to the State Department and
This is not an insurmountable task. We realize time will be needed to set up
these reports. With that in mind, we will allow 60 calendar days after
receipt of this certified letter for the treasurer to supply each of our
National Directors a complete breakdown of our financial status,
If this is not accomplished, we will have no recourse but to seek legal
advice and take action accordingly.
As president of the New York Department, I urge you to comply with our
request. Let's put this item to bed once and for all. If there is nothing to
hide, this report should present no problem.
Pres. NY Dept. KWVA
Harley Coon & Censorship
[Background: Censorship during the Coon Administration has been a continuing problem, as can be seen by the
following messages on the Ad Hoc. The postings below are in the order last to first. T
hey constitute a string of messages posted on the Ad Hoc about one particular subject, Harley Coon's
attempts at censorship.]
From: "VICTOR HAAS" <VIC121529@msn.com>
To: "Thomas W. Gaffney" <gaffnet@>
Subject: Re: KWVA National 'Crossing the Line'
Date: Mon, 15 Oct 2001 18:51:34 -0400
Good for you, Tom. He certainly has no excuse now. I agree 100% with you. He is apparently of the opinion
that he can not be kicked out of office. I think he needs a rude awakening. Count on me for support and I
know our Chapter is also on your side.
Vic Haas, President Chapter 173
From: Thomas W. Gaffney
Sent: Monday, October 15, 2001 6:31 PM
To: Various recipients
Our JA/Email Netowrk Coordinator Jake Feaster will forward John
Kornenberger's "Open Letter #2" & subsequent ones, contrary to this
unprofessional, sleazy try at muzzling our free flow of information,
along the lines of the currently censored "Graybeards" model.
See below the text that follows for my reply to Mr. Coon.
Sun, 14 Oct 2001 13:31:45 -0400
From:"Jake Feaster" <jfeaster@>
To:"Tom \(FL President\) Gaffney \(KWVA-Central FL\)" <gaffnet@>
See email below from Harley below that I told you about.
After talking to you last nite, I had a call from Harley. He knows my ph #
but doesn't know yours!! He went on for about an hour, repeating &
elaborating on the below; plus info covered in (Kohenburger?)
(Krongerbuger?) Kronenberger's letters. (see misspellings below).
Says the tapes will prove the validity of his actions & falsity of John's letters.
Asked that I not "publish" the rest of them until I get more information; etc.
I will be gone until Fri, so I might go ahead & send #2, since I won't have
my email files with me at St Pete but will be able to read & send my email,
using my laptop.
Comment or phone? Will be leaving around 4pm today.
Sent: Saturday, October 13, 2001 2:52 PM
> If you will note that every thing Mr. Koenburger writes is hearsay. > He has not attended any
meetings that he talks about. As far as Masion is
> concerned Past President Pappas appointed him before the Executive Council
> approved him, and we just made a motion to make it legal. As far as who
> edits the Graybeard that is the Editor decision. If there is something
> questionable the Executive Council will make the decision. As for Tramonte > Charges were filed He was
given two chances to defend himself. The
> Membership expelled him. If you would like We have video tapes of the
> meeting in Tuscola,IL, Arlington, VA both executive Council and Membership. > If you want to know the
truth just ask for a copy. I have received several > complaints about John Krongerbuger giving out false
> more maybe you should talk to the Imjin Chapter President If I can be of
> any help in dispelling any of these misinformation please free free to
> contact me Harley J. Coon, President
> Korean War Veterans Association
15 Oct 2001 09:23:22 -0400
From: "Thomas W. Gaffney" <gaffnet@>
To: Harley COON <CoonKoreanExpow@>
Per usual, you continue to exhibit your lack of manners, non-observance
of professional protocol in calling Jake Feaster directly, again using the
lame excuse that you didn't have my phone number.
You may have complete censorship over what's printed in the Graybeards,
but here in Florida, we have all taken an oath to defend the Constitution of the United States of America.
That ploy crashed last June when I told you of my resentment, and you
countered with the "My computer crashed and I lost your #" - that doesn't fly any longer, after a hiatus of
Yes, I would indeed like to view the tapes of the Arlington meeting -
please forward to, one more time, 624 Vespers Way, Orange City, FL 32763; phone # (904) or (386) 775-8803.
Thomas W. Gaffney
President Dept of FL
Korean War Veterans Association
The "St. Louis Meeting"
[Background: At a special called meeting in St. Louis,
restraints were placed on the powers of the president of the KWVA. Harley Coon boycotted the meeting,
later declaring the motions made there null and void for technical reasons.]
Subj: Re: Who Called the ST. Louis Meeting
Date: 10/19/01 10:23:34 AM Eastern Daylight Time
From: Charley Price
To: trousdale@, gaffnet@, amboyduke@, marisa.magill@, csterchele@, pfagot@, SKronen266@ , jwhit@, swpratt@,
firstname.lastname@example.org , Quahog 41 , Steve@
CC: gigimom@, buckngeri66@, Swingin grandma7@
TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN:
Mr. Trousdale letter confirms my suspicions that the original boycotter was Mr. Coon. It is my intent to
clearly identify the root of the unrest within the KWVA.
Mr. Clawson/and/or Mr. Tramonte had the authority and right to call a meeting of the Board of Directors.
According to Mr. Trousdale and Mr. Ed Magill; Mr. Coon did in fact receive appropriate notification of the
date, time and place of the meeting in St. Louis. Mr. Coon elected to boycott the meeting and Mr. Pratt
erroneously and inappropriate rule that the St. Louis meeting was illegal. This is the start of bigger
things to come; such as, the expulsions of Mr. Tramonte and Mr. Rittenhouse from the Board of Directors and
replaced by Mr. Coon's appointees. The replacements appointed by Mr. Coon are well know as his close
associates and two are from the state of Ohio and the other is from Wisconsin. What is wrong with this
picture? The territory west of the Mississippi, The Southern States, and the North Eastern Region are given
no representation. What can be seen in this picture? Mr. Coon has consolidated his power base by his
appointments within his own geographical base of operation; Virginia, Maryland and Ohio. Can everyone see
this picture and the strategical maneuver created by Mr. Coon? Mr. Coon has seized control of the KWVA. He
controls our money, our reputation, our honor, and the goals and objectives that we all stand for. Please
review the National Goals and Objectives of the KWVA! These national goals and objectives are not being
conformed to and followed as the accepted precedent.
I ask all addressees to read and digest this message. Then take the action as they feel is appropriate. I
make no recommendations. I do not seek higher office. I do not seek any other form of recognition. I seek
the truth and fair play. I seek for the KWVA to operate in a fair and equitable manner. I seek that all
Korean War Veterans are treated in a fair, honest and unbiased fashion. The future of the Organization is
in your hands. I request all addressee forward this message to as many other members as possible.
[Background: Faking someone else's identity is easy to do on the internet, and phony messages have been used
repeatedly to discredit opponents of Harley Coon. In 2001, someone began to send out fake e-mail
messages over John Kronenberger's name using a similar (but not the same) e-mail address. Kronenberger
has long been an opponent of Harley Coo, so it isn't hard to figure out who is behind the fake e-mails that
were sent out to try to discredit Kronenberger. Following is just one example of the many fake
Sent: Tuesday, November 06, 2001 10:03 PM
From: John Kronenberger
102 Williamsburg Dr.
Belleville, IL 62221-3157
November 7, 2001
"Open Letter" to Elected Officials in the National Korean War Veterans
Association and Interested Members.
Dear Sirs and Ladies,
My letters have given out mostly false and misleading information I should
not have printed it. First I would like to say Mr. Coon did receive
approximately 30 or 40 letters complaining about my Open Letters. I have
copies of several. One from. Mr. Bill Orman from New York wrote, "Who in
the HELL is John Kronenberger". Then he goes on to tell me I should spend my
time talking to children about my combat experience during the tell American
Program. Since I was not in combat I cannot tell of combat experiences. I
sold Daisies twice one year. [I do have aspiration to be the K.W.V.A.
President or any other Office. I can get.]
Another supporter of Mr. Coon's states that I am not very nice, I've never
met this person. Still another says I am a whiner and wants to know if I
would send him a copy of my DD214. Then he says, "Thank God we don't have
some person leading who likes writing as much as you." He then calls me a
poor slob. The K.W.V.A. is in the best shape it has ever been a thanks to
Mr. Coon. One of my many e-mails says, ["I can see an Audit once a year as
long as it donâ€™t conflict, with K W V A National bylaws, I subsequently was
asked to resigned as Chapter Treasurer.] [This is my last "Open Letter." ."
] I think Mr. Coon is a good "Leader" of the K.W.V.A. and a past State
Department President. I heard there was a quorum at Arlington, V A on July
26,2001 official meetings counted and reported by Mr. Edwards and Mr. Jerry
Lake Sgt. of Arms. Recently Mr.Edwards reports that he checked the >
attendees ID's. I was told no one challenged the count. Business is conducted
when a quorum is present. Business conducted without a quorum is ratified at
the next regular meeting. [>While seeking the truth I find that Mr. Price
gave me has been misleading and false. Information. Mr. Price told me he has
a strong desire to hold national Office.]
We don't need him as an officer in the K.W.V.A. I feel honored by all who
have thanked me for writing my Open letters, especially those who said they
felt left out. I started writing them to find out the truth, [but little did
I know that I was given much false information. Now I want to correct a
wrong doing by correcting some false writings, some of these statements are
so far from the truth on this it's hard for me to comprehend.]
Past record proves it. The dissension and turmoil were out there when Mr.
Coon became president and he turned the KWVA around and headed it in the
right is true and not to be ignored. [A proper notice will > be put in the
Graybeards for the meeting in Las Vegas, Nevada.]
As far as Mr. Coon telling Pappas "at least a dozen times" that Mr. Maison
was not a Prisoner of War and a phony, why didn't, Mr. Pappas then request a
hearing on Mr. Maison at an Official meeting to have him expelled? Then
maybe the K.W.V.A. would not have been in the financial mess that Pappas left
Please Pass this "Open Letter " to your "E" Mail friends
phone: (618) 277-2311
FAX: (618) 277-2004
1) The first thing that is very obvious is that this e-mail is a <Copy> and <
Paste>. (Notice the carets > that were inadvertently left in the text body.)
2) In the header, a sloppy "copy" of John's usual salutation is used.
3) Then, the text was reworded to state almost the exact opposite of what
John said in his original e-mail posting.
4) Note the lack of paragraph breaks. A good writer uses paragraph breaks to
separate ideas and also to add white space which, in turn, makes for easier
5) In the signature block, between <Respectfully> and <John's addresses,
phone number and web page URL>, the person has added "Please Pass this "Open
Letter " to your "E" Mail friends"
6) The writer of the phony e-mail doesn't have a very good working knowledge
of computer terminology. <"E" Mail friends"> should be written as <E-mail
friends> or <e-mail friends>. the former is the preferred format.
7) In giving the e-mail a cursory glance, I see many spelling and grammatical
errors. I've made note of a few in the text and surrounded them by the use of
brackets [ ].
Parents should keep their children away from the computer. Or, at least
monitor what the child sends out in e-mails.
Could this (the phony) have been written by Harley Coon? It has all the
earmarks of Harley's writings (?). Note I use the word <writings> very
On Illegal Third Term Candidates
[Background: The current KWVA president is sitting
illegally because he orchestrated an illegal change of the KWVA bylaws in order to run for office. The
advise of KWVA Judge Advocate Sherman Pratt was sought on what KWVA members could do to stop the illegal
candidacy. As per Pratt's response below, remedies were limited.]
From Pratt, January 25, 2002....
"You ask what advice I have for the membership if some candidates fill
for a third that I have ruled would be illegal. I don't have any advice for the membership on this delicate
matter....I do not view my role as the legal advisor as also being an advisor to the membership on what
positions they should take on a matter on which I have rendered a Judge Advocate opinion. This may sound
like a cop out - but I feel I must be cautious about over stepping my role or authority.
I don't want to be in a position of seeming to advise the members of what they should do in an awkward
situation such as this - where the JA has rendered a legal opinion and the president seems to chose to
I do feel it appropriate, however, to comment on what they membership might be entitled to do - not what
they SHOULD do. In disregarding my opinion that the action of the membership in voting to end term limits
in the bylaws, Harley has been saying that the membership has spoken and that their action over rides action
by the Executive Council - the Judge Advocate, and all others. We are at some odds here in our positions.
I would say that the bylaws govern unless they are changed in a manner set forth in the bylaws - which, as
I say in my opinion, was not done last July when they voted to end term limits. The bylaws, as I wrote,
specify that any changes must be routed through and approved by the Executive Council - that was not done
last year. Thus the membership was not entitled to consider the matter and any action by the general
membership was in conflict with the bylaws and of no validity.
No officer ending a second term should file for reelection next month or be certified as a candidate by the
chair of the election committee. Harley announced I am told at Las Vegas that he will file and my
understanding is that the elections committee chair, Ken Cook, will place him on the ballot. Short of open
rebellion of some sort, I don't know what can be done to stop either. I don't welcome any quarrel with
either - both of whom I think are doing a good job, but I have told Harley that if this happens he may well
be asking for another law suit - which is the last thing KWVA needs just now as we are trying to emerge from
the two now pending.
Without advising that it should be done, I can simply say that a challenge could be made from the floor at
the upcoming annual meeting in July - but by then the election will have been over - if someone else running
for president wins, then the matter will he moot insofar as Harley is concerned. If Harley (or a present
director running for a third term) wins then the foundation may be laid for a very troublesome
confrontation with those who feel the development is neither legal or fair. There are those out there who
would not hesitate to oppose the seating of third term victors and efforts and motions could be made from
the floor to reverse election results...as they applied to such candidates.
I realize I am not being very helpful - but every problem in life does not necessarily have a remedy...which
may apply in this situation. Sorry not more helpful...I think at this point the Executive Council's position
in the matter could be most influential - if their views could be quickly ascertained and communicated to
would be third term candidates."
It's Not That They Didn't Know
[Background: It's not that the members of the Executive Council didn't know that Harley Coon
was illegally running for office. Oh yes, they knew. This message was posted on the KWVA Ad Hoc
by KWVA member Jim Ferris on February 4, 2002.]
"I WOULD LIKE EACH OF YOU TO SEND THE FOLLOWING MESSAGE TO MR.
KENNETH COOK THE NOMINATIONS / ELECTION COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN. PLEASE RE TYPE IT AND SEND IT VIA YOU OWN
EMAIL. AND BE SURE TO SIGN IT AS I WILL DO. YOU MAY REWORD THIS ANY WAY YOU WISH AS LONG AS YOU KEEP IN THE
SPIRIT OF THE MESSAGE. ALSO SEND THE SAME MESSAGE VIA SNAIL MAIL TO MR. KREBS EDITOR OF THE GRAYBEARDS AND
MR. JONES BYLAWS CHAIRMAN. IN ADDITION ASK ALL OF YOUR CHAPTER MEMBER TO DO THE SAME. THE MESSAGE SHOULD
READ AS FOLLOWS;
DEAR MR. COOK
THE NATIONAL JUDGE ADVOCATE HAS SUPPLIED SUFFICIENT EVIDENCE TO THE NEW YORK DEPARTMENT PRESIDENT TO
CONVINCE US THAT ANY ONE RUNNING FOR A THIRD TERM ON THE NATIONAL BALLOT IS VIOLATING THE VERY ESSENCE OF
OUR BY-LAWS. IT IS THEREFORE YOUR SWORN DUTY AS OFFICERS OF OUR ORGANIZATION TO UPHOLD AND PROTECT THE
CONSTITUTION AND BYLAWS OF OUR ORGANIZATION. WITH THIS IN MIND WE IMPLORE YOU TO DO SO AND DO NOT ALLOW A
THIRD TERM REQUEST TO BE PUBLISHED IN THE GRAYBEARDS OR ON THE BALLOT ITSELF. DO NOT MISTAKE THIS REQUEST
AS A PERSONAL ATTACK AGAINST ANY ONE SEEKING A THIRD TERM. THIS IS MERELY A REQUEST TO SUSTAIN THE INTEGRITY
OF THE BYLAWS OF THIS ORGANIZATION , WITHOUT THESE BY LAWS WE ARE NOTHING MORE THAN A SOCIAL CLUB WITH OUT
SIGN YOUR NAME
MR. COOKS EMAIL ADDRESS IS AS FOLLOWS
his address is 1611 North Michigan Avenue, Danville, Il. 61834-6239
MR. JONES ADDRESS IS 1317 ASBURY RED. RICHMOND VA. 23229
MR. KREBS ADDRESS IS 24 GOUCHER WOODS CT. TOWSON MD. 21286-5655
IF THEY GET ENOUGH OF THESE MESSAGES PERHAPS THEY WILL SEE THE LIGHT. REMEMBER, YOU MAY REWORD THIS IF YOU
WISH BUT DON'T MAKE IT TOO LONG AND DO NOT THREATEN ANY ONE IN ANY WAY SHAPE OR FORM. THANK YOU ALL
AND KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK.
JIM FERRIS, PRESIDENT - KWVA Department of NY"