The New Orleans Military Officers’ Wives’ Club Krewe of CAMAN (Coast Guard, Army, Marine Corps, Air Force, Navy) entertained more than 350 active duty, reserve and retired military officers and their guests at its 45th annual ball Saturday evening at the New Orleans Marriott Hotel.
The ball’s theme was “Let Them Eat Cake” and featured numerous Marie Antoinette-themed gowns and period-inspired attire. In keeping with the theme, guests were afforded the opportunity to eat cake before dinner as well!
The festivities began with a welcome by ball captain Mrs. Janet Nagelin, wife of retired Navy Capt. Tom Nagelin. At the traditional sound of the captain’s whistle, the Marine Corps Band New Orleans entered and provided music to complement the theme and the national anthem. The band was led by Band Officer Chief Warrant Officer 2 Demarius Jackson. The New Orleans Military and Maritime Academy Cadet Color Guard presented the colors.
Next began the parade of past queens, including Mesdames Jeanne Black, Charleen Brazell, Kathi Callahan, Brenda Davis, Pat Kahn, Cori Kinnerup, Janet Nagelin, Terry Paulson, Tammy Prine and Martha Whitehead. Also parading were former kings. The royal promenade was followed by the 2017 queen, Mrs. Emily Davenport Trehubenko, escorted by her husband, retired Navy Capt. Eric Trehubenko.
Presentation of the 2018 royal maids followed, with each wearing a gold and rhinestone crown with a satin fur-trimmed mantle encrusted with sequins and rhinestones bearing the monogram of the service that each represented.
Representing the Coast Guard was Mrs. Angie Dailey, escorted by her husband, Capt. Bryan Dailey.
Representing the Army was Mrs. Theresa Crean, escorted by her husband, retired Col. Peter Crean.
Representing the Marine Corps was Mrs. Brenna Kinter, escorted by her husband, Lt. Col. George Kinter.
Representing the Air Force was Mrs. Angela Demarest, escorted by her husband, Lt. Col. Kenneth Demarest.
Representing the Navy was Mrs. Mona Weltmer, escorted by her husband, Cmdr. Micah Weltmer.
The identity of Queen CAMAN XLV, Pat Hackbarth, was revealed as she entered the ballroom. She was later joined by her husband, Marine Corps Col. Karl Hackbarth. The queen wore a vintage fitted ballgown of white organza encrusted with bugle beads. The bodice, yoke, shoulders and flame-shaped sleeves of gold lamé were topped with gold sequins, with a heart cutout in the center of the neckline. Her white velvet mantle was embellished with rhinestones, gold and silver sequins and crystals over a satin insert encircled with ermine. Her Alençon lace collar was embellished with rhinestones, gold and silver sequins and crystals.
The masked king, who escorted the queen on her traditional walk, was revealed to be retired Coast Guard Rear Adm. David Callahan. His majesty wore a white velvet tunic with gold braiding that featured rhinestones, sequins and beading. His mantle and cape matched that of the queen. He was later joined by his wife, Kathi. The court was assisted by the dukes from the Krewe of the Aquamarine Algiereens, retired Navy Capts. David Whiddon and Gary Bair, attired in aqua velvet capes.
Following dinner, a tableau was presented by HOKUM (Honorable Old Kings Under Medication). Keeping in the style of the evening, each represented Louis XVI in their own style while performing a witty skit to the tune of Allan Sherman’s “You Went the Wrong Way, Old King Louie.” This was accompanied by an original dance routine, with guillotine, that delighted the crowd.
Special guests were presented to their majesties. They included Rep. Jack and Mrs. Cindy Bergman, R-Mich.; Lt. Gen. Rex and Mrs. Rebecca McMillian, commander of the Marine Forces Reserve and Marine Forces North; Rear Adm. Paul and Dr. Mary Anne Thomas, commander Coast Guard District 8; Maj. Gen. Steven and Mrs. Susanne Ainsworth, commander of the Army’s 377th Theater Sustainment Command; and Rear Adm. John and Mrs. Valerie Okon, commander of Naval Meteorology and Oceanography Command.
Also presented were retired Marine Corps Lt. Gen. Richard and Mrs. Patricia Mills; retired Marine Corps Maj. Gen. David and Mrs. Jane Mize; retired Navy Rear Adm. J.D. and Mrs. Carol Olsen; retired Army National Guard Maj. Gen. Walter and Mrs. Terry Paulson; retired Navy Rear Adm. Tommy Rinard; retired Navy Rear Adm. Jonathan and Mrs. Lisa White; retired Navy Rear Adm. Joel and Mrs. Martha Whitehead; and Mr. Robert and Mrs. Debbie Braithwaite, retired Senior Executive Service.
The evening concluded with dancing and the customary lighted king cake paraded at midnight.
Prior to the ball were the performances of several Kurt Weill and Jacques Brel pieces, performed by chanteurs Robert Schaefer and George Trahanis, accompanied by Jesse Reeks on accordion and piano. Guests perused and bid on silent auction items and enjoyed a Versailles-themed photo booth.
Special thanks were extended to the Greater New Orleans Council of the Navy League, the Naval Order of the United States and several local individuals and businesses that have supported the krewe and local military personnel.