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USS THRESHER (SSN 593)

TOWN of KITTERY, MAINE - FLAG DEDICATION IN MEMORIAM - 50th

PROJECT UPDATE - JULY 29
MEMORIAL PARK - DEDICATED
THE MEMORIAL PROJECT
THE THRESHER STORY
IRENE J. HARVEY
WASHINGTON NAVY YARD
MAJOR CONTRIBUTORS
COMMEMORATIVE DONORS
SILENT STRENGTH SPONSORS
MEMENTOS
DONATIONS - PAYPAL
CONTACT US
NEWS-LINKS-TESTIMONIALS
MEMORIAL CIRCLE COMPLETE
THE FLAGPOLE
DEDICATION PLANS
THE CEREMONY

KITTERY THRESHER MEMORIAL PROJECT UPDATE,  July 29th, 2014



RAYTHEON COMPANY

The Group expresses greatest appreciation to the Raytheon Company, led by Vice President Gibson G. Lebeouf, for its $2,500.00 contribution to the Thresher Memorial in memory of employee Maurice Jaquay who was aboard Thresher when she went down. 

 

In November 1955, Maurice enlisted in the naval service and served aboard the aircraft carrier USS Tarawa (CVS 40), until his honorable discharge in November 1959.  In 1961, he accepted a position with the electronic services operation of the Raytheon Co. of Burlington, MA, where he was engaged in sonar equipment field engineering.

 

At Raytheon, Maurice was considered a brilliant sonar engineer. Although he was a member of Raytheon's electronic services operation, Maurice was on temporary duty with the Submarine Signal Division in April 1963.  His mission aboard Thresher was to service sonar equipment during her test period.

                                                                                                                                                           

GAIL ANN ANDERSON

With heartfelt gratitude, we also thank Ronald Anderson of Kittery for his commemorative sponsorship in Memorial Park to honor the memory of his wife of 49 years, Gail Ann Anderson. 

 

In his own words, “I was on the shipyard, stationed on the John Adams when Thresher went down. So I remember it vividly, friends with lots of the crew members and knew most by sight …..”

 

Our condolences, sir, and sincerest wish that your grief for your lady’s passing be filled with nothing but the warmest and fondest memories.

                                                                                                                                                           

MEMORIAL PARK SERVICE

From the Portsmouth Herald, June 26, 2014, By Deborah McDermott


A former submariner who loved the Navy and his country was remembered at a July 4 ceremony with full military honors at the town's new memorial park near Town Hall. The ceremony honored the life of Elbert "Fergy" Ferguson, who served for 20 years aboard submarines in the Navy and another 20 years as rigger at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard.

 

Not only was Independence Day an appropriate day to honor this patriotic man's life, said his friend Rhonda Pomerleau of Kittery, it is his birthday, and so a fine day to pay tribute to someone his family called a wonderful person.

                                                                                                                                                           

MEMORIAL PARK LAST PAVER

Almost within heartbeats of issue of the last Project Update several recipients asked to have the last Silver Anchor, all of whom are previous contributors!  So very heartwarming to receive that kind of endorsement!  And the winner was…Ken Bonnell, SMC(SS) USN, Ret. Of Greenville, MS.

 

With that, if anyone wishes to make a donation, or add a special memorial feature in the Park, the Group will most certainly try to make it happen.  Just be in touch.

                                                                                                                                                           

MEMORIAL PARK PARKING

The Maine Department of Transportation license for the Thresher Memorial Flagpole in Memorial Circle requires discouraging pedestrian access across the very busy US Rte 1 travel way (fairly obviously why).

 

It was the impetus, but not the whole reason, Memorial Park with the Thresher monument, Circle of Honor Courtyard, and Irene Harvey flagpole, were created. 

 

It is truly a place for quiet reflection, and  “a monument where we (Thresher family) could go to on April 10 to place flowers and acknowledge their sacrifice.” Where, “the sacrifices that have been made by so many brave men & women who, without thought for their own safety, defended our beautiful country, often at the expense of their own lives”, can be fully appreciated.  (quotes from Tim Noonis & Carol Abrams Norton).

 

Thresher Memorial Project Group hopes time may bring other tributes to all veterans, first responders, and Peace Corps members with that same respect and veneration to those paying, or having paid, the price of freedom.

 

A new sign at the driveway entrance now says, “Memorial Park Parking”, with thanks to the Kittery Planning Board for their Town code “joint parking facility” consideration (other than occasional single visitors…Park events are most likely to occur when T0wn Hall is closed).

                                                                                                                                                           

SILENT STRENGTH

Author D. Allan Kerr has been invited and will attend the following are upcoming events which would provide an opportunity to promote the Thresher's legacy and the Memorial Project:

  Appearing at New England Authors Expo, Wednesday July 30, 4 to 9 pm at Danversport MA Yacht Club, The Harborview Ballroom 161 Elliott Street (Rte. 62) Danvers, MA

 

  Speaking at Kittery Estates, Kittery ME, Aug. 14th at 6:45 p.m.

 

   Speaking at US Submarine Veterans USS Maine Base in Augusta, ME on September 21st , American Legion Post 205 on Eastern Ave. (Rt. 17) at 12:30pm.

 

  Speaking at New Castle Congregational Church Parish Hall, Main St., New Castle NH, October 8 at 5:30 p.m. Potluck Supper.

 

  Speaking at St. Marys Submarine Museum in Georgia, first week of November, during their Annual WWII Submarine Veterans Memorial,  an event they’ve had in Kings Bay for the past 25 or so years.

                                                                                                                                                           

TURNKEY – TURNOVER??

And so it came to pass.  As it was meant to be.  Call it karma, kismet, or simple influence of the almighty.  And no one was in charge.

 

With only a few bits & bobs to be done, the Kittery Thresher Memorial Project is nearing its end.  Wrapping up those details, with a pitch to the Town Council to accept these stately, dignified, symbolic, significant, “improvements” as a gift to the Town….for its history….and its future….

 

Despite trials, tribulations, and challenges along the way, perseverance prevailed because so many… people, companies,  organizations… gave so much in so many ways, small and large, to make it be so.  Because they accepted the rightness….that any who may see and reflect can acknowledge its simple justness and superlative magnificence.

 

With that comes to mind, (with thanks to Madeline Field, Senior English Teacher, 1963)

 

“The Moving Finger writes; and, having writ,

  Moves on: nor all thy Piety nor Wit

  Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,

  Nor all thy Tears wash out a Word of it.”

Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam

 

The point being, once the moment is past, it's gone. There's no way to recapture it, regardless of prayers or cleverness or anything else.  Once the "moving finger writes," time marches on and nothing will ever be able to change whatever happened during that instant in time. The incident is over and done, recorded and unchangeable. Nor would any of the Group wish otherwise.

 

So mote it ever be.  Now then, a listing (hesitant to say full or complete and miss someone unintentionally) of those responsible will be publicized soon. 

 

But it must be known that the Project Group could not have achieved anything without the first, firm, and foremost, support of the Kittery Maine Improvement Foundation.  Judy Spiller, George Dow, Duncan McEachern, Gerry Mylroie (many hats here), and former Town Manager Jonathon Carter were/are truly visionary in establishing an organization simply to support efforts designed to benefit the Town of Kittery.

 

It goes without saying….and usually nobody does say it….the Group has very much appreciated the cooperation and support from Kittery Police Chief Ted Short & company, Fire Chief Dave O’Brien & company…and especially Commissioner Norman Albert and the Public Works Department.  With this and everything else they do, there is no question this Town is well served.

 

It yet remains that repositing the Project history…nurturing the Memorials’ future…. and continuing the entire “Never to be forgotten” memories should have a caretaker. 

 

If anyone would care to take up the torch…be in touch.  Thank you.