Northwest Navigator: News and Information from Navy Region Northwest in Washington State's Puget Sound, including Bremerton, Kitsap County, Oak Harbor, and Everett

Stennis leaves history at local Navy museum

Photo by Ensign Chad Dulac
Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class (SW) Joseph Vincent organizes items donated by various departments from USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) for an exhibit at the Naval Memorial Museum of the Pacific in Bremerton.

In the midst of a rigorous at-sea training schedule, Sailors aboard USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) took some time out of their busy schedules to revamp the ship’s exhibit at the local Navy museum in downtown Bremerton, Oct. 18. 

The exhibit, located at the Naval Memorial Museum of the Pacific, is composed of items from several departments on the ship. The exhibit, initially designed to give the local community a chance to view some of equipment used aboard Stennis, involved several weeks of preparation and a little more then a week to complete the exhibit’s renovation prior to getting underway Nov. 2. 

“I’m happy to see the home ported ship has some exposure right on the main street of Bremerton,” said the President of the Board of Directors for Naval Memorial Museum of the Pacific, Lyle Nelson.  “It’s our main window display, and we’ve had positive feedback on it.”

The idea for a revamp of the display originally came from Stennis’ Commanding Officer, Capt. Brad Johanson, as he was viewing local artist’s paintings during Bremerton’s monthly art walk. After talking with the museum’s manager, Johanson decided to bring the old exhibit up to date while still keeping with the museum’s display of history. 

“I was impressed with the exhibit, but it was all time dated,” said Johanson.  “I wanted it to focus on what we do at sea. It also needed to have a good cross section of the things we do here on Stennis. I think the museum and the exhibit captures that quite well.”

The actual revamping of the exhibit fell on the shoulders of Stennis photo officer, Ensign Chad Dulac. He, along with volunteers from Stennis’ Media Division, spent several weeks collecting items that were volunteered and manufactured around the ship. Once all of the items were collected, they were neatly organized for the exhibit. 

“Contributions gathered from around the ship encompass a wide range of items, from ingots of steel from the ship’s keel and flight deck, to flight suits and helmets donated by Capt. Johanson,” said Dulac. “Our goal is to bring our pride in our ship to the community and show what we do aboard.”

From cleaning up a beach in Silverdale, Wash., to helping clean and haunt the USS Turner Joy (DD 951) museum, Stennis is using this exhibit as yet another way to increase community involvement. 

“We’re members of this community, and I am very proud that Stennis is home ported in Bremerton,” said Johanson. “Our relationship with the community is superb, and the museum captures much of the history of the shipyard, the Navy, and its impact on this city.”

Stennis is working with the museum as it is scheduled to move to its new location the summer of 2007. Once the move is complete, the new exhibit is planned to be even more informative and interactive. 

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