I have lived in Bremerton WA for the past 20 years. The last couple of years I have dedicated my off time preserving and refurbishing Historical Markers, memorials and their surrounding buildings and grounds.
To date, we have preserved Memorial plaques on the Bremerton Boardwalk in honor of the PSNS 100th Birthday, The Guns and anchor from the USS Bremerton, a flag raising and Plaques to honor the first telephone exchange in Bremeton, that was originally installed in 1982 in honor of the building from 1910.
Our next project was to honor the USS Franklin. Your Memorial Plaques are located on the side of the utility building at the entrance to our Boardwalk. It was a drab white building, without any reference to the Memorial on the side of it. I researched your plaques and found out that members from your ship had placed the plaques in the city, before the Boardwalk was even built. City officials said that they were planning on moving them to a different location. I approached the city that I had access to volunteers and equipment and would like to change the color of the building to Haze Grey and Deck grey in honor of your ship and to make it appear that it is a aircraft carrier superstructure. After 4 meetings with various Departments in the city approval was granted and 65 volunteers from the USS Ronald Reagan and NAVHOSP Bremerton joined me as we painted the building to go with your ships plaques. All paint was donated by the local Lowe’s Hardware.
We have just about completed the painting over the last 2 weekends and fell it is now a more fitting memorial to your ship. We will be painting the Hull Number of your ship on the side of it in the near future to complete the makeover.
If you come to Bremerton, a proud Navy city, please stop by your Memorial plaques that are now in a place of Honor as an Entrance to our Boardwalk. I have attached a few photos to be attached to this story.
Marion T. (Mick) Hersey
MSCS(AW) US Navy RET
Historical Marker Preservationist