ÓÔCopyright 2000-2008 and Trademark of the Navy Nuclear Weapons Association. All rights reserved worldwide.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
The Navy Nuclear Weapons Bulletin is produced by the Association’s Board of Directors and is distributed free to NNWA members. Edited by: Dave Cobb.
The Presidents Message
Shipmates and Ladies,
The Niagara Falls Reunion was a sounding success and Ray and Mary Margeson and all those who helped deserve a hardy well done. We now can look forward to our next reunion to be held in Bremerton, Washington. John and Beth Gray are hosting this reunion and have provided a preview of what they have planned so far and what is available in Bremerton. I hope everyone will try to attend.
Goals for 2008 are as follows:
1. Finalize NNWA’s tax-exempt status with the IRS.
2. Continue the development of the Photo Roster. We need our members to get behind this effort if it is ever going to be completed. We will use the portrait photos from the past two reunions to get started. Therefore, any member who does not want us to use their photo please let Dave Cobb or me know. Your silence will be interpreted as authorization to publish the photo in the roster. Dave Cobb is the point on this goal and all submissions of photos should be forwarded to him either by e-mail or snail mail. The size should be either a 4x6 or 5x7.
3. Get more members to volunteer as candidates for election to the Board of Directors. This year as in every year there are five (5) positions up for election. Anyone interested please convey your interest to me or one of the other Board members.
4. Continue looking into additional Logo items to be made available to the membership.
5. Try to increase our membership by 10% in 2008.
The Board of Directors has approved providing each member in good standing a 5in Logo Decal for your support of the Association.
I want to thank Alex Gabbard for volunteering to host our 2010 Reunion in Nashville, TN. I know we will have loads of fun there so start making your plans to attend.
I’m looking forward to seeing everyone in Bremerton.
SERVICE OFFICER’S REPORT
1. The 2008 National Defense Authorization Act is on hold. Following Congressional delays for Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, passing the NDAA was frustrated by anti-war members who have introduced non-related amendments. The two houses finally came to agreement and passed a bill to President Bush, who refused to sign it thereby creating a pocket veto. The Congress now claims what the President did was un-Constitutional. As the political battle ensues, hanging in the balance are many items important to retirees, such as:
· SBP/DIC Offset (Widow’s Tax)
· 30 year paid up SBP plan inequities
· 10% cuts in Medicare/Tricare for Life
· Tricare fee increases
· Full concurrent receipt for disabled, unemployable military retirees
2. 2008 COLA is 2.3%. This will apply to military retired pay, SBP, social security and VA compensations effective 1 Dec 2007 and will be reflected in checks on 2 Jan 2008.
3. DFAS has failed to meet its 15 Nov 2007 deadline for paying retroactive pay for over 133,000 retirees who receive CRDP/CRSC over 48,000 still go unpaid with no “get well” date given.
4. Agent Orange lawsuits have been filed by the VA in its attempt to deny “blue water” Navy veteran’s compensation for AO presumed medical conditions. Stay tuned. Remember, if you earned the Vietnam Service Medal and have Adult-onset Type II Diabetes, you should file a claim with the VA for service connected disability. I spoke with claims adjudicators at the Philadelphia Regional Office recently and they indicated that they thought the VA would lose its case and ALL Vietnam vets would receive the same consideration for compensation.
5. VA has failed in reducing backlog and processing time for veteran claims. With a current goal of 160 days and a long term goal of 120 days, the average 2007 claim took 183 days to review. The backlog grew from 377,000 to 391,000 claims.
6. Tricare Prime has a new on-line location for account management. Go to:
7. Shingles can be prevented with a one-time vaccine immunization with Zostavaxa. If you had chicken pox disease (not the shot) as a child, the virus is still in your body. As you age and your immune system weakens, the virus can re-appear in your nervous system as shingles – a very painful condition. All Tricare plans will reimburse for this if an authorized provider gives the shot. The shot is available at VAMCs, however, each center decides how it will make the shot available. Bear in mind that the shot gives an ACTIVE virus, not a dead one. Consult with your doctor regarding the pros and cons of getting the shingles shot. Note that Medicare Part B also pays for Flu, Pneumonia and Hepatitis-B and some other immunizations.
8. Data Breaches abound!
· The huge 2006 VA breach releasing personal info on millions of vets which is still in litigation and mediation with the victims.
· 2007 Tricare breach involving records of 867,000 service members
· 2007 TSA data breach
· April 2007 arrest of a former VA auditor (and a reputed Korean gangster) who stole 1.8 million veterans’ SSN’s, got credit cards and started spending on them.
· 10 Nov 2007 theft of 3 VA computers with veteran info on them. The VA will contact you if you are involved and give you one year’s free credit monitoring.
Remember – you don’t need to be enrolled with the VA for them to have your personal info. Info on all vets was transferred from the individual services to the VA. Protect yourself because the government won’t.
9. Beware of Fundraisers that claim to benefit various veteran causes. A recent review of a Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA) fundraiser for homeless vets revealed that over 80% of the amount donated goes to the telemarketer. The same was true for a Navy affiliated program
To send packages to overseas military members: The American Institute of Philanthropy (AIP), a leading charity watchdog, issued a report card this month for 29 veterans and military charities. Letter grades were based largely on the charities' fundraising costs and the percentage of money raised that was spent on charitable activities. Following is an alphabetical summary of charities and grade assigned:
Air Force Aid Society (A+) American Ex-Prisoners of War Service Foundation (F)
American Veterans Coalition (F) American Veterans Relief Foundation (F)
AMVETS National Service Foundation (F) Armed Services YMCA of the USA (A-)
Army Emergency Relief (A+)Blinded Veterans Association (D)Disabled American Veterans (D)Disabled Veterans Association (F)Fisher House Foundation (A+)Freedom Alliance (F)Help Hospitalized Veterans/Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes (F) Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund (A+) Military Order of the Purple Heart Service Foundation (F) National Military Family Association (A) National Veterans Services Fund (F) National Vietnam Veterans Committee (D) Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society (A+) NCOA National Defense Foundation (F) Paralyzed Veterans of America (F) Soldiers' Angels (D) United Spinal Association's Wounded Warrior Project (D) USO (United Service Organization) (C+) Veterans of Foreign Wars and foundation (C-) Veterans of the Vietnam War and the Veterans Coalition (D) Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund (D) VietNow National Headquarters (F) World War II Veterans Committee (D).
Check out the fundraiser. If you ask them, they have to tell you the percentage that goes directly to the activity. If they can’t or won’t, they aren’t worthy of your donation.
10. American Legion mistake – If you are a Legionnaire you may be among the 844,000 veterans who received a letter informing you that you had lost your VA benefits. This is not true. A contractor for the Legion sent the letter to encourage members to start or renew a particular Legion benefit. The contractor miswrote the letter to read that if action were not taken, all veteran benefits would be lost. A letter of correction and apology will be sent to all who received the incorrect letter.
11. Tricare for Life Explanations of Benefits will available to members as an option to the printed format effective January 2008. Go to www.TRICARE4U.com for questions on this call 866-773-0404.
12. How Much Is A Billion?
· A billion hours ago, pre-humans were discovering their first tools in the Stone Age.
· A billion minutes ago, it was 104 A.D. and the Chinese first invented paper.
· A billion seconds ago, it was 1975 and the last American troops had pulled out of Vietnam.
· A billion dollars ago was only 3 HOURS and 32 MINUTES ago at the rate our government spends money.
13. Military Retirees Note – DFAS has sent out Annual Retiree Account Statements. This is an excellent time to review your retired pay status. Things you should check include:
a. Taxes and with holding status
b. CSRC/CRDP waivers and offsets
c. Allotments, Tricare, Insurance and Bond Deductions.
d. SBP beneficiary and Arrears of Pay beneficiary on the reverse of the form. We know of at least one retiree whose beneficiary information was incorrect.
If you do not get your statement by the end of January, or detect any errors or have any questions or changes to make, call DFAS at 800-321-1080.
Yours in service,
Registered Veterans Service Officer
Your web site has experienced a greater number of visitors since the last newsletter was published in June! Until then, the average daily visitor count was 34, but in the last six months of 2007 that moved up to 41 – we had about 9000 visits since last year. We have picked up some new members who find us on the Internet – so keep referring your friends to www.navynucweps.com.
We now list future reunions – as far as we know – in two places on the web site; under Reunions (of course) but also in the History section under the officer and reunion record at the bottom of the page.
As we find bad e-mails, I will post the names of the folks whose e-mail doesn’t work on the front page of the web site. If you see your name (or that of your buddy) let us know of the correct e-mail address. We save quite a bit of Association money through the use of e-mails to communicate to you – and having a correct e-mail address helps a lot.
As blogs (web logs) become more prevalent, the NNWA web site is trying to keep up. We now have a listing of member blogs (only two there so far) on the Links page on our website. Send me the address of your blog and as long as it is not commercial or pornographic, we will publish the address.
Our guest book is still being plagued by “spammers” and I am clearing up to 30 (and sometimes more) of the junk posting daily. I usually clear out the bad stuff in the morning and afternoon. So, feel free to use the guestbook – I won’t delete your entry, but you may have to dig a little to find the last real entry.
And FINALLY – let me remind you of our Locator and Help sections on the web site. Send your questions or your people searches and I will post them! We have a lot of experience and memory out there, take advantage of it.
Hope to see you in Bremerton in September!!
Ray C. Margeson
MINUTES OF 22 SEPTEMBER 2007 BUSINESS MEETING
Navy Nuclear Weapons Association business meeting was held at The Quality Hotel & Suites, Niagara Falls, New York. The meeting was called to order at 0900 with all Board Members present except Mike Snyder, and attended by 50 members in good standing.
The President asked for all present to stand for the opening prayer by Chaplain Lonnie Cucinitti followed by the pledge of allegiance to the American Flag. All present remained standing as Lonnie Cucinitti conducted the 2-Bell ceremony to honor our shipmates who transferred to the Supreme Commander’s Staff: CWO3 Robert (Bob) Baynes,GMT1 Robert Landon, CWO4 Jack McCarron, GMTCS Ray Steele, GMTCM Edward J. Pearson, GMT1 John (Jack) Schimming, GMTC John (Jack) Swartz and CWO3 Donald (Joe) Zink.
The President called for introduction of new members: Ed Daniels and Bill Eck.
The President called for the minutes of last year’s general membership meeting to be read.
The minutes of the 2006 business meeting were read by the Secretary. The Secretary had no additional information to report.
The President entertained a motion to accept the minutes as read. A motion was made, seconded and vote carried to accept the minutes as read.
The President called for the Treasurer’s Report.
a. The Treasurer passed out copies of the financial report to the membership. The Treasurer stated that there were outstanding bills to pay for this year’s reunion (approximately $2200.00).
b. The President asked for a motion to pay all outstanding bills. A motion was made, seconded and approved to pay all outstanding bills.
The President reported on the 2007 Association accomplishments as follows:
1. The SOP/PDL is a working document, assembled by the Board of Directors over the past couple of years. It is in its final approval stage and the Vice-President will be the point of contact for the control and management of this document. This document is approximately 90% complete.
Next year I hope to have it on the website where everyone can read it.
2. Mike Snyder is continuing to develop a listing of all individuals who worked in the Navy Nuclear Weapons Program (Navy, Marines and Civilians). This is a living document and growing all the time. However, Mike still needs input from the membership to keep this growing process going.
3. We have reviewed the By-Laws and have developed a proposed change which was distributed to the membership in the June 2007 Bulletin. You will be voting on the proposed change later in the meeting.
4. We have procured NNWA Logo Belt Buckles and are now available for purchase from Lou Rivera. Along that same line, Frank Kelly has looked into T-shirt/Polo shirts and has set up a procurement system with a distributor. I will let Frank fill you in on how it will work in his report.
5. We have started the collection of photos for photo roster that the Board has approved. Photos of you and your spouse/significant other should be sent to Dave Cobb, our Secretary. We need each member’s permission to put the photos in the planned albums.
6. The NNWA reunion-planning guide has undergone its annual review, and changes incorporated.
7. Our membership drive continues and this past year we added 26 new members.
The President then asked each board member to give their report:
1. The VP is responsible for what is stocked in the Hospitability Room. This is part of the reunion planning guide and is adjusted after each reunion according to what was used.
2. Unidentified pictures on table need to be picked up.
3. The VP announced he was not going to run for the board this year.
4. The VP thanked Ray and his wife for a great reunion.
b. Secretary Dave Cobb:
1. Pictures for the proposed NNWA albums. We have advertised in the last 2 newsletters, and so far have only received three. Get the word out to all non-attending members to send pictures if they want to be included in the albums.
2. Try to talk to people you know who are not currently members who were in the program and get them to join the NNWA. Also try to encourage people to attend reunions.
3. Any old Navy Nuclear Weapons related material that you may be thinking of discarding, please send it to Mike.
c. Service Officer Chuck Weber:
1. The National Defense Authorization Act is currently held up in the Senate. Hanging in the balance are many items relating to retirees, such as the SBP/DIC Offset (Widow’s Tax)
2. Also awaiting resolution is the 30 year fully paid up SBP inequity for those who retired between 1972 and 1978. They will currently pay up to 34% more for SBP.
3. Further held up in the NDAA are a variety of entitlement and inequity corrections for CRDP and CRSC. It is also proposed to dissolve the 10 year phase in plan.
4. 2008 COLA currently looks to be between 2.3% and 2.5%. This will apply to military retired pay, social security and VA compensation.
5. A Senate bill was passed clarifying Title 4, Chapter 1 of the US Code. While never prohibited, it was unclear whether veterans not in uniform could salute the flag. The bill was unanimously passed allowing veterans to salute the flag.
6. Protect your identity and check your credit record at least once a year. Last year there was a huge VA data breach releasing personal info on millions of veterans. This year there was a Tricare data breach involving 867,000 service member records and another one at TSA. Go to www.annualreport.com for a copy of your credit report.
7. Tricare has a new, more user friendly website – www.tricare.mil.
d. Storekeeper’ Report:
1. Against sales of $540.00 we had expenses of $80.00 leaving us with a net of$450.00.
2. We had sales of $723.00 at the reunion, with no expenses.
e. Webmaster’s Report.
1. Pirate day is a real day; I did not make it up.
2. As of yesterday, we have had over 71,000 hits on our website.
3. The ‘Locator’ and ‘Help’ sections of the website are not being used as much as I would like.
4. Within the next few weeks we are going to combine the memorial pages.
5. Photographer will be here tonight.
d. The Historian’s Report (Read by the VP- Bill Grizzard).
Bill first asked for a showing of hands as to who knows what spalling and exudate is. A large portion of those present raised their hands. Then he read Mike’s input:
1. First let me apologize for not providing you with a first class memorabilia display to pique your interest, initiate conversation, and bring back old memories. I especially wanted to show Don Micco what we’ve done with the material he gathered over the years and all the new items so freely donated by the membership, past and present. The model display, mostly from Don’s own hands, is particularly impressive and I’m sorry it isn’t here for all to see.
2. The member’s response to my appeal for the names of Navy Nuclear Weapons Program participants as been rewarding. I receive something by snail-mail or e-mail almost weekly. Folks have sent cruise books and copies of the W Division pages, ships company photos, group orders to schools, personal photos, and the like. As I went through the collection looking for items to send to this reunion I was impressed by the numbers of photos and names of men we have accumulated. We’re doing fairly well in amassing the list of program participants, but I beg for continued contributions. In my mind I can list, perhaps, fifty to a hundred people I knew while active in nuclear weapons and I bet most everyone can do the same thing. Please continue to send copies of W Division photos with names and ranks.
Send copies of orders with those eight or ten names that went to NWTC PAC or LANT for school while you were in the shipyards. Send me lists of names from your memories! No document can reproduce who and what you know. The NNWA intends to gather names from whatever sources are available to identify as many as possible who were our shipmates and comrades in arms in the Navy Nuclear Weapons Program. Please help in this endeavor.
3. A letter from Don Boyer, one of our shipmates from Hawaii was read. Don invites any NNWA member who has historical information on NAD Waikele to submit information to Don Boyer. His address is:
67-476B Haona Street
Waialua, HI 96791
Some of the items I sent this year are collections of personal accounts of experiences and personal collections of records, orders and photos. I started years ago writing about my own experiences in the special weapons program to answer my kids question ‘What did you do in the Navy, Daddy’, because like all of you, I didn’t talk about my work in the depots, the magazines and the ships. Let me tell you that it is easy and enjoyable experience that grows with the effort. I ask and challenge all of you to get your memories on paper. You’ll enjoy it, your kids and grandkids will thank you for it and the NNWA collection will be enhanced by one more personal recounting of his contribution to holding the fort during the Cold War.
And, one last item….We received a significant contribution from a signature collector named Paul Roales. Paul is not a member of the NNWA, but thought we might enjoy knowing about Lt. Donald Lindberg, USN whose records he bought over the internet. Briefly, Lt. Lindberg graduated from the Naval Academy in 1943 and spent the war in destroyers. He was ordered to the Armed Forces Special Weapons Program (AFSWP) in 1948 and remained there until 1951. Mr. Rloales sent us copies of orders, records and documents that detail some very interesting aspects of the nuclear weapons program that might be unknown to many of us. Primary among these is proof that there was such a thing as a ‘Q’ Clearance, long a debated subject among the NNWA membership. I invite you to view Lt. Lindberg’s memorabilia on our website at navynucweps.com. Go to the history section, then arrow down to Lt. Donald S. Lindberg.
Start writing sailors. Everyone will be better for it.
I truly wish I were there with all you Keepers of the Dragon.
The President thanked Ray and Mary Margeson and all who helped for this outstanding reunion.
As the first order of new business the President announced that 5 positions were open on the board and up for election by the Membership. He informed the Membership that, in accordance with the By-Laws, the following Officer positions were also up for election by the new Board during the Board Meeting to follow the general meeting: Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer, Webmaster and Historian. He then turned the gavel over to the Nominations and Elections Chairman Chuck Weber to conduct appropriate nominations and elections.
Chuck provided an overview of the responsibilities of being a Board member, followed by nomination and voting procedures. The first position up for election was for Vice-Present. Bill Grizzard indicated he did not wish to be considered this year. Larry Sneide was nominated and seconded. He informed the membership that Dave Cobb, Frank Kelly, Ray Margeson agreed to remain on the board if reelected, and strongly recommended their reelection. The fifth position was the Historian. Mike Snyder was not present, but submitted his willingness to serve by signed letter. Three calls were made for nominations for each of the five open board member positions. Five separate nominees accepted. They were: Larry Sneide, David Cobb, Frank Kelly, Ray Margeson and Mike Snyder. These 5 nominees accepted. Chairman Weber requested a motion from the floor stipulating the Secretary cast a ballot in favor of each nominee representing the unanimous consent of the Membership. Motion was made, seconded and passed unanimously.
The next order of business was to vote on the by-laws amendment that was published in the June newsletter. Chuck Weber read the proposed by-laws changes to the membership. Chuck informed the membership that a 2/3 majority of members present were required to approve changes to the by-laws.
2007 By-Laws Amendment Notice
In accordance with NNWA By-Laws Article VII, the Board of Directors provides the following required notice for amendment of Bylaws:
SECTION 3. EX-OFFICIO. The Immediate Past President shall be an ex-officio member of the Board. This member shall be entitled to participate in the deliberations of the Board, but shall have no vote, unless that individual shall otherwise be serving an elected term on the Board.
Proposed Amendment as follows:
SECTION 3. EX-OFFICIO. The Immediate Past President shall be an ex-officio, non-voting member of the Board of Directors for one year following his/her term as President and may advise the incumbent President of relevant matters spanning their respective terms of office. This member shall be entitled to participate in the deliberations of the Board without a vote unless that individual shall otherwise be serving an elected term on the Board.
Purposes of the Amendment
To clarify that the purpose of the ex-officio position is to provide continuity in information between Presidents.
To limit the position to one year.
To remove redundancy in the event that the IPP is elected to another Board Position.
Submitted for the Board of Directors,
The change was called for a vote and was approved without dissent. The new Article VIII is listed above and will be included in the NNWA Bylaws.
The President announced the 24th (2008) NNWA Reunion will be in the Western Region, at Bremerton Washington, tentatively scheduled for Sept 17th thru 20th 2008. John Gray will be the host. More information will be available in the January news letter.
The 25th (2009) Reunion will be in the Central Region. The President announced that Dallas Texas will be the site of the 2009 reunion. Lonnie Cucinitti has agreed to host that reunion.
The President opened the floor for suggestions for the 26thth reunion, which will be in the eastern region. Nashville was suggested. The Georgia/South Carolina area , Lancaster, PA, and Charleston was also suggested. There were no other locations suggested.
The Navy Wall in Washington was talked about as to buying a position to place our NNWA logo dedicated to all who server in the Navy Nuclear Weapons Program. Cost for a 3 ˝ by 5 inch plaque would be approximately $3000.00. The President indicated he would put this before the board for consideration and report back to the membership.
There being no further New Business, the President called for the closing prayer and adjourned the meeting at 10:30
David L. Cobb
Spalling and Exudate
The Historian’s Report
I have much to report to you this time so I'll eliminate my personal observations and simply say, "Have a Happy and Healthy New Year and I'll see you in Bremerton"
The memorabilia shipped to Niagara Falls to support the reunion was picked up at Ray Margeson's home and rode safely to California in the back of my truck, arriving a day or two before Thanksgiving. Jean and I drove 9000 miles in 72 days this outing. I still feel poorly for not being able to attend the reunion, but health issues wrecked our schedule. We'll do better next time.
I've communicated with a number of people concerning the initiation, life and expiration of the Navy Special Weapons Program. Some are looking for information, others are providing it, and some are looking for help. Here's a summary.
Don Boyer wrote and provided computer copies of several school completion certificates. He also sent an FZ alarm control panel from the security tower at Waikele. These will take their places among the memorabilia for display at reunions. In the course of our discussion he mentioned he had assumed the task of writing the history of NAD Oahu, Waikele Branch, and was seeking information from the Navy Department, service members and civilians who were stationed or worked there. The information gathered thus far is primarily from Marines and he wishes for more Navy input. Additionally, Don asks, "What was the use for the D-group magazine that had the four large Mosler safes?" Can anyone answer that? Please contact Don with your Waikele information. I'm sure we'll all be pleased with the results. firstname.lastname@example.org 67-476B Haona Street,Waialua, HI 96791
Alex Gabbard, our prospective 2010 reunion host provided a significant amount of information regarding the special weapons program which I will post in the website History section. Notably, Alex sheds more light on the "fabled" Q Clearance issue. Here's what he had to say:
Having held a Q clearance for most of my adult life, in both the special weapons and nuclear research fields, I certainly can vouch for existence of the clearance. It is my understanding that the "Q" clearance originated for the library designation of nuclear subjects. (Do a library search of books on nuclear science and they will all lead with Q followed by Dewey Decimal numerical designation.) During the early days, nuclear science information was just being developed and was easy to control in its own category, especially for being so entwined with classified military applications that permitted keeping the subjects and documents generated obscure, being confined only to those with the need to know. So, only those with need to know were granted a Q clearance, and only those working in nuclear weapon applications had the need to know.
Alex is one of three NNWA members I know of who have published books on their experiences in the Special Weapons program. His is, "Adventures of an H Bomb Mechanic" (GPPress, 2005) He donated a copy to our library. I haven't read it yet, but it's on my list. Alex has a website www.alexgabbard.com and may be contacted at GPPress@att.net 1829 Grubb Rd. Lenoir City, TN 37771, 865-988-0080.
Jim Little released his book "Brotherhood of Doom", (2007) in December. It recounts his 30 year Navy career, primarily in the nuclear weapons business. Jim also donated a copy to the
And finally, Ralph W. Danklefsen, the last NNWA author known to me. When I first joined the NNWA I learned of his printed personal history and purchased a copy. I read it cover to cover and found it historically interesting. One fact that stuck with me was that Ralph was aboard the last USN ship, a fleet tug, to leave Tsingtao, China in advance of the Japanese occupation prior to WWII. He was an NSWA (Navy Special Weapons Association, forerunner of the NNWA) board member in 1987. Unfortunately, his book is buried in my as-yet-unpacked library and I can give you neither the title nor publisher. If your interested, write to me and I will open boxes to find it.
If there are other authors of published works among the NNWA membership, please tell me and, perhaps, send a copy of your work for the memorabilia.
Ray Margeson forwarded an e-mail to me containing information about an effort, originating in Albuquerque but now expanding nationwide, to assist museums in the collection, restoration, appropriate display and correct textual content of items associated with the nuclear weapons program. Ray Macallister, a member of the NWTA (Nuclear Weapons Technician Association), our Air Force counterpart and a Sandia Corp. employee, is spearheading the informal program. In a lengthy phone conversation with this spark-plug of a man I learned that many museum-potential pieces of nuclear weapons history are now coming into the light as the Armed Services clean out warehouses and closets. These old trainers and shapes are about to be destroyed if they are not absorbed by museums across America. In his unique position at Sandia, Ray is able to locate and earmark weapons items that may be suitable for display and is asking for help in contacting interested museums and assistance in demilitarizing, physically preparing, assembling, and shipping museum quality NW items for display. This includes complete Type III training weapons. Ray writes:
To All our Navy Brothers,
have not intentionally excluded museums featuring our sister services but because of other commitments we have been visiting mostly Air Force museums and museums featuring Air force Delivery Systems. It is now time to open up to the other services and support their museums. We have been setting aside several navy only displays including BOARS and Hotpoints. We have plenty of B57's, 43's and 61's. Please contact me if you wish to participate as the support for the Navy. The National Atomic Museum, Sandia labs, LANL and the NNSA are strongly behind this effort.
We are inviting any of you out there who is interested in this project and would like to dust off their skills to E mail me and let me know what you would like to do. In addition to turning the wrench and spray painting we will need writers as we are generating unclassified weapon descriptions, maintenance procedures and record keeping. We also will need folks who can provide advice and knowledge to the Museums. The work will need to be done all across the country not just here at KAFB (Kirtland AFB, Albuquerque, NM). So if you have an aerospace museum nearby, advise them about this effort and tell them to contact the NWTA or myself. This will mostly be on a first come first served basis while trying to match available assets to their needs.
Ray further proposes that a Center, under the auspices of the NWTA, be formed with the following charter
Be an information clearing house for Nuclear Weapon Displays
Be a source of standardized information for the preparation of these displays
Be a source of expertise for the displays
Be a coordination point for distribution of assets
Be a source of volunteer help and expertise for museum displays
You can read more on this by going to the Nuclear Weapons Technician Association website at www.usafnukes.com, on the left side of the screen, arrow down to "The Bays", then select Museum Project.
THIS IS IMPORTANT SAILORS AND WE NEED TO HELP. THIS PROVIDES US THE UNIQUE OPPORTUNITY TO GET OUR HANDS BACK ON WEAPONS AND COMPONENTS WHILE DOING SOME GOOD FOR POSTERITY.
Contact Ray Macallister at email@example.com or by phone in Albuquerque at 505-400-5495.
Last item: A former shipmate requests information. I received this e-mail and thought someone might be able to help him.
Ward, Kevin P SFC NGCA [firstname.lastname@example.org]
My name is Kevin Ward I served under Captain Peter k. Glasier from July 1986 thru October 1989 at the Nuclear Weapons Training Group Atlantic. I would like to know if they ever were awarded any Navy Commendation Medals for the unit during the time periods I served as an YN3 there.
Please contact me with any info patches or memorabilia from that period of time which I could use for my shadow box I'm trying to construct. Also interested in contacting anyone from that time whom I served with.
SFC Kevin Ward, U.S. Army
That's all shipmates. Don’t forget to write about your experiences. If it's not written, history will view it as a non-event. Please continue to send lists of names, copies of group orders, copies of pages from cruise books and so forth. We continue to gather as many names, ranks, rates, duty stations as possible for our overall listing of people in the Navy Nuclear Weapons Program. Be safe, stay well.
Mike Snyder, NNWA Historian / Memorabilia Custodian
58 West Crescent Drive
San Rafael, CA 94901
Treasurer’s Report January 2008
As the keeper of the membership roster and Treasurer let me welcome our new members who have joined our organization since the last newsletter.
Nixon, Gary C. Hanby, Richard K. Davis, Michael C.
Blount, Karl S. Lindsey, Jr. Zack P. Paul, Buddy L.
Hedrich, Charles Ramsey, Marshall N. Roy, Larry W.
Evans, Edward C. Doherty, Patrick D. Slayton, John A.
Three Members have been placed in the past members column on the roster because of dues being in arrears. If you know the status of these or any past members listed on the roster PLEASE notify the treasurer or any member of the board.
Larson, Larry W. Smiecinski, Karry L. Sheets, Joseph H.
We now have 580 members listed on the membership roster. 404 Members in good standing, 42 Life Members (spouses of deceased members), and 133 past members. Past members will not be sent newsletters or reunion information until the dues are brought up to date. If you are unsure if your dues are up to date and receive your newsletters by mail, the date on the upper right corner of the mailing label show the month and year to which your dues are paid. If you receive your newsletter electronically and wish to know your dues date log onto our website (navynucweps.com) your dues date will be listed in the dues date column on the right of your name. Some of our members find it convenient to pay dues several years in advance, this can save you postage and the TREASURER lots of time. Membership is $10.00 per year, if you are listed in the past members section and wish to reinstate your membership, Send $10.00 reinstatement fee plus $10.00 for each year you wish to pay your dues. This is an effective policy due to the cost of mailing new letters and reunion information. A current membership roster is posted on our website. Member not on line may request a hard copy of the membership Roster by calling or writing Frank M. Kelly, 1087 Frank Kelly Rd, Society Hill, SC, 29593, 843-378-4026. For our survival it is imperative that we keep our membership roster and dues up to date. Please review the roster and notify the Treasurer or any member of the board of any changes to your current status.
Note: It’s not too late to break your New Years Resolutions.
Frank M. Kelly
2008 Bremerton, Washington
The 24th Annual Reunion will be in Bremerton, Washington, September 24-28, 2008
Check www.navynucweps.com often for the latest information. What we have to date is as follows:
It will be held at:
Hampton Inn & Suites Bremerton, WA
150 Washington Avenue, Bremerton, Washington, USA 98337
Tel: +1-360-405-0200 Fax: +1-360-405-0618
The Hampton Inn & Suites Bremerton, WA hotel is the newest hotel in Bremerton, Washington located on the Bremerton Waterfront, next to "Kitsap County" Bremerton Harborside Conference Center. The Seattle, Bremerton Ferry Terminal is adjacent to the hotel. You can enjoy great views of Sinclair Bay as the Seattle Ferry passes by. The hotel is a convenient location for the cruise lines departing from the Seattle Waterfront.
The Hampton Inn & Suites Bremerton hotel is nearby to the following Washington area attractions: Puget Sound Naval Ship Yard, USS Turner Joy, Kitsap County Historical Museum, Bremerton City Hall, Bremerton High School, Keyport Weapon Station and Bangor Sub Base. McCormick Woods, Gold Mountain and Trophy Lake are excellent golf courses all close to Bremerton. The ferry terminal, which has numerous daily runs to Seattle (1 hour ride) and Port Orchard (15 minute ride), is about 200 feet away from the hotel.
70 rooms are reserved at the government 2008 per diem rate, which is currently $79 per night. Also reserved are 5 suites at $129 a night for us, there may be a few more available if we need them. Reservations can be made now, referring to our group name, the Navy Nuclear Weapons Association.
Parking is at the garage under the hotel, $5. per night.
Transportation options from the airport include the Kitsap Airporter, providing door to door service between the airport and the hotel, so anyone flying in can just walk outside baggage claim and catch a ride. The cost is $17 one way or $35 round trip.
As far as tours and events, in consideration is a Seattle tour, the self paced 2008 Double Decker Tour so one could see Seattle at your own pace with Hop-On / Hop-Off Double Decker buses. Hop off at any stop to explore on your own, and then hop on another bus whenever you're ready. Buses depart every 30 minutes from seven centrally-located stops including Downtown Shopping District, Seattle Center / Experience Music Project (EMP) / Space Needle, Pioneer Square / Underground Tour and Pike Place Market. Reservations are not required. Double Decker Tours tickets and schedules are available on board. Buy one ticket @ $19, ride the second consecutive day Free. Members could take their time and explore Seattle at their own pace.
There’s simply so much to see and do in the Bremerton area, it would be impossible to list them all. Here’s just a partial sample of the wonderful attractions that await you:
The Naval Memorial Museum of the Pacific
Commonly known as Bremerton Naval Museum, has been in continuous operation for 50 years. It is located at 402 Pacific Avenue in downtown Bremerton, one block away from the ferry dock. Hours are 10 am until 4 pm Mon thru Sat and 1 pm until 4 pm Sunday’s year around. Among its many artifacts is a bamboo wrapped wooden cannon of Korean origin dating back to around 1377 AD; A 1000 lb bell from USS Bremerton (CA-130); Furnishings from Admiral Dewey's wardroom aboard USS Olympia during Spanish-American War; Photos from the attack on Pearl Harbor as well as photos from the Japanese surrender signing aboard USS Missouri. There are many artifacts from the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard and one of a kind ship models.
USS Turner Joy
The USS Turner Joy is a refurbished Vietnam-era destroyer that is now a floating museum operated by the Bremerton Historic Ships Association. Moored at the north end of the Bremerton Boardwalk, the ship can be explored topside and below decks. The tour also includes a Vietnam POW memorial. The ship is a popular location for group events, reunions and guided tours.
Bremerton Harborside and Louis Mentor Boardwalk
Stroll along the Louis Mentor Boardwalk to enjoy some of the best views in the county. The Harborside is located right next to the ferry terminal along beautiful Sinclair Inlet. You’ll enjoy the playful fountains, wide plaza and relaxing gathering places as you watch ferries, sailboats and wildlife.
The simple pleasure of Bonsai trees over one thousand years old await you at Elandan Gardens. The spectacular gardens also feature more than two acres of rhododendrons and Japanese maples along the shores of Puget Sound. Elandan Gardens offers a serene setting in which to view nature’s wonders. Don’t forget to stop by the eclectic gift shop full of antiques and worldly treasures. You may also catch a glimpse of a bald eagle floating gracefully overhead.
Kitsap County Historical Society Museum
The museum has one of the finest collections of historic photographs in the area. Museum exhibits include a model of a logging camp and scale models of typical early storefronts in the town. Rotating exhibits depict various aspects of the county’s history and programs pertaining to local history. The museum shop offers unique books and gifts that are sure to please everyone on your gift list. In addition, the museum archives are available for historical research.
Suquamish Clearwater Casino
Gaming enthusiasts can find the fun and action of Las Vegas right in Kitsap County. Clearwater Casino offers slots, blackjack, tournaments, bingo and more. The facility Has recently expanded to include a fabulous resort hotel. In addition, the Clearwater Cabaret offers live entertainment and you can grab a bite to eat at one of the fine restaurants or delis inside the casino.
If there is enough interest a golf tournament/outing will be arranged.
John and Bethany Gray are organizing the reunion. They can send a more detailed presentation of the Bremerton area by email. It is a large presentation, but if members desire a copy send John an email at: email@example.com
RV Parks Kitsap County
1. Eagle Tree RV Park
Call at 360-598-5988
Located between Historic Poulsbo and Bainbridge Island on the Kitsap Peninsula,
Eagle Tree RV Park is accessible from many thoroughfares.
Minutes away, the Hood Canal Bridge is the gateway to the Olympic Peninsula.
A scenic 35 minute ride aboard a Washington State Ferry takes you to downtown Seattle and Interstates 5 and 90.
Open Year Round, Club House with Kitchen, Big Rig Friendly, 88 Full hook-up sites, 30 & 50 Amp Service, Pull-through sites, Restroom's and Shower Facilities, Laundry Facilities, Propane, Secure Environment, Private Wooded Sites Available, On Bus Line, Nightly, Weekly and Monthly Rates, Modem Hook-up Available, Cable TV Hook-up Available, Broadband Fast Internet Available, Owners on Site
2. RV Parks & Campgrounds at Washington State Parks
The only military RV Park is Jim Creek Recreational Facility located just outside of Arlington, WA about 1 1/2 hours north of Seattle. Nestled in the foothills of the North Cascades, Jim Creek serves as a Naval Radio Station and regional outdoor recreation facility for active duty personnel, reservists, retired military, DoD civilians and sponsored guests. It is probably too far away to be considered for the reunion.