Spring 2006
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Spring -2006

Sixty-three members of the association held their 10th reunion at the Handlery Resort & Hotel, San Diego, CA from 16-20 February 2006. Shipmates (41) representing all ships and years attended.  The group was graciously hosted for a day-tour aboard the current JPJ, DDG53, on Saturday at 32nd St. Naval Station.  The group also visited the SAN DIEGO MARITIME MUSEUM featuring a Russian 1970’s FOXTROT submarine (B-39); the 1863 “Star of India” full-rigged sailing ship; “HMS Surprise” replica of a Royal Navy 18th century frigate from the movie “MASTER & COMMANDER”; and 4 other historic ships. An all-day city tour was also part of the package.

Our long-serving Assoc. President, Captain A.R. Olsen Jr, USN (Ret), DD932 CO, retired and turned the helm over to our new President, Doug Weiser, DDG32, and VP Bob Hildebrand, DDG32. Carry-over association officers are Secy. Pete Maytham and Treas. John McKechnie.

The highlight of the reunion was our banquet speaker, CDR James Housinger, CO DDG53, bringing us up-to-date on today’s Navy and the 7 “Command Philosophy” elements for DDG-53:

"This philosophy is our guiding principle in everything we do.  We will use it to steer our actions and keep us on track."

COMBAT READINESS.  Our primary mission is combat readiness.  We will constantly prepare ourselves and our ship to engage any enemy with decisive force and use that force when and where it is needed.  Every member of the team, no matter what job or what role, contributes to combat readiness every day.
TRAINING
.  We will train with combat readiness as our end state. Knowledgeable and committed people are our best innovators.  Innovation gives us efficiency.  Safety is efficiency.
SAFETY.  Safety in our operations and training are paramount.  We will proactively design risk management into everything we do—to do less does not serve our combat readiness.
CIVILITY
.  Every person aboard USS JOHN PAUL JONES will treat other people with dignity and respect at all times—this is a hallmark of our existence and our reputation.  The true warrior recognizes the difference between civility and ferocity in combat.  Civility does not preclude forceful leadership.
LEADERSHIP
.  Our leaders train, teach, direct, evaluate, guide, and mentor the people who will lead our Navy deep into the 21st century.  Example is the finest expression of leadership.
COURAGE
.  Moral and physical courage wins wars.   Our courage to do what is right—to make our decisions with selfless integrity—forms the basis of ourselves and our team.  We do what is right, even when no one is looking.
PERSONAL BALANCE
.  We will ensure our personal mental and physical fitness through family activities, breadth of outside interests, education, and physical training.

The spirit of John Paul Jones is alive in this ship.  We are ready to go in harm’s way to support and defend the Constitution of the United States of America.  We will kill the enemy and will not idly absorb the first volley.  Everyday, we serve our country, its citizens, and each other.

Banquet guests from the ship included XO LCDR Kristen Stengel, Command Master Chief Charlie Ratliff, Bull Ensign ENS Figel, SC, and LTJG Spencer our tour coordinator.

Next reunion – Newport, RI, in November 2007.

CO’s Column
USS JOHN PAUL JONES (DDG-53)

April 18, 2006

Greetings to all fellow JOHN PAUL JONES Sailors,

Those of us who attended the reunion banquet had a great time meeting with many of you.   Suzanne and I hope to see everyone again either while still here or at the next reunion.  As of this writing, we are 50% through our Selected Restricted Availability (SRA) period and JPJ Sailors are hard at work completing much-needed repairs and maintenance.  Some of the highlights from the past couple of months:

  1. We were underway the week of Presidents’ Day running numerous integrated drills conducted by our Engineering Training Team, Combat Systems Training Team, Medical Training Team, Seamanship/Navigation Training Team, and Damage Control Training Team.
  2. During the last week of the month, moving into March, the week looked much like the previous week, but with the added dimension of having 32 members of the Afloat Training Group, Pacific aboard to assess our ability to train as well as the proficiency of our watch standers under many different conditions at all hours of the day and night.  You’ll be happy to know, your Sailors did a superb job in executing a very challenging schedule.  The Integrated Training Team performed at an extraordinarily high level of integration, exceeding our own expectations.  We turned the assessment into a certification in 2 of the 11 areas and we’re given the green light to self-assess 5 of the other areas (including Damage Control…JPJ was the first ship to ever do this under the current system).
  3. Throughout the past couple of months, many of our Sailors received training from our Force Protection Training Team in non-lethal weapons tactics and use.  This included, for over a hundred of them, being sprayed in the face with pepper spray then having to fight off an attacker.  DON’T ATTEMPT THIS AT HOME!  They can all tell you it was not a pleasant experience.  But our people are better trained to do their jobs now under very adverse conditions.
  4. In preparation for the SRA, we brought a berthing barge alongside while pierside Naval Base, San Diego.  All mattresses, linens, and personal items normally kept in the ship’s berthing compartments were moved to the barge.  This will enable us to get in and really clean and preserve the living spaces to improve quality of life for everyone when we come out of the shipyard.  We also removed most of the fuel from the ship by pumping it to a fueling barge; a long and tedious process for the Engineers that spanned 4 days.
  5. The SRA officially started on 15 March.  We kicked it off with a “deadstick move” to Continental Maritime Shipyard.  It took about 2 hours to move from Pier 3 to the shipyard pier, less than 2 miles away.
  6. You wouldn’t recognize the ship today.  There are protective wood and plastic coatings on all of the decks.  Bundles of cables and plastic piping have been strung throughout the ship, and many of the topside spaces are covered in scaffolding and plastic shrink-wrap.  The important thing is that critical installations and repairs are taking place so we can be ready to continue our training cycle at the end of May.
  7. All through the SRA, JPJ Sailors have been attending schools and training to improve their level of knowledge and keep their skills sharp.

As you can see, the operational tempo and the work ethic of JOHN PAUL JONES remains…keeping our marvelous connection with our namesake’s legacy intact.

Sincerely and Very Respectfully,
Jim Housinger
Commanding Officer

USS JOHN PAUL JONES (DDG 53)

50th Anniversary JPJ (DD-932)

It was 50 years ago, on April 5, 1956, that the JPJ (DD-932) was placed in commission in Boston at the Charlestown Naval Shipyard. Some comments/reminiscences from plankowners/shipmates:

Frank McDevitt – “Had it not been for a great commissioning crew, wardroom, and parties, Pat and I would never had made it into submarines. Thanks to the best of the best!”
Jerry Neeland –
“I couldn't let the day pass without remembering!  I had come off an ammunition ship (AE-17) and was sure that the 932 was heaven! I know that some of us were on pre-commissioning duty in Newport, and the rest were part of the nucleus crew in Bath, but we were all a proud bunch, and I want to thank all of you for making today such a fond anniversary.”
John McKechnie
– “COMMISSIONING CREW – JPJ (DD-932):
Thanks shipmates for having started the 932 on its successful journey ….. you kept the proud name of JOHN PAUL JONES alive.
I always envied you who had the opportunity to place a ship in COMMISSION. You did a great job.”

Thanks to the technical skills, efforts and generosity of Don Riggs, Jr., son of the late plankowner, YNC Don Riggs, Sr., and with the assistance of a couple other plankowners, the “long-lost” audio tape-recording of that momentous occasion in April ’56 has been found, re-mastered and transferred by Don to a CD.

Copies of the CD, professionally packaged in a “jewel-case” with photos and other information about the commissioning will be available in the near future (you will be informed) at a cost of $10.00 ea., incl. S/H.

As a gesture of his gratitude on becoming an “adopted” member of JPJ (DD-932), thanks to his dad, Don is generously giving copies of the CD to DD-932 plankowners.

Others wishing a copy of the CD may place advance orders (with check or money order, please) through our Secretary:

Peter Maytham
105 Joshua Rd.

Smithfield, VA 23430

Farewell ………
It is with great sadness and sorrow that we say “farewell” to Dottie Olsen, shipmate Al Olsen’s beloved wife of 57 years, who died last Dec. 23rd in  falls Church, Virginia, leaving behind her husband, 6 children and 9 grandchildren. We shall all miss her, friendliness, charm and wit that were her “trademark” at reunions and other JPJ events.

Joe Good - Taken at an all-too-early time from his family, friends and shipmates, Joe died peacefully at home in Virginia Beach, Friday, Feb. 24, 2006, shortly after a recurrence of his fight against cancer, leaving his wife, Nancy, a sister, two sons and two grandsons. Several fellow DD-932 shipmates attended his funeral March 2nd: Joe’s former CO, Walt Malone; Dick Wagar; Jack Dambaugh; Benno Gerson; Bill Gallagher; Pete Maytham.  Joe will always be remembered for his devotion to family, church, community, and shipmates.
     
It was only a few months earlier that Joe, together with Walt Malone, hosted a “mini-reunion” in Virginia Beach 28-29 Oct. 2005 to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the final cruise of DD-932 before she was decommissioned and converted to DDG-32. In addition to Walt, Joe and their wives, former XO Frank Rentz, Benno Gerson, Tom Sollars, Jack Dambaugh, Dick Wagar and their wives took part, including a ride on Chesapeake Bay in Joe’s new boat.

Seabag
  "CARE PACKAGES" for our troops:
Send sweets, pop-tarts, candy, cookies, books, magazines (sports, entertainment, business); wool socks, too, because it can get very cold there. Also, writing materials (pens and stationery). The Post Office is giving free shipping supplies for CARE packages to military members (5 large boxes, 5 small boxes, tape, labels, customs forms and other stuff).It's all free and you can reorder when you run low. Call

1-800-610-8734
, hit 1 for English, then 3 for operator, and ask to receive the free CARE kit for sending packages to a military member. LET THEM KNOW WE’RE THINKING OF THEM.

DD-214s now online -
The National Personnel Records Center (NPRC) has provided the following website for veterans to gain access to their DD-214s online:  http://vetrecs.archives.gov/
This may be particularly helpful when a veteran needs a copy of his DD-214 for employment purposes.  NPRC is working to make it easier for veterans with computers and Internet access to obtain copies of documents from their military files.  Military veterans and the next of kin of deceased former military members may now use the new online military personnel records system to request documents.

VA Prescription Fraud Alert
It has been reported that veterans are receiving calls from a company identifying itself as the "Patient Care Group." This company is claiming that the veteran's prescriptions are now being dispensed through them and if they wanted to continue to receive their meds, they would need to provide a credit card number. Veterans are to be advised that the VA has not changed the process of receiving and dispensing prescriptions. Veterans are also advised to never give out their personal information including social security numbers and credit card numbers to any organization without first verifying their legitimacy.

TRICARE Third Tier Rx
DoD has announced the start of the uniform formulary program, placing three medications on the third tier (more expensive) “non-formulary” category. Starting 17 July, the following medications will require a $22 co-payment:
-  Nexium for stomach problems and ulcers,
-  Teveten and Teveten HCT for high blood pressure.

Depending on where the prescription is filled, beneficiaries will pay $22 for a 30-day supply of these medications from a TRICARE Retail Pharmacy (TRRx) or a 90-day supply from the TRICARE Mail-Order Pharmacy (TMOP). In non-network retail pharmacies, the co-payment will be $22 or 20% of the cost, whichever is higher.

SWABBY  and SWABBY II
Following received from:

Jack Haberstroh
, Ph.D. (TCS # 30243)
15625 Avenida Alcachofa, # H
San Diego, CA 92128
USNR, 1944-1946, S 1/C
USS Gregory (DD 802)

“For the past five years, I’ve been compiling a trilogy of books filled with hundreds of personal experiences of World War II enlisted sailors.
  
The purpose of the books is to salute the contributions, valor and sacrifices made by the WW II sailor. He's strangely missing from most naval histories of that war. It is also my hope to preserve these priceless memories for future generations.
  
I'm happy to report that the first two books, SWABBY and SWABBY II, have been published by Heritage Books in Westminster, MD. I'm now hard at work on the third and last volume of the trilogy: SWABBY III.
  
I'd like to invite your WW II enlisted membership to send me a memory or two from their days in the Navy. The experiences may be good or bad, funny or tragic.  Along with their “memories”, I'd love to use a couple photos from each contributor, if possible. I'll make copies of any photos and mail originals back immediately.
  
Thank you so very much for your assistance. I'll look forward to hearing from some of your members.”

VOTE JPJ REUNION – 20007 -
NEWPORT Reunion committee chairman  is requesting your VOTE for venue/time.

Best two options in Newport, RI:
1.
BEST WESTERN
MAINSTAY INN -
    $61/nite weekend; $49/nite mid-week; free, lge. hospitality suite; town: 1 mile

2.
NEWPORT HARBOR INN –
   
$119/nite weekend; $99/nite mid-week; small hospitality room,
    and we have to rent the two rooms on either side at the going rate; downtown, right on the docks.
Send your VOTE to Ed Ettinger:

174 Cedar Rd.
Mystic, CT 06355
(860) 572-0899

ejettinger@snet.net 

ABEST WESTERN   _______
B.  NEWPORT HARBOR INN
______
C.  MID-WK______ OR WK-END____

D.  1st  WK NOV____, 2nd WK NOV____


USS John Paul Jones (DDG-53)

USS John Paul Jones (DDG-53)

CDR Jim Housinger, CO DDG-53, and wife Suzanne

LCDR’s Stengel (she’s the XO)

JPJ Assn. Officers (L-R: McKechnie, Maytham, VP Hildebrand, Pres. Weiser, past-Pres. Olsen)

Walt Szczypinski “holding court” with ENS Figel,
Clint Kreitner

Susie Davis talking with Bill and Pont Hall

Al Lundgruns and Nick Colella

Doug Weiser with Chuck and Nancy

L-R:  George Grove, Tom McNamara, LCDR Stengel – XO, Chuck Davis

Jim and Suzie Effland

Jerry Neeland telling Pete Maytham “a good one”

Our ladies relax in the Hospitality Suite

Our shipmates relax in the Hospitality Suite

Al Lundgrun, Harvey Diamond enjoy poolside