26 Jan 2006
I was born and raised in Amsterdam, New York, and enlisted in the Navy in May 1959.
After boot camp I went to Guided Missileman "A" and "C" schools at Dam Neck, Virginia.
While there, I met my future wife of 43 years (so far), who was a senior in high school in
Virginia Beach. I served in the Deck Gang and Missile Division in USS PROVIDENCE
(CLG-6) and then was a plank owner in USS ROBISON (DDG-12).
In 1962 I was selected for the NESEP Program, and attended North Carolina State
University, where I graduated in 1966 with Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Electrical
Engineering. Ruth Ann and I were married just before I started classes. Following
graduation, I went to OCS for officer training and while there was interviewed by Admiral
Rickover and selected for the nuclear program.
I opted for submarines and so after nuclear power school and prototype I went to Sub
School. To my good fortune, the Navy decided that even nukes needed to learn how to
drive real submarines, so many of the nukes in my sub school class went to diesel boats.
Mine was THORNBACK, where I reported in August 1968.
I see from his bio that Bill Wilson was aboard at the same time, as an IC Electrician. I wish
I could say I remember him, but although the name sounds familiar, I can't put a face to it.
Bill shared a couple of memories in his bio, and surely he remembers the story of
"One-turn Stewart" and the three or four stories about our escapades (yes, even the
O-gang) during a visit to SUBASE New London (probably sometime in late '69 or early
'70). I'll save the details for a future reunion. I have a lot more memories of THORNBACK
and her crew, all of them happy ones. I missed the turnover to the Turks, having been
transferred to DANIEL BOONE in February 1970 after I completed my sub quals. But Ruth
Ann was there, and was very impressed with the ceremony.
I went on to serve as Electrical Officer and DCA in DANIEL BOONE for about 2 years,
then as Weapons Officer in THOMAS A. EDISON for over 3 years. Following a two-year
tour at SUBPAC, I was XO in FINBACK from September 1978 to October 1980. I retired as
a Lieutenant Commander on 1 November 1980.
After my retirement, Ruth Ann and I stayed in Virginia Beach. I worked for Tracor Applied
Sciences for nine and a half years, doing mostly submarine sonar test and evaluation
support for NAVSEA. I went to work for EG&G in 1990, and have been there ever since. I
currently work as a contractor on the staff of the Antiterrorism Directorate at Commander
U.S. Fleet Forces Command (CINCLANTFLT for the old timers). Our Navy has seen a lot
of changes since the attack of 9-11-01, and I'm proud to say I've been on the cutting edge
of those changes. I received a Meritorious Public Service Medal in 2002 for my work in
Antiterrorism and Force Protection for CINCLANTFLT.
Ruth Ann and I have two children (a son and daughter), and three grandchildren (18, 6
and 22 months as of January 2006). If you find yourself in the Norfolk-Virginia Beach area,
give us a call. We're in the phone book.