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"Less than a year ago we were at the point of wondering . . . wondering how the fate of tihe Aaron
Ward would fit into the destinies of the war. From the start' she established herself a happy ship and
gradually she became an efficient one. But this degree of efficiency came after long and strenuous drill
sessions . . . day after day, perfecting our jobs a little better so that we could be ready when we were
called upon. Our story has been told a hundred times. To this l only want to add that l'm proud and grateful
to have served with such a fine group of officers and men of the Aaron Ward." 1
RAYMOND BEISMEYER, First Lieutenant. .
"l want to join all officers in expressing my feelings to the ship and her crew. The road we have
traveled together as shipmates has been a rough but pleasant one. From the early days of Point Montara,
the U.'S.S. Foote, and Tl to this very day, my work has been relatively simple. Thru your eagerness to
learn and do w-ell in your various gunnery duties, our ship was blessed with gun crews that the Navy can
well be proud of. Victory is ours today, and you have contributed largely to that cherished goal. But let
us not f-orget the 'heritage that our dead have bequeath-ed us, and thru the years strive to make ourselves
worthy of their sacrifice."
LEFTAERTS LAVRAKAS, Gunnery Officer.
"The Medical Department extends a hearty thank-you to the crew of the Aaron Ward for the
courtesies, flavors, and cooperation you have given us. We assure you that we derived sincere pleasure
and ecstacy in administering your typhoid and tetanusshots, and wish we might have more opportunities
to repeat the same in the future. Seriously-the first aid rendered by the cre-w on the evening of May 3
was most admirable. As you know, our medical department was swamped witth work during the first few'
hours, and your help aided tremendously. The wounded were a patient and understanding group of men,
and endured their suffering without complaint. On several occasions, injured men ref-used immediate
treatment on the grounds that other men were more seriously wounded. ln short, it was a grand job, done
by a grand cre-w. lt has been a pleasure working with you."
IOHN BARBTERI, Ship's Doctor.
"On board the AW, the communication department. holds one claim to fame. Namely, the hirsute
facial adornments Cbeards, to you guysl that blossomed during the cruise into tthe Pacific. All in all, within
this de-partment were represented the ugliest, the best looking, the blackest, the reddest, and the curliest
beards on the ship. We regret, however, that the claim to the beard par excellence goes to Kennedy, a
pharm'acist's mate. Too bad we lost out there. But beards or no beards, we've had a dog-gone good bunch
of Communicators. T Not many heroes are made as communicators, but they've all done a top-notch job. T
f 1 ei h T T f '
ee pm fo we been that boss LEoN woonsriDE,cemmue1eeueee Officer.
"As chief engineer it has been my pleasure to chase all the "deck apes" out of the engineering
spaces. We have beennice enough to provide hot and cold water to the rest of the ship, and in our
generous manner, keep you cool in the hot climes, and warm in cold weatfher. These were our secondary
functions. 'Our primary job was serving the ship and driving her thru the water. lfeel the "gang" has done
its job in an excellent manner. To all the men, who will soon scatter far and wide, I wish you smooth sailing
ld ' . f rf .
an Success m Your mme le DoNALD YOUNG, Chief Engineer.
"One of the least known and ye-t most important departments aboard ship is the Commissary
Department. The ship's cooks and bakers are men who work hard to provide for the comfort and nourish-
ment of the crew. ln all our travels, we of the Commissary Gang have tried our utmost to keep up the
spirit. lt makes us very 'happy to know that we have accomplished our purpose."
ROBERT RAGAN, Chief Commissary Steward.
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