Even though it was only 46-degrees in VB, and many uniforms and costumes were covered by heavy coats, the parade went on with the usual bands, marchers, and veterans groups. But this year PBR 721 was added to the mix and was well received by those brave souls standing on the curbs in heavy coats!
PBR 721’s involvement this year was orchestrated by SKC (SS) Patrick Doyle (Ret.), and CMC John Heistand SSSW (Ret.) of VFW Post 392 in VB. John jumped through hoops to acquire the necessary permits, and drove down to NC to tow PBR 721 to VB and back, while Pat crewed the boat in the parade pulling down the antenna’s every now and again!
Also crewing the boat were PBR Vietnam Veteran Donald Stegiel- GMG/SFC, Dinah Doyle, Katie Kennon, Karen Slatter, while I drove the lead chase truck along with Tom Farrel, Army PBR Vietnam Veteran and President of the Sea Tigers Association.
Following in the second chase vehicle was David Pizzoferrato, owner of PBR 6927 up in Ohio, with Rick Larsen (Mass.) owner of “Rick Larsen Stencils“, supplier of military stencils.
Following along on foot, documenting all this was Mike Hebert (poor soul), an Army PBR Vietnam Veteran, and “Riverine Reporter” for the Sea Tiger Association, who took all of these pics!
Below is the video of the complete parade, and you’ll see us at about the 30:20 mark, while the pics are in gallery below.
Bill Ferguson steered a Vietnam War riverboat up the Pasquotank River.
The scene was strikingly similar to his experience nearly 50 years ago when he went around the Mekong Delta searching for the enemy.
Only instead of dodging bullets or fretting about what waited around the next bend, Ferguson, 74, casually took in the setting. (Read More…)
Well, it’s over, but not in our collective memories!
This joint US Army-US Navy reunion, under the US Army’s 458th’s Transportation Co. (PBR) Vietnam Veterans reunion officers, went better than expected. We canceled the rock fight because we were one, and brothers in arms! CMC Jeff Covington, formerly with NECC Little Creek and now assigned to the Joint Task Force Civil Support at Fort Eustis, our good friend who will support us at the drop of a hat, and whom we would do the same for, made all the arrangements with Maj. Gen. William F. Roy at Fort Eustis, who spent a lot of time with us on the boats and was well received by everyone! Thank you Master Chief for your support!
CMC Bill Austin, from Special Boat Team 20, at Little Creek, Va., who came to our support by providing us with Two (2) RIB fast attack boats under the command of Senior Chief Chris Favata, who gave us a rallying speech about the state of readiness of the Special Boat Units in the 21st century and his outstanding crews, who made our event the most successful event that I have ever been involved with!
Maj. General Roy, Commanding General of the Joint Task Force Civil Support at Fort Eustis made us feel right at home with the wonderful welcome speech he gave at the Lakeside restaurant at Fort Eustis. Thank you General, it meant a lot to us old vets!
I’ll have more to say about the event, and those who made it happen in the very near future while I gather the pictures and thoughts I have. But here are some pics for now.
Regards, Dennis Ambruso
(Click image to view details.)
Slideshow from Michael Hebert,”Riverine Reporter” for the U.S. Army’s 458th Transportation co., (PBR) Vietnam Veterans Assoc., and Owner/Operator of the “Miss Hampton II” tour boat in Hampton, VA:
Slideshow from Michael Hebert,”Riverine Reporter” for the U.S. Army’s 458th Transportation co., (PBR) Vietnam Veterans Assoc., and Owner/Operator of the “Miss Hampton II” tour boat in Hampton, VA: https://photos.app.goo.gl/zaNNrzIPnUXO0pLp2
Sunday evening , Sept 20, 2015, at the Pelican Marina, Elizabeth City, North Carolina. PBR’s 721 and 6927 are all set to get underway at 08:00 Monday morning! Gamewardens, MMCS, Bill Ferguson and his wife Nancye stopped by for some refreshments and to wish us a safe journey!
The following are current pics taken this evening!
Today marks a small historical event not seen in some time here on the East Coast, when there will be two (2) PBR’s on the same river! 🙂 Dave Pizzoferrato is trailering his PBR 6927 down here from Richmond, Ohio to the Pelican Marina here in Elizabeth City, NC today, to join up with PBR 721 on the Pasquotank River.
Monday we will be taking both boats from Elizabeth City, NC. up through the Dismal swamp canal to the Elizabeth river, then past the Portsmouth Naval shipyard and the Norfolk Naval base, to the Crown Plaza hotel in Hampton, Virginia for our Joint US Army and US Navy, PBR combat crewman reunion!
Dave and I have been working on the event for over a year, not only for the reunion , but to get our two PBR’s in the water on the same river! I hope we will get some good pictures of the event to pass on to you all, next weekend perhaps!