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Thursday, August 11, 2005Past Issues - S | M | T | W | T | F | S
 
South Jersey

Wednesday, September 2, 1998

Up close, personal

I have had the rare privilege in my capacity as communications specialist for Sen. John J. Matheussen to be involved behind the scenes in the Home Port Alliance's dedicated efforts to convince the USS New Jersey Battleship Commission that Camden is the pre-eminent site for the berthing of the majestic BB-62. I thought it time to come out publicly as a citizen and lend my voice to support the South Jersey site.

My father served in the Army during the Korean War. He was always quiet about his sacrifice for his country like countless other veterans our office has met on this project. They went without hesitation at great personal peril to war and in times of conflict. I'd like to thank them for that.

Just prior to the battleship commission's visit to Camden on July 31 for our spectacular presentation, I had the chance to do a dry run of the boat-ride aspect of our planned event. The Camden Fire Department boat took a small contingent of alliance members on the water to the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard, where we saw dry-docked the mighty sister ship to the New Jersey, the USS Iowa. For me, someone who had never been near or on a battleship, it was a dramatic and moving moment. For the first time, I could imagine the magnificence and history of our namesake battleship, the USS New Jersey, and how she would look to the world at our Camden Waterfront.

Through my job, I have had the chance to meet and talk with so many people from the Delaware Valley who built the ship, fought on it and deeply love it. We all agree we deserve the chance to complete the battleship's circle of life. She was born here, and we would welcome her back on the Camden Waterfront by providing her with the reverent care she deserves.

ANN DuVALL
Sewell



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