Vern's Kudo Page
In creating my Navy Web Pages, I have received compliments from many persons
Several of them are listed below

Hey Vern, 
Thanks for all your hard work on the website. You did a good thing there Vern. I hooked up with an old freind that I thought had died on the rivers in VietNam. I had gone to the Vietnam Memorial in Washington DC to look his name up years ago. It was a tearful day, as I "visited" with old High School who the war had claimed. Yet, to my delight, my friends name wasnt there. Now, thanks to your webpage, I have located him and we have exchanged emails. I can't tell you how excited I have been. My son was bragging to his work mates about his Dad and the ship I sailed on, and he went to the K page and saw me as a young man. That made two people proud yesterday. So, God bless you and all your efforts.
I just looked at the pics on your new Hawaii page. It reminded me of how sad it was for all the married guys to say goodbye. I was single, but it still tore me up to watch it. Of course, on the flip side, when we would arrive home after a cruise, all of us in Dress Whites, Ship in full dress with us manning the rails, I would be bursting with pride. I LOVED those days. Families waving, kids recognizing their dads, man, it was a beautiful thing.
Well gotta roll. Thanks again.     Rocky Marcellus     1/24/2004

I came upon the Kawishiwi site tonight.  I thought I would let you know who I am and where I am. I am impressed with the Kawishiwi web site.  I found it very interesting.
Gary Vander Velden     1/13/2004

I was looking at your web site for some historical information on the USS Kawishiwi & found your web site. I would to add 2 names to your list of living Vietnam vets. Please add Gerald Jost {Jerry} from Fond du Lac, WI and David Klister from Kaukana, WI. My dad was very happy I found this site & plans on looking at it very soon. And I would like to personally thank you for having this site. My daughter can now see & relive part of her grandfather's life thanks to you! KEEP UP THE GREAT WORK!!!!!!!!!!!!
 Rita Kennedy      1/13/2004

Hi Vern 
I was recently informed of the Kiwishiwi webpage by a fellow shipmate. I was onborad the Kiwishiwi from 71 to 73.  I really enjoyed going through the webpage although I was somewhat disappointed that my name was not listed on ship's roster for the 72 cruise book especially since I was the one who put the book together.  My name is Ray Serna.  I was in R division but I also did ship's photography.  I'm featured in page 102 of the 1972 cruise book. Also could add my name to your e-mailing list for any future information. 
Ray Serna    11/19/2003

Put me down for a book when it is ready, a signed one course !!!  Thanks for all the info on the ships. Good sites for me to visit in the wee hours of a good old rainy day.  I have 35 mm color prints and many 35 mm color slides of both the ship and ports o call in the 56- 57 era.  What do you need ???
Paul Ebeyer, Hassayampa    11/21/2003

I am one of the shipmates you sent the Oiler portfolio to on email and I forwarded to other shipmates I know. One of the shipmates asked me where you are from and where did you get my name.  I see from your information that you are originally from the Allegan area. Are you still located there? It is rewarding to know that someone is putting together a portfolio with the information of all the Oilers that were commissioned in the 50's. A lot of information I did not know as well as the shipmates that I know. Keep up the great work. 
Dick Mayhew, Hassayampa   11/22/2003

Hi Vern,
This is a terrific web site. Thank you so much for all your efforts. This must have taken a super effort on your part. I served on the "Hass" Jan 61-Sept 62. I was able to make our second reunion this past OCT. in Wickenburg, AZ. Again thanks for all your efforts.
Bill Miller, Hassayampa     11/21/2003

Hello Vern    I really like what you've done with your web page, especially the ship's drawings.  Where did you ever get those??!!?? 
Brad Bradfield, Mispillion     04/29/2004

Just found the web site. It really brings back memories seeing the photos. Didn’t see my name mentioned. I came on board in Newport RI in 1966 and made a cruise to the North Atlantic with NATO and had a liberty in Portsmith England. I was an electricians mate 3rd class.
Edward Rosenbaum, Mississinewa     11/03/2003

Hello Vern,  I was looking at the changes on your tanker site (very Nice) and thought I would let you know that the Missy also transited the Panama Canal  on her way to Oakland Calf. for decommissioning in 1976. 
Bruce Kromer, Mississinewa     11/21/2003

Vern, Thanks for the heads up on the web site changes, put me down for a copy of the book when you publish. Absolutely an excellent job on the web site.
Rich Jahr, Mississinewa     11/23/2003
Ahoy Vern; Your web site is great, I can tell you put a lot of time and care into it. Although many changes were made at the Great Lakes Naval Training Center between the time you were there and when I enlisted in 1973, it still brings back a lot of great memories. My barracks was located in the newest section of the base, Co. 333, Barracks 23, if my memory is correct, on the other side of the train tracks. We took a tour of the old section and I can't imagine living in those old drafty, cold barracks. Even the chow hall was fairly new when I was there, but I don't think the chow had improved at all over the years.
   While surfing your web site I saw your pictures of the Little Creek Amphib base. I also was stationed there working at BMU-2, in vehical maintenance, servicing 2 1/2 ton trucks, jeeps, pick-up trucks , and the ever famous Lark-5, aka 'The Duck'. We also worked with ACU-2 , training with the beach landing boats , 'Mike Boats', I think that's what they were called. I was there from Nov. 76 to Sept. 77. I'm sure a lot of things have changed on that base as well. If I was given the opportunity, I would do it all over again. Even as much as I complained about some of the crap we had to deal with, and people I had to work with, I really do miss it.
   I found a few pictures of the Missy, but most of them aren't in very good condition. I failed to preserve them as I should have. Over time, my memory has faded, and so have the pictures. If I send them to you, would you be able to put them on the web site? I don't have the equipment to do it myself.
   I retired in Dec. from the Air National Guard here in State College, PA. at the rank of E-7,  Master Sergeant. If I had stayed in the Navy I would have retired in 1993, probably as Chief PO, or higher. Oh well, who plans there life that far ahead. Well I need to get back to work. Just thought I'd share that with you. Thanks......
Daron Doty,  Mississinewa    01/05/2004

Vern, you've done what no one else has been able to do with the Stan Jones information/his song sung by famous singers/the links on Douglas, etc. I've been getting emails from people still in or originally from Douglas praising what you have done; each and everyone has told me to compliment you for your input, especially since you're not even from Douglas(they've told me you are now an honorary Douglas native). I even mailed a writer for the Douglas Dispatch, the local paper, and he was very interested. His name is Bruce Whetten at and he has contacted me by mail. I don't think anyone had done something like this in the detail you have , in reference to Stan Jones, and what started this rolling is  Stan's song you included in the background of the Navy recruitng video you sent me; I'm glad I remembered after I checked out the video/pics. Like I said, at first my whole attention was on the pics/video, but then after I turned the computer off is when I remembered the song, and told you about it. A girl from Douglas who is on my mailing list by the name of Terry Benson told me, after reading the articles and hearing the songs, that she had an aunt who at one time had dated Stan Jones, but later married someone else.
  What can I say, Vern, except that on behalf of many of us who are Douglas natives, and even some who moved to Douglas very young, thanks. Everyone is writing me about it, and I tell everyone it's because of your hard work that this was possible.
Hector Montano, Kawishiwi  04/05/2006

Vern::What a job...G R E A T..Love the work you have done.
Thank you and hope to see you at the next one...Wonderful job V ERN..couldn't have this without your input and dedication.  T H A N K S  Gilbert Mayo  Muskogee, Oklahoma   12/21/2007

Vern: I have always been amazed at all the work you have done for the Kawishiwi  page.  You  are so good at it. You need a rest.  You've been a good buddy .  Even at long distance.

Tom Sparkman, 09/15/2008


I just wanted to add my two cents. You really did a lot for the old Kawishiwi crews, provided a very interesting web site and a wonderful way to connect. Although I have only attended just the one reunion in San Francisco, I must say that was a lot of fun and provided a unique opportunity to see the old ship. Well done.

For me, keeping up with reunions is difficult since I served in so many different ships in my career. Each was special in its own right. Kawishiwi for me was a career builder although as a destroyer man I certainly did not think so when I received my orders. But good crews and good times often have a way of blending into something memorable. So it was for Kawishiwi. The same is true for the reunions and it was fun meeting new people through your fine efforts. I will never have the zeal you have for Navy Oilers; although I greatly admire your dedication to your research and the efforts you have made on their behalf. To me the Navy has always been about its people. When I look at the rusting hull of a platform in which I served, sure I am filled with nostalgia; but it is the memory of the people, all the crews with whom I have served which mark the memories of my own naval service. The same goes for you “new” crew members I have met along the way. While we did not physically serve together, it sure seems that way.

I am sorry to hear your health has been giving you some problems. Isn’t it amazing how we feel so young in our minds yet our bodies let us down? My father warned me of that eventuality many years ago. We get all these new maladies and the old ones seem harder to shake. Take care and take your medicine. We expect to see you at this for many years to come and I am glad you found a home for the web site.

All the best,                     Jim Barton, 09/15/2008 

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