2008 Cruise/Feast was Fun! (Burp!)


By Steve Hunt

Secretary Treasurer



What a great reunion!

 We overcame and worked around “Hurricane Ike” to bring about another successful reunion. We again, got lucky with the opening of a new cruise terminal in Houston. And, when Galveston closed, the ship just moved closer to Houston and the airports.  Our only major problem was the hotel, before and after the cruise. Fortunately, the CVB from Galveston followed through and contacted me to see if they could help with anything. (They were closed due to flooding but called from Austin). So, with their help, we were able to secure rooms, all in the same hotel.  (No mean feat with all the FEMA and construction workers pouring into the area).  So…CHEERS to Sherry and Dorothy of the Galveston CVB for making our reunion a success.  Y’All went above and beyond for us, especially when it was YOU who had more problems than us. We’ll be back!!

And now,  Reno.

   I’ve sent out RFP’s (thru the local CVB) to many of the area hotels and so far have had a great response.  Circus Circus, Silver Legacy, Atlantis, Peppermill, Harrah’s and one Lake Tahoe property have sent proposals to us.  Circus Circus  has the best offer of all of them, and ya gotta admit, location is important. In February, Tom and I will meet in Reno and do several site inspection/tours of the hotels.  We’ll select our reunion site then and have all the details in the next newsletter, out in April or May.  At present, it appears that the end of August will be our best time for availability and great rates.  September is a busy month in Reno with the Balloon Festival and Air Races.  They pretty much fill up and are not as flexible with their rates and amenities.  Details to follow in April or May.

   Now,  about the passing of another shipmate, Dave Kalaf.  Tom kinda summed it up for all of us in his tribute to Dave on Page 3.  I’m with Tom, as I was also one of the “11” Sonar Techs with Dave in 1965 and was with him in SERS school.  Dave attended the reunions in Seattle, San Diego, New Orleans and San Francisco, and would’ve made ALL of them, if not for his health problems. I still enjoy spam and I’ll think of Dave every time I open a can.  So long, Dave.

   Before I close I would like to say welcome aboard to a new member, who joined during the cruise, Dan Carroll. In addition, we’ve had many renewals in the past few months (including Dave Kalaf) so thank you all for your continued support of our Association.

   I intended to include a new questionnaire in this issue of P&S but just ran out of time. So, hopefully, it’ll be in the next issue and  will include future site reunions and dates and  have a “return post card”  for your convenience. It’s worth the time and expense as it was a great tool for our cruise reunion and provided the numbers we needed to schedule it.

Now, three more items to go.

   First, my apologies to Kaye Desch for not completing our ’68 WestPac films in a timely manner.  I WILL have it in the can by next newsletter. Secondly, the 2008 minutes and our annual financial report are inserted in ALL members newsletters, but not non-members. And, last item is about our Ship’s Store:  We sold 31 “Cruise Shirts” and about a dozen ball caps.  I’ll be replacing our shirt inventory in the next few months so if you need one right now, we may not have your size/color in stock, but will soon.

   Hope to see you all in Reno!




       Greetings to all and I hope this finds everyone in good health and spirits and getting ready for the Holiday Season.

This is my first column since our “Roadrunner” Cruise reunion in September and I would like to take a moment to reminisce about that wonderful week spent with shipmates, families and friends.

In spite of Mother Nature making every attempt to change our plans with a hurricane hitting Galveston, the “Brooke Gang” persevered thanks to the outstanding work of Buddy and Julie Harris and Mr. Brian Forrester in making alternative arrangements to get us underway. Over fifty Association members and their guests spent seven great days on the Carnival ship “Conquest” and visited some wonderful ports. Great food, great camaraderie, and great weather made for a memorable voyage. Many a “sea story” was created by the adventures of our members as they cruised the Caribbean. I won’t go into the details as this is a “family column” but let it suffice to say, “What happens on a cruise, stays on a cruise!” In fact, such a good time was had that I believe Steve Hunt will be sending out a survey to see if our membership wishes to do another cruise in the near future.

Even as we unwind from the cruise, Steve Hunt and I will be heading to Reno, NV in February to do a site survey for our 2009 reunion. I know, it’s a nasty job, but someone has to do it. Steve and I will be looking at hotels to host our crew, check out local attractions that will interest our group, make the transportation arrangements, etc. With good fortune we should be able to set up another memorable reunion for the Association next year. I hope that many of you will be able to attend. As soon as we have some firm dates we will put them out to the group.

As the year winds down we find ourselves in truly unique times in the history of our country. From really difficult economic times to the election of a new president, the United States is going through a period of change that will have lasting impact on every citizen. I, for one, have the utmost faith in our ability to weather this storm and come out stronger after it passes. I have faith in my family and friends to be there for one another and pull together to get through the tough times. I am grateful for our having the Brooke Association and being able to bring together many folks who shared a common bond so many years ago. I call upon every member to make a renewed effort to stay in contact with your shipmates and remember the strength that got us through the tough times in the past. That strength will carry us through today.

I wish you all a Merry Christmas and the best in the New Year. May we all meet again in Reno.

Fair Winds And Following Seas,

Tom Adametz

President, USS Brooke DEG-1/FFG-1 Association



The Passing of

Dave Kalaf

   As time goes by we accept the inevitability that we will all be called to that “final muster”.  And, while we don’t dwell on it, we know that at some point in time it becomes “our time”.  Maybe it is because I am in that category of “senior citizen” I have found myself scanning the obit pages on occasion out of idle curiosity.  Not necessarily looking to see if someone I know is there but, more so the ages of those who passed on.  If I see an octogenarian has passed on, then I think “a long life”.  When I see someone younger than me I think “Oh-Oh!”.

   When Dave Kalaf’s sister informed me that Dave had lost his battle with cancer I thought a simple “Damn, Dave was too young”.   And, while 62 isn’t a kid, it is not at the far side of the actuarial table either.  Dave left too early.

   You see, I knew Dave for over forty-three years.  We met in Key West, Fla. in 1965, when we were both in the same “A” school class.  In turn, we were both assigned (along with 11 other “boot” sonar techs) to the Brooke pre-com detail.  And that was the period that cemented a more than four decade friendship.

    If you knew Dave you knew he was a good man.  A man who was thoughtful, kind and considerate.  He had a quirky sense of humor and had the ability to make you smile in the direst of situations.  Typical of Dave was how he handled SERE school.  As hard as that experience was, he found humor through his introduction to Spam.  That is how he became the first “Spambo” for the Association.

   Dave was not a complainer and was eternally optimistic.  He was just about ready to retire from the Navy when a shipboard accident caused him to suffer a debilitating injury that left him disabled and in constant pain.  Rather than complain, Dave dedicated his life to helping others through the VA.  When I talked with him a couple of months ago and he informed me that the “beast” had entered his body, he said he was on the mend and his doctors had an optimistic prognosis.  Dave had bone cancer and it had invaded his liver.  And while he gave it his all to beat it, the “beast” won.

   Dave was a lifelong bachelor.  He always said he never met the “right person”.  But he had a lifetime of friends and shipmates with whom he always stayed in contact.  I know that everyone who knew Dave will miss him tremendously.  I sure as hell will.  He was a one-of-a-kind man and I know he is already asking St. Peter if there is Spam on the menu in heaven.  Rest in peace, my friend! 

Tom Adametz


Word to the Wives

By Linda Hunt  

 Well, the long-awaited cruise is now just a memory!  I hope it’s a good memory for you, as it is for us!

   Now it’s time to look forward again, this time to Reno.  Steve is trying to round up some good trips and meals for us again.  One of the dinners, hopefully, will be at either Louis’ Basque Corner Restaurant or the Santa Fee, also a Basque restaurant, and they’re both good! Steve and I go to Louis’ every time we’re in Reno.  Last time I was there (in September)  I finally got to try the Santa Fe and it was as good as Louis’. If you’ve never been to a Basque restaurant you’re in for a treat!  Everything is served family style (usually 2 entrees) so,  if you don’t get enough to eat,  then you weren’t really trying.

   Another really good meal which we hope to arrange for the group, is the Sunday Champagne Brunch at the Silver Legacy.  They set out a great  feast and the champagne is never-ending.  Once again, if you don’t get enough to eat (or drink) you’re not trying hard enough! You’d think I was hungry right now…but we just finished having lunch (Christmas dinner left-overs)

   Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and have a fantastic New Year!

Until next time,

Linda Hunt


Entertainment and Attractions

Other Venues and Sights of Interest


Walking Tour


Casino Guide


Want to See a Show?


How About Seeing Virginia City?



What's The Weather Like?



OK, How Do I Get There?








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             ____________





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 @