Shipmate: September/October 2015 5 August 2015Posted by USNA Class of 1976 in Shipmate.
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by Mark Hubbard
This summer is flying by. I suppose that my back surgery on July 20th contribute to losing track of time, with the affects of general anesthesia and painkillers that numb one’s perception of time and space. I have come out of the “fog of anesthesia” and now look forward to a new life without chronic sciatic pain. Oh, the marvels of modern medical science!
I received “newbie” news submission from Jim Sanford:
I don’t think I have EVER submitted anything for Shipmate, so here goes. I retired from the Navy in 2003 after Commanding HAWES, served as Reactor Officer in THEODORE ROOSEVELT, and serving as the COMNAVAIRLANT Force Nuclear Propulsion Officer. I now work for a defense contractor near Pittsburgh, PA. Patti and I live in Eighty Four, PA, a small town with the first 84 Lumber Yard, the 84 Lumber HQ, one traffic light, two gas stations, a Subway, a pharmacy, and Danny Junior’s Pizza. Life is good on our ten acres on the side of a hill, especially for ham radio. Last weekend, Patti & I, along with Stephanie and Jay Gardiner (who live north of Pittsburgh) drove to Ipswich, MA, for the wedding of Rocky Raher’s daughter, Amy. I took hundreds of pictures, I’ll be sending a few, for use as you see fit, or not. BTW, one of the things I’m involved in at work is recruiting. If any Classmates know of engineers looking for employment, please send me their resume!
Here’s another update from fellow 26th Company mate, Mark Metalf:
Well, semi-retirement in Charlottesville is managing to keep me busier than ever. In May I traveled to Newport to present an invited paper on China’s use of standardization in warship construction at a conference sponsored by the Naval War College’s China Maritime Studies Institute (CMSI) and the Naval Institute. Interacting with some real experts on the PLA Navy was a great experience, but having an excuse to spend two months before the conference translating, analyzing, and writing was what really made it all worthwhile.
In June it was off to Taiwan to present a paper at an academic conference on how contemporary PRC military texts apply Sunzi’s ‘Art of War’ to modern warfare. Since Ben (recently appointed head coach of his pro basketball team) has lived & worked in Taiwan for the past eight years, Terry & I turned the visit into a 10-day family vacation, also bringing our daughter, Amy, along for the trip. There have definitely been a lot of changes since Terry & I graduated from high school in Taipei during the early 1970s.
Finally, in July it was back to Minnesota for a family reunion, so we took the ‘long way’ and spent a leisurely four days driving across the picturesque Michigan Upper Peninsula. On the way back we passed through Eureka, Illinois, and had an all-too-brief visit with Mike Thurwanger. Mike’s currently on the faculty of Eureka College where he’s also the director of the college’s Ronald Reagan Leadership Program. We also took the opportunity to reminisce about the “character building” (i.e., Princess Bride caliber rodents) nine-week foreign exchange cruise that Mike, Joe Bouchard, and I spent aboard the ex-USS Maddox with the Republic of China Navy a mere 40 years (!) earlier.
Here’s an update from Gary Greenfield:
Brittany finished her first year of b-school at MIT Sloan in May, which gave her the unique opportunity to participate in an international Bordeaux blind tasting competition with two of her classmates. Created by the Commandiere du Bontemps in 2000 to promote Left Bank Bordeaux wine amongst those in their 20’s (to get away from its perception as stodgy), the Left Bank Bordeaux Cup brings together the top 2 teams from the US, France, Europe and Asia for finals in Bordeaux in June. After qualifying at the regionals at the French Consulate in NY in January (during a blizzard nonetheless), the Sloan team was invited to Bordeaux for a 3-day tour of being wined and dined by the top chateaus of the Left Bank. The week culminated with the finals in the barrel room of Chateau Lafite Rothschild, which Brittany has described as “Hunger Games for Wine Tasting.” While Sloan did not take home the Cup, they saw the real prize as being able to participate in the trip – and enjoy the party after!
That’s all the news I have this time. I am glad to be home recovering from my back surgery and want to personally thank my doctor, Myles Brager, and the staff at Carroll Hospital Center (Westminster, MD) for taking such great care of me!
See you at the Navy Tailgaters!!! GO NAVY!!!
Shipmate: Membership and Services 2015 8 July 2015Posted by USNA Class of 1976 in Shipmate.
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by Mark Hubbard
Barb and I had the opportunity to see the Macy’s fireworks display on the 4th of July this year. I had to postpone my back surgery (“Lumbar Decompression and Spinal Fusion with Instrumentation”) a month (now July 20th) but it was worth it! We drove up from New Market to Brooklyn after picking up my son, Chris, at his Baltimore row home to spend the holiday weekend with daughter Meghan and her husband, Jared Marinos USMA’05. While in NYC we rendezvoused with Jim Doherty and his wife, Melanie, and their daughter, Bobbie, at The Smith Midtown restaurant for lunch on the 4th. They had their Coast Guard Academy cadet that they sponsor with them as well, Jason Kniss USCGA’17. Doc’s NYC co-op apartment is just around the corner from The Smith Midtown, one of our favorite restaurants in Manhattan. After lunch, Barb and I hopped on a taxi back to Brooklyn to rejoin with Meghan, Jared and Chris at Pier 5 Brooklyn Bridge Park to find a spot to view the fireworks along with thousands of other people. Jared’s parents, Pam and Jim Marinos met up with us, too. It was a good thing that we arrived three hours before the fireworks began because the pier became totally packed with the throng of spectators. The wait was worth it because we were treated to one of the best fireworks displays I have ever seen, especially with the Manhattan skyline as a background. [You can see a good video of the 2015 Macy’s Fireworks] I am adding the Fourth of July Washington D.C. Fireworks to my bucket list because I understand that is also spectacular to witness.
Here is an update from 1/4 of the Class of 76’s naval architects:
The French, in search of a good reason for a party, sent a replica of Lafayette’s flagship, the frigate Hermione, to several US east coast cities in June. She’s shown here rendering honors with a DDG. Several of your naval artichokes decided it was worth a visit. First up was Yorktown where Tenley and Larry Raithel have recently taken up residence. Here’s a shot of Larry on the main deck. In addition to visiting the Hermione, the Raithels hosted a delegation from Yorktown’s Sister City, Port-Vendres, France, for the salad course of a progressive dinner, with fine California wines. All came together nicely given the Raithel’s naval lineage; Larry’s and his dad’s (Al Raithel ’51) family lineage goes back to the town of Rethel, France. The Raithels have recently renovated a late 1800’s home in the middle of Historic Yorktown and it is open for classmate visits!
Next up was good old Annapolis. Barbara and Kevin Stone decided it was worth waiting over an hour to view the ship (well, at least Kevin did). While they were waiting patiently up strolls Mike Bosworth who was a volunteering entertaining the visitors with details about the ship. The photo shows Kevin and Mike, who is full 1700’s sailor regalia, in front of the Hermione. Kevin was a practicing naval architect for 25 years while Mike is still going strong at NAVSEA on the LCS program. Mike, while not otherwise engaged in ship design, is in a “Sea Shanty” group that performs in the region.
[Scribe Note: The original Hermione was part of the blockade at the Battle of the Virginia Capes that led to the British surrender, ending the American Revolution.]
Deer and motorcycles do not mix at all! Just ask Tim Farrell:
On April 29 I hit a deer while riding my motorcycle. The bike and I didn’t go down but I broke my left leg, tibial plateau fracture. I didn’t need surgery, but the Orthopedists told me that I had to keep my leg immobilized and not put weight on it for six weeks. I did such a good job following Doctors’ orders that Memorial Day weekend I developed deep vein thrombosis and bilateral pulmonary embolism and spent my first nights since birth in a hospital. Today the Orthopedist told me I was healed and I got my bike back. On June 18 Scott Jenkins and I met for our quarterly boys’ night out at Sullivan’s Steakhouse King of Prussia, PA.
[Scribe Note: I remain amazed to this day that Barb and I were unscathed after we hit a large deer on my motorcycle several years ago on Mussetter Road near the Holly Hills Country Club in Ijamsville, MD! The only injury was to the poor deer who hobbled off into the woods.]
On June 13th, Seventh Company Seadogs gathered at the home of Chris and Bill Ostendorff in Oakton, VA, for a mini-reunion to mark Kara and Randy Pinetti’s “first ever” venturing out to the East Coast from their base in the San Francisco Bay area. Other attendees included: Stephanie and Jay Gardiner, Geraldine and Frank Inzirillo, Joelle and Wayne Jakubowski, Janice and Calvin Langford, Barb and Chuck Renner, Patti and Jim Sanford, and Bunny and Dave Venlet. Participating via cell phone/video were Dean Dobbert from Ohio and Ernie Leidiger and Ike Owens over lunch from San Diego. Of significant interest to the group was the sharing of “never before heard midshipmen tales” involving Ernie and Randy.
I received late news from Phil Poirier:
Tim Traaen and Phil Poirier were proud to represent the Class on a beautiful San Diego day on July 2nd at Naval Base San Diego for the presentation of Class of ’76 Leadership Awards to LTJG Megan Myers and STG1 Brennan Lukas of USS HIGGINS (DDG-76). We were fortunate to be squeezed in the awards ceremony just a few days before Higgins deployed. The CO, CDR Allen P. Johnson ‘97, expressed his gratitude to the Class including its sponsorship of numerous sailors for the recent Poinsettia Bowl, and looks forward to reestablishing an ongoing relationship between the ship and the Class of ’76.
Bryan Dolan is looking for any interested cyclers in our Class that might be planning any bicycle trips in the USA or elsewhere in the near future or next year. If interested, please email Bryan at: Bryan Dolan <firstname.lastname@example.org>
On a final note, I received news that one of our Classmates, Paul Stimson, succumbed to ALS, otherwise known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, on Wednesday, June 10th. Paul Stimson is the son of a highly decorated World War II submarine commander, Paul Stimson Sr. ’36. Paul Stimson left the Naval Academy after 2 years and began pursuing other things like skydiving and captaining sailing boats along the Florida Coast and to the Bahamas. His pursuits for adventure and physical pursuits included bike riding, rock & ice climbing, team skydiving, slalom skiing, surfing and scuba diving. He got married to Mary Jane in 1990, a year after moving to Sonoma County where he worked as a land surveyor. He took his illness in stride and never complained. In addition to his wife, Paul is survived by his mother, Emily Stimson of Largo, FL; sisters Emily Maney of Indian Rocks Beach, FL, and Katheryn Stimson of Largo, FL; and three nephews. Our thought and prayers go out to Mary Jane and the extended family.
Bonus Pictures Shipmate: July/August 2015 29 May 2015Posted by USNA Class of 1976 in Photos, Shipmate.
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Shipmate: July/August 2015 29 May 2015Posted by USNA Class of 1976 in Shipmate.
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by Mark Hubbard
Getting ready to enter the hot days of summer. My wife, Barb, and I decided to acclimate ourselves to the hot and humid weather typical of Maryland in the summer by spending a week in the Bahamas in April, and a long weekend in Cancun, Mexico. Well, it sounds like a good excuse to spend the money on travel, but we did enjoy ourselves! The mailbox is a bit light this time so let’s move on to the latest from the Class of ’76:
I received another update from Greg Vaughn:
In late February, I flew out to San Diego on Business and had a chance to spend a wonderful evening with 36th Company Classmates and their wives – Kris and Randy Large and Janet and Brad Speer. We gathered together at Kris and Randy’s beautiful home in Scripp’s Ranch and had a great time – mostly talking about the next reunion and what exciting trips we’d like to plan for ourselves before we get too old to travel with abandon. Left to right in the photo taken in the Large’s home is: Janet, Brad, Kris, and Randy. All are enjoying life in San Diego. Randy is retired and committed to physical fitness using some pretty cool toys and Brad is still employed and now working for General Atomics in Torrey Pines. (I also ran into Brad on Monday, 18 May at a conference at the Office of Naval Research in Arlington, VA.)
More recently in April, I had a chance to play hooky from work and join classmate Jim McKee on Worden Field to watch and photograph one of the Spring Parades. A beautiful but windy day, I’ve never seen so many Mids marching without a cover. I took a photo of Jim McKee with Maryland Governor Larry Hogan’s photographer while we were waiting for the parade to start. Hogan was the reviewing official for the parade. His ‘orders’ were “Beat Army.”
Even more recently and during this year’s Graduation Week, Jim and I met again at USNA to photograph the Blue Angels. We used their practice day on Tuesday, 19 May, to practice our own photography techniques and then returned again on Wednesday, 20 May, for the formal performance. I’ve included a couple shots taken from that event. Both days were great, despite predictions of bad weather on Tuesday. The Blue Angels have a great show and very glad that they are back for the second year at USNA since their recent hiatus.
In the future, hope to run into more classmates at this year’s bike ride across Iowa (RAGBRAI). It’s the last full week of July and I will definitely get photos if two or more of our classmates are gathered somewhere along the route. I would expect Craig McDonald to be there and perhaps Mark Benson.
All the best you and our classmates for a safe and wonderful summer!
Bruce Hinkley writes:
Attached is a photo of myself with my nephew LT Dan Hinkley who was selected for the all Navy Soccer team. I was able to watch them defeat the USMC team at Miramar in May. Dan’s Dad is the oldest son of my brother, CAPT Brian Hinkley ’83.
I had the opportunity to meet Medal of Honor recipient, Kyle White, at the Memorial Day Event held at NASA/GSFC in Greenbelt, MD, on Thursday, May 21st. Kyle was the keynote speaker and recounted the fateful day in Afghanistan in November 9, 2007, when he faced the enemy in an almost insurmountable ambush and was able to save several of his fellow soldiers by “just doing what I was trained to do”! A very humble man but a true leader and hero, Kyle’s medal was well deserved!
Mike Seifert has some 40th Reunion information for the Class:
Classmates, hard as it is to believe we are approaching our 40th reunion. Planning is underway and we have locked in Sep 2-4, 2016 for the big event. For those that haven’t heard, Navy has joined the American Athletic Conference, formerly known as the Big East. The 2016 football schedule is not set yet but we have confirmed we will be playing a home game that weekend against Fordham. We will be using the Westin hotel as our base of operations and have reserved the N* room for the tailgate (same as we did for the 35th which went over so well). I am looking for people who would like to be on the planning committee as there are still a number of issues to decide. Please contact me directly at email@example.com if you are interested in assisting. Be watching for the fall Shipmate for additional details.
Kevin Stone also has information regarding the 40th:
OK classmates … it is time to start planning on attending our 5th, no 10th, no, I can’t bear to say it, 40th Reunion. It will be held on Labor Day Weekend and will largely follow the schedule of our very successful 35th: Thursday evening reception at a location TBD, dinner Friday night at the hotel (Westin), and tailgate on Saturday before/during the game in the N* room inside the stadium. Along with these “major” events we’ll have a Class meeting and election of officers, a brief from the Supe, a memorial service and a chance to relive your fondest memories of USNA: the P-Rade on Friday. More will follow so watch this space as well as your email. If you don’t get
Kevin’s regular emails you will miss the boat, so to speak. Go to http://www.usna.com and update your profile now! We cannot make the change for you.
On a final note, our heartfelt condolences go out to Pat Tracy, who suffered the loss of his Dad, on May 28th. Our thoughts and prayers are with you, Pat.
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Art Nalls ’76 from 16th Company, will be the number two airplane over the WWII Memorial and the National Mall at exactly 12:10.00
Art is carrying the ‘Flag, Well Traveled” that has been all over the world, and will add our photo, with Rear Admiral Ed “Whitey” Feightner, USN(ret) to the list. Adm Feightner, is a WWII Ace and was given his callsign by Butch O’Hare. He was also a Blue Angel twice – once as the first jet solo. He’s a member of the Society of Experimental Test Pilots and Art is proud to call him a friend.
Art has worked hard, to control the massive 85HP engine I have in the 1939 L-4 Cub, but as he describes it can land it without embarrassment.
On Friday, May 8, 2015, to celebrate the 70th Anniversary of Victory in Europe (VE Day). The Arsenal of Democracy World War II Victory Capitol Flyover will include 15 historically sequenced warbird formations traveling across our nation’s capital-from the Lincoln Memorial to the Capitol. The Flyover will feature over 70 warbirds representing the major battles of World War II, from Pearl Harbor to D-Day, ending with a final Missing Man Formation to “Taps
Bonus Pictures Shipmate: May/June 2015 4 May 2015Posted by USNA Class of 1976 in Photos, Shipmate.
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Courtesy of Greg Vaughn from his visit to Chris and Judy Earl
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Shipmate: May/June 2015 22 April 2015Posted by USNA Class of 1976 in Uncategorized.
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by Mark Hubbard
I don’t have time to kibitz, so here’s the latest news!
Charles L Dirienzo, Jr and Melody Higgins were married at the Naval Academy Chapel on April 11, 2015 at 1200. Attending the bride were her daughter, Maureen Salazar (Matron-of-Honor), friends Patricia Young, Meredith Bowman (Bridesmaids) and Rebecca Salazar (Flower Girl). Attending the groom were Peter Varsanyi (Best Man), Brad Little, George Wilson and Rex Greathouse (Groomsmen). The couple will honeymoon in Lake Tahoe in May.
Kevin Stone writes:
Barbara and Kevin Stone were guests of Lynn and Randy Goff at the Annapolis Rotary’s Black Tie and Diamonds charity dinner/auction to benefit “Connected Warrior Foundation” at the Annapolis Westin. Randy is the President-Elect of the Rotary. Also in attendance was Jeff Neufeld who was working the silent auction for the Rotary. Here’s a picture of Kevin and Randy conducting a recon and sampling the wares of the Westin where we’re holding our 40th … which brings us the next item.
The 40th reunion is next year, Labor Day weekend. We’re at the Westin and have the N* Room at the stadium reserved for the tailgate. Mike Seifert is heading this up again after our leading our successful 35th so we’re in good hands. If you want to help Mike make this another great event please let Kevin know. We’ll put you to good use!
Geez, as I write this it is just turning warm and I haven’t had to cut the grass yet here I am announcing “Are you ready for some football???” We have 6 home games this year and will be carrying on with our famous tailgates. We’ll be in the same place but due to being in the American Athletic Conference the kickoff times vary. Watch for my emails announcing the tailgate, menu and asking for the headcount. I look forward to seeing you under the tent.
Jim Doherty was inducted March 22nd into the Athletic Hall of Fame at Haddon Township High School (Haddonfield, New Jersey). Barb and I attended the event and were witness to an inspiring speech given by Doc. He reminisced about his cross country (XC) running experiences in high school and at USNA, as well as a real life sea story about the night he was boat officer during a real live “man overboard” experience while assigned to the USS Mount Vernon (LSD-39) where he and his boat crew saved a sailor’s life in spite of the stormy sea conditions in the darkness of night.
Speaking of Bobbie Doherty, she was recently cast as “Tootie” in the musical Meet Me in St. Louis produced by the Ocean State Theatre, a professional theatre company in Warwick, Rhode Island. The following is an excerpt from a review that appeared in Broadwayworld.com:
“No mention of Meet Me in St. Louis’ cast could possibly be complete without a nod to rising star Bobbie Celine Doherty, who plays Tootie, the youngest Smith daughter. Tootie is the first character on stage in St. Louis, and from her opening line, Doherty simply steals the show. This pint-sized actress more than holds her own in a cast full of professional musical theater performers. She is a strong singer and dancer, and her comedic skills – for all her sugar and spice, there’s more than a little imp in the precocious Tootie – are second to none.”
Tim Farrell met up with two of his Bancroft Hall roommates for dinner recently. Dave Sneeringer was his first roommate and Scott Jenkins was his last. Tim also sent a picture that was suppose to accompany a previous Class column update of his USMA boss, Mo Gillen USMA ‘86 wearing a Navy jersey after she lost a bet on Army-Navy last fall to Tim.
I received a late addition to this column from Greg Vaughn:
Had meant to send you a note a while ago, but life and the holidays (and then a new year) intervened. I guess it was Easter Services at the USNA Chapel and the Cherry Blossoms at the Tidal Basin that reminded me of dear friends.
Susan and I had the opportunity to visit Judy and Chris Earl in Scottsdale, Arizona for a fabulous time at Thanksgiving, 2014. Although I’m sure it’s getting hot down there about now, it was a wonderful 65-70 degrees and extremely low humidity when we visited in late November. Our first time to Scottsdale and the first guests that Chris and Judy have had in the new home that they’ve spent the last two plus years building. The consummate hosts, Chris and Judy treated Susan and me to a wonderful time during our five-day visit.
Chris and I are classmates, 36th company mates, and fellow 30-year submariners. We seemed to end up in many of the same duty stations starting with our department head tours. This included Mare Island, CA, Pearl Harbor, HI and most recently the Northern Virginia/Washington DC area. We came to the DC area in 1998 and Chris and Judy followed in 1999. We’d been living about 6 miles apart the entire time (we’re still in Alexandria, VA) until Chris and Judy pulled chocks at the end of July last year and moved into their dream home in Scottsdale. I can’t emphasize what a big move this was for them. Chris and Judy had both been working here for the entire 15 years and they had only made frequent, short visits to Arizona as they cemented their plans to make the big move.
Since we had spent most of the last 15 years together at Thanksgiving, it was not a huge surprise when they asked us if we’d like to come visit them in Arizona for Thanksgiving, 2014 – and of course we said yes and promptly bought our tickets. (In hindsight, Chris thought that was a brave gesture – not knowing what was left to finish on their home. Chris emailed about three weeks before Thanksgiving and asked if we were ‘still coming’. I’m not sure what answer he really wanted to hear, but were already committed!)
As I mentioned, we had a great visit! After a quick detour to Sedona, Susan and I joined Chris and Judy the Wednesday before Thanksgiving. Chris (the consummate chef) succeeded in making the best Thanksgiving turkey dinner that I think he and Judy had ever served, we did power walks and saw indigenous wildlife galore, we hiked the famous Pinnacle Peak Trail (and realized that even though it’s only 3.5 miles round trip we weren’t 25 anymore), we got a tour of Old Town Scottsdale and we also visited the Phoenix auto show. Sunsets were spectacular and the nighttime sky was so clear and unpolluted that you had difficulty making out familiar stars because there were so many other stars in among them.
Anyway, Chris and Judy will tell you that the work on the house is not yet done, they are still working some exterior details and finishing touches – so I have no photos of the dream house, but I have a couple others of us during our Pinnacle Peak trail hike and some of the flora and fauna out there. There is a photo included of them and their cats, Mason and Garfield, relaxing in the den and a photo of their beautiful Thanksgiving spread.
We miss Chris and Judy here in Northern Virginia and are jealous of their new home and wonderful surroundings. We see Chris occasionally in the DC area when he comes back for some consulting work and we hope to see them both at the 40yr reunion in 2016 – if they haven’t grown very deep roots by then.
It seems that many of our 36th Company Mates have moved from the DC area in search of greener pastures or already live somewhere in their own paradise. In addition to Chris and Judy Earl’s departure, Mike Donnelly and his wife Candy moved not too long ago to St Augustine; Gary Greenfield now spends most of his time in Boston, and Janet and Brad Speer and Chris and Randy Large constantly taunt us with tales of their idyllic life in San Diego (my favorite duty station!). We wish them all the very best and hope to see them and the majority of our friends and classmates at the 40th reunion.
In the meantime we’ll continue to hold down the fort in the DC area with 36ers Val and George Puddington, Cathy and Brad Little, Gerri and Frank Wysocki and the rest of our many other local classmates, and watch Navy continue its football success this fall.
Just a quick note: my wife, Barb, and I spent a recent week at Grand Bahamas and Barb completed her PADI open water scuba certification with legendary diver, Nick Rolle from Sunn Odyssey Divers (Freeport, Grand Bahamas) as her instructor. My daughter, Meghan, and her husband, Jared Marinos USMA ‘05, joined us for the week. You can see the YouTube video of the gin clear waters and sea life at https://youtu.be/39y8IuLoZI0. We also snorkeled with Meghan & Jared and ran into a couple of spotted eagle rays off of Taino Beach (see https://youtu.be/XgnPlGe7STk).
A Classmate me asked to mention that a recent Shipmate contains the obituary of CDR Stanley Jerome Carter ’65 who passed away on November 8, 2014. CDR Carter was the 10th Company Officer from the beginning of our Plebe Year through the end of our Second Class Year and was well known around Bancroft Hall. We offer our deepest sympathies to the Carter family. May he rest in peace.
Shipmate: Stewardship 2015 8 March 2015Posted by USNA Class of 1976 in Shipmate.
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by Mark Hubbard
Time to ante up! Being that this is the Stewardship edition of Shipmate, it’s time to get your checkbooks out and support the Naval Academy in anyway you can! The Naval Academy truly relies on the philanthropic support from the alumni to keep the USNA a top notch academic and leadership institution.
I have been following our Classmate, the Reverend Steve Clark, on Facebook for quite some time and have been aware of his trials and tribulations these past couple of years regarding his health. Peter Varsanyi provided a succinct update on his status:
An update on Rev Steve Clark, former USMC CH-46 driver and fellow 31st Company mate who received a successful heart transplant at Newark Beth Israel Hospital, NJ, on 10 July 2014. Steve had been suffering with cardiac problems – what’s called a cardiomyopathy, which made him prone to heart failure, abnormal rhythms of the heart, and multiple open-heart surgeries over many years that gave requirement for a pacemaker/defibrillator. In 2012 he underwent significant cardiac surgery twice in NYC and spent many months in rehab before returning to his parish, Church of St. Francis of Assisi Mount Kisco, NY, in late 2012. Basically after two cardiac arrests, and two near cardiac arrests, multiple episodes of ventricular tachycardia from January to July 2014 and several abnormal rhythms of the heart he underwent ventricular ablation without success. He was finally evaluated as a candidate for a heart transplant. According to Steve, he hasn’t felt this good in many years and looking very much to going back to work at his parish. His recent follow-up visit with the director of the Rusk Institute for Rehab Medicine this past month showed extreme progress, and received written clearance from the transplant doctors at Newark Beth Israel to go back to work. Upon finishing he last cardiac rehab sessions and prior to going to work, he will undergo several interviews and exams to make sure he is mentally and emotionally ready. He is ready for boots back on the ground and not on Prozac yet! Steve gives heartfelt thanks for all the emails, prayers and encouraging words from his well-wishers. He wants to give a shout-out to all 31st Company mates, the Class, and especially his roommate, George Hicks, who visited him a few times for bed-checks.
Steve is on Facebook (Find: Steven Clark USNA) and looks forward to anyone who friends him. From the beginning it’s obvious to Fr. Steve that his health and well-being have been in God’s hands. He will continue to try to follow His lead, with some interesting challenges now and then. In any case, he feels “it’s still good to be on the snowy side of the grass”! Fr. Steve says “God Bless you all and thank you for your prayers and concern”.
Kevin McNamara has exciting news:
It has been awhile since I contributed to our Class News in Shipmate. The McNamara’s are all alive and well in Virginia Beach and I am working for Lockheed Martin supporting JS J7 in Suffolk. Still playing bad golf with Tom Kennedy, Dick Feckler and Bob Jackson on the weekends but it’s been a while. Waiting for Old Man Winter to get gone. I bumped into Mark Rupprecht at a Hampton Roads area Service Academy Seminar for high school students interested in attending one of the academies or ROTC. The McNamara’s had several major family events these last few months that I would like to share. My youngest daughter Maureen married her fiancé Nate in July in Virginia Beach. It was a wonderful event with family, friends and our Classmate Victor Thombs. The picture shows the entire McNamara clan. The two daughters in peach dresses are in various stages of their pregnancies. Fast forward 3-½ months later and the next picture shows me with my newest granddaughters Nora born to my oldest daughter Jennifer and her husband Greg (F-16 pilot) and Charlee born to my daughter Laurin and her husband Bubba.
Kathy Byus sent a nugget of news:
These 4 guys were all in 35th company. John Willis, Fred Byus, Walt Neboshynsky and Russ Pope. John and family came into town for the Army-Navy Game, and we all were able to get together for Sunday brunch. John and Walt had not seen each other since graduation! Names for the wives are: Monica Willis, Kathy Byus, Jane Neboshynsky, and Janice Pope.
I saved the last word for Kevin Stone:
Classmates – The annual “Halfway Dinner” to mark the mid point of our “deployment” between tailgate seasons is going to be on Saturday April 25th. As per tradition it will be at Joe Theismann’s in Alexandria. Cocktails are at 6:30, dinner at 7:30. Cost is $35 per person for dinner, pay your own bar tab. Please send your RSVPs to Mike and Vanessa Seifert at firstname.lastname@example.org NLT April 17th.
Okay, I lied – I have the last word so, as I think of my son-in-law, Jared Marinos USMA ’05, I just wanted to exclaim: BEAT ARMY!!!
Oh, and while I’m thinking about it, my old roommate, Jim Doherty, is being inducted March 22nd into the Haddon Township (New Jersey) High School Hall of Fame: “A stand-out performer on the legendary Haddon Township track and cross country teams of the late 1960s and early 1970s, Jim Doherty is honored this year as the Hall of Fame’s 1970s inductee. Jim is recognized as one of the great founders of the Haddon Township cross country tradition, a leader by pure example, who was, as Coach Al Tanner said of him, pound for pound one of the most indomitable runners he ever coached.” Congratulations, Doc!!! Barb and I will be there for the ceremony.
Shipmate: March/April 2015 27 January 2015Posted by USNA Class of 1976 in Shipmate.
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by Mark Hubbard
I am writing this from Maryland in between business trips. I’ve spent every week in January traveling for NASA racking up the air miles. Starting the first week in January I started my travels in Albuquerque, New Mexico, then to Berkley, California, then San Antonio, Texas and finally, next week at Vandenberg AFB in California for the launch of SMAP (Soil Moisture Active Passive). I was a member of the Goddard Team that built the Radiometer for SMAP. Scheduled to launch on Thursday, 29 JAN, the goal of the SMAP mission is to establish a satellite observatory in a near-polar, sun-synchronous Earth orbit in order to produce global maps of soil moisture, which will help improve our understanding of Earth’s water and carbon cycles and our ability to manage water resources. Okay, enough of today’s science lesson – let’s get on to the news.
While returning from our trip to California in December, Barb & I had the honor to fly home to Baltimore with the last surviving member of the Tuskegee Airmen, Lt. Col. Bob Friend. He was very gracious and eager to have his picture taken with me.
My wife, Barb, and I made a personal trip in December to be present in San Diego for the exciting Poinsettia Bowl, which Navy held on to win 17-16 over San Diego State University. There were several Classmates present at the game and the tailgater including: Tim Traaen; Emory Chenoweth and his sons, Matt and Kevin; Sharon & Phil Poirer; Jan & Pat Nevitt; Bev & Stu Hinrichs and their daughter, Jamie; A.B. & Dennis Dilucente, Mark Schweer and his friend, Ken; Dan O’Brien; Cindy & Mark Costello and Mark’s Mom. Tommy Gardner was late to the game and missed the tailgater. Randy Large helped to arrange the Tailgater as well, but was unable to attend the game because his Mom passed away that week. (Randy – you have our deepest sympathies; we are so sorry for your loss.). Many thanks go out to A.B. & Dennis Dilucente, Tim Traaen and Randy Large for coordinating and setting up the tremendous tailgater! Also, thank you Kevin Stone for helping coordinate the tailgate from a far as well as re-acquainting our Class with the USS Higgins (DDG-76). As Dennis Dilucente so poignantly stated, “We took a step, albeit a small step, towards once again sponsoring Leadership Awards for DDG-76 and welcomed the opportunity to party with the wardrooms JOs.” The Class donated roughly 100 tickets to the USS Higgins so a large contingent of crew members could attend the game. BRAVO ZULU!
The day following the game, Barb & I drove to Hermosa Beach, CA, to spend Christmas with Barb’s daughter, Jane Marie. While there I had an opportunity to stop by for a short visit with MaryLou & Phil Kumpis. They look great and are doing well.
There was a great turnout at the Army-Navy tailgater in Baltimore prior to the 13th victory in a row over Army. Many of the Class rendezvoused at the Raven’s Roost parking lot a couple of blocks from the stadium. There was more delicious food and drink than could possibly be consumed, but we all fun trying! Nothing like getting primed for battle against our arch rivals.
Tim Farrell won a bet because of the outcome of the game:
I work for Mo Gillen USMA ’86, at the Veterans Multi-Service Center in Coatesville, PA. Our bet on the Army-Navy game was the loser would wear the winner’s spirit gear at work all day Monday following the game, winner to provide clean spirit gear. I brought something for Mo to wear but when I arrived at work I saw she was already wearing a Navy shirt she’d gotten when she served with John Holden ’79.
Bill Kneller has some distressing news about Steve Topscher:
We have Steve Topscher, a 14th Co. classmate who is at the Perryville, MD, VA Medical Center with advanced stages of ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease). We had a 14th Co. get together for the GA Southern game and split up groups so half of us could visit on Saturday and the rest on Sunday.
On a final note, I received the sad news that Steve Rohrssen (30th Company) passed away unexpectedly on December 22nd. A close friend and co worker of Steve’s, Jim Noonan ’74 provided a fitting tribute to Steve stating that, “He was a good man, a dedicated family man, a spirited supporter of the Navy and Naval Academy, a highly skilled manager and leader at IBM, and a great friend to many. He will be deeply missed.” Our heartfelt thoughts and prayers go out to Steve’s wife, Jo Ann, and his children, Michael and Erika, as well as the rest of Steve’s extended family.