Posted by: arbeam | May 31, 2016

May 29: Military Spouse Appreciation Night

Kitsap Mall

On Sunday, May 29th 2016, Swarner Communications & the Northwest Military publication held their 2016 Kitsap County Military Ladies Party at the Kitsap Mall.

It was a rainy day outside but approximately 250 military spouses showed up at the event for free activities, pampering, music, food and drawings. The Bremerton Olympic Peninsula Council of the Navy League attended as a vendor to inform the women that as spouses of an active sea service member they can join to promote and support our Navy, Marines and Coast Guards here in Kitsap County.

The event was a big success we got 2 new members for our Council & at least 4 others that seemed very interested.

Posted by: arbeam | May 27, 2016

May 23: USS Turner Joy (DD-951) Tour

USS turner-joy_145

The Bremerton Historic Ships Association graciously welcomed 13 Navy Leaguers and guests aboard the museum ship and US Navy Memorial USS Turner Joy (DD-951) on Monday, May 23, 2016.  We were set up into two groups, each escorted by a ship’s docent.

The Turner Joy, named after a famed admiral, was built in Seattle and was launched on 5 May 1958.  The last of the Forrest Sherman class, the ship is 418 feet in length and can attain a speed of 32+ knots.  Turner Joy was decommissioned in 1982 and has been a museum ship serving as a Navy Memorial since 1990.

Our tour began at the torpedo launchers where the various torpedo types and uses were discussed.  Adjacent is the replenishment station where ship to ship underway replenishment took place.  The first thing sent across was always mail, followed by movies.  Everything else then followed, with a priority for TP.

Turner Joy BridgeWe visited the CO and XO staterooms and then the bridge where underway operations and chain of command were discussed.  After looking into the adjacent Combat Information Center through the necessary plexiglass shield we were able to actually enter the space through another hatch.  It Turner Joy7was here that part of the famed Tonkin Gulf Incident played out on 2 AUG 1964 when USS Maddox and Turner Joy noted possible enemy contacts and fired on them.  Later analysis suggests that what was seen was “sea return” rather than actual contacts.  It is likely to always be a mystery.

The maximum ship’s company is 320 but Turner Joy usually carried more in the range of 270 personnel.  From the ward room we move on the forecastle on the forward deck where 5” gun operations were discussed and then checked out the officer’s quarters and sonar, where search is conducted for submarines and when contact is made torpedoes are (as necessary) launched.   The chiefs’ quarters followed and the E-6 mess deck and chiefs’ mess.

140803-N-OO032-008 BREMERTON (Aug. 20, 2014) Navy Region Northwest chief selectees paint USS Turner Joy gun mounts while participating in the USS Turner Joy Chief Petty Officer Legacy Academy. The academy entails living aboard the Vietnam-era destroyer for six days while participating in community relation projects, ship preservation, leadership training, reenactments of Vietnam-era operations and heritage projects relating to the U.S. Navy and its Chief's Mess. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Cory Asato/Released)

Of interest is that Turner Joy still serves the active duty Navy as a location for the Legacy Academy for newly promoted chiefs.  Promotion ceremonies are also held aboard ship and volunteers from the local area active duty Navy perform community service by helping with maintenance aboard Turner Joy.  Scout and other groups can arrange overnights aboard, as well.

In the engineering space we inspected the now cold boilers which once provided 975 degree steam at 1200 pound pressure for the turbines which drove the ship.

Although there was much more we did not see, time ran out and our great tour had to conclude.  There is much information about the ship posted in many places and a return visit for personal touring is strongly recommended.  Turner Joy is also an excellent destination for a visit when entertaining guests from out of town.  A major dry docking for hull inspection and preservation is tentatively planned for next year, but more funds need to be collected for that purpose.  A fund raising program is underway.

Sincere appreciation to our hosts and to Byron Faber for arranging the tour. Norman Marten


Posted by: arbeam | May 27, 2016

PCU Washington (SSN-787) Adoption Ceremony

CO (CDR Jason Schneider), STS1 Maynard, Pat & Byron Faber, COB (ITSCM Burchette), ETN1 Fernald, EM1 Benzschawel

PCU Washington (SSN-787) CO (CDR Jason Schneider), STS1 Maynard, Pat & Byron Faber, COB (ITSCM Burchette), ETN1 Fernald, EM1 Benzschawel

On May 2, 2016 Byron and Pat Faber of the Bremerton-Olympic Peninsula
Council of Navy League, representing the Washington NL councils, met with
CDR Jason Schneider, CO of the USS Washington (787), LCDR Brian Rhoades XO, and the crew at a conference room at the shipyard where the boat is well along in stage of construction. PCU Washington was formally adopted by the Bremerton Navy League Council.  The articles of adoption were read to the crew.

STS1 Maynard

Their Sailor of the Year, STS1 Maynard was presented with the eagle statue
from our Council by Dr. Faber. STS1 Maynard is the go-to guy for many tasks
on the boat. He often volunteers for extra duties and they always know that
whatever it is, it will be well done. He expressed great pleasure at
receiving this award from Navy League.

Byron then addressed the crew regarding what it means for our Councils to
adopt them and how proud we are for the association. With less than 1% of
Americans serving in the armed forces, they are already in the status of
elite warriors. We mentioned our sincere desire for them to be able to make
a port call at Bremerton on their way to their future home port at Pearl
Harbor. We assured them of a warm welcome!

Adoption Dinner

That evening the Fabers had dinner with the Schneiders (Jason and Bonnie)
and the Rhoades (Brian and Cortney) at one of Newport’s fine restaurants.
These are delightful people and a great association for our Councils.

Posted by: arbeam | May 27, 2016

May 26: Tolling of the Boats NBK Bangor

Tolling of the Boats

BANGOR, Wash. (NNS) — Sailors, veterans and civilians attended the “Tolling the Boats” ceremony hosted by Commander, Submarine Group Nine at Deterrent Park at Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor, May 26.

Originally established by the U.S. Submarine Veterans of World War II, the memorial ceremony honors the submariners who lost their lives in the line of duty. During the ceremony, the names of each of the U.S. submarines lost, along with the fate of its crew, are read aloud as a ship’s bell is tolled.

“We are here today to honor our veterans, to remember their courage and dedication, and to say thank you for those that gave the ultimate sacrifice,” said Cmdr. Paul Reinhardt, commanding officer, USS Alabama (SSBN 731) blue crew. “Tolling of the Boats reminds us of the debt of gratitude we owe to both our departed shipmates and submariners today, who defend our country, while serving silently under the sea.”

The U.S. submarine force suffered the highest percentage of losses of any branch of the armed forces during World War II.

Retired Master Chief Electronics Technician Richard L. Litscher, a member of United States Submarine Veterans, attended the ceremony. “Our credo is built on those who went before us,” Litscher said. “Our purpose is to perpetuate the memory of our shipmates who gave their lives in the pursuit of their duties while serving their country. That their dedication, deeds and supreme sacrifice be a constant source of motivation toward greater accomplishments.” Litscher graduated from boot camp in 1958 and retired after 20 years in the United States Navy. He served onboard multiple submarines including USS Trumpetfish (SS-425).

At the end of the ceremony, the names of the 52 submarines lost during World War II, along with the fate of its crew were read by retired Capt. Bill Rothert and Electronics Technician (Navigation) 1st Class Gerardo Hernandez. Rothert served on five submarines while on active duty from 1961 to 1985. Hernandez recently transferred from USS Texas (SSN-775) and is currently serving as an instructor at the Trident Training Facility in Bangor, Washington.

The “Tolling the Boats” ceremony has been held on Memorial Day weekend since 1977.

Navy news article by Amanda Gray


JackJames lgOur June 14 Luncheon Speaker Jack James Director of the USS Turner Joy (DD-951) US Naval Destroyer Museum on the Bremerton Waterfront.

USS Turner Joy (DD-951) was the last ship in the Forrest Sherman – class of destroyers. Her keel was laid down on Sept 30, 1957 in Seattle, Washington by the Puget Sound Bridge & Dredging Company, was commissioned on Aug 3, 1959. Turner Joy is credited with firing the first shots of the Vietnam War in the Gulf of Tonkin Incident. She is also credited with firing the last naval gunfire shots of the war. Turner Joy (DD-951) was decommissioned in November 1982, and was selected as a U.S. Navy memorial in November 1988.

Jack graduated from Bremerton’s West High School. He was a U.S. Naval Sea Cadet with the Yorktown Division in Bremerton. He enlisted in the Navy in 1972 and graduated from the Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL (BUD/S) training in February 1973. Jack was commissioned in 1981, and has a Masters Degree in Strategic Intelligence. Jack retired in 2007 after 35 years with the SEAL Teams.

In addition to his work as the Director of the Turner Joy (DD-951), he serves as a Seal Team Legacy Recruiter. He is very active in youth programs serving as the Bremerton Navy League Director of Youth Programs. He works with our NJROTC units, Sea Cadets, Boy Scouts and the YMCA.

The Bremerton Historic Ships Association is in the process of raising funds to cover the required 10 year drydocking for hull preservation scheduled for next year.

Location is the Bangor Conference Center, Trident Ballroom, NBK, Bangor.

Doors open at 11:00, Lunch begins at 11:30

Registration: Please call Evergreen Transfer & Storage at 360 674-2762 for your lunch registration. Please call before June 7.

  •  Members without base access; processing time can take weeks.
  • Please give your name as it appears on your driver’s license.
  • Spell your name to make certain that it will be correct on the gate access sheet. Provide your date of birth and city of birth.
  • Members without enhanced WA Drivers License need to be on the base access list or be escorted.

Turner Joy 052515

The general pubic is invited to attend a Memorial Day Service and Wreath Laying Ceremony, Monday, May 30 at 10 AM on the fantail of the historic ship, USS Turner Joy (DD-951), on the waterfront in Bremerton. Bremerton-Olympic Peninsula Council Navy League President Tim Katona, serves as Master of Ceremonies. The Guest Speaker will be LCol Scott Reed, Commanding Officer of the Marine Corps Force Security Battalion Bangor.

Come early, as seating is limited. The USS Turner Joy (DD-951) is located near the Bremerton ferry terminal at the north end of the marina. Parking is available at the Convention Center nearby. Coffee and donuts will be provided in the ship’s crew’s mess after the ceremony.

Derek Kilmer Lions Breakfast 2013For many years on Armed Forces Day, prior to the parade, the Lions host their annual Pancake Breakfast on Fourth Street in downtown Bremerton. Proceeds from this event allow the Lions to give at least one $1000 scholarship to a worthy Bremerton High School student each year.

Lions AFF Breakfast Patty Lent



“Foundation for Freedom!”

Northwest Navy Parade BandThe Armed Forces Day Parade held in Bremerton is the largest and longest running Armed Forces Day Parade in the Nation. This year is the 68th year of the event held each year on the third Saturday of May in downtown Bremerton. The Grand Marshal for the Parade is ADM Scott H Swift Commander US Pacific Fleet.Bremerton AFF Parade

The parade route begins at Sixth Street and Chester Avenue, down to Park then proceeds down Park street to Fourth Street, Left on Fourth to Pacific Avenue, left on Pacific past the viewing stand at Fifth Street and ends on 9th Street.

Heroes BBQ

The Heroes Barbecue is honoring our military families provides a free Hotdog, chips and a soda meal to all Active Duty, Reserve, Retired Veterans and their families. The barbecue gives active and retired military personnel a chance to kick back and relax after the parade. Military attendees and their families are given a meal, free of charge, as a thank you for their service. This is a community affair, Harrison Hospital donates the food, Puget Sound Energy brings out their emergency grills and cooks, and Washington Youth Academy serves the food.

Gala 3

Join us for the Annual Navy League Gala to honor our Military and recognize our community and political leaders. Each year, as the finale to Armed Forces celebrations in Bremerton, our Navy League Council honors the local military commands by hosting the only black tie event, aside from formal Adm Scott Swift CPFmilitary balls, in the area. The Grand Marshall of the Armed Forces Day Parade is traditionally the guest of honor and this year, ADM Scott H Swift, Commander US Pacific Fleet, will be our guest speaker.

2012 Gala MaineAdditionally, as part of the evening, our council presents a special, annual award to the Trident submarine crew who has achieved the top marks in battle efficiency. Competition is very competitive and this award is coveted among the boats homeported at Naval Base Kitsap. Our council started this trophy bowl many years ago and now a similar award is provided in Kings Bay, Georgia to a submarine that is homeported on the East Coast.

The Bremerton-Olympic Peninsula Navy League Gala is a significant social event of the year in Bremerton and each year we recognize very special people for their outstanding contributions to our council and the military. Guests will have the opportunity to meet and mingle with one another prior to and following dinner and the program. Alejandro will perform Flamenco guitar after the official ceremony.


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