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 Author  Topic: Melville, RI
Dick Listro

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Dick Listro  Posted on: Jun 10, 2007 - 7:12pm
Today my wife and I went to Newport after which I drove over to look at what remains of PT Boat School in Melville, Rhode Island.. Not much. If you look hard you would find a thriving commercial marina with some older quonset hut type buidings which I assume are remnants from the school/base. The concrete pier is intact. Too bad that there wasn't some sort of historical museum on the site. If theere is I missed it. Next time I go over I will take my fater with me. He is Don Listor and was QMC on PT359 of Ron 27. 85 and healthy.


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Frank J Andruss Sr

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Frank J Andruss Sr   Send Email To Frank J Andruss Sr Posted on: Jun 10, 2007 - 10:46pm
Dick

The four or five Quonset Huts are the original ones from WWII, which sat on the Concrete Pier. You can see the entrance to the Finger Docks by looking to the left while standing on the concrete dock. You can clearly see the large White Tank, which I am not sure what was in it during the War. The old Marine Barracks, which is crumbling sits to the left of the last Quonset Hut on the Pier. You can really get a feel for the entrance in the Winter months when some of the boats are pulled from the water, and I believe during the summer, you can take a site seeing tour by boat, which will take you right by the old Base from the water. I viewed the area many times when my Exhibit was at the Navy War College Museum. The first Quonset Hut several years ago was a Resturant, which featured many many artifacts from the PT BOAT SERVICE. It was really something to see. When the place went out of buisness, I am not sure what happened to all of the artifacts.


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Dick Listro

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Dick Listro  Posted on: Jun 11, 2007 - 10:59am
Frank,

There is an aerial of Mellville on the Peter Tare web site. I copied it and blew it up and I compared it to what it looks like now from the aerial version of Mapquest. Really interesting. The roads, the rails, all the fuel tanks, some of the bldgs, the concrete pier, some of the quonset huts are still there
.
Good exercise.

I had breakfast with Dad today . Today is his 85th birthday, we celebrated it this weekend.


Dick


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Frank J Andruss Sr

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Frank J Andruss Sr   Send Email To Frank J Andruss Sr Posted on: Jun 11, 2007 - 11:55am
Dick:

Please tell Dad happy birthday. What a treat to have your dad still with you at that age. My Dad was my best friend and I lost him at the age of 60. Healthy all his life, but ciggaretts cut it short. Glad you have a good time there, and yes the aerial view does offer some interesting points of the Base.


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  Greg Matthews

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Greg Matthews   Send Email To Greg Matthews Posted on: Jun 12, 2007 - 8:30am
Dick,


It is extremely interesting to me, about the Training site in Melville. My Dad use to speak of it quite often with his Veteran buddies, but I paid little attention at the time. It is amazing to me, that when you really miss someone you love and is very very special to you like my father was to me; how much you become interested in his life and what he went through. I am at that stage now. My father served on the 221 boat and has been gone for 15 years now. I am very interested now, as if it was a hobby, almost an obsession, as to his life with the PT Boats. After reading your post, I am seriously considering taking my August vacation and driving from Toledo,Ohio where I live, and going to Melville, to see the Training site. Can you or anyone tell me if it is still possible to drive through or walk through the site(base), or is it a secured area and fenced off? Also, would it be worth the trip, as far as taking photos of the remaining structures and area?

Greg


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Frank J Andruss Sr

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Frank J Andruss Sr   Send Email To Frank J Andruss Sr Posted on: Jun 12, 2007 - 11:54am
Greg:

For me seeing the old Melville site was really something, although during the summer months you can't really tell very much. The amount of boats in the basin and the sheer size of some of them, really obscure your view. The best time to view the area is when some of these boats have been removed, which is in the Fall. As I said in my earlier post, you can see the remaining quonset huts on the concrete pier and some of the huge Tanks. When I went for the first time, my mind just took over, and all I saw was students going from class to class, PT Boats on the finger piers, and all the instruction that went into the making of a PT Boat Student. I have several photo's of boats docked next to the concrete pier, so standing on the dock was like I was there.

Depending on how you look at it, it's a long trip for you to take just to view what is left. Most of the area is a Marina, with several areas used for repair. The quonset huts on the pier are a Resturant for the rich boys who own those big boats, and other small business's. My ride there took 2.5 hours, so it was worth it. Newport is a very nice place, so you could combine a vacation there and take in the old Melville site as part of your trip. There is tons of things to do in Newport, so if you have kids they will love it. It is a typical Rhode Island Boating area, with beaches and a great town for the wife ( if you have one ) to Shop. As much as I have a strong passion for the boats and my place on earth to keep the boats in the public eye, jumping on a plane, just to see this area might be a bit much to ask. Plannning a vacation to Newport and including the old Melville site would then be worth the trip.




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Greg Matthews

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Greg Matthews   Send Email To Greg Matthews Posted on: Jun 12, 2007 - 8:16pm
Frank-



Thanx for all the information and your opinion. Can you send me some photos of the area? I would appreciate it and still considering going there.



Greg


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Frank J Andruss Sr

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Frank J Andruss Sr   Send Email To Frank J Andruss Sr Posted on: Jun 12, 2007 - 9:52pm
Greg:

I am not sure what photos you are refering to, but may I suggest you put in Newport, Rhode Island in your search engine. Many sites of the area will pop up, including free guides to the area, places to stay, food, things to do, that type of thing. I took photos of the old Melville site while I was there. If I can find them, I will send you a few, although at the moment, I am getting set up for my PT BOAT EXHIBIT, so my time is limited right now. GOOD LUCK.


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Greg Matthews

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Greg Matthews   Send Email To Greg Matthews Posted on: Jun 13, 2007 - 6:42am
Frank-


I hope the exhibit goes well for you. I will start checking around Newport, Rhode Island.

Greg





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Dick Listro

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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Dick Listro  Posted on: Jun 13, 2007 - 8:17am
Greg,

Melville, is a very large marina with hundreds of very large sailboats and power boats on at the docks and even more dry docked. The boats are jammed in everywhere.It is a very busy commercial marina that just happens to be the Melville, RI PT School. By that I mean no efforts have been made to treat it as a historical site. Some of the original bldgs are still standing while others are no longer there.

It is open to the public.

As to the area, About 10 miles from Melville going down 114S is Newport, RI. Newport is a high end tourist city. Well known for the tours of it's Newport mansions, it's on the water, with many colonial bodgs from the 1700's. It's a fantastic boating area, as is all of Narragansett bay.

Of great interest in Fall River, MA is Battleship Cove. At Battleship Cove is the US Massachusetts an Elco 80" PT Boat (617) and the PT Boat Org's Museum.

Fall River is 15 miles north of Mellville and a it is a fantastic tour. I highly recommend it. Actually it's better visit than the Mellville school. You really have to use yuor imagination there - or for Dad's, his recollections and memory took him back to 1943.

If you're lucky and tell them that your Dad served on a PT boat, they just might let you onboard the 617.

I do have some excellent pictures of the 617 and some pictures of the quonset huts at teh old school. I just don't know how to post them on here.

Dick Listro


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