Miami Sea Scout Ships 537 and 520

How it all began
by D. Wood


Memories of
S.S.S. 537


Dan Hogg

Rick McClure

Nancy Morris



















 Vance Carper 
 Click to enlarge image 
 I respectfully request permission to come aboard,

What a pleasure and a blast from the past it was to find and explore your website. Memories of my days in the Sea Scouts are some of the best of my life. From the moment we cast off on that first cruise on the "Stranger" at night out of the Cocoanut Grove Marina in 1968, I was hooked. I often try to explain to friends what it was like growing up under the influence of Mr. Wood, the rest of the guys, and the vessels from Ship 520. I start by telling them about the "Stranger" with its flying bridge and twin 427's , and the Ten-Bees with its round bottom and 440, and the 32-foot Islander with its Balloon Spinnaker and auto-pilot. They usually comment that it must have been nice being brought up as a rich kid. My response to that is yes, I was rich. However, not with money, instead I was blessed with being rich with fellowship and brotherhood. Then I tell them the stories about Wood standing on the aft deck in his boxers with a stogie barking orders, Saunders and I stripping to our skivys and life jackets and bailing for a man overboard drill, giving Sean a red-belly for cussing, throwing Mike in the stream at Deep Creek for being last out of the bunk, scaring the bear-crap out of the newbees at night along a mountain trail, choosing sides for king-of-the-dock at Rathman's Marina, sailing all night and watching the sun rise through the waves while at the helm in the middle of the GulfStream, and diving at night to clear an intake for an overheated starboard engine. Then, if they're still listening they'll say we must have been crazy or stupid, and I'll say "No, you just had to be there", You just had to experience that fellowship, that brotherhood, that influence, that..., that..., lasts a lifetime.

My life since those times with SSS-520 includes: graduating from the University of Florida in 1977 with an Engineering/Surveying Degree; moving to Daytona Beach in 1979; getting registered as a Professional Land Surveyor and a Certified Diver in 1980; moving to Orlando in 1981; becoming a Surveying Department head in 1986; getting married to Geralyn Moughan in 1987; losing my Mom and Geralyn's Dad in 1990; buying a Pet Store in 1992; closing the Pet Store and going to work for PBS&J in 1995 where I still work as a Project Manager today. Geralyn and I will be married for 18 years this August 15th. We don't have any kids, just a lot of pets. My Dad remarried and lives in Sebring. My sister and brother and their families still live in Miami. Geralyn and I have a passion for cars and we spend a lot of our vacations on the East or West coast with our 18-foot bay boat.

Thanks to all again for the memories,

I'll stay in touch,





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