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 JUNE - 2018

As you read this recall that it is our 70th reunion issue.  I find it difficult to accept that we graduated in 47/48, seventy years ago, probably because I never gave any thought to the possibility of living 93 plus years.  Looking back over my life I am grateful and content.  I must admit though that the Navy today is not the Navy I spent my career in and I’m not certain I would want to start over today.  Betty and I feel that we have been blessed and we pray that you feel the same.

When Helen Lansden saw all the media coverage of the terrible weather we were having last week she called to check up on us, bless her heart.  Happily we could tell her that we had power and the snow never reached the predicted levels (it is all gone today, 3/24/18.  Her call made Betty and me think back to the late ‘90s when Baylor and Helen invited us to visit for Mardi Gras.  When we accepted they went “all stops to full stop” to make certain we had the full experience.  We visited the factories where the floats are made and stored; we went downtown and watched the parades and attended the Endymion party in the Superdome (15000 people, formal) and the Rex Ball (my first and only time in white tie and tails.)  Betty and I agree that Baylor and Helen gave us a highlight of our lives and we relive it every Mardi Gras.  Helen told us that their attic was full of “throws” and I asked her what she did with all that stuff when she sold the house.  She says that only recently there is now a place where all that stuff can be turned in to be recycled.

A few years after our visit our daughter was the Food Service Manager at a nursing home in Manassas and she asked Helen if she would send some of the beads etc. which she would put on the tables during Mardi Gras.  Helen did and the residents were really thrilled.  Some of those women wore them, particularly the Endymion necklaces, until they passed on.

Some of what follows is included in this column for those of you without, or uninterested in, computers because I’ve already sent the material to my email distribution.  I do believe you will find it of interest.

Wendy Looker is the second cousin of R.D. Reem. She has been doing family research on Bob and his Medal of Honor from the Korean War.  She says Bob is given admirable mention in a new book about the war and the loss of aviator Jesse Brown.  The book is entitled “Devotion”.  She has received an email through the Korean project that they still had some spots to fill on the upcoming Korea revisit in April. This is held once a year. That email follows:

The South Korean government invites you to travel to South Korea and wishes to honor you for your loved one’s sacrifice.

The Revisit Korea Program For Families of Korean War MIA/KIA Servicemen was established by the Ministry of Patriots and Veterans Affairs (MPVA) of the Republic of Korea (South Korea) in 2015.

The program’s purpose is to convey the deep gratitude of the Korean people to the families of all the American fallen heroes of the Korean War, both Killed in Action (KIA) and Missing in Action (MIA). It is also an opportunity for the families of these fallen heroes to honor their loved ones and to represent their sacrifice to the people of South Korea.  It is the hope of this program that the families’ personal sacrifices and deep sense of loss may be eased by witnessing how the people of South Korea truly appreciate and enjoy the peace and prosperity made possible by their loved ones.

 Scribes note:  by the time you read this Wendy will have returned from her trip and I have asked her to give us a follow up on her experience.

Craig and Theresa Olson were recently inurned at the columbarium and his daughters report that the service was very, very nice.  It was so impressive. His grandson, Patrick, received the flag.  

When Charlie Mertz recently called and told me that due to health problems he did not feel comfortable standing in front of large group to make our IT award.  I called Phil Rogers and Phil turned to former Dean Bill Miller, whom you should remember we made an honorary member of the Class.  He has graciously agreed to make the presentation for the Class.  He will also represent the Class at the dedication of Hopper Hall.  Warren and Phil have also approved the increase of the IT award to $3000 going to the graduate with the highest GPA.  The first award at that amount will go to the Class of 2019.

Another item for the non-email folks:  From Charles Miko, 6thCo.

Recently, while thumbing through my son-in-law’s copy of SHIPMATE, I felt a pang of regret.  When I came upon your accounting of classmates who remained in contact, I realized that I was responsible for one of the blanks. Please allow me to fill it.

Following graduation, I spent two years at sea with Service Force Pacific and the next 21 years completing the usual train of submarine related assignments leading to Division Command.

 In 1970, with the arrival of our first grandchild, Sally and I heard a different drummer.  I retired from active duty on the first day I was eligible to do so in the rank of Captain and returned to graduate school to prepare for a new career.  During the next twenty years, we finished the task of getting our five children off to a good start, we indulged in our passion for sailing and I enjoyed helping several hundred bright young minds wrap around the wonders of mathematics and physics.

Our third career must be labeled, “US”. We continued sailing for a number of years, we travelled and we watched as our family made us proud.

We are now settled in our lakeside home surrounded by the beautiful Great Smoky Mountains of Western North Carolina. Last June 6th, we celebrated out 70thwedding anniversary.

Over the years, the “Attaboys”, the plaques, the photos and all, save three, of the mementos of Navy life have been replaced with things more current.

Over the desk is a Naval Academy pennant; reminder of some past football game, a small bronze submarine paper weight, a reminder of a happy command, and a fuzzy little goat, a reminder of a past Arm/Navy game party.  From time to time, all three serve as props of outrageous sea stories told to one or two of our thirteen wide eyed great grandchildren.

Since the last column I have learned of the passing of two Classmates:
         14thCo.  Wilkie, J.E.                  2/10/13
         15thCo.  Chapline,  E.M.            3/16/18

An email from Paul Riley about Ed.

 “Ed died Fri. Mar 16 in Scottsdale, AZ at his vacation home.  It was from pneumonia following a fall which had incapacitated him.  Ed was a close friend  We served together on MISSOURI, then went to Pensacola and Corpus Christi where we roomed together in an apartment while he learned to fly seaplanes and I fighters. I was then drafted into the unwanted VS business from which I later escaped by volunteering for Korea while Ed ironically escaped from his seaplane crew just before they crashed by volunteering for VS.  We had a reunion with a TBM “Turkey” at the Pima museum in Tucson a few years ago.  Ed and I have always planned to be the last classmates standing.  Now the only thing to do is to carry on in his memory.  Ed was a staunch supporter of the alumni assn.  His motto was that he had converted from a philanderer to a philanthropist.  Sadly, Paul Riley.

The Wilkie’s death prompted Rhona Gorder to send a picture of the Gorders, Goodwins and Wilkies with some very fond words of many escapades they had shared together and the statement, “I really liked these people.  I shall miss them."

From left to right- Rhona Gorder, John Wilkie, Joan Wilkie, Chuck Gorder, Fran Goodwin, George Goodwin

From Girard W. “Jerry” Moore, Jr. ‘s youngest son.  Mom died of Alzheimer’s 11/6/17 but she still knew dad most days.  What a blessing since she didn’t know me for the last two and a half years of her life.  Under the circumstances, Dad is doing well.  He’s exercising again after not doing it much after Mom had gall bladder surgery and then fell and broke her hip a few years back.  Dad was still teaching tennis before her gall bladder surgery.  Dad has been getting Shipmate magazines from Jack Drago, USNA graduate, for a couple of years.  Jack gives them to Dad after he reads them.  Dad looks forward to reading them each time he gets them and saves them for me to review.  Dad’s apartment phone is (305) 253-6521.  His address is 19925 S.W. 87thAvenue, Apt 1228, Cutler Bay, Florida  33157.

A final note, Bob McClinton reports that team INTREPID/WEIGH TO GO has raised $102,167 for Volunteer Hospice in 16 races, 2002-2017.

Scribe’s note- you guys/gals do good work Bob. Keep it up