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New Sea Scout Ship 73 sails into existence in Lake Oswego

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Comissioner Phil Owen, left, and Skipper Tom Helwig stand in front of the local Sea Scout 73 sailboat holding a Sea Scout manual. Sea Scouts will learn the safe operation of the 22-foot Catalina sailboat in order to participate in next year’s sailing season.

Letters of welcome were read from Lake Oswego Mayor Judie Hammerstad and Clackamas County Commissioner Bill Kennemer during the Oct. 2 inaugural meeting of the coed Sea Scout Ship 73 for the Boy Scouts of America (Cascade Pacific Council).

Specifically, Hammerstad thanked the Lake Grove Presbyterian Church for its on-going support of scouting and for providing the adult leadership and meeting quarters for the scouts.

Kennemer noted the importance of safe and courteous boaters.

Lake Grove Presbyterian Associate Pastor Graig Flatch was awarded an honorary membership and a prototype Seaman's cap titled 'Lake Grove Ship' in non-uniform gray lettering.

Former scoutmaster, author and survivorist, Frank Heyl spoke about the Survival Pamphlet he authored years ago and presented to all youth attending a complimentary copy. His teachings, including 'you survive with what you have in your pockets' were cited and leaders pulled flashlights and knives from their pockets with warnings that scouts not take the knives to school or to the airport.

Several youth and adults filled out application forms to join Sea Scout Ship 73.

Tualatin High School students in attendance expressed interest in joining. Leaders stressed that to learn the safe operation of the 22-foot Catalina sailboat to use during next year's sailing season, would take effort and attendance on a regular basis.

A Sea Scout tradition of a training 'Land Ship' was honored by the layout of a ship's deck with rope on the floor of the Hub room of the Lake Grove Presbyterian Church. An antique bell with clear tone was rung, illustrating how the passage of time is signaled aboard ships even today. Appropiate bells are required on ships of over so many feet and are rung to mark the elapse of time during the watch.

Fleet officers present at the meeting, participated in late-September in a non-Sea Scout sailboat sail from Olympia to Seattle, to the Pacific Ocean and Astoria at night, then up the Columbia River to Portland. This trek was mentioned as evidence that the officers are competent instructors for SS Ship 73.

In laying out the ' Land Ship', red flags were attached to the rope to mark the port side of the landship. Nothing green was avaiable to mark the starboard side of the ship, so a green color copy of 'Etiquette for Young People' was placed on the starboard side.

Advancement to the highest Sea Scout rank of quartermaster was noted as an appropriate goal for members of this unit. Vice Commodore Cindy Calderwood spoke about her position in the Cascade Pacific Council as the advancement approving agent. Organizer Van Hoomissen noted he had arranged for her to live across from the Lake Grove Presbyterian Church for SS Ship 73's convenience.

Commisssioner Phil Owen was on hand to explain operation of the 73 boat and noted that six people was a good load for the boat to carry. The boat carries six sails for various conditions of wind and has a Honda 7.5 horse 'kicker' 4 stroke outboard engine which allows it to be operated as a motor boat.

73 Boat Skipper Tom Helwig admitted he was a motorboat fan but was eager to learn sailboating from instructors within the fleet including Jim Clute, sail master for the 29-foot sail boat that 73 scouts had been training on this summer.

Scoutmaster Virgil Pearce released troop members of Troop 432 to view the '73 Boat.'