Monday, November 21, 2016

November 2016 Meeting Notes

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

Old and New Business
Auburn Veterans Day Parade – We started off the business portion of the meeting with a recap of the Auburn Veterans Day Parade (you can see some photos here). As usual, it was a good time. We had four USSVI Bases represented, each with a float, the Silent Service Motorcycle Club (SSMC), and two of our World War II veterans were the parade Grand Marshals. We received a nice thank you from the Auburn Special Events Coordinator and we were awarded the Harold Page Memorial Award for the parade. Because the city only provided one plaque, we voted to purchase three extra plaques and send them out to the other bases. Thanks again to Ric Hedman for helping to organize the parade this year.
Harold Page Memorial Award plaque
Veterans Day Ceremony – Keith Watson also gave a recap of the Veterans Day Ceremony at Tahoma National Cemetery.

Holiday Luncheon – The Seattle Base USSVI Holiday Luncheon is set for Saturday, December 3 at the Meydenbauer Yacht Club in Bellevue WA. It is a great end of year event for all submarine veterans and associates. There is only about a week to reserve your place. The registration form for the event can be found at this link and in the latest issue of the newsletter.

2017 USSVI Calendars – The 2017 USSVI Calendars had not arrived in time for our November meeting. But they will be available at the Holiday Luncheon on December 3, so there is another reason to attend! Be sure to bring along some extra money to pick up your copy.
2017 USSVI calendar cover
Hail and Farewell – Outgoing Sr. Vice Commander John Roberts was on hand to say good-bye to the group before his move to Texas and we had a chance to thank him for all the good work he did while he was with us. We wish all the best to John and his family. This was also Carl Minor’s first meeting as our new Sr. Vice Commander. Carl will also be taking on responsibilities for the Seattle Base’s Kaps for Kids program and our annual Tolling the Boats ceremony.

November Program:
November’s program was an in-depth look at one of our submarine shipmates by Ric Hedman.
Ric Hedman giving his presentation
The story was about Alfred Gustave Prien, the who was watching the “Christmas Tree” control panel during the ill-fated dive of USS Squalus (SS-192) in 1939. Ric started out by talking about what was known of Prien’s early life and that he joined the U.S. Navy in 1932. He went on to talk about Prien’s life. There isn’t much on his early duty stations, but he was at the submarine base at Coco Solo Panama before being ordered to USS Squalus in 1939. After being rescued from the sunken submarine, Prien and other survivors were taken to the hospital, treated, and release as seen fit. After the long inquiry into the sinking, the men were reassigned with Prien going to the USS R-2, which was operating as a submarine school training ship out of Submarine Base, New London. In 1940, Prien got orders back to Portsmouth and to the crew of the new submarine Triton (SS 201). Triton was commissioned two months later. Sea trials and shake down cruises, training exercises and mine laying drills kept Triton in the Portsmouth area until July 1, 1941 where he met his future bride, Mary Marconi. Prien was still on Triton at the start of World War II and would go on to serve on USS Sunfish, USS Queenfish, and USS Trepang during the war. After World War II, Prien let the Navy and settled in Portsmouth, NH. He died in 1957 in a boating accident and is buried in Portsmouth.

Ric also shared a photo of the submarine that were operating in the naval exercise Fleet Problem 14 in 1933. Ric talked about the boats and what the exercise was all about.

The program was an enjoyable look at one of the men that was involved in a historic submarine service event.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

November 2016 Meeting Reminder

The next Seattle Base meeting is this coming Wednesday, November 16, 2016. We will meet at VFW Post #2995 (4330 148th Ave N.E., Redmond WA 98052). Social hour starts at 6 PM and the business meeting at 7 PM.

Remember, due to other meetings at the VFW post, our November meeting will be held in the small meeting room under the main VFW hall. Also, this will be our last business meeting of the year.

We will be recapping the Veterans Day activities, cover the plans for the upcoming Holiday Luncheon, and talk about 2017.
Meydenbauer Yacht Club
Speaking of the Seattle Base USSVI Holiday Luncheon, it is set for Saturday, December 3 at the Meydenbauer Yacht Club in Bellevue WA. It is a great end of year event for all submarine veterans and associates. The registration form for the event can be found at this link and in the latest issue of the newsletter. If you haven’t sent in your registration yet, but sure to print out a copy and bring it with you.

Finally, Bob Haslan and Pierre Bruneau are looking for someone to bring them to the Seattle Base meetings. They are coming from the Bothell area, but can get closer to I-405 if needed (around exit 22). If you are coming through that area on your way to the meetings and have some extra room, please let us know so we can arrange something.

We hope to see you at the meeting!

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Tahoma Veterans Day Ceremony Reminder and a Thank You

Seattle SubVets at a previous ceremony
Remember the Veterans Day Ceremony at Tahoma National Cemetery is this Friday, November 11, starting at 11:00am at Main Flag Pole.

The keynote speaker is Milton Till, a WWII Veteran and the guest speaker is Arlene Murray, from the Gold Star Wives.
Seattle Base is planning on carrying our flags. It will probably be wet so come prepared!

We received a thank you note from the City of Auburn for the submarine veteran participation at the Veterans Day Parade last Saturday. Please pass this along.

It was with great pleasure for the City of Auburn to pay special tribute to the United States Submarine Veterans, Inc. for our 2016 parade. You all looked GREAT at the front of the parade! And for those of you who weren’t at the lunch, Ralph represented well and kept the room laughing!

We also want to give a special thanks to the Yakima and the Rogue-Umpqua Bases – what a great addition you and your floats were! We’d love to have you join us again in future years.

The event was wet, but wonderful. The parade can be viewed online at: I know most of you don’t get the opportunity to see most of the parade, so thought you’d enjoy.

Thanks to everyone who participated and helped out with the USSVI’s involvement!

Much appreciated!
Kristy Pachciarz, CPRP
Special Events Coordinator | City of Auburn

Saturday, November 5, 2016

2016 Auburn Veterans Day Parade Photos

It was a cool, rainy Saturday for the 51st annual Auburn Veterans Day Parade. The rain continued most of the morning, but let up a little as the parade started. Even with the rain, we had a good turnout of submarine veterans with members from Seattle, Bremerton, Yakima, and Rogue River – Umpqua bases, the Silent Service Motorcycle Club, and a color guard from USS Michigan (SSGN-727).

World War II submarine veterans Ralph Sterley and Fred Ensselen were the Grand Marshalls for the parade. Western District 4 Commander Al Durkee was also part of the parade dignitaries.

Even with the rain, the crowd was enthusiastic and welcoming, and everyone seemed to have a good time. It was great to see all the veterans out for the parade.

Here are some photos from the event.
A group shot of (almost) all the submarine veterans at the parade, including a few active duty submariners
Bremerton Base float with four active-duty sailors for USS Michigan
Rogue - Umpqua Base float
Yakima Base float
A close up of the "crew" of the Yakima Base float
Al Durkee talking with SubVets and active-duty submariners, including the first two enlisted women assigned to USS Michigan
A little pre-parade chatter
The Silent Service Motorcycle club
A little more pre-parade chatter about ways to stay dry
Grand Marshal Ralph Sterley (L) talks with Bob Opple
A flyover by an Air Force C-17 kicked off the parade
Sailors from USS Michigan led the submarine contingent
A photo looking back at the submarine floats and SSMC
A photo looking forward as we reached the Auburn "Thank You" banner
A photo of the King County Sheriff helicopter doing a fly-by
We hope to see you at next year's parade!

Friday, November 4, 2016

2016 Auburn Veterans Day Parade Reminder

The Auburn Veterans Day Parade is set for November 5, 2016 and the Submarine Veterans will lead off this year’s parade. World War II submarine veterans Ralph Sterley and Fred Ensselen are the Grand Marshalls for the parade. Paul Christofferson had to bow out of this year’s event. We are planning on having four floats (Seattle, Bremerton, Yakima, and Rogue River – Umpqua), the Silent Service Motorcycle Club (SSMC) and a color guard from USS Michigan.

Because we are near the front of the parade, we need everyone to show up early. We would like everyone to be in place by 10 AM. We will be meeting at E and F Streets in Auburn. SSMC motorcycles can form up with Seattle and Bremerton Bases on E Street. Note that there will be free parking in the transit garage by the train depot at A Street and 2nd Street.

The parade will start at 11 AM with a flyover of an Air Force C-17 transport. 
Click on the map for a larger view

We hope to see you there!