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It's 10 in a Row for Fremont (cont'd)
Thirty-two Fremont sailors, led by John H. Soucy, boatswain's mate first class, make up the boat group. The men watch each other and when one does something special, the others pick it up. New men aboard soon realize they're in fast company.
As a salute to all the men in the past 10 years who have helped Fremont earn the 10 awards, the man with the longest time aboard, Richard A. McBride, boilerman second class, received a special plaque from Commander Amphibious Force.
Only Fremont can display the new plaque, for it was specially designed and authorized for the 10th award. Seaman Richard L. Snow won an insignia contest held after Fremont realized adequate hashmark room was lacking on the bridge. Approval came from the Chief of Naval Operations.
Any other ship that can equal Fremont's 10 straight can also paint on the insignia. But for a year at least, only Fremont's bridge will have the honor.
About 200 dependents of Fremont's crew attended the ceremony in Norfolk. Then they were taken to sea for a one-day cruise to watch their men demonstrate their skills.
Former commanding officers who helped the ship win its 10 awards also were invited to the ceremony.
Now, Fremont will have to lay her amphibious assault award on the line this fall or early winter.
Fremont men aren't unduly concerned. By this time, they hope they know how to win.
Joe M. Law, JOCM, USN