USS THOMAS C. HART (DE/FF-1092) VETERANS ASSOCIATION

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Here's where we'll list announcements, items of interest, and news about shipmates.  If you'd like to post information here, please click the link and let us know.  Also, if you know the whereabouts or how to contact other TCH shipmates who aren't TCHVA members or registered on our sailing list, please submit that information as well so we may contact them. 
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Jeff Bacon, the creator of "Broadside" cartoons has given us permission to display his cartoons on our website!  Look for Jeff's work throughout the site!  
 
 Check out Patrick Burke's new Sea Story on the Sea Story page. 

Click to Read Familygram from 85!

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Click to see latest Federal Benefits for Veterans Booklet

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Welcome shipmates.  If you would like to share your contact information with our TCHVA members, please complete the form below.  This information will not ever be made public or shared with any non-TCHVA member.  By providing your contact information, we will incorporate the information in our master TCHVA database to which TCHVA members have access.  Thanks

Contact information (info will only be shared with TCHVA Members):
First name:
Last name:
Email address:
Confirm Email:
Year Reported:
Year Detached:
Rate/Rank:
Street Address:
City/State/Zip:
Phone:
Please Click Submit :

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As the founder, past President, and current Secretary of TCHVA, I'd  like to thank everyone who has helped build the Association!  The membership has grown and we continue to grow!  Those of you who are  visiting the site for the first time searching for shipmates or glimpses of the past, I'd urge you to consider joining the Association and above all, attending the upcoming Norfolk reunion!  Unless you have attended a reunion, you just can't imagine the feeling when you are suddenly face to face with your shipmates from decades ago!  The memories of foreign ports, liberty adventures, the faces of shipmates, and much more all come flooding back to your mind!  

When I started TCHVA years ago as a labor of love, I did so because my days on TCH were some the best of my 22 year career!  TCH was a great ship; we had great leaders in our CO's, a hard working and superbly talented crew, and one heck of a lot of fun!  Naturally, there were times we'd all like to forget as well but when the "big picture" is considered -  TCH stands out as one great tour!  As you may know the TCH is now in the hands of the Turks, and some say, she is destined for scrapping soon.  While that would be unfortunate, we who sailed her know that the ship is just a mechanical "thing".  A ship can do NOTHING without a crew.  What really gives life and spirit to a ship is the crew that puts her to sea!  You were the very "HEART" OF HART.  It is that "HEART" that we gather to celebrate and remember.  It is all about you - the crew of TCH!  Godspeed!

 Garry Collins (Suppo 86-89) 

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 JOIN or RENEW NOW.  YOUR $20 MEMBERSHIP FEE WILL PAY YOUR MEMBERSHIP DUES THRU 2015!  Click the "Join TCHVA" page on the left or click the link below!  We're not charging for the balance of 2013!

CLICK TO JOIN TCHVA NOW!

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Shipmate Kerry Long has been in contact with our ships sponsor, Penny Bragonier.  Penny is the granddaughter of Admiral Hart!  It's great to finally make contact with Penny and we welcome her to our site!  Please read about Kerry's distinguished career after leaving the TCH and the Navy.

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Submitted by Kerry Long

Commissioning day VIP's:  RADM Rumble, First District Commandant, Congressman Joe Moakley, Penny Hart Bragonier, LCDR Ronald Forst, and Caroline Brownson Hart, Penny's mother and widow of Admiral Hart.  

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Received this email from Naci - a Turkish sailor who served on TCG Zafer

 

Sir,

I am (ret) BTMCPO of TCG zafer, TC HART.

I was member of  turnover party, US to Turkey. I have worked onboard 1992-2000. TCG Zafer is the only one that is still in commision.  The others are decommissioned.

This time I can not be with you. I hope next time my wife and me can be with you.

Very Regards.

Naci Öztürk 

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We received an email from Richard Gale, previously a crewmember of HMS Alfriston.  Richard wrote" wonder if any of your veterans remember when the USS TC Hart was in gibralter.  I remember this ship because I was serving on a british minsweeper and we had a football with some of the Harts crew afterwards we were invited back on board your ship for a meal which was fantastic and we later invited some of your crew onto our ship for a few beers, I remember some of your crew staggering back to your ship happy days.
Please pass this message to your members they might remember this event.
Best wishes
MR Richard Gale EX WEM(R)1 HMS Alfriston"
 
If anyone remembers the football game after the beers, give Richard a yell at:
 
 

Click here to email Richard

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TCH veteran selected for Admiral!

U.S. Navy Photo
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Captain Willie L. Metts, USN

We're very proud to announce that Captain Willie L. Metts, USN has been selected for promotion to Rear Admiral!  He began his naval career aboard TCH as an Ensign in the late 80's.  RADM (sel) Metts is currently serving as, division director information warfare senior detailer/placement officer (PERS 47) in Millington, TN.  In addition to his promotion to Admiral, he was also selected as the 2010 Distinguished Black Engineer of the Year by the National Society of Black Engineers.  For those of us know Willie and had the opportunity to serve with him on TCH , we know the Navy has done the right thing by selecting this fine officer to flag rank!  Way to go shipmate! BZ!

Update 2013 - RADM Metts is now the Pacific Command's top Intelligence Officer.  Click the biography link below for more! 

Click here to read the comments left by Admiral Mett's shipmates!

Click here to read RADM Mett's official Navy Bio (Wow, what an exciting job this must be - at the forefront of National Security!)

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Patrick Burke has provided some links if you are interested in modeling.  The wooden models are great but pricey.  The resin models are also nice for the price conscious!

 

f you want a museum quality ship model and money is no object then look at these sites
 
If you like to build your own ship model or money is a consideration:

http://www.steelnavy.com/ 

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"YA GOTTA HAVE HART"

Where did the phrase "Ya Gotta Have Hart" originate? Click here to find out!

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Attention TCHVA Members! - Has your email address or other personal information changed?  If so, please report it here so we can update our records.  

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Click here to email Secretary about your dues status!

Tommy Sexton found this link to a Turkish floating museum featuring the ex-USS Ainsworth. Click here!

Tommy Sexton also found the USS Paul. Click here.

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Captain F. Richard "Dick" Whalen, USN (ret), CO (81 - 83) is also an accomplished artist, specializing in marine art.  Click the below links to learn more about Captain Whalen and his art!

Click to read about CAPT Whalen's art!

Click to see CAPT Whalen's Ad

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We received the following from Steven Greisman: "I was a member of the US Naval Sea Cadet Corps USS Wright Division that were guests abord the Hart when she called on Port Everglades Fla as part of Unitas 76'. Several of us were allowed to take the helm for a period of time. That is an experience I will never forget. I wore my Hart windbreaker throught Jr. High." Thanks for sharing your story Steven!

We received the following from "Thomas C. Hart" -  Sir: According to family I was named after the Admiral. My father was in the Army at the time of WWII.   Thanks.  Thomas C. Hart, Commander, Support Services Division, South Windsor Police Department, South Windsor, Connecticut

Received the following from Richard Wilkinson:  "Ex-turdchaser aboard the Tommy Chuck, many good memories and good times. Seen things that I could not have seen otherwise, being a countryboy from Arkansas, first ship, first time at sea, couldn't swim, Wow!!! What a rush!!! She brings back good memories,times, and old friends that I wonder where they are now. Anybody remember 'the dwarf','R' division, Philly shipyards, 1979-1983,original rough rider for big red, shortest hotsuitman in history."

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Received the following email from Dean Hoover, a director of the Destroyer Escort Sailors Association -" My name is Dean Hoover, a DESA Director and I would like your permission to reprint some of your sea stories for the DESA Newspaper.  Of course the writer would get credit for it.  Also I would like to get permisson to get to the crew email list as I'm the recuriter for DESA and the 1000 class guys are the ones to keep the DE history going as there are no more DE's and never will be.  Thank you, Dean Hoover MM3 ,USS Van Vorrhis DE-1028, USS Hartley DE-1029."  Due to our privacy policy I was unable to pass on all the TCHVA members' email addresses but I have linked the DESA website on our links page.  I encourage all hands to consider joining DESA as it is a specific organization dedicated to DE's and FF's.  You can email Dean directly at DE-1029@mchsi.com.  Those of you who have submitted Sea Stories should check the DESA site as they may be displayed there as well!!

 

Check out this great link to the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier - A great history lesson with lots of pictures.

Tommy Sexton has found some interesting reflections.  Click the "Navy Experience" link below to bring back some shared memories of your Navy LIfe. 

The Navy Experience!

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Photo courtesy of Capt Dick Whalen
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TCH transits Germany's Keil Canal enroute "Kieler Woche"
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Do you know about the "Golden Thirteen"? Click here to find out more about the men whose commissioning was truly historic!

What happened to RTC/NTC Orlando Florida? Click here to see for yourself!

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All Hands (TCH Vets Only) - Click the "Yellow Banner" below to visit the Ship's Office so you can add your name to the Master Sailing List for TCH!
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Please take a few moments to read the below poems:  I think you'll identify with the themes!  They do bring back memories!

Click to read the "Grey Destroyer Crew" Poem

Click to read "I was a Sailor Once"

Interested in a small scale model of the TCH? Patrick Burke submitted this for your consideration! Click here to view the model.

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AWOL Shipmates Wanted!

Capt Joe Callahan Capt USN is searching for TCH CO Capt John F. Bennett Jr.  If anyone has any info on Capt Bennett, please contact Capt Callahan at homeport@visuallink.comDave Miller (XO 80-81) is searching for Hugh Blomeke (CHENG), Larry Brown (WEPS), & Ray Pilcher (OPS).  If anyone has any info these folks, give Dave a yell (his email address is in the Members Only Sailing List).
TCHVA plankowner, OS2 David Nusbaum (83-87), is searching for Dirk Ness and Xavier Castro.  Dirk & Xavier, if you read this, click the link at the bottom of the page and let us know your whereabouts.  I know Dave would be thrilled! 

Deceased Shipmates

If you know any TCH vet who has passed away and his name is not on our Eternal Deployment page, please let us know so that we may honor them!  We had a call out for years about the sailors who were killed in Roosevelt Roads.  Shipmate Kerry Long, while cleaning out a storage locker, came across all the information he had saved from his days aboard TCH.
The names of our three shipmates who passed away when their rental car rolled off an embankment on the Roosevelt Roads Naval Station, are:
  • STG3 Oswald W. Branham, Fox Division, who had been onboard less than a month when the accident occurred;
  • FN Daniel R. Baez, "R" Division, a plankowner; and
  • BTFA Audra J. Henderson, "B" Division, who reported aboard in late 1974.
There were five HART sailors in the car.  The two survivors were MS3 Raymond E. Chatfield, and SA Avery W. Williams.

Report Deceased Shipmates here

TCHVA Plankowner ETN3 Patrick Burke (78-80) Still Underway!

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Pat provided the "now" picture and description of a recent underway period.  He writes "Attached is a current picture from the 9/20/06 to 10/8/06 San Francisco - San Diego cruise on the WW2 Liberty Ship SS Jeremiah O'Brien. I was the "junior" Able Seaman [A/B] on the 4-8 & 16-20 watches, the "senior" A/B was an 80 year old WW2 Merchant Seaman [volunteer] who sailed Liberty's. I have been a volunteer deck crewmember for over 18 years and hold a current USCG MMD. Still sailing and loving it.
Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Pat Burke ex-ETN3 OE Div. FF-1092 7/23/78 to 8/20/80."

I have input for the 1MC page.

"YA GOTTA HAVE HART"