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  Issue/Date 20130113

AMERICAN SUBMARINERS

U. S. SUBMARINE VETERANS BREMERTON BASE

P O. Box 465, Silverdale, WA 98383-0465

 MEMBERSHIP:  284^

 

 

 If date/time seems old, right click here to refresh

Updated:

Thursday, January 16, 2014 07:37

 

Gertrude Check: Before political correctness, a  universal navy term for requesting an underwater telephone check with another boat or skimmer .

Our purpose is: "Perpetuate the memory of our shipmates who gave their lives in the pursuit of their duties while serving their country...................

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Base Monthly Meeting this Saturday, Jan 18th, 10AM

(Posted 11- 10-2013)

 

The January Base Meeting (FRA29), this Saturday morning (10AM), January 18th will feature speaker, Capt George Norman, skipper of the USS Ohio  (SSGN 726) Blue. Capt Norman, a Groton Base member, joined  USSVI in 2002.

 

Come early, eat breakfast, maybe. FRA opens 9AM.

 


 

Bremerton Base Captures Traveling Dolphins

(Posted 01-12-2014)

Photos taken by WRD John Mansfield. 

 

Base Cdr Jim DeMott led 5 other base members to Olympic Peninsula Base meeting Thursday evening, January 9th at the Community Center at Chimicum.  Oly Base provided guests with libations. 

 

WRD John Mansfield was also in attendance and informed all of national items and fielded questions, along with taking photos.  All enjoyed the camaraderie.

 


 

Navy vet compiles snippets of Navy’s first nuclear sub

Local submarine veteran displays the book he compiled told by former crew members including himself on USS Nautilus, the U.S. Navy’s first nuclear submarine.

Richard Bartlett  Northwest Navy Life
(Posted January 8, 2014 at 4:09 p.m.)

 

Tommy Robinson knew at a young age he would one day become a sailor in the U.S. Navy.

The idea began when he was a boy during World War II in Linden, a central California farming community near Stockton. There, he became enthralled by images of sailors wearing their white hats and bell bottoms. He says, “I knew right then I wanted to join.”

So, just after graduating high school in 1958, he granted his own wish just before his 18th birthday and enlisted in the Navy. Following recruit training he attended radioman school in San Diego, hoping for an assignment on board a submarine upon completion.

That wouldn’t happen, at least not then. He was told he was too tall to meet the then height restrictions for submariners. So his first duty station was at the Naval Communication Station at Skaggs Island near Sonoma, Calif. There he remained for 13 months, practicing the job he had been trained for, which focused largely on Morse code communications.

Before his next assignment, Robinson was again denied submarine duty and sent instead to the heavy cruiser USS Saint Paul (CA 73) with the 7th Fleet in Yokosuka, Japan. When his tour aboard Saint Paul was complete, so was his enlistment.

Robinson elected to leave the military and returned to his home town to attend community college and find a job. But the decision was short lived, lasting only 90 days.

“I realized rather quickly that I wasn’t having nearly as much fun as when I was in the Navy or making as much money,” he said. “So, I rejoined the Navy in 1961.”

This time he was promised submarine school, and finally in 1963 he was accepted to the school in New London, Conn. Upon graduation he was assigned to USS Nautilus (SSN 571). Nautilus, commissioned in 1954, became the world’s first nuclear-powered submarine, and in 1958 was the first submarine to transit under ice to the North Pole. The boat would go on to serve its entire active service during the Cold War years, regularly participating in war games with the then Soviet Union. Nautilus was decommissioned in 1980.

Robinson served as a radioman on board Nautilus from 1963-67. Shortly after reporting on board Nautilus was sent to the yards for repairs. Stemming from the ill fated sinking of the submarine USS Thresher (SSN 593) during deep-diving tests in the North Atlantic Ocean in 1963, the Navy implemented a rigorous submarine safety program in efforts to make subs much safer and easier to operate. Nautilus would remain in the yards nearly two years until all of the newly designed changes were made before it would again perform diving operations at sea.

Robinson went on to serve on two other submarines, USS Sterlet (SS 392) in 1967 performing surveillance operations off the coast of Vietnam, and years later on USS Abraham Lincoln (SSBN 602). While serving on Lincoln in 1979 as a senior chief with 20 years in service, Robinson took the exam for master chief and also applied for warrant officer. He was successful at both, but ultimately decided on taking the warrant officer route.

In 1982, Robinson reported to Trident Training Facility at the then Submarine Base Bangor in Silverdale, working as an instructor. It was at that time Bangor’s first homeported submarine, USS Ohio, was reporting for duty.

In 1988, Chief Warrant Officer Robinson retired from the Navy after 30 years of service. Following retirement, Robinson joined Nautilus Alumni Association, Inc. where he served as secretary of the organization before becoming president in 2012.

During that time he became well acquainted with many of the former crew members of Nautilus who religiously share stories from their experiences aboard the sub at annual Nautilus reunions, normally held in Groton, Conn., where Nautilus is open to the public as a historical ship at the Submarine Force Museum.

Two years ago, the group began kicking around the idea of collecting many of the stories into a book and Robinson agreed to take on the project and began canvassing former crew members to submit their Nautilus stories.

After much editing and finding a publisher, Friesen Press out of Victoria, British Columbia, the submissions found their way to print in a book titled, “Steely Eyed Killers of the Deep”, a collection of “sea stories, memories and musings” from more than 45 submariners, including Robinson, who served on board Nautilus from 1954 to its decommissioning in 1980.

In the book, Robinson recalls an incident that occurred on Nautilus in 1966 while he was serving as a radioman on board. Nautilus was performing an anti-submarine exercise with the aircraft carrier USS Essex off the coast of North Carolina.

Essex was being refueled. Nautilus, submerged nearby at a depth of about 200 feet, was ordered to move up to periscope depth. As the boat ascended, Essex began pulling away from the refueling site.

Robinson says he could tell Essex was close because of the ever increasing noise of the beating of the carrier’s screws as Nautilus ascended to periscope depth. The Nautilus diving officer immediately ordered Nautilus to reverse to full dive mode, but it was too late.

The bow of the Essex crashed into the forward starboard side of the Nautilus sail filling the boat with “a deafening shriek of grinding metal.”

“It just laid us right on our side,” recalled Robinson. “The entire upward forward side of the sail was sliced off, and periscopes were bent.”

Fortunately, no one was seriously injured. Nautilus made the 500-mile trip back to its New London, Conn homeport on its own accord as Essex headed to Boston to repair a 30 by 60-foot hole in its bow below the waterline.

This story is just one of the many entries portraying nearly every aspect of life aboard a submarine. Robinson is pleased with the end product. “This is my contribution to the history of Nautilus,” he said.

The cover art of the book was done by former Nautilus shipmate and Bremerton resident, the late Frank Bonaquisti. All proceeds from the sale of the book will be donated to the Dolphin Scholarship Foundation, which are awarded to the children of former submariners. Copies of the book are available online and in some local book stores.

“It’s been a fun project. It could be an eye opener to sailors today because a lot of the stuff we did they just don’t do anymore. It’s altogether different nowadays.”
 


 

Bremerton Base's New Storage Locker

(Posted 01-06-2014)  Photo by Dutch Kaiser

 

On Saturday morning, Jan 4th, VC Steve Corcoran led shelf builder Dutch Kaiser, COB Wayne Peterson and a couple other members in setting up new shelving and storing miscellaneous base paraphernalia in our new storage locker.

 

The storage locker is located at: 
Bremerton Self Storage | Reliable Storage, Bremerton, Washington 983111,  9324 Old Military Road NE, Bremerton, WA 98311

 

COB Peterson is the prime access person for this unit.  Steve and  Cdr Jim DeMott also have access.

 

If you have Base items (records, hardware, equipment etc) that need to be stored, please call COB Wayne Peterson at 360-265-0266.

 

 

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Monthly Meetings

Winter Hours

Starting in October
3rd Sat, 1000

 at FRA 29

521 National Ave,

Bremerton, WA

 

2014 Calendar below, Email  Red to change
 Click Date to Show Event

 


 

2014 Golden Anniversary USSVI Convention in San Francisco
(Posted 01-09-2014)


The 2014 Golden Anniversary USSVI Convention will be in San Francisco, Sept 1st to 7th, 2014.

The convention will be held the San Francisco Airport Hyatt Regency at 1333 Bayshore Hwy. Burlingame, CA 94010.


ClickClick on the convention logo and you will find all the information linked that you will need including the POD and registration form.
 


 

Order Base Logo T-Shirts

(Posted 01-05-2014)

 

     

 

Base Storekeeper Ralph Harris is going to order long and short sleeve T-shirts (M-2X) that will have a large print of the Bremerton Base logo on the front of the T-shirts.

 

Please contact Ralph (360-876-0830) if you are interested.  You are not obligated but he needs to know approximately the number and what sizes to order.  Cost to you will be no more than $12 a piece.

 


 

Base Has Historian

(Posted 01-06-2014)

 

Bremerton Base has an official historian. His name is Bob Paul. Bob is a USSVI Life member and has been active in helping SK Ralph Hariis in setting up a web page(s) that should be on-line soon. Bob served in the submarine service from 1964 to 1987.

 

If you are hording any base historical stuff, consider tuning it over to Bob (360-692-0165)

 


 

November - December Puget Soundings On-line

(Posted 12-29-2013)

 

The E-Board voted to send each Bremerton Base member (address on file with USSVI) a hard copy to ensure that all members have access to the Puget Soundings.  Meanwhile you advanced internet operators can take a look at the same thing which includes some well written comments by base leadership.  Look Here!

 

 

May 2014

Deterrent Park Brick Install Sponsors

Waller

Gibson

 


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