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2022 Reunion Hosts Wanted !!!
Hosting a Reunion can be very rewarding.  Does your part of the Country have
places and/or events you feel your Shipmates would enjoy?  Our past Reunion Hosts can provide
you with advice on hosting one yourself & with another shipmate.
If you would like to host a Reunion contact:
Norris Long at: HDbassman46@yahoo.com

We can't put out our newsletter without YOUR help & we are running short of stories for the newsletter.
Everyone has had some interesting stuff happen to them, or at least seen some funny stuff during their time aboard Hector,
so how about sharing it with your shipmates?  Don't just assume your stories aren't worth reading about.
If you have anything that might be interesting to tell us about, please email our newsletter editor Keith Seckel at kseckel@tampabay.rr.com

New Ship's Storekeeper
Welcome aboard to Jim Gear 66-68 (SFP3) as the new Association Storekeeper
If you have a question or would like to place an order
you can contact him at: jpjkgear@aol.com

Celebrate the American Spirit with the Pacific Battleship Center 
and Battleship IOWA museum. 

The USS Hector Association board has approved this donation. Send your tax deductible donations to our project, to Gene Bartolaba and he will return a tax statement that can be written on your taxes. The USS Iowa will use our donation to help procure and restore a HUP 2 helicopter as was used during the Korean War. 

The USS Iowa will make a plaque that will be on display showing that The Hector Assoc. made a donation to get the helicopter on the Iowa. This plaque will be in a place where everyone will see it. Please make your checks payable to the USS Hector Association, attention Iowa project. The Pacific Battleship Center and all of the volunteers thank you for your donations to help us remember all veterans for the sacrifice they have made to secure our freedom.

Jim Ohr MM2 (69-73) is our "spearhead" to get a Hector Museum space aboard the USS Iowa and we believe our participation in the acquisition of funds in this project would be of great benefit in acquiring Hector museum space aboard the USS Iowa 

Your Tax-deductible donation may be sent to 
BOX 501 


Another worthy Hector Memorial for the Admiral Nimitz Museum
 located in Fredricksburg, Texas.
Started by Mike Field BM3 (80-83), 2016 Reunion Host

The USS Hector Association is now a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization. We can now accept monetary donations that are tax deductible.

Please consider a contribution that will be used to advance our ideas of getting Hector a relationship with a museum,
as well as purchases of Hector related memorabilia that may come up for sale and can be used for displays at reunions or in a museum.
Jim Ohr is currently working with the USS Iowa museum to see if we can support and have a space on the ship. More information will come at reunion time.

Send your contributions to our treasurer, Gene Bartolaba P.O. Box 501 Sitka, Alaska 99835.
You will receive documentation of your contribution that can be used, as a deduction, when you file your taxes with IRS.

Of course, personal donations of pictures, documents and items, will be accepted by the association historian.
We can provide a letter of acceptance should you be so inclined.

If you have any & are willing to share with your Shipmates, contact the Webmaster at: dvstahl@gmail.com

If you own or can loan the Association certain cruise books for scanning, or are able to scan them yourself, we need your help.
We need 1958, 75 and 78-79 cruise books.  If there are any prior to 1954, or if any others we've missed, we would like them, too.
The years of cruise books that we already have are:  54-55, 59-60, 61, 63, 68, 70-71, 72, 73-74, 77, 81, 84, and 85-86.
If you can help us get all USS Hector cruise books onto DVD, please contact:
Historian Charlie Atkins at charlieatkins22@gmail.com or Webmaster Dennis Stahl at dvstahl@gmail.com

Hector Sailor Hits The Airways
Our Secretary, Norris Long does a Bluegrass Radio Show on WVMR, Allegheny Mountain Radio
on Sundays from 12pm to 4pm Eastern Time.  Click on the "Listen Live" button on the left of the Main Page
for a live Audio Link.  You can also check Norris's Monthly Playlist & other Bluegrass links.
For Musical Requests, call toll free at: 1-800-297-2346


The USS Hector Association receives inquiries each year from former crewmates and/or their spouses for information pertaining to the association of mesothelioma cancer and service on the USS Hector AR-7.  The following is prepared to present only a small part of the vast information on the subject and is not intended to serve as a legal source.

Mesothelioma is a very rare form of lung cancer.  It is also found to be a cancer of the addomen/stomach and the heart.  It may be difficult to diagnose mesothelioma because many of the mesothelioma symptoms are similar to those of a number of other conditions, including lung cancer and other types of cancer.  Although there is no early detection test for mesothelioma, there are several tests which may be conducted in making the diagnosis of mesothelioma.  These include, but are not limited to, chest X-rays, a CT scan, or MRI scan.
As in many US Navy ships built during World War II, the USS Hector had a large amount of asbestos installed within its hull.  Ranging from insulation around pipes, valves, and ventilation ducts to other materials where its use was not so apparent.  The different materials and pieces either made completely of asbestos or containing asbestos fibers includes the following:  boiler room equipment, electrical insulation, gaskets, pumbling/pipe insulation, pumps, standard multipurpose cloth, and turbines to mention a few.  By the pure nature of the Hectorís assigned mission, many of her crew were exposed to these materials from projects sent from other ships for repair, etc.

By 1989, legislation was created to regulate the use of asbestos in most situations, though it is still permitted in some products.

As earlier explained, this information is not intended to serve as a legal or definitive source on the subject.  If you have been knowingly subjected to asbestos, or think you have, early annual medical screening should be conducted by your doctor.

The long latency period of this disease means individuals might not be aware of past exposure for as many as five decades later, when symptoms finally begin to appear.

For more information on the subject you may call the Mesothelioma Resource Online at 1-855-584-0411 or visit many of the sites on the web including:  www.mesothelioma-lung-cancer.org; www.AsbestosAction.org; www.mesothelioma-attorney-locators.com; or Mesothelioma and the Navy

BLUE WATER NAVY  is a very comprehensive website dedicated to providing information for those who may have been exposed to
Agent Orange, some of which, include former Hector Sailors. On their site, they have a U.S. Government Document
containing a list of Navy and Coast Guard Ships associated with service in Vietnam and exposure to Herbicide Agents.
Both the Hector and Ajax are named on this list, and may be helpful if you need to make a claim for benefits due to Agent Orange exposure.
You may go directly to the List of Ships on their website by clicking HERE.  Hector (and Ajax) may be found on page 11 of the document.

NOTE:  This is the same document that was previously available by contacting the Association.  You can now just go to the
BLUE WATER NAVY website to view or print the document directly from your web browser.  In the Hector's case,
this document seems to pertain to the 70-71 cruise, but Hector Sailors also received liberty in Vung Tau
and went ashore in Da Nang during the '72 cruise, and this info may also prove useful to those on this cruise.
If you have experiences along this line to share, which may help other shipmates,  please contactNorris Long at hdbassman46@yahoo.com

Have you sent us a number of your photos from your Navy Days and ended up frustrated because we just can't use every photo we are sent?
Do you have so many photos you don't know which to send?  Why not start up your own website?
There are companies offering space for free websites, and with free online website builders, anyone can make a website to be proud of.
If you start your own website or even if you have a Hector-related page on "Facebook",  etc., we'd be happy to post a link for it on our Related Sites page.
(Hector-related means more than just mentioning that you served aboard Hector, and Sea Stories are welcomed by our Newsletter editor).
This is YOUR chance to help bring former Hector Sailors together !!!    Questions?   Feel free to contactDennis Stahl at dvstahl@gmail.com

My Fellow Shipmates:  I'm making a personal request.  I received this really big boat from Uncle Sam on my 20th Birthday in August of 1969.
I'd really be pleased to see a nice photo of Hector at the Pier in Subic Bay, as I first saw her, in 1969.  If you've got one, would you share it with me?
I really wish I'd taken more than just a handful of photos around the ship after just coming aboard, but I did not.

I also never took any pictures around the city of Long Beach, and I don't believe any of my close shipmates did either.  Anyone out there
with photos from around the early 1970's of the Pike (the amusement park) & some of the downtown area?

If you've got any photos, please contact the webmaster: dvstahl@gmail.com

The Hector Herald Goes Digital
Ladies, Gentlemen and Shipmates of all ages:  The Hector Herald is going to follow the nationís other great newspapers
and offer you the option of having the Herald delivered directly to you email Inbox.  This is an optional service.  If you wish to continue
receiving your Herald by mail via the USPS, fear not, your Herald will be mailed as always, with no further action on your part.

 If you chose to receive it by email, you will have to notify the association secretary Norris Long <nlong_wvmr@yahoo.com>
by email, with your correct email address and your desire to receive the Herald as a pdf file.
This file can be opened with the Adobe Acrobat Reader which is available free online.

Receiving your Herald by email will have several advantages for the reader:  You will save a tree and have less in your recycle bin.
 The color pictures will be in color, alas the b&w pictures will not be in color but they will be clearer.  The association will save some money
on printing and postage.  The fellow who folds, addresses and stamps them will have less to do, thatís me.

 Click on the following link to email Norris Long,  HDbassman46@yahoo.com

We now have photos of the USS Hector under the Pakistan Navy, after her decommsssioning.
Use the link on the Photo Albums page or click here, for your convenience Ex-USS Hector

Many of our new contacts forget to supply us with their mailing address.  If you give us your mailing address, you will receive a complimentary (free) copy of our newsletter.  The Association treats this information as confidential, and is used solely for Association business.  Only with permission, do we share email or mailing addresses with other shipmates when they request to make contact with other buddies.  Not all our shipmates have internet access, and snail mail may be the only other alternative.
Does anyone have one of the Tiger Cruise booklets or Welcome Aboard booklets from the 50's, 60's or 70's?   A set of deck diagrams of the Hector were often in these booklets.  We now have a set from the 80's - see the Photo Albums page for the link.  The diagrams would make a neat addition to the website.  If you have one of these, contact Dennis Stahl

We have a fellow (not a Hector sailor) who is involved in a project encompassing over 7,100 USN/USCG ships.  He's looking for digital photos or scans of Hector cruise book covers.  He presently has the following covers:  1954-55, 1958, 1959-60, 1960-61, 1966-67, 1968, 1970-71, 1972, 1973, 1977, 1978-79, 1981-82, 1984, and 1985-86 cruise books. If you can provide a scan or photo of any other Hector cruise book covers, please contact Dennis Stahl

VA Court Overturns Agent Orange Rule

The Court of Veterans Appeals ruled August 16 in the case of a Navy veteran who had appealed an earlier decision by the Board of Veterans' Appeals on his Agent Orange disability claim.  The veteran, Mr. Jonathan L. Haas, had claimed service connection for diabetes mellitus and other conditions due to exposure to dioxin (Agent Orange) while serving aboard a Navy vessel during the Vietnam War.  The Board denied his claim, since VA regulations limited potential service connection due to presumed exposure to herbicides only to veterans who actually set foot in Vietnam.  "Blue Water" sea service veterans have long maintained that the "on-shore only" rules were arbitrary and unfair.

The Court essentially swept away the VA's rule.  In reversing the Board's decision in Haas' case, the Court said the law was "not clear on its face concerning the meaning of the phrase 'service in the Republic of Vietnam'" [emphasis added].  It said the law doesn't "limit [application of the] presumption of service-connection for herbicide exposure to those who set foot on the soil of the Republic of Vietnam."

Specific diseases the VA presumes to be service-connected for qualifying Vietnam service include diabetes mellitus (Type II), Hodgkin's disease, prostate cancer, multiple myeloma, certain birth defects such as spina bifida in the children of Vietnam veterans, and chronic and lymphocytic leukemia.  Click here for a complete listing and related information.

The Court did not actually award a disability to Haas, but sent his case back to the Board for that determination.  If the Board rules in his favor, the Court directed that his other Agent Orange-related medical conditions also must be compensated.

What does the ruling mean for others?  The implication of the court ruling is that all who received a Vietnam Service Medal and who contract one of the listed diseases could expect the VA to rule that disease as service-connected.

However, the VA can appeal the Court's decision.  MOAA recommends that members and other veterans like Mr. Haas who served offshore but did not set foot in Vietnam, and who suffer from diseases or conditions that they believe to be caused by exposure to Agent Orange should consider filing a claim for disability.  Members who have had such claims denied may wish to re-file based on the Court's decision.  We strongly recommend that veterans seek the advice and assistance of an experienced veterans' service organization before proceeding.

For more Information, visit this link: http://www.washingtonpost.com

A Message from the Webmaster

There are many ports of call that Hector made during her 43 years, but if you folks don't send me some pictures, these ports can't be represented.  Does anyone have any Decommissioning Photos?

Photos of stuff going on aboard or nearby the ship is interesting, too.  If need be, you can mail them to me for scanning & I will return them to you.  Please don't send "buddy" pictures.  Over 16,000 served aboard Hector in her 43 years.  Photos with people in them are OK, but individuals will not be identified.  Please, on reunion photos - don't send several photos of the same group of folks.  Posting several photos of one group isn't fair to others.

When I took over the role of Webmaster in Jan 2003, I had almost no experience in creating or maintaining a website.  I guess Bob Lea, co-host of the 2002 reunion and creator of the fledgling website, figured I had the pride and enthusiasm to do right by it.  Those of you who have been with us since then will have noticed the many changes & hope you will feel they have been improvements.  I don't receive a nickel for doing what I've done (nor do any of the other volunteers who make everything happen).

Our dues are $15 for 2 years, which helps support everyhing that goes on, from newsletters, to website, to reunions.  How many of you belong to the VFW or American Legion and are paying $20-$25 each year to support them?  Don't worry.  There will be more wars and more members to support these organizations.  They even take non-veterans now.

It is believed that over 16,000 served aboard Hector during her 43 years in commission.  But there will never be any more new Hector crewmates.  In fact, our numbers get smaller as the years go by, as our shipmates pass on.  So, you see, we are all members of a very Special Organization, and one you should take pride in.  The USS Hector has reunions with at least twice the numbers of attendees of our sister ships, Ajax & Jason.  Isn't that proof we are the best & deserve your support?  Won't you help support your Organization?

Dennis Stahl 69-72 (HT3) DC Shop

Have Questions, Comments or Photos to add to the Website?
 Contact the Webmaster