From the President's Desk - February 2019
Happy New Year Everyone! Here we are, almost 2 months into 2019 already. Where does the time go? It’s 2019! It’s a reunion year! So I’m going to get right to it.
It seems like it was just a short time ago that we were meeting aboard the Carnival Sensation and decided to change our reunion from every two years to every three years and well, here we are, three years later. I know you are all waiting anxiously for word of when and where the 2019 reunion is going to happen. Several months back, we came up with the when – third quarter of the year- assuming then that we could get access to the ship at some point in that timeframe. The where was and currently still is – in the Port Hueneme, CA. area. So far, we have not been able to get any kind of timeframe from the Navy on when the ship might be available as its schedule this year is apparently jam-packed. So it is possible if we want to include a ship visit that we might fall outside of that third quarter timeframe. We are keeping our fingers crossed that something happens soon but we’re not ready to hold our breath yet. I know the longer we wait to come up with a firm date, the harder it is for some of you to make plans to attend, but we want to try our utmost to be able to incorporate a ship visit with the reunion as everyone enjoys that and we do get our larger turnouts when a ship visit is involved. It only makes sense. It is who we are. It’s where many of us grew up and we want to visit it again to bring back those memories, good and bad, happy and sad. So we will wait a while longer to see if the Navy can give us a day to go aboard the old girl. Just so you know, they are trying to accommodate us but there is a list of things that must be done and then the “it would be nice to do this” list can be looked at. We’re in the “would be nice to do” list. So bear with us.
In other reunion news, keep in mind that to actively participate including voting or running for elected office, you need to be a current, donating member of the Association. It’s only February so there’s time to make your donations and maintain your eligibility to fully participate in the Association’s business.
As with reunions in the past, even though we do not yet have a time, date or place, the board is trying to come up with plans that we can implement quickly to best meet the needs of our members. This includes accommodations, meals, transportation as well as prizes and awards for members. We have not selected a grand prize yet, but we do have several ideas in mind. When we finalize our decisions, you’ll hear about it on our website or on the Facebook page. Keep in mind, all these things cost money and that money comes from donations made by our members.
I encourage all Association members to seriously consider standing for elected office or an appointed position. To keep this Association alive and viable, we need active members who want to participate in managing and guiding it.
As most of you know by now, last year we lost the first two Commanding Officers of the ship. Captain Sullivan and Captain Kaiss. Both passed within a short time of each other. The Association made donations to the Pearl Harbor Memorial Foundation in Captain Sullivan’s memory and the USS Missouri Memorial in Captain Kaiss’ memory. My wife and I were able to attend the services for Captain Sullivan in Hawaii as friends of the Sullivans and to represent the USS Paul F. Foster Association. It was an honor to be present and to provide some small commentary about Captain Sullivan and his time aboard the Foster and the funeral luncheon. Both men will be missed by our Association. It was, after all, Captain Sullivan who helped found this Association. He and Captain Kaiss touched many of our lives. We will keep them in our memories forever.
Finally, let me remind everyone that we have a new website and with that, a new member database. If you haven’t already done so, please go to the new website, log in and update and complete your information. It makes it much easier to maintain accurate membership counts and to contact members when the information is accurate and up to date. We still have entries that are incomplete or worse, appear to be “made up” and I don’t want to delete any more records yet, especially if they are actual members who failed to enter their real names or complete the registration forms.
With that everyone enjoy the rest of winter and the fast approaching spring. As soon as we hear anything from the Navy regarding the ship’s availability and set a date for the reunion, you will be notified.
USS PAUL F. FOSTER ASSOCIATION