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Celebrating a grand old gal

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by alleyallen, Jun 20, 2006.

  1. alleyallen

    alleyallen Guest

    OK, OK, I'll admit I'm an attention whore, but I wanted to use post No. 2,000 to give out a little shout to a grand old lady, the battleship Wisconsin. Portrayed below and in my sig, I served on board the Wisky for only 270+ days in 1990-1991, but in that time I learned a measure of respect and love for the Navy and for that ship.


    There's been lots said about battleships over the years, but there's something about the Iowa-class vessels built in the 1940s. Strong, sleek, very fast (for a surface ship of its size) and incredibly powerful, she inspired fear in 21st century enemies using early 20th century weapons.

    In my short time aboard her, she had some memorable highlights:
    * Set a speed record for battleships in crossing the Atlantic (four and a half days).
    * Nailed targets that were several miles inland during Desert Storm.
    * Fired some of the first Tomahawks of the war.
    * Actually had Iraqi troops surrender to one of her unmanned spotter planes.

    I was there the day USS Wisconsin was decommissioned and I remember crying. I've only seen her from afar since then (glimpsed while she was resting in the Philly shipyard) but the day I have the chance to travel back to Virginia, I have every intention of stopping at the Nauticus museum to see her, and to touch her wooden decks again.

    If you have a family member who served on board a ship, ask them how they feel about their vessel, especially if they helped commission or decommission her, or serve on her in wartime. I bet you'll hear a similar tale of affection and love.

    Sorry for the sappiness, but thanks for reading.
  2. OTD

    OTD Well-Known Member

    My father in law was a plankowner of his WWII destroyer. A couple times I got him to talk about it and it was great hearing about it.

    I've never been on a battleship--maybe I'll make it to the Missouri one of these days.
  3. Idaho

    Idaho Active Member

    I thought this thread was about Spnited's wife.

    But not a bad P2K, alley

    Carry on.
  4. doubledown68

    doubledown68 Active Member

    Always wondered this: why are ships referred to as she? Just because?
  5. alleyallen

    alleyallen Guest

    I'm sure there's a history beyond the phrase but it escapes me at the moment. However, I'd venture part of it has to do with male sailors becoming emotionally bonded to the ship. Besides, when you're out to sea, it's comforting to think of a ship as a living creature that takes care of you.
  6. The Duke

    The Duke Member

    Is this some phallic symbol or something?

    That this was a boots thread, sorry!
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