Petitioner Wilder Guerra made the following comment in a complaint at GoPetition (Nov 14, 2015):
"The USS Decatur (DDG-73) was commissioned in 1998. Since it's start of service, the enlisted crew mess decks has displayed the names and dates of all enlisted personnel that have qualified for their Enlisted Surface Warfare Specialist breast insignia as they earn the award onboard. The display plaques were on the mess decks and the bulkhead on the port side of the mess decks p-way well into 2015.
During the September and October time frame, the crew mess decks were renovated. Mainly just the seating arrangements, but no bulkheads were altered.
The ESWS qualifiers displays, which include the plankowners, were alive and well in the mess decks and port p-way up until the mess decks were closed for the seating upgrade. Upon opening the mess decks in October, the ESWS qualifier boards were not returned to the mess decks area. For weeks, the original displays are "nowhere to be found". The bulkhead space is definitely available, so the only possible reason to have the displays taken down was for somebody's personal preference. A new board was put up on the port p-way on the galley bulkhead with qualifiers of 2015 only.
There are many Decatur veterans that put a lot of time into gaining their qualification, and having that living ship's history going back to it's commissioning crew mysteriously disappearing after a mess decks seating upgrade is sketchy. There are a few DDG-73 veterans whose names were still on those displays, and they have since passed away. Even though they have passed away, they will always be a part of the ship.
Commemorating the dedication of those fallen sailors on those ESWS plaques won't distract or deter any mission Decatur will be assigned for the remainder of her service."
Guerra petitioned as follows:
"This petition is to the current commanding officer and command master chief of the USS Decatur (DDG-73) to please return the display of the ESWS qualifiers which is part of the ship's history.
Each enlisted member that worked hard to earn their pin onboard DDG-73 should continue to be commemorated especially because; there is still more than enough bulkhead space, and that display is to honor the DDG-73 veterans that will always be an integral part of Decatur's life cycle.
Please don't dismiss the hard work of the enlisted crew that made Decatur a successful and dominant ship on the waterfront throughout it's current service in the Navy.
Anybody that served onboard Decatur and earned your ESWS, any Decatur crew member that signed off on an ESWS PQS, any family member of a sailor that served onboard Decatur and earned the breast insignia, or anyone that still believes in the hard work of the enlisted personnel and that it should be commemorated onboard a vessel as a tribute for their involvement in a vessel's service life is more than welcome to not only sign this petition but pass along the word to return the ESWS qualifier plaques onboard DDG-73."
A positive report was recently received from him:
"Shipmates, Family and Friends, Happy Turkey Day and Thanksgiving.
I have excellent news. Our collective voice and request did not get turned down by the command. The boards are back on display on the Port P-Way. Both are filled to the brim. The board with the 2015 qualifiers is on the same p-way, but on the bulkhead adjacent the galley. I go onboard almost every week provided the ship isn't underway.
If you want a pic of your placard or your family/friend placard, message (www.facebook.com/goldenshellback25) me with the approximate date you earned your pin. I'll send the picture to you.
Have a great Holiday Season and a prosperous New Year."