A reporter Sheila Rhoades sent the following note. It is worth reading.
“As a reporter I have learned to try to find the local angle â€¹ the Wabash
County connection â€¹ in every story I write. When I first covered the story
of the USS Grunion in April, I learned about Mona Kime, a Southwood
Elementary music teacher who had lost her brother, Torpedoman’s Mate 3rd
Class Charles Hutchinson, who went missing when the Grunion was lost.
The more I researched the story, the bigger the story became. I had
almost daily contact with Bruce Abele and Dick and Mary Bentz, and the
deeper I got into the story, the more attached to the Grunion Family I
After the articles were written, I was contacted by Mary and asked if I
would like to come to the Grunion Memorial in Cleveland. My husband and I
eventually worked out a way we could both attend and shortly before we were
to leave Mary asked me if I would represent the family of Charles
Hutchinson, because his family was unable to be there due to health issues
and prior committments. I was to pull his flower, board the USS Cod, and
cast the flower into Lake Erie. Needless to say I was extremely honored.
Mona gave me her blessing as I asked her permission to represent her and
When I arrived in Cleveland, I was greeted with open arms. I was welcomed
into the exclusive group and embraced as one of the Grunion Family.
It was then that I realized the local story was actually an international
story that pertained to all of us in some way. Whether we have had a family
member serve in the military, if we have lost a loved one in service to
their country, or have a loved one serving our country today, we are all
touched by the tragedy and triumph of Grunion.
What my trip to Cleveland taught me is that as long as we keep alive the
memory of those who fought and died for our country, we are all â€¹ in some
small way â€¹ a member of the Grunion Family. ”
Sheila Rhoades – Wabash Plain Dealer