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SITREP: April 2003

By Dan Shea

Those readers who have followed my work over the years understand that much of it is due to the diligence and help of other very knowledgeable people. I am appreciative of that help, and that brings us around to a tragedy that is happening to one of the great friends of the small arms community.

The former Custodian of the British Ministry Of Defence Pattern Room, Mr. H. J. “Bert” or “Herb” Woodend has contracted a nasty form of cancer. He left the UK where the medical care is substandard for many, and came to the good old “USA”, and he has been in treatment. Unfortunately, he bears the full price; there is no insurance to help defray the costs. He may lose his home over this. That’s the bad news. The good news is that at present the treatments are going well, and that a group of his friends have put together a raffle to help with his medical expenses. We at the Small Arms Review are not running this, but I personally made a donation, as did others.

Those who are running this event have issued the following directive and I thought that it should be passed on to the readers of SAR as quickly as possible. Herb helped me many times, it is the least I can do to help him now. Please don’t contact SAR or me on this; it is entirely their project. Here is their announcement:

Announcing the HERB WOODEND MACHINE GUN RAFFLE. We have three prizes: •HK 51 registered sear gun (donated by Dan Shea)
•M16A1 Colt (donated by Kent Lomont)
•1928A1 WH Thompson (donated by Bob Landies)

This is entirely about inviting donations to Herb Woodend to help him cover his medical expenses. None of us has an equity interest in what goes on, only an interest in helping Herb out. The prizes are 100% donated ... nobody is reimbursed, period, so 100% of your donation goes to Herb’s medical bills.

Tickets are $50 each (12 tickets for $500 donation, and 25 tickets for $1000.)

We are printing only 1,000 tickets, so figure the odds for yourself. First prize is first choice of guns, second prize is a choice of what’s left, and third prize is, well, what’s left. We’ll draw June 1, 2003 or sooner if all the tickets go faster. Winners selected by random drawing. Those of us monitoring or donating are not eligible to win.

You can get ALL the fine print we put together on it under

You can also help by sending me pictures of Herb; your own testimonials that might help everyone to see that it’s worth kicking in to help him out.

Management of this raffle is something of a ‘stone soup’ operation, so riding herd on activities and reporting to the world are:
Whit Engel
Tom Bowers
Jim Purtilo

Our job is to put our credibility on the line in letting you know this is on the up-and-up. We’re monitoring it all and will report all that goes on. HOW TO DONATE:

Write your most generous check directly to HERB WOODEND and mail it to:
Engel Ballistic Research, Inc.
ATTN.: Herb Woodend Raffle
544A Alum Creek Road
Smithville, Texas 78957

Include your email address and Whit will confirm your ticket numbers accordingly. If you really want ticket stubs sent back, then you can help by including an SASE with your check.

For more information call Whit Engel at 512-360-5327, or send email to



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