Louis R. Perry – WWII & Korea

The country’s pandemic lockdown kept me out of Florida for almost two years. When I returned to Missouri, I carried a van loaded with old film, prints, clips and other journalistic detritus.

Along with my stuff, Wife Lila packed a box of Perry family photos for Sister Marty. A special selection of photos will go to Brother John for his “military trunk.”

This short newspaper brief tells about all I know right now about Lila’s Uncle Louis R. Perry, who served in the Navy during World War II and the Korean War. He was awarded the Bronze Star for meritorious service during the Korean campaign.

Watching Louis grow up

You can see Louis grow up from a somewhat skinny young man to a mature sailor. Click on any photo to make it larger, then use the arrow keys to move around.

The USS Rochester (CA-124)

Louis spent a good portion of his service aboard the USS Rochester, an Oregon City-class heavy cruiser that was launched in 1945.

On Sept. 13, 1950, The Rochester provided support for the troops landing on Inchon. On Sept. 17, two Korean aircraft that were mistakenly thought to be friendly, dropped four bombs on the ship. Three of them missed, and the fourth smashed the ship’s crane, but failed to detonate. 

There were no American casualties, but the crew painted a Purple Heart on the crane.

The vessel was refitted several times during her life, but she was eventually scrapped in 1974.

Perry family has history of service

Going-away party for Wyatt Perry 07-14-2012

I made this photo at a going-away party when Wyatt Perry, John and Dee’s son, was shipping out for the marines. 

Left to right: Laurie Perry Everett, Drew Perry, Wyatt Perry, John F. Perry, Rocky Everett.

John Perry was Navy and served in Vietnam. Drew just finished up his enlistment in the Marines.

Laurie Perry Everett, joined the Army, where the diminutive blonde became a Military Police officer. She was stationed in Kitzingen, Germany, but she either visited or was deployed in France, Spain, Italy, the Czech Republic, Romania, Israel, Bosnia, Croatia, Greece and Switzerland, among others.

One of her jobs was processing new troops, explaining the local customs and making them aware of what they needed to know. One soldier, Rocky Everett, commented to his buddy, “I’m going to date that girl one day.”

International Turtle Day

Note on Mary Steinhoff's water heater 03-23-2016I went into the Buchheit Store between Cape and Jackson looking for a hot water heater for Mother’s house. It’s been banging and clanging for years, but I think the tank is so filled with sediment that there’s no room for water. Missouri cold water is a lot colder that Florida cold water, as I found out in the shower the other morning.

On the side of the tank, in my handwriting, was a note, “6/19/87.”

I called Wife Lila’s brother, John Perry, who had installed it, and said, “John, you told me that this thing had a lifetime warranty.”

“Well,” he said, “When I told you that, I never thought you’d live this long.”

But, that’s not really the point of the story.

“Your hat has a turtle on it”

KLS selfie 03-23-2016The young gal at the customer service desk bagging fresh popcorn looked up when I asked where the hot water tanks live and said, “Today is International Turtle Day, and you are wearing a cap with a turtle on it.”

Indeed, I was. It’s the logo for the real estate company Kid Matt works for down in Jupiter, Florida.

(P.S. Kid, the hat is looking a little bedraggled, certainly not the image that a high-end real estate company would want to project. Maybe it’s time for a new one.)

“Easy content,” I thought. I’ll look up a few factoids about International Turtle Day, grab a few file photos I’ve run of turtles and turn in early.

Alas, it WASN’T International Turtle Day

Turtle and Dog 1966March 23 ISN’T International Turtle Day. It’s been May 23 since it was started in 2000 by American Tortoise Rescue. To add to the confusion, I’ve seen it as both World Turtle Day and International Turtle Day.

The puppy and I have the same expression.

Well, at least the gal was right about where the hot water heaters were.

Too Pooped to Post

Matt - Mark Steinhoff KY Lake c 1982Brother-in-Law John and I spent a whole day validating the Rule of Threes: every project will cost three times as much as anticipated, require three times as long as planned, and will take at least three trips to any place you plan to buy parts. Actually, I’m pretty sure we were into the Rule of Sixes and Nines on a couple of items.

I’m too tired to tell the whole story tonight, but I’ll give you a hint that it involves something in this photo.

Watered-Down Anheuser-Busch

Anheuser-Busch water for 1993 flood 11-08-2015I’m a disgrace to my German heritage. I have to confess I went years not liking the taste of beer. Then, one hot summer, Brother-in-Law John Perry came down to Florida to help us re-roof the house.

Well, to be more accurate, he did most of the work when he wasn’t answering dumb questions from The Boys and me. (Sample: “These nails have the heads on the wrong end.” “Just put them back in your pouch and use them on the other side of the roof.”)

At the end of the day, I took a shine to the Bud Light I was quaffing with John. Nowadays, I usually have a bottle with dinner at least three nights a week.

My friends make fun of me for drinking Bud Light, but I counter by saying, “I’m not really crazy about beer, and Bud Light is the closest thing you can get to Not Beer that still has a little of the taste of beer.

In 1993, the folks at Anheuser-Busch came up with something that might be a little light even for my taste. They switched over one of their lines in Ft. Collins, Colorado, to produce cans of drinking water for folks fighting the Flood of 1993.

Use by 10/15/1993

Anheuser-Busch water for 1993 flood 11-08-2015Wife Lila and Foodie Road Warriorette Jan are always giving me grief about how long I keep food past the theoretical expiration date. I wonder if they’d object if I cracked the can and took a swig of 1993 water? The can’s full and shows no signs of leakage.

Canned water outlasted Dutchtown

Dutchtown buyout demolition 10-18-2015Ronald Kucera Jr. of Kucera Demolition reduces a Dutchtown house to landfill material. Eleven of 15 houses eligible for a buyout have been marked for demolition after residents got tired of more and more frequent “100-year” floods.

Not-so-fond memories

93 Dutchtown Flood Mark Steinhoff inside Mech ShedBrother Mark and I have some not-so-fond memories of the Flood of 1993, when we were surveying the height of the water inside one of the buildings Dad used for his construction company. We were barely able to get the canoe under the top of the door.