My Graphics Arts experience was a perfect platform that lead to learning about creating web sites and reviewing other sites. A good friend, and fellow webmaster, has said that I have "a calibrated eye" when it comes to placement of graphics, spacing, layout and design.
The USS SAVAGE (DE/DER-386) web site has been in the works for over nineteen (19) years and still continues to expand. I am constantly searching for new sources and new information. Since the dedication of the WWII Memorial, I have received many new photographs and new information.
Beginning in 2009, I found myself receiving requests from many Vietnam veterans needing proof of "boots on ground" in order to get service connected for their disabilities associated with Agent Orange. This has led to me spending more time at the National Archives pouring over Log Books from the ship. I am delighted to say that I have been of some help to several veterans.
Creating this site has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. Before my Daddy (Gerald O. Day) died in March of 2002, we spent hours and hours of quality time together. This time turned out to be the most precious gift I ever received from him. My Pop had never talked about his WWII experiences very much before this. He was and continues to be my hero.
I can remember being a small child and cuddling up with him to watch WWII movies, but he never revealed much of what he did in the Coast Guard or Navy.
In our talks, my Pop revealed to me that he would stand watch alone at the guard towers and patrol the beach looking for U-boats and Germans who would sneak onshore. He had never been so scared in his life. Before that time or after. He said that any little noise would make him want to jump out of his skin. He was 18 years old patrolling a darkened beach looking for Nazis who would kill him instantly to gain access to United States soil. He was a boy doing a man's job. It scares me to just think about doing something like that.
Regrettably, my father did not have any photographs of his time aboard the Savage or of any of his buddies. He told me that cameras were prohibited onboard ship, and would have been a violation of security protocol.
I am so grateful that I have been able to get my Pop's history documented, not only for the Internet, but for my family. We now have a great-grandaughter and great-grandson in the family. It is my hope that they will be able to know what a fine man their great-grandaddy Jerry was.
My Pop did get to see "his" site in its early stages. He was embarrassed in his own shy way, but he was also extremely proud of it. I don't think anyone had ever thanked him for serving his country. Along with our research, he also had the opportunity to correspond with some of his old shipmates. He really got a kick out of that.
Meet the Webmaster
I was born on 22 June, 1953 and grew up in Friendly, a sleepy little farming town in Maryland where, at age five (5) I walked behind a mule plowing my grandfather's fields. I would later graduate to picking strawberries for a penny a quart.
Friendly is located about thirty (30) minutes outside of downtown Washington, D. C., and is about twelve (12) miles due south of Andrews Air Force Base.
I began my career with the United States Government in June of 1971 as a Publications Information Specialist at the Census Bureau in Suitland, Maryland.
In November of 1973, I transferred to the Defense Mapping Agency/Hydrographic Center as an apprentice Negative Engraver constructing nautical charts for the United States Navy. After attaining the level of Journeyman, I worked for thirty (30) years in the field of manual engraving/graphic arts.
In 2003, I completed thirty (30) semester hours of college courses that helped me transfer into the field of Automated Cartography. In 2005, I retired from the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency in Bethesda, Maryland, after thirty-five years of government service.