Our Next Reunion: October 5 – 7, 2023
Grab the family! Call your shipmates! Plan to gather again in the fall of 2023. It’s only the best time to be in Charleston, afterall. The flowers are blooming, the humidity is low, and the temps are just right for exploring our favorite aircraft carrier.
Be on the look out for more information in the coming months.
Attendees wearing their reunion name tag/badge will get 20% off merchandise in the Patriots Point Gift Shop (landside by the parking lot) during the reunion. There will be lots of fun items to bring home to friends and family!
On Veterans’ Day, crewmember Joe Zaccaro (OE Division, 1964-1966) visited with his daughter, Laura’s, second grade students at a New Jersey elementary school to speak about his service on the ‘Fighting Lady.’ The students had lots of questions for him. “Besides the size of the ship and how many people on board and were any of them women,” Zaccoro said, “[they] wanted to know if I had my own bedroom and the different countries I visited.”
Zaccaro also handed out souvenirs from the Yorktown Association to the excited and inquisitive students. “The goodies went over famously.” He said, “My daughter received great reactions from the class the next day. [They] hoped I would come back again.”
With the help of crewmembers like Joe Zaccaro, the Yorktown Association carries on its mission to ‘Remember. Connect. Inspire. Educate.’ “I think [visits from veterans] should be done more often,” Zaccaro said, “as it is a taste of history for them not only in books.”
We Honor Him
Above is a framed letter sent to the Syfrett family on the occasion of Rev, Harold’s Memorial Service. Below is a copy of the letter. You can also see his obituary in our In Memoriam section of the website.
Dear Reverend Harold Syfrett’s family,
Rev. Harold in the Rev. Harold Syfrett Chapel aboard the USS Yorktown
As our Association Chaplain for more than four decades Rev. Harold touched so many of our hearts. From his days as a young Yorktown sailor, Rev. Harold’s calling was to become a dedicated servant of the Lord. He joyfully gave his life to leading souls to God through the power of prayer. Rev. Harold did this for us thousands of times aboard the Fighting Lady. He would step to the podium, arrange his notes and – “He Prayed For Us.”
To the Syfrett family, God bless you and thank you for sharing this kind, gentle and beautiful man with us,
Chairman and CEO/USS Yorktown CV10 Association, Inc.
USS Yorktown Association News Bulletin about the Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act signed into law June 25, 2019
Since the signing into law of the Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act (referred further here as the “Blue Water Law”) on June 25, 2019, your Yorktown Association leadership has been busy trying to determine as best we can what this law may mean to those of you who are USS Yorktown CVS-10 Vietnam War Veterans, or descendants of deceased USS Yorktown CVS-10 Vietnam War Veterans.
In simple terms, the Veterans Administration (VA) asks three primary questions when determining eligibility for benefit claims relating to this Blue Water Law.
Unfortunately, although the questions are fairly straight forward and simple, the answers you sometimes need to provide the VA can be quite complex and difficult.
These are three primary questions the Veterans Administration (VA) will ask a USS Yorktown Vietnam era veteran relating to the Blue Water Law:
( 1)Are you a Vietnam War Veteran, as defined by the VA? This question is typically answered by submitting a DD214 along with your application to the VA. If you don’t have a DD214, you will have to seek assistance and guidance from the VA or other related government agencies.
(2)Do you have any of the ailments that are spelled out by the Act? This question also requires significant direct interaction and involvement between you and the VA, which can be quite complex and involved.
Concerning questions (1) and (2) above, the Yorktown Association can not help you with either.
- Did the ship which you served on during the Vietnam War operate within the territorial waters of Vietnam as defined by the Act. This is a question that the Association leadership has been researching since the Blue Water Navy Act became law.
According to information we have to date is that the Yorktown did operate within the 12 nautical mile boundaries of the territorial waters of Vietnam as defined by the Act within the time frame as specified by the Act.
Our current findings are that there are two Deck Log reports documenting that the Yorktown operated in the above mentioned Vietnam territorial waters. The official source for these Deck Log reports is the National Archives. Ref. (2) below.
At this time, to the best of our knowledge the National Archives has complete USS Yorktown CVS 10 Deck Log information for the years 1966 and 1968, but so far has not released any information relating to the Deck Logs covering operations off of Vietnam for Yorktown’s deployment in 1965.
There are a variety of sources for ship position reports relating to the the Blue Water Navy Law available on the internet. For our purposes, we will only use the Deck Logs referenced above as the sole source of our information.
From the text of the Blue Water Vietnam Veterans Act of 2019, Sec. 116A;
Determination of offshore
Notwithstanding any other provision of law, for purposes of this section, the Secretary shall treat a location as being offshore of Vietnam if the location is not more than 12 nautical miles seaward of a line commencing on the southwestern demarcation line of the waters of Vietnam and Cambodia and intersecting the following points:
|Points Geographic Names||Latitude |
|At Hon Nhan Island, Tho Chu Archipelago Kien Giang Province||9°15.0′||103°27.0′|
|At Hon Da Island southeast of Hon Khoai Island Minh Hai Province||8°22.8′||104°52.4′|
|At Tai Lon Islet, Con Dao Islet in Con Dao-Vung Toa Special Sector||8°37.8′||106°37.5′|
|At Bong Lai Islet, Con Dao Islet||8°38.9′||106°40.3′|
|At Bay Canh Islet, Con Dao Islet||8°39.7′||106°42.1′|
|At Hon Hai Islet (Phu Qui group of islands) Thuan Hai Province||9°58.0′||109°5.0′|
|At Hon Doi Islet, Thuan Hai Province||12°39.0′||109°28.0′|
|At Dai Lanh point, Phu Khanh Province||12°53.8′||109°27.2′|
|At Ong Can Islet, Phu Khanh Province||13°54.0′||109°21.0′|
|At Ly Son Islet, Nghia Binh Province||15°23.1′||109° 9.0′|
|At Con Co Island, Binh Tri Thien Province||17°10.0′||107°20.6|
As you can see from the above Deck Logs, the USS Yorktown CVS 10 was inside of Vietnam territorial waters (as described by this law) on February 26, 1966 (position 16° 52’N 107° 45’E), and May 25, 1968 (position 16° 38’N 107° 51’E).
USS Yorktown Association, Inc.
Ref: (1) Blue Water Vietnam Veterans Act of 019
(2) National Archives website