Author Archive

Oct 15

The Life & Service of a World War 2 Mine Warfare Sailor. Part 3

Tuesday, October 15, 2019 12:01 AM

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This Blog picks up with my grandfather Thomas Schreck’s journal on 8 May 1944. My grandfather was a passenger on the liberty ship SS Reverdy Johnson in route to Algeria to meet the ship he served on until the end of the war. The Reverdy Johnson was part of convoy UGS-40 that sailed from Norfolk, Virginia on 23 April, my grandfather boarded two days earlier. Monday May 8th Started betting on when we would see the rock, Saw birds and small craft. The rock is the Rock of Gibraltar, which every ship traveling to North Africa passed. Seeing birds and small… Read the rest of this entry »

 
Oct 8

The Retro Bomb

Tuesday, October 8, 2019 12:01 AM

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Author’s note: The term “retro bomb” is used throughout this article in preference to the alternate “retrorocket” which to the modern reader might cause confusion. The later term was often used at the time this weapon was in service, as a retrorocket as we know it today had yet to exist. On 24 February 1944, Patrol Squadron VP-63 scored their first victory against a German U-boat, marking almost two years of development and use of their unique weapon, the retro bomb. Two of their PBY Catalina aircraft drove U-761 to the surface and forced its abandonment off Gibraltar. Weeks after… Read the rest of this entry »

 
Sep 19

The Life & Service of a World War 2 Mine Warfare Sailor. Part 2

Thursday, September 19, 2019 12:01 AM

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With this blog I pickup on day four of my grandfather, Thomas D. Schreck’s journal. To recap, he was a passenger aboard the liberty ship SS Reverdy Johnson traveling to North Africa to join the ship he would serve on until the end of the war. The Reverdy Johnson was part of convoy UGS-40 which departed Norfolk, Virginia on 23 April 1944. I am writing this blog as a way to preserve his experiences for the historic record so that future generations may continue to learn from the “Greatest Generation.” As we lose more and more World War II veterans each… Read the rest of this entry »

 
Sep 10

The Angelic Nurses of World War II

Tuesday, September 10, 2019 12:01 AM

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The only thing worse for military members than repeating history is not knowing their heritage. Military members should learn about the women who served during World War II to ensure the long, lasting legacy of their sacrifice. This essay will examine the background of Navy and Army WWII nurse Prisoners of War (POWs), discuss their impact, and inspiration to future generations. Background In March 1941, none of the American nurses stationed in the Philippines during WWII expected to ever experience what lay before them. By December 24th, they were on the run from the Japanese, no longer in hospital buildings… Read the rest of this entry »

 
Sep 3

Operation Sea Orbit

Tuesday, September 3, 2019 12:01 AM

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At the end of a six month cruise to the Mediterranean, the aircraft carrier, USS Enterprise (CVN-65), the cruiser, USS Long Beach (CGN-9) and the destroyer USS Bainbridge (DDG-96), the first three nuclear powered ships of the U.S. Navy made a five month sojourn around the world. The tour demonstrated the power and ability of these ships, without taking on fuel or provisions the ships could still be battle ready when they returned to home port. As the force sailed around the world, a firepower show was performed for dignitaries of the various countries. To accommodate the dignitaries, a viewing… Read the rest of this entry »

 
Aug 21

Hornet Celebrates 50th Anniversary of Apollo 11 Splashdown

Wednesday, August 21, 2019 12:01 AM

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Carefully, a young boy balances his right foot inside the painted outline of a larger foot, then he jumps to the next painted footprint. He’s following the footprints across the floor of the hangar deck of the aircraft carrier USS Hornet, now a museum, berthed at Alameda, California. This is the carrier that recovered the astronauts of Apollo 11: Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong, the first men to walk on the moon, and Michael Collins, pilot of the command module. The boy is following their path from the helicopter that picked them up from the Pacific Ocean, then across the… Read the rest of this entry »

 
Aug 14

The Life & Service of a World War 2 Mine Warfare Sailor. Part 1

Wednesday, August 14, 2019 12:01 AM

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This is the first in a series exploring the World War II service of my paternal grandfather Thomas D. Schreck. I embarked upon this project two years ago in an effort to learn more about his service. My grandfather did not share much with his family about his time in the military, but fourteen years earlier I had an opportunity to spend a great deal of time with him wherein we talked about many topics including his military service. Many of the stories and information he shared with me he had never shared with his children. When he passed away… Read the rest of this entry »

 
Jun 13

The Ladies of Newport

Thursday, June 13, 2019 12:01 AM

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In February 1919, Chief Machinist’s Mate Ervin Arnold found himself stationed at the Newport Naval Training Station in Newport, Rhode Island. Then a 14-year veteran with the U.S. Navy, and around 40, Arnold previously had worked as a detective in his home state of Connecticut for nearly nine years. On his arrival to Newport, Arnold was sent almost directly to the hospital, as he was struggling with a rather severe bout of rheumatism that required frequent medical attention. Not long after arriving, the machinist’s mate became somewhat friendly with his significantly younger fellow sailors, and their conversations eventually turned toward… Read the rest of this entry »

 
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