One Successful Reunion Ends - Another Begins!

This will be a longer-than- normal column so obtain your beverage of choice and some popcorn and settle in.  Here goes…

   Another successful reunion!  Everything went (about)  on schedule, well, unless you count the ones left behind on our tours…let’s see…we left one person at “The Rock”, two missed the bus in Chinatown and eight missed the boat for the harbor tour.  (Other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play?)  Hopefully, this won’t happen on our cruise next year…if you miss “Ship’s Movement” in one of our Ports of Call, then you’ll have to fly to another country to catch up.

   Our turnout was our second highest at 70 attendees.  We had 74 in New Orleans, but only 37 in Charleston, and we expect 70+ for our 2008 Cruise.  Enclosed you’ll find a Brooke Questionnaire Post Card concerning the cruise.  Since we have to reserve so far in advance, t I thought we should probably have some indication of attendance next year.  The post card thing worked pretty well this last reunion enabling us to reserve the rooms we needed and obtain a great $99 rate. We ended up with about 150 “room-nights”, which is big bucks for most hotels.  As a group, we probably spent $20,000+ during our reunion.

   The cruise will be a little different: We’ve already received one of the best rates for a 7-day cruise, especially since our rate is “all-inclusive” of taxes, gratuities, etc.  The more attendees we have, then the more on-board amenities we’ll earn.  So, please fill out and send in the pre-paid post card enclosed.  It’ll only take a minute, as most who are going, have already decided this past year. 

   After you send in the card, then send in your deposit and registration form to Brian Forrester at Cruise Holidays.  As registrations are received, the ship groups you together in cabins and dinner seating.  The longer you wait, the more unlikely you’ll be in our group seating.  This is one reunion where there probably won’t be any stragglers, unless they pay higher prices for their last minute decision.

   Next item is our financial report and Ship’s Store inventory.  They are printed back-to-back in this issue and are inserted for Brooke members only. If you didn’t receive one, then you are probably not a paid-up member. How ‘bout joining?

   While on membership: During this past reunion, we achieved the triple-digit of 100 members and, in the last two weeks, acquired a few more new members.  Thanks to TC McNamara, Deborah Delany and Rebecca Columbo for joining the Association with their spouses and to Don Geyton (our 100th member), Dan and Vicky Renne (another dual membership), and our latest member, Cdr. James “Stick” Elliott, USN (ret).  Stick was a plankowner who came aboard in 1965 as an SN and departed Brooke  as a Warrant Officer after 6 years aboard. Yes, SIX YEARS! It’s just gotta be some kind of record!    Bravo Zulu Stick! All new membership cards will be mailed out soon after the newsletter hits the mail.

   Another item to mention is, of course, the passing of one of our shipmates, John McNamara.  Tom wrote a fitting article about John in this newsletter.  I can’t add much more to that except to say it was a pleasure to hook-up  with a “Brooklyn-area” shipmate after 40 years. Since we began having these reunions we seem to lose someone every year.  With that said, I’m glad we’re doing what we’re doing and wish we’d started about 20 years ago.

   Next item is about the six Brooke-class ships.  A few weeks ago, a shipmate asked about the post decommissioning of our ships.  I found the article from a few years ago and have reprinted it in this issue. Since we have many more  members now, I thought it was worth repeating.  I’m also reprinting some old POD’s from time to time, space permitting.

   We still have a good inventory in our Ship’s Store, even though we sold 18 Brooke Polo Shirts during the reunion. (I’ll be reordering soon and will increase the order of the more popular blue ones, in all sizes). We have only the DEG/FFG-1 and the FFG-1 ball caps in stock and due to low demand, will probably not reorder the DEG-1 ball cap, which has a 51 minimum.

   Moving on…

   Thanks to all the donations for our raffle, and heavy participation, we took in a record $513.00 at this years’ reunion.  We really had some great items, including a monster basket of SPAM and other goodies donated by John and TC McNamara.  I never knew there were that many varieties of SPAM!!

  Our 2nd annual Pizza Night was again successful.  We consumed about 18 large pizzas!   We probably won’t have a pizza night on next year’s cruise, but, then again, who WANTS TO with all that great food aboard???

    The pre-reunion donations (a special thank you to the four crewmembers who sent in donations with their registrations and dues renewals), the registration fee and the donations during the reunion paid for pizza night and all the hospitality room refreshments and groceries and gratuity for our tour bus driver, Duncan. 

   Lastly, of our reunion wrap-up,  was our election of Brooke Association Officers, (or should I say “re-election” of officers?) Well, there were 27 voting members present at this year’s business meeting.  There were no new nom-inations, just a motion to re-tain the present officers for the next two years.  The vote was taken and we had 24 yeas and 3 nays.  The nays came from the 3 officers present: Adametz, Harris and, you guessed it, Hunt.  So, here we are for another two years.  At some point we’ll have to have others, probably YOUNGER others,  step up and take charge to continue the Brooke Association into the next decade.  We were the first crew of the ship, all 18 years old, so there must be  others who were 18-19 when the Brooke was decommissioned.  I think, as we gain more members in the next few years, our “reliefs” will rise to the surface.

   In closing, I would like to mention the reunion site for which we voted for 2009:  RENO.

   Reno was selected (mainly over Vegas) because of location and reasonable hotel rates.  In addition, we can schedule tours of Virginia City, the Ponderosa, ghost towns and probably a cruise on Lake Tahoe.  Other attractions include the terrific shows they offer and tons of great food.  Oh, yeah.  I think they have GAMBLING there too.  Anyway, they seem to be more military-reunion friendly for groups our size.

   That’s about it.  Don’t for-get to get your passport early.  Gotta have it for the cruise reunion.  And, don’t forget to send in the post card ASAP.




       A month has passed since the completion of another successful reunion. While it might sound repetitive I have to admit, with each successive gathering of the Brooke clan we seem to have more and more fun at these get-togethers.

       San Francisco was no exception. There was a constant choice of activities and events for our members to choose from. By the end of each day our troopers were pleasantly exhausted. I’m not sure if it was the pace of the events and tours or just the fact that we are getting older (hate to admit it but we just aren’t the “steamers” that we used to be) but the Hospitality Room was usually empty by 10 p.m. Of course we would have a couple of die-hards who wanted to “close the joint down” but for the most part, everyone needed their rest for the next day’s events.

       I would like to think that, while we enjoyed the sights, sounds, and let’s not forget the food, of San Francisco, the main focus of our gathering was seeing old friends and shipmates again. We had our normal cadre of “regulars” who came but we had many “first timers” at this year’s reunion. And from the comments I have received from the attendees, this was a fun event. One could walk into the Hospitality Room and hear the level of conversation and interaction between everyone. It simply was “alive!”

       As with every reunion we hold, a great deal of “behind the scenes” work goes on to ensure our members and their families and friends have a good time. San Francisco was no exception. And while I am very appreciative of the “kudos” I received this year I want to make sure everyone is aware that 99% of the front-end work, i.e. contracts, planning, scheduling was done by Steve Hunt, our Association Sec/Treas. I’ll take 1% credit because I did the site survey with him and lent him an ear to vent his frustration as the negotiations moved forward (or backwards at times). Nonetheless, Steve deserves the lion’s share of the credit for this and past reunions. Without his dedication and efforts to our organization we could never have pulled off the successful reunions we have experienced. Hats off to Steve!

      Already we have our 2008 reunion planning well underway and “underway” is the operative word here. We are looking at cruising the Caribbean in September and thanks to our Association Vice-President, Buddy Harris, we are moving well along with those plans. Buddy graciously volunteered (think he would have learned by now) to coordinate the cruise arrangements. From what I have heard so far it looks like he has a second career as a travel agent well in hand. Again, we are looking at a great time with a little different venue than we usually have. If you have ever cruised before you will know what I mean when I say you certainly get a great bang for your buck going the cruising route. For those of you who have never had the opportunity to cruise this would be a great time to take your first one. The price will be outstanding and the friends and shipmates will make it even better. Again, keep in mind that we are offering these great cruise prices to all our Brooke family and friends.

     In closing I want to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving and hope that you have the opportunity to share thanks for all we have with your loved ones. As always, please keep in mind those who have come after us to stand on the front lines and cannot be with their families during the holidays. May they be safe in our thoughts and prayers. 

Fair Winds and Following Seas,

 Tom Adametz


USS Brooke DEG/FFG-1 Association



 From Your Vice President

Buddy Harris


Well, by the time you receive this newsletter, it’ll have been a month and a half since our city by the bay reunion.  Time does go by fast.  It was really great to see so many familiar faces and some new ones as well.  If a few more of our crew members would try to make contact with us it would add to our annual festivities.

    We had a lot of fun and many great times and laughs!  The tours were informative, and the visit to Alcatraz was one of my personal favorites!  Although, with so much walking and climbing, those steep roads up to the cell blocks just about ended my walking days.

   At this years’ business meeting, we had a unanimous vote that 2008’s venue for our reunion would be a cruise. 

   At the meeting, Del Turner was gracious enough to provide me with other options for the cruise and a contact person.  After returning from ‘Friso, I contacted the Travel/Cruise  lady and received additional information.  After comparing this to the information/prices, we decided we had the best deal with our initial cruise company, Cruise Holidays.  Our prices are all inclusive of all port charges, taxes, government fees and, yes, most importantly, gratuities.

   This 7-day cruise will depart from Galveston, Tx on September 28, 2008.  The ports of call will be Montego Bay Jamaica, Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands and Cozumel, Yucatan, Mexico.  Brian Forrester, a cruise specialist with Cruise Holidays, will make this reunion a smooth, hassle-free great time for us.  He will be our contact person whom we can call to make our wishes and special needs known (handicapped, diet, etc). 

   We plank-owners can recall that we were the elite ship when it came to “Chow Time” !  We had the best of the best for the first few years in commission.  My first experience on a Cruise ship was what I called an “Adult Disneyland”.  Well, those of you who have not experienced a cruise before, are in for quite a treat!  Meals are served 24/7, so I recommend losing 5-7 pounds prior to the cruise or a wardrobe of elastic waist lines, as it is a non-stop eating frenzy.

   Those of you who are concerned about Hurricane season, rest assured that the ships are notified by NOAH long before us landlubbers are, and they circumvent any potential bad weather conditions and find other ports of call.  No need to worry about this.  That’s the Captain’s job.

   In closing,  I look forward to seeing you all at our next reunion, on board the Conquest.  Family and friends are invited and will enjoy the same great price!  Remember, folks, this cruise cost per person/per day starts at $86 ($605.00 per week).  Just where can you go and have a hotel room, 5 star dining, 24-hour room service, music, entertainment and so much more for this price?….Nowhere I know.

 See ya on the boat!



"Word to the Wives"

by Linda Hunt


Well, the San Francisco reunion is over.  It was a great success, thanks to all of Steve’s and Tom’s hard work.  Thanks are also due to our bus driver, Duncan, from Super Sightseeing Tours, He was so good the first day we called and requested him for the second day.  He even came, on his own time, to our Pizza night and Sat. banquet! He must have enjoyed our company, too.

   On a sad note, we heard from TC McNamara that John passed away early this month.  We’re all very sorry to hear that, and so VERY glad that he made it to the last two reunions.  Tom wrote about John in this newsletter.

   On to the future:  I’m REALLY looking forward to the cruise!  It’s been 15 years since my last (only) cruise, and they almost had to drag me off the ship!  If you’ve been on a cruise before, you know what I mean.  If not, I hope you plan on this one, so you can see for yourself.

   According to the literature I’ve seen so far, there are 2 formal occasions (Captain’s cocktail party and one formal dinner), so those of us who like to dress up occasionally will get to.

   There are usually MANY fun things to do, both on board and on shore excursions.  We’ll have more details on those later.  As usual, Steve has one or two (or more) surprises planned too.

   I sure hope you’re all planning to come on the Cruise.  I, for one, can’t wait!

   See y’all soon!




Application or renewal for membership in

U.S.S. Brooke Association


 If renewal, please fill out any up-to-date information





Phone:  Wk_________________Home_________________Cell__________________

 Type of Membership applying for:

[ ] Regular $25    [ ] Renewal $25    [ ] Dual $35      [ ] Associate or Honorary (no fee) 

Years stationed aboard:  From___________to____________.

Rate/Rank______________Highest aboard Brooke           Highest in USN______ 

Additional Comments:___________________________________________________


Note: For an Associate or Honorary membership, please fill in the above information for the crewmember.

Please submit application for regular or renewal membership with check for $25/$35 (dual) to

USS BROOKE Association c/o Steve Hunt  P.O. Box 1692 Tacoma, Wa.  98401



Ship’s Store Order Form

                                    Items available                                                                                    Number                 Total

USS Brooke Ball Caps     [ ] DEG/FFG-1    [ ] FFG-1                 $12.95 ea.                         ______             _________

USS Brooke Polo Shirts (some DEG-1, some DEG/FFG-1)

     [ ] Med.   [ ] Large  [ ] X-Lg.  [ ] 2X   [ ] White [ ] Blue           $25.00 ea.                         ______            _________

USS Brooke Pens (with active service years)                                   $3.00 ea.                        ______             __________

USS Brooke Ceramic Mugs                                                            $7.50 ea.                        ______             __________


USS Brooke Videos:                DVD’s only

                                    [ ] #1   [ ] #2   [ ] #3  [ ] #4                        $15.00 ea.                       _______           __________

   #1  First produced in 1988, video includes the actual commissioning

Day, the 20th Anniversary (Plankowners get the ship underway), and

The Decommissioning Ceremony in 1988. 57 thrilling minutes!

  #2   Home video of the Brooke underway.  Includes Missile Shoots,

Gun & ASROC firings and more.  From 1977 Westpac. 43 minutes.                              Shipping &

   #3   First Westpac for Brooke in 1968.  Includes Unreps, Crossing the                          Handling                ___$4.95____

Equator, firing exercises and more.  38 Minutes.

  #4    NEW!  2005 Charleston Reunion. Provided by Scott Youngren.           TOTAL ENCLOSED             ____________



Don't Miss The Boat

2008 Cruise Reunion

Prices and availability are on a first come first serve basis and are subject to change.

Call Brian today and secure your cabin now with your fully refundable deposit.



 It is an inevitable journey that we take through this life in that at some point, for all of us, the journey comes to an end. If we are lucky, we live a long and productive life and leave when we reach a ripe old age. If we are lucky, we live to see our children and grandchildren achieve success and happiness in their own lives based on the advice and guidance we gave them. If we are lucky, we make many lifelong friends who enrich our lives just by knowing them. Again, it takes considerable luck to reach these goals.

Within the past week we lost one of our shipmates. John McNamara left us much too soon. Most of us knew that John had an incurable cancer but each time we saw him we marveled at how he dealt with the “unlucky” hand that life had dealt him. He never wavered in his love of his family and friends and up until the end he was a pillar of strength to all.   

It had been forty years since I had seen John when he showed up at our reunion in Charleston, SC in 2006. Along with “TC”, his lovely and courageous wife who was a mountain of strength herself, they made the gathering of the Brooke clan all that much better. It was at that time that I learned of John’s illness and I was filled with both a deep sadness and a sense of deep admiration for how both John and TC were handling the situation. On top of that I saw first hand how John was determined to beat the monster inside him. Alas, it was a terrible monster that would not be defeated.

I had the opportunity to spend a weekend with John, TC, and their two youngest daughters (they have five!) just after the San Francisco reunion. It was during that brief stay that my observations of John’s love for his family were reinforced. A bear of a man, John was pussycat with his daughters. And while TC was the stoic “enforcer”, making sure John adhered to his medication schedule and diet, her tender, supportive side, was never far away. There was never an opportunity missed to tell, or show, their daughters how much they loved them. It was as thought John knew inside that his journey was coming to an end.

John will be deeply missed by all who knew him. I, for one, wish there were more time to tell John what a great husband, father, and friend he was. I believe I can speak for all those from the Brooke when I say we were lucky to have known John. And while we knew him so briefly it can be said that once you met John it was like you had known him for a lifetime. May his soul rest in peace and may his family find the strength to carry on after the loss of such a fine man. They will be in our thoughts and prayers forever. Farewell my friend, I know St. Peter is enjoying a slice of Spam with you right now.


“Eternal Father strong to save…….”


Tom Adametz


USS Brooke DEG-1/FFG-1 Association


What Happened to

The Brooke Class?

Reprinted from DESANEWS Nov. 2001

The USS BROOKE DEG/FFG-1 was leased to Pakistan on February 1, 1989 and renamed KHAIBAR. The ship was returned on November 14, 1993 and  scrapped.

The USS RAMSEY DEG/FFG-2 was sunk as a target on June 15, 2000.

The USS SCHOFIELD DEG/FFG-3 was sunk as a target on November 2, 1999. 

The USS TALBOT DEG/FFG-4 was leased to Pakistan on April 30, 1989 and renamed HUNIAN. The ship was returned on November 29, 1992 and scrapped.   

The  USS RICHARD L . PAGE DEG/FFG-5 was  leased to Pakistan and renamed TABUK.  The ship was returned on January 15, 1994 and scrapped.

The USS JULIUS A. PAGE DEG/FFG-6 was leased to Pakistan on March 31, 1989 and renamed BADR. The ship was returned on December 11, 1993 and scrapped.





Regular Membership dues to the Association are $25 per year. Associate membership (no fee) is available for all surviving spouses of Brooke Crewmembers.

Your current membership expiration date is to the right of your name on the address label on the newsletter. To continue "Port & Starboard" please remit your dues payment in accordance with published dues schedule, payable to the USS Brooke Association and mail to our Treasurer at the address below:

Steve Hunt

USS Brooke DEG/FFG-1

P.O. Box 1692

Tacoma, WA 98401


For more information please visit our website @