Saturday, February 13, 2010

In the Navy . . .

That's the song I've been singing all weekend!  After this week's visit by the Navy to our center, I had the chance to go to the city to enjoy some Navy-inspired festivities over the weekend.

February 2010 010Sharon and I decided to go on Friday night to hear 'Top Brass' perform again, this time with a couple Mozambican bands who were so cool.  We are definitely looking for where and when we can keep enjoying those bands here locally. 

Then we headed over to the Marine Guard House (that where the Marines who guard the Embassy live) for a potluck in honor of the sailors that was from 3-12.  We were some of the last people there, I think we left just before midnight! 

Although there are no photos to prove it, I have to brag a little to say I was part of two teams, once with Melissa and once with Jeff, who played foosball most of the evening.  I think we must have played about 12 games and only lost once, and then only by one point.  I loved it!  But my wrist is still hurting today!February 2010 011February 2010 019

While we were there, one of the Embassy staff came and asked if Sharon and I would like to take a tour of the two Navy ships on Saturday.  Of course we would!  So we got to tour the USS Nicholas and the HSV-2 Swift.  It was fun to see some of the sailors who had served at our center on Wednesday or were at the potluck the night before in their uniforms and doing their jobs!  February 2010 016   February 2010 033 

This is the Swift, isn't it cool looking?  It's a re-designed ferry!  I may have over simplified that but that's what I got out of the tour. 

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Defending the Flag and all it stands for!

Thanks sailors for serving your country and the world!


Meghann said...

Wow...sounds like you and Sharon had a blast! I can't wait to go hear those bands again with you!!! Hope all is well and know I miss you!

John Clement said...

Very interesting post.

My interest lies in the flag. Note it is a little beat up and consists of only 48 stars, probably going back to World War II.

Do you know who this flag came to be on USS Nicholas FFG 47 which was not put in commission until the 1980s, I belive.

On the other hand, there was a previous USS Nicholas DD 449 which served in several Pacific WW2 battles.

I had the privilage of serving on DD 448 from 1957 to 1960.

John Clement
Master Chief Petty Officer
U.S. Navy, retired.

Laura said...

Hi John, thanks for commenting on my blog, can I ask how you found it? And did you notice the post before is about the Navy visit as well? It has links to my posts about their visit last year as well when I got to take a few of my boys to tour the USS Robert G. Bradley.

I did glance at the little plate under the flag, it was presented either in the Philippines or something to do with the Philippines. I didn't get to read the whole thing because I was on a tour and I was the last person so I had to hurry and catch up after taking the photo. I wish I had read it more carefully.

My dad retired from the Navy as a Senior Chief. Congratulations to you in having achieved the rank of Master Chief!

(Hi Meghann! Come back soon!!! Let's go listen to some live music!)

John Clement said...

The following received from John O'Neill who served on USS Nicholas DD 449 from 1943 to 1946.

The ensign you see in the photo is the one that was flown by USS Nicholas DD 449 thru the Philippine Campaign and was presented by me to then Cmdr Amerault, at the commissioning of USS Nicholas FFG 47 and it was flown from the yardarm the day she was commissioned.

Also presented was the DD 449 original commissioning plate, which is also on display aboard the FFG 47.

Claire Koenig said...

Laura, so very cool! Across the world, in your hometown of San Diego, I felt some Navy pride too. We toured the USS Midway yesterday, now a museum as you know, and learned so much about its history and the Navy too. The City has done a tremendous job honoring the Navy all along the waterfront there. Some beautiful and very touching monuments. I especially enjoyed touring the Midway, though. Back when Alameda was thriving, sailors stationed there would attend our church. I was able to go aboard the Enterprise during that time. I was also able to go aboard the Eisenhower in Norfolk when my cousin's husband was serving. (He was a Comamnder and was not XO yet - I believe XO came on his next assignment, on a smaller ship.) At any rate, when I saw the active duty ships, of course we could not see the more restricted areas. It was fascinating to me to see what people lived like, and made me so much more grateful for what our servicemen and women continue to do.

Laura said...

Wow, John, you're in touch with the man (also John!) who presented that flag? He must be almost about 90 years old, given the dates he served? I think they said the Nicholas was commissioned in 1984. That is pretty amazing. I don't think I saw the original commissioning plate.

My dad, also a John, retired as a Senior Chief Petty Officer. He was on a few ships but the one I remember most was the Kitty Hawk, a carrier.

The Navy's visit, this year and last, gave me a greater appreciation of my dad's work, especially seeing the inside of the ships. But also hearing from the men what all a Senior Chief has to have achieved (and the qualities he has to have had) to make it to that rank. So I've been very blessed by their visits. Not to mention their service here at our children's center!

Thanks for leaving comments, it's been very interesting "chatting" with you!