Support the Forgotten: Merchant Marine Veterans
Organized by: Brad Yoho
71 years ago a magazine devoted to publicizing a World War II military base (Sheepshead Bay N.Y.) was distributed. One of the sailors featured on the cover is Dave Yoho, who remains the C.E.O of a major consulting company.
Dave, now 86, says he never saw the original magazine. His wife discovered the publication when someone posted it online. Nevertheless, he is amazed at how all this came to be. There were over 12,000 recruits on the base and there were 4 additional bases in the U.S. What are the odds of him making the cover?
Furthermore, of all the billions of items online, how did he stumble upon this remarkable artifact? In response, Dave cites a favored quote of Carl Jung: “Vocatus sive non vocatus deus aderit”; literately “God is present in all things whether called upon or not”.
The U.S. Maritime Training bases were originated in 1938 by President Roosevelt to fulfill a need he anticipated if the U.S. were to be drawn into World War II. Joseph Kennedy (Father of late President John Kennedy) was appointed Chairman. The program was established under the U.S. Coast Guard and supervised by the U.S. Navy. The goal was to recruit men to train on a military base to man the ships of the U.S. Merchant Marine. During the war, 250,000 recruits were trained in the U.S. Maritime Service and most were placed on merchant ships, thereby becoming part of the U.S. Merchant Marines. Records indicate that the Merchant Mariners suffered the highest casualty rate of any of the military services. Often called the “forgotten service”, the U.S. Maritime Training bases were disbanded in 1954.
Although they have an association representing them (The American Merchant Marine Veterans), it is rapidly shrinking. They have 60 chapters remaining with less than 2200 members still alive. Most veterans of World War II are in their late 80's to early 90's. Many can no longer attend meetings due to physical restrictions. Some are in assisted living or nursing homes. They need our help...
Please, give whatever you can to help out this forgotten branch of the military that gave up so much yet in the annals of history has received so little.
The American Merchant Marine Veterans are a non-profit organization, and your charitable contribution will go to help veterans of both World War II and the Korean War.