P/R/C Samuel “Skip” A. Woodruff Jr., AP

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Dr. Samuel “Skip” Amos Woodruff Jr., died 14 June 2015 after a long illness. He was 74. Skip was a devoted husband, father, grandfather, brother, and friend who will be missed by all who knew him.

Skip Woodruff

P/R/C Skip Woodruff, AP

Skip was born 18 March 1941 in Elizabethton, Tennessee, to Samuel Amos Woodruff Sr. and Melba (Daley) Woodruff, the oldest of three children. His family moved to Columbus, Ohio, in the mid-1940s. Skip became an Eagle Scout at 17. As a young man, he often traveled to Europe with his mother, a foreign language professor at Ohio State University. He learned to love France and the French culture, and furthered some of his scouting adventures there.

Skip graduated from the University School in 1959, where he was a star athlete, lead performer in the school’s theater program, and student body president. In 1963, he married Susan (“Sudie”) Davis, his high school sweetheart. He went on to graduate from Ohio State University’s College of Dentistry in 1967.

Skip and Sudie worked together for 48 years, establishing a successful dental practice in Worthington, Ohio. In 1975, he was awarded “Boss of the Year” award from the Columbus Dental Assistants Society, and his practice was awarded the Green Jersey Award for outstanding business development from Mercer Advisors in 2008.

Skip’s interests were numerous and varied. He was a Boy Scout leader at Worthington United Methodist Church in the 1970s, president of the Clintonville Academy Parents’ Association in the mid-1980s and a founding member of central Ohio’s Grandparents Living Theater group in 1989. He earned his private pilot’s license and tried sky-diving, spelunking, and repelling. He loved his 1978 Suzuki motorcycle and was a big OSU basketball and football fan. He was passionate about watching the Tour De France every year. As a member of the Ohio River Valley Airedale Terrier Club, he was instrumental in developing the Hunting/Working Committee for the club.

Skip enjoyed sailing and was a life member of the Columbus Sail & Power Squadron. He served as commander, District 29 commander, and Chairman of the National Environmental Committee. He taught several classes in safe boating, weather and leadership.

For many years, Skip also served as president of the Alumni Association of University School. He was a 4th degree member of the Knights of Columbus and a devoted choir member at St. Andrew Catholic Church. He enjoyed spending time in the north woods of Wisconsin with his wife, children, grandchildren and friends.

Skip loved his family deeply, and his friendships lasted a lifetime. He will be greatly missed by all who knew him. He is survived by his devoted wife of almost 52 years, Sudie Davis Woodruff; daughters Sarah (Mark) Obermiller and Marie (Rob) Chiller; his sister, Steffanie (John) Haueisen; brother-in-law, Hugh (Cheryl) Davis; niece, Kristen (Jesse) Kmiec; nephew, Scott (Jenny) Davis; grandchildren, Libby, Mollie and Dominic Obermiller; great-nephew, Ash Kmiec; great-nieces, Neveah and Madison Davis; numerous in-laws and many friends. Skip is preceded in death by his parents and his brother Peter Alden Woodruff.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Knights of Columbus of St. Andrew, Knights of Columbus Council #11275, 1899 McCoy Rd, Columbus, OH 43220.

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P/R/C Robert A. Green, N

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By Gregory T. Scotten

On 6 Feb. 2015, Past Rear Commander Robert A. Green, N, passed away peacefully. He is survived by his wife, Linda-Sue, four children, and nine grandchildren.

Bob Green

P/R/C Bob Green, N

In 1968 Bob purchased a 32-foot cruiser and joined Northern New Jersey Power Squadron to learn about boating. He soon became public relations officer, attracting large boating classes with his aggressive publicity efforts. Bob served as district PR officer before chairing the Public Relations Committee.

He created national interest for boating courses with public service announcements involving renowned showman Joey Bishop, actor John Wayne, and sports celebrity Joe Namath. Bob got New York’s WNBC-TV to run 13 half-hour segments presenting a mini-boating course.

Bob then served as commander of his squadron and district. In 1985 he chaired the Safety Committee. He persuaded the Hearst Corporation to invest $300,000 for an 86-minute USPS Video Boating Course with closed captioning for the hearing impaired, which he arranged through Gallaudet University.

Bob later chaired three United States Power Squadrons anniversary committees. He convinced all 52 state and territorial governors to sign the USPS 90th anniversary proclamation. For the USPS 100th anniversary, he helped obtain a letter from President Barack Obama.

Bob secured several grants, including a $206,000 small boat safety grant and a $200,000 Aquatic Resources Grant. Both involved sharing video productions.

As Marketing/Public Relations Committee chair and a member of the Operating Committee in 2007, Bob helped design an online version of PRO-LOG, the public relations guide he created and edited for 40 years.

Through the William and Bertha Green Foundation, Bob donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to squadrons and districts as well as to the national organization over the years. He provided personal funding for marketing professionals and professors to inform the organization. Through an art project he co-chaired, USPS headquarters obtained a second original painting by renowned maritime artist Don Demers.

During Bob’s 48-year USPS membership, he often did what others considered impossible. His energy, enthusiasm and idealism made him seem larger than life.

Bob Green and friends

Artist Donald Demers, then-C/C Arthur H. Farr, SN, and P/R/C Robert A. Green, N, unveil the USPS 85th Anniversary Painting at the Boston Yacht Club in 1999.

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P/D/C Charles W. Hamm, JN

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Dr. Charles W. Hamm, 79, of Carmel, Indiana, passed away Saturday, 11 April 2015.

Charles W. Hamm

Charles W. Hamm

Charlie was born 8 Sept. 1935 in Pomeroy, Ohio, to the late Walter and Lena Hamm. He was a graduate of the National Autonomous University of Mexico.  He served his internship and residency at Riley Hospital for Children. Charlie was a pediatrician in Indianapolis for 23 years, retiring in 1999.

Following retirement, he served as a consultant for Indiana School for the Blind, Indiana School for the Deaf and Marion County Juvenile Center.  Charlie was a member of the Concentric Research Team at the time of his death. He was also a member and officer in the United States Power Squadron and Hoosier Sail & Power Squadron for boating safety.

Charlie is survived by his wife, Nedra; daughters, Stefanie (husband Greg) Hoffman and Rebecca (husband Rick) Harden; step-children, David (wife Linda) Vecera, Tina Vecera and Grant (wife Laura) Vecera; grandchildren, Ann Bean, Maya Hoffman, Maggie Hoffman, Maria Vecera, Chris Harden and Audrey Harden Mearhoff; sister Betty (husband Ray) Johnson of Deland, Florida; and brother Michael Hamm of Pomeroy, Ohio.

Memorial contributions may be made to Unity Church of Indianapolis 907 N. Delaware St., Indianapolis, IN 46202. The family wishes to thank the doctors and staff at St. Vincent Hospice for their excellent care and compassion.

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Robert Edward Gibbs

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Robert Edward Gibbs, 81, of Hingham, Massachusetts, passed away peacefully on Monday, 9 March 2015, surrounded by his family after fighting pneumonia.

Robert Edward Gibbs

Robert Edward Gibbs

He was born 23 March 1933 in Stoughton, Massachusetts, son of Harland Gibbs and Jennie Wallin. He is survived by his wife, Barbara; his son, Marc R. Gibbs and wife Megan L. Motherway of Washington, D.C.; his two daughters, Patricia Candee Gibbs and wife Sara E. Northrup of Northampton, Massachusetts, and Tolly G. Zonenberg and husband Edward Zonenberg of Simsbury, Connecticut; and his three grandsons, Nicholas Zonenberg, Andrew Zonenberg and William Gibbs Northrup.

Bob was an avid swimmer and lifeguard, and taught swimming and trained instructors at YMCA in his youth. He was a veteran of the Korean War, graduate of the University of Massachusetts in Amherst where he excelled in varsity swimming. He served as commodore of the Hingham Yacht Club  and continued to serve on its many committees to ensure the safety and integrity of the piers and structures.

Bob was an active member in his community, including the Rotary Club, Veterans Council, United States Power Squadron and the Lincoln Sailing Club, giving access to sailing and boating skills to children and teenagers who could not have otherwise afforded it. He believed that higher education should be affordable to everyone and served on several local scholarship committees.

Bob loved nothing more than racing his sailboats with his loyal crew of family in the local regattas and spending time laughing with his family and teaching his children how to ski, use tools and sail. He kept active in the recent years by learning ocean navigation and walking and bowling with “the boys.” He will be remembered as a loving and devoted father who was honest, kind and generous.

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Lt Herbert L. Shulman, AP

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Herbert L. Shulman passed away 21 Dec. 2014. He was sailing for many months. He was very active with the Nobscot Sail & Power Squadron, District 12 and national for many years. He is survived by his wife, Sylvia, and two children. Services were held on 23 Dec. 2014.

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P/C Robert W. Feeney, AP

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Robert W. Feeney, 88, of Wayne, New Jersey and formerly of Hawthorne, New Jersey, passed away on 21 Jan. 2015.

P/C Robert W. Feeney, AP

P/C Robert W. Feeney, AP

Beloved husband of Gloria P. Feeney and predeceased by Helen G. Feeney, he is survived by his sons Robert D. Feeney and wife Mary of Scituate, Massachusetts; and David B. Feeney and wife Lynne of Ho Ho Kus, New Jersey; five grandchildren; and one great-grandson.

Bob was a partner in the family funeral business, John J. Feeney and Sons Funeral Home in Ridgewood and Paterson, New Jersey. He was born and raised in Paterson and graduated from Paterson State Teachers College and McAllister School of Embalming.

A U.S. Naval Air Force veteran of World War II, he was an aviation ordnanceman and top turret gunner aboard Martin PBM Mariner patrol bombers in the Pacific Theater.

Bob was a member and past president of the Hawthorne Rotary Club and a past president and charter member of the Hawthorne Blood Association. Bob was a charter member of the St. Anthony Council #5920 Knights of Columbus and of the B.P.O.E Wayne Elks, past president of Paterson Junior Chamber of Commerce and a member of Forward Paterson Movement.

Bob was a 35-year member of the Catholic Bowling League, bowling for St. Therese’s; a member of the Ancient Order of Hibernians; a member of Bernard Armitage Post #360 American Legion, VFW Post #1593 of Hawthorne; and a member of High Mountain Golf Club in Franklin Lakes. He was a member of Passaic County Grand Jurors Association, where he served as deputy foreman. A very active young man, Bob was a Charter Member of the World Champion Hawthorne Caballeros Drum & Bugle Corps., and played semi-professional football for the Hawthorne Cardinals in the New Jersey Professional Football League in the late 1940s.

Bob and his family enjoyed boating at their vacation home in Chatham, Massachusetts, where he taught his sons and neighborhood children the basics of safe boating, boat handling and sailing.  He owned and maintained a beautiful Lyman Islander 21-foot Runabout as well as a variety of sailboats in Chatham.

Bob joined the United States Power Squadrons in 1961, ultimately becoming commander of the Saddle River Power Squadron in North Jersey.  He earned 29 merit marks and the grade of AP.  In 1978, he achieved Educational Proficiency.  He served as chaplain at Saddle River and chair of the Public Relations Committee for many years.

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P/C/C Raymond A. Finley Jr., SN

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On 22 Jan. 2015, Past Chief Commander Raymond A. Finley Jr., SN, 93, was laid to rest in Chatham, New Jersey.

P/C/C Raymond A. Finley Jr., SN

P/C/C Raymond A. Finley Jr., SN

Ray is survived by Blanche, his wife of 69 years; sons, Raymond A. Finley III and James E. Finley; daughters, Margaret F. Paton and Patricia J. Finley; nine grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.

Ray became a Sea Scout in 1936 and earned Sea Scouting’s highest honor, the Quartermaster Award, in 1939. He met his future wife, Blanche Kopper, at a Sea Scout/Girl Mariners sailing camp.

Ray graduated with a mechanical engineering degree from Rutgers University, and as a U.S. Navy lieutenant during World War II, Ray served in the Pacific aboard the destroyer USS Monssen.

After the war, he married Blanche and enjoyed a long career at Linde Griffith Construction Co. of Newark, New Jersey.

An avid sailor and long-time New York Yacht Club member, Ray cruised with his family aboard their sloop, Shamrock. In 1962 his passion for boating safety led him to join Lackawanna Sail & Power Squadron/4, where he taught various courses, including Sail. He became squadron commander in 1971 and district commander in 1976.

As tall ships coordinator for the U.S. Bicentennial celebration Operation Sail 1976, Ray planned and plotted the safe passage of all 21 tall ships under bridges down the East River and into the Hudson on a single tide. He received a New Jersey safe boating award for his efforts during OpSail.

After serving on the national Bridge, Ray became Chief Commander from 1982-83. On 11 Sept. 1982, he called a special meeting of the Governing Board to vote on two amendments to the USPS constitution and bylaws.

The first deleted all references to gender and removed the word “male,” allowing women to become fully participating USPS members. The second amendment created a family membership plan for spouses and children 12–25.

In 2004 Ray became the first adult recipient of the eponymous Finley Sea Scout Service Award. During his 54-year membership in USPS, the emeritus member served the organization tirelessly and earned 52 merit marks.

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P/Lt Ralph Morse, JN

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P/Lt Ralph Morse, JN

P/Lt Ralph Morse, JN; photo courtesy of South Florida Sun Sentinel. Used with permission.

On 7 Dec. 2014 award-winning photographer and 30-year USPS member Ralph Morse passed away at 97. During his long career with Life and Time magazines, Ralph’s creative images captured history’s most memorable moments and people. A war correspondent in World War II, he later photographed the Mercury 7 astronauts and became known as the “eighth astronaut.”

Ralph joined Lackawanna Sail & Power Squadron/4 in 1968. He moved to Florida after retirement and became active in Palm Beach Sail & Power Squadron/8, where he volunteered as photographer, public relations officer and vessel safety examiner. He earned nine merit marks. Ralph enjoyed being on the water aboard Lifetime.

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P/Stf/C Roy E. Maas, SN

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Roy Earl Maas passed away on 7 January 2015 at 77. He is survived by his wife Myril.

Roy Maas

P/Stf/C Roy Maas, SN

Roy held a U.S. Coast Guard 50 Ton Captains License. He came to San Luis Rey Sail & Power Squadron in 2011 after moving to Temecula, California. He had been a member of San Francisco Sail & Power Squadron, where he taught the Junior Navigation and Navigation courses. He also served on the District 25 Bridge.

Roy was very proud to be a USPS member, and he was “in his glory” every time he attended an event. SLRSPS members last saw him at the squadron Christmas party in 2013.

Before moving to the San Francisco area, Roy began his squadron career in the Northern New Jersey Power Squadron. In 1971, he participated in the squadron’s television series for WNBC-TV New York, “Underway with the Power Squadron.” The series filmed 13 half-hour shows, and Roy was one of two instructors selected from 13 squadrons to teach the Sail presentation.

In 1998 Roy was nominated for election to the USPS National Governing Board and remained a member through 2001. Roy held the position of Assistant Chair, Education Development and Review in 2000. He received his 50-year USPS membership plaque in 2009.

Each month Roy looked forward to receiving The Ensign and The Mariner’s Needle, and read both magazines from cover to cover. He and Myril enjoyed an occasional sail aboard L’Esprit with Cheryl and Adriaan Veldhuisen.

Roy’s library of sailing and nautical books, along with his teaching materials, will form the basis of San Luis Rey’s squadron library.

He will be greatly missed by all who knew him.

Roy Maas and wife

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P/C Billie Bryant-Becker, P

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P/C Billie Bryant-Becker

P/C Billie Bryant-Becker

P/C Billie Bryant-Becker, P, of Orange, Texas, left this world to be in the loving arms of the Lord on 24 Dec. 2014 after a brief illness at the age of 83. Born in Shreveport, Louisiana, on 12 March 1931, Billie was a loving mother of four, grandmother of five, homemaker and entrepreneur. With 21 merit marks designating, she was also a member of the Sabine Sail & Power Squadron/21 and past commander of the Orange Power Squadron/21, an active member of the Orange chapter of the Red Hat Ladies and ardent supporter of the arts in Orange for many years.

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In memory

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P/C Geneva N. Wilson, SN

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On June 28, 2014, we sadly had to accept the passing of one of our organization’s most outstanding women, P/C Geneva Wilson, SN, of Gautier, Mississippi. This rare individual has been a shining example of what can be accomplished in this country with a solid work ethic and perseverance.

P/C Geneva Wilson, SN

P/C Geneva Wilson, SN

She was born Geneva Legate on 28 Feb. 1931 in Arkadelphia, Arkansas, during the darkest days of the Great Depression, the daughter of an Oklahoma cotton farmer, with eight brothers and sisters. Always a bright and conscientious student, she overcame the hard times and was able to attend prestigious Baylor University for two years then finished her undergraduate degree at the University of Oklahoma.

Geneva’s is survived by her husband, Robert Wilson, a retired Army officer who also speaks fluent Chinese. Robert served as an interpreter during the extended peace talks after the Korean War. The couple spent several years in Washington, D.C., while Robert worked for the Defense Intelligence Agency. Always driven to learning more about her world, Geneva studied at the University of Maryland while living in D.C. She also studied at the University of Frankfort in Germany for two years while her husband was stationed there. Adept at languages, Geneva became fluent in German, Spanish and Mandarin Chinese.

When Robert retired from the Army in 1964, they returned to Oklahoma where Geneva started a 20-year career with the US Postal Service of Oklahoma City, rising to manager of carriers and ultimately postmaster.  She retired as US Postmaster, attaining the US Post Office High Expectations Achiever Award.

Geneva also was an accomplished airplane pilot with an instrument rating flying many types of single engine airplanes. Somehow Geneva and Robert found time to raise five children plus two of their 15 grandchildren.

In 1992, the Wilson’s, both fully retired, moved to Gautier, Mississippi, and joined the Singing River Power Squadron in 1994. Geneva became an active boater, and within a few years she was selected for command of the squadron. Her leadership and dedication were superb, but her participation in the USPS Education program has become legendary. Since joining the squadron, except for a relatively short period when Geneva was hospitalized from a serious stroke, none of her squadron mates can ever remember a single boating class or vessel safety check event that Geneva was not actively present as a student, instructor, monitor or examiner. She entered the Junior Navigation Course with seven other squadron mates but was the only student to complete the course. She went on to be the only person from her squadron to achieve a full certificate in the 21st century. She truly was, and will always be remembered, as one of the great treasures of the United States Power Squadrons.

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