SEC’Y: CAPT Dave Carruth, USN (Ret.)

                                                7206 Danford Lane; Springfield, VA  22152

                                                 P: 703-569-1354   E: slipstk@aol.com

                                       WEBMASTER: John Tsiknas

                      15644 Caldas De Reyes, San Diego, CA  92128

                                                                                                E: johntsiknas@sbcglobal.net

                                                                                         WEB SITE: usna.com/classes/1948

 

CLASS OF 1948 SHIPMATE COLUMN

DECEMBER 2007

 

 

     Here in the Washington/Annapolis area the Class of ’48 has 111 Classmates.  We have luncheons on the second Friday of the odd months skipping July.  Many years back we asked our wives to join us at all of the luncheons and our attendance is usually around 40 people plus.  I always took pictures and gave them to Sumner, at first sending prints by snail mail then electronically, he frequently sent a few along with the column and Shipmate published some of them.  I will continue to take pictures and submit a few to shipmate, but all will be posted on our home page in sparkling color. Our September luncheon was attended by 47 Classmates and wives.  You can see pictures on the web site.  Those on hand were, Rose & Jim Ahern; Carolyn & George Ball; Courtenay & Bill Bass; Mary & Jim Beggs; Marion & Don Buhrer; Betty & Dave Carruth; Louise & Jack Conable; Libby & Cab Davis; Patty & Tony Duncan; Glenys & John Dyer; Toni & John Fry; Greta & Pete Goldman; Marguerite & Charlie Heid; Alice & Tom O’Connor; Barbara & Warren Ortland; Dolly & John Rasmussen; Elizabeth & Bill Reed; Helga & Bob Smith; Mary & Ed Stacy; Eddie Welsh with Diana Keenan.  Single were, Harold Andrus; Bill Arnold; Hank Corley; Warren Graham; Rosemary Hogg; Cliff Morgan and Craig Olson.       

            Here in Washington we also have the USNAAA-Greater Washington Chapter which has monthly luncheons and always has an excellent speaker.   Hal Deeley, Paul Borlaug and I used to go every month but slowly we have wandered away.  The reason I bring this up is to once again ask those of you who have class luncheons, or if a you attend one of your local Chapter meetings in your area please give me an input including pictures though they are not essential.  I know Norfolk has Class luncheons because Sumner occasionally attended.  I suspect San Diego has a cohesive Class group.  I solicit correspondence.  In my pursuit of this item I read through all the Chapter news to see if any ’48 people were mentioned.  I found one, Jim Sizer attended a meeting of the Detroit Michigan Chapter.  The Class has no other noted representation in any other chapter in the nation. 

            John Fry is in far better shape than most of us as witnessed by his winning, for the 4th year in a row, the 10 mile “Old Goat’s” race.  Old Goats are defined as those graduating at least 20 years ago.  On 8/27/07 John won the trophy for the Fastest Oldest Goat coming in at 2:22:18.  This is an RRCA-sanctioned event with over 5000 participants, according to Runner’s World the sixth best 10 mile race in the country.  There were 130 alumni registered.  John says “with the high heat and humidity it was tough.”  There is more on our web site www.USNA.com/classes/1948. 

            For obvious reasons I’m still catching up with news from Classmates.  In late May Jack McCord wrote to tell me he and Mary K. were on their way to Northern Ireland with a stop to visit  Nan Baughman in North Carolina.  They were going to do some genealogy research associated with the McCord exodus from Scotland via Ireland to Pennsylvania about 1720 AD.

            Another Ireland bound person is Rosemary Hogg, she leaves on the 17th of Oct. for a two week tour in that beautiful country.  Betty and I were there several years ago and were very impressed though Betty was unimpressed by blood pudding. 

            Another genealogy report from Bob Ghormley in response to a question I asked about the spelling of R.H. Gormley, someone had addend an “H”.   Bob responded “my records are far from perfect but I found the following—R.H. Ghormley should be without the “H”.   The “H” was put in the name about 1749 to distinguish the Protestant branch from the Catholic branch of the family.  All Ghormleys in this country can trace their ancestry back to one person who arrived in Northern Ireland about 1759.”

            Many years ago in Scotland my name was Carraig.  How it got to be Carruth I have no clue.

            Last month I reported the passing of Art Markel on 25 Aug. ’07.  Art had quite a career.  Quoting from his obituary in the Richmond Times Dispatch-“Art joined Reynolds Metals as VP Research Director and Captain of the Aluminaut (currently on display at the Science Museum of Virginia), one of the deepest-diving research submarines ever created.  Under his command, the Aluminaut gained fame in the location and recovery of the H-bomb lost off the coast of Spain.  During that same operation, the Aluminaut assisted in the recovery of the Navy’s deep-diving submarine, DSV Alvin.”  In recognition of these exploits Art was made a member of the Exploreres Club of New York.  He is another example of ’48s contribution to society.  We rate saying ’48 is Great.

            Here is one for your books, Craig Olson and his great grandson, Connor, have both had open heart surgery this year.  Craig had a multiple bypass from which he has bounced back at a rate which amazed the medics and Betty and me.  The quick bounce may have been aided by the fact that his surgeon did the surgery on a beating heart.  Connor, he’ll be 2 on the 14th of Oct., was born with a hole in the ventricular septum. This is not a rare occurrence but they usually heal on their own.   This one did not so the doctors went in and repaired it.  Connor, like his great grandfather, is doing just fine.

            And while we are on the good hospital reports here is one from Chris Christoph--- I went into the hospital at seven in the morning before the 4th of July, fully believing the doctors who said that I would be home by noon.  I was told that during the angiogram they might have to put in a stent, which is no big deal.  I watched the whole procedure on a monitor and when I saw what they saw, I understood why they said that I wouldn’t be leaving the hospital any time soon.  Seven days later I was out of there after a quadruple bypass.  I was walking a mile within three weeks after coming home.  My cardiologist told me that at a month and a half I was where he expected an 80 year old to be in six.  Maybe he tells that to all his patient, but it was a great morale booster.  The biggest problem I had was not being able to drive for three weeks.  Very frustrating having Gerry drive me everywhere.  The doctors have told me that my heart is now good for ten to fifteen years, but unfortunately there is no guarantee on the rest of the parts. 

            This is part of an exchange between me and Beau Buck-  Beau says “I feel that I am one of the luckiest ‘48ers in the pack.  In my last tour in the Navy (Kittery Sub yard) the fellow I relieved out of ’45 (Scott Daubin) died early from radiation poisoning on an experiment with ALBACORE, and another of my best friends (Phil Allen ’46) relieved me when I resigned and had my post as shipyard rider on THRESHER on her last dive.  Lastly, 28 years of acoustic research in the Central Arctic and my over -35 times up there brought on no serious accidents I nor any of my men suffered.  Lucky? Your betcha.”

            On 29 Sept. Marguerite and Charlie Heid hosted the Wardroom of his old Seabee Battalion, 38 to 40 husbands and wives.  Lots of work, lots of fun, friendships renewed and old tales retold.  Good show.

           

            Sorry to report that since the last column we have lost:

                        16th Co. Buechler, R.R.         4 Apr. ’24-10 Oct. ‘07

                        11Co.  Harrison, J.L.                        6 Sept. ‘23-9 Sept. ‘07

                        7th Co. McDermutz, W.E.                 16 May ‘07

                        18th Co.  Neely, R.R.              6 Dec. ‘23-25 Sept.’07

            Wives      Connie Bates                                   7 Oct. ‘07

                            Mary McDermutz                           6 March ‘07

                           Jeanie Pritchard                                19 Sept.’07

We offer our deepest condolences to the families.

As a matter of interest I have started listing birth and death dates.  Birth dates I find in the 1999 Register of Alumni because the 2003 Register doesn’t list them.  I ran into a problem with McDermutz because he didn’t make the 1999 Register.  He is in the 2003 edition.

            Reunion your reunion committee is now trying to tabulate your responses to our mailing asking for your commitment to attend the reunion or at least provide the personal data requested to go into a new class roster.  As of this writing (10/07/07) one hundred forty five of you have responded to the 672 letters which were sent out.  I hope by the time you read this more classmates have responded but Don Buhrer says he is only receiving three of four a week.  “Yes” responses so far number 80.  As a reminder we have asked the hotel to set aside 125 rooms and the cut-off date for reservations is 5/08/08.

            As you read this we are into the Holiday season and very rapidly approaching another year.  Betty and I pray that your holiday will be wonderful and that the New Year will be as good as possible for our 80+ year old group and for our Nation.  Our warmest regards to each of you.

 

Dave