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On June 15, 2008 I received the following e-mail
Just happened to find your web site this evening, what a .surprise...,I am the son of  Lt.Col.Walter Pennino, who was the first commanding officer. .I have papers and pictures, are you interested in some copies.
                                                                              Walter A Pennino Jr.

Walter Pennino, Jr. sent me the following information to add to the overall history of AHTNC.


Lt. Col. Walter A. Pennino

Lt. Col. Walter A. Pennino (1915-1998) was born in Massachusetts and served the first half of his career in the US Army. At age 44 he retired as a Lieutenant Colonel and went on to work for the Commerce Department as Coordinator of Information for the Bureau of International Commerce and for NASA as head of its public information program. Following his retirement from NASA, Pennino worked in the corporate world with Donald K. “Deke” Slayton, one of the original seven Gemini astronauts, to develop the Conestoga, a privately developed rocket. Throughout his several careers, Pennino continued to work as a freelance author, contributing to the Boston Globe and the Washington Post.

While serving in Europe during WWII, Pennino earned two Bronze Stars, one for valor; two Army Commendation medals; the Purple Heart; the Combat Infantryman’s Badge; the European Theater of Operations ribbon with five campaign stars; and the Belgium Fouraguerre. He was wounded in Holland as a staff officer for the 48 th Armored Infantry Battalion of the 7 th Armored Division, but returned to fight in the Battle of the Bulge. Following his service in Europe, Pennino joined the occupation in Japan as a press attaché to General MacArthur. Along with his military duties for the occupation, Pennino published articles in the Boston Daily Globe on such topics as women, marriage, and shopping in Japan. Furthermore, in 1948, as News Chief for MacArthur, he wrote the eyewitness accounts of Tōjō Hideki’s execution. It was at this time that Pennino took the photos in this collection.

During the Korean War Pennino worked for the Boston Globe, but represented the Secretary of the Army in the war correspondent’s running feud with the military over censorship, which he ultimately endorsed. Pennino also went to Korea during the war to cover the Marine landing at Inchon and to set straight the conflicting reports over the fighting on the Pusan perimeter early in the war. His magazine article on the fighting, “Delaying Action,” was adapted for television’s Hollywood Opening Night. (His article covering the same material, “7 Bloody Hours that Saved Korea,” originally published in Real can be found at http://www.koreanwar-educator.org/topics/pusan/#BriefAccounts) On his return to the US, his reports on the low morale of the troops and weak leadership of the US military led to an assignment in Kansas City, MO where he organized the Army Home Town News Service as a means to improve the image of soldiers fighting in Korea. He also served as the unit’s first commanding officer. Later, Pennino worked in Washington D.C. as the Director of Information for the Army Reserve and ROTC Affairs Bureau. For his efforts to increase ROTC and reserve enrollment he was awarded the Silver Anvil Award, the highest honor the American Public Relations Society offers.

After his retirement from the military in 1959, NASA recruited him to head up its public information program. As Deputy Director and then Director, Pennino led NASA’s worldwide press operations, as well as its operational programs for both manned and unmanned space flights. Pennino was also the advance man on the Presidential goodwill tours made by the Apollo 11 crew, and helped to bring the Apollo 13 crew safely home after a malfunction forced NASA to abort the mission. During the energy crisis of the 1970’s, Pennino established a nationwide public relations campaign for the Alliance to Save Energy (Washington, D.C.), as well as published the bimonthly newsletter for the American Public Gas Association. After retiring from NASA, Pennino worked in private industry, helping to open up commercial opportunities in space to the private sector through the development of the aforementioned Conestoga rocket.

In 1998 Ret. Lt. Co Walter Pennino passed away and was interred at Arlington National Cemetery.


2/12/2014  Recently found...Major Walter Pennino's article for Army Digest titled "From Front Lines to Headlines."

The ladies at the AHTNC Christmas Party 1952...the lady with 2 stars on her dress (back row third from the left) is

Martha Pennino, wife of Major Walter Pennino. 

Who are the rest of the ladies...wives of those stationed at AHTNC and secretaries?

Anyone with info please respond  rollyk@aol.com


The following detail is taken from the AHTNC Newsletter
celebrating the 10th Anniversary of AHTNC


In recognition of the tenth birthday of the Army Home Town News Center, you are requested to attend the News Center Birthday Celebration, Friday, 7 July 1961, at 3:00 p.m. in the cafeteria.
                                                                                                       Earl W. Bihlmeyer
                                                                                                       Lt. Col. Infantry


Commanding Officers, AHTNC during the decade 1951 - 1961
Maj. Walter A. Pennino
Maj. Jake G. Lyons
Lt. Col. Thomas J Cunningham
Lt. Col. Donald A. Bartoni
Lt. Col. Earl W. Bihlmeyer


  By: Bettie J. Wiley
Hello again from the office where there is always news. Since our last publication we have received newcomers in the persons of Private Fredrick D. Bohm, Jr., John F. Dooley and James G. Unger. Welcome, Sirs, and may your tour of duty in Kansas City be a pleasant one. On the list for promotions are Will Nicoll, and Lauriston Showalter Jr., who advanced to Specialists Four and John F. Dooley, James R. Kanable, and Loren J. Durward to Private First Class. Pvt. Marshall A. Barton went deep in the heart of Texas and took unto himself a bride. The ceremony was performed in Fort Worth on July 3. Congratulations from the entire staff. M. Sgt Harris C. Clarkson departed AHTNC on July 22 enroute to Germany . Specalist four Neil J. Scott returned to civilian life on July 21. Alta Garner after nine years of service, resigned on June 17 to become a full time housewife and mother. She was entertained at the office (coffee break) and was the recipient of many lovely and useful gifts. Dixie Emick, accompanied by a former news cen­ter employees Vayda Dennis, enjoyed an eight day visit in Colorado Springs .
clipping from Dixie Emick Durward


Do you have any Echos of AHTNC