96 year-old Pat Fedele, the “ship’s tenor”, passed away today. I got to know Pat when I was working on my “Baked Beans” series about CA-69 in WWII. I am deeply saddened by his passing, as he and I developed a nice friendship over the years. He knew my father, and he had lots of great stories to tell. He and his wife Sandi welcomed me into their home and their lives, and I am enriched because of them.
Pat was a plankowner, and like my dad and hundreds of others, spent months in Boston waiting for the ship to be finished before mustering aboard and heading for the Pacific. Pat worked hard to earn promotions while on board, and rated COX in January of ’45. I have lots of stories to share – another time.