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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.

Latest News (Click Link For More Details)
USS Bullhead

USS Bullhead (SS‑332)
Lest we forget to perpetuate the memory of our shipmates who gave their lives in the pursuit of their duties while serving their country. . .
77 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.
SAILORS, REST YOUR OAR! YOUR WATCH HAS ENDED.
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

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.

David Metje

DAVID METJE ETERNAL PATROL
Perch Base Holland Club Member David E. Metje, FA(SS) (ret) went on Eternal Patrol on July 14, 2022. Our sympathy to his daughter Samantha Fry, who informed us of his passing, and the rest of his family.
David joined the Navy in 1968 and retired in 1989, serving on six submarines, as well as the USS La Salle (AGF-3), a command ship, and the USS Acadia (AD-42), a destroyer tender.
David Metje joined Perch Base on January 22, 2014, and routinely attended our meetings and events. He was inducted into the Holland Club after being qualified for 50 years at our June 21, 2021, base meeting.
View the full Eternal Patrol Notice HERE.
SAILOR, REST YOUR OAR! YOUR WATCH HAS ENDED.
Your Brothers of the 'Phin Have the Watch.
Fair Winds and Following Seas, Shipmate.

Eternal Patrol Dolphins

THE PERCH BASE FOUNDATION
You might be aware that the Arizona Submarine Veterans Perch Base Foundation is an IRS Section 501(c)(3) charitable organization. You might not be aware that all current regular (not associate) members of the Perch Base are also members of the Foundation.
The Perch Base Foundation announced the scheduling of a special meeting of the members to discuss and approve a change to the Foundation’s bylaws at 1300 or immediately following the next Perch Base monthly meeting at Dillon’s Restaurant, whichever is later, on August 13, 2022. No other Foundation business will be conducted at this meeting.
A letter was sent on July 9, 2022, to each member with a summary of the changes to the bylaws.
View a copy of the revised bylaws HERE.

Bag of Money

SCHOLARSHIPS AVAILABLE
Do you know a young adult who is the son, daughter, step son, step daughter, grandson, granddaughter or under the legal guardianship of a Regular Member in good standing of Perch Base who could use extra money for schooling. (Not just college.) See the Perch Base instruction on our website at
Total_Perch_Base_Scholarship_Package.pdf
for details. You can also access the instructions in the Navigation Menu in the upper left corner of any Perch Base webpage and drop down to "Docs and Forms".
The deadline is July 31 so don’t delay!

July 2022 Prescott Parade Photos

PRESCOTT FRONTIER DAYS® PARADE
Perch Base took the USS Phoenix float up to Prescott, Arizona on July 2nd, 2022, 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 2022 Parade Theme was "Celebrating 50 Years of Junior Bonner."
After the parade, we had a BBQ lunch at Sherry and Tom Warner's home in Prescott Valley.
View more event pictures HERE.

Current Newsletter

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

Perch Base USSVI Charter presentation

HAPPY 27th BIRTHDAY
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.

May 2022 USS Oregon Commissioning ceremony Photos

USS OREGON COMMISSIONING:
The USS Oregon (SSN-793) was commissioned on May 28, 2022, in Groton, Connecticut.
Perch Base Holland Club and Life member Johnny Corbin attended the commissioning ceremony.
Johnny has been a long time participant on the Christening and Commissioning Committees, and was the point man for fundraising in Central Oregon. Leftover funds from the ceremonies will be donated to recreation fund for the crew of the USS Oregon..
View more pictures HERE.

May 2022 Memorial Day Photos

MEMORIAL DAY:
After a several year hiatus due to COVID, Perch Base USSVI participated in in-person Memorial Day Ceremonies at the National Cemetery of Arizona, including Tolling of the Boats, on Monday, May 30, 2022. Back in 2020, the Memorial Day Ceremony was cancelled and in 2021, the Memorial Day Ceremony was cancelled, but Perch Base conducted an online virtual Tolling of the Boats ceremony.
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. Chuck Emmett and Don Robertson conducted the Tolling of the Boats ceremony.
View more details and pictures HERE.

USSVI logo

HAPPY 58th BIRTHDAY
The United States Submarine Veterans, Inc., USSVI, was chartered 58 years ago on May 24, 1964.

May 2022 Brody Schafer's Eagle Scout Court of Honor Photos

CONGRATULATIONS EAGLE SCOUT:
Four Perch Base members: Ed Schafer, Jim Denzien, Joe Trotter and Dan Marks, who were all Boy Scouts as youngsters attended Brody Schafer's Eagle Scout Court of Honor on May 14, 2022 at the Friends Church of Phoenix in Phoenix, AZ. Brody is Ed Schafer's grandson. Jim Denzien participated in the ceremony, giving Brody a certificate discussing similarities in progressing through the achievement of Eagle Scout to the qualification in submarines. Jim also discussed how Rear Admiral and Medal of Honor recipient Eugene "Lucky" Fluckey used Boy Scouts from his crew while skipper of the USS Barb (SS-220) to "sink" a train in Japan during World War 2. Perch Base members also included Joe Trotter and Dan Marks, who are both Eagle Scouts. Notice that the sentence is in the present case. Submariners don't say they WERE qualified; they say they ARE qualifed, no matter how many years have passed. Similarly, Eagle Scouts don't say they WERE Eagles, they say they ARE Eagles, no matter how many years have passed.
Congratulations to both Brody Schafer and Ed Schafer!
View more details and pictures HERE.

March 2022 Western Regional Roundup Photos

WESTERN REGIONAL ROUNDUP:
The Annual United States Submarine Veterans Western Regional Roundup was held from April 25, 2022 to April 28, 2022 at the Silver Legacy Resort and Casino in Reno, NV.
104 attendees (including some family members) were present. 14 of those attendees (including some family members) were from from Perch Base.
Activities included a several Memorabilia Auctions, numerous workshops, a movie night (Down Periscope and Run Silent, Run Deep), a luncheon, a dinner banquet, a Tolling of the Boats Ceremony, and more.
View more details and pictures HERE.

John Phillip Holland Photo

HAPPY BIRTHDAY
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 2022 Annual Picnic Photos

ANNUAL PICNIC
Perch Base held its Annual Picnic meeting on Saturday, April 9, 2022. This was the first picnic we have been able to have since COVID set in after the 2019 picnic!
We started with the Perch Base canopy, but the gusty winds forced us to take it down. Our Perch Base Commander, George Woods opened the meeting, Don Unser, our Perch Base Events Coordinator, led the invocation and read our purpose. The Chief of the Boat, Don Robertson, tolled the bell for the Tolling of the Boats Ceremony. George Woods then welcomed the 40 Perch Base members, families and guests, including some members from Tautog Base (Casa Grande) and White Mountain Base that joined us.
View more details and pictures HERE.

2022 Convention logo

SHUFFLE OFF TO BUFFALO
The USSVI Buffalo Base is our host for the 2022 USSVI National Convention in Buffalo, NY. The Convention will be held from 24 - 27 Aug, 2022.
Registration and the hotel room block are now available on the convention website: https://ussviconvention.org/2022/. Read more about the 2022 Convention on our SAILING ORDERS page.

Ed Gonsowski

Ed Gonsowski Eternal Patrol
Perch Base Member Edward Gonsowski, departed on Eternal Patrol on January 7, 2022, at the age of 68. Our condolences to his family.
Ed was born on June 30, 1953. Ed joined the Navy and trained as a nuclear officer. He qualified on the USS Sunfish (SSN-649) in 1981. He left the Navy in 1982 as a Lieutenant.
That is when Ed came to Phoenix, AZ, as a Reactor Operator Trainer, Shift Technical Advisor in the Control Room, and various engineering positions at the Palo Verde Nuclear Generating Station and became a member of Perch Base in 2014.
Ed was interred at the National Memorial Cemetery of Arizona in Phoenix, in SECTION 78 SITE 2035.
View the full Eternal Patrol Notice HERE.
SAILOR, REST YOUR OAR! YOUR WATCH HAS ENDED.
Your Brothers of the 'Phin Have the Watch.
Fair Winds and Following Seas, Shipmate.

Eternal Patrol Dolphins

Jack Patterson, QM1(SS) (ret)

JACK PATTERSON, QM1(SS) (Ret) ETERNAL PATROL
Perch Base Holland Club member Jack Patterson, QM1(SS) USN (Ret.) passed on to Eternal Patrol on January 14, 2022.
Jack served and qualified on the USS Sea Robin (SS-407) from 1951 to 1954 and on the USS Pickerel (SS-524) in 1960.
Jack also served two tours in Vietnam and as a tugboat master.
Services with Military Honors were held on Friday, March 11, 2022 at the National Memorial Cemetery of Arizona. A celebration of life followed directly after the services.
View the full Eternal Patrol Notice HERE.
SAILOR, REST YOUR OAR! YOUR WATCH HAS ENDED.
Your Brothers of the 'Phin Have the Watch.
Fair Winds and Following Seas, Shipmate.

Eternal Patrol Dolphins

Gene Crabb, Cdr, USN (ret)

EUGENE "GENE" VERNON CRABB, CDR, USN (Ret) ETERNAL PATROL
This photo was taken at the January 24, 2015 Annual Awards Banquet when Perch Base Life and Holland Club member Gene Crabb, Cdr, USN (ret) was presented a "Quilt of Valor" by Ms. Helen Choma. Gene and his wife Suzanne left the Phoenix area to Nebraska 14 months ago so he could spend his final months with his two daughters and their families.
Gene had been the Captain of the USS Bashaw (AGSS-241) from 1966 to 1968, as well as the Executive Officer (XO) of the USS Grayback (SSG-574), a Regulus missile boat, and the USS Remora (SS-487).
Perch Base was notified by Suzanne that Gene passed on Tuesday, February 8, 2022.
His ashes will be scattered at sea at a future date.
View the full Eternal Patrol Notice HERE.
SAILOR, REST YOUR OAR! YOUR WATCH HAS ENDED.
Your Brothers of the 'Phin Have the Watch.
Fair Winds and Following Seas, Shipmate.

Eternal Patrol Dolphins

2022 Laveen Parade photos

LAVEEN PARADE
Eight Perch Base members participated on February 5, 2022 in the 21st Annual Laveen Community Parade.
We also had time to "hobnob" with the Phoenix Police Department, staging directly behind us before we rolled. No, we didn't offer bribes, but we gladly shared our stereotypical donuts with the Phoenix PD!
This year's theme was "Laveen Launches Forward!"
87 entries participated in the parade. The crowds along the side of the parade route expressed their appreciation of our service as our float went by.
See more pictures HERE.

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

WANT TO CARPOOL?
NEED A RIDE?
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 webmaster@perch-base.org.
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

JOIN US AT A MEETING.
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!

Boat Sponsorship Program patch

BOAT SPONSORSHIP PROGRAM
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

Proclamation by President Biden:
As a mark of respect for the victims of the senseless acts of gun violence perpetrated on our Independence Day, July 4, 2022, in Highland Park, Illinois, by the authority vested in me as President of the United States by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, I hereby order that the flag of the United States shall be flown at half-staff at the White House and upon all public buildings and grounds, at all military posts and naval stations, and on all naval vessels of the Federal Government in the District of Columbia and throughout the United States and its Territories and possessions until sunset, July 9, 2022. I also direct that the flag shall be flown at half-staff for the same length of time at all United States embassies, legations, consular offices, and other facilities abroad, including all military facilities and naval vessels and stations.

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?
communications@perch-base.org

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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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IF YOU'VE EARNED THESE...

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

...WE WANT YOU!

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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.

QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS FOR THE WEBMASTER?  EMAIL webmaster@perch-base.org