Friday, December 26, 2014

2014 Holiday Luncheon Photos

On Saturday, December 20th submarine veterans, family, and guests gathered at the Meydenbauer Bay Yacht Club in Bellevue for the USSVI annual holiday luncheon. The weather was cloudy and rainy, but the club was warm and inviting.

The day started with some social time that gave us all a chance to catch up on the exploits of our shipmates over the last year and to look at some of the submarine memorabilia on display. Then it was on to lunch, the annual toasts, and presentations. Pat Householder gave a short remembrance of the shipmates that departed on Eternal Patrol in 2014 and then Base Commander Dick Gonzalez presented the Shipmate of the Year Awards to Doug Abramson and John Roberts. Congratulations to Doug and John on their well-deserved awards and thanks for all the hard work they’ve done for Seattle Base this past year. The floor was then opened for sea stories and holiday remembrances.

Thanks to everyone else who helped out with the luncheon.

It is always good to see all of our shipmates and enjoy the holiday season with them. I hope you enjoy the photos from the event.

The luncheon area during the social hour.
Looking at the memorabilia table
More memorabilia
Dick and Fran Gonzalez
Larry Abbott and Lois Mezek at the club entryway
Patti Lynn and Ric Hedman
Bill and Diane Giese
Bob Opple with daughter Kelly
Steve and Lynda Shelton
Leslie Stevenson and Pat Householder
Larry and Nan Abbott
Bob and Dainni Haslan
Schell and Av Harmon
Jay and Miri Davis
Marc and Karen Vellat
Andrea Giesler and Cliff Nutter
Don and Carol Ulmer
Bill and Judy Thompson
New members Dick Krause and Daryl Zentner
Bob and Peggy Vanderway
Jim and Barbara Davis
Eric and Sherry Muller
Don and Rachel Dufour
Keith and Judy Watson
Dave and Lynn Schueler
Karl and Linda Peterson
Jim and Marilyn Harper
(front to back) Terri Robertson, Amy Wade, Loma Taylor and Sue Greenfeld
Doug Gilman and Dave Schueler
Karl 'Dutch' and Barbara Krompholz
John and Sandra Roberts
Roy and Linda Burt (center) with daughters Kia, Noel, and Emma
Nonie Skagg and Angus McDonald
Ralph Sterley and Lois Twelves
Ric Hedman and Jon McKeon
Steve Shelton and Doug Abramson
Base Chaplin Andrea Giesler provides the invocation
Base Commander Dick Gonzalez gives his opening remarks
Pat Householder with a remembrance of departed shipmates
Shipmate of the Year Doug Abramson
Shipmate of the Year John Roberts
The room during the luncheon
The other half of the room

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Holiday Luncheon Reminder and Notes

The Seattle Base USSVI Holiday Luncheon at the Meydenbauer Bay Yacht Club is next Saturday, December 20.
The front of the Meydenbauer Bay Yacht Club
We just had a productive meeting with the club manager to finalize the details. Here are a few important items:
  • Limited parking is available in the upper parking lot providing easy access into the facility. Additional space in the lower lot is available with steps providing convenient access to the rear of the building. It is suggested those with disabilities or having difficulty with stairs arrive a few minutes early to utilize the upper lot. 
  • Social hour begins at 11am and lunch will be served at noon. 
  • There will be tables provided for submarine memorabilia, so feel free to bring along items to display. 
  • Name tags will be provided as you check in. 
  • All wine and beer are included with the cost of your meal. 
  • An open bar, with a certified bartender, will be provided (we are providing our own liquor for the bar). 

The menu for this year:
  • Fresh garden salad and rolls 
  • Your selected choice of: Beef tenderloin au jus with horseradish on the side or King salmon filets with tartar sauce 
  • Fresh asparagus 
  • Roasted potatoes 
  • New York cheesecake with champagne toast 
The Meydenbauer Bay Yacht Club is located at: 9927 Meydenbauer Way SE, Bellevue WA 98004 (mapquest link)
Click on the image below for information about getting to the yacht club and lower parking lot.

We look forward to a special celebration with you and your guests.

If you have any questions please call Dick Gonzalez at 425‐228-6327 or Jim Harper at 425-357-6485.

Dick Gonzalez
Seattle Base Commander

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Seattle Base visits Children's Hospital during Kap(SS) 4 Kid(SS) Week

Seattle Base Kap(SS) for Kid(SS) members at Children's Hospital
Veterans Week was busy for the Seattle Base. With our participation in the annual Auburn Veterans Parade on Saturday, a Kap(SS) 4 Kid(SS) visit to Children’s Hospital on Monday, and Honor Guard duties at Tahoma National Cemetery on Tuesday, we barely had time to catch our breath. As with last year, the visit to the kids was a highlight. On Monday, November 10th, Base Commander Dick Gonzalez, Senior Vice Commander and K4K Chairman John Roberts, and COB Ralph Sterley, a WWII SubVet, visited with some special friends at Seattle Children’s Hospital.

We were warmly invited to return this year by the Director of Child Life Services, Lina Lewis. Her staff escorted us to each child’s room where we were privileged to interact with them and their parents or other care givers.

In all, 12 children were recipients of Honorary Submariner Certificates, K4K caps in pink or blue, coloring books, submarine photos, “tattoos”, and sea stories of a gentler nature.

In addition, we entertained another 9 children in the Playroom where the patients can visit with their brothers, sisters and friends. Again, the Child Life Services staff was enthusiastic about our visit and very helpful in assisting us to interact with the younger children.

One young child, Madeline, was especially engaging. We helped her mother apply one of our “tattoos” on her arm which she proudly pointed out to all of her visitors and care providers for the rest of the day.

Over cups of coffee after the visit, we all agreed that once again we probably received a lot more joy than we gave. We’ve rotated 6 of our members through the program so far and there’s a long line of eager participants waiting for the next visit.

Commander's Corner for December 2014


As we celebrate this special time of year with families and friends it is well to remember our fellow shipmates who embarked on Eternal Patrol; to their families we pledge they will not be forgotten.

It is also a time to reflect and celebrate our heritage; the story of our brotherhood is one we must continue to perpetuate: In my opinion and most importantly, we need to share our legacy as US Submariners with those who count the most, our families. They are the ones that will insure your “Patriotic Service” is remembered.

As we slide into home plate we can look back at an eventful year of public appearances, fund raising activities, and charitable programs highlighted by a superbly managed Tolling of Boats in Kirkland.

To all that participated and those who took ownership for these events we say; “Thanks for a job well done!”

We are anticipating a great Christmas lunch at the Meydenbauer Yacht Club. Hopefully we will have a record turnout. It will be a perfect venue us to share sea stories. I know your wives and friends will appreciate the atmosphere and privacy it affords, we will have fun and to hopefully rekindle friendships.

If you have not yet signed up and sent your form to Jim Harper you have time. We encourage you to attend as this type of event is for you and no other. It is an opportunity to light a candle for this most special of all holidays.

Finally, on behalf of the Board members and myself we wish every one of the Seattle Base USSVI members a special Christmas Holiday and a happy New Year. Hope to see you at Meydenbauer and remember:


Dick Gonzalez
Seattle Base Commander

November 2014 Meeting Notes

We started off the November meeting with Tolling the Boats lost for November and December, followed by birthday wishes for our members, officer reports, and introductions.

Our Storekeeper let us know there are still a few 2015 USSVI calendars are available for $10 and he has Golden Anchor Award patches, which can be purchased from the Base Storekeeper for $4. Money from items purchased through the Base Storekeeper go to fund Seattle Base events throughout the year.

We also want to remind everyone that annual memberships run out at the end of the year and Seattle Base and USSVI National dues for next year are due at this time.

Old and New Business:
Seattle Base Holiday Luncheon – The Seattle Base Holiday Luncheon is set for Saturday December 20 at the Meydenbauer Bay Yacht Club. Registration has been extended to December 2, so get your registration in now! You can get download and print a registration form from this link or you can get a copy from the most recent version of our newsletter. The doors will open at 10 am and we will finish up at 2 pm. The Meydenbauer Bay Yacht Club is located at 9927 Meydenbauer Way SE, Bellevue WA and there will be ample parking in the lower parking lot near the club. There will be plenty of table space to display submarine memorabilia and everyone is encouraged to bring along some items to show off.

Kaps 4 Kids update – On November 10 John Roberts, Ralph Sterley, and Dick Gonzalez went to Children’s Hospital on a Kaps 4 Kids visit. They gave out hats and temporary tattoos to the children there. We will post a recap of the event shortly.

Seattle Base Visibility and Membership – In an effort to help increase the Base membership, we would like to get more information about USSVI and Seattle Base out into the public. We are currently looking into some volunteer opportunities with the Compass Housing Alliance. If you would like to help out with this or have other ideas of ways to increase membership and improve retention, please contact Base Commander Dick Gonzalez or bring them up at the next meeting.

November Program:
Angus McDonald talking about his time at the Pentagon
The November program was by Base member Captain Angus McDonald. Angus gave us a brief history of his career, but the program focused on stories from his time at the Pentagon in the late-60s. Angus talked about the different people he met or worked with, including Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara and acoustics expert Dr. Robert Frost. Angus was at the Pentagon when USS Scorpion was lost and he talked about how they used acoustics to determine where the sub had gone down. He told us that while he was at the Pentagon there were no guards during the day and that people could come in off the street and look through the artwork in the building. He also let us know that when the Pentagon was built, toward the end of World War 2, that no steel was used in the original construction. It has been added into the structure now, but the part of the building that was damaged during the Sept 11, 2001 attack had recently been refurbished, which was why they was so little damage and loss of life. Angus provided some interesting stories and details about life at the Pentagon and in Washington DC during the height of the Cold War.

Good of the Order:
Due to the holiday luncheon, we will not have a business meeting in December. We hope to see you at the luncheon and the January meeting.

Dick Gonzalez shared some Veterans Day cards made by school children. The kids wrote some funny comments and it was nice to see the effort they put into making the cards.

Remember that efforts to move the USS Clamagore to Knoxville Tennessee are moving forward and you can follow developments on Facebook at:

Binnacle List: Art Thompson had a bad fall and is recovering. We hope to see him back at the meetings soon.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Binnacle List: Ken Murray

Seattle Base member Ken Murray had surgery last week to remove a brain tumor.

The surgery went well and Ken is currently recovering.

Please keep Ken in your thoughts and prayers during his recovery, and cards would be appreciated.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

November 2014 Meeting Reminder


The next Seattle Base meeting is this coming Wednesday, November 19. We will meet at VFW Post #2995 (4330 148th Ave N.E., Redmond WA 98052). Social hour starts at 6 PM with business meeting at 7PM.

This is our last meeting of 2014. In December we will hold our holiday luncheon at the Meydenbaur Bay Yacht Club in Bellevue. You can find a copy of the registration form in the most recent issue of the Dolphin Brotherhood newsletter on page 11 or at this link. Don’t forget to get your registration form in before November 20.
Angus McDonald at the Tolling the Boats ceremony
Unfortunately, our scheduled speaker, Mrs. Rebecca Harrison, had to cancel her trip. However, Seattle Base member Captain Angus McDonald has agreed to step up and offer us a glimpse of his long and distinguished career as a US Submarine Commander followed by his service in the Pentagon and Pearl Harbor. We know you will want to hear Captain McDonald's account of US Submarine history during the years from 1951-1967 and beyond.

USSVI Seattle Base Commander
Dick Gonzales