Underway – Reunion 2007


Sam Bowers



                USS LANSING 2007 GET TOGETHER (Reunion) consisted of a cruise aboard the Norwegian Dream out of the Port of Houston, Texas. We departed Houston on the evening of February 3rd and proceeded south into the Gulf of Mexico. The evening hours were quite calm, but in the later hours we encountered some pretty strong winds and rough seas. The Old Salts are now finding out their sea legs of long ago no longer exist.

                Our first port of call was to be Progresso, Mexico where we would spend the day and get underway in the evening for our next port, Cozumel, Mexico. However, due to the rough weather conditions we were unable to enter Progresso, because the port is quite wide open with a narrow, shallow channel; so we kept on a southerly course and arrived in Cozumel two days after leaving Houston. Some visited the Mayan Ruins while most enjoyed the cold $1.00 beers and the party atmosphere in the numerous bars. Also a few souvenirs were purchased.

                Evening came and we set sail for Belize City, Belize, where we dropped anchor and took the liberty launches (tenders) to shore. Belize was previously British Honduras. It is a fairly poor country with some pretty rough roads and narrow streets. The streets were built for mule and horse travel and not great for cars. Some of the crew went to the brewery and seemed to enjoy it. Others including Donna, Sam, Walt and Bonnie went on an airboat ride through the swamp lands. It was somewhat enjoyable, as we saw a great number of different birds and other wildlife. As always an air boat ride at high speeds is fun. As evening came it was time to get underway and steam back toward Houston, where we tied up on the morning of the 10th of February.

                While on board we had two evening meals where we all sat fairly close and was able to socialize and discuss a little bit of everything. One of our evening meals was a full dress type with dresses, and suits. Prior to going to dinner we had the ships photographer take a group picture of all thirty four of us. We also were afforded a cocktail party by our travel agent Sharon. All drinks were paid for and as much as you could put away was on the house. We all enjoyed Super Bowl Sunday as the better part of the group assembled in the theatre where the ship had set up a buffet of ribs, wings, sandwiches, veggies, and much more. We relaxed, drank beer, ate some more, and watched the game on a large movie screen. Many football helmets of beer were drank that day and on most other days as far as that goes.

                It seems that everyone thoroughly enjoyed themselves for the most part and most said they would enjoy going on another cruise. I hope that more of our shipmates will come on board, if and when we have another one. The favorite quote of the trip (except for Billy) seemed to be “Now this ain’t no shit”.


The following is a list of shipmates and friends who cruised:


Bowers, Sam & Donna

Cates, Charles & Judy

Dominques, Gordon & Stella

Glidewell, Billy & Treva

Gress, Larry & Frances

Mannes, Kurt & Renate

Morelan, Walt & Bonnie

Pinkham, Francis “Pink” (ex Navy friend of Sam & Donna)

Ray, Billie & Farley

Rother, Ed & Carol

Rother, Vince

Skillman, Richard & Rita

Strainer, John & Marilyn

TeSelle, Bruce & Evelyn

VanVechten, John & Carol

Ward, Bill & Vera (ex Navy relatives of Sam & Donna)

Wesson, Phillip & Maryann

Zavala, Juan & Shirley (ex Army relatives of Gordon & Stella)


  Judy Cates just reminded me that between Cozumel and Belize the ship lost one of it’s engines which put our arrival behind by 1 ˝ hours. All of us Snipes volunteered to go below and fix it for them but the Captain said he highly pays his engineers to do that, so once again we weren’t able to show off our skills.