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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.

★   Flags at half staff sunrise to sunset Thursday, August 5, to honor Border Patrol Agent Daniel P. Cox   ★    Monthly Meeting, Saturday, August 14, Noon    ★

USS Bullhead

Lest we forget to perpetuate the memory of our shipmates who gave their lives in the pursuit of their duties while serving their country. . .
76 years ago, on Aug. 6, 1945, the USS Bullhead (SS‑332), sailed off into history on her final and eternal patrol.
Bullhead was the very last US Navy ship sunk by enemy action during World War II, probably on the same day that the first atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima. It is difficult to determine precisely which of the many Japanese anti-submarine attacks was the one that sank Bullhead. However, one occurred on 6 August 1945, when a Japanese Army plane attacked with depth charges. It claimed two direct hits, and for ten minutes thereafter, there was a great amount of gushing oil and air bubbles rising in the water. Since the position given is very near the Bali coast, it is presumed that the proximity of mountain peaks shortened Bullhead's radar range and prevented her receiving a warning of the plane's approach.
84 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.

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.

Ernie (The Kid) Plantz

Ernie (The Kid) Plantz
Perch Base Life and Holland Club member and SVWWII member Ernie (The Kid) Plantz (his home base was Groton Base in Groton, Connecticut) was a Seaman Electrician Striker (SS) on board the USS Perch (SS-176) when it was scuttled in 1942.
Ernie was interviewed in the book "Trial And Triumph," authored by Stephen Leal Jackson (2005, Dog Ear Publishing.)
He found himself a prisoner of the Japanese for three and a half grueling years; 1,297 days. The book details the atrocities, beatings with bats and bamboo sticks, starvation, dysentery, malaria and pellagra suffered by the POWs.
Although the book is available slightly cheaper from Amazon, I purchased my copy, signed by Ernie, online from the USS Nautilus Museum Store, figuring it was for a "good cause."
Read more about the USS Perch (SS-176) war patrols and POW survivors HERE.
Ernie (The Kid) Plantz passed on to Eternal Patrol December 19, 2015, at the age of 95. His Eternal Patrol notice is HERE.

Forrest Watson

Forrest Watson Eternal Patrol
Perch Base Holland Club and Life Member Forrest Jerome Watson, 88, passed away Tuesday, July 13, 2021.
Our condolences to his wife, Jane, and the rest of the family.
Forrest was born July 27, 1932. He joined the Navy in 1950. Forrest went to Electronics Technician school in Great Lakes from 1950-51, then on to Submarine School in New London CT in 1951. He qualified in submarines on the USS Stickleback (SS‑415) in 1952 and later also was assigned to the USS Carp (SS‑338) from 1952 to 1953, leaving the Navy as an ET2(SS) in 1953.
Forrest joined Perch Base in April 2006, and subsequently inducted into the Holland Club (50 years qualified) at our Annual Awards Banquet, Jan. 15, 2011.
Memorial services have not been announced, however discussion with family has determined that services will be in Minnesota.
View the full Eternal Patrol Notice HERE.
Your Brothers of the 'Phin Have the Watch.
Fair Winds and Following Seas, Shipmate.

Eternal Patrol Dolphins

Mike Keating

Mike Keating Eternal Patrol
Perch Base Holland Club and Life Member L. A. Mike Keating, departed on Eternal Patrol on July 20, 2021. Our condolences to Lois and the rest of the family.
Mike was assigned to his first boat, the USS Atule (SS‑403) for only two months in 1964, and then was re-assigned to his qual boat, USS Quillback (SS‑424). He also served on USS Amberjack (SS‑522), USS Bergall (SSN‑667) and USS Cavalla (SSN‑684).
Mike qualified in 1964 and retired as a Fire Control Technician, FTG1(SS).
One of Mike's hobbies was building models of submarines, as shown in the photo, above. Mike also built a 10-foot long model of the USS Cavalla (SSN‑684) in 2008 which was used by Perch Base in the Veteran's Day parades until the larger USS Phoenix (SSN‑702) float was placed in service.
Memorial services have not been announced, however discussion with family has determined that a memorial service will be held in Chandler, AZ, likely August 21. Further specifics will be posted in the future. Interment location and date to be determined.
View the full Eternal Patrol Notice HERE.
Your Brothers of the 'Phin Have the Watch.
Fair Winds and Following Seas, Shipmate.

Eternal Patrol Dolphins

Joe Errante

Joe Errante Eternal Patrol
Former Perch Base Member Joseph Frank Errante, departed on Eternal Patrol on June 24, 2021, at the age of 62. Our condolences to his wife, Brenda Errante and the rest of the family.
Joe was born on April 9, 1959, joined the Navy in 1979, and was assigned to USS Barb (SSN‑596) in 1982.
He qualified on the Barb in 1982 and left the Navy in 1985 as an IC1(SS).
That is when Joe came to Phoenix, AZ, as a Reactor Operator and Trainer at the Palo Verde Nuclear Generating Station and became a member of Perch Base from approximately 2002 through 2012.
View the full Eternal Patrol Notice HERE.
Your Brothers of the 'Phin Have the Watch.
Fair Winds and Following Seas, Shipmate.

Eternal Patrol Dolphins

July 2021 Prescott Parade Photos

Prescott Frontier Days® Parade
Perch Base took the USS Phoenix float up to Prescott, Arizona on July 3rd, 2021, 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!
The 2021 Parade Theme was "True Western Determination."
After the parade, we had a BBQ lunch at Sherry and Tom Warner's home in Prescott Valley.
View more event pictures HERE.

Perch Base USSVI Charter presentation

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.
Read more about the charter HERE.

June 2021 Holland Club Induction Ceremony photos

Perch Base Submarine Veterans (USSVI) conducted a Holland Club Induction Ceremony (50 years qualified) for Jerry Allston, Kelly Grissom, David Metje, Alan Miller, Carl Miner and Don Schafer on June 12, 2021.
Separate Holland Club Induction Ceremonies were also conducted by Jim Denzien and George Woods at the homes of Robert Hayball and Wayne Hembree who are on the Binnacle List and were unable to attend.
View more pictures HERE.

May 2021 Memorial Day at Salt River photos

Perch Base members Joe Trotter and Howard Doyle attended the Memorial Day ceremony and wreath laying by Nikki Stratton (Sponsor for USS Arizona SSN-803) at the USS Arizona Memorial Gardens at Salt River in Scottsdale, AZ, on May 31, 2021. The Salt River Indian Community’s American Legion Bushmaster’s Post 114 performed military honors at USS Arizona Memorial Gardens at Salt River including a 21 gun salute, laying of the wreath, and playing TAPS. View more pictures HERE.
Other Perch Base members attended the Memorial Day ceremony at the Sunland Memorial Park in Sun City, AZ. See the adjacent article.
You can learn more about the USS Arizona Memorial Gardens at Salt River on the Perch Base website HERE

May 2021 Memorial Day photos

Seven Perch Base members and wives attended the Memorial Day ceremony conducted by the North West Valley Veterans Association (NWVVA) and held at Sunland Memorial Park in Sun City, AZ, on May 31, 2021. The ceremony was opened with a flyover by the Falcon Warbirds and a drive-by by the Legion Riders of Legion Posts #96 and #62.
Distiguished guests included Uncle Sam (Joe Delgado,) the Keynote Speaker, Col. Theodore (Ted) M. Stults II, United States Army (Ret), and the Rosie the Riveter Association Sun City Chapter. View more pictures HERE.
Other Perch Base members attended the Memorial Day ceremony at the USS Arizona Memorial Gardens at Salt River. See the adjacent article.

USSVI logo

The United States Submarine Veterans, Inc., USSVI, was chartered 55 years ago on May 22, 1964.

May 2021 Chris Urness Commendation Photos

Congratulations to Chris Urness. At the May 8, 2021, Perch Base monthly meeting, Western Region Director Vic Van Horn awarded a Letter of Commendation to Chris Urness, Co-Chairman of the Arizona Silent Service Memorial (ASSM) for his efforts leading to the completion and dedication of the Memorial. A similar Commendation has been issued for the other Co-Chairman Marcus Hensley, who was not present at this meeting.
This was the first meeting back at Dillon's BBQ restaurant in a long time due to the Coronavirus. It is good to be back, and the attendance reflected that!
View more pictures HERE.

May 2021 New Officers selected

We had vacancies in the positions of Chief of the Boat (COB) and Base Historian. The Perch Base Policies and Procedures Manual states that those positions are appointed by the Base Commander with the concurrence of the Board of Directors. Per the Manual, our Base Commander, George Woods, has appointed Don Robertson (left) as our new COB, and Chuck Emmett (right) as our new Base Historian.
The COB vacancy resulted from our previous COB, Carl Miner, being elected as the Base Vice Commander. The Base Historian position had been filled by since May 2015 by Chuck Luna, who is also our Communications Officer, and MidWatch Newsletter Editor. Chuck Luna is so busy with his other roles, that it was time to reassign the Base Historian position.
The Perch Base Board of Directors thanks Carl Miner and Chuck Luna for their service in their previous positions and looks forward to working with Don Robertson and Chuck Emmett in these new appointments.

Angus McPherson

Angus McPherson Eternal Patrol
Perch Base Life Member and Holland Club Member Angus Howard McPherson, departed on Eternal Patrol on April 4, 2021, at the age of 94. Our condolences to Clista McPherson and the rest of the family.
There was a graveside service on Tuesday April 27th at 1100 hrs. at the National Cemetery.
Angus was born in Chinook, MT on 08/01/1926, joined the Navy in November 1944, and was assigned to USS Gabilan (SS‑252) relief crew.
He was then reassigned to the USS Pomodon (SS‑486) relief crew. He was a Seaman Engineman EMFN(SS) when he left the Navy in June 1946.
Angus was a member of the Submarine Veterans of World War II (SVWWII card #17006).
View the full Eternal Patrol Notice HERE.
Your Brothers of the 'Phin Have the Watch.
Fair Winds and Following Seas, Shipmate.

KRI Nanggala (402)

The Indonesian Navy designated the submarine KRI Nanggala 402 lost on 24 April, 2021, based on debris recovered, depth of the ocean of 850 meters (2,800 ft) which is beyond crush depth, and duration beyond the available oxygen on board. Perch Base Submarine Veterans extends our condolences to the families of the crew of 53 souls on Eternal Patrol.
Indonesia submarine KRI Nanggala (402) went missing on 21 April 2021, after it failed to report in while undertaking a simulated torpedo firing in preparation for a live firing later this week. The submarine had received clearance to dive and then immediately lost contact.
View the full Eternal Patrol Notice HERE.
Your Brothers of the 'Phin Have the Watch.
Fair Winds and Following Seas, Shipmates.

Eternal Patrol Dolphins

April 2021 ASSM Dedication Photos

The Arizona Silent Service Memorial (ASSM,) located in Wesley Bolin Memorial Plaza, just east of the Arizona Capitol Building was dedicated on April 17, 2021. Over 120 people were present for the ceremony, including Jack Holder, one of two remaining survivors of the Pearl Harbor attack by the Japanese.
The Keynote Speaker was Vernon J. Parks Jr, Captain, USN, retired.
View more details and pictures HERE.

John Phillip Holland Photo

The “Submarine Force Birthday” is April 11. Holland VI was purchased by the U.S. government for the sum of $150,000 on 11 April 1900 from John Phillip Holland's Holland Torpedo Boat Company. She was considered to be the first truly successful craft of her type. Holland VI was modified after her christening, and was renamed USS Holland (SS-1) when she was commissioned. The United States Government soon ordered more submarines from Holland's company, which became the Electric Boat company. These boats were to be known as the Plunger class. These became America's first fleet of underwater naval vessels.
Some Submariners consider April 11 to be "Wear Your Dolphins to Work Day."

April 2021 ASSM Paver Installation Photos

The Arizona Silent Service Memorial (ASSM) finances the cost of continuing maintenance by donations, challenge coin sales and sales of paver bricks.
Go to the ASSM website to purchase pavers.
On Saturday, April 10, 2021, Perch Base members added new pavers to the Memorial, in preparation for the official ASSM Dedication Ceremony, scheduled for the following Saturday.
Additionally, the ASSM artist, Nate Decker, was onsite to do some "touch-up" work on the Monument.
Note the Missile Tech with the hammer! View more details and pictures HERE.

United Arizona Veterans (UAV)

Jim Denzien is our Perch Base representative to the United Arizona Veterans (UAV.) Jim is looking for an alternate.
The UAV meets monthly, and Jim stated that all future meetings through the end of 2022 will be ZOOM meetings, so little effort is required.
We haven’t had an alternate since Lou Reynolds went on Eternal Patrol.
If you are interested, or want to know more, contact Jim or one of our Base Officers.

New Facebook Page

Visit Our 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

We Trained For This!
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: Several recent meetings have been cancelled or moved due to the coronavirus. Check our SAILING ORDERS page before "dropping in" on a meeting!

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 Life Member Vic Van Horn is the USSVI BSP Program Manager. Let’s make Vic proud. Check your copy of the American Submariner to sign up for the program.

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

Lt. (jg) George Herbert Walker 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 Doug Ducey ordered flags at all state buildings be lowered to half-staff from sunrise to sunset Thursday, August 5, 2021, to honor Tucson sector U.S. Border Patrol Agent Daniel P. Cox, who died in a head-on collision on Saturday while on duty.
"Arizona is devastated by the loss of Border Patrol Agent Daniel Cox," said Governor Ducey. "He dedicated more than 20 years to protecting our nation, and his service has helped create a safer environment for our border communities and all Arizonans. My prayers are with Agent Cox’s loved ones and Southern Arizona’s law enforcement community at this difficult time. I’ve ordered state flags be lowered to half-staff in honor of his life, service and bravery." Agent Daniel P. Cox and a civilian died in a two-vehicle collision at around 12:30 a.m. Saturday, July 31 on State Route 86 near Sells.
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?

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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."

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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"

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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


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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.

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Click here for the Submarine Glossary

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

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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.

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.