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8/23/17

Annapolis Class Luncheon






USNA Class of 1954

 Class Luncheon

Tuesday, 12 September

1130 to 1300

Loew's Hotel BAROAK Taproom

Annapolis
Classmates, their families, and Widows invited

Both  valet and "self park" tickets can be validated

Questions

Bill Greenlaw




 

8/18/17

Death of a Classmate - William Harry Schulden - 15th Co.



Commander William Harry Schulden USNR (Ret) died peacefully on 26 June 2017 due to heart failure.  He was 87 years old. 

 A native of New York, NY, “Dutch” graduated from Haaren High School in 1947 and enlisted in the Navy after graduation.  He was selected and assigned to the Naval Academy Preparatory School, successfully passed the highly competitive examination, and was appointed to the Naval Academy by the Secretary of the Navy.  Dutch was a member of the 15th Company and lived in the Second Wing of Bancroft Hall. On graduation, he was assigned to the Navy Supply Corps with instruction at the Navy Supply School in Athens, Georgia.   Dutch’s first duty assignment was aboard the USS Ashland (LSD-1), followed by duty on the USS Greenwood (DE-679).  In 1956 he received orders for duty back at the Naval Academy as an instructor in the Department of Marine Engineering.  In 1958 Dutch resigned his active duty commission and became a permanent civilian member of the faculty as a professor in the Department of Marine Engineering.  He continued to serve in the U.S. Navy Reserve, attaining the rank of Commander.  He remained a professor at the Academy for a total of 34 years; retiring in 1990.  A proud and dedicated professor, Dutch loved his work teaching midshipmen and helping to train the next generation of naval officers.  After retirement, Dutch continued to serve as a tutor for midshipmen and for other students in the community.  His ready smile and helping hand were well known to all.

Dutch was predeceased earlier in 2017 by his devoted wife of 49 years, Dolores (Dee) Schulden, originally of Pittston, PA.  He is survived by his five children: Louise, William, Jim, Dianne, and Jeff; seven grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.  Friends described him as warm, friendly, engaging, and generous.  During his life, he was an avid racquetball and softball player, adored professor and tutor, and lover of classic old movies.  In later years, his favorite pastime was playing bridge, with friends and with his best partner, his wife Dee.

He will be remembered as a loving husband, devoted father, caring grandparent, and proud Naval Academy alumnus and professor.  His spirit, his love, and his warmth will be missed by all those whose lives he touched.  

An inurnment memorial service will be held for Dutch at the Naval Academy columbarium on Friday, September 29th at 11am.  All are welcome.  


8/1/17

HNLMS Abraham Crijnssen -Read this to appreciate our Poet's August poem





HNLMS Abraham Crijnssen

Originally planning to escape to Australia with three other warships, the then-stranded minesweeper had to make the voyage alone and unprotected. The slow-moving vessel could only get up to about 15 knots and had very few guns, boasting only a single 3-inch gun and two Oerlikon 20 mm canons making it a sitting duck for the Japanese bombers that circled above.
Knowing their only chance of survival was to make it to the Allies Down Under, the Crijnssen's 45 crew members frantically brainstormed ways to make the retreat undetected. The winning idea? Turn the ship into an island.

You can almost hear crazy-idea guy anticipating his shipmates' reluctance: Now guys, just hear me out.  But lucky for him, the Abraham Crijnessen was strapped for time, resources and alternative means of escape, automatically making the island idea the best idea. Now it was time to put the plan into action.
The crew went ashore to nearby islands and cut down as many trees as they could lug back onto the deck. Then the timber was arranged to look like a jungle canopy, covering as much square footage as possible. Any leftover parts of the ship were painted to look like rocks and cliff faces. These guys weren't messing around...they were trying to save their butts.
Now, a camouflaged ship that is in deep trouble is better than a completely exposed ship. But there was still the problem of the Japanese noticing a mysterious moving island and wondering what would happen if they shot at it. Because of this, the crew figured the best means of convincing the Axis powers that they were an island was to truly be an island: by not moving at all during daylight hours.
While the sun was up they would anchor the ship near other islands, then cover as much ocean as they could once night fell praying the Japanese wouldn't notice a disappearing and reappearing island amongst the nearly 18,000 existing islands in Indonesia.  And, as luck would have it, they didn't.

The Crijnssen managed to go undetected by Japanese planes and avoid the destroyer that sank the other Dutch warships, surviving the eight-day journey to Australia and reuniting with Allied forces.
As we said, sometimes in life, the guy with the so-crazy-it-just-might-work idea hits one out of the park and saves the day. That is what happened in 1942 aboard the HNLMS Abraham Crijnssen. Ingenuity was the mother of invention.

Abraham Crijnssen camouflaged during her escape from Java

AN ISLAND MASQUERADER - Dick Raymond's August Poem

                          AN ISLAND MASQUERADER *
                                 or. Now Don't That Beat the Dutch?


"As we said, sometimes in life, the guy with the so-crazy-it-just-might-work idea  hits one out of the park and saves the day. That is what  happened in 1942 aboard the HNLMS Abraham Crijnssen. Ingenuity was the mother of invention."
                                                          – Cherry Hickson, "A Historic Footnote"

                             In 'Forty-two the Meatball swept the seas--
                        All-conquering, the potent Japanese
                        Wiped out the brave but feeble ABDA fleet,
                        Fought to the end, went down to black defeat.
                        The Java Sea was littered with their wrecks,
                        Few Dutchmen had survived to walk the decks--
                        How could a lone minesweeper dodge their fate?
                        How sneak to freedom, through the Sunda Strait?
                        Their ship was lightly armed, one three-inch gun,
                        And speed of fifteen knots—too slow to run.
                        The Crijnssen's doughty skipper polled his crew,
                        Forty-five sailors, salt-tough, through and through--
                       
                        Any ideas, how we might escape?
                        One bold tar answered—we might change her shape,
                        Covered with foliage, moored close to shore,
                        They'd think we were an island, hardly more.
                        Done! Cried the captain, Bos'n, man the boats,
                        Cut down those trees, or anything that floats,
                        Bring 'em aboard, we'll rig from stem to stern,
                        Among these islands, this should serve our turn!
                        And so for days they labored, dark to dawn,
                        Until the ship resembled a green lawn,
                        And enemy flotillas passed them by,
                        They even fooled patrol-planes in the sky!
                        Slowly, in black of night, they stole along,
                        Hearts in their mouths, but ah! their faith was strong,
                        And skillful hands directed the green ghost
                        Until at last they reached Australia's coast.
                       
                        The Aussies goggled--heartily they laughed
                        To see arrive this weird, fantastic craft,
                        But soon enough accepted to their flag—
                        The Hollanders had slipped out of the bag.
                        That war's long past, a many years have flown
                        Since the brave Dutchmen made it on their own,
                        But still the tale is told, how, decked with trees,
                        Abraham Crijnssen skunked the Japanese!
                        7-21-17

* In any major war, with its near-universal death and devastation there is sure to be more than one tale of miraculous escape and survival. For those who doubt the truth of it, here's a photograph of the little minesweeper, in her camouflage. And if there's any kind of lesson or moral in this, it must be, in Churchill's ringing phrase, NEVER GIVE UP!  

7/23/17

Services for a Class Widow - Mrs. Sylvia Twitchell Healy

 There will be a Service of Committal at the Columbarium on Monday, 24 July 2017 at 1130 for Mrs. Sylvia Twitchell Healy (DOB: 07 July 1941, DOD: 12 June 2017).  Mrs. Healy was the widow of Navy CAPT James Vincent Healy, Class of 1954.  He passed away in June 2014.  There will be a Reception at the Naval Academy Club.



Death of a Classmate - William H Schuden 15th Co.

I Received the following Email From Jeff Schulden:



Hi Will,


    I wanted to let you and the Class of '54 community know that my father, William H. Schulden (Dutch), passed away peacefully at the end of June.  

    Our family is planning for a service at the USNA columbarium for the end of September.  Details are TBD, but I will forward them once finalized.  

       Please feel free to forward my contact info if anyone would want additional details:  jdschulden@hotmail.com or 202-368-9874.

       Best regards,
       Jeff 

7/12/17

Death of a Class Wife - Carol Myers - 9th Co.



I received the following from Mike Myers:

Will —

This is to let you know that my wife, Carol, passed away this morning.  This is for information and you might want to put notification in the newsletter and/or shipmate.  The lady was the light of my life and the loss is devastating.

Cheerily —

Mike

7/4/17

F​OR​​ THE FOURTH - Dick Raymond's Fourth of July Poem


         
​                                   ​

                                       FOR THE FOURTH

                                                    A Thanksgiving
                                 There never was a country
                                    More beautiful and strong,
                                    More filled with Heaven's blessings,
                                    More worthy of my song,
                                    More rich with varied peoples
                                    Who came to seek free air,
                                    Who dared the direst dangers
                                    Then thanked their God in prayer.

                                    There never was a banner
                                    More bright with crimson bands,
                                    More white with sacred Honor,
                                    Who called to ancient lands,
                                    "Let all who cherish Freedom
                                    Repair to Western soil--
                                    Here all ye strive and long for
                                    Are paid with honest toil."

                                    The stars that soar above us
                                    Bespeak our hope and goal,
                                    The penance for our errors,
                                    The cleansing of our soul,
                                    So fit to fly for Freedom,
                                    Or never Man shall be
                                    More ready for the future,
                                    To use our Liberty!
                                                    5-18-17














7/3/17

Class Luncheon




 Class Luncheon

Tuesday,
11 July

1130 to 1300

Loew's Hotel BAROAK Taproom

Annapolis


Classmates and families, and Widows
​ are invited












6/29/17

Death of a Classmate - Steve L. RAMOS - 14th Co.



I received the following from Bob Sheehan:



Will,
    I talked this morning to Steve's daughter Laura who informs me the Steve passed away last Saturday.  Sorry to have to report this; I have her permission to do so.
    She is acting on her families' and Steve's wishes to have burial in the Columbarium USNA toward the end of September.  Details TBD, but will inform you when I hear anything.
Best regards,
Bob