USS BELL ASSOCIATION (DD587)
IN THIS ISSUE:
Happy New Year to all my BELL family and friends and I hope everyone had a wonderful Holiday Season and that you will have a really happy and healthy New Year. I sat down recently and tried to think where all my time goes but couldn’t think how it could go so fast and all of a sudden it hit me. It’s because I am sitting down too much. I need to get up and get busy. So far this year I have had cataract surgery and about a week later I was in such a hurry to get more things done that I got out of bed and got my foot tangled up in my bedspread and took a little fall and broke my wrist. After all that I’m not sure I really care where my time goes as I have enjoyed having a little time off after the holidays. Now, all is well.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Effective March 1, 2012, the 800 phone number will no longer be available. I have taken it off line due to so many increases in rates and so little usage by members. You will still be able to contact me at 770-938-1803.
Now it’s time to start our plans for the 2012 reunion. This year our reunion will be held in Washington, DC and our arrival date will be Thursday, August 23 and departure date will be Monday, August 27, 2012. These dates in DC give us the best rates. Our hotel is the Crowne Plaza Dulles Airport which is really convenient for those who will be flying. Our rate per day will be $89.00 and you will have until August 6 to make your reservations. As of that date the unsold rooms will be returned to the hotel. When you make your reservation the phone number to use is 703-674-0585 and just tell them you are with the USS BELL Group. The person responsible for taking care of our reservations will be Maroofa Salini if you should have any questions. If you wish to visit earlier or stay after the reunion the same rate will apply up to three days. The hotel offers complimentary airport shuttle service, complimentary parking, early check-in and late check-out for Military groups, handicap rooms (ADA compliant), and there is always complimentary coffee in the lobby. I don’t have the activities just yet but I’m working on them and will send them out in the near future. So, mark your calendar and I hope we will have a large group participating this year as there is no place any more beautiful than our Nations Capitol.
…..I’m writing to give you the news of Elmer Angus. He served on the Bell. He is now in the Veterans Nursing Home here in Florida. He can no longer use his legs, so I can no longer take care of him at home. Although his mind is good, he can’t remember his friends from his ship anymore, so you might as well take his name off your mailing list.
…..Thank you, Wilma Angus
…..Clair has been gone 3 years and missed very much. He has found a good Navy buddy and they will be talking USS BELL. He enjoyed your newsletter so much. He was proud of the Navy. We thank you so much for the years you have put in with the BELL. I request you remove my name. Take care of yourself and enclosed is a small token of appreciation for your time and work. Thank you so much.
….. Corrine I. Dickman
…..Gerald is 86 years old now and we moved to Florida to be closer to our daughter and warm weather. Thanks for the newsletter. He reads all of them. Have good holidays and New Year 2012.
…..Emogene Hensley, 9604 Halyards Ct. Apt 11, Fort Meyers, Fl. 33919-4527
…..I am now in an assisted living residence. The kids didn’t want me to live alone any longer. Always glad to hear about my husband’s ship.
…..Eleanor Ludwig, Colonial Courtyard, Leonard Street, Clearfield, PA 16830
…..Hello! My name is Steve Dalzell. I was in Washington, D.C. in 2005 for the commemoration of the 60th anniversary of VJ Day. While visiting the Navy Memorial, the USS BELL was having a service for all the crewmen who’ve passed on. It was very moving. I looked through the reunion’s pictures this morning and found one with me off to the side. I got a kick out of that! This is a great website. Thank you and thank you to all who served on the USS BELL. I’ve been fascinated with WWII since I was a kid. To me, it was America’s finest hour because good clearly overcame evil and the country was completely united. Keep up the good work and bless you all!
…..Steve Dalzell – firstname.lastname@example.org
…..NOTE: I am so very proud of our website and so happy to say that over 9500 hits have been recorded on the website. That’s a huge number of people searching for some type of information about the USS BELL. A big thank you to my super Webmaster!
…..Dear Ann, Shipmates & Friends:
Thank you for the kind expression of sympathy. Your friendship over the years meant so much to Dad. He looked forward each year to the reunions. We will forever cherish the memories. During a time like this we realize how much our friends and relatives really mean to us. Your expression of sympathy will always be remembered.
…..The Capitanio Family
[ I have been asking shipmates and members to record any stories that they can recall from their days in the Navy and while on the BELL. I have received a few in the past years and printed them in the Newsletter. I have received one that I think you will enjoy and I am happy to print it for you. ]
A destroyer can be very wearing on its crew, which requires replacement from time to time. On the Bell we would receive replacements three or four times a year, and of course they would be fresh out of Boot Camp and not knowledgeable about life on a destroyer. It was inevitable that the first days, weeks or so would require running for the rail to settle stomachs. One case that I remember occurred at the end of the morning watch.
The mess cooks (new recruits) were bringing in a tub of hot oatmeal to the crew’s mess, which was one deck down. This involved bringing the tub out on deck forward to the deckhouse and down a ladder to the mess. It was a fairly rough morning and as soon as the tub entered the deck house mal de mere took over, and both mess cooks headed for the rail after setting the tub down. This position happened to be at the foot of the ladder coming down from the bridge.
Moose Russell, our Communications Officer, was coming off watch and the practice was to grab the overhead “I” beam and swing down the last two rungs. Not knowing about the oatmeal, Moose did this and you guessed it, landed with both feet in the tub of hot oatmeal. It took about 30 seconds for the heat to reach his skin and then there was a major verbal explosion. I happened to be coming in from the weather deck just then and helped Moose discard his boots and socks. The two mess cooks came in and calmly picked up the tub and carried it down to the crew’s mess. Of course, they didn’t see what happened to Moose and incidentally, I never heard any complaints about the oatmeal.
Submitted by Dick Daniels
And now a page from history – Over 500 U.S. Navy Warships were sunk or destroyed during WWII. Here is the first in a series of those famous ships.
Key: Battleships (BB) – Aircraft Carriers (CV) – Aircraft Carrier, Small (CVL) – Aircraft Carrier, Escort (CVE) – Heavy Cruiser (CA)
USS Arizona (BB-39) destroyed by Japanese aircraft bombs at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, 7 December 1941, and stricken from the Navy List, 1 December 1942.
USS Oklahoma (BB-37) capsized and sank after being torpedoes by Japanese aircraft at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, 7 December 1941.
USS Hornet (CV-8) sunk after being torpedoed by Japanese aircraft during the Battle of Santa Cruz, Solomon Islands, 26 October 1942.
USS Lexington (CV-2) sunk after being torpedoed by Japanese aircraft during the Battle of the Coral Sea, 8 May 1942.
USS Wasp (CV-7) sunk after being torpedoed by Japanese submarine I-19 south of Guadalcanal, Solomon Islands, 15 September 1942.
USS Yorktown (CV-5) damaged by aircraft bombs on 4 June 1942 during the Battle of Midway and sunk after being torpedoed by Japanese submarine I-168, 7 June 1942.
USS Princeton (CVL-23) sunk after being bombed by Japanese aircraft during the Battle of Leyte Gulf, Philippine Islands, 24 October 1944.
USS Bismarck Sea (CVE-95) sunk by Kamikaze aircraft off Iwo Jima, Volcano Islands, 21 February 1945.
USS Block Island (CVE-21) sunk after being torpedoed by German submarine U-549 northwest of the Canary Islands, 29 May 1944.
USS Gambier Bay (CVE-73) sunk by gunfire of Japanese warships during the Battle of Leyte Gulf off Samar, Philippine Islands, 25 October 1944.
USS Liscome Bay (CVE-56) sunk after being torpedoed by Japanese submarine I-175 off Gilbert Islands, 24 November 1943.
USS Ommaney Bay (CVE-79) sunk by Kamikaze attack south of Mindoro, Philippine Islands, 4 January 1945.
USS St. Lo (CVE-63) sunk by Japanese aircraft during the Battle of Leyte Gulf off Samar, Philippine Islands, 25 October 1944.USS Astoria (CA-34 sunk by gunfire of Japanese warships off Savo, Solomon Islands, 9 August 1942.
(To be continued in next Newsletter.)