Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Hi Guys,

Came across this on the NY Times Obits. at: It looked familiar so checked at: and the name and town match up and I remember Joe's ticket expiring some time ago.

I worked with Joe at Empire when I first started at CBS 42 years ago along with "Ace" and Bob Strutzel and Frank Beatty and a few others. Later he was in Video Tape while I was in VT Maint.

Prior to CBS Joe was the Radio Officer on the "Savannah", the first and only U.S. Nuclear Powered US Merchant Marine Vessel. ( On a number of occasions she was in Bremerhaven Germany while I was stationed there, and the word around my Navy group was that "They Were Giving Tours of Her", but for some reason every time I was either at work or doing something which prevented me from taking one of the tours of the "Savannah". Turns out that Joe was the guy giving the tours. He told me it was because he was a big good-looking Italian guy with great personality.

Needless to say Joe was one of the best on CW.

Also, FYI we had two other ex WWII Merchant Marine Radio Officers at Empire at that time, W2BOG (Bill Kortlang)and W2BCU (Bill Lewis). Bill Lewis also worked at the CBS VOA Transmitter in Lincoln Park earlier. He was torpedoed twice in the North Atlantic and pulled out of the water. He said he survived by floating in the ship's fuel oil to keep warm.
George, W2DM