A May 1944 Monthly History Report

The USS Intrepid, 75 years ago (this past August 16th, 2017) was commissioned and joined the U.S. Navy in the middle of World War II. For the next two years she and her crew trained, fitted out and then fought their way across the Pacific Ocean. Along the way, the contributions the ship and crew made to victory were vital and the price they paid heavy. Travel with our Museum tour guides here each month as they follow Intrepid’s journey and its crew’s experience throughout World War II.

May 1944: Captains

During Intrepid’s long career in the United States Navy, 30 different men served as the ship’s captain, or commanding officer (CO). Today, there is a plaque on the restored navigation bridge listing the names of these men and the years they were aboard. Museum guests are often very surprised to find out that not one of the captains held that post on Intrepid longer than 14 months. In fact, many served aboard for far shorter periods of time. But while the frequency of changes in command may seem strange, it has long been common practice in the U.S. Navy. Officers are regularly rotated to different positions and jobs, as well as between ship and shore posts. The variety helps to mold well-rounded leaders and ensure that each receives experience in both the command as well as the administrative side of Navy officership. During times of war, the number of available commanding officer billets grows, and the reassignment process tends to accelerate. In fact, in May 1944, while Intrepid spent yet another month in California under repair, three different men rightly called themselves captain.

Intrepid’s History
Capt. William Dodge Sample (pictured) was in command of USS Intrepid for a single month before being reassigned to USS Hornet. Courtesy of the National Museum of Naval Aviation
At the beginning of May 1944, Capt. William Dodge Sample was only in his second week aboard. Back on April 19, he reported to Intrepid and took over from Cdr. Richard Gaines. Gaines, Intrepid’s Executive Officer, had served as interim commanding officer since the promotion and departure of Adm. Thomas Sprague in March. As for Sample, he was a rising star in the Navy. The son of a retired army general from Buffalo, New York, he graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1919 and qualified as an aviator a few years later. Before Intrepid, Sample supervised the conversion of USS Santee from oil tanker into escort carrier. Next he took Santee into harm’s way in support of Operation Torch, the invasion of North Africa. Sample’s tenure on board Intrepid was significant, as he supervised continuing repairs, but brief. On May 19, after just a month as captain, he was reassigned to fill a vacancy on another fully operational carrier, USS Hornet.  As captain of Hornet, Sample went on to lead it through the battle of the Philippine Sea in June. Later that summer he was promoted to Rear Admiral, becoming the youngest Admiral in the Pacific Fleet during World War II. Sample served through the rest of the war and into the occupation of Japan until his death in October 1945 during an airplane crash. Sample is buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
Intrepid’s History
Capt. William Dodge Sample (center, at microphone) took over command of Intrepid from Cdr. Richard Gaines (to Sample’s left) on April 19, 1944, only to turn the ship back over to Gaines a month later. Courtesy of the National Museum of Naval Aviation
Upon Sample’s departure Cdr. Gaines assumed temporary command of USS Intrepid for the second time. Gaines, the son of a congressman, was from White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia. He graduated from Annapolis in 1925. As executive officer Gaines was with Intrepid from the very beginning, reporting aboard in June 1943. He would stay aboard until September 1944. Though Gaines’s rank during his two brief periods as CO remained commander, he nevertheless held the title of “captain.” In the U.S. Navy, any officer commanding a ship is always referred to as “captain” while aboard their vessel. This time around, Gaines’s tenure as captain included the May 26, 1944 refloating and dry-docking of Intrepid. Five days later he turned over command of the carrier for the last time to newly arrived Captain Joseph F. Bolger.
Intrepid’s History
Capt. Joseph F. Bolger took command of USS Intrepid in late May 1944. In the months that followed, he led the ship and crew through their largest battle and closest brush with disaster. Collection of the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum
Like Sample, Bolger was another promising aviator on his way to bigger and better things, though his stay aboard would be far longer. Bolger was part of the Naval Academy Class of 1921 and from Adams, Massachusetts. Since October 1942 he had served ashore as aide to the Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Air. On May 30, 1944 the same day Bolger took command, Intrepid’s repairs were finally completed. Preparations began immediately for a return journey to Pearl Harbor. One of Bolger’s first acts upon taking command was to begin an intense training program with much emphasis on anti-aircraft gunnery. Eighteen years later, the 1963 cruise book made reference to the training program observing that “there was hardly a fact to be learned that would not find its practical application in the very near future.” Intrepid seemed to finally be heading back into the Pacific War.

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Websites of Interest to Former Crewmembers

Former Crewmembers (FCMs), as a proud father of a 23 yr. retired U.S. Navy Deep Sea Diver, Michael Simonetti (BM1, & former AMS2) , I submit the following:

Please check-out the following Website…
https://www.jsdesignindustries.com/ … also please check-out …
Enjoy, and pass-the-word to your shipmates.
Thank you,
John Simonetti
AMS3, V6 Division, USS Intrepid (CVA-11), ’61-’62
Past President, USS Intrepid Association, Inc., ’03-’05

OBIT UPDATES

The obituaries LINK, in the column to the R of your screen has been updated and will be updated daily/weekly as needed. Let Us Not Forget Those Who Have Gone Before Us.

For Obit Updates, please go to: http://www.ussintrepidcv11.org/products2.html

Intrepid Fallen Heros Fund

The Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund is a leader in supporting the men and women of the Armed Forces and their families. Begun in 2000 and established as an independent not-for-profit organization in 2003, the Fund has provided close to $150 million in support for the families of military personnel lost in service to our nation, and for severely wounded military personnel and veterans. These efforts are funded entirely with donations from the public, and hundreds of thousands of individuals have contributed to the Fund.

Family Support
From 2000 to 2005 the Fund provided close to $20 million to families of United States and British military personnel lost in performance of their duty, mostly in service in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Fund provided unrestricted grants to each spouse and dependent child; and to parents of unmarried service members. The payments were coordinated with the casualty offices of the Armed Forces, to ensure all eligible families received these benefits. In 2005 federal legislation substantially increased the benefits granted to these families. With that mission accomplished, the Fund redirected its support toward the severely injured.

The Center for the Intrepid
In January 2007 the Fund completed construction of the Center for the Intrepid, a $55 million world-class state-of-the-art physical rehabilitation center at Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas. The Center serves military personnel who have been catastrophically disabled in operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, and veterans severely injured in other operations and in the normal performance of their duties. The 60,000 square foot Center provides ample space and facilities for the rehabilitation needs of the patients and their caregivers. It includes modern physical rehabilitation equipment and extensive indoor and outdoor facilities.


National Intrepid Center of Excellence
Following the opening of the Center for the Intrepid, the Fund turned toward another critical issue faced by our wounded troops: the treatment of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI).  The Fund addressed this need by constructing the National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE). NICoE is a 72,000 square foot, two-story facility located on the Navy campus at Bethesda, Maryland, adjacent to the new Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, with close access to the Uniformed Services University, the National Institutes of Health, and the Veterans Health Administration. NICoE provides the most advanced services for advanced diagnostics, initial treatment plan and family education, introduction to therapeutic modalities, referral and reintegration support for military personnel and veterans with TBI and psychological health conditions. Further, NICoE conducts research, tests new protocols and provides comprehensive training and education to patients, providers and families while maintaining ongoing telehealth follow-up care with patients across the country and throughout the world. NICoE was dedicated on June 24th, 2010 and has now begun its critically important work.
Intrepid Spirit
In 2013 the Fund launched a new campaign to extend the care provided at NICoE to more service members suffering TBI and psychological health conditions. The Fund will build up to nine “Intrepid Spirit” centers at major military bases around the country. These centers will act as satellites to the central NIcoE facility and will allow urgently-needed care to be brought to more troops and closer to home. Construction of all nine centers will cost $100 million. Over $40 million has been raised to date and the first three centers at Fort Belvoir, VA, Camp Lejeune, NC, and Fort Campbell, KY are now in operation. The fourth and fifth centers are now under construction and raising the remaining $60 million will guarantee that additional centers can be built and put into operation to support our wounded heroes in uniform.

Intrepid Spirit Centers

Hundreds of thousands of military personnel have been diagnosed with some level of traumatic brain injury (TBI) in the past decade, many as a result of combat injury. TBI and psychological health (PH) conditions can have long-term and sometimes severe effects on service members’ lives, affecting their ability to work, interact with others, manage basic living tasks, and even interact with their own families. Depression, inability to work or live normal lives, and more tragic consequences including suicide can result. Proper and immediate diagnosis and early treatment are crucial to addressing this critical need among America’s military personnel and veterans.

The Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund is addressing this critical need. Following the opening of the National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE) in 2010, the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund launched its current effort: building “Intrepid Spirit” centers to serve as satellites to NICoE and extend the care provided at NICoE out to the home bases of many of the troops suffering the effects of TBI and PH.

Each Intrepid Spirit center is approximately 25,000 square feet and costs approximately $11 million to build and equip. While much of the operation at NICoE involves research about TBI and PH conditions, Intrepid Spirit care focuses on diagnosis and treatment. Patient care in each center is approached in a manner similar to NICoE, with each Intrepid Spirit center incorporating the following facilities:
Intake/Clinic area including psychiatric testing, chiropractic treatment, acupuncture, neuro psych testing rooms, and typical exam rooms.

Physical Therapy with open gym layout with standard physical therapy equipment.

Sleep Lab equipped with a sleep system and ambient therapy music and a control room equipped with a computer monitoring system.

Central Park, a calm atmosphere for patient and family member relaxation and family education, with a meditative feel and including ambient therapy music.

Family Room, centrally located and adjacent to the outdoor patio, providing a space for patients and family to spend time together, a critical part of the healing process.

The network of Intrepid Spirit centers will provide the most advanced care possible to returning military personnel suffering from TBI and PH conditions; enhance the means of properly identifying and diagnosing these conditions; ensure the continued care of individual patients as they move through NICoE, military medical, VA and potentially external medical systems; and continuously research the causes and effects of these conditions to better understand them and develop the best care and treatment possible.

Intrepid Spirit Center program progress:

Completed Centers:
Fort Belvoir, Virginia, opened August 2013
Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, opened August 2013
Fort Campbell, Kentucky, opened August 2014

Centers under construction:
Fort Bragg, North Carolina, completion projected in 2015
Fort Hood, Texas, completion projected in 2015
Joint Base Lewis-McChord, completion projected in 2017

Three additional Intrepid Spirit centers are planned. Once complete, the Intrepid Spirit centers will treat thousands of patients annually, providing them and their families the most advanced care possible.

For in depth details, go to:

http://www.fallenheroesfund.org/Intrepid-Spirit-Centers.aspx

The B-24 Liberator

For an amazing story about the WWII B-24 Liberator A/C …

Click below

HAPPY NEW YEAR

Former Intrepid Crewmembers … If your not satisfied with what the USS Intrepid Former Crewmember Association’s NEW Website has to offer you … Welcome to my Blog, where you will find articles, stories, facts, etc. that should satisfy your search for information regarding your once ‘… home away from home ‘, the USS Intrepid (CV, CVA, CVS-11).

Intrepid’s Return to NY Screen Show

HiLite this LINK > : http://albums.phanfare.com/isolated/OukWnJRJ/6356980/2988763
> then R click on it, then click on the Go to: LINK

UPDATE

Some may not have been aware that the ‘Guest Book’ found on the Website found at … http://www.wa3key.com/cgi-bin/ibook/ibook.cgi … was established in 2007 by a volunteer non-former Intrepid crewmember, Mr. Norman Drechsel,  to help promote – at the time – the USS Intrepid Association, Inc. (… recently renamed The USS Intrepid Former Crewmember Association). Some  may have noticed the lack of information being posted regarding ANY information coming from or regarding the USS Intrepid Former Crewmember Association on Mr. Dredhsel’s Website or in his Guest Book.

Going back a few years now, the Association opted out of utilizing Mr. Drechsel’s Website without the courtesy of any prior notification to Mr. Drechsel (except only that they were planning their on Website), but he has since opted to maintain the Guest Book as a courtesy to and in respect of ALL Former USS Intrepid (CV, CVA, CVS-11) Former Crewmembers (FCMs).

In appreciation to Mr. Drechsel and on behalf of ALL FCMs, I thank him for the many years and personal time he has devoted in supporting the USS Intrepid Association, Inc. by way of providing access to his Website and Guest Book for all who showed interest. And, I add, his Guest Book will still be available for those who still may be interested. – LET US NOT FORGET THOSE WHO HAVE GONE BEFORE US

John Simonetti, AMS3, V6 Div, Past President, USS Intrepid Association, Inc.,’03-’05,

Email: cv11texfcm@gmail.com

CATCH A LIFT

Former Crewmembers (FCMs), in support of a former shipmate, Dave Coffland ’55-’58 (a Gold Star Father), I provide the following:

Dave’s son, Christopher (Chris) was KIA on Nov 13, 2009 in Afghanistan serving our country. In honor and memory of Chris, Dave’s daughter Lynn, initiated the Catch A Lift (CAL) Foundation. Please go to http://www.catchaliftfund.com/ and click on the ‘About Us’ LINK, where you will learn about Corporal Christopher Coffland and his purpose in life. And, on Dave’s behalf, I am adamant about supporting CAL, so I’ve provided the following summary of CAL:

– CAL works with the Walter Reed Hospital in Bethesda, MD who notifies CAL of vets released to civilian life. When they seek further medical help the VA doctors prescribe gym exercise as the best venue for mental and physical health, but, sorry to say, if a veteran left an arm or leg in a foreign country or have suffered mental issues resulting from their service, the U.S. Govt. does not pay for a gym! CAL, a non-profit started in 2010, enables post 9-11 combat wounded veterans to regain and maintain physical and mental health by providing gym memberships or in home gym equipment to them anywhere in the US. Since inception, CAL now has over 1700 vets in the program and contributes to the need, want and success of it’s mission throughout the post 9-11 combat wounded veteran population.The demand is so great that it will double this coming year.

– CAL veterans are maintaining their fitness nationwide, using the mantra Chris Coffland lived his life by; “through fitness, you can reach your highest potential both mentally and physically”.

– CAL follows the veterans fitness journey through assigned CAL Squads, and Squad Leaders follow the veteran over the course of each year. CAL also provides on-line certification classes in nutrition and fitness for qualified CAL veterans.  Support, camaraderie and team bonding ensures success!

– CAL’s 2014 Audit reports 90.4% of funds are directly spent on CAL veterans and has been rated as a 2015 Top Non-Profit by the ‘greatnonprofits’ organization ( http://greatnonprofits.org/org/christopher-coffland-memorial-fund-inc-dba-catch-a-lift-fund ).

– CAL believes each veteran wants to, and can, actively contribute to his or her own physical and mental health journey.  They bravely supported our nation; now CAL, and we, can support their fitness goals.

Your support of CAL, in any way, will show Dave that we care.

Thank you. – John Simonetti, Past President, USS Intrepid Association, Inc., ’03-’05”

Commissioning of a Navy Ship

The commissioning ceremony marks the acceptance of a ship as a unit of the operating forces of the United States Navy.

At the moment of breaking the commissioning pennant the ship becomes the responsibility of the Commanding Officer, who, together with the ship’s officers and crew, has the duty of making and keeping her ready for any service required by our nation in peace or war.

The commissioning pennant is believed to date from the 17th Century, when the Dutch were at war with the English. The Dutch Admiral Maarten Harpertszoon Tromp hoisted a broom at his masthead to indicate his intention to sweep the English from the sea. This gesture was answered by the English admiral who hoisted a horsewhip, indicating his intention to subdue the Dutch. The English were victorious and ever since the narrow “coachwhip” pennant has been adopted by all nations as the distinctive mark of a ship of war.

The modern U.S. Navy Commissioning pennant is blue at the hoist with a union of seven white stars, and a horizontal red and white stripe at the fly. In lieu of a commission pennant, flagships fly Commodore’s or Admiral’s flags, hence the name flagship.

Intrepid Remembered Website

From Intrepid’s commissioning … present day Former Crew Members (FCMs)

have never, and will never forget …

             … those who have served with pride and dedication

                   and especially those who have gone before us.

                Go to: http://cv11texfcm.wix.com/intrepid-remembered

Battle of Midway

For a dramatic and detailed video of the U.S and Japanese Naval Forces
centered on the Battle of Midway,
and then click on the Battle of Midway Video LINK

USS Intrepid Association Information & Updates

Former Crewmembers, it saddens me to report that it is apparent that the USS Intrepid Former Crewmember Association has opted to disregard providing any information or updates pertaining to the organization to this editor. – John Simonetti, Past President, ’03-’05

Due to this dilemma, former crewmember who visit this ‘Site’ are asked to submit any stories or information that you may think would be a contribution of interest to your fellow former crewmembers.

Send  to – cv11texfcm@gmail.com – And keep the tradition going …

Let Us Not Forget Those Who Have Gone Before.

USS Intrepid CV-11 – History

USS Intrepid CV-11 – History

Go to: http://ussintrepidhistory.wordpress.com