January 2009 Newsletter
From the President’s CornerShipmates,
We hope that this finds everyone well and hope everyone has survived, or recovered, from the 2008 Baton Rouge reunion, most graciously hosted by Oscar Boudreaux and his wife Janet. In this newsletter we summarize the most recent reunion held in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, call your attention to the events and the activities we are planning for the 2010 reunion in Salt Lake City, Utah, and bring you up to date with other Association happenings.
Just a quick update for those that did not attend the 2008 reunion, held in Baton Rouge, Louisiana from the 29th of May thru the 1st of June. The opening night on Thursday included a crawfish boil, Cajun dancing, and of course, the chance to reunite with old friends. Friday included a day trip to New Orleans to see the WWII Museum and a visit to the famous French Quarter. On Saturday, our memorial service was held aboard the USS Kidd DD 661, a Fletcher class Tin Can. This was very memorable, as most of the shipmates did not expect the whole ship to be opened up for sight-seeing. I never expected to ever be able to go down into a fire room again, but us BT’s did get to. Saturday night was our banquet with a guest speaker, entertainment, and of course the raffle. For those staying thru Sunday, a trip to the famous Nottaway Plantation finished off the reunion in style. I would like to give a great big Thank You to Oscar Boudreaux and his wife Janet for hosting such a great event.
As we begin a new year, we would like to briefly let you know what we have tentatively planned for the 2010 Reunion here in Salt Lake City, UT. My wife Marcia and I, along with Steve Petryk and his wife Mary Lou (the 2006 reunion hosts in Dearborn MI) spent a couple of days in the Salt Lake City area scoping out things to do. We have tentatively set the reunion dates for Thursday, Sept. 30th, thru Sunday, Oct. 4th, 2010 with early arrivals coming in on the 28th of Sept., and those who so desire, staying thru Oct. 5th. We are actively searching out hotels in the downtown area, close to shopping and other sources of entertainment. A must do, will be the Heber Valley Railroad thru the mountains east of Salt Lake to see the fall colors, plus a side trip to Park City, and the Olympic Village, home of the 2002 Winter Olympics. Also, on Thursday night, Olie and his side kick Frankie will be playing some Polkas, etc, so dancing shoes might be in order.
In closing, we hope everyone had a great Holiday Season, and remember to look for another newsletter later this year when we have some firm commitments and plans. If anyone has any suggestions or ways to improve the reunion, please feel free to contact me or one of the other officers.
Paul L. Steele President, JWT Association
Association NewsHere are the new officers elected for the term 2008 – 2010 term of the USS John W. Thomason Association. They are as follows:
|Howard Barrett||1st Vice President|
Also, we have added a second person on the Treasurer’s account. Robert D’orsi has been added, and both he and Jim Kulp are bonded.
Association DonationsOnce again, we would like to remind everyone about the $15.00 per year Association dues. These dues help keep the Association financially sound, defray the costs of printing/mailing newsletters, and keep the costs of upcoming reunions down. We ask that, if possible, everyone try to make a $15.00 minimum annual donation to the Association. The donation should be sent care of Jim Kulp at 131 River Bend Park, Lancaster, PA 17602. Make checks payable to the USS John W. Thomason Association.
"Lost Shipmates"We would like everyone to make a special effort to locate any lost shipmates, and to encourage those who are not lost to attend the next reunion. There were several "first timers" at the Baton Rouge reunion, and we would like to see a whole lot more, so let's shake the trees! You can find a list of "lost shipmates" on our web site.
Reuniting with a shipmate after 40 yearsOn October 26/28, several USS John W. Thomason shipmates traveled to Manchester, Ohio to pay a visit to Marvin Glenn Humphrey. Glenn was an FTG1 and the leading fire control technician onboard the JWT from 1965 to 1968. None of the shipmates had seen Glenn in over 40 years! A wonderful time was had by all while looking at photographs, renewing old friendships and swapping sea stories. Glenn and his wife Deanna were gracious hosts and they made everyone feel right at home. Several local newspaper reporters were on hand to record the event. Look on our web site for more information and photos.
The shipmates who participated in the event included John Cutrona, Gene Prather, George "Bo" Mevitz, Joe Kingsbury, Ray Willoughby, Steve Petryk, Jim Kulp, Wayne Covert and Wayne's son Troy. It was also the first time in 40 years that any of the shipmates had seen Wayne. Glenn and Wayne both are interested in attending the 2010 reunion and seeing all of the JWT shipmates. Everyone is looking forward to seeing them and their spouses in Salt Lake City.
Visit us on the WebMay 1, of 2008 our web site moved to a new address. We are now at http://dd760.org
Shipmate Bob Soukup (ETN2) 1967 – 70 is acting as webmaster. The old address was still active as of this writing but may get cut off at any time. On the site you will find photos from the 2008 reunion and earlier reunions, copies of cruise books, muster lists from each year that the JWT was in commission, info about the ship, guest books that you can contribute to, and more. The latest 2010 reunion info will be posted as it becomes available.