By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class (AW) Ricardo J Danan, USS Frank Cable Public Affairs
APRA HARBOR, Guam (Dec. 18, 2012) — Members of the 721 Club, named for the Los Angeles-class submarine USS Chicago (SSN 721), were treated to a tour and luncheon aboard the submarine tender USS Frank Cable (AS 40), Dec. 18.
The 721 Club is an outgrowth of the commissioning committee formed to provide funds for the boat’s original commissioning party. It was commissioned in 1986, and once the boat was launched into the active fleet, the members of the commissioning committee decided to convert themselves into a permanent civilian support group for the USS Chicago’s crew.
“This is the 26th year the 721 Club has visited the USS Chicago in her homeport,”
said Dave Kohn, Director of Public Affairs Union League Club of Chicago. “Last year, we celebrated the 25th year of the boat’s commissioning at a ceremony in Pearl Harbor, and it was a really moving experience.”
The boat’s hull number plays an important role and is more then the name of the club. “Our initiation fee is 721 dollars,” said club member John Lindstrom. “And our dues each year are 72 dollars and ten cents.”
The tour of the Frank Cable took place as the ship shifted berths from the Guam Shipyard to her normal berth at Polaris Point just across Apra Harbor.
Frank Cable’s primary mission is to perform maintenance and support of submarines and surface vessels deployed in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of responsibility.
“Submarines always have a lot of work for these guys to do, so they stay very busy,” said Frank Cable’s Repair Master Chief, Master Chief Hull Maintenance Technician Kenneth Wagner. “The ship can pretty much do anything. The only thing that stops us is your imagination. If you can dream it, we can build it.”
The tour of the ship included visits to the Sail Shop, Carpenter Shop, Sheet Metal Shop, Pipe Fitting Shop and Machine Shop. This gave the crew the chance to show the vast skills and capabilities they use to support and maintain the submarines of the 7th Fleet.
The 721 Club was also shown the full Dental and Medical facilities, as well as the ship’s bridge, before dining in the Chiefs’ Mess. The Dive Locker and Recompression Chamber were the last part of their tour.
“Because the Frank Cable is so much apart of the Navy’s operation in the submarine fleet, we wanted an opportunity to come aboard and learn how she operates,” said Dave Kohn. “We realize that our submarine fleet could not operate as efficiently as it does without a great vessel like the Cable.”