Circumstances of the past six months have made it easy to neglect my routine updates regarding the progress that has been made on the coldwarboats.org website.

Work on the site has continued, with most of the effort directed toward completing the sites for 218 smoke boats and installing their basic menus. Currently, all the Gato class are done, as well as all the newer diesel classes: Albacore, Mackerel, Sailfish, Grayback, Darter, Barbel, and Dolphin. That leaves Balao, Tench, Barracuda, and Tang classes, which are about half the diesels left.

But at least all the nukes are done, both attack and missile, which should cover the bulk of all of you, and that is definitely good news.

The only site that has already fully absorbed it's standalone version, is the USS William H. Bates (SSN 680), it being my qual boat and all, and, as the builder of the original Bates site, made it easy to port into Cold War Boats.

Of course, the fun never stops. Once the fleet boats are done, I'll move on to the deep submergence unit, and the support groups like rescue vessels, tenders, schools, shipyards, and sub bases.

The best news is that we have moved into the beta phase as we complete block one projects, and opened the site for registration and access. Not everything is complete yet, but we can get you registered, and let you explore without hurting yourselves, or the site!

Messaging and email systems are working so you can communicate with other registered users, the Familygram system has been tested and released for group communication, and we are listing all command reunions, and enabling RSVPs, registration, attendance tracking, and even payments. If all else fails, the help request system is working and we can process your requests for help as we go.

So, you're invited to visit www.coldwarboats.org, and:

  • Register, making sure you list all commands your served on,
  • Visit your boats' websites, and leave a comment on the Pre-Comm Comments article halfway down each Quarterdeck page (This helps us direct our energy to the boats that have the most attention),
  • If you find something not working, generate a Help Request under the Watch, Quarter, and Station Bill menu in the right hand column of every page,
  • Visit the USS William H. Bates (SSN 680) site under Sturgeon Class Stretch Hulls, and see what your boat's website can become,
  • Start getting your photos and sea stories together, so we can start fleshing out the other boat sites,
  • Leave a comment on the site or here and let others know what you think.

Cold War Boats is for you and those important to you. Without you, it has no reason to exist. Register, and help capture the history of Cold War Boats!

Nothing like going to your favorite submarine website and finding, well, nothing! 

"I looked, and there it was, gone!"

I feel your pain, and even more so.

If you happened to visit the Cold War Boats site since yesterday afternoon, you found that the site wouldn't even load, which is a big deal for you, and a major headache for me. I was busy adding more smoke boat menus to the site when the menus started going wonky and nothing I could do made it better. I restricted access to the site, and worked unsuccessfully to get it turned around. Finally, the whole menu system collapsed into gibberish, roughly 3500 individual menu items, which may not sound like a lot to you, but it kept me busy for much of the last 24 hours!

The good news is that the site is back on-line, and ready for your access and perusal. Persistance paid off, and the reward is access to 396 boats, thousands of photos, sea stories, and boat records. 

Another lesson learned on the boat pays off.

"Never give up, never surrender!" Even if you're just sorting out software!


Wekiva Island Cabana

For those of you haven’t heard, the USS WILLIAM H. BATES (SSN 680) reunion, the AMOEBA RACES 21, is happening shortly at the USSVI convention in Orlando Florida.

Here’s what you need to know:

WHERE: The Rosen Shingle Creek Resort, 9939 Universal Blvd, Orlando, FL 32819.

WHEN: From Monday, 30 August 2021 at 10:00 until Wednesday, 01 September 2021 at 11:00. Some will be staying for the duration of the USSVI Convention which runs through Friday

WHAT: The reunion kicks off with an all-day outing and sea-story swap at Wekiva Island, just north of Orlando, in Longwood, FL, with seats, shade, beverages, and a bar-b-que. There will not be a hospitality suite at the Resort, as we will be using the common USSVI spaces during the convention.

Another step forward in the evolution of the Cold War Boats website!

Reunions are one of the many ways that shipmates from years ago can reconnect, and no one can deny the pleasure of sitting around the campfire (or air-conditioned hospitality suite) and swapping stories with shipmates from back in the day.  So it is and always will be, that helping make reunions happen directly supports the Cold War Boats core mission triad:

  • Assisting shipmates from years ago in reconnecting, simply, easily, and without compromising their privacy,
  • Preserving the unclassified history of Cold War submarine crews and their boats in the form of photographs, stories, artifacts, and audio or video recordings, and
  • Honoring the sailors and families who sacrificed so much to help bring an end to the Cold War.

Thanks for taking the time to check out the new Cold War Boats Association website. You’ve seen the Welcome Aboard message so you have an idea of what this is all about. You’ve seen the many “On The Ways” articles, so you know that this is as work in progress and we have a long, long, way to go. If you’ve had a chance to look at your boat’s pages, you’ve discovered that the only active site as of this date is the USS WILLIAM H. BATES (SSN 680).

We clearly have work to do, but I want to share a little about how we got here to put this all in context.

In 2008 I was contacted by a former SSN 680 shipmate, Bill Byers, who proposed the idea that us Bates sailors have an informal reunion, which quickly morphed into the formal reunion REGROUPEX 09. In order to support registration and help locate our sailing buddies, I volunteered to set up a website at www.ssn-680.org, and help connect everyone that might want to attend.


U.S. Naval Institute News