Broward Council Members and Friends
It's been a busy time since our last newsletter in early April. We started with our Council hosting our annual Easter Egg Hunt for Coast Guard families at Coast Guard Station Fort Lauderdale on Saturday, April 8th. Even though we had to delay the start of the hunt a little due to an accident that blocked much of I-595 eastbound that affected the arrival of the families, the weather cooperated and we had a great turnout. Shelley Beck did a great job coordinating the event, Charlie and Erwin once again tended the grill, and Marianne and I took care of eggs, games, and prizes. A special thanks to Brad Fitzgerald and the Fitzgerald Group for making a significant cash donation to defray the cost of the event.
That was followed soon thereafter by Fleet Week 2017. A last minute change in the Navy's ship deployment schedules resulted in the USS NEW YORK being the only Navy ship participating along with a contingent of US Marines from Camp Lejeune, but the Coast Guard stepped up and added the buoy tender USCGC JOSHUA APPLEBY along with the USCGC FORWARD and our own adopted unit Fast Response Cutter USCGC MARGARET NORVELL. From the "All Hands" opening ceremonies on May 1st, held this year on the Riverwalk in Esplanade Park in Downtown Fort Lauderdale, through the final events on May 6th, Broward County Council members stepped up and played key volunteer roles in the Broward Navy Days organization. While attendance was down at our Junior Officer Party at Briny's due to the reduction in ships, the Coast Guard JOs filled in and made it a great event. There was also an "upset" during the annual Resolve Marine Damage Control Olympics competition, where the crew of our own MARGARET NORVELL, the smallest unit in the competition, beat all competitors. Great job my LT Pannetta and her crew. Finally, a number of our members assisted by volunteering to sell soda and water and Council coins during Fleet Week to raise additional funds for our programs. While the crowds of visitors were smaller, we were able to bring in over $1000 that will go to support our programs. A special thanks to Larry Ott and his employer for once again donating the soda and water, along with others who donated supplies or their time and helped out at this and many other Fleet Week events.
Due to the Easter Egg Hunt and Fleet Week events, we did not hold our usual April and May dinners, but our final Council dinner before the summer break will be on Thursday, June 8th. Joe Farrell, CEO of Resolve Marine, will be our guest speaker. In addition to hearing about Joe's distinguished career in the marine salvage industry, he will also be filling us in on a recent special presentation he made to Senator McCain for his service aboard the USS ORISKANY during the Vietnam War. I look forward to a big turnout for this event.
While Council events will slow down for the summer months, we will be bidding farewell to the CO's/OINC at Changes of Command for four of our adopted units, starting with BMC Strope at the Aids to Navigation Team on June 1st followed by LT Ketchum at Station Fort Lauderdale on June 16th, CDR Frede at the TACLET South on July 7th, and CAPT Lutes at the Air Station on July 21st. We wish they and their families well as they move on to their next assignments, and welcome their reliefs into the Council family.
Joe and Marianne Giambrone will also represent us at the Navy League National Convention in Milwaukee in June. Joe has been nominated to continue as a National Director for the Navy League, and also to serve as one of the National Vice Presidents, and Marianne will be present to accept our Distinguished Council award for 2016. That recognition only comes from the hard work of our Board and members, so as well get closer to 2018 it will be time to put together our slate of officers and Board for next year. Please let me know if you are interested in stepping up and taking a stronger role in our Council's leadership.
I hope everyone has a safe and enjoyable summer. As always, please feel free to contact me at 718-619-7402 or at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any ideas on what our Council should be doing to make your membership more valuable to you.
CAPT, US Coast Guard Retired