Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Alan's Navy Service
Reunion History

During my 21 year Career as a Sailor in the U. S. Navy I served in four ships.  I started as a Seaman Apprentice and retired as a Yeoman Chief.  Here is my history in these ships and the reunions of the crew that I have attended. 

 USS Ranger (CVA-61) homeported in Alameda, California.  I served in Ranger from 18 April 1962 to 18 July 1964.  I was a Seaman Apprentice, Seaman and a Yeoman Third Class.
I have attended the following reunions of the USS Ranger Crew:

  • 2001 Norfolk, VA  12 Apr - 15 Apr
  • 2004 Branson, MO  3 Jun - 5 Jun
  • 2009 Mobile, AL 19 Jun - 20 Jun
  • 2014 Jacksonville, FL  2 Oct - 5 Oct

 USS Sellers (DDG-32) homeported in Charleston, South Carolina.  I served in Sellers from 22 November 1969 to 28 October 1971.  I was a Yeoman First Class.  I have attended the following reunions of the USS Sellers Crew:

  • 2002 Charleston, SC  17 Oct - 20 Oct
  • 2004 Jacksonville, FL  7 Oct - 10 Oct
  • 2014 San Antonio, TX  16 Oct - 19 Oct

 USS John Paul Jones (DDG-32) homeported in Long Beach, California and San Diego, California.  I served in John Paul Jones
from 15 December 1975 to 22 July 1977.  I was a Yeoman Chief.  I have attended the following reunions of the USS John Paul Jones Crew:

  • 2002 Norfolk, VA  10 Oct - 14 Oct
  • 2004 Philadelphia, PA  29 Apr - 3 May
  • 2009 Nashville, TN  17 Apr - 20 Apr
  • 2014 Pensacola, FL  29 Apr - 2 May

USS Hull (DD-945) homeported in San Diego, California.  I served in Hull from 9 December 1977 to 1 December 1978.  I was a Yeoman Chief.  I have attended the following reunions of the USS Hull Crew:

  • 2004 Las Vegas, NV 14 Sep - 16 Sep
  • 2014 San Diego, CA  21 Oct - 23 Oct
During My Career I served on three Ships that had major overhauls.
  •   USS Ranger (CVA-61) at Hunter's Point Navy Shipyard
  •   USS Sellers (DDG-11) at Charleston Navy Shipyard
  •   USS John Paul Jones (DDG-32) at Long Beach Navy Shipyard
During My Navy Career I made the following Cruises:
  • USS Ranger (CVA-61) Western Pacific 1962-1963
  • USS Sellers (DDG-11)  Mediterranean Sea 1971
  • USS Hull (DD-945) Western Pacific 1978
I post this today to summarize my U. S. Navy Ship Duty, my Shipyard experiences and my Deployment Record.  I also desired to list all the Crew Reunions that I have attended.

Monday, October 27, 2014

San Diego, California
Visiting Our Past
During our recent visit to San Diego for a USS Hull (DD-945) Reunion My Bride and I visited the neighborhood were we lived in 1977 and 1978 when I served in the USS Hull.
This is the School where our oldest child attended
Kindergarten.  It was a year around school.

It was a mere two blocks from our home at
4070 Debbyann Place, Chula Vista, California

This is the intersection where I, Alan had
my famous motorcycle accident in May of 1977.
I was in the Balboa Navy Hospital in traction
for 30 days.  Because of this accident
I was on limited duty for about six months and
I lost my assignment in the John Paul
Jones (DDG-32)

This is the location where I had my accident.
As you can see, the curb has been set up for
handicapped mobility.  It was higher when
I jumped it in 1977.

This is the view looking South on Twining Avenue
from Debbyann Place.  You can see Mexico in the
distance.  We were about two miles North
of the Border.

Our oldest participated in fun activities and
recreation at this facility when he was
between sessions at his year around

A view of the playing field used during the intersessions.

This playground/park is less than five blocks
from where we lived.

Behind the 2014 Black Dodge Charger you can
see the home we lived in while we were in
San Diego.  It has changed a lot.  There
were no palm trees there then.

A close up view of 4070 Debbyann Place.
A gallon of gas a year was all that was needed
to keep the lawns mowed.
It was interesting to again visit the neighborhood were we lived 37 years ago.  The house at 4070 Debbyann Place was constructed in 1968 and sold to the first owner for $18,000.00.  We purchased it in late 1976 for $40,000.00 and sold it two years later in 1978 for $66,000.00. 

The Sea Duty in California in the late 1970s was very good for us!!! 

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Janice Marie and Alan
2014 Ship Reunions
San Antonio, Texas
San Diego, California

Yes, We did it in fine Sailor Style.  My Bride and I attended the reunions of the USS Sellers (DDG-11) and the USS Hull (DD-945 during the period of October 16 through October 24.  We flew by Delta Air because driving would have been impossible when the reunion time frame is considered.  Besides that, driving these distances would have been very tiring.  We enjoyed the reunions.

This Blog Post features us.  Over the next several days there will be Post which will cover the events and the sights we enjoyed!!

Our first full day at the Sellers Reunion featured a Field Trip to the National Museum of the Pacific War in Fredericksburg, Texas.  Here you see myself and a shipmate at a Gun Mount.  We were both YN1 when we served, however my Shipmate was a Plank Owner.  I severed in the Sellers at a YN1 but during the
1969-1971 time frame.

Here I am besides a Tank in the Museum.

Of course I had to have my picture taken alongside the Admiral Chester Nimitz Barge.

Sailor Alan with a Screw in the Memorial Garden outside of the Museum.

My Bride posed for this picture after we enjoyed a fine German meal at this restaurant.

A couple pose.

The next day of the Sellers Reunion we visited the famous San Antonio River Walk.  This pose was in the garden beside the Alamo,

Janice Marie at the River Walk.

Retired Sailor Alan at the River Walk!

Janice Marie at the River Walk!

Got Guiness?

We enjoyed the wonderful lunch at the Mad Dog alongside the River Walk.  Here Janice Marie poses with a member of the Staff at this fine drinking and dining establishment.  The 84 on his shirt indicates the year the Pub was established.

Retired Sailor got to pose with the Mad Dog!!!

Janice Marie at one of the River Walk Exits.

Retired Sailor Alan at a River Walk Exit.

This is the last picture that features us while attending the USS Sellers Reunion
in San Antonio.  We flew to San Diego on the morning of October 20, 2014 to be ready for the USS Hull Reunion.

We are both now in San Diego for the USS Hull Reunion.  For some reason the pictures for this event did not load in order taken sequence.  Here you see Sailor Alan at Point Loma!!

Retired Sailor Alan at Point Loma again.

Janice Marie and Alan with San Diego in the background.

More of San Diego in the background.

You must visit a Jack in the Box when you visit California!!!  When I returned home from the 1978 Hull deployment our youngest Son also met me at the pier.  As we were driving home he could tell me the names of the fast food establishments.  I developed the idea that must have been where My Bride fed our kids while I was gone.  Our youngest was only two years old, but he learned the names by watching the commercials on television.  My Bride to this day states that they never ate at a Jack in the Box.  So we had to stop at this one to simply recall our days in San Diego.

Prior to our visit to Point Loma we had to visit the
USS Recruit (affectionally known as USS Neversail), where Boots at Recruit Training Center San Diego learned basic Seamanship skills.  I can recall the day when our company, number 425 went aboard.  We were taught boarding procedures.

Recalling the Bridge over which Companies walked when transferring from Primary Boot Training to Advanced Boot Training.  It was a special moment when we did this walk.  It meant we had accomplished the first weeks of Boot and could look for Graduation in several more weeks.  

Although Janice Marie did not participate in Boot Camp with me in 1961 she had to have her picture taken here.

Here you can see the USS Recruit in the middle left of this picture.  Note the luxury hotel on the right end of the picture.  The rest of the former Navy Training Center, San Diego has been developed with fine condos and almost Zero Lot Line Housing.  

I had to pose for this picture.  Of course I did not have a car while at Boot Camp, but I suspect that this is from the later days when the Boot Company Commanders who trained Boots at the USS Recruit parked their transportation

Prior to leaving the USS Recruit I had to conduct a material inspection of the Hull of this ship, which is being rehabilitated.  I understand that She is now on the National Register of Historic Places.

Here were are as a Couple at the Point Loma Light House.

Of course Sailor Alan had to kiss the Whale.

Here I hug the Whale.

My Bride had to get in on the action!!

San Diego Harbor and North Island in the Background.

Retired Sailor Alan with North Island in the Background.

Of course we visited the USS Midway, which is now a Museum Ship (Carrier), while in San Diego.

I must have acted up while we visited the USS Midway.  Here I am in the Brig.

During our four day visit in San Diego for the USS Hull Reunion we rented this fine automobile.  

As I indicated earlier, these pictures from the Hull Reunion did not load to this Blog in proper sequence.

Sailor Alan at the National Monument Cabrillo!!

Janice Marie at the Tree which is near the Point Loma Light House!!

Here she is again with the Point Loma Light House in the background.

We spent a wonderful afternoon being a Tourist at Point Loma and also viewed the thousands of graves at the National Cemetery!!!
We both enjoyed our USS Sellers and USS Hull Reunions.  While Janice Marie was not with me during my tour in the USS Sellers (DDG-11) which was from 1969 through 1971 she was with me when I served in the USS Hull (DD-945) in 1977 and 1978.  While I served in the Sellers I made one Med Deployment (Cruise) and my final Western Pacific Cruise was made as I served in the USS Hull.

I continue to enjoy attending My Ship Reunions and I also look forward to attending many more.  However you must also be aware that I served on four great U. S. Navy War Ships so it is not always financially possible to attend them all.  

If anyone had told me when I joined our U. S. Navy in 1961 that I would serve 21 years I would have laughed at them.  As it was, I served on four ships and also enjoyed four Shore Duty Tours.  However, I am not aware of Shore Duty Stations conducting Reunions.  

Therefore my Ship Reunions are always very special to me.

In concluding this Post, Please remember our Navy's Heroes who have served and who are now serving.  Most of them, like myself also have families.  I would suggest that you, like I, keep these Heroes and Their Families in your Concerns and Prayers each Day!!!!

I have great fondness for my Sea Duty Stations and I am a Proud U. S. Navy Veteran.