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The following story appears Winter 2009 issue:

CONSTITUTION'S GUARDIAN (page 3 of 4)

How does a guy who has spent much of his career aboard modern warships and involved with the most high tech weapons systems end up commanding CONSTITUTION. Granted, CONSTITUTION was state of the art -- but that was 200 years ago. There were actually two questions: one was "how" and the other was "why." The "why" question he answered by relaying two stories from his childhood.

Story #1: When Dave was a kid of about 10 or 11 growing up in Nahant, a peninsula town north of Boston, his Dad built him an 11' sailboat, which began his love of sailing. One summer morning, he announced to his mother that he was taking the boat out for a sail. His destination, which he had neglected to mention, was The Graves, rocky ledges several miles offshore atop which sits Graves Light. Later that afternoon after sailing for quite a while, Dave heard a voice coming from what he described as a gray-colored Navy boat.

 "Hey, kid, you alright?" Dave responded that he was.

 "Where're you goin?" the voice asked.

"Graves," Dave replied.

"Where did you come from?" the voice asked next.

At that point, Dave turned to look back toward Nahant and realized that he wasn't quite sure where he had left it. Dave did have a compass on board but probably hadn't taken a reading on the way out; he was just heading for the light house clearly visible on the horizon. However, the return trip would be a little tougher; from a distance, Nahant no longer stood out from all the other towns that blended together to form the coastline.

The voice helped him out with a compass bearing to get him home. It was 7 or 8pm by the time Dave made it back, and his father was pacing the dock, naturally concerned for his son's wellbeing. "His face was as white as this," Dave said picking up a cloth napkin from his dining room table. "He said, 'put that boat on the mooring and get in here.'" His father took the boat away for a year, and it "just built my love for sailing even more."

 

 

The following story appears Winter 2009 issue:

CONSTITUTION'S GUARDIAN (page 3 of 4)

 USS CONSTITUTION -- U.S. Navy Photo

Story #2: No too long after the sailboat incident, the Cashman family took a trip into Boston for a tour of the USS CONSTITUTION. The ship clearly had an impact on Dave, and he really never forgot about her. Whenever he was on leave from the navy visiting his family in Nahant, he always made a point of going to Boston to see CONSTITUTION. He knew some of the skippers -- they had served together -- but he was really visiting his ship; she just wasn't his yet! That brings us to "how" Dave Cashman assumed command of the oldest warship afloat.

Once Dave made commander, he had the opportunity to periodically fill out the navy's "dream sheet" indicating where he would most like to serve. Dave described the form as having four spaces in which to write your desired stations in order of preference. At every opportunity, Commander Cashman completed the form by writing in 1) USS CONSTITUTION, 2) USS CONSTITUTION, 3) USS CONSTITUTION, 4) USS CONSTITUTION. Apparently, this approach had not gone unnoticed.

  Next Page of Story:   < 1 >   < 2 >   < 3 >   < 4 >

 

 
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      Bone Yard Boats     ***     P.O. Box 1432     ***     Marblehead, MA  01945 42° 30.20'N   70° 50.20'W  
     
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