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May 23, 2015

Dear Shipmates,


With a little over four months to go, you need to begin planning for the 2015 Reunion in Reno, Nevada. Time's a wastin' !



The latest dates and plans are posted on the web page. The menu has been established, the room rates are set and the schedule is cast in stone.

 BE THERE! Make your reservations NOW.



Death, in the form of lymphoma, a deadly form of cancer, has overtaken one of our compatriots. CWO Ron DuBois passed away May 21, 2015, at his home in Fairmont, Minnesota. His close friend, Hawk Lindley, MNCS, NSI, USN(ret) passed on this sad news.



Ronald Edward DuBois  August 16, 1950 - May 21, 2015



Graveside services for Ronald DuBois, 64, of Fairmont, MN, will be 12:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 26, 2015, at the Ft. Snelling National Cemetery in Minneapolis with full military honors following the service. Ronald passed away Thursday morning, May 21, 2015, at his home in Fairmont. The Lakeview Funeral Home and Cremation Service of Fairmont is assisting the family with arrangements.

Ronald Edward DuBois was born on August 16, 1950, in St. Paul, MN, the son of Albert and Susan (Kenowski) DuBois. He attended school in St. Paul and graduated from St. Agnus High School. Following his graduation, Ron began attending college and later enlisted with the United States Navy where he served his country during the Vietnam War, retiring after 23 years of service. During his time in the Navy, Ronald was stationed in Vietnam, Scotland, Italy, Crete, and Charleston, SC. On June 18, 2008, Ronald was united in marriage to Kristy Paul (nee Gustafson) in St. Paul, MN. Together the couple made their home in Vadnais Heights, MN, prior to moving to Fairmont, MN, in 2009. Ron retired in August 2013. Ron was a classic car's guy and loved automobiles. His favorites were the iconic cars of the 1950's, 60's, and early 70's.

Left to cherish his memory is his wife, Kristy DuBois of Fairmont, MN; children, Melanie Fairchild and her husband, Derek and their children, Peyton and Kylie and Ryan DuBois and Holly Woodring and their children, Dane, Coraline, Jack and Max; brother, Michael DuBois and a sister, Diana Chute; father-in-law, Herb Gustafson; brother-in-law, Aric Gustafson; two sisters-in-law, Karen and Kathy; as well as many other extended family and friends.

Ronald was preceded in death by parents, Albert and Susan DuBois and his mother-in-law, Rose Gustafson.


Please take the opportunity to read and sign the Guest Book.


Jorgen Lorenzen Celebrates 70th Anniversary of VE day


VE Day in the USA is not as significant as it is in the countries of Europe that were occupied for over five years by the Nazis. Our Honorary AOM member, Jorgen Strange Lorenzen CDR, RDN (ret), has had the opportunity to celebrate the 70th Anniversary of this momentous event. We salute this brave patriot who was active in the Danish Resistance and was a true hero.



Those of us who have been on board for any length of time are familiar, in some way, with Jorgen Strange Lorenzen (CDR, RDN, retired). A graduate of the NSMWF Yorktown, class of 1952, Jorgen was a member of the Royal Danish Navy and a participant in the Danish resistance movement during WWII. An honorary member of AOM, Jorgen has been closely associated with our association as well as many of our members. A 2010 AOM Reunion attendee, he continues to represent those who gave their lives in the defense of Denmark. Active in many memorials to the brave men who live now on the inscriptions of military memorials, Jorgen is always present whenever Denmark honors those who fought against the terror of Nazi aggression.

 Jorgen has long been represented on our AOM pages. His colorful biography has been captured on our web site. Rarely does the US Navy honor a foreign national as we do CDR Jorgen Lorenzen. As he has done for his country, very few Americans have done as much for theirs.

 We are fortunate that he has remembered his American shipmates as he has. At the age of 86, Jorgen is a renaissance man, one who stands out among his peers, during a period of life-changing events. Those who have been active in the Mine Force during the past several decades may have had the privilege of meeting this illustrious individual and the opportunity to know this remarkable man. To meet Jorgen Lorenzen is to have fulfilled one more event on one's "bucket list."


He was recently interviewed by the Danish media on the 70th Anniversary VE Day. While the dialogue is in Danish, here's an opportunity to see Jorgen relate his experience with the Danish Resistance.




We have been trying to keep all Minemen informed about the progress of former Mineman, Cole Chapman. The loss of both of his legs in a motorcycle accident in February has really placed the family, including two absolutely beautiful daughters, in a tough position. New housing was required in order to provide for the needed handicap-access residence. Wife and Texas native, Rachel Butler Chapman, MNC, attached to the base in San Diego, has a long commute from Murietta, CA, the site of their current housing. Their bills continue to pile up and the needs mount. Please consider helping this family. Anything that you can provide is a measure of your love and a token of your support for this wonderful family. 

  The GoFundMe page has been successful, but only to a degree. About a quarter of their financial needs have so far been met. As Minemen and fellow sailors, we can do a lot better than we have. It doesn't matter -- $20 or $2,000 -- every bit goes a long way. Check out their Facebook pages to see the remarkable progress Cole is making: Visit Cole's Facebook page and Rachel's Facebook page.



The Mine Warfare Association (MINWARA) is a not-for-profit organization that is devoted to education and the raising of awareness concerning mines and mine warfare. The purpose is to strengthen the national security of the United States and to assist in the attainment of international security and humanitarian objectives of the United States as set forth by the President of the United States.   



The Mine Warfare Association has the following objectives:  

    • To provide education and training and to increase awareness about the the military arts of mine warfare and the impacts of mines during and after hostilities;
    • To enhance communication among individuals and organizations who are concerned about all aspects of mine warfare - mining and mine design, mine countermeasures and counter-mine activity, De-mining and remediation of areas contaminated by mines, unexploded ordnance, or hazardous chemical, biological, and radiological materials.
Their members include many Flag and General Officers, senior civilians from government and industry, officers of all rank and enlisted of all rank who have or are still serving in mine warfare jobs. AOM members and anyone else interested in Mine Warfare are most welcome to join.  

The Naval Minewarfare Association (NMA) was founded on December 5, 1982, in San Antonio, Texas, during the Pearl Harbor Survivors Association convention. Sixty-six sailors from 14 of the 24 minecraft at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, held their own mini-reunion for the purpose of establishing a minecraft organization that would hold its own reunions and stay in touch through a "newsletter." Today, their membership is around 548 and consists of those men who served, or now serve, on one or more of the more than 700 ships and stations relating to mine warfare during the time frame of World War II and up to the present.  

Most, if not all of the MINWARA leadership are friends, former bosses and colleagues of mine. You can think of the MINWARA as an organization that is primarily interested in promoting and supporting the programmatic, policy and political aspects of mine warfare. Yes, there are many Flag and General officers in the membership along with officers and civilians who spent their careers supporting and serving in mine warfare billets. They sponsor a Spring and Winter conference where presentations are made to keep the membership appraised of what is going on in the fleet, the program offices and OPNAV. The Office of Naval Research and Naval Intelligence also provide briefs from their work in MW. The Spring conference is usually held at the Naval Post Graduate School in Monterey, CA and the Fall conference is somewhere on the East Coast like DC or Panama City. 

The Naval Minewarfare Association is a different group of retired MCM Sailors and officers. Their website contains a wealth of information, useful and interesting to all who have any interest in Mine Warfare. They publish an excellent semi-annual newsletter called 'The Silent Defenders'. While several AOM members belong to NMA, their interest is primarily WWII, Korea and VietNam-era mine warfare.

(courtesy of Ron Swart)




We didn't have much luck in identifying Don Fanelli as the last mystery mineman. Ross Maddocks seems to have been the only one to identify this handsome, young MN3.



Don and I were in 'A' School in Yorktown together and have had the opportunity to recall old times with one another at recent AOM Reunions.


Better luck on the next MYSTERY MINEMAN. 




I had to really dig to come up with this mystery mineman. I even had to resort to a disguise to make it a little more challenging. WHO IS HE?

 (I want to thank Ed Hutsell for this photo)




If you know the identity of this mystery mineman, write me back.