George Allen / EducateMHC Blog Mobile Home & Land Lease Community Advocate & Expert

September 26, 2022

A Week of Nostalgia…

Filed under: Uncategorized — George Allen @ 10:25 am

Blog Posting # 708. Copyright 30 September 2022. EducateMHC

Perspective. ‘Land lease communities, previously manufactured home communities, and earlier, ‘mobile home parks’, comprise the real estate component of manufactured housing! EducateMHC is the online national advocate, realty asset class historian, trend spotter, education resource, and textbook supplier for land lease communities throughout North America! To input this blog and or connect with EducateMHC, telephone (317) 881-3815 and or visit

A Week of Nostalgia & Week of Land Lease Community Education & Networking

57 years ago I was a 22 year old second lieutenant of U.S. Marines. I’d just graduated from Eastern University, in St. Davids, PA., then relocated with Carolyn, and our 10 month old daughter Susan, to Woodbridge, VA., – near Quantico, VA., where I’d be attending The Basic School (‘TBS’) during the last half of year 1967. Next, following a month of combat engineer officer training at Camp Lejeune, NC, in early 1968, I settled Carolyn and Susan into an apartment in Drexel Hill, PA., and headed off to the Republic of South Vietnam for a 13 month tour.

A half century has passed, and except for very infrequent contact with Marine officers I trained with at TBS, I’m about to be reunited with 80 or so who’ll convene this week for our first and only reunion. Our TBS class numbered 200+; many were killed in action (‘KIA’) in Vietnam and many have died of natural causes since then. Carolyn will rekindle relations with a half dozen or so wives who were with us back in 1967 (married officers were the extreme exception at the time, children even fewer). Will likely be a happy, but also bittersweet, time together once again.

Of particular interest to me will be seeing John Dietz; he and I traveled to Junior Platoon Leaders Class (‘PLC’) together in 1964, and then TBS. John was an infantry platoon commander in Vietnam, and returned to the states to begin a career with the IRS, eventually forming his own private investigation firm in Texas.

And Chris Ray. He and his wife Jeanie were with us in Quantico. Chris and I spent the first half our combat tours, as combat engineer officers with the 11th Engineer Battalion, 3rd MARDIV. He’s a New Englander, and we’re looking forward to catching up the half century since we were last together.

Then there’re the Marine officers who won’t be present at this reunion. One in particular, Marcus Fiebelkorn. He and his wife and infant were with us in Quantico too. Marcus was KIA a month after he arrived in-country. To this day I wonder what happened to his family….

And our class has its’ noteworthy alums: General Pete Pace, the 16th, but first USMC Chairman, of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under President George Bush (2005-2007); and Colonel James Buchli, astronaut (1979), and now member of the Astronaut Hall of Fame. Some of you reading this will recall my tale of Jim’s three ‘life objectives’ shared at TBS: Go to Vietnam & come back a hero – which he did; become an astronaut and fly to the moon – which he came close to doing with several shuttle flights into space; and become Commandant of the USMC. Hey, two out of three is a worthy performance!


Onto the SECO Conference in Atlanta, GA!

Other than the annual RV/MH Hall of Fame Induction Banquet in Elkhart, IN., last month, this trip to SECO 2022 will be my first participation in a manufactured housing-related event since the Final Networking Roundtable during mid-August 2021. Why? Because when you’re retired, and no longer have a business enterprise ‘paying your way’, one becomes very selective as to where one invests his/her retirement income. So, SECO ‘Here I come!’

Hope to see many blog floggers (readers) at this seminal event. This is the 11th year it’s been hosted in Atlanta. If you attend, look me up poolside on 5 October. I’ll be there with Lou Vela and other ‘old timers’, sharing tales (all true) from years and decades past in the ‘mobile home’ world. EXAMPLES: How many of you know of the Chicago mob’s past involvement (& why) in mobile home parks back in the late 1970s. Or the convicted murderer of single women (for their money), who did his nefarious work while his wife managed manufactured home communities in the Midwest. And the one time multi-community owner, circa late 1970s, who became a mass murderer before committing suicide over a business deal gone bad. And there’s more….

For more information about the SECO Conference program, google it – and then register.


One More Reason You Should Be Reading MHInsider Magazine

As I was penning the previous paragraph, the thought occurred to me: I wonder how many blog floggers (readers) also read MHInsider magazine. Hopefully, many of you. But here’s the additional reason why you should. My ‘marching orders’, so to speak, as Allen Legacy columnist, is to share a wide variety of true stories, from both manufactured housing and land lease community camps, that have historic and contemporary importance and application. In essence, I’m relating personal and corporate adventures and experiences that have occurred since the late 1970s. Nowhere else will you ever find this sort of interesting information. EXAMPLES: In single section ‘mobile homes’ why were entry doors always on the curb side of the home (there’s a hint within that question). Today we think of ROC USA, but there was a pre-REIT firm by the name of ROC Properties. Know the firm that ROC abbreviation represented? Who coined the much-used term ‘community owner/operator’? No, it wasn’t me. And finally, for now, what Florida-based, now retired, fee manager of land lease communities introduced the concept of ‘good resident relations’ to manufactured housing during the early 1980s? See what I mean? All this comes out in MHInisder magazine!

George Allen, CPM, MHM

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