Summer, 2014

Greetings from the Sterett Association

Apologies for the long wait for the newsletter.
It was delayed waiting for settlement of the reunion location.

Reunion 2015
Following a long and arduous search, the location for the 2015 Sterett Reunion has been decided.

Our reunion coordinator, Bill Mallow, worked diligently to find the best deal in the Puget Sound area.

Many thanks to Bill, and also to Denis LaCrosse who provided invaluable assistance.

The members at the 2013 reunion voted to have the reunion in the Seattle WA area. There were a number of area locations and property proposals looked at and eliminated for various reasons. In searching for a good location, there are a number of factors that govern our selection:

Room rates: we realize attending a reunion can be an expensive undertaking, especially for those flying in. We look for reasonable room rates at a decent hotel. Cheap rooms aren't always the best.

Meeting rooms: Since a large part of a reunion involves sitting around with shipmates trading life's stories, we want meeting rooms that provide a comfortable gathering.

Banquet facilities: We look for a hotel that can comfortably seat our guests and provide a decent menu at a reasonable price.

Bar/Cocktail Lounge: Having an onsite bar is another factor we look for. After all, we are reuniting old school sailors from the 7TH Fleet.

Easy Access: We look for a location that is relatively easy to get to from the area airport.

We are pleased to announce the 2015 USS Sterett Association will be held at the:

La Quinta Inn & Suites
Tacoma
1425 East 27th St
Tacoma, WA

Dates: Thursday, Sep 17, 2015 through Sunday, Sep 20, 2015
(Thursday being an early arrival day) / Rooms will be available for $99.00.

We'll have much more information in future newsletters as other arrangements are firmed up but:

Pencil it in on your calendar and start making plans to join us. It's never too early.

The Puget Sound area is full of great things to do and see.
If you might consider a hop up to British Columbia, make sure your passports are up to date.


Cruise Book Project
I am very pleased to announce the Sterett Cruise Book project is complete!
All of the DLG/CG 31 cruise books have been digitally converted and are posted on the Sterett Association web site for viewing.
The books cover the following periods:
67-68, 68-70, 72, 73, 75-76, 1979, 81-82, 83-84, 87-88, 90-91, 93 CentAM
See www.sterett.net/cruise-books There's also a link from the Sterett home page.

Thanks to the Sterett shipmates who entrusted us with their cruise books for conversion.

Special thanks and a BZ to Tom Jacobsmeyer (DLG 31) for his tireless efforts in doing the actual conversion. These books were not scanned. Tom took a digital image of each page in order to produce the sharpest, most complete images without damage to the book binding. He then cropped and tweaked each image.
As we highlighted in a previous newsletter, Tom is an active volunteer with the Coast Guard Auxiliary and currently holds the position of District Captain in the Los Angeles/Long Beach area of Southern California.
Special thanks also go to our webmaster, John Badeau. JB was hired as the Sterett webmaster back in 2011. In the months following, he did a total site overhaul and redesign. He does a great job keeping the site current. Getting all the cruise books posted up on the web site was a tedious task and we appreciate his hard work.
~ your welcome


DDG 104

The DDG 104 had a change of command recently.
CDR Theodore Nunamaker relieved CDR Stewart Bateshansky.
The new CO had this to say:
"It's important to recognize the many significant accomplishments the ship has achieved under Commander Bateshansky's command. They are a testament to his vision and leadership," said Nunamaker. "I feel privileged to take command of such a well-trained and motivated crew, and I am confident we will continue to carry out our duties with the boldness, daring, and initiative demonstrated by previous generations of Sterett Sailors."
Description: CO_Nunamaker.jpg
CDR Nunamaker
On behalf of the Sterett Association, I want to thank CDR Bateshansky for his strong interest in recognizing and upholding the legacy of the Sterett's that preceded the DDG 104. His interest in identifying and proudly displaying artifacts from the DD 407 and the DLG/CG 31 were greatly appreciated. Fair winds and following seas as you continue your Naval career.

To CDR Nunamaker:
Congratulations on assuming command of a great ship. We in the Sterett Association are at your service. We look forward to hearing and reading about the continuing outstanding performance of the DDG 104 as she takes her place in a long line of outstanding US Navy ships named Sterett.


DD 407
I recently received an email from the niece of a DD 407 shipmate:

My uncle, Robert Keith Harman, was a radioman aboard the Sterett DD 407. He had previously been on the Aaron Ward (DD-483) from the time it was launched until it was sunk off Guadalcanal in April 1943. Following that he was assigned the Sterett, 23 May, 1943, as a Radioman 2nd Class. He stayed with the ship until 8 October of 1944, having made Radioman 1st Class. He was detached before the Sterett left Puget Sound again, and assigned to the Attack Transport USS Gallatin (APA-169), which he served on until transferred once more, to the USS Princeton (CV-37).

He remained in the Navy until discharged, as a Radioman Chief, 13 August, 1946. He was called back up, 6 June, 1951 at the outbreak of the Korean War, to teach at the Naval Training School, in Bainbridge, MD, where he received his second, and final discharge, 3 October 1952.

My uncle died in Palm Desert, CA, 7 February,2003, one week shy of his 83rd birthday. He was awarded six battle stars and six medals/ribbons by the end of his service.

Of the remaining shipmates, I would love to know if anyone who served aboard the Sterett during the time frame he was there, May 1943 through October 1944, knew or remembers him.

Robert Keith Harman


FTMC George Cline:
The following is a journal update from FTMC George Cline's wife Dottie published in The Caring Bridge:

It has been awhile since I brought you up to date on George. The winter was hard on him like everyone else. He got so bored staring at all of that snow. We have been outside a few times but the wind has been so cool. We have had a little set back now. We have been to ER a couple of times and ended up with an UTI and on antibiotics. But after all the cultures were in it came up that he has MRSA. So now we are in the Witham Hospital in Lebanon with the big gun antibiotics dripping in. He keeps running a fever so infection is still in there. He went into the hospital on May 6. They have done all kinds of test trying to locate it. His left knee was swollen when he went in and it has been warm so the infection disease doctor brought in the orthopedic doctor today and they decided to operate on his knee and drain all of the fluid. They got a lot of fluid off and some of it didn't look good so hopefully that was the infection. He has a drain in it now for a couple of days and hopefully he will keep the fever down now. As soon as the infection and fever is gone then he will be going back to Parkwood in Lebanon for rehab and therapy. Then more therapy once he gets home again. He was resting comfortably when I left tonight so time will tell. Keep us in your thoughts and prayers.
Dotty and all the family.

George continues to battle from the stroke he suffered in February, 2012. Please keep him in your prayers. He loves to hear from his shipmates. His email address is chiefgac78@aol.com

Sterett Passing:
I recently learned of the following passing:
Billy Grone MM3 DLG 31 1970-1972 passed away June 12, 2009.


The Legend of Olongapo City
(No – not that legend!)

Once upon a time, along the shores of Subic Bay, there was a village. Its leader, an old man, was famous for his love and care for his tribe. The leader was known as Apo. He was intelligent, good and just. He favored no one and treated every one fairly. He was loved by all.

The village of this model Apo became a good example for the nearby settlement. His name became a byword. Any dispute and conflict he resolved with justice and fairness. He inspired goodwill and nurtured hope in his people to combat sufferings brought about by calamities. However, because of his greatness, evil men with intentions of conquering his tribe became envious of him.

One morning, the village was awakened by the news that Apo was taken by unscrupulous tribesmen. The villagers searched for the Apo in the forest and mountains for several days but in vain.

One day, the villagers were taken by surprise when a boy returning from the forest, claimed that he found the head of the Apo at the foot of the mountain, impaled on a bamboo pole, They soon learned that the Apo was killed by his abductors, who cut his head off in order to cast fear among the villagers and succeed in their evil intent.

Realizing that they should now bury their beloved Apo with all the honors, they met the boy carrying the head amid loud shouts of ÒUlo ng ApoÓ (head of the chieftain). This become the rallying cry for the village and inspired the villagers to unite against all the enemies.

But the village, instead of being frightened became enraged because of the hideous thing done to their beloved leader. The villagers punished the culprits and in order to cherish and emulate the example of the leadership shown to them by Apo, they called their village ULO NG APO (head of the chieftain). Thus the community was named OLONGAPO.

Vietnam Action
We ran the story of the bravery of the helicopter crew in the rescue of the downed pilot over North Vietnam in the previous newsletter. Here's a copy of the Navy Cross citation presented to the pilot, LT(jg) Wiant:

Wiant Navy Cross.jpg

Sterett Challenge Coins:
Sterett shipmate Tim Trend recently designed a challenge coin for those who served on Sterett (DLG/CG 31). The coins were advertised and made available for order through the Sterett Facebook pages. I bought 2 of these coins as did several other Association members. The general consensus is these coins are stunning. The picture does not do them justice.
Sterett Challenge Coins
Tim has graciously allowed the Sterett Association to make a bulk purchase of coins to be sold through the ship's store. They have been ordered and will be available in about three weeks. Check the Sterett web site for updates.

Sterett Association Support
Many thanks to those who have recently either joined the Association or brought their dues up to date.
The latest Member's List :
(The rows highlighted in blue are DD 407 shipmates who are exempt from paying dues.)

As of 27 April 2014
Last NameFirst NameDues Paid Year
ActonRichard2011-2014
AlexanderLeonard2008-2015
AllardRichard2013-2015
AntonStephen 2013-2018
BaumgartnerLane2013-2016
BellMark A.2009-2015
BerryDavid2010-2017
BilakDavid2006-2015
BlountThomas E Jr2006-2015
BoltonJames E. "Jim"2009-2016
BotkinJuanita DD 407
BrehioEdward DD 407
BuchananMichael2013-2014
CalhounCal DD 407
CampRalph2011-2014
CampbellJim2013-2014
CaravellaTony2014
ClineGeorge A.2006-2014
CookDonald 2014
CornforthMike2006-2016
CowanVan 2007-2014
CoxDavid2014
CrossFred2009-2015
CucchiaraAndrew2009-2015
De Vinney JrLloyd2012-2014
DeanDennis 2006-2015
DietzBurton2013-2016
DoanLiennhu2011-2014
DouglasRichard2014
EarneyJerald D.2006-2020
FarnhamCharles G.2014-2015
FoxEdward2006-2016
GarrisonMerton2007-2016
GarrityMichael2006-2015
GenetRichard P2014-2015
GoodsonWialliam A.DD 407
GroenerRobert "Duffy"2006-2016
HadaWilford2006-2016
HagemanDonald2008-2014
HagerKenneth2008-2015
Haley Joel2011-2014
HaileyJames2014
HayesStephen2010-2015
HennisDavid2012-2014
HerronWilliam2006-2015
HilliardDale2008-2016
HolcombeRandolph2013-2014
HutchinsJacque DD 407
JacobsmeyerThomas2006-2015
JohnsonHarold "Howie"2009-2015
JohnsonTrey "Dewitt"2013-2014
JohnsonRobert2009-2016
JohnsonTrey2013-2014
KeiranFrank2011-2014
KincaidHomer2008, 2014
KingJohn E.2008-2014
KirkJeffery2008-2018
LaCrosseDenis2007-2014
LaceyTodd2014
LaytonStephen DD 407
LefebvreChuck (Frenchy) DD 407
LeFebvre2013-2015
LittletonRobert2013-2015
LongWilliam H. DD 407
LujanBruce2014
MalcolmRonald2006-2019
MallowWilliam2007, 2013-2014
MarcusRichard B.2004-2015
MaresCarl R.2006-2015
MarrsArt DD 407
MartinRichard DD 407
MarusaMike2009-2015
McAllisterDavid2014
McBrianWayne2007-2014
McCulloughHenry DD 407
McGuireRobert V.2006-2014
MickelEvan2010-2014
MillerEldenMember Emeritus
MoeJerry2006-2014
MontgomeryGary2006-2014
MooreMichael2013-2014
MotzLawrence 2006-2021
MurphyBrendan2012-2014
NessJames2014
NessGeorge2014
NicholsGary 2013-2017
NortonRandy2007-2017
OistadGary2014
PageTim2014
PayneDarrell2013-2020
PhanLana2013-2017
PhungLe T2008-2015
RainsDavid 2006-2014
RobinsonJames E. "Robbie"2011-2015
SandbotheBradley S.2013-2016
SedrelSteven2011-2014
SextonNick2014
ShermanFredrick DD 407
SmithDanny2014
SmithMike2011-2016
SnaderRobert2011-2015
SportsWilliam (Bill)2014
StellaWilliam DD 407
SterettDeborah A. "Debbie"2008-2016
StevensRichard 2006-2015
SullivanGeorge E2006-2015
SullivanLarry2006-2015
ThayerDwight E.2009-2015
ThompsonTommy DD 407
TruongTri2014
TrotterJames2013-2014
VincentJerry2013-2018
VerrenTerry2013-2017
VitezBarry2013-2014
VuDelafer2013
WasingerPhil2013-2014

Why pay dues??
Like any organization, the Sterett Association has operating costs. The Association is a registered Non Profit organization and all Association officers serve voluntarily. The membership dues of $20 each year take care of operating expenses like maintaining and hosting the web site, providing inventory for the ship's store, covering reunion start up costs, etc.

The Sterett Association has been a strong organization since its inception. We can only remain strong with the continued support of our members.

Please take a moment to visit the Sterett web site and update your membership. Click Here


Book suggestion:
We're not starting a book club but I was asked by Rick Campbell, a retired Navy Commander, if we could mention the book he recently had published. It's gotten very good reviews and would be of interest to those who like Navy based stories of suspense.
Check out:
The Trident Deception
Available at Barnes and Noble or through Amazon.
The Trident Deception



Watch for Reunion and Puget Sound information in future newsletters and start thinking about attending.

Sterett Association Reunion Tacoma Washington

You talkin to me? You got somethin to say?
The Sterett Association welcomes any and all input from its members and supporters. Please don't hesitate to submit comments or other items of interest for inclusion in our web site or our newsletters, including pictures. We want to hear from you.

For the Sterett Association:

Steve Hayes