uss southerland dd/ddr 743

The Southerland Scuttlebutt

President: Gary Schweizer - sweenie04 @
Vice President/Event Coordinator - Rick Anderson - andy743 @
Webmaster - Victoria Kosub - victoriakozub @
Treasurer/Secretary - Linda Schweizer - sweenie04 @


Ahoy, Shipmates and families!

 2020 was a year like no other, in-person events became risky affairs and Zoom stepped in as the new way to connect to family and friends. But as with all dark clouds, there is a silver lining, and one of them is the 2021 Reunion is still on the radar. Next month will mark a full year since the beginning of the dreaded COVID-19 pandemic for most of us. I don’t need to tell you  what a struggle it’s been but hopefully all of you have stayed healthy and have either scheduled to have the vaccine taken or have already had it done.

The 2021 USS Southerland Reunion in Portland, Maine is still scheduled and ready for us to attend. As you can see below the dates have changed by coming in 1 day earlier. This had to be done since we canceled last year and for the hotel to accommodate us.  Make sure you have reserved your room at the Best Western Merry Manor Inn at #207-774-6151 (tell them you are with the USS Southerland Reunion) to receive the $124.00 rate per night. This will include breakfast each morning. If you had reserved for last year, that reservation had been canceled and you MUST call again to reserve your room for the 2021. We have reserved 25 rooms; once these rooms have been reserved the price may go up. Shipmates don’t wait!  We will be sending out the signup sheet for tours in May. Below I have added the schedule of events. If there is any COVID Protocol we must follow for these dates I will be sure to pass this on when it gets closer.



Tuesday, Sept 28th   –Can check in hotel after 2pm – Free time during day to tour the town

                      4:30 Hospitality Room opens (Cash bar, Pizza & Snacks) free beer & wine

Wed., Sept. 29th      Land & Sea Tour – if we have enough people signed up, if not free day

                                    Hospitality Room will be open from 4-9 w/cash bar & snacks (hotel has a bar after hrs.)

Thurs., Sept 30th    Bath Main Shipyard Tour & dedication to deceased shipmates

  Leave hotel at 8:45am, back by 5pm.  Hospitality Room will be open from 6-9 w/cash bar      & snacks (hotel has bar after hrs.)

Friday, Oct 1st       Free Day to explore on your own, lots of places to see! Free pickup and drop off to  Old Portland from hotel every half hour from 11-3pm.

                Reunion Banquet – Cocktails 5pm, Dinner following at 6pm. Cost $45 per person

Saturday, Oct 2nd  - Check Out Farewell to shipmates. Breakfast will be served from 6:30-9am.




Land & Sea Tour   Pick up at 9am and conduct city tour until 11am, dropping at Long Wharf for lunch and shopping. Group will reconvene on Long Wharf at 12:45 for a 1pm Harbor Cruise. Cruise concludes at 2:45.


Bath Main Shipyard Tour USS Southerland Museums & Freeport Tour, we will board a bus to the shipbuilding city of Bath Maine. Once in Bath we will do a dedication to our beloved fallen shipmates and place a wreath to sea. Then we will visit Maine Maritime Museum, while in the museum you will receive a guided tour of Bath Iron Works. After visiting the museum we will drive to Freeport where we will enjoy lunch on our own and shopping at LL Bean’s Factory store and dozens of other outlet shops. After lunch and shopping we will drive to Maine Military Museum South Portland. Cost $68 per person


Reunion Banquet  This year you will need to pick your entrée, you have a choice from New York Sirloin, Seafood Newburg in Pastry puff; both served with Veg & baked potato or Vegetable Alfredo. All will come with Tossed Salad, Boston Cream Pie or Carrot Cake. * We are asking each person to bring something that represents their home state for our raffle. We did this at the last reunion and everyone really enjoyed it!!  You will need to decide when you fill out the signup sheet which will be mailed to you in May.


The 2021 reunion has left free time for all to enjoy the area, there is so much to see and do. Start digging out your old photos to bring to the reunion, it always makes a good conversation piece.  We did this at the last reunion and everyone really enjoyed it!! Reminder dues are $15 dollars a year, or $150 for lifetime. Please don’t forget to keep these current. Thank You for your support.  If you have any questions don’t hesitate to call Gary at 574-276-9539.


From the Goat Locker:  A Little Trivia Time

  1. How did the Navy get its name?
  1. What is the oldest commissioned US Navy ship?
  1. How many battleships does the US Navy have in active service (July 2000)?

If a sailor tells you that he/she “did the ditch”, to what is he/she referring?


Answer:  1.) First attested in English in the early 14th century, the word “navy” came via Old French navie, “fleet of ships”, from the Latin navigium, “a vessel, a ship, bark, boat”, from navis, “ship”. 
The USS Constitution was commissioned over 200 years ago, originally launched October 21, 1797.  
The answer is 0; four were in and out of service through the 1980’s but have since been placed in reserved status (mothballed).  
A sailor who” did the ditch” was aboard a US Navy (or US Coast Guard) ship as it transited the Suez Canal. Sailors who experience this receive a large certificate suitable for framing along with a wallet size card. Both documents bear the heading “Suez Safari”.  How many of you received this honor and still have it, if you do bring it to show at the reunion.


Fallen Shipmates

DK2 Gerald Hill deceased  02/8/2020

SN John Geyer deceased 7/30/20020

*If you know of any other shipmate that passed away, please let me know so I can update the roster, Thank You!


Ship Store

Don’t forget that shipmate Jim Kumbalek can work directly with you to purchase hats, emblems, and shirts bearing the USS Southerland DD/DDR 743 logo. Contact Jim at 920-684-8976 or email


Gary Schweizer, President

USS Southerland Reunion Committee


US Navy