Reunion Group Report

February 2012



Dan and Katie Suchy did an excellent job of organizing our Pittsburgh reunion. The Sheraton Station Square Hotel served as our headquarters. This hotel was located in a restored entertainment area that provided for most of our food and drink needs. Our Saturday banquet was attended by 50 registrants. We appreciate the generosity of the Frank B. Fuhrer Wholesale Company for their donation of beer


Thursday, President RF Johnson led the memorial service at the Soldiers & Sailors Hall. We then toured the Nationality Rooms at the University of Pittsburgh – the “Cathedral of Learning.” Next, we toured the beautiful Phipps Conservatory with its mix of exotic plants and Chihuly glass sculpture.


Friday, we enjoyed a guided bus tour of Pittsburgh and visited the Heinz History Center, showcasing the history of Western Pennsylvania, particularly Pittsburgh and the contribution of the H. J. Heinz Company. Personally, I believe Pittsburgh  did an excellent job of recovery after Big Steel left. No longer a grimy mill town, Pittsburg evolved into an attractive, friendly, cosmopolitan city with much to offer the visitor.


Again, the highlight of our reunion was the Saturday evening buffet, raffle, and dance. The Traveling Sailor was won by Jerry Tannahill of Arlington, VA whom we hope to see this year when he passes it on to the next recipient. It was our pleasure to celebrate the 90th birthday of Ms. Helen La Roche, widow of WWII Sproston shipmate, James E. La Roche. Ms La Roche joined us in Pittsburgh with her daughter, Marilyn La Roche-Dawson, RN.



We thank the following people for their generous raffle gift contributions and apologize for any donations omitted:


Orville and Ruth Amos                    Dan and Katie Suchy                           Leon Muellner

Donald Kelly                                   Richard and Paulette Bacci                  Tom and Linda Johnson

Len and Mary Doran                       Robert and Patricia Medeiros              Bill and Beverly Raupach

Bobby Nazarenus                            Barry and Peggy Georges                   Mike and Lethea Holmes

Tin Can Sailors                                RF and Arlene Johnson                       Jon Johnson

StarKist Tuna Company



The business meeting was called to order Saturday at 0935 by President RF Johnson. Treasurer’s report was read by Orville Amos and deemed to be correct by auditor Tony Filosa. RF Johnson was reelected president, Orville Amos was reelected treasurer, and Michael Bereskin was reelected secretary. David Yates was elected director to serve a three-year term, replacing Leon Muellner. Paulette Bacci, wife of Richard Bacci was introduced as our new webmaster. We discussed the possibility of a cruise for our 2013 reunion to be researched by RF Johnson. Subsequently, I learned that this plan isn’t feasible because of cost and time factors. As has been our custom, treasury money was added to the bar proceeds to total a donation of $500. This year that amount was sent to Wounded Warriors Family Support, a respected organization providing support to the service families of those wounded, injured or killed in combat. Business meeting adjourned at 1025.


Sunday morning we said good-bye at our farewell buffet breakfast. Thanks to all the photographers for sharing their images.



Plans for our 12-16 September 2012 Kansas City reunion are well underway. Reunion chairman Orville Amos secured The Westin Kansas City at Crown Center Hotel for $99/night + tax, auto parking will be extra. Crown Center is a magnificent complex of over 60 hotels, restaurants, theaters, shops, and the Amtrak depot connected by a glass-enclosed walkway. Hotel contact information, transportation details from MCI Airport, and reunion registra­tion will be provided in my second mailing which you will receive in June. Our Kansas City itinerary includes: tours of the Harry S. Truman Presidential Library and Museum where we will conduct our memorial service, the National WWI Museum, and the Hallmark Cards Visitors Center. I know Orville has planned to treat us to that famous Kansas City barbeque. Please remember that you will receive only one registration package.



Since our reunion we have been notified of the passing of the following shipmates:

Klein, Don                                                        LT                                Korea                              Nov 2011

Gilson, Richard                                                 BTCS                          Vietnam                            Nov 2011

Roshua, Wayne L.                                            SN                               Cold War                         Jan 2012

Burleigh, Don J.                                                QM1                            Cold War                         Sep 2010

Waskom, William                                              RM2                            WWII                              Oct 2006

 May they rest in peace. Our sincere condolences to their families. They will be remembered at our memorial service in Kansas City.


Len Doran, manager of the Ship’s Store, has many items for sale. Especially attractive are the embroidered items which are of considerably higher quality than the silk screened items. Merchandise such as caps, patches, golf shirts and the book, History of the USS Sproston by George Ress can be viewed and ordered by going to the Sproston website, and clicking on “Ship’s Store.” Len can also be contacted directly at or by snail mail: Len Doran, 820 Bengal Rd., Neenah WI 54956. You may also order by printing the order form from our online website. Make checks payable to Len Doran. All prices include shipping.


Our Sproston website is the place to get reunion information, shipmate e-mail addresses, access photo­graphs, join the Sproston Reunion Group and see ship’s store items. Please contact Robert Johnson, President or Michael Bereskin, Secretary if have questions or your address or e-mail changes.


I expect that this reunion will be a great opportunity for fellowship, to catch up on shipmates’ lives, share memories, retell sea stories, and visit a new city. I hope to share good times with all who can join us Kansas City and break bread with shipmate friends. –- Michael Bereskin, ET2



Robert Johnson, President                         Orville Amos, Treasurer                         Michael Bereskin, Secretary                         Paulette Bacci, Webmistress                   816-483-2710                                                 



Previous Reunion Reports

April 2008 Report      
January 2009 Report  January 2010 Report    March 2011 Report  
May 2006 Report        July 2006 Report       January 2007 Report    May 2007 Report        July 2007 Report      November 2007 Report                                                                   
January 2004 Report  
May 2004 Report       January 2005 Report     May 2005 Report        July 2005 Report     December 2005 Report                                                      
Archived Reunion Reports from December 1999-July 2003