A reunion of former members, leaders, and friends of SSS Davy Jones was held on Wednesday, May 17, 2006, at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church (a former ship sponsor), in Greensboro, NC. The event was scheduled from 1100 hours until 1500 hours and was attended by an estimated 50-60 persons! All expectations were exceeded!
The entire time at the reunion was spent with friends reminiscing and catching up on the 65 years since many of them had been in Ship 3 together. Skipper Charles T. Hagan, Jr., was present as a young 93-year old! Wayne Farrar who is director and curator of Hammerstone Scout Museum in Lillington, NC, displayed the original Davy Jones log book for 1941 and presented a slide show of many photos from the ship's early history.
Those attending the Reunion are invited to send comments or anecdotes from their Sea Scout experiences they would like to share on this site to Bob Roberts at firstname.lastname@example.org Carroll Sasser at SasserRC@aol.com.
From J. Richard Miller, High Point, NC -- 6/9/06:
This past May 17th, we all had a chance to gather once again at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in Greensboro to renew old friendships, memories, tall tales, and pictures of the Davy Jones Sea Scouting days,
This reunion was a grand occasion and was well represented by old Sea Scouts as well as younger members who enjoyed the high point of sailing activities from the mid-1930's through the 1960's.
The Davy Jones Sea Scout ship passed into history in 1998 and is now a wonderful memory, but interest in Sea Scouting (now part of Venturing) remains positive, because nationally this is the fastest growing segment of Scouting. In addition, U.S. Power Squadron has adopted a policy of promoting Sea Scouting throughout its organization.
In 2001, through the efforts of a local attorney, another Sea Scout ship was "commissioned" and is sponsored by First Baptist Church. This ship operates from the same High Rock Lake base (named Charles T. Hagan Sea Scout Base) and also from The Carolina Marina located at Belews Creek Lake 27 miles north of Greensboro.
As was true in years past, equipment and marine materials are hard to come by, being provided mainly by donations ... This current ship has four Catalina 22 class sailboats, two 420 class sailboats, and a 16-ft. Hobie Cat, along with a complement of 14 Sea Scouts who appear as interested in seafaring as the old Davy Jones members were.
The current Sea Scout ship (ship 3) is today in need of your support to help promote and maintain this Sea Scouting effort. I am requesting any financial contribution you can give to this ship. Our current need is for a 5-10-hp long-shaft outboard motor and a sailboat trailer for a 14-ft. 420 class sailboat. All contributions are tax deductible. Please send your contributions or contact me regarding donations.
(Richard can be contacted at Ashley Manor, Inc., P.O. Box 477, High Point, NC 27261 or by telephone toll free to 1-800-582-1401.)
From Shipmate/Quartermaster Bob McAllister, Fuquay-Varina, NC -- 5/22/06:
Attending the Sea Scout Reunion was an emotional experience for me. My family moved to Greensboro in 1937. My brother Jean and I were already Eagle Scouts, so we first joined Boy Scout Troop 5, I think, at the First Baptist Church. We soon learned that Sea Scout Ship 3 was alive and well, and was called Sea Scout Ship Davy Jones. How could we pass that up? Being ardent Scouts already, Jean and I jumped right in. Regular Ship meetings and trips to the Sea Scout camp at High Rock Lake, became our favorite activities. We rose in rank and responsibility steadily and became Quartermaster [Sea] Scouts after much work and dedicationalso called lots of fun. Being a member of the Sea Scout Ship Davy Jones when it was selected National Flagship in 1939 was a thrill and an achievement to be savored and treasured for a lifetime.
The Reunion was a joyful time, renewing long-interrupted friendships. Bob Roberts ... had assembled a list of men who had been Sea Scouts in the period from 1939 through about 1950 or so. About 45 to 50 were able to attend the meeting. We started the meeting with an opening prayer.
Gracious God, we thank you for bringing us together to renew long-interrupted friendships.
Help us to lead others to you, Lord, through Boy Scouting and Sea Scouting. Give us your
Spirit Lord, and bind us together in your love. Amen.
Wayne Farrar from the Hammerstone [Scout] Museum in Lillington presented a slide show of pictures of Sea Scouts, and the Hagan Sea Scout activities at High Rock Lake. Carroll Sasser had an exhibit promoting Sea Scouting. Several spouses were there. Everyone enjoyed old friends and sharing experiences as Scouts. I met two of my close friends from our Sea Scout days, and talking with them touched me deeply. Two special groups of guests were the sons of Charles T. Hagan, Jr., and the sons of Ralph Deaton. Charles Hagan was the Skipper of the Sea Scout Ship Davy Jones, when we were awarded the National Flagship honors. Skipper Hagan was a kind and great leader of the Ship and beloved by all.
Ralph Deaton was Assistant Skipper (or maybe First Mate), and was the role model Sea Scout leader for all of us. Ralph was a Quartermaster Sea Scout, I am sure. He was a hero figure for me because he knew more about seamanship than anyone I have ever known. He was a good and patient teacher of Scouting and seamanship skills. He, too, was beloved by all.
That the sons of our two greatest leaders came to the reunion was their tribute to their fathers, and also to all of us former Sea Scouts. The ultimate tribute to us all was when Charles T. Hagan, Jr, himself, came to the meeting. A hush fell over everyone, and a line formed quickly to pay respects to our leader. Skipper Hagan is in his early 90s and moves slowly with the aid of a walker. It was touching how his sons gathered around their father with tender love and respect, helping him to a chair. I had the pleasure of talking with him for several minutes. His voice is not strong, but he spoke as lucidly as ever and his mind is still very sharp. He told me incidents about my brother Jean that I never knew. What a dear and gentle man and what a marvelous opportunity it was to chat with him.
Our reunion was not planned to have an agenda or to make plans for the future, but I feel it was worthwhile and a grand success. I expect that the reunion will inspire more organized effort for strengthening Sea Scouting in Greensboro and elsewhere in North Carolina.