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Lake Washington Council
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Our Experience at the
Bob Curran Breakfast
May 12, 2009
by Vern and Letha Bouwman
Bob's Bio is linked at his photo - right


We have been members with the Navy League for a very short time and are enjoying available events and meeting other members.

On this Tuesday morning, before finding our seat s at table #11, Vern talked briefly with BG Craig W. Blankenstein and VA (Sel) John Currier.

At the table we talked with
Science Instructor Al Trostenson for Liberty High School's "Naval Junior Reserved Officers Training Corps". At the March 11th Dinner, Vern enjoyed talking to three of the cadets who looked him straight into eyes, listening to Vern's sea stories.

B O B    C U R R A N    B I O
Also at their table Vern asked Marine LtCol James A. Stocks, after noticing his Paratrooper Pine, how many times he had jumped wherein Mr. Stocks replied with "5 times", with more explanations. LtCol Stocks presented a  Person Of The Year award to Cpl Jason Graham. We mentioned to him that our family now has a Marine in training, He is PFC Derek Arnold.

During the awards we were reminded of the duties our family friend, Aaron Pultz , who had flown the C-17's out of McCord. Colonel Lisa Tank presented MSgt. Jeffery S. Barsaloux with a Person Of The Year award for his significant impact as a Senior NCO at McCord. We are particularly proud of Aaron.

The keynote speaker, RAdm Herb Bridge (ret), gave an excellent talk about working with Warren Buffett's "Berkshire Hathaway" company for the past 9 years. His words were informative and entertaining. After the program, Vern introduced himself to Mr. Bridge, in hopes of gaining advice about his quest to create a museum for navy oilers. Vern gave Mr. Bridge a copy of his booklet "NEOSHO Class OILER a STORY". Herb actually went home, read the whole book and called Vern. Mr. Bridge complemented Vern on his writing, saying he found it being through and he also learned a few things. He vividly remembered an event with one of Vern's subject oilers, AO-145, in Yokosuka, Japan. RADM Herb Bridge wished Vern good luck in his wish to help educate the public about the importance of Navy Oilers.

The last person Vern spoke to was Personnel Specialist 1st Class (PS1), Jessica Burkhart. She had just received a Person Of The Year award from Captain Michael Kidd who is Commander, Navy Reserve Readiness Command Northwest. Vern gave another copy of his booklet on oilers to Jessica, asking her to give it to Capt. Kidd, allowing him talk with others at the meeting. Vern knew that PS1 Burkhart, who deals with personnel, would do well because of his past experience with yeomen in the navy.

One more person Vern met was Verne Heinig. Verne is "Adopted Unit Liaisons Coordinator" for the Lake Washington Council. Vern Bouwman will be maintaining the web page for Adopted Units and Mr. Heinig will advise on the web page content.