DER-386 Ship's Plaque
Found by Irma M. Kytonen in October, 1972 at Bering Sea Beach - Nome, Alaska
Irma was curious about the plaque and wrote to
the Navy Department.
"I live in Kettle Falls, Washington. This is kind of unusual, but keep reading. I was in the Navy from 10 July, 1958 until 22 October, 1961. I was stationed on the USS Finch (DER-328) at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii until we changed our home port to Treasure Island, California in early 1960. I remember the USS Savage at Pearl Harbor although I wasn't involved with her.
I got out of the Navy in 1961 and went back in on 15 January, 1965. I retired 01 August, 1980 and lived in the Bremerton, Washington area until one and one half years ago. At that time my wife and I retired and returned here to my home town.
One day about a year ago, there was a very moving military poem that appeared in the local town paper. I contacted the man that I mistakenly thought had written the poem, but he had only paid to have it published. He is quite a few years older than I, but when I wrote to him and gave him my phone number, he called and wanted to meet with me. We got together for breakfast at the local Arby's and had an extremely wonderful discussion. He is a retired school teacher/professor/school superintendent. He and his wife (deceased last year) lived in Alaska for many years as he taught school and was principal, etc., etc. there for quite some time. The last time I saw him, he stopped here and bought the motor home I had for sale. Again, we had a neat meeting and in the conversation, he said 'since you are a retired sailor, do you know anything about a ship named the Savage?' I said I did and then he wanted to know if I would like to have something he and his wife found while walking on the beach in Alaska one day. I said of course I would, so this afternoon he dropped off a plaque that is about 8" across with USS Savage on the perimeter and the Indian head in the middle. All the paint is missing and there is a small amount of "stuff" on it.
As soon as I saw it after he left, I thought "boy, I'd sure like to find the way it was done originally and I could restore it". So I looked up USS Savage on the web and found your name at the top of the list. I then decided that maybe someone from the ship would enjoy it more than me. Maybe you have a club or something or you could do something with it at one of your reunions or something. His wife had written to the Navy Department and requested information. That letter goes along with the answer from the Navy also included (1972)."
Photograph of Irma and Everett "Ev" Kytonen.
[Mr. Roush served aboard the USS Finch (DER-328) at Pearl Harbor from October 1958 until early 1961, Treasure Cove, California until August 1961. The USS Brister (DER-327) at Pearl Harbor from August 1966 through July 1967. The USS Moore (DD-747), USS Pritchett (DD-561), DATC San Diego, USS Cahokia ATA186, Midway Island (YTB 776) from May 1971 to July of 1975. NavResCen in Salt Lake City, Utah and the USS Peoria LST1186. He would like to hear from anyone who served with him on those ships or stations. Please contact the Webmaster if you have any information to forward to Mr. Roush.]
[Message received from Everett R. Roush, USN (Ret.) on 28 July, 2004. I am deeply grateful to Mr. Roush and Mr. Kytonen for their wonderful contributions to this web site. The plaque itself is a 'once in a lifetime' find and I sincerely appreciate the time Mr. Roush took to track this site down. And we can't forget Irma - who stubbed her toe on this plaque in the sand in Alaska back in 1972. Thank you Irma.]
click on image to enlarge
click on image to enlarge
Reply from the Naval History Division of the Department of the Navy.