May President’s Update

Posted: 5/9/2020

Our March meeting was a fantastic success.  Our speaker was David Rajkovich, president of the Stockton Maritime Museum in Northern California and a few members of his staff.  David made a presentation on the non-magnetic ships, minesweeping and ship Building.  His organization is currently restoring the USS LUCID (MSO 458).  Our oldest active alumni, John Frerichs, was a plank owner on the Lucid in 1955. John and his daughter were in attendance.

Unfortunately, this March meeting will be our last get together for a while.  Our May and June meetings as well as our council meeting and the tour of the restored ships at Swan Island are cancelled.  While we have not cancelled our July meeting, it is doubtful if it will be held. USNA Parent Club activities have likewise been cancelled.

The good news is that we are still planning to hold our annual picnic (with our USMA colleagues) on August 1st in Washougal. Being able to have the picnic will be dependent on both current restrictions by the state of Washington as well as our assessment of the potential risk to our alumni(too many of us are at the age where we had a real plebe year).  If we are able to hold the picnic it will be a potluck vs catered event, with a small fee to cover expenses.  More info and guidance to follow.

At our September meeting (September 9th at 11:30 at the Old Spaghetti Factory) we will host SGM (ret) Gavin McLlvenna, President of the Society of Honor Guard for the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.  November 11, 2021 will be the 100th anniversary of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.  SGM (ret) McLlvenna will give us insights into the origins and history of the Tomb.  I was able to hear him speak at the USMA meeting in Dec.  He is quite impressive.  You do not want to miss this.

Important: We have been without a chapter secretary for quite a while, which has not been a big deal, because Frank Swientek has done such a wonderful job of submitting our Shipmate articles, including special interest articles, allowing us to have several submissions in many Shipmate articles.  Frank, however, is stepping down after 3 years so we need a replacement.  Please contact Frank if you would like to take on the job.  This is probably our most significant communications tool.

There was an International Chapter President Forum held remotely this past Friday.  Doug Ballard, John Adams and I participated.  Some interesting information from the presentations:

The Class of 2020 has 1042 graduates.  The Academy will have several Tecumseh Court Graduations of about 240 Grads per event.  This will allow the Midshipmen to get back to the Academy, get their things and have on site graduation.  There will be a virtual graduation om May 22 which will be streamed live.   The ceremony will be broadcast on the following link:


There will be no shipboard summer assignments.  The Academy is looking at possibly having summer academic classes and cruises in the fall.

Other than that, there are no firm plans for anything, including I Day (pretty much like the rest of the world).

There will be a new publication issued shortly called Unprecedented.  It will feature stories of USNA grads/midshipmen with the COVID-19 virus pandemic.

As most of you know the Chapel Dome is being replaced.  IF you would like a bit of the old (90 year old) copper being replaced, Herff Jones (the ring maker) has taken the copper and has a line of products with the material.  These range from jewelry to challenge coins to framed pictures.  If interested go to www.usnachapeldome,com.

Lastly I would recommend that if you are interested in following what is happening at the Academy and with Oregon and SW Washington past, present and future midshipmen, visit the USNA Parent’s club web site and follow them on Facebook.  Jeneane Douglas, the Parents Club Social Media Coordinator (son Cameron, ’21) Is doing a great job keeping us posted on current events with our Mids at Annapolis.

Everyone please stay safe and sane in this low budget B movie we all find ourselves in.

Remember, Chapter Challenge Coins can be the perfect gift.  See Frank Swientek.