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Our hearts are saddened by the loss of our dear Captain Walter "Dick" Shafer and our thoughts and prayers are with his family.

Text of the Facebook post from his son, John, is repeated below.
Dear Friends, It is my sad duty to tell you that at 10:15 am on Saturday the 21st of March, my father, Walter Richard Shafer, known to many as Dick, Fuz or the Captain, died after a brief illness. My Mother Joanne, known to most as Jo or Muz, was with him as he passed. Also, with him was my brother, Robert. Many of his family wished we could have been there at his side but were unable due to the necessary restrictions in place due to the COVID-19 crisis. He is survived by son Richard, his wife Gwen and child Robert; son John, his wife Evelyn and their children Sydney and Mallory; son Robert, his wife Beth and their children Chris, Meghan, and Michael; and daughter Beth, her husband Pete and their children Ian and Calum. In addition, he is survived by the family of his German exchange daughter, Tanja and her husband Stefan and children Jannek and Torben. Fuz asked that he be remembered and his life celebrated with an appropriate event at a future date when we all can gather in safety. Plans for a more formal memorial service are also in the works. We will inform everyone of both these events when we have a more definite time and place. Shortly before his death, Fuz was able to join his extended family for a group teleconference. All of his children and their spouses, his grandchildren and his wife were able to see and speak to him. Despite his weakness, he was able to share this last meeting with the 17 people in the world who love him the most. He was a remarkable husband, father, brother, leader and friend. The world will truly be a poorer place for his absence, but he leaves behind an abundance of love and legacy that any person would envy. John Shafer
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President's Corner

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Welcome to the USS Conyngham Association website. If you are a fellow shipmate or family member, I hope you’ll find this site and the association of interest. . Our association represents two ships named in honor of Revolutionary War hero Captain Gustavus Conyngham of the Continental Navy. One ship, DD-371, was commissioned in 1936 and distinguished itself in World War II naval battles in the Pacific, including Pearl Harbor in 1941. The other, DDG-17, was commissioned in 1963 and served the country during the Cold War period in various crises throughout the Middle East and other parts of the world.

Our association goals are to provide a means for Conyngham shipmates, spouses and guests to come together and reestablish old friendships and develop new ones while having a lot of fun in the process, to honor the US Navy and our fellow shipmates and to preserve the legacies of the ships for future generations.

We achieve these goals by getting together once a year in a city chosen by our members and sharing good meals, conversations, memories, embarking on area tours and attractions, and enjoying association events such as hospitality suites, theme dinners, guest speakers and a final night banquet. Our members and guests enjoy the traveling ship’s museum and ship’s store that are displayed at each reunion. The festivities typically run for four days. There are no strangers at these events. We all have a common bond that unites us. We are all shipmates regardless of when we served.

All Conyngham shipmates and spouses are invited to be members of the association and to enjoy many membership benefits, including receipt of our outstanding quarterly newsletter. We have included a sample copy of our newsletter on this website for your enjoyment.

In summary, I will just say if you want to have a great time reconnecting with old friends while making new ones, join our association and plan to attend the next reunion. I hope to see you there! Regards from a fellow shipmate,

John Burkhard

Use the "Member List" button on the left to find out if your dues are paid to date.
If you don't see your name, you are NOT paid to date.
Mail your dues in today ... Only $17.00 per year.
Make payment to "U.S.S. CONYNGHAM DD 371/DDG 17 Association".
Mail payment to our Treasurer. - See "Officers" page.


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Last Updated: 1/15/2017