June 17, 1775


6-17-75: Bunker Hill Day.  I have just finished gobbling up Season 3 of Turn, AMC’s ambitious retelling of the Revolutionary War (seen through the eyes of “Washington’s Spies.”) If you haven’t watched this fascinating show, the action in Massachusetts (Paul Revere, the Battles at Concord and Lexington, the Battle at Bunker Hill, etc.) are in the past.  What we see is Washington fighting on a shoestring and a prayer . . .  the outcome is ALWAYS in doubt.  There is treachery everywhere.  As season 3 ends with General Benedict Arnold’s defection to the British Army for less-than-noble-reasons, we get a peek at Washington’s new and shaky alliance with France.  Without France’s help (sworn enemies of England), Washington and his rag-tag Army would not have won Our War of Independence.

Not too long ago many Americans excoriated France for not joining the “coalition” of countries willing to back our invasion of Iraq.  We seem to forget that nations act in their own best interests, and that our best interests do not always align with theirs and vice-versa.  The world, and the history of the world and its wars is complicated and nuanced.  When I think about the history of humanity, it seems that War is somehow the common thread, and that all Wars are somehow related to events in the past, even hundreds of years later.

6-17-44: The war in Europe rages on. Allied forces move on from the D-Day beaches in Normandy; paratroopers and armored units move from the hedgerows to block the German advance.  Fighting continues all across the Mediterranean.  In the Pacific, Task Force 58, engaged in strikes against the Bonin Islands and the Marianas, steam to rendezvous west of Guam.  Intelligence reports indicate the Imperial Japanese Navy is heading towards Saipan and Tinian.  The ships begin to assemble into a massive battle line, in anticipation of the impending “Battle of the Philippine Sea” (6/19/44)

6-17-72:  Watergate Day.  If you are not old enough to remember this day, I urge you to google it and read about it.

6-17-XX: Steve’s birthday.

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Nicholas Zeoli, RdM3c

Memorial Day, 2017

Nick Zeoli (l) with his brother Gene

Nicholas Zeoli is a Boston plankowner, reporting aboard on Commissioning Day (June 30, 1943).  During his service on the ship, he was promoted to RadarMan, 3rd class.  Having been part of all the action on CA-69, he mustered off the ship on 12/26/45 and headed for Home.  (Best Christmas ever, Nick?)

One of our Facebook Group members, Marty Irons, pointed out that Nick was one of the Featured Veterans this last Saturday (5/27/17) in the Fair Haven, VT Memorial Day Parade.

Picture submitted by Nick’s son, Chris Zeoli. 

Happiest Memorial Day post since we started this website.



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Roland W Roberts, S1c


Roland was an original Boston crewmember.  He mustered aboard on Commissioning Day (6/30/43), and was a ship’s Plankowner.  He served through all the action, including post-war Occupation Duty.  He left the ship on January 20, 1946.  Picture submitted by his son, John Roberts.

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John A. Hartman, WT3c

May 2, 2017

John A. Hartman was a Boston Plankowner  –  an original crewmember who came aboard the ship on Commissioning Day – June 30, 1943.  He was still aboard the Boston after the ship returned to the states after Occupation Duty, mustering off on March 2, 1946.  Pics compliments of his son Dan.

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Catch-up Time

Knee surgery 7 weeks ago today.  Coming along nicely, but still at least a month before I can go back to work (ugh!).  Now, I realize this is all incredibly important news to the inhabitants of planet Earth . . .

Several more or less recent posts to our Facebook Group page  (you’re not a member, you say????) that should have made it onto this site, haven’t yet.  Let’s start here, with sad news from Dan Moore:

I’m very sorry to announce the passing of my grandfather, Richard “Hoppy” Hopkins. He died last Saturday, peacefully, at home, with his wife of 72 years and his family by his side.

Dick served aboard the USS Boston for 806 days—from June 30, 1942 (S2c), to November 6, 1945 (S1c). After his discharge from the Navy, he went on to serve for 23 years in the USAF, as a Deputy Sheriff near his home in Maine, as a Chief of Operations for Federal Protective Services, and as a branch manager for the FAA.

Most of my time spent with Gramps was during his retirement. He was a man beyond compare, and every Saturday I would take him to his American Legion post for drinks with his comrades. The oldest member by far, Gramps would sit there proudly in his CA-69 hat and give hell to the youngins.

A couple of years back, I bought him the set of “Baked Beans” books. He never talked about the war; he lost many friends and loved ones, including a brother in Normandy. But he did get a kick out of paging through those books!

I love you, Grampy. Rest in peace.



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