Welcome Aboard the 'Cyber-Hannah'
How many of you former HANCOCK CV/CVA-19 - CAG/CVG-21 crew members remember seeing this sign when coming aboard
the Hannah? The Mission Statement of our ship was open to view to all who passed through the Quarterdeck area from
the Brow, and burned its message into our memory.
The years have passed but have not faded the Memories of our
Shipmates from remembering how vibrant and alive we were at this Pivotal time in our lives.
The Mission has changed somewhat since they put the Hannah to rest, as it has become my own mission to keep these Memories alive for
all of us.
This New Mission of the "Cyber-Hannah" has changed
somewhat to accommodate The New Ocean which we navigate upon - The Cyber Ocean...
As Hannah welcomed you aboard, and stated her mission, this
site also welcomes you aboard, and states to you our continued Mission: To vouch-safe the Memory of our Ship, the
USS Hancock and her Crew; to keep it alive for future generations; to Educate and Enrich all who share an interest
in great naval warships, of which the Hancock proudly stands as one of the very best, having made her indelible
mark in the annals of Naval History.
The USS Hancock, once proudly hailed the 'Fighting Hannah'
by those who sailed in her, is today known as the...
for now she is only a memory.
However, during her Commission, she was a source of Pride
to those who were her Heartbeat and her Life, for it is said that a ship comes alive when her Crew is aboard...
She is today, regarded by those same gallant men, with the
same devotion, though many years have passed since she was sold for scrap, her memory lives on in all of us.
For most, those memories are fond ones, to others she is remembered
with less regard, but it's a fact, if you didn't love her, you at least respected her and the underlying power
that made her move and breathe: The camaraderie of the Crew-Spirit as She labored under the awesome responsibility
of Peace Keeping. That same Crew-Spirit lives on in all of us today, and ever so shall it be.
To most of us, this devotion was only realized after we hit
middle age when the passing of years had hazed over the not-so-glamorous times, while helping us to remember, fondly
the good things which had become more radiant.
The passage of time and a keener sense of retrospection has
helped us to come full circle with our feelings about military life; the ship we called home for so long, and the
times we called Youth. Instead of trying to forget those days, we now find ourselves remembering them as some of
the most exciting and dramatic moments of our lives; moments and experiences cherished and now missed. Those were
the moments of our coming of age; a time to which we'd like to return, if but for a brief stay.
Thoughts of seeing her for the first time, as one approached
her on Pier #3, sent chills down one's spine. She was a monster, Gray and Proud, tied up at that Pier so long ago;
yet today's sailors would not agree, as the crew of the Super Carriers would regard her as a midget when compared
to their ship.. but in our time, and in our youth, there was none other that stood par to her. When we first gazed
upon her, and with as much pride as a proud sailor could muster, we mounted the afterbrow and walked steadily up
to the Quarterdeck to the Officer of the Deck, requesting permission to come aboard. Thoughts in your mind would
query, "is this steel mass really floating on water?" Then we quickly found out it truly was, as ship
began to move and sway as we cast off lines for our first embarkment.
Her World War II Record stands, as the Proud Lady she was,
winning seven battle stars, and various other ribbons and awards. During the ensuing years she continued her prowess.
Today, her Record speaks for herself. She made 7 far-east
Vietnam cruises, never missing any of her commitments, and in at least one case, stood in as 'northern carrier'
when MIDWAY had to return to Pearl for repairs.
Due to the commitment of her Crew, she became known as one
of the hardest working ships on Yankee Station during the Vietnam War, keeping pace with a tradition which was
forged in the crucible of World War II - a Tradition of Excellence which has always been a credit to those who
were her lifeblood and heartbeat: Her Crew.
Anyone who can say proudly that they were a member of her
Crew, share in this collective pride. She kept this Prowess during 32 years of Honorable Service, and when she
was finally struck from the Naval Ships List, and scrapped, she went proudly. We, who were her crew, proudly and
at attention, render Honors and salute her as our "Fighting Hannah." Such pride is akin to Love itself.
One might ask how one can 'Love' a ship? For, after all, it
is only 45,000 tons of Steel plate, and rivets.
While it is true she is only steel plate and rivets, any true
Sailor knows she becomes a Living Thing, when her Crew is aboard. It isn't just a ship then; it becomes a Noble
Lady deserving Love, Respect, Devotion and Loving Care, and this, we gave her happily.
It is this Tender Care that makes the ship move and breathe.
It comes to life. It has a soul, and a Beating Heart...
We, were her Heartbeat and her Life.
Hello, I am Jake, Yeoman Third Class, chief administrator and Yeoman of this Memorial Site to the
Hancock and her Crew. Having served as a Captain's Yeoman, I believe I am filling the correct billet here. After
your visit, I hope that you would sound off with a hearty affirmative. If not, I'd appreciate hearing about it
using any Email Button on this site.
It is with Fond Devotion that I have labored long and hard
to put up this Site as a constant and hopefully, perpetual Memorial to our Ship, the 'Fighting Hannah'!
I ask that you come aboard and relive the life we all had
in her, and help me keep the Memory of this great Naval Warship alive for the future generations. Remember that
the ship is her crew.. and where her crew is, there goes the ship...
Why a site commemorating a ship and our Rites of Passage to
manhood? My philosophy on this is,
'it's nice to take little jaunts back into our past, which keeps us thinking positive and able to go ahead with
our lives..' for as the old saying goes, "You can't know where you are going, if you don't know where you
have been..." I have lived my life thinking this way. I think it's a good outlook.. Anyway, climbing to the
top of the Mast of one's life, he can see all around..
Right now, take a little look behind us, to a time we thought
would last forever.... to our Youth. Come with me for awhile into yesterday, to our coming of age, to a Time, whether
in Peace Time or War.. a time when Patriotism was still something to be Proud of.. hopefully, a new generation
will learn from the past, that Patriotism isn't something that our Founding Fathers alone possessed. It is something
that we all can have, but nothing comes without good hard work, study, and lots of spit and polish - and Devotion
to the Sacred Oath we take when we salute Colors.
Come with me for a brief stay aboard a proud ship... Come
and join us on a Cruise into the Past aboard...
Ship out to the Main Hancock Photo Gallery