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I was later called to the ships office to meet with the XO. He had two report chits in his hand. He reviewed the charges, chewed me out some and said: Henderson you have almost seven years with good conduct and you are due to reenlist. Are you going to make a career out of the Coast Guard? I said yes and he tore both reports up and said dismissed. The yeoman told me later on that the Captain and the XO had discussed it and had decided to let me off. I have been forever grateful and maintained an unblemished and wonderful career after that.

Note: I had been having stomach problems the entire trip with severe heart burn at times. When we got back to Baltimore I was put in the Public Health hospital for evaluation. Turned out I had a bad hiatus hernia and it was classified as a service connected injury. In those days they didn‘t have Nexium. My enlistment expired while in the hospital and I went ahead and took a regular honorable discharge. I never took the VA disability offered. Three years later after working river boats, running 63‘ AVR‘s for RCA on AUTEC and working on a top yacht, I tried to rejoin and was accepted rate for rate. They said had I taken the VA disability, I would not have been able to come back in. I continued to be one of the few snipes certified as a boat coxswain. I retired in 1984 in Charleston SC.

Smoker

I don‘t recall the XO actually fighting anyone one at our first smoker. There was a challenge and it was promoted with big hype and then he showed up in his long johns acting silly. He really faked everyone out and it was a great laugh. It was not what anyone expected of our XO. See cruise book picture.

First Reunion

We had an earlier CGC Southwind reunion in Grand Haven Michigan back in 1990 at the 200th birthday of the Coast Guard. It was announced in the retirement publications. We only had about ten members show up. ENCM McMains was at that one. He was in from Australia.

The reunion in Charleston was the First ―Official‖ Southwind Reunion.

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