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Lessons I've learned !

Memories of Michael S. Deitrick

    Although my time on the Bergall was marked by many interesting experiences, the most remarkable element throughout all of them was the people I shared them with.  Working in the submarine service gets you accustomed to working with the finest, something we may take for granted until such time as we go out into civilian life.

   With the passage of time, we tend to gloss over our negative experiences and romanticize the positive.  This is the same mental phenomenon that causes you to invite a long-lost cousin to stay for a week, only to realize, as soon as he arrives, why you were glad he was long lost.  That notwithstanding, I believe the only truly negative experiences in life are those from which we failed to learn a lesson.  What I will try to do here now is relate just a few of the many important lessons my shipmates taught me in my four years aboard Bergall.

John “Sports Billy” Dower: You may be casting pearls before swine, but at least you’re casting pearls.

Gene Diotalevi: Absolutely nobody’s sister is sacred.

LT Fourney: Accountability leads to second chances.

CDR Gibbs: Second chances lead to success.

Senior Chief Hanlon: If you can get two entire watch sections into the Horse & Cow at the same time, the XO just might look the other way.

Eddie Hertkorn: No matter how bad it gets, it’s never so bad that you can’t sing a goofy song about it.

ENS Hughes: TDUing 29 cases of bread is but a small price to pay for maintaining the security of the free world.

Rich Mahler: Lighthouses can turn up in the damnedest places.

LCDR Males: Nice guys don’t always finish last.

Ed “Jr.” McCarthy: When liberally applied, hi-temp silver paint turns your hair gray for 8-10 days.

MMC Quick: What goes around…

Ivan Salkin: There’s more than one way to retrieve a mail buoy.

Chief Jeff Sinclair: There’s always one more thing before you can go.

Rick Umpierre: It is not only possible, but fashionable, to string a bead chain in through your nose and out through your mouth.

Don Wenzel: U.S.S. Seawolf ballcaps are for display purposes only.

Ron Wittmann: When in Pisa, remember that those wine bottles on the sidewalk tables are not complimentary.


Michael Deitrick