News From Fort Schuyler

May 20, 2001 - Volume 5, No. 19

MARITIME DAY IN THE NATION'S CAPITOL - There is still time to take the AMTRAK Acela down to Washington DC to join the Alumni Association's Washington Chapter for the National Maritime Day Luncheon at the Washington Navy Yard's Officers Club on May 22, commencing at 12:30. According to a newsletter from Chapter President JOHN HANNON, Class of 1977: "Following lunch, we have been invited to join the Military Sealift Command at their annual National Maritime Day Ceremony on the waterfront at the 'Yard' with an MSC vessel as a backdrop. The Chapter will participate in the wreath laying ceremony to commemorate those merchant mariners lost at sea or in war. The ' hour ceremony starts at 14:30 with ship tours to immediately follow the ceremony. Cost is $15 pp. RSVP by COB May 21 to Chapter Treasurer DOLORES MERCIER, Class of 1993 at : (202) 267-0658 or

TOPS IN THE CITY - The Maritime College Rescue Squad has been singled out by The Regional EMS Council of New York City as the "EMS Agency of the Year." According to the Rescue Squad's Faculty Advisor, Chief ERIC GUTTENPLAN, Director of the University Police, the 36-cadet squad was recognized: "For participation in and commitment to the improvement of the emergency medical services system in New York City." Eric accepted the award for the college at a recent Emergency Medical Services Week 2001 banquet. See

IT'S CHEMICAL - On May 9, Professor Emeritus DR. FRED HESS was recognized by the American Chemical Society for 50 years of membership and professional activity with the award of a lapel pin and certificate. The award was presented at a dinner at the Chemist's Club in Manhattan, the HQ of the New York branch of the society. According to Dr. Hess, he "... established the chemistry instruction program at the Maritime College in 1946 and continued his supervision of the program until his retirement in 1986." The Society is at .

GRADUATION GIFT - The Luce Library has received a new DVD player for use in its Reading Room Media Viewing Alcove from a new graduate of the Master's Program, CAPT. SALIL PARKAR. The player, which was given in fond memory of Captain Parkar's late grandfather, Madmusudan Deshmukh, came at an opportune time, since the library has just initiated the purchase of DVD-format materials for its collections.

YET ANOTHER STAR IN THE CLASS OF 1947 - A serendipitous internet query has led to yet another distinguished scholar from the Class of 1947. After years of teaching at Columbia University's Schools of Business and Engineering and Science, Dr. MARTIN K. STARR, "retired" to Winter Park, Florida to become Distinguished Professor of Operations Management at the Crummer Graduate School of Business at Rollins College and Director of its Center for Enterprise Management ( )

FINDING THE REMAINS OF THE GENERAL SLOCUM - According to a PR Newswire item last November, CLIVE CUSSLER, the recipient of the Maritime College's first honorary doctorate, "...announced that his National Underwater & Marine Agency team led by marine surveyor, Ralph Wilbanks, had discovered the remains of the GENERAL SLOCUM, which burned in the East River, New York, June 14, 1904. During an excursion past Manhattan it became engulfed in flames. Before it had grounded on North Brother island, 1021 passengers, most of them women and children, had either burned to death or drowned.

The burned out hulk was later turned into a barge called the MARYLAND. While carrying furnace coke under tow south of Atlantic City it sank in a squall. The Army Corps of Engineers dynamited the hull as a menace to navigation a year later. Though the wreck has often been reported as found by divers, Wilbanks found it buried four feet under the silt. The hulk was identified by recording exact dimensional measurements and the discovery of piles of coke.

Complete story at -

BIG BREAK FOR FUTURE EDITOR - William Henry Rideing (1853 - 1918), a sea-loving Englishman who is remembered as the influential editor of the prestigious North American Review, was given an important boost in his early literary career by the Luce Library's namesake, STEPHEN B. LUCE. In 1878, Captain Luce, one of the country's most persuasive proponents of nautical education and a major force in establishing the New York Nautical School in 1874, arranged to have the twenty-five year old Rideing commissioned to write a major article about the new school aboard the ST. MARY'S. Rideing's lavishly illustrated article on the school appeared in the August 1879 issue of the enormously popular Harper's New Monthly Magazine, launching him on a very successful career. Free reprints of Rideing's article, "The Nautical School 'St. Marys'" [Yes, without an apostrophe] are always available at the Luce Library.

ANOTHER RETIREMENT - The Washington Chapter newsletter reported that "RADM ROBERT NORTH USCG, Class of 1966, recently retired from active duty. A ceremony marking the event was held on 27 April at the Coast Guard based in Alexandria, VA. Many Fort Schuyler alumni were on hand to wish him well as he concluded over 34 years of service in the Coast Guard." More on the ceremony came from TIM FARLEY, Class of 1984.5 "Had the great honor of sitting next to, then visiting with, HAP PARNHAM {Class of 1948] at RADM Robert North's retirement ceremony....RADM North even wove a good yarn together about rowing a monomoy as a cadet and how that experience reflected on the type of teamwork needed to run a large organization, in this case, the Coast Guard. RADM North retired with full military honors and it was quite a show. Cannons booming, flags a waving, silent drill teams drilling ... a very moving experience."

"Saw many Domers including CAPT JIM DE SIMONE, Class of 1973, CAPT BRIA N BASIL, CAPT. JOHN SARUBBI, Class of 1974, CAPT ALLISON ROSS, Class of 1984, JOHN HANNON, Class of 1977, and CHRIS KRUSA, Class of 1962, just to name a few."