There's something about working on the water that appeals to recreational voters. And when you can work on the water while in service to your country, that's icing on the cake.
Yeah I know, watermen work real hard for real small pay. There are certain risks involved in Naval service to your country. Ah, but those Navy vessels are so much...more expensive than I can afford.
It's still good to see the Postal Service, the "other USPS," offer a 44-cent stamp series honoring Distinguished Sailors. The stamps were issued in February 2010 and are available online.
Here's the Postal Service's description:
"With the issuance of the Distinguished Sailors stamp, the U.S. Postal Service® honors a tradition of excellence in the U.S. Navy that began with the authorization for two warships by the Continental Congress on October 13, 1775. These stamps commemorate four sailors who served with bravery and distinction during the 20th Century: William S. Sims, Arleigh A. Burke, John McCloy, and Doris Miller. The stamp pane identifies the four sailors, the approximate date of each photograph, and a ship named in honor of each sailor."
Four sailors are honored.
William S. Sims, Admiral, USN, Commanded U.S. Naval Forces in Europe during World War I and later was president of the Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island. He instigated the effort to improve naval gunnery after the Spanish American war and was effective at mobilizing forces during the Great War, especially in anti-submarine warfare. He was not, however, happy with support received from the Navy Department and was critical in the post-war period. Congress found that his charges had merit, but did not go along with his suggestion wrest authority from civilian leadership in wartime.
Side Note: Sims directed his attacks at Secretary of the Navy Josephus Daniels, but the
department was run by the assistant secretary and future U.S. president Franklin D. Roosevelt. It was Roosevelt's comment to Roger Upton in 1912 to take his boating safety movement "national" that led Upton to found United States Power Squadrons. Upton made a number of visits between 1914 and 1919 to the Navy Department in Washington D.C. to visit Daniels and Roosevelt in pursuit of that movement. USPS proclaimed Roosevelt an honorary Power Squadron member from the late 1930s until his death in 1945.
Arleigh Burke, Admiral, USN, Fighting admiral during World War II. Best known as "31 knot" Burke for aggressively driving his destroyer squadron to the near-breaking point of their boilers. He served as chief of staff to Vice Admiral Marc Mitscher. As such he played a leadership role in the naval battles of the Philippine Sea, Leyte Gulf and Okinawa. Burke served three terms as Chief of Naval Operations in the Eisenhower Administration. He lends his name to a class of guided missile destroyers.
John McCloy, Medals Of Honor Winner, USN, Talk about your fighting sailors, McCloy is one of only 19 individuals to win two Congressional Medals Of Honor. During the 1900 Boxer Rebellion, McCloy distinguished himself during the effort to rescue members of the foreign community in Peking (Beijing), China. In 1914, Chief Boatswain McCloy was in charge of three picket boats unloading men and supplies during the American operation in Veracruz, Mexico. When his boats came under fire, McCloy pushed away from the pier, exposing himself, to direct fire at the enemy. Though wounded in the thigh, McCloy remained on the water in the boat for 48 hours. In 1919 while serving as a lieutenant on the USS Curlew, McCloy further distinguished himself for sweeping mines from the North Sea after World War I. McCloy was awarded the Navy Cross for that service. Whew!