|Monday, June 11, 2001 at 20:28:00:
I sat here a few minutes ago opened a cold one and I hesitated, something was missing. A feeling I experienced for 3 days was gone. Something I had looked forward to for months was now over. The Bash was now history. I really don't know if I can adequately express this weekend meant to me. To have the privilege to sit and talk with someone who made war patrols in the 2nd world war, this never would have happened if not for the bash. I don't know if the chance would ever occur to be able to see or speak to a shipmate that I have not seen or spoken to in 29 years if not for the bash. To be able to reminisce with the greatest people on the face of the earth. How many chances does one get in a lifetime to do this.
This event has profoundly affected me. I now realize that I was a member of the very best and so very proud to have worn those silver dolphins. I have a sincere hope that somewhere, sometime, we can all get together again. On an individual note, Pep, great to meet you and the Mrs. Glad to see that I wasn't the only one with an opinion of the "guy" on the other one. Ken "Coyote nice blue corset" Krause you made my wife's day by taking her on that horse ride, thanks so very much. Howie Slusser, 29 yrs. and I can still remember the time on the Stimson, thanks buddy. Bob and Sissy Grant, you are the very best wonderful wonderful people. And now I know where I will get to the part where I will lose it.
Gary and Sue, in my 50 yrs., I have never ever met anyone so gracious. In an era of cynicism, you gave new meaning to the word friendship and caring. When we arrived Thursday night to bring more cards Sue's main concern was that we ate, with all that was about to happen, this tells you something doesn't it? And now to the big Kahuna Gary "The Cowboy" McLaughlin. I am at a total loss for words. To give so much of yourself to make others so happy overwhelms me. You give a new meaning to the word friendship.
This event certainly was a "Woodstock of sorts." Three days of bubblehead B/S more B/S and nothing but more B/S!!! Gary I salute you and thank you from Cathy and I for an unforgettable experience.
This truly is why submariners are a breed apart because of people like you, truly one class act individual, Thank you again