A Midway shipmate and good friend passed this morning. Master Chief Mess Management Specialist Gary Dewitt is pictured on the right. During his three years as the MS Detailer, he affected the lives of thousands of Navy cooks.

Shipmate… I wish for you fair winds and following seas, deep green water under your bow, your main rifles trained in the posture of peace and a gentle breeze at your stern.


Papers tell their life stories

When politicians leave this earth,

Their bodies lie in state,

While thousands note their passing,

And proclaim that they were great.

From the time that they were young,

But the passing of a Sailor

Goes unnoticed, and unsung.

Is the greatest contribution

To the welfare of our land,

Some jerk who breaks his promise

And cons his fellow man?

Or the ordinary fellow

Who in times of war and strife,

Goes off to serve his country

And offers up his life?

The politician’s stipend

And the style in which he lives,

Are often disproportionate,

To the service that he gives.

While the ordinary Sailor,

Who offered up his all,

Is paid off with a medal

And perhaps a pension, small.

It is not the politicians

With their compromise and ploys,

Who won for us the freedom

That our country now enjoys.

Should you find yourself in danger,

With your enemies at hand,

Would you really want some cop-out,

With his ever waffling stand?

Or would you want a Sailor

His home, his country, his kin,

Just a common Sailor,

Who would fight until the end.

He was just a common Sailor,

And his ranks are growing thin,

But his presence should remind us

We may need his likes again.

For when countries are in conflict,

We find the Sailor’s part,

Is to clean up all the troubles

That the politicians start.

If we cannot do him honor

While he’s here to hear the praise,

Then, at least, let’s give him homage

At the ending of his days.

Perhaps just a simple headline

In the paper that might say:




7 thoughts on “A SAILOR DIED TODAY

  1. Jon M. Lodi says:

    Master Chief Dewitt assisted me, as many others, in staying in the Navy. He got
    me duty in PI, so I shipped over, and stayed in for 27 years. He was a honest detailer, not like some others. RIP Shipmate. …..MSCM J.M. Lodi, MSCM,USN Ret.


  2. MSCS(AW) Mick Hersey says:

    I was stationed with Gary on the Midway in the 1980s. He then assisted me with orders to better my Naval career. I know God needed a good cook and brought you home. May your family remember all the good Memories 🙏🙏🙏


  3. Boyce “Tim” TIMOTHY says:

    Apparently the Goat Locker lost a good man, brother, and fellow Chief. RIP…we have the watch for now. Chief


  4. OSC(SW) Henry B. Pickard USN Ret. says:

    He was my CMC onboard the USS MOOSBRUGGER
    He was there to pin my very first Anchors and make sure my Hat was on square.
    I truly learned about so very much from him.
    He was, is and Always
    will be a Shipmate!


  5. BTCS Sahr says:

    I was on Midway and Cochrane with then MSCS Dewitt. Didn’t he own the Missouri Bar on Gordon Avenue in Subic?
    I’ll always remember him and I waiting to catch hell over the passageway aft of the messdecks almost daily during XO’s inspection. He had the forward 1/2 by the scullery, and aft fireroom had the aft 1/2. We NEVER passed!
    Great guy and fantastic shipmate – he used to call me up before SRA’s in Yoko and ask how much coffee, sugar and creamer I needed for cumshaw at the Yard.
    Rest in peace Stewburner.


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