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Excerpt "All Present and Accounted For"

December 27, 2018



Toward the end of October, on a beautiful, cold morning, the Jarvis was steaming up Cook Inlet toward the city of Anchorage.  There, the crew was looking forward to liberty in the state’s largest city.  However, for Petty Officers Bob Loftin and Jerry Sandors, the relaxation before the arrival would be short-lived. 


Captain Wooley had decided the ship needed to be at ‘full dress’ when the Jarvis anchored at Anchorage. Normally full dress is for special occasions like the 4th of July or a commissioning ceremony, not because of arrival to a city.  As Chief Herman explained to the two petty officers “Captain Wooley wants the display and that ‘full dress’ will be used to build a good image for the Guard.”


Loftin and Sandors, along with Petty Officers Tom Looney, Robert Beaver, and ‘NOLA’ Eaton immediately went to work on the details.  Scaling up the masts, the men attached flags and pennants and snapped them to the cables in proper order.  Strapped high up in the relatively calm, but the freezing breeze, the temperature felt like it was 30 below to the men as they worked feverishly to complete the difficult work.  Despite the conditions though, all was completed by the time Jarvis set the special sea detail for anchoring in Anchorage.


The ship made its grand entrance to Anchorage, much to the delight of the local population.  As Loftin later stated “The willingness of these shipmates to take on and complete a tough job, is testament to the character of the Jarvis crew.”  The next few days were spent entertaining the special VIP guests and hosting an open house for the community to assist with local Coast Guard recruiting efforts for the area. 


On November 6, the Jarvis departed Anchorage to resume fishery patrols, anchoring in Pavlof Bay a week later, shortly after that underway again with anchorage in Dutch Harbor due to approaching storm conditions.   It was here when the Jarvis troubles began.

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