As the President of the Downtown Seattle Rotary (commonly known as #4), James McCurdy ’79 was invited on a US Navy overnight on the aircraft carrier John Stennis.
Before James shared his insider experience with our our luncheon crowd, he was introduced by his “big brother” Peter Philipps ’76. Peter gave a glowing review of James and his status as a fourth generation Washingtonian. Peter began with James’ great grandfather becoming the janitor of the Port Townsend bank at age 14, and then took us through the impressive McCurdy family’s business history
Wearing his USS John C. Stennis cap, McCurdy shared the experience of boarding the aircraft carrier stationed a 100 miles off-shore. The arrival on the deck was via the transit plane landing on the deck and being snagged by the hook. Of course the presentation ended with James’ accounting of the explosive take off from the carrier deck as they returned the visitors to the base at San Diego.
The first day was spent deck level and above, and the second day the visitors toured the below decks quarters. The visit included dining on the carrier and sleeping in quarters directly under the flight deck.
McCurdy’s commentary on the structure, the layout, the crew culture, and the intricacies of 10,000 person community afloat was quite interesting. His excellently descriptive reporting generated a number of questions from the audience.