“Sub Lady” Mary Bentz Passes

Posted on Sunday 15 March 2015

To our dear friends in the USS Grunion community,

I have the sad duty to inform you that “Sub Lady” Mary Bentz passed away on March 10th at Montgomery County Maryland Hospice’s Casey House in Rockville, MD, after an almost 4-year battle with the complications of pancreatic cancer.

As you know, Mary was instrumental in locating many of the families of the crew of the USS Grunion (SS-216), and collaborated in publishing the book “Fatal Dive: Solving the World War II Mystery of the USS Grunion”, which told the story of the search for and discovery of Grunion. She also co-authored a book called “We Remember Them: A Biographical Supplement to Fatal Dive.” If you aren’t familiar with these books, they are available at Amazon.com.

A viewing for Mary will be held at Robert A. Pumphrey Funeral Home, 300 W. Montgomery Ave., Rockville, MD, on Sunday, March 22, from 3-5 and 7-9 PM if you are near enough to Rockville to attend. To get there, take I 270 north and exit east on MD Route 28 to the 300 address on the right.

At her request, Mary will be cremated after the viewing. At a later date in the spring, we plan to have a memorial service and Mass for her.

In lieu of flowers, please donate to the Bowfin Submarine Museum (bowfin.org/support-us), or to Mary’s choir of 30 years, Washington Master Chorale (washingtonmasterchorale.org/support), or to Montgomery County MD Hospice’s Casey House (montgomeryhospice.org/donate).

When Mary left this earth, we are confident that 70 submarine sailors met her at the Pearly Gates in dress whites with salutes, smiles, and hugs for the legacy that Mary left for them among their relatives and friends.

Love to you all,

Dick Bentz

Gone From My Sight
by Henry Van Dyke
I am standing upon the seashore. A ship, at my side,
spreads her white sails to the moving breeze and starts
for the blue ocean. She is an object of beauty and strength.
I stand and watch her until, at length, she hangs like a speck
of white cloud just where the sea and sky come to mingle with each other.

Then, someone at my side says, “There, she is gone.”

Gone where?

Gone from my sight. That is all. She is just as large in mast,
hull and spar as she was when she left my side.
And, she is just as able to bear her load of living freight to her destined port.
Her diminished size is in me — not in her.

And, just at the moment when someone says, “There, she is gone,”
there are other eyes watching her coming, and other voices
ready to take up the glad shout, “Here she comes!”

And that is dying…

Bruce @ 3:34 pm
Filed under: general
July 30, 2014

Posted on Wednesday 16 July 2014

Bruce @ 4:51 pm
Filed under: general
July 30, 2013

Posted on Monday 29 July 2013

Bruce @ 1:07 pm
Filed under: general
70th Anniversary

Posted on Monday 30 July 2012

Bruce mbabele@999info.net

Jim Abele & Family July 1941
The Abele Family July 1941

A year later, almost to the day, Jim and 69 other individuals were gone.

They shall not be forgotten.

The first edition of the Grunion Book, Fatal Dive is available. I would suggest waiting for the second edition as there are a number of modifications being made.

Bruce @ 2:00 pm
Filed under: general
Dr John Fakan

Posted on Saturday 7 July 2012

Bruce: mbabele@999info.net

A sad note

Dr. John Fakan, the person who hosted our Memorial at the USS Cod, passed away July 5 after a long bout with cancer. He was a major player in determining what caused the loss of the Grunion, and was responsible for getting Navy recognition of the wreck.

My wife Susan recalls an incident that tells a lot.

Zack Galler & Dr John Fakan

“I can’t remember the exact circumstance, perhaps it was in conjunction with the Grunion talk at the Museum of Science, but John came to Newton and had dinner with us. He was sitting beside me at the table and for some reason we began to talk about slide rules, which have always fascinated me — not because I understand one single thing about how to use them, but because of their elegant design. Surprisingly, or perhaps not, he had a one in his pocket. He had others as well, including one that had been on one of the flights into space, perhaps even on the flight to the moon. I may be embellishing the story to say the flight to the moon, but none-the-less, he had this wonderful little device that had been into space. He explained that if an onboard computer failed, the astronauts could make necessary calculations and more with a manual slide rule. I doubt that I shall ever learn to use a slide rule, but I shall never forget John, his slide rule, his warmth, and his wonderful stories about life’s adventures.”

Here is his obituary.

Bruce @ 2:55 pm
Filed under: general