|Fifties Frogs Magazine||
Two Vessels Toured By Thousands Fitting Tribute to Adm. King
Uncle Sam’s Navy today gave a tremendous kick-off to the city’s 125th anniversary celebration.
Significantly enough, thousands of persons were making tours of two warships tied along the Black River. North of E. Erie bridge, on Admiral King Day in honor of the late Adm Ernest J. King a native of Lorain. The ships are the USS Donner and the USS Kleinsmith a fast transport.
A large crowd was expected at the Admiral King Day banquet today at 7 p.m. at the Sheffield Restaurant. The main speaker will be Rear Adm. Harold M. Briggs, USN, Pan-American Affairs director in the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations.
Meanwhile, considerable enthusiasm was being generated over the mammoth parade and the opening of the historic pageant, "This is Lorain," both events scheduled for Saturday.
The parade, which will be highlighted by more than 50 colorful floats, about thirteen bands, a drum and bugle corps, and about 200 marching units in five divisions under the direction of Michial Repas, parade marshal, will get under way Saturday at 10 a.m. at 11th and Broadway.
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Navy and Lorain Exchange Greetings Aboard Vessels (by Edward brown)
"Nothing like it before"
The city of Lorain and the U.S. Navy exchanged greetings this morning and it was highly unlikely that neither sailors nor citizens had quite seen anything like it before.
As a foursome of anniversary celebrants marched proudly up the USS Kleinsmith gangway, the women in long dresses and bonnets, the men in bowler hats, the Petty Officer of the Deck, First Class Robert E. Bock, the official greeter, stared in wonder but kept his dignity.
Aboard the USS Donner it was apparently a different story. "They told us they wanted us to help in the galley," reported Mrs. Mary Mendoza. "One of them [the crew} asked me for a date on the spot. It was a barrel of fun."
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Mrs. Dorothy Rodriguez, said her party had gotten mixed up as to the date of the parade. "We thought it was today," she said, "but we’re going aboard anyway."
While the Kleinsmith sparkled in her new coat of paint and was spotted with white bell bottom trousers, it took her a lot longer to dress up.
Before the first passenger was aboard, bleary eyed "swabbies" were busy sewing tarps and giving finishing touches to the lockers. "We’ve had to paint this deck four times since we came to the lakes," said Seaman Frank Conti, 19, as he gave another tug to the long needle. Conti has been patching canvas since shortly after reveille at 6 a.m.
"They must have a good crew. Boy, everything is spic and span." Remarked Mrs. Betty Kowalski.
Lt. Commander P. A Schwemley, Captain of the Kleinsmith, gave a hint of the preparations that go into welcoming civilians aboard, "We don’t usually wear whites when we are out to sea," he said., "yes our laundry is doing a pretty good business these days.
Petty Officer Bock observed that the tour was pretty informal. "There are men stationed around at strategic spots," he said. "If there doesn’t happen be one there, just grab a sailor and ask him to explain things."
There was nothing strange about the Kleinsmith for Tim O’Saughnessy, "I was on one exactly like her in World War II," he said above the roar of the engine room ventilators. "I just had to get down here." With special permission from the "old Man" O’Shaughnessy and his son Tim Jr., we were allowed to climb through the hatch and descend the ladder to the engine room.
The Kleinsmith had the honor of being the first naval warship to sail the Great Lakes in a good many years. Her mission was to make an advance reconnaissance of the beaches where the demonstration landing operations were to be held.
Before 7 a.m. Saturday she will steam out for Cleveland where a small but well trained team of frogman will clear the beach at Edgewater Park for the landings.
Editors Note: This was an interesting news clip submitted by Pete DiCroce. Usually in these kinds of celebrations, the frogs’ demonstration is the main focus and what the crowds come to see. Evidently, the paper didn’t even cover the frog demonstration at all. Odd!
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