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The United States Submarine Veterans was started by a group of United States Submarine Veterans of World War II led by Dominic Joe Negri and others who shared a belief in the need of an organization open to all submariners from the very beginning of the Submarine Service through to the present and into the future-not limited to just those who served so ably in the Second World War.

They took this action following two unsuccessful votes to open up regular membership in SVWW II to U.S. submariners of all eras and their determination was made stronger with the loss of USS THRESHER in 1963.

In Groton, Connecticut, the Submarine Capitol of the World, these men started contacting past shipmates. They hit a responsive chord and favorable response came from Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and many more from Connecticut.

After holding preliminary meetings in the above states, a final meeting was held October 12, 1963 in Orange, New Jersey and the United States Submarine Veterans organization was born. The following officers were appointed to serve in an acting capacity until regular elections could be held in the summer of 1964. Robert Link, President; Ken 0. Walkington, Vice President; Joe Burges, Secretary; Mike Drucker, Treasurer.

Several months later, on May 24, 1964, the organization was officially chartered in New London (Signers: Joe Negri, Ken 0. Walkington and Joe Marion) and Incorporated in the State of Connecticut, with additional plank owners being Warren Ed Gannon, Angelo La Pelosa, Robert Link, Thomas Rowan, and Hugh Trimble. Joe Negri was elected the first State commander and Dick Higham was elected the first Base Commander of Connecticut Base #1 (later known as Groton Base). This charter gave USSVI the license to operate and conduct business in all fifty states.

The Clubhouse at 40 School Street became a reality in 1966. Due to the fact that the Groton Base was incorporated within the state of Connecticut and they had their own building, it was voted that Groton become the National Headquarters of USSVI.

The purposes of USSVI can be defined as Remembrance of our departed submarine shipmates and the sacrifices they made in the name of freedom; Comradeship and good times with our USSVI Subvet brothers at meetings and conventions, and Benevolence, by doing charitable works in support of our creed for all submariners and our offspring.

To better establish communication and rapport, an organization magazine, Submarine National Review, came into existence in May, 1966, later to become the American Submariner.

In the intervening nearly 40 years, USS VI has grown to 10,000 members, with 97 Bases located throughout the U.S. and an active charitable foundation established to support the good works Subvets wishes to carry out. Groton Base has grown to nearly 2,000 members, far outstripping all other Bases, and the National Office has moved to Silverdale, Washington, reflecting the National nature of USSVJ.

Joe Negri and the other founders ofUSSVI would be proud and we honor our finest with the annual prestigious Joe Negri award in honor of this farseeing WW II Subvet who wanted to create a organization for all submariners, no matter when they served.

For more information about U.S. Submarine Veterans please visit http://USSVl.ORG, call 1-877-542-DIVE or email:

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