USS Thresher

Arlington National Cemetery

Memorial Project

 

© 2018 USS Thresher Arlington National Cemetery Memorial Foundation. All Rights Reserved

 

ANC Correspondence & Key Events

 

  • September 20, 2012
    • Joint letter dated 9/20/2012 is sent from the following US Senators to the Honorable John McHugh, Secretary of the Army asking for his support to build a monument to USS Thresher in Arlington National Cemetery (ANC):
  • October 9,. 2012
    • Received reply letter dated 10/9/2012 from the Honorable John McHugh, Secretary of the Army, to Senator Ayotte notifying us of the new approval procedure and identifying the required data submittal necessary for an ANC approval review.
  • October 30, 2012:
  • December 2012:
    •  Learn of new legislation designed to eliminate Senate and House mandated placement of memorials in ANC to protect the limited remaining area that is suitable for burials within ANC.
    • Make a strategic decision to wait for the first Non-Governmental Agency seeking a commemorative monument to make it through the yet to be determined ANC approval process.
  • November 29, 2017:
  • January 2018:
    • Speak with Retired Air Force Colonel Robert Hesselbein who led the effort to obtain ANC approval for the VHPC memorial.
      • Colonel Hesselbein provides the VHPC Memorial proposal to the US Commission of Fine Arts (CFA) containing the impressive design drawings of the VHPC memorial.
      • He informs:
        • That it took over 4 years, Congressional lobbying, Congressional Hearings and 5-iterations with the CFA to gain approval.
        • The memorial cost including shipping installation was ~$6.000
  • February 2018:
    • Phone call with Major Shannon Way:
      • Request & receive a documented approval process diagram.
      • Learn why, from ANC's perspective, the VHPC memorial proposal required 4 years to obtain approval.
      • Inform that our approach to minimize the approval process  duration would be to:
        • Match exactly the design, dimensions, material & construction of the recently approved VHPC memorial.
          • Replace the image of  the Huey with one of the USS Thresher.
          • Replace the text while maintaining the exact font used by the recently approved  VHPC memorial.
        • Respect and follow all ANC policies and fully adhere to the 2012 legislation.
        • Run an effective and efficient fundraising campaign to enable the creation of a perpetual care trust fund that would cover the anticipated inflation costs for memorial replacement in 100 to 200 years.
  • March 2018:
    • Incorporate the USS Thresher Arlington National Cemetery Memorial Foundation in the State of NH.
    • Create the proposed  USS Thresher ANC Commemorative Monument design :
      • Kevin Galeaz pens the memorial text: "IN  HONOR OF THE 129 MEN LOST ABOARD USS THRESHER (SSN-593) AND THEIR SUBSAFE LEGACY".
      • RADM John Clark Orzalli selects the starboard bow image of the USS Thresher.
    • Provide the proposed memorial design concept to Granite Industries of Vermont
      • Receive an artists rendering, architectural diagram  & cost estimate.
    • Obtain quote from Kline Memorials in VA, the memorial company who will prepare the site and erect the memorial.
    • Estimate fundraising goals for perpetual care using the Bureau of Labor Statistics CPI inflation calculator. Learn that $1 in 1918 is worth $18 in 2018.
    • Obtain services of Flipcause, the Online fundraising site.
    • Begin public affairs campaign.
      • Kick off a project supporters letter writing campaign.
  • April 5, 2018:
    • Receive Letter to USS Thresher Supporters from Ms. Renea C. Yates, Deputy Superintendent for Cemetery Administration, ANC, stressing the importance of ensuring that the memorial does not become a burden to the tax payers in the future.
  • April 13, 2018 :
    • 55th Annual USS Thresher Memorial Service
      • Notify family & former crew of the ANC commemorative monuments approval process, our memorial design and our strategy to gain approval.
      • Start the fundraising campaign.
  • May 1, 2018
  • June 27, 2018:
    • IRS grants our tax exempt status retroactive to March 7, 2018.
    • The processing of our 501c3 IRS tax exempt request form was expedited by Thresher Family Member Christine Gauthier & Congresswoman Carol Shea Porter.
  • July 1, 2018:
    • Fundraising campaign total reaches $52,838, enough for proposal creation.
  • July 10 2018:
    • The USS Thresher ANC Commemorative Monument Proposal is completed with contributions from:
      • Kevin Galeaz, Foundation President
      • RADM John Clarke Orzalli, USN Retired, Foundation Treasurer (Justification)
      • Daniel Huchinson, PhD, Assistant Professor of History, Belmont Abbey College (Independent Study)
      • Granite Industries of Vermont (Design concept and architectural drawings)
      • Robin Galeaz (List of donors as of July 9, 2019)
    • The USS Thresher ANC Commemorative Monument Proposal is sent by the Foundation to Ms. Karen Durham-Aguilera, Executive Director, Army National Military Cemeteries
  • September 6, 2018:
  • September 7, 2018:
    • ANC Advisory Committee Meeting
      • Foundation Attendees:
        • President Kevin Galeaz
        • Treasurer RADM John Clarke Orzalli
        • Board Member & USS Thresher Family Member Thomas Wiley
      •  Supporting Attendees:
        • Naval Submarine League  (NSL) Executive Director Captain Tim Oliver
        • Former NSL Executive Director Captain C. Michael Garverick
      • Our proposal was not on the meeting agenda due to not making it through the ANC Remember & Explore Subcommittee the previous day.
      • We made the most our visit by listening to the deliberations and introducing ourselves to Ms. Renea C. Yates, Deputy Superintendent for Cemetery Administration, ANC, and  the ANC Advisory Committee members.
  • October 2018:
    • ANC Commemorative Monuments Working Group requests and obtains an evaluation of our proposal assertions from Naval Historians at the Naval History and Heritage Command.
  • November 1, 2018:
    • Update and resubmit proposal with current fundraising bank and on-line statements totaling $63,066.
  • November  7, 2018
    • ANC Remember & Explore Subcommittee Meeting
      • Foundation Attendees:
        • President Kevin Galeaz
        • Treasurer RADM John Clarke Orzalli
        • Board Member & USS Thresher Family Member Thomas Wiley
      • ANC Commemorative Monuments Working Group recommends unanimous approval to the Subcommittee.
      • Foundation President Kevin Galeaz provides 3-minute address to Subcommittee members.
      • During deliberations on perpetual care, Kevin Galeaz notifies the Subcommittee that with our monument purchase, Granite Industries of Vermont provides perpetual care monument insurance that is covered by a consortium of six memorial companies.
      • ANC Remember & Explore Subcommittee members vote unanimously to approve our request for consideration by the ANC Advisory Committee.
    • ANC Advisory Committee Meeting
      • Foundation Attendees:
        • President Kevin Galeaz
        • Treasurer RADM John Clarke Orzalli
        • Board Member & USS Thresher Family Member Thomas Wiley
      • ANC Remember & Explore Subcommittee Chairman Command Sgt. Maj. Mark L. Farley reports that unanimous approval for our memorial  proposal to be considered by the ANC Advisory Committee was made by the Subcommittee.
      • Foundation President Kevin Galeaz provides 3-minute address to ANC Advisory Committee Minutes.
      • ANC Advisory Committee members unanimously vote to recommend approval of our proposal.
  • November 9, 2019:
  • December 12, 2018:
    • Receive phone notification from ANC that a recommendation to approve our memorial proposal  has been made to the Secretary of the Army by Ms. Karen Durham-Aguilera, Executive Director, Army National Military Cemeteries & Ms. Katherine Kelley, Superintendent, Arlington National Cemeteries.
  • January 28, 2019:
  • March 4, 2019:
    • ANC Engineering, Operations & Grounds staff escort Foundation representatives Kevin Galeaz & Tom Wiley on the grounds of ANC to show us four potential locations suitable for the USS Thresher ANC Memorial.
  • April 5, 2019:
  • April 26, 2019:
  • May 1, 2019:
  • May 2, 2019:
    • ANC Engineering team along with Tom Wiley & Major Way look at exactly where to place the memorial in the chosen location region. Kevin Galeaz is connected via cell phone with Major Way who is providing  images sent via text message for feedback.
  • May 8, 2019:
    • Kevin Galeaz fine tunes  the exact location & Major Way takes photographs to include in the CFA proposal.
  • May 28, 2019:
  • May 31, 2019:
  • June 1, 2019:
    • Send 10 copies of the USS Thresher ANC Memorial Design & Location Proposal to CFA as required.
    • These copies are in addition to the formal CFA proposal submittal that must come direct from  ANC.
  • June 6, 2019:
    • Receive notice that the USS Thresher ANC Memorial Design & Location Proposal was hand delivered to the US Commission of Fine Arts by Major Shannon Way, ANC Strategic Planner.
  • June 10, 2019:
    • Contact  Fred Lindstom @ CFA to ensure the proposal meets their requirements.
      • Receive positive feedback regarding the proposal contents and merit. Learn that  the USS Thresher ANC Commemorative Monument Design & Location Proposal is recommended for approval by the CFA.
  • June 20, 2019
    • CFA Committee Meeting
      • Foundation Attendees
        • President Kevin Galeaz
        • Board Member & USS Thresher Family Member Thomas Wiley
      • The CFA Committee votes to approve!
  • June 21, 2019
    • Notify Foundation Board Members, ANC, USS Thresher Family & Former Crew  & project supporters of CFA approval, and September 26 Dedication Ceremony & Reception.
    • Issue CFA approval press release
    • Email Major Shannon Way, ANC Strategic Planner
      • Request contact to coordinate the monument site preparation and installation with Kline Memorials.
      • Request collaboration with appropriate ANC Staff to train the ANC Tour Guides on what message should be conveyed to those viewing the memorial.
      • Request the USS Thresher ANC Commemorative Monument be added to the list on the Monuments and Memorials web page.