Internet Edition of

The Old Salt's Journal

Volume I - No. 1 Winter 1998

The Coast Guard Sea Veterans of America National Quarterly Newsletter


This is the first issue of our Quarterly Newsletter called the "Old Salts Journal." We expect to publish it sometime during each season of the year. A retired Coast Guardsman, Jack Eckert of Port Washington, Wisconsin has been appointed interim editor until a permanent editor is named.


The Comments of the President, Mr. Larry Stefanovich will appear in the next issue.


For Retirees: It is a good idea to keep abreast of the actions of Congress. One way to do this is to join The Fleet Reserve Association. They are a very effective lobbying organization and keep their members well informed of how the actions of our elected officials will effect you.


Old Salt's who have access to the Internet are encouraged to sign on at Fred's Place, THE site that contains names and addresses of more than 10,000 Coasties of all stripes. The email address is http:\\ You will also find an area aptly named The Reunion Hall which provides a place for each current and former cutter, station, etc. to be signed on to by former crewmen. Look into each unit you were ever on and maybe you will find an old ship mate or two.

The Home Page address of the Coast Guard SeaVets is

You can contact the National Secretary, Mr. Ken Long at

You can contact the News Letter Editor, Mr. Jack Eckert at

If you have an email address please contact either Mr. Long or Mr. Eckert so that it can be listed for easy contact.


Jim Carney is writing a book about the three Cutters named ESCANABA.

Two major reunions are being planned by two separate groups. One group is organizing one for 255 sailors which will be held in Las Vegas next September. The other group is planning one for Ice Breaker sailors. More in the next issue.

If you have something of interest to post submit it to the editor.


We're looking for recommendations for possible reunion or get-together sites and dates. We're thinking of a West Coast location, an East Coast location and maybe a mid-west location. Any ideas or offers to help host one of these potential soirees will be appreciated. Contact Mr. Ken Long, National Secretary.


Current Coast Guard Sea Veterans of America Stations:

Station Number 1 - Milwaukee, Wisconsin; point of contact: Gordon Kelley - 414-425-1989

Station Number 2 - Chicago, Illinois; point of contact: Jude Domanski - 312-779-1204

Station Number 3 - Hurley, Wisconsin; point of contact: James Geller - 715-561-2801

Station Number 4 - Vicksburg, Mississippi; point of contact: William (Ski) Kucharski (w) 800-522-6937 ext 3512; (h) 601-636-8012

Station Number 5 - Western North Carolina; point of contact: Herb Reith (704) 667-0487

Station Number 6 - Lexington South Carolina; point of contact: Rod Jernigan (803) 359-5073

Station Number 7 - NW Washington; point of contact: Donald Van Horn - (206) 857-5420

Station Number 8 - Stanford Kentucky; point of contact: Dr.Ed Booth - (606) 365-2326

Station Number 9 - Northern Illinois; point of contact: Mary Fenoglio - (847) 296-8136


Here is some advice for seaman from the "Old Guard."

"Some men think the best way to prove their "saltiness" is by getting a tattoo. The result is a design, usually crude and sometimes embarrassing that remains with them the rest of their life. Tattoo Parlors are frequently unsanitary, and are often out of bounds. Many an infection, some requiring hospitalization, has resulted from tattooing. Among the diseases given to Coast Guardsmen by the tattoo needle are hepatitis, blood stream infections, and tetanus. A man also may develop an allergy to the color pigment used. In short, consider all of the risks before you disfigure yourself for life." The Coast Guardsman Manual - 1952

It has been a long standing seafaring tradition that the first watch at sea on New Years Eve must write the log entry in verse. Here is an entry written in the days of yore on a long winter's weather patrol:


Steaming as before 80 turns on both shafts
Heading into seas, then putting them aft
Up wind for awhile, then run off before'
Pitch, roll and pound, then roll some more
The C.O. sleeps well in his cabin below
Because he's convinced that his OD's "know"
The Exec lies snoring in his stateroom, too;
After movie and poker there's not much to do.
The Chief Engineer dozes, 'tween each pleasant dream
Of boiler exploding amidst clouds of steam
Will the turbine hold up until he's relieved?
Are the words of his predecessor to be believed?
The lookout peers out in the stormy night
Wishing that Boston and home was in sight;
Nothing there but a forty foot swell
New Years Eve at sea is certainly Hell
Down below decks in the engine spaces,
The watch stands ready to go through their paces.
"Let's wait 'til they soogee, then we'll blow tubes;
We'll show those deck apes we're not the boobs.'
The weathermen ready a great big balloon;
And dream they're home in a local saloon.
Nothing to do, but sit and beef
And wait for the CASCO to bring their relief.
Strike eight bells, change the watch
Welcome the New Years without any Scotch.
Next year the DUANE was moored at home
And I won't need to write any poem ...... ..
Extracted from "We've Been There", by Esther V. Stormer, Copyright 1992



Lest we forget our heritage or want our seabag contaminated with sand:

"The statement of the Officer in Charge that he did not try to use the boat because the sea or surf was too heavy will not be accepted

" Instructions for United States Coast Guard Stations - 1934.

Until 1880 the Life Saving Service was made up entirely of volunteers. The candidates had to be able bodied and experienced surfmen and reside near the station at which they were employed. They had to be younger than 45 years of age at the time of enlistment, be able to read and write and have knowledge of the four rules of arithmetic. They also had to poss a thorough knowledge of surfboats.

Civil Service did not provide retirement for service personnel. It was not until 1915 that the older men received any benefits.


He's a rigger, a rower, swimmer, sailor and undertaker.
And he's good at everyone of 'em the same.....
And he risks his life for others in the quicksands and the breakers.
And a thousand wives and mothers bless his name.
He's an angel dressed in oilskins, he's a saint in a "so'wester"
He's as plucky as they make, or even can
He's a hero born and bred, but it hasn't swelled his head
And he's just the U.S. Gov'ments hired hand
Extracted from "We've Been There", by Esther V. Stormer, Copyright 1992

All surfmen were required to wear life preservers made of cork so they wouldn't drown. At the same time they were required to wear hip boots, which assured that they would drown if the boots filled with water. Extracted from "We've Been There", by Esther V. Stormer, Copyright 1992


The Coast Guard SeaVets has a number of items for sale. Refer to your recent mailings.


Members are requested to submit information and timely articles to the editor for inclusion in future issues of The Old Salt's Journal. Letters to the Editor are also invited and will be included in this department.

To The Editor:

Why don't you try to increase membership by offering incentives to recruit new members? I suggest that you award a year's free dues to any member in good status who signs up five members.

A. Friend

Editors Comment - Address this to the Coast Guard SeaVets Executive Board.


This Cutter began life as a Navy PT Boat Tender. She was acquired by the Coast Guard after WWII and was refitted and modified for use as an Ocean Station Vessel. She was

 last homeported at Alemeda, California and finished up her years of United States service in the waters off of Vietnam.

There were portholes in the hull unlike the Navy Seaplane tenders that served in the Coast Guard for many years.

The Coast Guard Hull number was W385. What was the Cutter's Coast Guard Name?


It is only fitting that in our first issue we include the words of the Coast Guard Hymn.

Eternal Father, Lord of Hosts
Watch o'er the ones who guard our coasts
Protect them from the raging seas
And give them light and life and peace.
Grant them from thy great throne above
The shield and shelter of thy love.
Lord, guard and guide the ones who fly
Through the great spaces in the sky
Be with them always in the air,
In darken storms or sunlight fair,
Oh, hear us when we lift our prayer,
For those in peril in the air!
Grant to them Your eternal peace, Oh Lord,
For they have followed your commandment,
That No Greater Love has he, who would
give up his life for another.


The Coast Guard is the primary federal agency with maritime authority for the United States. It is a complex organization of ships, aircraft, boats, and shore stations. It is decentralized both administratively and operationally. Coast Guard personnel respond to tasks in several mission/program areas. A vessel may carry out roles in law enforcement, search and rescue, marine environmental protection, maintenance of aids to navigation, and icebreaking. An aircraft may search for and assist a distressed vessel, conduct pollution detection and surveillance flights, report sightings in conjunction with law enforcement, and evacuate injured people from vessels.

The Coast Guard's multi-mission approach permits a relatively small organization to be responsive to public needs in a wide variety of maritime activities and shift emphasis on short notice when the need arises.

Under federal law the Coast Guard is "At all times an armed force of the United States."


Oh Hendrix take your chow away,
Get it out of sight,
My stomach's turning over,
And I'll never touch a bite.
'Twould not be fair to this good chow,
For me to try to eat it now
Oh Hendrix, take your chow away,
I can not eat tonight.
Oh Hendrix take your chow away;
Better put it back. 
Remove my plate and cutlery;
Return them to the rack.
I tried to eat a meal last night,
The seagulls got the second bite.
Oh Hendrix take your chow away,
So I can hit the sack.
Oh Hendrix take your chow away,
Make it disappear,
For when I see that awful stuff,
It makes me feel so queer.
Sould I partake of this rare dish,
I'd only feed it to the fish.
So Hendrix take your chow away,
'Cause I've got the Mal-De-Mer.
From the magazine CYANTHOLOGY: Compiled by the men of the USCGC CYANE, 1943


Officers and Board Members for 1998 of the Coast Guard Sea Veterans of America are:

Mr. Larry Stefanovich
2419 N. HWY 120
Lake Geneva, WI 53147
(414) 248-9238

Mr. Roger Huff
Board Member
5607 Kenwood Ave.
Chicago, IL 60637-1760
(h) 312-288-3820

Mr. Rod C. Jernigan
Vice President
139 Tarwood Ln.
Lexington, SC 29073-9506
(803) 359-5073 

Mr. Richard T. McCombs
Board Member
2001 Wheeler
Woodridge, IL 60517
(w) 708-954-1282
(h) 708-969-8529 

Mr. James F. Crissy
President of National BOND
17159 Parkside Ave.
Tineley, Park, IL 60477
Pager (w) 312-770-1726
(h) 708-429-4046
(fax) 708-687-3228

Mr. Ken Long
8042 Avery Ln.
WA 98284-9363
(360) 856-2171

Mr. John M. Nelson
Board Member
3504 Cleveland Ave.
Brookfield, IL 60513
(h) 708-485-4711 

Mr. Dennis Streng
412 Cheyenne Pl.
Placentia, CA 92870-1525
(714) 993-3030


We hope that you have enjoyed the first edition of the "Old Salt's Journal." Your suggestions for improvement and your submission of timely and interesting materials will be greatly appreciated.

Look for us again next Spring.


c/o Jack A. Eckert, Editor (Interim)
312 W. Washington St.
Port Washington, Wisconsin 53074
To Any Officer of the SeaVets


The Old Salt's Journal

The Coast Guard Sea Veterans of America Quarterly National Newsletter

In the Next Issue - Wartime Patrol Frigates, Editorials, Ground Pounder Stuff



Coast Guard SeaVets of America

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