Friday, December 04, 2009

November 2009 by Charles Brecheisen

Greetings Altair Crew.

ALTAIR BRANSON REUNION: Shipmates are still talking about the wonderful reunion in Branson, MO. Dick Stader and his crew did a superb job!

ALTAIR SHIPMATES: Please welcome aboard JJ Kennedy, SN, 1962-62, Bergenfield, NJ

ALTAIR SHIPMATE PASSING: Tom Planes informed me of the passing of Allen D. Post, MMC 1962-1964. Shipmate post passed Oct. 18 due to cancer. Our condolences to the Post family. The Post family can be reached at:

Allen D. Post Family
315 30th. Avenue West, Apt. B-303
Bradenton, FL 34205

FINANCES: The beginning cash balance was $1136.15 and the savings balance was $1820.99 for a total of $2957.14. There was no income from dues. The total income from the donations for the Hospitality Room and the Auction was $2965.00. Total Reunion expenses were $963.28. The income balance (receipts minus expenses) was $2001.72. This income balance was put into the savings account bringing the savings total to $3822.71. Coupled with the cash on hand, the total Altair monies total $4958.86. If any shipmate would like a detailed accounting of reunion expenses, please contact me at cmbaltairaks32 [at]


All for now. Please contact me with any questions or comments at cmbaltairaks32 [at]

Best Regards To All.........Charles

Sunday, November 29, 2009

USS Altair Remembered by Tom Planes

She wasn’t much to look at but like most homely ladies she had a heart big as all out doors and a need to be loved. Even on her best days she could never compare in looks with a slick destroyer or a behemoth bird farm but oh my, she was a worker. She could keep up a steady 15 knots and churn along not missing a beat while the sixth fleet came along side to sample her wares. Like back street lovers with a brief kiss from high line to high line and a promise of more to come.

That crew in the early sixties she loved the most they took her from unfit for sea duty to proudly showing the red and white E’s for excellence. With paint, sweat and hours of work even though they cursed her at times their was love in the heart of all who served in her. The old girl showed her appreciation by never letting her boys down and always returning them to Barcelona where she could rest and they could play.

As she sat in the bone yard in Texas awaiting the searing torches that would tear her to pieces. Ripping her right down to her keel where she began. That steel back bone that stood true through thousands of miles of storms, cold and heat. From the battle for Okinawa to her life in the Atlantic and Med she had had a wonderful life and reflected on it.

She recalled the stormy passing through Cape Hatteras in early 60, bobbing around like a cork on a string under tow from a sea going tug. It was embarrassing not to be able to rely on her own turbines to make this trip to the Brooklyn yards. In the yards however she began to renew her strength. CWO Goodson was breathing a new life into her engine room changes in her evaporators meant she would never be with out fresh water. New nozzles in her turbines meant better underway speed control.

The deck apes (funny how she never thought of them as monkeys) they were always so dedicated to their work fighting rust and keeping her top side in ship shape. The electric wenches and all her rigging under their supervision were put in perfect working order. Her store keeps had a place for everything and everything in place mostly.

Then came the sea trial she was a little nervous with a new untried crew heading to Cuba with stops in Jamaica. Her first shakedown in the fifties was to Cuba also. Just before that she had been renamed the Altair. She wondered how many plank owners are still around and how many even remember her. They were a fine group of seamen. She was sure most of this crew would be career sailors.

The shakedown went well the men performed outstanding with their first replenishment drills. Soon she was back in Norfolk awaiting orders to deploy to the Med. When the word was passed to single up and she got underway she virtually trembled with excitement. She was not sure if it was a bad shaft bearing or the crew’s anticipation of liberty in Barcelona. The night before arriving in Spain she knew it was the crew. The entire crew had comedown with channel fever and was wide awake the vibration from all that energy was electric.

While her view of Barcelona was limited from her birth at the pier near Barceloneta she could still see the Ramblas a promenade lined with sycamore trees festooned with flower shops and kiosk where you could buy confections, news papers and perfume. The ever present cry at an Andalucian pitch of the lottery lady “ Para Hoy Equal” brought dreams of riches.

She could smell more of Barcelona than she could see. An off shore breeze sent a bouquet of fragrances that covered the bay like a warm blanket. The pine sent from the crest of Tibidabo mingled with the smell of flower, and the food being cooked along the Ramblas. The perfume worn by the ladies of the night was like the cherry on top of a sundae. She loved being in Barcelona it was a time to relax and repair between logreps.

There was a love affair with Spain that was so deep it lacked explanation. There was so much emotion that flowed within her hull. The heartbreak and anger brought on by a Dear John letter. The joy of announced birth over shadowed with the sadness of not being there. The collective glee of anticipation when the word is passed for liberty or mail call. The explosive anger with shouts and sometimes blows when a shipmate is caught stealing or a line was crossed that started as a joke but ended with fury and blood.

As much as she loved Barcelona she loved the open sea more. Supplying the sixth fleet was her job and her heart was quickened by it. To be out there steaming true in her little corner of the world, the Mediterranean. This is what she was built for and yearned to do. To hear the whine of the electric wenches and the shout of the deck crews as they send net after net of cargo to what ever Romeo ship came along side. The roar of the Sikorski and smell of spent aviation fuel at her flight deck. She recalled how skilled the pilots were off loading lading to other ships in the fleet. She was the first to try this form of resupply and met the challenge with open arms.

Friday, November 27, 2009

"Old Sailors" received from Jim Braydon author unknown

Old sailors sit and chew the fat 'bout how things use to be, of the things they've seen and places they've been, when they ventured out to sea.

They remember friends from long ago and the times they had back then, of the money they've spilled and the beer they've swilled in their days as sailing men.

Their lives are lived in days gone by with thoughts that forever last, of Dixie cups hats and bell bottom blues, and the good times in their past.

They recall long nights with a moon so bright far out on a lonely sea, and thoughts they had as youthful lads, when their lives were unbridled and free.

They know so well how their hearts would swell when the flag fluttered proud and free, and the stars and stripes made such beautiful sights as they plowed through an angry sea.

They talk of the bread Ole Cookie would bake and the shrill of the boson's pipe, and how the salt spray fell like sparks out of hell when a storm struck in the night.

They remember mates already gone who forever hold a spot in the stories of old when sailors were bold and lubbers a pitiful lot.

They rode their ships through many a storm when the sea was showing it's might, and the mighty waves might be digging their graves as they sailed on through the night.

They speak of nights in a bawdy house somewhere on a foreign shore, and the beer they'd downed as they gathered around cracking jokes with a busty whore.

Their sailing days are gone away, never more will they cross the brow, but they have no regrets for they know they've been blessed 'cause they honored their sacred vow.

Their numbers grow less with each passing day as their chits in this life are called, but they've nothing to lose for they've paid their dues and they'll sail with their shipmates again.

I've heard them say before getting underway that there is still some sailing to do, and they'll exclaim with a grin that their ship has come in, and the Lord is commanding the crew.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

All Hands USS Altair AKS 32

From: 2009 Reunion Chairman
Subj: Veterans Day Message

I waited until today to send this out and Charles I hope I am not asking too much of you to forward it on for me today on this day set aside for all of us Veterans. I want to say thank you to all of you out there, both Shipmates and wives/girl friends and invited guest who came to Branson and celebrated another years reunion and harmony and unity, and to tell you that it was my great pleasure to serve as chairman for this years reunion, and to see each and every one of my old shipmates and wives and friends and to get to spend some time together with you, brought me a great amount of joy and I look forward eagerly to next years reunion in Nashville, where we can once again enjoy the camaraderie of old friends and shipmates. HAPPY VETERANS DAY TO EACH AND EVERY ONE OF YOU, and may you always have FAIR WINDS AND FOLLOWING SEAS. On another note I want to tell you that all that in the November Issue of the FRA magazine, there is a guy looking for crew members from the USS Marias, Aucilla and Altair who is working on a book about all of us stationed in or visited Barcelona from 1951 through 1987 and willing to share your recollections of life aboard ship, impressions of Barcelona, or related photos. If you are contact Xavier Theros at

I have not contacted him yet but I plan on it. Once again, Happy Veterans Day To All.

Dick Stader

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

October 2009 by Charles Brecheisen

BRANSON REUNION: Words escape me! Dick Stader did a fantastic job bringing together the reunion. It was a blast! Everything went well; the show was great, the food was good, the service was good and we all had a great time. There was not a dry eye during the Memorial Service. It was great to see all the shipmates. Dick Braun has photos taken at the reunion on the Altair Smugmug site, so please visit and enjoy.

2010 REUNION: Joe Basso and the reunion committee have selected Nashville as the next Altair reunion site. More information will follow as available.

FINANCIAL: The beginning cash balance was $1026.15 with receipts of $110.00 and no expenses leaving a balance of $1136.15. The beginning savings balance was $1818.69 with income of $2.30 leaving a balance of $1820.99. The total cash balance is $2957.14.

SHIPMATES: Please welcome aboard the following new Altair shipmates:

R. Wayne Whittset, YN1, 1954-1955, Hampton, VA
Nicholas T. Viorel, CS2, 1954-1955, Los Angeles, CA
Lawrence A. Savino, SA, 1955, Mahopac, NY
David Jordan, DC3, 1953-1954, Chattanooga, TN
William N. Moynihan, ME3, 1955, Hinsdale, IL
Ronald C. Hewitt, YNSN, 1960-1961, Des Moines, IA
Everitt Sinks, EMFN, 1955-1956, Willow Springs, IL

There was one shipmate that served 6 months on the Altair, transferred off and wanted nothing more to do with the Altair!

SHIPMATES PASSING: The following Altair Shipmates passed:

Norman H. Wuestefeld, RM2, Clinton, CT; passed 2002
Francis O. Ridge, GM1, Staunton, VA; passed 2007; Pearl Harbor Survivor!

All for now. As usual, please do NOT reply to this email as it will be automatically deleted. Please us cmbaltairaks32 [at]

Best Regards To All..........Charles

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Video of 1964 Med. tour and shore leaves.

ENS. Mark Simon provided us with videos that he took while aboard the Altair in 1964 - 1965. They can be found at During his tour the Altair lost a Helo at sea and Mark was filming at the time. This scene is at the 4 Minute and 28 second mark of Part 4.

Mark was using a Super 8mm camera to film his travels. Then recently recorded the movie film onto VHS tape. He was kind enough to send me the tape and I converted it to DVD and to PC format. Split it down into 10 minute segments and then placed the segments on the photo album web site.

Thanks again Mark!

Saturday, October 03, 2009

September 2009 by Charles Brecheisen

ALTAIR REUNION: Just a few weeks away!! Dick Stader reminds us that Branson is a casual place. I certainly intent to dress casual.

The beginning September cash balance was $1070.71 with paid dues of $60.00 and expenses of $104.56 leaving a cash on-hand balance of $1026.15. Expenses included paper, print ink and stamps. The savings account balance was $1818.69 leaving a total cash balance of $2844.84.

NEW SHIPMATES: Welcome aboard Robert A. Belaire, Claremont, NH, IC3 1963/64; Michael P. Buckey, ENFN, Grafton, OH 1963; Arlen W. Jones, LT (Helo Pilot), 1962, Virginia Beach, VA; and, William R. Birt, RM3, 1963-1965, Live Oak, FL.

SHIPMATES PASSING: We were notified of the following shipmates passing:

John B. Dudley, Captain, 1962; passed August 6, 2006
Donald Dufresne, SK3, 1957; passed September 25, 2009
Oliver F. Midgette, CDR XO, 1963-1965; passed June 11, 2002
Donald J. Cosby, LTJG, 1963-1965, Passed December, 1994

Ever wonder about some of those old navy ratings and what they referred to? Try

RELATIVES IN THE CIVIL WAR? If you think, or know you had relatives that participated in the Civil War, either for the North or the South, please visit and you will visit the entire 128 volume set of the "Official Records of the Civil War." There is an index that can be referenced.

All for now. See ya' at the reunion. Please do NOT reply to this email but use cmbaltairaks32 [at] for any questions of comments.

Best Regards To ALL..........Charles

Monday, September 28, 2009

August 2009 by Charles Brecheisen

As I was sitting in the den reading my latest copy of "SEAPOWER", published by the Navy League, I realized that I had forgotten to do the August monthly report.

We have had over 70 Altair shipmates pay dues this year!!!! Thanks!!

FINANCIAL: The starting balance was $1147.40 cash and $1818.69 in the savings account. We had income of $40 and expenses of $116.69 leaving a balance of $2889.40. Expenses were stamps and envelops to mail reunion information to the no-email shipmates.

That's all for now. If you need more info about the reunion please contact me at cmbaltairaks32 [at] or Dick Stader at Dickandterry5 [at]

Per my previous memos, Shipmate Bob Apple's computer was breached and some strange email sent to most all the shipmatesfor the past several months. Guard your computer!!! and, be careful forwarding mass addressed emails. Using the Bcc line will help avert stealing addresses. I can email more info about using the Blind Carbon Copy address line. Just let me know.

All for now. Please do not respond to this email but use my address with any comments or questions.

Best Regards To All.........Charles

July 2009 by Charles Brecheisen

ALTAIR SHIPMATES: Three new shipmates came on board in July. They are:

Jack E. Lewis, YN3, 1956-1957, Huntington, IN
Robert L. Knapp, SK2, 1961-1963, Taylor, MI
Michael J. Metro, SN, 1955-1957, East Hampton, CT


SHIPMATE PASSING: Billy A. McDade, BT1, 1954-1955, 10 years ago.

The beginning July balance was $1147.40 in cash and $1816.43 in savings for a total of $2963.83. Income of $2.26 from the savings account and no expenses for a total of $1147.40 in cash and $1818.69 in savings for a total of $2966.09.

If you need to contact the reunion chairman, Dick Stader, you can use dickandterry5 [at] or

Dick Stader, 1511 84th. St., Kenosha, WI 53143 262-654-9202

The reunion contact is Pam Brown 417-338-4048; she has requested deposits by August 23rd. for the reunion. Please contact her for more cost info.

Please remember that Dick has requested $25 per person ($50 per couple) help on the hospitality room. Please contact Dick for additional info. We really want it to be nice!

All for now. If you need more info please contact me at cmbaltairaks32 [at]

Best Wishes TO All...........Charles

Altair Reunion, Branson, MO

I talked to John Thompson a couple of weeks ago and he will be doing the auction again this year. John did a great job for us at the last reunion and raised a lot of money. Thanks John! Please bring any Altair mementos, relics, paper, etc. to the next reunion and we can add some needed dollars to the Altair Association bank account.

In my first letter about the reunion, I asked for a $25 "per person" donation to cover the hospitality room expenses for drinks and snacks, etc. Some of you sent me $25, and, thank you, but showing two people coming to the reunion. If a couple will be coming to the reunion, then $50 would cover both. We want this to be an extra nice hospitality room, so please help!

If you are trying to respond to Dick Stader, he can be reached at:

dickandterry5 [at]

Dick Stader
1511 84th. Street
Kenosha, WI 53143

Or, if you are trying to reach me: cmbaltairaks32 [at]

Best Regards To All..........Charles

Thanks......Dick Stader

Altair News

Greetings Altair Crew. Here is some timely news:

George Kirchner reports:

"The NASA Lunar Lander has been named ALTAIR! See below for the web site; Best Regards, George"

John McDaniel reports of receiving the Capt. Schumacher photographs:

"Charles-Enjoyed the photos that Captain Schumacher had taken. Brings back a lot of fond memories of our days on the Altair.

Not sure if you knew but at the onset of WWII Captain Schumacher (then an Ensign) was in command of PT Boat PT-32. This PT boat was in PT Boat Squadron 3 in Manila Bay in the Philippnes. (Same hull number as Altair)

Web site is the old Asiatic Fleet Order of Battle in which Ensign Schumacher is reflected as CO of PT-32.

Web site is a narrative of some of the actions of the PT Boats at the beginning of WWII and reflects Captain Schumacher and PT-32's role in some of these.

VADM John D. Bulkeley, then a LT was in charge of this squadron. VADM Bulkeley had quite a career, he was the one who evacuated GEN MacArthur from Corregidor, was awarded the Medal of Honor, and was gentleman who cut the water supply lines in Gitmo, Cuba when Castro was acting up. The USS Buckeley DDG-84 was named in VADM Buckeley's honor. He was also the gentleman who recruited John F. Kennedy into the PT Boat community.

I retired from the Navy in 1982. I spent my last tour of duty with the Sub-Board of Inspection and Survey here in Norfolk. There was also another Sub-Board on the West Coast and the Admiral who was in charge was VADM Bulkeley. I was fortunate enough to meet and work with and travel with him on some inspections.

Would you please share this with the Altair Crew?

Thank you and best regards,

John O. McDaniel
Norfolk, VA"

June 2009 by Charles Brecheisen


It's hard to believe that it is already July. Here is E. TX the "dog days of August" arrived about 3 weeks ago. Very hot and no rain.

ALTAIR CAPS: Joe Basso has purchased a supply of Altair caps which may be purchased from him. Joe can be reached at 732-441-1077 or email jomapakg032 [at] Joe will also bring a supply of Altair caps to the reunion in October.

ALTAIR FINANCIAL: The beginning June balance was $1127.40 in cash and $1816.43 in the savings account for a total of $2943.83. Income in June was $20.00 with no expenses for a total $1147.40 in cash and $1816.43 in savings for a total of $2963.83.

ALTAIR SHIPMATES: New shipmates on board are Jack Land, SA, Wyoming, MI; Bruce Holton, YN3, Dunedin, FL; Clarence R. Keagle, SN, Neoga, IL; Pedro Rivera-Torres, SK3, Guaynabo, PR; and, Harold L. Guzdziol, IC3, Clinton Township, MI. I show a total of 451 active shipmates on my mailing list!!!!!!!!!

ALTAIR SHIPMATES PASSING: Received information that Theophile C. Haerinck, SN, 1955 passed away in August 1994; and, Marion L. Hendrick, SKC, 1954-1957 passed away July 4, 1999.

REUNION: If you need any more information about our next reunion, please contact me at cmbaltairaks32 [at]

Please DO NOT reply to this email as it will be automatically deleted.

I hope every one has a happy and safe 4th of July!

Best Regards To All...........Charles

Monday, July 13, 2009

Shipmate Passing

Dick Stader called me with news of a shipmate passing: Mark Sutton, SH2, 1957-1959 passed away Wednesday, July 8. I spent a lot of my hard earned money at the Altair ship's store for candy and cigarettes with Mark and remember him well. Our sincerest condolences to the Sutton family.

Mark Sutton Family
5580 Stonehaven Drive
Virginia Beach, VA 23464-6825


Wednesday, April 01, 2009

March 2009 by Charles Brecheisen

FINANCIAL: The beginning March balance was $2849.64 in ready cash and the savings account. Income was $10 and zero expenses leaving a balance of $2859.64.

SHIPMATES: Bruce Davis located the following new Altair shipmates:

William A. Erickson, Miramar Beach, FL; LTJG, 1961-1963
Colin E. Shultz, Lancaster, PA; SK3, 1964-1966
Harry O. Bacon, Ellabell, GA; DK2, 1955
Raymond B. Allen, Camden, NC; SK1, 1953-1955
Julio Possenti, Port Orange, FL; SN,
Thomas G. Lakies, Traverse City, MI; SN, 1960-1961
Eugene S. Gigee, Westfield, PA; SN, 1960-1962
Paul N. Buchman, Queensburg, NY; ENS, 1953-1954
Robert J. Wolansky, North Arlington, NJ; SN 1953-1955

SHIPMATES PASSING: Ronald F. Spina, SKSN and Edward L. Kantner, SN.

Please reply to cmbaltairaks32 [at]

Best Regards To All......Charles

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Shipmates Family Requesting Photos

Daniel Nocivelli served on the Altair 1955-1956 as a SKG1. He passed away in 2002. His granddaughter Helen would like any information or copies of any pictures that any shipmate might have about her grandfather.

You can email her at machic13 at comcast dot net or send her snail mail at:

Helen Nocivelli 66 Verne Street, Brockton, MA 02301

Any help will be greatly appreciated!

Best Regards To All..........Charles

Sunday, March 01, 2009

February 2009 by Charles Brecheisen

Greetings Altair Shipmates;

First of all, KUDOS to Martin Summann for the great looking Altair web site! KUDOS to Dick Braun for the Altair Blog site, Great job!

SHIPMATE PASSING: Bruce Davis reports the following Shipmates passing:

Thomas J. Cuddahy, MM3, 1953
Arnold Brooks, SN, 1953
Clarence Dean Bruce, SN, 1953
William A. Cundy, CS2

NEW ALTAIR SHIPMATES: Bruce Davis is doing a wonderful job of tracking down Altair shipmates! High KUDOS to Bruce. Following is a list of 1953 Commissioning Crew shipmates that Bruce tracked down:

Anthony Riniti, SN, LaVerne, CA
Richard H. Salinger, MM1, Reading, PA
Edward M. Beakey, SN, Dallas, TX
Mrs. Roseann Cundy (Widow of William A. Cundy)
John Czarnecki, CS3, Harrison, MI
Franklin N. Frederick, GM3, Hanover, PA
Lloyd D. Green, SN, Galax, VA
Donald A. Hastings, HM3, Jefferson, ME
John E. Hawkins, SN, Aberdeen, MS
William T. Hurd, SN, Seal Beach, CA
Glover B. Jones, BTG3, Arlington, TX
Gerard Lavoie, SN, Nashua, NH
Lowell T. McDaniel, EM3, Easely, SC
Charles A. McIver, EMFN, Cathedral City, CA
Ambrose G. O'Neill, FA, Randallstown, PA
Stanley Stancavage, Greenfield Township, PA
Miguel Valencia, SK1, Alexandria, VA

ALTAIR CREW: I show 434 crew members on my lists, but only 431 with good addresses; and from 45 different states! SO FAR A TOTAL OF 61 SHIPMATES HAVE PAID THEIR $10 YEARLY DUES!! Many thanks!!!

FINANCIAL: The beginning on hand cash balance was $1105.59 with income of $150.00 and expenses of $220.19 leaving a ballance of $1035.40. Expenses were yearly web site payment, stamps, copies, etc.
The beginning savings balance was $1813.00 and a short month income of $1.24 giving a balance of $1814.24. The total cash balance was $2849.64.

As usual, please DO NOT reply to this email. Use


Best Wishes To All.........Charles

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Reunion and Altair Caps

Greetings Altair Shipmates.

Is there any shipmate that has not received the previously attached information about our next reunion in Branson, MO? Information was sent as a Word attachment and a PDF attachment. If you need a printed copy, please contact me at and I will get you a copy in the mail. I have mailed out about 140 snail mail copies to the shipmates that do not have email or have requested a printed copy.

Joe Basso called me about getting the shipmates on board with Altair caps. I bought one about 7-8 years ago from a company in FL for about $40!! Yes, I said $40 as he had never done an AKS before. Anyway, Joe has contacted a couple of cap manufacturers and can get them done a heckuva cheaper than that! What would you like on the caps? My cap has "USS ALTAIR" in gold as the top line; then is an outline of a store ship in gray; the bottom line reads "AKS-32" in gold. It is quite striking, but that is also 3 lines of embroidery. Joe wants your input as to what you like on the caps. You can contact Joe at
732-441-1077 on the phone or at via email.
We could also take a little supply to the reunion.

Best Regards To All..........Charles

Reunion and Altair Caps

Greetings Altair Shipmates.

Is there any shipmate that has not received the previously attached information about our next reunion in Branson, MO? Information was sent as a Word attachment and a PDF attachment. If you need a printed copy, please contact me at and I will get you a copy in the mail. I have mailed out about 140 snail mail copies to the shipmates that do not have email or have requested a printed copy.

Joe Basso called me about getting the shipmates on board with Altair caps. I bought one about 7-8 years ago from a company in FL for about $40!! Yes, I said $40 as he had never done an AKS before. Anyway, Joe has contacted a couple of cap manufacturers and can get them done a heckuva cheaper than that! What would you like on the caps? My cap has "USS ALTAIR" in gold as the top line; then is an outline of a store ship in gray; the bottom line reads "AKS-32" in gold. It is quite striking, but that is also 3 lines of embroidery. Joe wants your input as to what you like on the caps. You can contact Joe at
732-441-1077 on the phone or at via email.
We could also take a little supply to the reunion.

Best Regards To All..........Charles

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Reunion 2009--More Info

Greetings Altair Shipmates. Here is a bit of reunion info. There will be much more to follow in the next few days.

Branson Reunion Information Site (click here)

Dick Stader's FL phone number is 239-985-9608 and not the number listed.

Branson Reunion Registration Form (click here)

This is a web site put up by the reunion group in Branson, MO

Dick Stader's email address is

As usual, please do not reply to this email. Use

My email address on this site has been compromised (stolen) and I am getting emails from myself to myself that I did not originate. I am considering changing addresses on this site. I could blacklist myself, but then would not have an email copy of what I sent from this site. Oh well.............

More reunion info to follow in a few days..........

Best Regards To All..........Charles

Monday, February 02, 2009

January 2009 by Charles Brecheisen

We are having a mild winter here in East Texas with no snow and only a bit of sleet. But, February is always our worst month for weather.

ALTAIR SHIPMATES PASSING: I received information about two Altair Shipmates passing; Walter Grau, CWO1 1953-1954; and Theodore A. Vietje, FPG3 1953-1954.

NEW ALTAIR SHIPMATES: The following Altair Shipmates came aboard in January:

Robert G. Lough, SK3, 1953-1956; resides in Clarksburg, WV
John E. Keyes, MM3, 1953-1954; resides in Cleves, OH
Cecil G. Haight, EM3, 1953-1954; resides in San Jose, CA
Hoyt F. Richardson, SN, 1953-1955; resides in Ulrichsville, OH
L. Ray Marchant, SK2, 1960-1961; resides in Savannah, GA
Lewis E. Ryan, RMC, 1953-1954; 89 years young and resides in Sturgis, MS


FINANCIAL: WOW!!! We have 54 dues paying shipmates!! This is a world record! There was 30 that paid in December and their dollars are reflected in the December totals. There were 24 shipmates paying dues in January. The starting cash balance was $910.00 with cash receipts of $320.00 and expenses of $124.41 leaving a cast balance of $1105.59. The saving account balance is $1813.00 leaving a total balance of $2918.59. Expenses were mainly postage, PDF software and printing.

ALTAIR REUNION: More reunion information will be forthcoming very soon. I know we are all looking forward to the October reunion in Branson, Missouri!

All for now. Please do not reply to this email!! If you wish to contact me, plus use cmbaltairaks32 @ fastmail . us

Best Regards To All.........Charles

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Changes to Newsletter Distribution

Greetings Altair Shipmates.

First of all, let me thank more than 40 (to date) dues paying shipmates that support the entire crew with their yearly dues. Some have sent in dues for several years too. Thanks!

My shipmate list has 414 crew members of which 305 have email and 102 have no email. I show a few shipmates with bad email/or addresses. When I do a full mailing of the double side (8 pages) Altair Newsletter, the approx. total cost is over $500 which includes printing, envelopes, stamps, labels, ind, etc. Of course less pages, less printing cost. Plus, there are 2500 physical operations to fold (the printer does the stapling), insert, attach 2 mailing labels, stamp and seal which Lillie and I do. The total cost per mailing the newsletter is approx. $1.25 each to cover over 400 shipmates. I am proposing to email the newsletter as a PDF attachment to the 305 shipmates that have email. A PDF reader is a FREE download from Adobe, and others. I receive quite a few emails with a PDF attachments which I download to my desktop (so I can find them) and just double click on it and the Adobe reader opens the file. IT WORKS GREAT! The other 102 shipmates with no email will get the newsletter via snail mail. This will save at least $300 plus! I can purchase "docudesk", or another PDF conversion software for under #30. I have tested this method with several shipmates and it works fine! You just need a PDF reader.

The chairman of our 2009 reunion in Branson, MO is Dick Stader. Information has already been sent via email and snail mail to all the shipmates about the reunion There will be additional information to be sent, forms to be filled out and returned to Dick; and, I will be sending this information as a PDF file attachment to your email. A mailing of only 2 sheets of paper to cover all the shipmates would cost approx. $.64 each totaling $250. Doing this will allow me to mail only 102 copies to shipmates with email and save dollars.

PDF IS ON THE WAY! And, it is the way to go!

If you do not want to receive email with attachments please let me know and the info will be snail mailed.

Comments are welcome and please reply to cmbaltairaks32@fastmail.

Best Regards To All..........Charles

2009 Reunion Information

Greetings Altair Shipmates.

Our reunion Chairman Dick Stader has announced that our next USS Altair reunion will be in Branson, Missouri, starting Friday, October 23, 2009 through Sunday, October 25, 2009 and departing Monday October 26, 2009. If there is enough shipmate interest, the reunion could start on Thursday, October 22, 2009.


Dick needs to plan for hotels, shows, etc.

Dick can be reached at dickandterry5 @ (you will have type in the email address to prevent spamming)

Or use the following address:

Dick Stader
1511 84th. Street
Kenosha, WI 53143

Please do not respond to this email; but contact Dick.

Best Regards To All.........Charles ( cmbaltairaks32 @ )

December 2008 by Charles Brecheisen

HAPPY NEW YEAR! Let's all have a happy, prosperous and a very healthy 2009.

NEW SHIPMATE: Please welcome aboard Allen Lambert, SN, 1960-1962.
Allen resides in Ft. Worth, Texas. WELCOME ABOARD Allen!

FINANCIAL: Beginning cash balance was $507.62 with income from dues of $400.00 and an adjustment of $2.38 leaving a cash balance of $910.00. The amount in the Altair savings account is $1813.00 leaving a total balance of $2723.00.

REUNION: We are waiting for the reunion chairman and crew to report the selection.

Thanks to the 30 plus shipmates that paid 2009 dues in December!!

All for now. Please contact me at with any comments or questions. Please do not reply to this email.

Best Regards To All.........Charles

Commander George J. Largess (Ret) passed away

Dear Webmasters of the USS Altair Website,

I hope this is the best way to pass along this information. My father, Commander George J. Largess USN (Ret), who commanded the Altair after her commissioning in Baltimore in 52, passed away on December 11 2008 after a short illness. He'd been doing great at the age of 91 but his kidneys began to fail and he declined quickly. He was very proud of his role in the Altair's history and frequently talked about her.

I'd love to hear from anyone who served with him who has any memories to share. And he'll be buried at Arlington on Wednesday, 28 January, at 0900 with full military honors-- all are most welcome to come, we'd love to have some of his shipmates there.

If anyone would like to reach me for more information I'm at _Largitas@aol.com_ ( and again, would love to touch base with anyone from the ship. Thank you,

Bill Largess