ClickGertrude check


  Issue/Date 20140331


Saturday, April 05, 2014 12:28 PM

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...................

CSS3 Image Buttons

Scholarship Applications Due in by Monday, May 5th.

(Posted 4-5-2014)


The completed Lt. William “Willie” Spoon Memorial Scholarship applications are due in house by Monday, May 5th, 2014.


Also, if you have inclinations of serving on the scholarship selection committee, please contact John Gardner at 360-692-8994



All Runners & Walkers

(Posted 4-5-2014)


This coming Saturday, April 12th, Bremerton Base sponsors the annual Dolphin Dash at NBK, Bangor commencing at 0900 behind the MWR gym.  Helpers need to be there then to register participants and provide help in other areas. 



Base E-Board Votes to Have Split General Meetings Schedule

(Posted 4-5-2014)


Today, Saturday, April 5, the Bremerton Base E-board voted 4-1 in favor of a split General Meetings Schedule.  That means that April through September meetings will commence on the third Tuesday evening of the month at 1900 (7PM).  The October through March meetings will commence on the third Saturday morning of the month at 1000 (10AM). Exceptions to this will be no meeting will occur in December (Christmas Party  to suffice) or in the summer month when the annual picnic occurs.


E-board meetings will remain on the first Saturday on the month at 0900 (9AM).


All events are kept up to date on base calendar in the left column on this page. Click on date with color and it will pull up large calendar showing details.



And Then Came Atomic Submarines!

(Posted 4-5-2014)


Bremerton Base Life Member Bruce Pierson featured in Northwest Navy Life.


Bruce Pierson began volunteering at the age of 18 when he enlisted in the U.S. Navy. He continued volunteering for nearly 24 years, which ultimately shaped into a rather unique naval career.

Born in 1928 in La Grande, Ore. the 86-year old is the oldest of six children, five brothers and a sister. His father, a mechanic and truck driver in the logging and road construction business, routinely relocated his family to small towns in the northwest, mostly in Oregon, as he followed the work.........


After Cusk, Bruce, once again volunteering, joined a team of what was to become the Navy’s first atomic submariners. The 28 enlisted and two officers in the group attended school in an old farm house near Pittsburgh, Penn. It was an extension of a nuclear design and manufacturing facility, a conversion led by the Westinghouse company back in the city.

The group would become the original plank owners of USS Nautilus (SSN 571), which would become the Navy’s first nuclear submarine.

“Five Nautilus plank owners actually came from USS Cusk,” said Bruce. “It was a lot of studying. We started studying on Nautilus in June of 1952 and didn’t go to sea until January of 1955.”  Read all!



Base Members Make Monthly Showing At Trident Training Facility (TTF)

(Posted 4-4-2014)



As shown here on Wed, April 2, 2014, Bremerton Base members made their monthly visit to the lobby of the Trident Training Facility, NBK, Bangor during lunch hour to meet staff and students, exchange tales of their silent service and show them some submarine paraphernalia the base has to offer.


Base members also informed the staff and students of USSVI national and Bremerton  Base events and programs available to the membership and encourage them to join, as active duty submarine personnel are submarine veterans.



(L-R) Scholarship Chair, John Gardner, Storekeeper Ralph Harris and USSVI Western Region Director and Bremerton Base Member John Mansfield.



Base Storekeeper, What A Guy!

(Posted 3-30-2014)


Most of us know that Base Storekeeper, Ralph Harris, is compassionate and giving person.

Recently at Robbie's graveside service, Ralph presented Seattle Base member Karl Krompholz with a blanket to give to his grandson, Colby Pretz, who is suffering from MDA.  I was cc'd on e-mail from Colby, and will share with you. Red


"Dear Ralph,

   Thank you for the "Super Cool" Lap Blanket. It keeps me warm, and snug as a diesel boat sailor in his rack, while watching TV.

There were 58 "Likes" when my mom posted this picture on Facebook. You must be a very special person because, like my grandpa, you were a Submarine sailor. Maybe this year we can
meet, you if you come to the Auburn, Veterans Day Parade.

Colby Pretz"
More about Colby





Life Member Goes on Eternal Patrol

(Updated 3-27-2014)


WWII Vet and Life Member Lester "Ray" Franks, 87, STCS(SS) USN (ret) went on eternal patrol within the last week. Ray 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!







Lester Raymond Franks
of Bremerton
Nov. 9, 1926
to March 10, 2014

Ray Franks, 87 of Bremerton, suddenly passed away on March 10, 2014. Ray was born Nov. 9, 1926 in Palco, Kansas but spent most of his youth in Calgary, Alberta, Canada until he joined the U.S Navy at the age of 17.

On May 4, 1950, he married Victoria Elaschuk. He served honorably for 22 years in the Navy, achieving the rate of Senior Chief. Ray's memory will live on with his loving wife of 64 years, Vicki; his only son, Les and his wife Denise; niece, Anita and her husband Jim Sheehan; along with many nieces and nephews in Canada.

Ray loved his family. His life touched more than he will ever know.

Per Ray's request, no service. His ashes will be taken to sea.

Donations can be made to your favorite charity.




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

(Updated 3-23-2014)


Hotel deals are being negotiated now.  "Will be posting a package prior to mid-April"/Bob Emery.

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



Soup Down?: A Social Gathering Every Friday

(updated 3-22-2014)


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





Summer Hours

Starting in April
3rd Tues , 1900 (
 at FRA 29

521 National Ave,

Bremerton, WA


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

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



Silent Service

Food to Dive for

(produced by USSVI Farragut Base)


Great 9"x7.5" Hard Covered 3 Ring Binder with over 300 pages of recipes and other good stuff about Submarine Service crusine.  Check SK Ralph for this $20 bargain.



U S Submarine Veterans NEWS (LINK)

Click this Link

RIVERSIDE: Plaque at national cemetery to salute submariners

Submarine Pictures - maybe including your boat?

Sea Poacher Base needs your help!

Nominations requested for the USSVI "Joe Negri" Shipmate of the Year Award

Nominations Requested for the Ben Bastura Historical Achievement Award

Confessions of an SSBN Sailor

Award Nominations Requested - Silver Anchor Award

Robert "Bob" Link Commendation Award

National Board Mid-Term Summary Report

USS Miami Decommissioned

Politics and USSVI



Stuff you won't see in the local fish wrapper

Volunteerism leads to unique naval career

Plaque At National Cemetery to Salute Submariners

Admiral Warns that Risk of Nuclear Conflict Is Growing

Sailors' Opinions Sought In Sub Survey

Former Navy Workers Sentenced in Fraud Scheme

Report: 'Feces march' on destroyer crossed line

NAVSEA Employees Recognized by Department of the Navy

USS Tucson Participates in Japanese Submarine Competition

Ernie "The Kid" Plantz and the USS Perch

Photos: The Pacific and Adjacent Theaters in WWII

Confessions of an SSBN Sailor

Base security in spotlight again after deadly shooting

Cold War Echoes Under the Arctic Ice

US Submarine Arrives in Subic

Navy Terminates Ice Camp

Two people are confirmed dead after a shooting on board the USS Mahan at Naval Station Norfolk


Japanese Officials: Unidentified Submarine Near Okinawa

Sailors that served aboard the U.S. Navy’s nuclear ballistic missile submarines were unsung heroes of the Cold War

Navy still needs small surface combat ships and Mayport will be the hub

An illustrated guide to the Atomic Bombs

Top Back Page

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