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July 24, 2013

Dear Shipmates,


With time winding down, the 2013 AOM Reunion in Whidbey Island looks like it will be one of the best one in a long time. For more information, check the web site.



Fred Reid  


Back in March of this year, our senior AOM member, Fred Reid, MNCM (USN Ret.) began to confront his mortality and expressed the thought with his son Jim Reid, that, upon his death, he would like to have his casket draped with a U. S. flag that had flown over a Mine Warfare facility. Thus the wheels were put in motion to fulfill that desire.


Ron Swart, initiator of so many good things, obtained permission from the Navy Mine and Antisubmarine Warfare Command, RADM Bob Hennegan, to fly a casket-size flag over their HQ for Fred.  Jim Reid and Toby filled in the key background details for the Admiral.  Since it is next to impossible for the Navy to fund purchase of this flag, Ron suggested that we take funds from the AOM kitty (a precedent-setting move) or pass the hat.  A 5' x 9.5' casket flag runs just over $100.  The NMAWC staff has agreed to purchase the flag locally (SDGO) and then send it to Fred's address with a note saying when and where it was flown and hopefully, some photos.  They've assigned a QMCM to head the detail.  All in all, a great response was provided by them.  Meanwhile, we awaited a timely decision on the flag purchase from the AOM BoD and leadership which came through like clock-work.


Normally, the wheels of progress grind slowly but we were rewarded with a successful conclusion to this very worthwhile project. BZs to the NMAWC staff, Ron Swart and all who made this unprecedented project a reality. As a final note, AOM reunion attendees will have the opportunity to meet with our senior member, Freddie Reid and his son, Jim, at Whidbey.


This is a special prayer request for our shipmate, Len Siluk, MNCS (Ret.) is hospitalized and in need of prayerful support. I spoke with his son, Rick, who informed me that Len is in very serious condition. Like many of us who loved the opportunity we had to serve in the Navy, Len was quite expressive. Rick is his Dad's primary care support and drives him around. When they would pass the Navy Recruiting office, Len would ask his son to stop the car so "he could go in and re-up."  Len lost his wife last year and we all can understand what it is like to be ill and without our life's companion for support. Here is an opportunity to send an e-mail of support and/or a card of cheer. Rick will pass on any e-mail message to his Dad at < > Please show how much you care for the welfare of your fellow sailors and minemen. Mail can be sent to 3209 Prichard Place, Schertz, TX 78154-3904


mntc-a       MNTC-a


It's often said that "what's old is new again." This is never more true than in Mine Command. I recently received a challenge coin from MN1(SW) Rachel A. Chapman from Ft. Worth, TX. Above are the emblems of the new Mine Warfare Training Center. As you may be aware, the building at Point Loma is named for our esteemed colleague, Cecil Martin. The page illustrating the ceremony for the commissioning of Martin Hall can be found HERE


Rachel made the "cover" of The New Navy along with several shipmates. For attendees at the 2013 Reunion, be prepared to say "HI" to this member of the "New Navy."


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THE DASHPOT IS BACK!  Our new editor, MNC Don Healer has put the first edition of the DASHPOT under his editorship in the mail. Don expressed trepidation when asked to fill the shoes of Bill Fortner, previous editor. In this Summer 2013 edition is a tribute to Bill as well as a wealth of other interesting material. This 20-page quarterly will reflect the news that you submit. For that reason, it is important that you not only submit information to Don, but to do it on a timely basis.

Don writes: "I have setup an email account for DASHPOT Articles: -- please use this account for everything in the future.  If you send anything, be sure and get a reply.  I want to make sure the email address is working." 



Our official AOM Webmaster, Phil DeChene, writes the following:
"On August 1st 2013, Derick Hartshorn will assume the duties of the AOM WebMaster. Fred Dane and Hal Elston established the AOM Web Site and I have had the honor and enjoyment of being the Webmaster since 2003. Derick is an experienced Webmaster so the site is in good hands. Thank you for your cooperation theses last ten years and I hope to see you at Whidbey."
 As a personal response, I look forward to this new challenge. While Mineman Memories has been a lot of fun to work with, the official AOM web site will be a real challenge. Phil has put his heart and soul into for the past decade. I would like to sincerely thank Phil for putting his trust in me. --Derick