Peter Visel

Webmaster, Past President, Estrella Warbirds Museum

Peter D. Visel

Peter Visel was raised in a large family from the midwest who believed in serving their country. His father was an aeronautical engineer (A&P) with the Navy during WWW II. His oldest brother Rob, served with the Marines in Okinawa, second and third oldest brothers served with the Army in Viet Nam, while two of his younger brothers served in the Air Force, one graduating from the AF Academy and spent his career tracking satellites and surveillance (as does his wife-whom outranked him when he retired) and the other, a heavy equipment operator in England. One of his older sisters served as a nurse in the Army, assigned to the US Army Hospital, Augsburg, Germany at the same time Peter was assigned to the HQ, US Army Medical Command, Europe. Peter's wife, Candy, served with the Navy. Current totals: Navy - 2, Marines -1, Air Force - 3, Army - 4. Go Army!

Peter Visel

Peter served from 1971 through 1977, had his orders for Vietnam rescinded with the phase-down (the day he was signing out of his unit bound for Vietnam), and spent the next 6 1/2 years in Europe with the Operations and Intelligence Division of the HQ, US Army Medical Command Europe, the Chief Surgeon's Office (Heidelberg, Germany) and a short stint in between HQ commands with the 45th Field Hospital (on the Italian Riviera). He served as a Liaison between the State Department, US and Foreign Embassies, and the General Hospital units providing medical care for special foreign nationals (heads of state, etc). He worked on special projects consolidating medical care for the Army and Air Force in Europe and the Middle East following the end of Doctor Draft after the Vietnam phase-down. His last military assignment was the Nuclear Surety Liaison for the Chief Surgeon and the Commander in Chief, US Army Europe, as part of the Nuclear Surety Program, monitoring medical privacy and accessibility issues for units working with or around nuclear weapons throughout the European area.

His love of being airborne began when he was in first grade, at which time his father took all 10 of his siblings at the time, on a "Penny a Pound" experience flight over the hometown and family farm. It was the best $16.48 investment his father ever passed on to his children, giving them a lifetime love for flying.

Peter recently retired from TEK Systems, Inc., havingl spent the last six years at State Farm Corporate, as a digital user interface designer and prototyper of next generation web programs. Previously, he served as the Business Development and Marketing Manager for Santa Maria Software, an industry leader specializing in providing dealer management software to the PowerSports and motorcycle industries.

In addition, Mr. Visel served for ten years as the Information Systems Manager and Facilities/Operations Manager, for the world's largest provider of research antibodies, Santa Cruz Biotechnology. During his tenure, Mr. Visel retained overall responsibility for all national and international corporate IT operations to include multiple web sites which, at the time accounted for over a million hits every day.

In 1990, Peter founded SeeWord Technology, an Apple Value Added Reseller, providing on-site sales and service to medium to large companies in the Santa Cruz County. Mr. Visel was recruited to be a co-founder, part owner, and General Manager for The Apple User Group Store, Soquel, California, a subsiderary of the Apple User Group Connection, which spun off from Apple Computer, to provide support for Apple affinity groups.

Peter Visel was also the owner and founder of a part time business, SeeWord Graphics, in Santa Cruz, California during 1986-1988. Although the business started as a hobby, he concentrated on the Desktop Publishing market designing brochures, marketing materials, business helps, for friends and family. The hobby grew as a direct result of technical advances by Apple Computer and his association with companies such as Adobe. Due to his reputation with his peers and support he developed during those years, he felt there was a real need to reorganize the business to a more technical side of desktop publishing and SeeWord Technology was born in the early part of 1990. Through the early years of internet e-commerce, his business quickly went "global" with numerous customers from throughout the U.S., Europe, Africa and the Middle East.

Peter is an avid world wide traveler, whether it was for work or pleasure. He has lived, not just in the United States, but spent five years living in Germany and two in Italy. During his life span, his passport has been stamped in over 76 countries and his size 11 1/2 shoes have kicked up the dust in 49 of the United States. It's a small world, after all! During his "free time" from 1989 through 2006, Peter served as the Missions Pastor and then Pastor of the Elm Street Mission of Santa Cruz, which services the area street population. His missions work has also taken him on numerous construction related projects in Papua New Guinea, Peru, Brazil, Madagascar, Israel, amoung others.

Peter and his wife Candy have raised three daughters and two sons. They have two very sweet grand daughters. Although their own children have grown and "flown the coop", the "empty nest" syndrome is no more. He and his wife enjoy raising exotic birds & fowl, especially the talking and squawking kind. New born chicks, talking, singing, screaming and whistling birds have filled their home with more noises then children ever could. If you ever wonder why they might be hard of hearing... now you know.

Since 2006, Peter has served as the EWM WebMaster, EWM Facebook admin, and served as Vice-President 2008-2009 and Board President, 2009-2010.

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