Close Navigation ×
Perch Base Event Photos

Upcoming Events

Eternal Patrol

The "MidWatch"
Arizona's Silent Service Memorial

Arizona's Silent Service Memorial.

Meeting Minutes


Perch Base Officers

Base Awards


About Perch Base

USS Perch War Patrols

Flash Traffic

SubVet Application

Eagle Scout Program

Base Newsletters


Useful Base
Documents and Forms.

Docs & Forms
Board of Dir. Login
☰ Nav Menu
Our Perch Base logo

Arizona Submarine Veterans
Perch Base
Phoenix, AZ
United States Submariners

USSVI logo

Click on the logo or these words to go to the United States Submariners home page.

Upcoming Events (Click Link For More Details)
2023 USS Arizona Legacy Foundation Photos

The USS Arizona Legacy Foundation supports the commissioning of the fourth U.S. Navy vessel in American history to bear the name Arizona, our vision is to honor, expand, and nurture the memory of the USS Arizona battleship BB-39 while forging the future legacy of the USS Arizona Virginia-class fast attack submarine SSN-803.
The photo above shows our Perch Base Life Member & Treasurer, Joe Trotter, giving a presentation to 4th graders at the Islands Elementary school library in Gilbert with Maura Mackowski. Maura, who holds a Ph.D. in history, is a research historian currently residing in Gilbert, Arizona. Among other books, Maura authored the book Life in Space
This was sponsored by the Gilbert, Arizona Veterans Advisory Board who is making presentations at many local schools.

Veterans Crisis Line

Are you a Veteran in crisis or concerned about one?
Connect with the Veterans Crisis Line to reach caring, qualified responders with the Department of Veterans Affairs. Many of them are Veterans themselves. It is confidential and available every day, 24/7.
Click on the picture, above, to go to the VETERANS CRISIS LINE.

USS Capelin

Lest we forget to perpetuate the memory of our shipmates who gave their lives in the pursuit of their duties while serving their country. . .
80 years ago, on Dec. 2, 1943, the USS Capelin (SS‑289), sailed off into history on her final and eternal patrol.
Japanese records studied after the war listed an attack on a supposed United States submarine on 23 November, off Kaoe Bay, Halmahera. Evidence of an actual contact was slight, and the Japanese state that this attack was broken off. Enemy minefields are now known to have been placed in various positions along the north coast of Sulawesi (Celebes) in Capelin's area, and she may have been lost because of a mine explosion. Gone without a trace, with all her crew, Capelin remains in the list of ships lost without a known cause.
76 men were lost.
Your Brothers of the 'Phin Have the Watch.
Fair Winds and Following Seas, Shipmates.

Eternal Patrol Dolphins

Visit the Perch Base Eternal Patrol page.

2023 Phoenix Veterans Day Photos

Twenty three Perch Base members and family took the USS Phoenix float to the 27th Annual Phoenix Veterans Day Parade presented by the non-profit Honoring America’s Veterans (HAV) on November 11th, 2023.
We staged the float at the Firestone Complete Auto Care at 241 W Osborn Rd (Thanks for letting us use your store lot) and then rode the float to the parade starting point.
This year’s parade theme was "Never Forget, Forever Honor."
Organizers anticipated 45,000 spectators along the parade route. Seven Veteran Grand Marshals, represented each era of military service from World War II to Afghanistan.
View more pictures HERE.

2023 Sierra Verde Elementary Veteran Appreciation Photos

Perch Base took the USS Phoenix float to the Sierra Verde Elementary School for a static display on Thursday, November 9, 2023.
Sierra Verde, a Science, Technology, Engineering And Math (STEAM) school, conducted a Veterans Appreciation Day program.
They fed us breakfast then held an assembly to show their appreciation for Veterans and their patriotism. They really treated us like VIPs!
View more pictures HERE.

November 2023 USAA 5K Run photos

Seven Perch Base Submarine Veterans (USSVI) set up a static display of the USS Phoenix (SSN-702) float and several tables at the USAA 5K Run in Phoenix, AZ, on November 4, 2023. The USS Phoenix (SSN-702) float was on the 5K running course and the display tables were at the starting point, along with other veteran organizations and causes.
The photo shows Missile Tech (Carl Miner) at work. Missile Tech's hammer is not visible in the photo.
See more pictures and discussion HERE.

Nancy Nelson

Eight Perch Base members and family attended the Memorial Service for Nancy Nelson. Nancy, who was a Perch Base SubVette, was the wife of Perch Base Holland Club Member Jim (Nellie) Nelson who previously departed on Eternal Patrol on August 15, 2020.
Our condolences to her son Brent, who is also a Qualified Submariner, and the rest of the family.
Nancy was proud of the fact that she was the daughter of a Submariner, wife of a Submariner, sister of a Submariner, and mother of a Submariner.
Jim (Nellie) was our Perch Base Chief of the Boat (COB) in 2001, the Base Storekeeper from 2003 to 2008, and was awarded Perch Base Sailor of the Year Award in 2007.
See more pictures HERE.

Nikki Stratton at USS Arizona Keel Laying ceremony

The USS Arizona Legacy Foundation is looking for veterans and community volunteers to make Pearl Harbor Day presentations in valley schools the first week of December.
We will provide the presentation, script, training, and scheduling. We ask that you bring your energy and patriotism.
Please contact Tanya Wheeless with the USS Arizona Legacy Foundation if you’re interested in learning more about volunteering, or if you have a school or classroom that might be interested in receiving a presentation.

Money Bag

It’s time again to appeal to our members. This is our yearly Membership Drive in which we ask for dues and donations. As you know Perch Base relies on dues and donations to support its day-to-day duties and ongoing activities throughout the year. Dues alone will not cover the expenses involved. All members are encouraged to support our base with a generous donation.
You may also wish to donate to the Perch Base Foundation. This is how we support the scholarships that we give out each year to qualified students. It also supports and helps offset what we charge for other base activities such as our Awards Banquet.
Please make your checks out to: Arizona Submarine Veterans – Perch Base – USSVI. Only one check is required but please make a note on the memo field if your donation is for the Perch Foundation. Otherwise, any amount not specified for the Foundation will go to Perch Base to support its day-to-day duties.
You can bring your cash, check or credit card to one of our monthly meetings or you can mail a check to Chuck Luna, our Membership Chairperson. If you have any questions, please contact Chuck at
Thanks for your continued support.

Lt. Wayne Anton "Brad" Braastad, USN (ret)

Perch Base Holland Club Member and Life Member Lt. Wayne Anton "Brad" Braastad, USN (Retired) passed away September 24, 2023, at the age of 101. Our condolences to Brad's wife, Stella, and children, Barbara, Wayne, Marilyn and Ruthie.
Born in Minneapolis, Minn on July 7, 1922, Brad was a deeply religious man, husband, father and WWII naval leader.
Although a resident of Tucson, AZ, Brad became a member of Perch Base in Phoenix, AZ, in our early years, then chartered the Tucson Base USSVI and was the first Tucson Base Commander on January 1, 2004.
Services have been held.
Read more and see more pictures HERE.
Your Brothers of the 'Phin Have the Watch.
Fair Winds and Following Seas, Shipmate.

Eternal Patrol Dolphins

Current Newsletter

EXTRA, EXTRA! Read all about it!
The new MidWatch newsletter is published. Click HERE to read the new issue.

September 2023 Carlton Clarke model photos


Perch Base Submarine Veterans (USSVI) member Carlton Clarke created an awesome model of the USS Nautilus (SSN-571) that was placed on display during the Awards Ceremony at the 2023 USSVI National Convention in Tucson, AZ.
See more photos of Carlton's model HERE.

2023 USSVI National Convention photos

August 28 - September 2, 2023
About 35 Perch Base Submarine Veterans and family members attended the 2023 USSVI National Convention in Tucson, AZ. As co-sponsors with the Tucson Base, we not only attended, but participated in planning and staffing support.
The photo, above shows Jan & Vic VanHorn leading a line dancing instruction session. See more photos and activities HERE.
In addition to these photos on our base webpage, the Convention Committee has posted additional photos at this LINK. It is unclear how long these additional photos will remain available on the link.

Thanks to Perch Base Life Member Glenn Posniack who pointed out the availability of a little known ASU scholarship at our August monthly meeting. Glenn discussed the Spouses of Military Veterans Tuition Scholarship. This award ensures tuition and fees are covered for ASU students who are pursuing an undergraduate degree and are married to an honorably discharged veteran of the United States Armed Forces.
Read more about this scholarship from the Pat Tillman Veterans Center on the ASU Website HERE.

August 2023 Karen Emmett Memorial Service

Our condolences to Life Member, Holland Club Member and Past Base Commander Chuck Emmett. Chuck's wife, Karen, passed away on July 2, 2023.
Her memorial service was held at the Salvation Army Center Chapel in Surprise, AZ.
View more details and pictures HERE.

July 2023 Prescott Parade Photos

Perch Base took the USS Phoenix float up to Prescott, Arizona on July 1st, 2023, for the Prescott Frontier Days® Parade. The parade had many entries and a very large crowd to watch the parade. We were in the parade with Gudgeon Base. Tucson Base also was there with their USS Tucson (SSN-770) submarine float. Members and family rode or walked in the parade from the 3 bases!
As shown in the photo, Perch Base member Doc Dawkins towed our USS Phoenix (SSN-702) float with his patriotic truck.
Also shown in this photo is Carl Miner who walked the entire parade route in his dress blues uniform!
The 2023 Parade Theme was "DANCES WITH BULLS."
After the parade, we had a BBQ lunch at Sherry and Tom Warner's home in Prescott Valley.
View more event pictures HERE.

Emil Joseph Schoonejans, TM2(SS)

WWII Veteran Emil Joseph Schoonejans, TM2(SS) ETERNAL PATROL
World War 2 submarine veteran, Holland Club member and Perch Base Life member Emil Joseph Schoonejans passed onto Eternal Patrol June 1, 2023, at age 98. Our condolences to his children Lynn, Laura and Mitch, and grandchild Coral (Jon) Sololowski.
Emil was born February 24, 1925, in West Hoboken, New Jersey. He joined the U.S. Navy in 1943 at age 16, and immediately went to work on submarine relief crews. He was later assigned as crew on the USS Burrfish (SS‑312) and earned the War Patrol medal for participation in the Burrfish's 4th, 5th and 6th War Patrols in the South Pacific. He returned to Pearl Harbor from the Burrfish's final War Patrol and then rode the Burrfish to Portsmouth Navy Yard for a major overhaul, arriving June 19. 1945.
Emil then left the Navy on February 1, 1946.
Read more and see more pictures, including a video interview with Emil, HERE.
Your Brothers of the 'Phin Have the Watch.
Fair Winds and Following Seas, Shipmate.

Eternal Patrol Dolphins

June 2018 Perch Base Birthday Photos

Then USSVI National Commander Charles Marin, presents the Perch Base its Charter to Jim Newman and Frank Rumbaugh -- Commander and Vice Commander -- of the Base on Sept. 23, 1995. The date of the charter, and Base "birthday," is June 20, 1995.

May 2023 Memorial Day Photos

Perch Base USSVI participated in the Memorial Day Ceremonies at the National Cemetery of Arizona, including Tolling of the Boats, on Monday, May 29, 2023.
Carl Miner and Dan Marks placed the wreaths for the Submarine Veterans of WW2 and the Perch Base Submarine Veterans at the Memorial Day ceremony. Governor Joy and Howard Doyle conducted the Tolling of the Boats ceremony. The following photos are from the both the Memorial Day Ceremony and the Tolling of the Boats.
View more details and pictures HERE.

USSVI logo

The United States Submarine Veterans, Inc., USSVI, was chartered 59 years ago on May 24, 1964.

Boat Sponsorship Program patch

The purpose of the Boat Sponsorship Program (BSP) is to make the active duty submarine force members aware of USSVI and provide them with information about our activities through sponsorship of the American Submariner to the various Submarine related organizations. After all, these force members represent the future core membership of USSVI.
Perch Base is a sponsor, but did you know that individual members may sponsor each Fast Attack Submarine and/or each crew of the Boomers? Magazines are also sent to VA hospitals, NROTC units, schools and other places. The cost is $30 per year for a total of 12 magazines (three each of the four annual volumes.)
Our Perch Base Holland Club & Life Member Jack Messersmith is the USSVI BSP Program Manager. Let’s make Jack proud. Check your copy of the American Submariner to sign up for the program.

New Facebook Page

Come and visit, LIKE and FOLLOW our new Facebook Page, USSVI Perch Base Arizona.
Building a successful Social Media network for any organization is no longer a "we’ll think about it" topic. Today, it is a MUST DO for all nonprofit organizations, including United States Submarine Veterans, Inc. (USSVI) and its Bases. It is critical if we want to expand our membership growth and communicate our unique mission story in an effective and cost-effective manner.

We Trained For This Photo

With all the recent activity and cancellations as a result of the Corona Virus, this speaks for itself!

Membership map

The image, above, shows that we have members all over metropolitan Phoenix. Left-click on the image for a larger view. If you are a Perch Base member and would like to consider carpooling, you are willing to pickup another member, or you need a ride to meetings or events, send an email to the webmaster at
The Board of Directors will attempt to match you with another nearby member who has similarly asked to carpool, or is willing to pickup another member. The Board will then provide the name, email, and phone number to the interested members that can then get in touch with each other to make specific arrangements. We are not publicly posting names or personal information to maintain privacy.
Keep in mind that if you wait until the last minute to request a match-up for a particular event, we may not be able to respond in time.

Map to Dillon's Restaurant

We meet the second Saturday of every month at 1200 hours (noon if you’ve been out a while) at Dillon's Restaurant, 20585 North 59th Ave, Glendale, AZ 85308-6821 (Left-click address, or the map above, for a Google map to Dillon's.) Come at 1100 for time to "socialize."
NOTE: Check our SAILING ORDERS page before "dropping in" on a meeting!

USS Finback rescuing George H.W. Bush USS Finback rescuing George H.W. Bush

In the upper picture, above, the crew of the USS Finback (SS-230) rescues downed pilot, Lieutenant Bush of Torpedo Squadron 51 on September 2, 1944 after Japanese antiaircraft defense shot down his torpedo bomber between the northeastern end of Minami Jima and the southern tip of Chichi Jima. (Left-click the picture to enlarge.)
In the bottom picture, Rescued pilots and the crew and officers of the Finback. Lt. (jg) George Herbert Walker Bush is second from the left in the front row.
Bush, and 4 other rescued aviators remained on the Finback as "guests" while she tracked and attacked convoys, endured depth charges from Japanese escort ships, and sank two ships (an oiler and small cargo ship). The five ended their stay on the Finback on Midway Island on September 29, after 29 days aboard the submarine (and crossing the international date line).
Read more about how the submarine service performed "Lifeguard Duty" during WW2 in the National Archives HERE.

Click video to START.

The Loss of the Perch

View Loss of the Perch video

Click HERE to select another video.


US Flag at half staff

Governor Hobbs has ordered flags at all state buildings to be lowered to half-staff immediately until sunset on the day of interment, as a mark of respect for the memory of retired Associate Justice Sandra Day O'Connor who passed away on Friday, Dec. 1. Day of interment will be announced at a later date.
Governor Hobbs issued the following statement:
"Justice Sandra Day O’Connor put people above all else and created an eternal legacy that will forever be ingrained in the fibers of our state and nation’s history.
On behalf of the State of Arizona, I send my deepest sympathies to her family, loved ones & everyone touched by her trailblazing legacy."
Individuals, businesses, and other organizations are encouraged to join in this tribute.

65 U.S. Submarines never returned to port. Click on Eternal Patrol and see pictures and stories of the "boats" that remain at sea . . . forever, on eternal patrol.

Need to reach us or have a question?

An anchor line separator

USSVI Creed:

"To perpetuate the memory of our shipmates who gave their lives in the pursuit of their duties while serving their country. That their dedication, deeds and supreme sacrifice be a constant source of motivation toward greater accomplishments. Pledge loyalty and patriotism to the United States of America and its Constitution.

In addition to perpetuating the memory of departed shipmates, we shall provide a way for all Submariners to gather for the mutual benefit and enjoyment. Our common heritage as Submariners shall be strengthened by camaraderie. We support a strong U.S. Submarine Force.

The organization will engage in various projects and deeds that will bring about the perpetual remembrance of those shipmates who have given the supreme sacrifice. The organization will also endeavor to educate all third parties it comes in contact with about the services our submarine brothers performed and how their sacrifices made possible the freedom and lifestyle we enjoy today."

An anchor line separator

We honor those submariners
who have never
returned to port
and remain on
Eternal Patrol

Link to boats on Eternal Patrol

Click on the picture, above,
to see those boats on
"Eternal Patrol"

An anchor line separator


Officer Dolphins

WE are an organization with but one simple requirement to join
— have you ever worn Dolphins?
(been designated, "Qualified in Submarines.")

All of us have served their country
in the Silent Service

Enlisted Dolphins


An anchor line separator

Because we are the "SILENT SERVICE," many people are unaware of the services our submarine Brothers of the 'Phin performed in the Korean and Vietnam Wars. Thirty submarines served in the Korean War, as detailed on the Korean War Educator website *. Sixty-six submarines served in the Vietnam War, as detailed in a letter from United States Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus. Also check out the related SubVet_News-2019-030 regarding Agent Orange exposure by Blue Water veterans.

An anchor line separator
Click here for the Submarine Glossary

Click on the Blackboard for a Complete Glossary of Submarine, Naval and Nautical Terms

An anchor line separator

Click on this sentence, or the photo, below, to see how the float was constructed

Pictures showing how the float was constructed

To honor those who currently serve, and those who went before us, we built this float that we use in parades and static displays. The float is a 1/15 scale model of the nuclear powered submarine USS Phoenix (SSN-702,) named after our city. The Phoenix was a Los Angeles-class submarine that was 362 feet long and, on the surface, had 32 feet of the ship under water.
If you would like us to bring the USS Phoenix to your parade or event, contact our Event Coordinator.

Need a description of the Perch Base float, a scale model of the USS Phoenix (SSN-702)?
Click on the document icon, below, to get the approved and authentic script suitable for parades or other public events.

Refer the event organizers to Float-Announcer-Script.pdf

Script suitable for parades or other public events.

An anchor line separator
Click here for the Submarine Glossary

Click here for a complete historical listing of all the classes of submarines.