ClickGertrude check


  Issue/Date 20140317


Thursday, March 20, 2014 08:41 AM

Puget Soundings - Base Newsletter

  May-July   Aug-Oct   Nov-Dec   Jan-Mar 



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





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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Bremerton Base WWII Subvet Paul Christofferson Headlined in NW Navy News

(Posted 3-19-2014)


Photo by NW Navy Life

Paul Christofferson, 89, of Tacoma served during three wars both as a U.S. sailor and soldier.

Three war vet now a rare breed
Richard Bartlett, NW Navy Life
Posted March 18, 2014 at 4:12 p.m.


Paul Algot Christofferson knows what it means to serve his country. He should, he did it for 23 years, volunteering his service through two wars and part of another.

Since then, the 89-year old has called the Pacific Northwest home for nearly 40 years, which included a 10-year stint as a civilian employee at the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard in Bremerton.

Paul was born Jan. 13, 1925 in Ogden, Iowa. Less than a year later his family moved to Omaha, Neb. after his father took an entry level job with the railroad.

It was in Omaha, at the age of 17 and just a year shy of the infamous attack on Pearl Harbor, that Paul and a couple of buddies decided they wanted to join the military and fight the Japanese.  Read All!


Life Member Goes on Eternal Patrol

(Posted 3-18-2014)


WWII Vet and Life Member Lester "Ray" Franks, 87, STCS(SS) USN (ret) went on eternal patrol within the last 48 hours. Ray, a Canadian at birth, served in surface craft as a Radarman in WWII and qualified as in Tilefish (SS-307) in 1949.  He  changed rating to Sonarman in the late 40's. Ray was then transferred back to surface craft and returned to submarine duty in Von Steuben (SSBN-632) in 1963 and retired in 1966.  Sailor, rest you oar!


Will follow up with obit when available./Red 



March USSVI Bremerton Base General Membership Meeting Summary

(Posted 3-16-2014)


The base March general membership meeting held at 10AM, on Saturday, March 15th at the FRA 29 Facility at 521 National Ave, Bremerton.


Traditional opening ceremonies were followed by Base Commander Jim DeMott recognizing WRD John Mansfield, WWII Subvet Paul Christofferson, MALs Will Harvey and Ron Lewis, and potential new members.


Commander Jim also recognized four members who recently went on eternal patrol.  They are:  Bobby J Thomas, Robert "Robbie" Robertson, Shane Foraker and Erv Schmidt.


Photo by Dennis Nardone

Life and Holland Club member TMCM(SS) John Norris (ret)

gave a review of his Navy career along with detailed documentation.  John served in the Sterlet, Sargo, Greenfish, Andrew Jackson, Nathaniel Greene and Alexander Hamilton. John served in Alexander Hamilton for 7 years and was the COB for later  portion of his tour.


The business meeting was then conducted.  Each officer and committee member updated members on their tasks etc.


Commander Jim offered discussion on meeting day/time for the future.  Few had preference, but a split schedule was advocated by 3 or 4 members. The e-board will make this decision on this item and we will be informed by the commander before the next meeting.


Vice Commander Steve Corcoran and COB Wayne Peterson  brought in a delicious Corn Beef and Cabbage dinner we enjoyed after the meeting.  Thanks guys; you went above and beyond.



Bremerton Base Supporter Since Day One Passes
(Posted 3-16-2014)


Received the following note from Life Member Dene Rogers:


Sent: Saturday, March 15, 2014 4:51:15 PM
Subject: Beverly Rogers

Hi all. Beverly left us today, after a long difficult bout with Parkinson’s, for a better place. She will be cremated and will be buried in Washington in early summer. There will be remembrance of Life at Eudene and Trina’s home (Florida/ed) at 5:00 PM on Monday March 17.

Dene 360 649 5165


You can view Beverly Rogers primary contribution to the base here./Red




USVVI Members & Others attend Robbie's Grave Side Service

(Posted 3-16-2014)

About 100 vets and others gathered at Tahoma National Cemetery on Thursday PM, to say goodbye to one of our true heroes', Robert "Robbie" Robertson. Seven were Bremerton Base members.


Chaplain Joseph R. LaVoie, II presents American flag to Robbie's wife, Theresa, while family members and Navy flag bearers look on. More photos by WRD John Mansfield here.

Robbie qualified in submarines (enlisted) on the USS Tirante (SS-420) in 1945, qualified (officer) aboard USS Seawolf (SSN-575) and was a CDR when he left the Navy.

Robert “Robbie” D Robertson departed this life on his Final Patrol, February 21, 2014, with no regrets or dreams unfulfilled.

He was born in McKeesport PA in 1925 and grew up in Pittsburgh, PA. Robbie joined the Navy in 1943 and placed in commission and became qualified in submarines aboard the USS Tirante in 1944, making three war patrols including the stellar first war patrol which earned the Submarine a Presidential Unit Citation and Commanding Officer George L Street the Medal of Honor. He also served aboard USS Amberjack (1947-52), USS Odax (Temp Duty 1950), put USS Seawolf in commission (1955-60) and the Submarine Tender USS Nereus (1966-67). Robbie was first a Electrician Mate 2nd (SS), then changed rate to Electronics Technician 1st (SS), accepted a commission to Warrant Officer while in Nuclear Power training, and was progressively promoted up to Commander when he retired from the Navy in 1974.

One of his more memorable assignments was working for ADM Hyman G Rickover in the Naval Reactors Branch (1960-65). During this period of service, while supervising the movement of a nuclear reactor via rail, the train derailed and in spite of his injuries, he remained on duty on site for over 30 hours. His ‘Twilight Tour’ was at Bremerton Naval Shipyard from 1972-1974.

He was a Veteran of WWII, Korea, and Vietnam Conflicts, and was active in the Tahoma National Cemetery Support Group, Scottish Clan Donnachaidh Society and Seattle Highland Games Chieftain in 1998, Member of the Fleet Reserve Association, Seattle Branch #18. Past Washington State Commander and Past President & Secretary-Treasurer of the Lockwood Chapter, U.S. Submarine Veterans of World War II, also managing the Polaris Magazine distribution. He was a founder, Life and Holland Club member of the Seattle Base of U.S. Submarine Veterans Inc and Life Member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post #2995 of Bellevue, WA.

Following Robbie’s passing, because of his lifelong commitment to helping others, his wife Theresa determined to honor his memory by setting up a USSVI memorial scholarship to be given in his name.



Note From the Base Commander

(Posted 3-13-2014)



It is with a heavy heart that I send this message. Earlier today I received an e-mail from the National Office that informed me of the passing of Ervin O. Schmidt. Ervin qualified in submarines on the USS Saury (SS-189) in 1943 and was a RM1 when he left the Navy. He joined USSVI in 1998 and was a member of the Bremerton Base, Barbel Base, SSMC, and SVWWII. With Ervin departing on Eternal Patrol, let it be known that we have lost another hero. Sailor, rest your oar!

James DeMott
Base Commander
USSVI Bremerton Base


Update:  Erv's family will hold a Memorial Service for him in June.



Base's Youngest Active Duty Member To Join the "O" Gang

(Posted 3-5-2014)


Congratulations are in order to FT2(SS) Joe Hanisko, USS Jimmy Carter (SSN-23). Joe has received  the word that he has been selected to attend Officer Candidate School (OCS) in Newport RI later this year.  Below is the text of an e-mail he sent to the Base Leadership.


"Wanted to share the good news with you both. My XO informed me yesterday that I have been accepted to Officer Candidate School. I'll transfer to Newport, RI at an as of yet undetermined date later this year to earn my commission. The downside is I'll be leaving the submarine force but I was never eligible to be a nuclear line officer. Upon graduating from OCS, I'll be a part of the Surface Warfare community.

I wanted to thank you both again for welcoming me into Sub Vets, you've both been inspirational to me this past year. Hopefully we'll have the chance to have some more fun at a few parades before I have to head east again. I'll see you both at the meeting next weekend.

Take care,
Joe Hanisko"



Soup Down: A Social Gathering Every Friday

(Posted 3-3-2014)


Bremerton Base has many activities.  These include an annual picnic, a Christmas party, monthly general meetings, participation in 6 parades, annual Dolphin Dash, TTF SK sales, Memorial Day at Ivy Green, the fireworks sale (2 weeks of hell for the manger, but keeps the base financially sound); and a favorite, the weekly Soup Down.


Soup Down was established by the late Willie Spoon for two equal purposes:

1. To bring members together on a weekly basis to maintain the fraternity, and

2. encourage the establishments to contribute a raffle prize or direct contribution to the Bremerton Base's annual Lt. William "Willie" Spoon Memorial Scholarship Fund.

Friday Soup Downs, generally attended by retired submariners, partners and guests are scheduled out for a year in advance at local restaurants. Attendance varies from 12 to 30 and averages about 18.  A volunteer, George Schaefer, informs the the week's restaurant early on so they expect a crowd.


The following year's restaurants are provided for the schedule by Scholarship Chair John Gardner based on donations provided by the past years soup down restaurants.


Generally, Dennis Nardone, if in attendance, takes a picture or two and others do it at other times. They are displayed on the Soup Down Page.


Consider attending and share your experiences in life with others./Red



Become Part of U.S. Submarine History!

(Posted 3-3-2014)


Deterrent Park's 14th anniversary is this year.  We will be making our semi annual engraved brick installation on the missile deck of the USS WOODROW WILSON (SSBN 624) full size mockup, hopefully before Memorial Day Observance, May 26th.


Your 4.5 x 9", "submarine black", brick with engraved message can be installed in the submarine's missile deck.

Typical messages can be name, rate/rank, dates served, date qualified, or boats served on, in memory (Deceased Shipmates), or any other message that meets the decorum of the site. You will receive a certificate verifying the message to be engraved and a chart showing approximate location of your brick.

A donation for each brick is $40.00, which includes all engraving, administration, and installation costs. You may donate as many bricks as you wish.


Please consider making  a brick donation for yourself or honoring family members or others that you have respect for. Click for Application Form







Pacific Northwest Enlisted Submarine Ball

(Posted 2-15-2014)


Saturday, April 19, 2014

  • Sheraton Seattle

  • Social Hour: 1700

  • Program Begins: 1800

  • Tickets: Contact your COB/CMC for ticket information.

(Retiree's - Try 360-396-6821/ed)

Rooms: There are 150 rooms blocked off for Enlisted Sub Ball attendees at a group rate of $177.71 (with discount) but the rooms are filling up fast and may be sold out soon if not sold out already. The number to book a room is 1-888-627-7056.



2014 Pacnorwest Officers'

Submarine Birthday Ball


April 12 - mark your calendars and get your formal attire in order.
(Posted 1-28-2014)

Announcing the 2014 Pacnorwest Officers' Submarine Birthday Ball, sponsored by Commander Submarine Group Nine, and celebrating 114yrs of Submarine Service. The event will be held at the NBK Bangor Plaza Ballroom on April 12th, 2014. Social hour will start at 1800 with dinner to follow. We hope to see everyone at the event. Keep an eye out here for new announcements!



Canadian Submarine Centenary

 and commemorate the 1914 commissioning of HMC Submarines CC1 & CC2.

(Posted 2-11-2014)


Tuesday August 5th ~ Friday August 8th, 2014

 in Greater Victoria, British Columbia


During 2014 all Submariners are invited to join the Submarine Association of Canada (West) for the Canadian Submarine Centenary and
commemorate the 1914 commissioning
of HMC Submarines CC1 & CC2.

All details are not complete,  however the agenda is, and it and some details may be viewed on SAOC(West) Website, specifically on Centenary Page. 

An important note for you should consider immediately is possible accommodations at CFB Esquimalt, located at the bottom of the Centenary Page. Action needs to be taken NOW.

From personal experience, I can attest to the  fantastic hospitality  SAOC(W) hosts provide.  Updates later. /ed





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 Events




all runners and walkers


We are holding our annual Dolphin Dash April 12th on Bangor base. All proceeds go the USSVI Bremerton Base Lt. William "Willie" Spoon Memorial Scholarship Fund.

Starting Time and Place: Saturday April 12, 2014
• 9:00 a.m - 9:45 ...

Details + Registration before April 1



Applebees, Silverdale

Photo provieded by Dennis Nardone

Mar 7, 2014




May 2014

Deterrent Park Brick Install





Submarine Videos


Admiral Rickover

Navy Submarine Force - Silent Service

Sea Spies


Submarines of World War 1

How a World War II Submarine Works



The Silent Service (in color) - U.S. Navy WWII

U Boat War : Documentary on the Submarine

Battle of World War 2

The Largest Submarine in The U.S. Navy

Ohio Class Submarine | Combat Countdown

Trident Missile Launch From a  Submarine

Submarine Service In The 1970s

The Cold War- Submarines: In Enemy Depths

Cold War Spy Secrets Under the Sea

Watch out from below

Fast Attack

Submarines - Sharks of Steel Episode 1 - Submariners

Submarine USS Virginia Documentary

NEW SUBMARINE! U.S. Navy Takes Delivery

of PCU Minnesota

Megastructures - Super Submarines

Submarine nucleare (DOCUMENTAR)

Russian submarine History

Secret Russian Sub - Mission Invisible

Megastructures - Soviet Doomsday Submarine

Seconds From Disaster - S03E03 - Sinking Of Kursk

Raising the Kursk Part 1

Raising the Kursk Part 2

The Kursk Cover Up - Russia


Secret Submarine Rendezvous : Documentary on the

World War 2 Secret African Mission

HMS Victorious Trident Class Nuclear Submarine

How to build a Nuclear Submarine (2010)

Submarine Patrol 3/3 - Chasing the Enemy

Oberon Arrival in Halifax

RCN Submarines HD




Communications Supporters

Use or lose












       You Know Who...... Retires!





He booked himself on a Caribbean cruise and proceeded to have the time of his life, that is, until the ship sank.







He soon found himself on an island with no other people, no supplies, nothing, only bananas and coconuts.



After about four months, he is lying on the beach one day when the most gorgeous woman he has ever seen rows up to the shore.




In disbelief, he asks,"Where did you come from? How did you get here?"

She replies, "I rowed over from the other side of the island where I landed when my cruise ship sank."

"Amazing," he notes. "You were really lucky to have a row boat wash up with you."

"Oh, this thing?" explains the woman. "I made the boat out of some raw material I found on the island. The oars were whittled from gum tree branches. I wove the bottom from palm tree branches, and the sides and stern came from a Eucalyptus tree."

"But, where did you get the tools?"

"Oh, that was no problem," replied the woman.

"On the south side of the island, a very unusual stratum of alluvial rock is exposed. I found that if I fired it to a certain temperature in my kiln, it melted into ductile iron and I used that to make tools and used the tools to make the hardware."

The guy is stunned.

"Let's row over to my place," she says "and I'll give you a tour." So, after a short time of rowing, she soon docks the boat at a small wharf. As the man looks to shore, he nearly falls off the boat. Before him is a long stone walk leading to a cabin and tree house.


While the woman ties up the row boat with an expertly woven hemp rope, the man can only stare ahead, dumb struck. As they walk into the house, she says casually, "It's not much, but I call it home. Please sit down."

"Would you like a drink?"
"No! No thank you," the man blurts out, still dazed.
"I can't take another drop of coconut juice."

"Oh it's not coconut juice," winks the woman.
"I have a still. How would you like a Tropical Spritz?"

Trying to hide his continued amazement, the man accepts, and they sit down on her couch to talk. After they exchange their individual survival stories, the woman announces,
"I'm going to slip into something more comfortable. Would you like to take a shower and shave? There's a razor in the bathroom cabinet upstairs."

No longer questioning anything, the man goes upstairs into the bathroom. There, in the cabinet is a razor made from a piece of tortoise bone. Two shells honed to a hollow ground edge are fastened on to its end inside a swivel mechanism.

"This woman is amazing," he muses. "What's next?"
When he returns, she greets him wearing nothing but some small flowers on tiny vines, each strategically positioned, she smelled faintly of gardenias. She then beckons for him to sit down next to her.

"Tell me," she begins suggestively, slithering closer to him, "We've both been out here for many months.
You must have been lonely. When was the last time you played around?" She stares into his eyes.

He can't believe what he's hearing." You mean..." he swallows excitedly as tears start to form in his eyes,

"You've built   a Golf Course?"


U S Submarine Veterans NEWS (LINK)

Click this Link

When a USSVI shipmate goes on Eternal Patrol

Cold War Certificate Program

National Officers February on-line meeting result

American Submariner Article Submission Deadlines

2014 Convention Activity revision



Stuff you won't see in the local fish wrapper

Russia to Lay Down New Diesel Sub for Black Sea Fleet

Russian Navy Unveils New Class of Submarines

Navy Commences Participation In ICEX 2014

Three war vet now a rare breed

Second Man Pleads Guilty in Navy Bribery Scandal

Former Purser Convicted of Stealing from Ship Safe

Hypersonic Weapons Face Major Milestone In August Test

Navy Submarine Drones Will Predict the Weather Months In Advance

SEALs Seize Hijacked Tanker in Mediterranean

TM2 Henry Breault, USN - (Torpedoman Second Class)

Region commander to transfer early

No Verdict Yet in Former Navy Senior Chief's Trial

Eye on Ukraine, Carrier Stays in the Med

Pentagon boosting its push for underwater drones

'Consolidated' TRICARE: Higher Fees, More Freedom

Army: Some Men Won't Pass New Combat Physical

New Policy Could Send Sailors Back to Sea Early

Army's Acquisition Strategy Stuck in Reagan Era

Lieutenant William Maitland-Dougall

Navy Vessel Arctic Embezzlement Trial Starts

F-16 Drone (Robot) Video


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Published for American Submariners by USSVI Bremerton Base -Webmaster Don "Red" Bassler