9/6/20

Death of a Classmate - Harold Lawrence Young - 8th Co.




Harold Lawrence Young, "Ted," retired Rear Admiral US Navy, died Tuesday, September 1, 2020 in Saco, Maine, at the age of 91.
Born in Plymouth, Massachusetts on July 19, 1929, to Margaret (White) and Ralph Young, Ted became enamored with the Navy as a teenager, deciding it would be his career. He was in his third and final year at Massachusetts Maritime Academy, when he received the news that he had been accepted into the U.S. Naval Academy, fulfilling his personal dream. Ted graduated from Mass Maritime in 1950 and continued on to the USNA, where he graduated in 1954. He then began an accomplished Navy career, including Shipyard Commander at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard and Vice Commander, Naval Sea Systems Command.
In addition to his work for the Navy, Ted was proud of his family. He met his wife, Alice Dugan, while classmates at Plymouth High School in Plymouth, Mass. Ted and Alice were married during "June Week" at the USNA, and their honeymoon was a cross-country trip to San Diego, California, for Ted's first assignment as Engineer aboard the destroyer USS Twining (DD 540), from 1954 to 1957. His first child, Mark, was born the day after Ted left for a six-month deployment. In 1957, they returned to the East Coast, where Ted attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, graduating with the degrees of Naval Engineer and Masters of Science in Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering. In 1960, he attended submarine school and qualified in submarines while serving as Gunnery Officer aboard USS Trumpetfish (SS 425).
Like most military families, Ted and Alice moved frequently with their family, for varied naval duty stations. One exception was their time in Norfolk, Virginia. Here, while his family lived in the same house, Ted served in five different Navy positions, including an overseas tour in Vietnam (1972 - 1973), where he was Senior Advisor for the Vietnam Naval Shipyard in Saigon. Ted and his family fondly remember their 10 years there, enjoying a rare opportunity for a Navy family to put down roots. This time also afforded Ted the opportunity to become involved in the local community, including coaching his sons in youth sports.
He and Alice returned to their beloved New England in August 1976, where he served at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in Kittery, Maine, initially as Production Officer then, in 1978, Shipyard Commander. Ted's management style was close and personable; he enjoyed riding his bicycle down to the drydocks, to talk to the workers and check on the submarine repairs. While he went on to positions of even greater responsibility, he often referred to this time as the pinnacle of his career.
Promoted to Rear Admiral, Ted served as Supervisor of Shipbuilding in Groton, Connecticut, overseeing the construction of nuclear powered attack and Trident ballistic missile submarines, including the 1st Trident, Ohio (SSBN 726). Here, he received his first of two Distinguished Service Medals, the Navy's highest non-combat award, for major contributions to the design and construction of the Ohio and Los Angeles classes of nuclear powered submarines. Ted's last assignment was in Washington, DC, where he served as Vice Commander, Naval Sea Systems Command and, additionally, Chief Engineer of the Navy, from 1983-1988.
In 1982, Ted received an Honorary Doctorate's degree in Public Administration from Massachusetts Maritime Academy. He was highly-decorated, including twice receiving the Distinguished Service Medal, twice receiving the Legion of Merit, and the Meritorious Service Medal.
Ted and Alice retired to beautiful Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, where they taught Sunday school at Holy Family Catholic Church, enjoyed bike riding and long walks, swimming in the ocean, and entertaining family and friends. Ted and Alice traveled internationally, visiting, among other countries, Australia, Greece, Ireland, and Spain. They celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary by bringing their children to Italy, and they also made a pilgrimage to Fatima, Portugal. In 2014, due to failing health, they moved to Saco, Maine to be closer to family. Ted and Alice were married 64 years; Alice died in 2018.
Ted was hard-working, patriotic, determined, intelligent, and athletic. He loved music, the Boston Red Sox, and a good laugh. He was a devoted husband and a caring father, grandfather, and great grandfather. He delighted in family celebrations; he especially loved to hold the babies. He lived a full and good life, and he will be much missed.
Ted is survived by his brother, Barrie W. Young (Ann) of Plymouth, Mass., and five children, Mark L. Young (Susan) of Saco, Maine, David M. Young (Monica) of Greenland, N.H., Maureen Young Ingram (Tony) of Silver Spring, Md., Harold L. Young, Jr. "Sonny" (Suzanne) of Bethesda, Md., and Ralph F. Young (Kristen) of Franklin, Mass. He leaves behind 17 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren.
The family would like to thank the caregivers of Home Instead and Seal Rock Healthcare in Saco, Maine, for their compassionate care in Ted's final years.
SERVICES: Admiral Young will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery, at a later date. To view his memorial page or leave an online condolence, please visit www.cotefuneralhome.com.
Memorial contributions may be made to Massachusetts Maritime Academy (www.maritime.edu/give) or Holy Family Catholic Church (www.holyfamilyhhi.org).

9/3/20

Death of a Classmate -Thomas Upton Sisson Jr. - 10th Co.


Thomas Upton Sisson Jr., 87, of Rehoboth Beach and Paris, France, passed away peacefully Monday, Aug. 31, 2020, at his home in Rehoboth Beach, of cancer.  Tom was the beloved husband of Mary Mallory Marshall (the former Mrs. Stuart Bowen Sr.), who survives him; the beloved father of his three sons, Edward, Thomas and Patterson; ; the beloved stepfather of Mary Mallory's children Stuart Bowen and Sophie Schubert; the beloved grandfather of seven, as well as step grandfather of another seven; and the beloved great-grandfather of three (all surviving).  His beloved first wife, Mary Winslow, died in 1999.
Tom was born Sept. 9, 1932, in San Diego, Calif., to Thomas Upton Sisson and Edith Grey Nance.  As a child during World War II, Tom followed his mother to various Navy postings on the Atlantic and Pacific coasts while his father, a career Naval officer, fought the Germans in the Atlantic, the "Vichy" French in North Africa, and the Japanese in the Pacific.  
After graduating St. Albans School in Washington, D.C., in 1950, where he was chosen senior prefect, Tom followed his father's footsteps into the U.S. Naval Academy (class of 1954) where Tom graduated in the top 2 percent of more than 800 midshipmen.  
Tom then began a stellar 30-year Navy career.  Originally posted to destroyers, Tom sought the greater adventure and camaraderie of submarines, becoming in 1957 the junior officer aboard the diesel submarine Wahoo, out of Hawaii, where the executive officer (second-in-command) was Bill Crowe, the future chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and then ambassador to Great Britain.  Admiral Crowe specifically mentions Tom with praise in his oral history compiled by the Navy historical office.
This began Tom's 15-year career in submarines, from 1957 into 1972, broken only by a two-year stint at Stanford University to earn a master's degree in political science, and time ashore in training programs.  Being 6-foot, 4-inches tall, Tom always was the tallest man aboard every submarine - another half-inch and he would have been barred from submarines altogether, due to height.  Every mission he took throughout his career, Tom had to bunk "knees-bent" because no bunk was long enough for him to stretch straight and relax.  This was quite a hardship considering most of his missions were 60 days long, and the rest of the missions longer - that is how strongly he wanted to serve in submarines.
The opening of the submarine nuclear power program brought Tom into the orbit of the famed and feared Admiral Rickover, where Tom excelled in nuclear power school. Tom was assigned to the nuclear attack submarine Shark as reactor control officer, while Shark was still under construction.  This made Tom a "plank owner" of the Shark.  
Shark, with Tom running the nuclear reactor, in 1961 left the Norfolk, Va., navy base to make the first cruise of a U.S. nuclear-powered submarine into the Mediterranean Sea, where Shark welcomed aboard the King, Queen, Prince and Princess of Greece, and the future King of Spain, for a several-hour voyage, including a dive, and allowing the Queen to stand on the sail-plane while Shark, running on the surface, made such a bow-wave that the splash soaked the Queen's feet and legs, leaving her to pad around barefoot aboard for the rest of the cruise, while her shoes and stockings dried - one of Tom's favorite stories.  The Queen, a great friend of Rickover's, was delighted.  
Tom then became engineering officer of the nuclear missile-deterrent submarine Abraham Lincoln, home-ported in New London, Conn., supply base in Scotland.  Tom was on Lincoln in Scotland on resupply when President Kennedy ordered Lincoln to rush to sea on 24-hours-notice at the height of the Cuban Missile Crisis.  Tom then became executive officer of the nuclear attack submarine Scamp, out of San Diego, making the kinds of secret spy missions written-up in the 1998 book "Blind Man's Bluff: the Untold Story of American Submarine Espionage" - a book that closed-mouth Tom and most other members of the "silent service" grumbled ought never to have been written.  It was the only way his children learned some of what he had done, more than 30 years after the fact.  In about 1999, when Tom, retired, was on the computer at home looking at "Google earth" and putting in push-pins to mark significant places in his life, his son Edward happened to walk in, and, having just read "Blind Man's Bluff," joked that Dad's set of pins would all be in spots in the trackless oceans, and that Dad couldn't tell any of us what any of the pins meant.  Tom laughed and agreed - and then told Edward he wasn't "cleared" to be in the room, and that Edward had to leave.  
After his time as executive officer of Scamp, the Navy then sent Tom to Stanford University to earn a master's in political science, and to give him a two-year quiet stay ashore much appreciated by his children.  
Upon earning his master's, the Navy made Tom commander of the "Blue Crew" of the nuclear missile deterrent submarine Ulysses S. Grant, home-ported in Honolulu, Hawaii, with the supply base in Guam.  (Missile submarines have two complete crews, Blue and Gold, which alternate aboard every three months).  Tom led Grant on several missile deterrent patrols before taking Grant to Bremerton, Wash., and the Hood Canal Navy base, for conversion and upgrade from Polaris to Poseidon missiles.  
Tom, commanding the Blue Crew, then sailed Grant through the Panama Canal to take up duties in the Atlantic, home-ported in Charleston, S.C.  An exciting moment for the boys was when they went to the Kennedy Space Center to watch their father test-fire two missiles, while the boys rode a watching destroyer.  An additional treat was that this was the day of the Apollo 15 moon-mission "roll-out" of the gigantic Saturn V rocket, which the boys walked around as it slowly crept toward the launch pad.  
After several deterrent patrols in Grant, in 1972 Tom was assigned to the Pentagon in a series of posts advising on nuclear weapons policy, including the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT), and taking advanced studies at the National War College.  The secretary of defense in 1979 awarded Tom the Defense Meritorious Service Medal for this work, stating that Tom provided "clear, concise answers to major sensitive issues having a direct bearing on national security and policies.  Captain Sisson's distinctive achievements reflect great credit on himself, the United States Navy and the Office of the Secretary of Defense."  
In mid-1980, Tom received the diplomatic posting of United States Naval Attaché to France, a three-year job, 1980-83.  Then followed a one-year posting as liaison to the French Navy in Toulon, France.  Tom received the Order of Merit for his diplomatic service from the government of France, for his successful efforts to ease the sometimes difficult relations between the two countries, particularly in allowing American nuclear-powered warships to make more frequent goodwill visits into French ports.
Of all those men and women who have earned the praise for military service that we know so well, Tom truly is in the first rank of those who deserve the words: "Thank you for your service."
Tom retired in 1984 to an apartment in Paris, summering in Rehoboth Beach.  In retirement, Tom devoted himself first to fly fishing: traveling across the U.S. and Europe, winning a trophy in a nationwide competition in fly-casting, and giving personal lessons in casting to the most avid in the sport.  
Tom also took care over the decades to bring his children and grandchildren (both "born" and "step") to Paris many times, introducing all of them to the wonders of Paris.  His children and grandchildren will never forget his thoughtfulness in seeing that they all got the chance to have long visits in the most beautiful city in the world, led by a man who knew the language, the city, its people, its culture, and its cuisine inside-out like a native - which basically he was, beginning in 1980, until infirmity brought the trips to an end in about 2018 - a span of almost 40 years.  Tom truly was an American friend to France, and he made all Americans look better in the eyes of the people of France.
As age wore-down Tom's ability to withstand the rigors of rough river-banks and strong streams pressing on his waders, Tom took up ham radio, fitting-out his Rehoboth Beach house with a large hat-like antenna that catches the curious excited eye of every small boy on the street, fitting-out the back room as a "radio shack" so that he could communicate all over the world, and joining the local Southern Delaware community of ham radio operators.  
Born and raised in the Episcopal Church, in mid-1999 Tom felt a stronger call from the Catholic Church; undertook the necessary studies; and was admitted into the Catholic Communion.  
A funeral service for Tom in accordance with Tom's strong Catholic faith - and, by coincidence, also a birthday celebration - will be held Wednesday, Sept. 9, (which would have been his 88th birthday), at 11 a.m., at Parsell Funeral Homes & Crematorium, Atkins-Lodge Chapel, 16961 Kings Highway, Lewes, where friends may call beginning at 10 a.m.  Interment with full military honors will be held at Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Va., at a later date.
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and in keeping with safety protocols, social distancing must be observed and masks must be worn during all aspects of funeral services.
In lieu of flowers, contributions in Tom's memory are suggested to St. Albans School, Mount St. Alban, Washington, DC  20016-5069.
Please visit Tom's Life Memorial Webpage and sign his online guestbook at www.parsellfuneralhomes.com.

9/1/20

Death of a Classmate - Capt. Kenneth W. Ruggles - 21st Co.



Capt. Kenneth W. Ruggles went home to be with his Lord on August 9, 2020.
He grew up in very austere beginnings in Mountain Ranch CA, raised by his grandparents. He attended a one room school and went on to graduate from Annapolis Naval Academy. He was a cum laude graduate from MIT with a PHD as a Meteorological Scientist. His accomplishments in the Navy and private sector were many and great. He was a true gentleman and revered by all who knew him.
He is survived by his loving and adoring wife, Rita; daughter Anne (Bill), grandsons: Evan and Ethan, sisters: Marilyn (Tim), and Deborah, one brother, Barnaby (Teri), step children: Cherie (Mike), Scott (Alexis), Cindy (Chuck), 10 step grandchildren and 7 step great-grandchildren.
He is preceded in death by wife Gilda and son Bill.
A private funeral will take place with full military honors at Miramar National Cemetery, San Diego, CA at a later date.
FitzHenry-Wiefels Palm Desert has been entrusted with arrangements.
Published in The Desert Sun from Aug. 28 to Sep. 1, 2020.

Dick Raymond's September Poem - "MY ‘50’S SUMMER CRUISE"

MY '50'S SUMMER CRUISE

A Seventy-Year Reflection


I'd sweated through Exam Week, but Whoops! I'd barely passed,

The Mighty MO was waiting, 'twas off on cruise at last—

Eight "cans", one battlewagon, we sailed to Boston, first,

Then down to New York harbor, where we might quench a thirst.


We bid farewell to Gotham, set sail for Panama,

The shore's delights were tempting, few damsels wore a bra—

Up anchor, bound for Gitmo, we sipped on cold Hatuey,

No liberty in Cuba, to which we answered Phooey!


Our doughty little squadron steered clear of lesser craft,

We did our daily dozen, we swept down, fore and aft,

We scrubbed and chipped and painted, we holystoned the decks,

We manned the signal halyards, no thought for suds or sex.


Heigh-ho for dear old Crabtown, we had the Dome in sight,

Our classmates now were Youngsters, hail, Greenbury's green light!

The launches came to greet us, we'd voyaged with the fleet,

But with one stripe came pleasure--the new Plebes were our meat!


5-27-20










8/2/20

Dick Raymond's August Poem - “SHATTERER OF WORLDS”


 
                                                                                


"SHATTERER OF WORLDS" 

6 August 1945, over Hiroshima

 

            Now Colonel Paul Tibbets, of Quincy, is handed the horrible  mission,

            The aircraft--named for his own mother, a lady called Enola Gay—

            Fat egg in its belly, yolk loaded, all set for the moment of fission,

            Takes off from small Tinian, climbing through clouds of a beautiful day.

 

            Straight on, all alone in the ether, the Superfort, silver in sunlight,

            Soars over its target, so peaceful, no thought of the oncoming hour—

            "Bomb away" quoth the aimer, the aircraft wheels rapidly round for the home-flight,            

             As beneath them, a slumbering city is treated to terrible power.

 

            An ominous blossom arises, a purple, cylindrical column

            Quick-following sun-bright expansion, leaves stricken survivors  aghast,

            A sinister shadow outspreading, a mushroom all silent and  solemn,

            And wars, from this moment, are altered, whole cities erased in the blast.

 

            But far from the blue Marianas, a scientist, sunk in depression,

            Smokes hundreds of cigarettes, striving to expunge that bright vision of doom

            As lank Oppenheimer soft-murmurs a prayer to preclude its  progression,

            The Baghavad-Gita, in Sanskrit, "Behold, I have Death in my  womb!"

 

            5-30-20

 

* This line from the Baghavad-Gita was supposedly spoken by chief scientist Robert Oppenheimer, on observing the "Trinity" test of the first atomic bomb, at Los Alamos, N.M, 16 July 1945. He suffered from years of guilt over the event.