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July - August  2001

What A Great Reunion July 26-29, 2001 San Diego!!!
The 2001 reunion was a success! The numbers are in and we had over 160 attendees at the reunion!  The large turn out surprised everyone!  In searching the other Guided Missile Cruiser web sites, our first reunion was larger than any reunion that any of the other ships has ever had! USS England is the best even today!

There were dinners, a luau, folks trapped in an elevator and much more! Each night we had a good crowd with most attending the Saturday night banquet.  We had excellent speakers! ADM Henry H. Mauz Jr. USN (ret), CO of USS England from 1980 to 1982, RADM Hugh Webster USN (ret), CO of the ship from 1978 to 1980, CAPT Coenraad van der Schroeff USN (ret), CO of the ship from 1988 to 1990, CAPT Peter Gaskin USN (ret), the last CO of USS England, as well as former XO and Operations Officer, Chaplain Mark Allison, Chaplin of the ship from 1989 to 1992, and CWO4 George P. Evans USN (ret), Assistant Fire Control Officer and Fire Control Officer from 1977 until 1983,  all deserve a very special thank you for their informative, entertaining and inspirational messages.

To all of those who attended, thank you! The reunion was a great success because you showed up and created an event atmosphere that could be enjoyed by all! Seeing shipmates who'd not seen each other, many for decades, as they reunited, was very special!  The camaraderie, cooperation and team sprit that have always been a part of USS England were in full strength. A large number of attendees came to the Business Meeting on Saturday and plotted the future of USS England. There is obviously a great deal of interest in our collective future and there is no doubt it will be great!

The USS England Forum was retired on 02/03/07.

Please head over to the Web Forum and post your reunion stories and discuss the event. There are pictures from the event on the Reunion 2001 page. This was a great event and a huge success!

With that done, perhaps the long dormant Model Project will get attention once again!

Announcing USS England Reunion II - Summer 2003
During the 2001 reunion, we had a business meeting in which it was decided to hold the next reunion in San Diego again! This was the home port of USS England for much of her career and the preponderance of shipmates live on the west coast, which will ensure another successful event. This is very important until we find more shipmates so we can guarantee attendance in other locations for future reunions. To ensure we do have the numbers to support these events, all hands must get involved! Everyone go out and find your friends and lets get them in on this! We could easily have 320 attendees or more the next time around! To do that we need each of you to get out and find your friends and shipmates. Get them signed up at On Line Crew!!!!

How can you keep up on Details about out next reunion? Book mark the 2003 Reunion Web Page and ensure you are signed up as  On Line Crew!

Operation King!
Just before the reunion Operation King was announced! In 1944 Admiral Halsey himself expressed his desire that there always be an England when he sent a message in which he described the exploits of DE-635 as "a matter of great pride to the whole South Pacific Team." He continued to say, "May there all ways be an England. Well done and congratulations to all hands."

Soon after the Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral E. J. King promised "There'll always be an ENGLAND in the United States Navy." So where is she?

Out of responsibility to our ship, her history continues to this day and our efforts now may be the most important in regard to England history that we, the officers and crew of DLG/CG-22, have ever undertaken. We must return the name England to the seas. Details of the steps you can take to help make this happen can be found on the Operation King page.

A Commissioning Story
Dennis H. Vied
I am a graduate of the US Naval Academy Class of 1960. One of my classmates was ADM Hank Mauz.  I am a plank owner and I was the first Missile Officer.  I signed the first log entry as OOD when she was commissioned.  Actually, I ordered her to be placed in commission, upon the direction of Captain William Caspari. My able crew, under the direction of Ens. Jim Goudreau, Asst. Missile Officer, and Chief McKelvey, Missiles Chief, had prepared the show missiles, (Blue and Gold), for loading on the launchers fore and aft.  Fire Control gang, under the direction of my roommate, Lt. Pete Camp, Fire Control Officer, had draped the missile director antennae with circular red, white, and blue bunting.  The missile launchers and directors remained trained fore and aft, until the moment of commissioning.  (I don't remember for sure if it was piped or bugled; I think piped).  When directed by Capt. Caspari, I gave the order, the boatswain's mate passed the word that the ship was now in commission, and all together, the missiles shot out onto the launchers, then the launchers and directors trained 90 degrees toward the crowd on the pier.  Perhaps the quarterdeck watch, (and the crew below), were the only ones there who couldn't see it, but the "OOHs" and "AAHs"  from the crowd informed us that it was effective.  The England had come to life.  It was a proud and moving moment for us all.  What an honor to have been there! 

Where Are They Now?
This newsletter has a few biographies of our speakers from the reunion! These were to be included in the program but an error prevented their inclusion.

Admiral Hank Mauz  USN (Ret.)

Reprinted from our first newsletter (September 1999) "We moved to Pebble Beach and then I became involved in farming on a large scale in the San Joaquin Valley. That lasted about 3 years and I am now traveling for the government to various parts of the world, doing some 'board' work, serving on a couple of non-profit boards in this area, and tending to family business matters. We have a house in Colorado that we are now renovating and that takes us there a lot too. I am from Colorado and my family still lives in the Denver area."

Rear Admiral Hugh Webster USN (Ret.)

Born in Annapolis, Md., graduated USNA Class of 1955. Played in the Sugar Bowl on Navy Team Named Desire (Navy 21 - Ole Miss 0). Commanded three ships; USS REXBURG, PC-855, USS SOMERS, DDG-34, USS ENGLAND, CG-22. Served numerous tours in Pentegon (OP-NAV). Commanded COMNAVSURFGROUPWESTPAC / CTF 73 / CTF 75. Led CTF 75 to Quindoa, PRC in 1986. Retried in 1991 as Commander Operational Test & Evaluation Force. Lives in San Diego with his wife Peggy.

Captain Pete Gaskin USN (Ret.)

Captain Pete Gaskin, a native of New York City, was commissioned in 1966 through the NROTC program at the University of Pennsylvania. In 1974 he also received a Masters in Business Administration from Pennsylvania's Wharton School.

During his 30 years in the Navy he served at sea in Destroyers, Cruisers [3 tours on ENGLAND] , the Battleship NEW JERSEY, Cruiser/Destroyer and Carrier Battle Group staffs.   His command tours included USS MEYERKORD [FF 1058], USS ENGLAND [CG 22], Advanced Tactical Support Base, Phouc Xuyen, RVN and Military Sealift Command Far East, Yokohama Japan. Captain Gaskin retired in July 1999 and returned to the Point Loma area of San Diego where he resides with his wife Mimsie.

CWO4 George P. Evans USN (Ret.)

CWO4 George P. Evans (USN, Ret.) was born in Mount Carmel, LA on 13 JAN 1942. He is the son of Madie L. Evans and the late Charles P. Evans. He graduated from George Washington Carver High School in De Ridder, LA on 29 MAY 1959 and joined the Navy on 02 JUN 1959.He served as Fire Control Striker and Fire Control Technician in USS Harry E. Hubbard (DD-748), USS Bausell (DD-845), USS Coontz (DLG-9) and USS Reeves (DLG-24).He served as an instructor at Guided Missile System Training School at Mare Island, CA. While at Mare Island, he was promoted to FTMC in 1967 and Warrant Office (W-1) in 1968. CWO4 Evans served as Technical Assistant, Assistant Fire Control Officer, and Fire Control Officer in USS Harry E. Yarnell (DLG/CG-17), USS Long Beach (CGN-9), and USS England (CG-22).

He retired from active duty 01 FEB 1983 and lives in Cherry Hill, NJ.

Do You Want To be Famous?
A good place to start is right here on the USS England web site! Your best sea stories and memories and be a part of this newsletter! all you have to do is type them and e-mail them to: dennis@ussengland.net and they can appear in a future issue. It would sure help the effort here and is an easy way for you to contribute!