Tony joined the Army and for five years was a White House communications aide to Ike Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, and LBJ.   While there, he became a gifted writer and began his racing career.

                      The White House, Washington, DC

    I was fortunate to be chosen for the White House Army Signal Agency.  Ike's White House was run very Military.  One of my first jobs was to get suited up by DC's most noted tailor at the time.  Same tailor who did Ike's suits and past presidents.  Don't remember his name, but I was very impressed at the time.

    My civilian status position required I have a wardrobe of at least three suits, blazer, alternate slacks, etc.  Three piece suits were in, I was very ivy league, lived in Georgetown at a rooming house which included mostly our work group.  Walked to the White House on a daily basis, flashed my credentials and went to work.

        When Kennedy got in, everyday operations were lightened up.  More importantly the other military divisions were brought into play.  It now was called White House Communications Agency

    When Kennedy was shot, I was in Dallas, however not at Dealey Plaza.  Heard about it while at the Johnson ranch, through the radio communication network set up.  After that, things tightened up a lot, Johnson was very paranoid.  It was no longer fun to be at work.

    When my six years were up, I had made Sgt E-5 pay grade. I had been at the White House five years, and it was time that I be reassigned if I chose to stay in.  Cambodia was heating up and I had no interest in being over there for that operation.  After 5 cushy years, somehow being in uniform again did not meet my criteria.  No guarantees where I would have been assigned to, but my guess Viet Nam was the next stop.

    With my Top Secret and Crypto security clearances, I wanted to go to the secret service.  Higher education and a degree was required.  But college was a disappointment to me.  I had taken some classes from University of Md., so wanted to go full time after I got out.  When I spoke to the Dean of Admissions, he said a vet could not attend full time because younger students getting out of high school took precedence.  Trying to beat the draft I guess.  It was the same everywhere.

    With the secret service blocked, I chose to get out and pursue my racing career in September 1964.  I believe it was the right choice.  My time in the service, especially the five years with White House Communications was invaluable.  Working for three Presidents was an education not too many people could have.

    My first car had been a new 60 VW and than later a 58 Porsche 356 Cabriolet.  It was then that I learned to work on my own car, a matter of cost on military pay...  Eventually I acquired a new Volvo PV 544 and experimented with the local Mason Dixon Sports Car Club, doing some Autocrossing, hill climbs, even ice racing.  I decided B sedan racing was my niche.

Tony's personal Camp David Hill Climb:  "I used to practice driving up to Camp David's twisty roads from Thurmont Md.  I was the terror of the Park Rangers."

    The year before I left the service, I took my Volvo to a three-day SCCA driving school at Marlboro, MD, in which you received a provisional regional license to race.

   I won my school race against Mini Coopers and other Volvos in the rain.  I got my regional license that day in Sept. of 63.   I continued to race locally at Marlboro, did autocrosses, and a hill climb at Hershey, PA.

    I got needed weekends off by  juggling my work schedule and occasionally trading duty with others.  Still existing on Army income, my racing thoughts grew.  Not much money to work with though.  My Volvo was a street car with mostly brake and suspension work on it.  The engine was pretty stock early on.  I soon found out all the Volvo and Mini drivers had done a lot more work on their cars after driving school, because it wasn't so easy to win after that first race in the rain.

    When I left the Army, I started to work on the engine.  One of my friends, James Taylor, was soon discharged from CIA service.  We worked for peanuts at Bud Weikert's garage in Blue Ridge Summit, PA. We met Bob Krokus and John Williams at Marlboro, both had Triumphs, TR-3 and TR-4.  Jim and I moved down to Falls Church, VA. to live in their house.  We called it "Misery Manor" and shared time in the attached two car garage prepping our cars for local races.

    Income was still not great, but I was able to learn a lot from the Triumphs and applied it to my Volvo.  Did a lot of head grinding on the kitchen table.  Needed a cam, called California to Isky cams, had a nice conversation with a man on the other end who agreed to send me a cam for my B18 engine.  When I asked who I was speaking with, he replied Ed.  That's how I got to make my engine almost unbeatable in B sedan.  Finished 2nd in region in 64, won regional championship B sedan in 65.  Was hired by Group 44 in late 65 for the 66 season.

    We were all in civilian dress code; suits, ties, etc. each day.  Very seldom did we wear any military clothes.  It was much more casual with the Kennedy group.  My guess he was for equal opportunity with the various military, just didn't like a lot of uniforms around.  We blended with the Secret Service on a daily basis.  Got to know the agents in charge of the President, First Lady, etc.

    Actually spent time at Camp David and Ft. Ritchie (the underground pentagon) as well.  Kennedy was very personable, had an air about him when he walked into a room.  The country seemed more united back then.  Life was good. Kingston trio was in, music could be understood.

Tony Adamowicz, Gary Wheeler, Tony a2z, Tony Adamowics, a2zRacer, Gary Wheeler, Tony Adamowicz







1      2      3       4      5      6      7      8      9      10    11    12    13    14    15    16    17    18    19    20    21    22    23    24    25

26    27    28    29    30    31    32    33    34    35   36    37    38    39    40    41    42    43    44    45    46    47    48    49    50

51    52    53    54    55    56    57    58    59    60   61    62    63    64    65    66    67    68    69    70    71    72    73    74    75

76    77    78    79    80    81    82    83    84    85   86    87    88    89    90    91    92    93    94    95    96    97    98    99    100

101  102  103  104  105  106  107  108  109