Bob, Two Vets
Fifty Two Years and Counting
Bob Claunch and Jack Reavley
have been together for fifty two years of blissful
mutual love since they met in the midst of the
They have shared every moment for over half a
century; first owning and operating a radio station
together in Raymond, Washington for 23 years, and
later having second careers in the motion picture
industry in Los Angeles.
||Bob was born
in Birmingham, Alabama, the third child
of a family that frequently moved around
the country due to his father's work.
Settling in Indianapolis, Indiana in his
teenage years, he attended a Catholic
high school there. Bob very much
wanted to serve his country; his older
brother had been killed in battle in
World War II, leaving behind two small
children. Despite being at first
denied due to a heart condition, he was
determined to do the right thing in his
life by offering his service as his
brother had done, even knowing he was
somehow different from others.
Finally, after volunteering over and
over, he entered the US Army in 1948 and
ended up being assigned to work in
American Armed Forces radio in Germany
during the early occupation period
following the close of the war.
Bob Claunch served honorably, leaving as
a Staff Sgt in 1952.
Jack was born in
Springfield, Illinois. He and his brother and
sister were all drafted into the service during
World War II. Serving, during the war as a
sergeant, he trained troops in Texas. There he
eventually applied for Officers Candidate School and began a career in radio while serving
in the reserves after the war. In 1950, due to
his radio broadcast experience, he was recalled to
active duty to serve in Germany in Armed Forces
radio in Munich.
Bob became an announcer and
copy writer at the Munich headquarters, and it was
there that he met Jack.
Western civilization did not collapse because these
two men fell in love over 50 years ago.
After being honorably
discharged within a few months of each other, Bob
and Jack joined each other back in the US, traveled the
country, and eventually bought a small town radio
station together. For 23 years, they broadcast
local sports and community activities, ran a small
theatre, and were well appreciated. In their
50s, they moved to Los Angeles and began careers in
movies as extras and character actors in feature
films and situation comedies, playing the roles of
wise middle-aged doctors and judges, among others.
||Bob and Jack do not see
themselves as activists. They have lived good
decent faithful lives together and would simply like
to have the same rights as any other Americans.
Jack at 85, and Bob at 83, are most concerned about
the other getting his social security benefits,
depending on who passes away first. At
present, of course, the right to that benefit does
not exist for them despite all the years that they
have been together. Both being proud veterans
who served their country, each is eligible for
veterans benefits, but as individuals.
two men, who faithfully served their country, will
live to see their love and rights recognized.
2009 Gay Military Signal