IN REPLY REFER TO
23 October 1986
Dear BREWTON Family and Friends,
Greetings from the North Arabian Sea. Our deployment has been both challenging and interesting so far. For the challenges, in addition to the normal hard work, skill and good luck required to keep a ship running and an air detachment flying, we were challenged by the elements as we participated in the highly successful operations in the North Pacific with USS CARL VINSON. You may have read about us in the newspapers. For the interesting parts, we enjoyed short port visits in Sasebo, Japan and Singapore. Our visits to Subic Bay and Diego Garcia, while providing some rest were also busy, as we prepared the ship to go back to sea. It seems that maintaining BREWTON's fine reputation is a never ending task. Between Singapore and Diego Garcia, we crossed the equator and as required by traditional seagoing customs, we payed honor to King Neptune as we initiated those who had not made the passage before.
Since departing Pearl Harbor we have had quite a few new additions. At home, to LT Lee Smith and Jessie, Cassandra Lii, born August 29. To BMC Mike Oldham and Janet, Sabrina also born August 29. To FC3 John Meyers and Kathy, Christopher Charles born September 6, and to ET1 Ernest Roque and Evangeline, Gerald born October 2. Congratulations to the proud parents.
Onboard, we have LT Don Eberly as our new Chief Engineer. Other new additions include ENS Jim Mirabile, BTCS Bob Webb, STGC Bob Gibbons, EM1 James Hollis, MM2 Mark Doinoff, MM3 Michael Day, ET3 Jaime Deleon, SH3 Larry Francis, STG3 John Smigel, OS3 John Warren, BTFN Daryl Turner and BTFN Wayne Sinclair. Welcome aboard to all our new personnel.
Since departure, I had the pleasure of presenting the Navy Achievement Medal to HMC "Doc" Cajulis for his outstanding efforts in preparing the Medical Department for deployment. I also had the pleasure of announcing that DK1 Dave Tackett is our Senior Sailor of the Quarter and RM3 Ken Pernsley is our Junior Sailor of the Quarter. Congratulations to each of them.
I received a message from the Fleet Commander a few days ago reporting that increasing numbers of CHAMPUS claims for dependents, particularly under the age of 10, are being denied due to non-enrollment in the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS). You can verify DEERS enrollment status by calling any of these toll free numbers: Hawaii 800-527-5602, California 800-334-4162, other CONUS 800-538-9552. If you and your family are eligible, I would ask you to verify your enrollment and let us know if there is a problem so that we can take care of it as soon as possible.
As to our return date from deployment, I am sure that many of you may have heard of the possibility we may be getting back a few days later than we had originally planned. A final decision on our return date has not been made and probably will not be made for a matter of weeks or months. Let me assure you that if we are delayed it will be because BREWTON is required in support of national defense and we will be home as soon as we can.
Attached is our command newsletter. I hope you enjoy it.
P. D. MALLETT
04 October 1986
WA Division: Upon leaving berth, M-3 on 12 August, the ASW Division, led by LTJG Hess, started a fast and furious transit. From a quick run to NAVMAG LLL, additional weapons were transferred onboard by the ASROC Handling Team led by GMT1 Scott, GMT2 White, STG1 Evans and STG3 French. Upon completion of the unload, BREWTON transited to Kauai, where an ASW firing exercise was conducted. BREWTON's ASW Team, headed by STG1 Cox, STG1 Lewis, STG1 Harris, STG2 Kelly, with superb coordination from CIC personnel, successfully tracked and fired two exercise weapons at an underwater mini-mobile target. Both exercise firings, one an ASROC torpedo, the other a surface tube torpedo were evaluated as successes. BREWTON's Sonar Team then readied themselves for ASW OPS with USS OUELLET, and for the transit north. The "Tail Gang", who operate and maintain the ship's Towed Array Sonar System, logged many ours of tail wet time, producing excellent performance throughout the transit. Due to the hard work of STG2 Kelly, STG2 Landrum, STG3 Fisher and STG3 Neilson the ship's AN/SQR-18A Towed Array Sonar was always ready for the challenge at hand. An active sonar exercise, conducted in coordination with USS MARVIN SHIELDS off Subic Bay, R.P. was a tremendous success. BREWTON conducted numerous simulated attacks on an exercise submarine and was credited with a constructive "kill" of that unit. The high point of the cruise for WA Division was the receipt of the ASW "A" located on the ASROC launcher. So far, WESTPAC "86" has proven to be a successful and prolific time for WA Division. With its 100% equipment up time, the ST's, GMT's, and TM's have lived up to BREWTON's motto of DEDICATED, DETERMINED and PREPARED.
WG Division Led by LTJG James Baker, the Gunnery Division achieved a number of noteworthy achievements during the early part of WESTPAC "86". The Close-in-Weapons System crew, led by FC2 Vroom and FC3 Moore, completed a successful firing prior to our first port call in Sasebo, Japan. FC2 Michael Farug continued his stellar performance by achieving his Enlisted Surface Warfare Specialist pin while enroute Sasebo, Japan just prior to transfer. FC1 Jones has taken his place as workcenter supervisor for the MK 68 Gun Fire Control System. The high point for BREWTON's gunnery team came during Naval Gunfire Support operations at Tabones Range, R.P. In a period of two days BREWTON fired 170 rounds of 5" ammunition from her forward gun mount. The skies above Tabones Village were illuminated by the flares from BREWTON's 5" gun while conducting continuous illumination exercises which were part of the qualifications. For the first time in three years Bubba Bee successfully completed the qualifications for NGFS, a result of efforts by the Gun Team headed by GMGC Nestervich, GMG1 Patashsny, GMG2 Collins, GMG2 McDaniel, GMG3 Hamilton, GMGSN Hatch, and GMGSA Castillo. The FC's also worked hard during this exercise, punching in numbers to BREWTON's fire control computer with unerring accuracy and skill. A hearty BZ to FCCM Culla, FC1 Jones, FC2 Faruq, FC2 Dares and a host of others for a job well done. Back in the homefront, FC3 Meyer and his wife Cathy became proud parents of a bouncing baby boy. Congratulations! WESTPAC 86 has proven to be a busy time for WG Division and is shaping up to test the mettle of both the FC's and GMG's in the future. WG Division is striving hard to make this competitive cycle the one in which the Gunnery "E" is regained.
WD Division: From the initial transit to the recent Singapore port visit, WD Division has continued to excel in all areas. To date, numerous refuelings at sea, CONREPs and an AMMO onload have been conducted efficiently, professionally, and with safety foremost in mind. Thanks to the dedicated leadership and expertise of BM2 Craddock, BM2 Anderson, SA Johnson, SN Blazynski, BM3 Landrum, and BM3 King, refuelings at sea have gone like clockwork. BMC Oldham and his wife Jenny gave birth to a beautiful baby girl on 29 August! Congratulations from all on Bubba Bee! BM2 Anderson and LT Cone departed while inport Subic Bay. Fair winds and following seas! LTJG Rumley has relieved as 1st LT.
WD Division has continually put forth during this WESTPAC. The entire paintout of the ship prior to entry into Sasebo, Japan was an impressive acheivement during an especially inclement NorthPac transit. An ammunition replenishment at sea was smoothly conducted with USS FLINT under the keen auspices of BMC Oldham. SN Cunningham, SR Goodman, and SN Shanks were solid, steady performers during this evolution. As leader of the magazine crew, BM3 Landrum, along with a host of other deck seamen, were an integral part of the success of the Naval Gunfire Support exercise conducted at Tabones Gunfire Range in the Philippines. Whether it is UNREPS, rearming at sea, VERTREPs, or gunnery exercises, the Deck Division is always able to fill the task at hand!
The Administration/Navigation Department continues to keep us "on track" in both the "paper" and real world.
PNC Caoile, YN1 Veasley, and PNSN Simons have been very busy keeping the paper flowing to transfer personnel and to check in new personnel to the Bubba Bee. Each port sees old friends leaving and new ones arriving.
HMC Cajulis and HM3 Marquez have been putting in a lot of overtime setting up appointments for the crew and running sick call. They're keeping everyone in "tip-top" shape.
The Quartermaster crew of QM1 Richmond, QM2 Ross, QM2 Murgotten, QM3 Wolke, and QMSN Brown have kept us on our course to a variety of places. They've made it "smooth sailing" all the way. QM2 Murgotten has been authorized conversion to the "PR" rating.
The Command Master Chief, PNCM Riley and the Command Career Counselor, NC1 Wagoner have been busy with Project Handclasp and Operation Schoolhouse in Sasebo, Japan and Subic Bay, R.P., both projects were highly successful and much appreciated.
Finally, MA1 Holcomb has kept us all in proper decorum and PCSN Brocksieck moves the mail we all love to see from you back in the Hawaiian Homefront.
Supply Department - WESTPAC "86"
With mixed emotions, we waved farewell to our families and friends, lingering on deck until eye contact was no longer possible. The feeling of hurting, longing, and missing our homes and loved ones was most noticeable. However, there was a bit of excitement in each of us. We were heading out to do what we have been trained to do--keep ships at sea. Were we ready? Could we handle it? Did we bring enough food? What did we forget? A bit of pleasant anticipation also filled most of us as we looked forward to visiting foreign shores. What can I buy? Are the people friendly? Do they speak English? Will we have enough time to see everything? Do they have good beer? The date, August 12, seems like ages ago, and Pearl Harbor, a half a world away.
We were abruptly snapped out of our reverie when one of our favorite words, "moored" bellowed out over the speakers. What? How could it be? We scrambled top side only to find that our first port visit looked strikingly familiar--could have passed for Hawaii anyday. In fact it was Hawaii, West Loch to be exact. We needed one more bullet. A forty minute pier visit, and we were off again. Back to our dreams, can't remember where I was, might as well do some work. "Flight Quarters." Is that all there is?
Finally, blue water, unobstructed horizon--time to get caught up and organized. Blue team, gold team, foul weather, after shower, darken ship, more flight quarters, inventory, breakouts, low visibility, cash checks (where are they to spend it?), paint, tiger team in torp two, stock replenishment--all that and the boss wants me to enjoy the deployment and do something for myself? What a dreamer! All that ocean and we were not alone. The Russians put in an appearance showing their cruisers, aircraft, intelligence ships, and even surfaced in one of their subs just to get a look at us.
Meal to meal, day to day, we made it to Sasebo, Japan. It's Labor Day, September 1st, will everything be closed? Hardly. "Moored." I lost another anchor pool. Navy exchanges, slot machines in the clubs, cold Kirin beer in big bottles--MS1 Fabay and MS1 Geslani are quite content. But is there anything off base? One guided tour took SK2 Banas, SH2 Horetsky, and OS2 Angel to Nagasaki, the site of one atomic bomb blast which convinced Japan to end their war in the Pacific. Also including a Chinese temple and cable car ride to 11,000 feet overlooking the city, the tour was informative and emotional. They prayer for Peace monument was most impressive. Do Japanese visitors to Hawaii have the same feeling when they visit the USS ARIZONA Memorial? Another tour took MS1 Grady and others through the countryside to Noritake where fine china is produced. MS2 Kimble was impressed with the culture, but is looking forward to returning home.
Athletic competition between units of the battle group also provided an opportunity to expend some energy. The USS BREWTON basketball team was runner up in the championship tournament. Under MS1 Grady's leadership, the team advanced to the finals. However, they dropped the title game to a disciplined team from the USS FLINT 59-48. For the harriers in the battle group, there was a 5,000 meter run through the base. Again USS BREWTON was well represented as DKSN Johnson and LT Hewett finished the course with respectable times.
On to Subic Bay, a working port visit, where Supply Department was quite busy loading stores, provisions, and arranging contracting labor to scrub the bilges and flight deck, and retile the crew's lounge. SKCS Alegre served as an advance party and made things happen. MSCS Delacruz, SH2 Isidro, SK2 Banas and others enjoyed spending time with family and friends at places like San Narciso, Zambales, Baloy Beach, Grande Island, Port Santiago, and Manila. SH3 Knight, ENS Peterson, and LT Hewett enjoyed an afternoon of water skiing at NAS CUBI POINT. To support the local community, MS1 Grady and SH3 Knight volunteered some of their free time to paint classrooms for the Operation School House Program.
That pretty much sums up our port visits, but you may be wondering, "What do you guys do all day at sea?" Well, for starters, Supply Department serves nearly 1,000 meals, gives over 30 haircuts, sells 25 cases of sodas daily, pays the crew twice a month, and orders parts to repair equipment. Several sailors are taking classes for college credit--including MS1 Grady, MSSN Bare, DKSN Johnson, MS3 Jones, and SH2 Horetsky. To do something for ourselves, we started daily exercise class on the flight deck. SK3 Williams is the super star having lost much weight and several inches. The rest of us are seeing some improvement. Also, we write lots of letters. Hope you have enjoyed them. We enjoy your cards and letters. In fact, our second and third favorite words are "mail call." DK1 Tackett and MSSN Doebler were nominated as Sailors of the Quarter. The board selected DK1 Tackett, and MSSN Doebler was runner up in his category. MS2 Kimble was named Mess Management Specialist of the Quarter, and OSSN Snead was Food Service Attendant of the Month of August. Congratulations are in order for those fine sailors. More in Chapter II.
Since departing Pearl Harbor in August 86 for WESTPAC 86-87, OI Division has accomplished many missions in both professional and recreational areas. The OS team completed Naval Gunfire Support Qualification with OS2 Fred Bustin, OS3 John Sabatini, and OS2 Robbie Ferguson providing the "OS" knowledge needed to complete this task. Congratulations are in order to OS1 Howard Hall for his final qualification as CIC Watch Officer, OS1 Bill Stevens for receiving his Good Conduct Medal, and OS3 Huey McCauley and OS3 Vince Strenk for receiving Letters of Appreciation for their work with Hawaii Special Olympics. The Electronic Warfare (EW) gang is comprised of ISC(SW) David Murdock, acting as EW Officer and LCPO; EW1 Jim Hollenger, LPO; EW2 Gabe Flores, Shift Sup; EW2 Wroblewski, Shift Sup; EW2 Claggett, Training PO; EW3 Brown, WLR-1 Tech and TAD from USS SAMPLE; EW3 Hutton, Pub PO; EWSN "J.D." Inman, SLQ-32 Operator and DC Maint Man; and EWSN Davis, SLQ-32 from USS STRAUSS. Operationally the EW gang has received several "ATTABOYS" from the Battle Group EW Commander for their contributions to BG "C's" Electronic Warfare posture. The "OI" gang also supplies 50% of the starting lineup for the Bubba Bee Softball team not including our special Scorekeeper who unfortunately did not make the trip! OS1 Bill Stevens, OS1 Guy Bradley, OS3 Pat Therrien, OS1 Howard Hall, and OS3 Vince Strenk were integral parts of the team taking 2nd place honors in the Battle Group "C" Softball Tournament held during the port visit at Sasebo, Japan. After our enjoyable port visits at Japan, Subic Bay, and Singapore, OI Division and the Bubba Bee are on their way to the Indian Ocean in search of more professional and recreational goals to meet and surpass! OI Division wishes all at home - "Happy Holidays!"
OC division had a change of Division Officers in September. LTJG McDuffee took over as Communications Officer for LTJG Rumley. LTJG McDuffee and LTJG Rumley both earned their Surface Warfare Qualifications during the month of August.
RMC Ritter, assisted by RM1 Worley, RM1 Warren, and RM2 Watts, supervised the Radiomen as they assumed relay ship duties for USS MARVIN SHIELDS and USS GARY. The Radiomen did the work of three ships with ease! BREWTON's Radiomen include: RMC Ritter, RM1 Worley, RM1 Warren, RM2 Watts, RM3 Kitchings, RM3 Cato, RM3 Pernsley, RMSN Baker, RMSN Foster, RMSA Burkhart.
RM1 Worley volunteered his time for "Operation Schoolhouse" during BREWTON's port visit to Subic Bay, R.P. RM1 Worley and other members of BREWTON painted classrooms at Olongapo Elementary School. SM1 Dupont and RM1 Warren were members of the tropyy winning softball team in Sasebo. The team was first runners up in the Sasebo tournament. The Signalmen have been working hard underway and enjoying their liberty inport by shopping and sightseeing. BREWTON's Signal Gang includes SM1 Dupont, SM2 Darnell, and SM2 Drexler.
The Radiomen of BREWTON continue to maintain the highest state of communications readiness possible. All members of the division are significant contributors to this high state of readiness.
OE Division has maintained BREWTON's navigational, radar and communications systems in the highest state of operational readiness. The electronic maintenance and repair team, led by ETCS Jenkins, ETC Cress, and ET1 Roque, have minimized equipment down time with the assistance of a crack repair team and forehanded predeployment preparation. In addition to maintaining equipment, ET1 Roque, ET2 Ruth, ET3 Gibbs, ET3 Rehders, ET3 Deleon, ET3 Carion, and ETSN Schulz refurbished the crews lounge with new bench seats, paint job and floor tiling. The ship's SITE TV system operated by ETCS Jenkins, ETC Cress and ETSN Schulz provides the crew with entertainment and training both inport and underway.
Time flies when you are having fun, therefore we must be having fun because it seems like we just left Hawaii. We had a short run in with some cold weather and rough seas while passing Alaskan country and we noticed AMS1 Terry Graham, AE1 Tom Elliott and AX2 Derrick Mahoney were particularly moved by it.
Our cruise to Japan was eventful. Mother Nature kept our flight schedule from ever materializing but Easyrider 55 is truly coming alive. We look like a team, working hard and sometimes playing harder. Japan offered several unique tours, one being Nagasaki, which AE3 Kenny Hicks, AW1 Jeff Loman, AX2 J.D. Jones and AMS2 Chuck Riese took full advantage of.
With the cruise from Hawaii to Japan behind us, the longest at sea period from here on is about sixteen days. The Philippines turned out to be a welcome stop for the men of Det-5. The American dollar goes a long way and the workers at CUBI Point, NAS were extremely efficient and trustworthy. AW3 Dave Westfall, AD2 Carl Thunelius and AZ2 Bruce Deshields seemed to enjoy meeting the Det's friend San Miguel. AD2 Teofilo Delmendo got a chance to see his loved one just as we all anxiously await seeing ours.
Singapore was a neat city, extremely clean and full of wonderful shopping opportunities. The Det polished the art of bartering and were soon back to sea bound for the Equator and Diego Garcia.
B Division's time has been hard underway with the work and the heat of the Fireroom; yet maintained the plant in top condition. New and welcome additions to the division have been BTCS Robert L. Webb, BTFA Jeffrey Erwin Puckett and BTFA Wayne Sinclair. BT1 Barry Burnett and BT1 Raymond Ramirez have taken over as Oil Kings on board and continue to expand their abilities. Congratulations to BT1 Antonio Tibayan, BT2 Robert Reid, BT1 Steven Carlson, and BT3 Curtis Hill for becoming top watch qualified, and BT2 Howard Mahuela in becoming "Turn-To" Petty Officer. With BT3 Kevin Simmons as the new Supply Petty Officer for the division, new strides have been made in keeping the division supplied with all its needs.