Tidewater Tidal WAVES Unit # 152
News & Announcements

Unit #152 Editor: Dassa Carvey

Tidewater Tidal WAVES! Unit 152

News is in chronological order with the most current news listed first.

Sunday, May 05, 2002

Unit History - Dassa @ 12:56 pm EST

I first learned of WAVES National in the Spring of 2000, when I saw a note in Shift Colors, the Navy retirees newsletter, that WAVES National was having a convention in Cleveland, OH, that September. This is the first I'd ever heard of an organization of Navy women veterans. I contacted Barbara Turner, then Public Relations Officer for WAVES National, to learn more.

Based on emails with Barb, I decided to attend the convention and quickly sent off my membership application and dues for WAVES National. I registered for the convention, and made reservations, committing to the event before I could get cold feet and decide not to attend.

It was one of the best decisions I've ever made. Even though I didn't know a sole when I left here that September day, nearly 2 years ago, no one was a stranger. More than 600 veteran women, including 5 Royal Navy women veterans, attended the convention and shared a common bond - that of having served their country.

Jan Roy, President of WAVES National, asked me to be the official photographer and I readily agreed. I took pictures of all the events. This also gave me an opportunity to meet and get to know many of the attendees: women in wheel chairs who attended with the aid of a nurse or their spouse; women on oxygen; mothers with daughters also in the Navy; and retirees, as well as active duty women. Some of the women have become authors, having books about their experiences published.
Given the culture at the time the WAVES were first authorized, in July 1942, I have to admire the courage it took to step out against tradition and create a new tradition that has opened doors and broken down barriers for women all over the country. I find myself continually amazed by the feats of these women, and of those that followed. I am also proud, so very proud, to be counted among them.

Meeting these women in this atmosphere of togetherness and camaraderie, I felt as though a void had been filled and was amazed that no local unit existed in all of the Tidewater area. I returned home, resolving to create a local unit, so the women in the Tidewater Area can experience the camaraderie and support I found in Cleveland.

Hopefully, those that follow will feel as strongly and passionately as I do about veteran sea service women supporting each other. We need to educate the younger generation as to what their great grandmothers, grandmothers, and even their mothers, have contributed, and continue to contribute, in the defense of this Nation of ours.