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Progress Report Archives - July, 2008 - December, 2008

Progress Report Update
Posted December 14, 2008
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Once again on a cold winters day Bill shows up with the makings. It's hot veggie soup and grilled cheese sandwiches for the crew. We never tire of having Bill in the galley. The Marines that have been working on the stern 40mm mount decided it was too miserable to work outside so they lent a hand chipping one of the passageways. Jim has been fabricating bracing for the new nut and bolt bins.

Naturally the bracing fits like a glove. These braces will keep the nut and bolt bins locked down solid in case there is movement on the ship. Ray and Ron position the stanchions that will hold the chains to keep visitors from walking on the sheet of lexan that is being placed on the tank deck. This will allow visitors to look directly into the engine room. Ron and Ray drill a vent hole so water can drain out of a space next to the old boiler room.

Harry and Ray check dimensions on one of the access doors on the generator. As a rule we eat pretty well on LST 325. Ken brought in a ham after Thanksgiving. Betty made augraten potatoes and baked beans. Larry has that blind dog in the smokehouse look on his face. What do I get first? Ray has tracked down another leak around the elevator and is preping the surface for a welded patch.

Harry is tracking an electric circuit and that is not always an easy task on this ship. With Harry on one end and Dave on the other there is no circuit that can remain a secret. They are like Sherlock and Dr. Watson. You decide which is which. This is how the supplies in the officers country head looked before and after. Ron's words were "it's funny what you can do with $10 worth of sheet metal and a friend with a metal break".

Sam explains the finer points of a high line chair to one of the many groups going through the ship. After Jim got the bins braced up Fred is stocking them. Thanks to Ron the bins came to the ship at no cost. Another one of the vast aray of tools that Ron has is this electro magnetic drill. It made short work of these stanchions that Ray is drilling.

After a short vacation in Florida, Pete is back in warm clothes working on securing new electric circuits in the port officers country passageway. Sure beats Florida doesn't it Pete... Once again this is a "Before" picture. The green generator stuck out on the ship like a sore thumb. In the "After" generator picture you'll notice that the generator blends right in with the rest of the ship. In fact from the office it's hard to pick out.

Now that looks more like a real piece of Navy equiptment. You saw the lettering on a previous progress report. This is the "After" picture.

Progress Report Update
Posted December 1, 2008
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This photo was somehow lost enroute to the November 17, 2008 Progress Report. It shows the finished starboard deck vent that Walley and Nick were working on. Good job guys.

Joshua unloads supplies from the golf cart. They will be used for the Veterans Day breakfast. Joshua is one of our newest volunteers and is doing a great job. Good to have you around Josh. More supplies coming aboard. Walley has a strong back so I let him carry my part. Someone has to make him famous.... Pete has a very personal relationship with the needle gun. I believe our needle guns are the most photographed items on the ship. But they are always in a different location......

Woody is another new volunteer on the ship. He's working on the area at the bottom of the ladder leading down from the galley on the port side. Another big welcome aboard.... Walley has located another area that has been leaking and prepares the surface for a patch to be welded on. This one is just outside the radio shack door..... Roy is preparing to clean and paint the air compressor building on the barge

This is the finished compressor building after Roy has done his magic. By the way, this building was made possible by Ron (our new Executive Director) at no cost to the ship.... Another finished area is the Captain's Sea Cabin. It really looks nice with the new coat of paint. One of our Marines is putting the finishing touches on the aft twin 40. These guys have really done a good job. We tease them a lot but they have really been an asset to the ship.....

Ray welds up another area that has been leaking. Every time a welding rod is burnt the ship becomes more secure. Jim guides a group of Cub Scouts through the ship. Our tour guides do a bang up job and this one cooks pretty good too..... Our portable lights get a lot of wear and tear and occasionally have to be repaired. Dave does a good job of keeping up with them.

It doesn't seem to matter what Harry is working on it always means some time spent in the shaft alley. I think he really likes it down there. After Dave repaired the portable flood he went about installing permanent light fixtures. This is the last time you will see the Grove painted yellow. This could be called the "Before" picture.

This photo was taken at approx 0500 on Veterans Day. The galley crew is just getting cranked up for a record setting event. This is but a small portion of the folks that were fed on Veterans Day. George Fiscus came to breakfast in his WW II dress blues. He was a helmsman on LST 341 during the war. I think you can tell by the expression on his face that he was enjoying the morning. This was his first time behind the helm since the war.

Another photo showing some of the crowd. It went on like this for four hours. A job well done by the crew of LST 325. And last but not least on this report even Gene, our ships plumber got his sleeves wet in the scullery. Not bad for an ole Army guy.

Progress Report Update
Posted November 22, 2008

CAPTAIN'S UPDATE continued...

In Moline we docked with the bow straight in to the shore, (the ship was perpendicular to the shore.)

We had a big crowd watching as we opened the bow doors and the ramp and moved in against the shore. Moline Park Dist. had removed the big rocks and put sand down exactly where we came in. We like to do this wherever we can, as coming into the ship through the bow doors and into the tank deck is awesome! This also works good for our gift shop as everyone leaves by the bow doors. Our gift shop is on the Port side in front of the ladder coming out of the troop compartments into the tank deck. We had a line for a block up along the river all the time. We were always worried we would have to shut people off as 1700 hr approaches, our quitting time. Moline proved to be the busiest, with almost 15,000 fans coming aboard in five days. This could have been 2000 more had we not been delayed in arriving. Lori Wilson with Moline Parks did a great job for us. I also must tell you that a Mr. George White of the Quad Cities did an outstanding job, going to 190 newspapers in Illinois, Iowa, and Missouri with news of our itinerary.

Clinton, IA also put out the red carpet – a big first day reception with the mayor and state and local politicians present. Here Heather of the Clinton CVB did an outstanding job and applied for a grant which helped us pay some of our expenses. We thank everyone at Clinton who helped with this and our visit. At Clinton we came in with my dual ship’s whistles blasting, our stern twin 40mm firing, and the Navy song, “Anchors Away” blaring out of the 325’s speakers! We launched a DUKW off at all ports and loaded it back on before leaving. - A big hit for all to see. We called this “The LST goes Duck hunting!”

Ft. Madison proved to be a great stop for us once the sun managed to come out again. Mr. Tracy Vance of the Chamber did a great job for us an especially Denise of Hall's Towing, who worked with the CG on our mooring arrangement and supplied two spud barges and assisted us in our departure. The big thing here was the high water caused by hurricane "Ike". Instead of leaving Monday, we stayed 5 days and left on Saturday at noon in order to arrive in St. Louis on Monday morning at 0600, when it was predicted that the water would be down enough for us to go under the bridges. We stopped for a few hours in Hannibal for some rest, and everyone got to see the town. on Sunday.

At 1600, we started for St. Louis arriving at 0700, made it under the bridges, and then down a flooded high water roaring Mississippi River. We needed to get home for LST week. LST 325 was averaging 15mph just like a horse headed for the barn! Then at dusk we learned that the CG had stopped all south bound traffic at Mile Marker one at the Cairo bridge to MO. The LST was so close to making a turn on the Ohio and normal water level. A call to the CG asking permission to go through the bridge – again an exception for the LST – was made and permission granted. Twenty four hours and 200 miles later, we were home just 12 hours before LST week started.

Three rides on Thursday of LST week for nearly 450 vets and guests closed out this chapter.. It’s been quite a ride topped off by a great LST week!! The best illustration of why we do this is the veteran who came up to me at the Executive Inn with tears in his eyes thanking us for what we do after his ride on the LST, then his wife and daughter echoed his sentiments also with tears in their eyes. They said he never talked about his war experiences until we brought the LST back. It’s a sobering experience. That’s why we brought her back!

As I've said many times, you can't buy it with a MasterCard. I've gotten my entire volunteer pay for the next year!

May the wind be always at your back……….

Bob Jornlin , Capt. LST 325

Progress Report Update
Posted November 17, 2008
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Meet Elseah Marie C. age 2 1/2 from Chester, IL. One of our great younger fans. Her parents kept her up late when the ship went up the Missippi River on our voyage this year. She blew the horn on her fathers deuce and a half and the captain answered with his whistles. She kept asking her parents when we were coming back so she could hear us blow the whistles at her, which we did to her delight.(photo by: Her Mom)

Pete keeps chasing rusty spots. (photo by: Don Hardesty) Walley works on rebuilding one of the starboard deck vents.(photo by: Don Hardesty) While Walley is working on the vent below, Nick prepares the base.(photo by: Don Hardesty)

Winterizing of the ship is going on. Ray and Fred are covering the horns and spotlight. This is working from the top down. (photo by: Don Hardesty) Ray and Ron are cutting blocks of insulation to be placed into the various orifices on the ship. This is part of the continuing winterazation of the ship.(photo by: Don Hardesty) Pete, Fred and Ed remove one of the damaged life rafts.(photo by: Don Hardesty)

The damage is very evident in this photo. Fred guides the raft down as others look on.(photo by: Don Hardesty) Bill cooks up a pot of his famous "Old George" soup. I think the first thing that is said to Bill when he comes aboard is; "Are you making soup?"(photo by: Don Hardesty) Fred examines both damaged rarfts and prepares to move them aside.(photo by: Don Hardesty)

The port LCVP is being lowered to it's cradle to be winterized.(photo by: Don Hardesty) The elevator is covered and sealed for coming bad weather.(photo by: Don Hardesty) Pete continues with his painting. If you stand still too long you may become haze grey.(photo by: Don Hardesty)

Harry and Ron go over improvements to the barge air compressor. (photo by: Don Hardesty) Pete and Dave work on improvements. Pete prepares to winterize a vent while Dave is working on replacing faulty wiring. (photo by: Don Hardesty) Harry, an electrician, and Gene, a plumber go over what will be needed to get the steam table in the galley up and running.(photo by: Don Hardesty)

Our new Grove has been painted and receives proper markings. Now it really looks Navy. (photo by: Don Hardesty) Another view of the Grove. A full view is coming. (photo by: Don Hardesty)

The green monster is dead. Now this is how Navy equiptment should look.(photo by: Don Hardesty) Ray fits a vent screen into place after winterization.(photo by: Don Hardesty) Sam works on winterizing the port LCVP. You can tell he loves his work by the smile on his face.(photo by: Don Hardesty)

Progress Report Update
Posted November 11, 2008


Hi LST Fans:

I wish I had the flow of words of Susie Bloom! I give a Captain's update in our Newsletter, but I know not all of you are members. So I will try to give you a progress report that gives you news of the ship and all of the things that go on around the ship, and try not to bore the ones who do read my update in the Phoenix.

The LST 325 came through the summer in great shape with a lot of people coming aboard, reunion groups, conventions, people from other countries and from all over the Good Old USA. I like to call all of them as I do you, "LST FANS". We especially like veterans, who come aboard and reminisce about their time in the service, no matter what service or time. It's been said that if you are a friend or family member of a veteran who served or rode on an LST, that once he sees the LST, you can forget talking to him because his mind is back at the time he was on the LST. He is not in Evansville, IN. His mind is back when he served his country in some far off "God forsaken" place. He is thinking about his shipmates and his friends while on the "T". Maybe a battle or a landing or just a storm out to sea. You can talk to him, but he would just as soon that you didn't, because he is home again -- on his LST!

We started working on this year's "Historic" Mississippi River trip over one year ago. Garry Hisel wrote letters and contacted some 7 or 8 cities on the Miss. River all the way from above Alton, Illinois to one hundred miles north of the Illinois line into Wisconsin. He sent letters and talked to these cities by phone; some were not interested for different reasons, low water at their river front, too much money or expense, or no pier or space for the LST to tie up. Our President, Terry Tull, and I took a two day tour up the river in early February. We stopped in Hannibal, MO. since Quincy, IL. said the water was too low there. Hannibal was excited about us coming in. We had to work around the American Queen, which makes regular stops there. They have a very good dock. Next was Ft Madison, which was also excited and showed us where the closed gambling boat was docked, and said that boat would be gone before August. We passed Burlington, IA. as their Convention and Visiting Bureau had said they were not interested. We went on to the Quad cities and, with the encouragement of Gold Crew member Don Chapman, picked a place in Moline. Terry and I went on to Clinton, IA. They were really excited, but we thought Clinton was too close to Moline. So we headed farther up the river to Savanna, IL. They would love to have us, but no dock, and they were just a few miles north of Clinton. Clinton also had a gambling boat with a good dock for the ship, and they also said it would be gone by the time,we would arrive. Dubuque and East Dubuque said no; Prairie du Chen, WI said please come. On looking on the charts, that was a long way from Clinton, IA.; not to mention from Evansville.

Terry worked with these cities, wrote them letters, and Lois and I --- well we went to Florida! In March we came back and things were falling into place as to our stops on the "Mighty Mississippi" We had the American Queen schedule for Hannibal, so picked our dates for the first stop. Don Chapman and Moline wanted us over Labor Day, which was Sept. 1, 2008. To do that we had to by-pass Ft. Madison and catch them on the way back. Clinton was happy with the week-end after Moline and Ft Madison was happy with the second week-end in Sept. I can tell you that Terry and I both made several more trips to each of these cities. I made four to Moline and a rescue trip to Ft. Madison just before Lois and I headed for Evansville to help get the ship ready to go and get the last Coast guard inspection with our permit to sail.

Kenny Adams had worked hard with the Coast Guard to try and make a one time inspection early. Last year we got permission to sail at 1700 hr on the night before we were to go. This is not easy on the old Captain's nerves. Then we were inspected again at each stop. I missed out on an inspection from the Chicago CG sector, as we did not get to Henry, IL. This year our inspection came at our LST work week, April 5th. As is pretty common we got a two page list of things that needed to be done. The LST maintenance crew and others, plus the sailing crew got them done, and we had our cruise papers in the first part of August. The Coast Guard and the Corps of Engineers were a big help in getting us through low water between Hannibal and Moline. Mile marker 420 will be on my mind for some time. I received a call about 1600 hr on Tuesday. I was around the 360 mile marker when the CG called, Lt. Martin in Rock Island, IL.. He said the Miss. was closed only 7 ft. deep at mile marker 420 and I had to find a place to tie up the "Grey Lady". Easy for him to say -- just pull it into any marina! I called the City Manager in Burlington, IA. and asked for permission to tie up at their dock and thank you -- he said yes. From the different conversations, it looked like we would be delayed several days. On arriving in Burlington my pilots said goodbye as they had to be back to work, and had only planned to be with me until Moline arriving Thursday at 1000 hr. OK, I had several days right?

We reached Burlington, IA. about 2200 hr., found the pier and enough cleats to tie the ship up. I had called several in Moline to inform all that we were delayed probably for several days. Morning on Wednesday was a beautiful day, and shortly after sunrise "LST FANS" began to gather, more and more of them. If you can imagine driving to work across the US Rt. 34 bridge, maybe half asleep as you have done every morning, then looking to the left and then to the right. You may expect to see a barge or tug boat, a fisherman or two, and maybe a sea gull flying along. Then as you turn your head back to the road, just what did you see along the river? What was that big gray thing with guns? Cell phones were busy and some conversations were put off at the site of seeing an LST up close. Many detours were made, friends and family called along with e-mails and calls to the newspaper and radio station. We opened at noon because that is what we do, and the Fans poured on the ship.

At 1600 I received a call from the Corp of Engineers telling me that the Corp's dredge "America" would be calling to inform me that the LST 325 would be escorted through the now blocked river at 0600 tomorrow morning! The call came just a few minutes later; they were going to let the LST and that other boat, the "American Queen" go through a narrow dredged channel at sunrise. Could I be there? Looking at the charts, we needed to get underway before 0300 to go through the bridge, one lock and be at mile marker 420 at sunrise. One problem, where do I find a pilot? Fortunately the pilot Capt. Gary Neff, that helped bring us from Evansville to Hannibal, lived in Burlington, IA. He had to call his boss, his wife, change his plans, and just flinched a little when I said I needed him at 0200 in the morning! We have had such great pilots that love this LST. So with the Bos'n mate sounding reveille, underway we were and exactly at 0600 I reported in to the dredge. We needed to wait a few minutes for the sun to come up. The "American Queen" was given first pass as she was coming down river. We treaded water and watched her pass within 100 ft all lit up in the dim morning light.. The corp had asked if she was capable of staying right behind the tug boat that was to lead us through the blockage. She answered "I have port and starboard bow thrusters, two screws, and a paddle. I can do everything but disappear!" The "America" answered "Lets hope then the fog doesn't set in!". We were next and through the dredged area LST 325 went. A big "Thank You" was given and off to Moline, expecting a 1700 arrival.

To be continued...

Progress Report Update
Posted November 09, 2008
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0800-0900 Coffee Hour
0900 Call meeting to order
Pledge of Allegiance
Welcome everyone and review minutes of 2007 Annual Meeting
Treasurers Report
Election of Directors
Introduce Candidates
Nominations from floor
Vote; By Ballot for those not voting by mail or proxies
Tabulation of votes & proxies will be given before close of this meeting
Old Business
New Business
Introduction of New Directors

LUNCH - Place to be determined
The Board of Directors meeting will follow after adjournment of the annual meeting & Lunch

Call Meeting to order
Attendance taken for quorum
Review minutes of previous board meeting
Treasurers Report
Election of Officers
Ship Maint Committee report
Tour Guide Comments
General Report- Membership, Gift Shop,Etc.- Ron Crane/Sandy Whicker
Oil/ Water Separator project
Heat for Gift Shop
Historic Designation & Grant for Ship
2009 River/Cruise Plan
Winter Maint Plans
Review Gift Shop Committee
Work Week 2009
Golf Tournament ?
LST Week
D Day Re-enactment
MVPA/ Europeans Water Week 09

Executive Session
Close Executive Session
Set Date and location for next meeting

Progress Report Update
Posted November 04, 2008
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62 years ago in Yokosuka naval base / Tokyo bay (Yokohama Harbor, Japan); Gunner’s Mate Grant Lee and Radioman Marion Adams both Plank Owners of LST 491 along with other crew members were given the task of decommissioning the 491 (their home for almost 3 years).

These young Navy sailors met with the Japanese to work out the details of turning the ship over to Japan. The Japanese were going to use it to bring their by-passed troops back to their homeland, Japan. Most of these troops numbering in the millions were out of food and facing certain starvation.

On the deck of the LST 325 in a meeting with representatives from a Japanese TV station, Grant and Marion reminisced over the emotional days that occurred 62 years ago. An old time arm wrestle (elbows on the table) decided who will tell who what to do. Grant beat the strongest of the Japanese 2 out of 3 and became the new ships boss.

Grant's authority from that day forward was not questioned and training the Japanese to look after and care for his beloved ship went smoothly.

Ms. Yanagihara (M. Midori Yanahihara is a Legislative Historical Researcher) said the 49 minute film segment will air in Japan on public TV, January 2009. The humanitarian efforts carried out under American supervision using the legendary LST’s is a story (as she describes it) that should not be forgotten.

The 491 was of one of very few LST’s that served in both the Atlantic and the Pacific theaters. The 491 was the Flotilla Command ship at Wars End.

Grant and Marion have remained friends for all these years. They meet annually at LST Week on the 325. They are the last remaining crew of LST 491. The LST 491 was known as Ol’ Double Trouble. They are both members of the 325 Memorial Organization.

Ref: Book published by James W Knox (491 Skipper)


Meet D. Churchwell and Jack Stephenson, they are two of the more then 50 people to sign on as new 325 volunteers this summer during the Mississippi River Trip.

D. and Jack both live in Moline and chose to work on the ship Oct. 13th to the 18th in trade for there annual fall fishing trip. They just could not wait for work week next spring.

They took on several welding jobs as well as helped remove all the decals on the ships crane to prepare it for painting.

Welcome aboard fellows – see you next spring.


Captain Jornlin presents Vernon P. Barnett his E Award on a recent sunny day on the ship.

Progress Report Update
Posted October 22, 2008
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by: Susie Bloom

   When families have reunions, there is a strong sense of anticipation… a longing to see the faces of loved ones, to hear their voices, catch up on news. Planning and preparations are begun far in advance. Family members who live great distances away save money to be sure they can attend… often traveling great distances.

   Early fall in Indiana, along the Ohio River, trees are just beginning to show the fall colors that will soon blossom into beautiful hues of yellow, red and orange. The colors of the trees and the blue skies above reflect on the surface of the blue water…

   On shore, automobiles, trucks and motorcycles complete a pilgrimage – to Evansville, our home because of the Grey Lady. Family members who live in Evansville have prepared for the arrival of family members who live distances away and everyone looks forward to the arrival of the matriarch who brings us all together – LST 325.

   As family members arrive, hugs and handshakes abound. Voices are full of happiness and anticipation. Expressions are of joy and fun. Family members are greeted with laughter, tears, and stories of the past. Like Papa boats returning to their mother ship, family members gather at the home place.

   This reunion, the anticipation grows stronger as the matriarch is not in residence! Telephone calls are made and the news spreads. Everyone gathers at the river to see our loved one arrive home with her precious cargo of family. Evening falls and the night arrives with stars twinkling in the sky. Soon, a beacon of light is seen with the Ensign of our Nation illuminated. What a beautiful sight!

   NOW the family reunion can begin in earnest!

Family members continue to arrive throughout the next day, each one anticipated and looked for by those already in attendance. The Hospitality Rooms are busy, providing refreshments for travelers and an opportunity to catch up on the news and events in each others lives. Always the conversation turns to the mother ship, the projects that have been completed, those begun, the recent River Cruise, and memories of the past.

   Many events have been planned for those in attendance – a historical visit to Vincennes, shopping trips to the local stores, a reception on the main deck of LST 325, a banquet where each family member can break bread with each other and a wonderful dance to celebrate.

   The most anticipated events are the cruises provided. As veterans arrive, one can truly see the spring in their step, a smile on their lips and tears in their eyes. Safety instructions are given, refreshing the memories of years gone by. One Sailor in dress blues stops at the end of the gangway and asks permission to come aboard. As permission is given by a smiling female crew member, other queries… “Sailor! What is your service number?” His family stands open mouthed as he reels off the number from memory, taking less than one second to reply. Said Sailor is then given a hug and told to enjoy his cruise. His family is amazed that a number from 60 years ago is recalled without pause until he relates that the number was critical for him to receive sustenance – physical and monetary!

   As the vibration of the engines can be felt underfoot, many a Sailor can be seen smiling as the aroma of diesel reaches them. Snipes smile… it truly makes them feel at home again. Deck apes visibly move toward the lines in an instinctive gesture when the call to cast off is heard, but then fall back, allowing today’s crew to handle them. Skivvy wavers gaze above to see the Ship full dressed to salute their arrival; Coxswains watch the LCVP maneuver in the river, ready to follow the ship on her cruises this day. An additional treat is a DUKW and an LVT! The aroma of coffee wafts from the galley, enticing some to try a cup o’ Joe. Many Sailors are seen posing for photos next to ‘their’ gun, with their children or wives, others peer off into the sea breeze of 60 years ago. Each one finds their way to pay homage and remember…

   At Friday’s banquet, a few minutes are taken to solemnly remember those who are missing. The Ship’s Chaplain and Captain conduct the Missing Man Ceremony and the quiet is palpable. One feels the spirits of those who have passed and those who have not been returned to their homeland. There is more than one tear shed. We honor the memories of those who are missing from every war, peacetime and every branch of service. Breaking bread together is one of the most moving ways to share with each other as a family. With varied backgrounds and circumstances, the sharing of a communal meal is a poignant act symbolizing a commonality of purpose, the commitment to the well being of the whole. Unity. Togetherness. Comeraderie. Devotion. Thanksgiving. Let us never forget.

   As the week draws to a close, one last gathering takes place. It is one of celebration, the music floating throughout the hotel. Dancers move around the floor, toasts are made by those seated at tables, laughter trills in accompaniment to the sounds of the brass singing songs from the 40’s.

   These are the times that make beautiful memories. As family members depart, promises are being made, God willing, we will see each other at the next gathering of family. We are bound by very strong lines… lines from the LST 325.


Progress Report Update
Posted October 07, 2008
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John Vize checking ahead to keep us safe on the river trip.(photo by: Sid Hisel) Beautiful Sunset on the river.(photo by: Sid Hisel) Even Gary our pilot got into the act of blowing those whistles.(photo by: Sid Hisel)

Bill Morgan showing off the clean galley. (photo by: Sid Hisel) Morning sunrise in Hannibal.(photo by: Tamara Hisel) Singing group serenading the gift shop ladies. (photo by Jo Watt).

Huck Finn and Becky Thatcher With Tammy Hisel when they stopped to say Hello.(photo by: Dianne Hill) Captain Jornlin giving one of his many tours.(photo by: Tamara Hisel) LST 325 preparing to leave Hannibal, what a wonderful city.(photo by: Tamara Hisel)

The ship heading upriver from Hannibal (Please read the post).(photo by: Tamara Hisel) Sandra Scherer and Sandie Tull await the ship arrival in Moline.(photo by: Tamara Hisel) Our Mod squad plus one in Moline.(photo by: Tamara Hisel)

Bride and Groom married for only 1 hour come to visit the ship.(photo by: Garry Hisel) Parachute made wonderful shade in the 90 degree weather.(photo by: Garry Hisel) Ron Coleman raising the Colors.(photo by: Garry Hisel)

Larry Hahn saluting during the call to Colors.(photo by: Garry Hisel) WW II veteran nurse visited the ship in Moline.(photo by: Garry Hisel) Our Champion membership salesman Bing (over 1400 sold with some help).(photo by: Garry Hisel)

Isn't she pretty while docked in Moline.(photo by: Garry Hisel) Our new gangway worked great allowing people to enter through the bow doors.(photo by: Garry Hisel) Hiram (Too Tall) having his knot tying skills inspected by Bob.(photo by: Garry Hisel)

Progress Report Update
Posted August 15, 2008
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#1 Ray finishes installing another safety guard on the main switchboard in the engine room.
#2 Marvin goes over the finer points of a 40mm mount to a group of Cub and Boy Scouts.
#3 Pete is caught retouching and priming spots around the ship.

#4 Jim walks a safety patrol around the barge while the scouts render a salute to their leaders and parents.
#5 Pete prepares thermostat wire for the new A/C units.
#6 All of Ray's work is not with metal. He's cutting a guard for the main switchboard.

#7 Harry wires a panel for power to the new A/C unit in the crews berthing spaces.
#8 Dave runs wiring through crews berthing spaces.
#9 Ray and Pete look on as our resident metal smith forms a plenum for the air conditioning system.

#10 You can never have too much light to work by. Does this remind you of WPA??
#11 Jim, who will be one of the ships cooks on the upcoming cruise gets some early practice.
#12 The con is sporting a new coat of paint. It really looks good. This work was done by Bob, Walley, Roy and others.

#13 This is a typical scene around the ship these days as cruise crew members pack their locker in preparation for leaving for the great north.
#14 Dave just seems to move from one project to another. Now he's on the tank deck continuing his work.
#15 Ray and Nick are up to their elbows in the bilges.

#16 Gene puts the finishing touches on the new water heater for the crews shower.
#17 Jerry prepares to do repair work on the main lube oil filters.
#18 Kenny, Ray and Harry are continuing to do check out work on the new generator.

#19 Stores are loaded aboard for the cruise. Sam and Pete pass cases down to the reefer and dry storage.
#20 Mike cuts cake for the reception given him before he turns over Executive Director duties to his successor.
#21 Anna and Kenny lend a hand moving stores for the cruise.

#22 Jim carries stores into the reefer. If you look close you may be able to see frost on his knees. It is COLD in there.

This completes the final progress report before sailing. For those of us who are unable to go on the trip, we will see you back here when the ship returns. We wish the ship and crew smooth sailing with fair winds and a following sea............

Progress Report Update
Posted August 9, 2008
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#1 Our faithful Marines are continuing to make progress in refurbishing the starboard aft 40mm gun mount. And they've put one of the grandsons to work with them.
#2 The new main generator has arrived. Ray, Kenny and Ray study the situation to see the best way to remove the generator and base from the enclosed trailer.
#3 Ron to the rescue again. With the equipment that Ron makes available to us the generator was snaked out of the trailer.

#4 The generator was extracted from the trailer and loaded onto Ron's flat bed truck for the trip to the rivers edge.
#5 More friends of LST 325 came to our aid as the generator had to be moved from the flatbed to the ship. This was accomplished by means of the Luhr Brothers barge and crane. What a miraculous piece of timing to have Luhr Brothers dredging in the close vicinity of the ship. And they are so gracious in lending us assistance. We cannot thank them enough.
#6 Before the new generator can be set in place the old one must be removed. The Capt., Kenny and Terry look on as the crane is attached to the old generator.

#7 The old generator is lifted away to be set on the deck of the work barge.
#8 The old generator is landed on the barge deck next to the new generator.
#9 First to come aboard is the base and fuel tank for the new generator. The generator sits directly on the base and fuel tank.

#10 How many red shirts does it take to sweep a clean spot on the deck????  Sorry guys.
#11 This is the equipment made available to us by Luhr Brothers Towing.
#12 The new generator is lifted on to the ship.

#13 The generator is nestled onto the base/fuel tank.
#14 Kenny and Terry get the first up close look at the internals of the generator. It is now in place and secured aboard LST 325.
#15 Jim installs an anchor for a safety chain in the engine room.
#16 Walley primes newly chipped areas on the con.
#17 Dave is priming around the shore power hookup.
#18 Bob continues to needle gun the con.

#19 This safety screen has been mounted at the end of the switchboard in the engine room.
#20 Roy has painted the port spud lockers and is now working on the life jacket locker.
#21 If anyone remembers what aft fire control tub looked like you would not recognize it now. Thanks to Larry, Bob and others.
#22 The Marines have pretty well finished this gun mount. It really looks great...
#23 Pete has already begun to work on the wiring for the new generator.
#24 Dave and Nick continue to work of getting the generator up and running.

Progress Report Update
Posted July 12, 2008
Click on thumbnails for larger image

#1. It is a constant job to replace and add new wiring circuits. Harry is drilling a pilot hole to route a new circuit.
#2. For those of you who remember what the old boiler room looked like you might not recognize it now. The entire area has been chipped, primed and painted. The bulkheads and overhead have been spray painted thanks to Bill Morgan. The deck will be the last to be finished. More later....
#3. In another area of the ship from where Harry was wiring, Dave is also running a fresh circuit. Dave was lucky enough to use an existing bulkhead conduit.

#4. More of the new wiring. Harry found an old steam line that he just fell in love with. Big hug, Harry.
#5. Gene, Harry and Dave work on the controls for the elevator. This was discovered when using the elevator to move the bottled water for the summer cruise to the tank deck.
#6. Wally welds a new bulkhead bracket in the boiler room. This area is coming along nicely.

#7. Ray checks with Wally on the progress he is making. The beauty of our maintenance dept is that they are self starters and always keep the job moving.
#8. Larry puts the finishing touches on the aft fire control tub. This has been an ongoing job.
#9. Bob gives Larry a hand on the aft fire control tub. This detail work can take awhile.

#10. Out on the main deck, Ron is chipping the area of the deck where memorial services are held. This will make a much better presentation when the services are held.
#11. Not all the maintenance jobs on the ship are heavy and dirty. There are lots of small jobs that are just as important as the big ones. Jim is repairing a cabinet door latch in the galley.
#12. Now that the bulkheads and overhead in the boiler room have been spray painted, Roy prepares to roll on the finish deck paint.

#13. Wally is welding brackets onto the bulkhead in the starboard aft bos'n locker. These brackets will hold needle guns, grinder, and other tools.
#14. When Bob comes aboard to work you never know where or what he'll be doing. Just that he'll be doing something productive and doing it well. Here he begins needle gunning the con. He's moving up in the world.
#15. One of the most dreaded jobs a guy has to do is paperwork. Ray is catching up and making notes.

#16. Gene pipes up the new oil purifier. Even without the engines running it's a hot place to work.
#17 Back in the early spring when the river reached flood stage Ray could reach up and touch the top of one of our mooring cells. Now that summer has come and the river is back to summer pool, it's a different story. On the right, Ray models his new full cover Stearns life vest and shows the difference.
#18.  Dave salvages another light fixture.

#19. The lathe in the machine shop has not had a lot of activity in a long, long time. Gene is taking on the project of getting it up and running again.

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