The attendance for the February 2014 meeting was 65.

Opening Ceremonies: The meeting was called to order by Base Commander Ed Stank. A quorum was present and the meeting started at 1904. Following the Pledge of Allegiance, the Invocation and Tolling of the Boats lost in February was given by Base Chaplain Nick Nichols. The USSVI Creed was read by Base Vice-Commander Jerry Stout. Ed welcomed the members and guests to the meeting.

Introductions: The following were new attendees to Charleston Base meetings: ET1(SS) Mike Ciesieko, Qual Boat: USS Sand Lance SSN 660; MTC(SS)/CWO4 Alwyn M. Byrd, Qual Boat: USS John Marshall SSBN 611; MMC(SS)Charles Baylor, Qual Boat: USS Birmingham SSN 695.

Secretary: Base Secretary Rick Wise reported that the January meeting minutes had published in the newsletter ands on the base website. Nick Nichols made a motion to approve the January meeting minutes as published. The motion was seconded and carried on a voice vote.

Treasurer: Base Treasurer Steve Morawiec gave a report on the Charleston Base finances.

Vice Commander: Base Vice Commander Jerry Stout reminded the members that nominations could be made for the Secretary and Vice Commander positions that will be voted on at the May meeting. Ken Hutichison volunteered to be the Election Coordinator. As Special Events Coordinator, Jerry reminded the base of the Hunley-Housatonic Memorial Service at Sunrise Presbyterian Church on Sullivans Island on Monday, February 17. This will be the 150th anniversary of the attack. Information on all the events for this are on the base website. The Massing of the Colors will occur at The Citadel Chapel on March 2.

Chaplain and Webmaster: Base Chaplain and Webmaster Nick Nichols gave the following report: February Report:

* STCM(SS) Al Lammers departed on Eternal Patrol January 11th. Al’s memorial service will be held on Saturday, February 22nd at 1500 at the Goose Creek American Legion at 116 Howe Hall Rd. Muster time will be 1415. Uniform will be vest uniform no covers. The Legion, FRA, VFW and SUBVETS will be participating. More information will be sent via email next week.

* MMCS(SS) Ken Fuhr departed on Eternal Patrol February 2nd. He went into the hospital on January 13th when it was discovered he had Stage IV cancer. He was able to go home before passing away. The family would like to thank the SUBVETS for their assistance before, during and after the funeral. Palmetto Base supported Ken’s family a great deal also. Both bases provided Chaplains and pall bearers for the funeral. Palmetto Base also provided most of the food and sodas for the after funeral gathering and we would like to assist them with the cost. If you would like to donate there is a container on the SK table where you can donate a couple of dollars. All money collected will go to Palmetto Base.

* Lorene Burnett, Abe Jenkins’ daughter, passed away on January 29th in MS. As a reminder, Abe's wife, Gloria, passed away in December 2013. Lorene’s funeral was on February 8th.

* Danny Leonhardt spent most of January in the hospital. Fell and broke some ribs. Can’t get out and wife won’t let him drive. Got this report from Mike Emerson.

* Elizabeth Mullins, Moon’s wife, recently had some outpatient surgery.

* Ben McDonald results from his CAT scan were not good. He has cancer in his throat and the doctor has said more treatment would not be beneficial. Ben is able to swallow and talk but hospice has been called in to help. Shirley said that he loves to talk so if you would like to call that would be fine. Just know that he might be sleeping and you'd have to call back. Also visitors are very welcome.

* John Aycock, Homer Aycock’s son, passed away last week. His service was held in FL on February 8th. Homer was a COB on the James Madison and many of us know him. This report from Jim Williams.

* Margo O'Brien, wfe of MMCS(SS) Stan O’Brien, passed away on February 11th. Stan is not a SUBVET. Margo was an Ombudsman on the Tecumseh Gold when Stan was stationed there. This report from Charlie Hudson.

* Barbara Curtis, Ken’s wife, is getting over pneumonia and Ken is getting over the flu.

* Charlie Rook has pancreatic cancer and had his 4th of 26 radiation treatments today. He decided not to have any surgery. His doctor has given him a fairly good prognosis. Charlie said he would like to talk to any of you that would like to call.

* Pearl Hance, Art’s wife, is recovering from hip replacement last week.

* Clyde Peters is still in Mt. Pleasant Manor Nursing Home, 921 Bowman Rd, Rm 323. Visitors would be appreciated. His memory and abilities are getting worse.

Several follow-ups were made on those who’ve had surgery or illnesses in the last couple of months along with the base sending additional cards. If you know of shipmates or spouses from other bases who are having a difficult time, had surgery, etc. and would like for USSVI Charleston Base to send them a card please send their name and address to the Chaplain via email or phone call.

WEBMASTER REPORT: The website is being updated frequently. Keep the inputs coming and I’ll get them posted. There is a section on the website to announce boat reunions.

Membership: Membership Chairman Don Mook reported we now have 316 members. Eighteen 2013 members have been dropped for failing to pay 2014 dues.

Storekeeper: Base Storekeeper Ken Hutchison reported he still has calendars As Election Coordinator he reported he has two nominations for Base Vice Commander – Don Mook and Jerry Stout and that Rick Wise is running unopposed for Base Secretary.

Newsletter: Steve Moraweic reported that the electronic newsletter has been sent out. The printed newsletter will go out soon.

Veterans Affairs/ DAV: Ken Curtis started by asking for a show of hand of members who have Concealed Carry Permits. He pointed out that the bill recently signed by the Governor makes some changes and those members with permits should check out what has changed. Ken talked about the VA death benefits and recommended members have a VA Form 21-534 Application for Dependency and Indemnity Compensation, Death Pension and Accrued Benefits by a Surviving Spouse or Child (Including Death Compensation if Applicable) filled out for their dependents.

FRA: Larry Cox told the members the red tickets he had given out were for either a one year membership to the FRA or, if you are already a member, one steak dinner.

Scholarship: Chairman Julian Villegas reminded the base that he had Charleston Base Challenge Coins for sale at $12 each to support the Scholarship Fund. The new applications are available on-line. The deadline for applications is April 15th. The Scholarship Committee has an empty seat to be filled.

Submarine Veterans of World War II: Mike Emerson reminded the base that the next meeting is at Ryan’s in Summerville at 1130 on Thursday February 20. He also talked about the status of Lee Allison in Florida. Lee really misses us and will appreciate any calls or cards. His address and phone number are on the base website sailing list.

Clamagore Restoration and Maintenance Association: CRAMA Secretary Rick Wise reported has two paths we are pursuing: 1) to convince Patriots Point to turn over the Clamagore to CRAMA and 2) to raise the funds to restore the Clamagore when we get it. Nuclear Historian: Rick Carlson read the following portion of letter to the editor from Suzanne Flowers of North Charleston. Her father was a WWII veteran who was in charge of one of the USS Clamagore’s overhauls at Charleston Naval Shipyard.

“The modesty of my father’s generation stands in stark contrast to the tacky bragging of today.”

District Commander: Paul Viering reminded the base the SE Regional Conference will be held April 7 – 11 at Cary, NC. The Tarheel Base is running the event. There is a link on the website to get your reservation in. May 16 and 17 the North Carolina SubVets will be holding the WWII Memorial Ceremony on Moonshine Mountain, Burnsville, NC. National Elections are coming up. Look at the information on the issues and candidate before voting. Don’t just act like sheep. He also reminded the base that this July would be the 17th anniversary of the founding of Charleston Base.

Chief of the Boat: Rick Sparger pointed out the donation jar on the Base Storekeepers table. These donations are to share the cost with the Palmetto Base for the food and beverages at the reception following Ken Fuhr’s funeral. We still have no one volunteering to serve on the Recreation Committee. If no one steps up the Oyster Roast will be cancelled. The Hunley-USS Housatonic Memorial Service will be held at the Sunrise Presbyterian Church, Sullivans Island, SC at 7 pm. The uniform is the Charleston Tuxedo (Navy Blazer, khaki pants, light blue shirt, and submarine or dark tie). The USS Trout Reunion will be held in Mt. Pleasant, SC on 24-27 March.

Base Commander: Ed Stank thanked the members that showed up at the meeting despite the effects of the ice storm. Ed read a letter from Stratford High School thanking Charleston Base on having the WWII SubVets at the event at the school.

Old Business: Marty Sessler gave an update on the new float trailer. Since the repairs are taking so long we are looking into using the current float after some repairs have been made. The float will only be towed in parades in the low country area.

Rick Wise restated the motion that had been tabled at the last meeting on supporting the efforts of the USS Clamagore Restoration and Maintenance Association, Inc. (CRAMA) to save the Clamagore. The motion was amended to read USSVI – Charleston Base supports the efforts of the USS Clamagore SS-343 Restoration and Maintenance Association, Inc. (CRAMA) to save the Clamagore. A motion was made and seconded to accept the motion as amended. During the discussion base member Gary Williams pointed out that he believed that the Clamagore Veterans Association (CVA)had done nothing illegal and that their plan to use the money collected to place a memorial ashore near the position of the sunken Clamagore and the remainder as a scholarship fund for applicants related members was proper. Rick Wise pointed out that CRAMA was not asking for any money from Charleston Base or for Charleston Base approval of actions by the CRAMA Board of Directors. The motion was passed on a show of hands.

New Business: Base member Gary Williams made the following motion: That USSVI-Charleston Base to reimburse the Base Chaplain at a rate of $0.60 per mile for travel in the performance of his duties. The motion was seconded and passed on a show of hands (27 yea – 24 nay).

Good of the Order: Rodney McKanna recommended that if any calendars were left they will be raffled off using the depth charge tickets at the end of the meeting.

Depth Charge: The depth charge was won by Jim Williams. Following that the calendars were raffled off. Nick Nichols showed off a plaque made by base member Glenn Fleming. Information on Glenn’s business is on the base meeting minutes page of the newsletter. Charlie Hudson asked if any information was available about the Sub Ball. Ed is going to check with NNPS to se if we can get a special rate again. Gary Williams announced he will bring a painting of a submarine on the surface to the March meeting to action off to support the Scholarship Fund.

Meeting Adjourned: Following the benediction by Base Chaplain Nick Nichols, the Base Commander adjourned the meeting at 2022.

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