Journal Entry  -  October 17, 1999  -  Day 36

Sunday Noon Position Report
12:00 p.m., Central Daylight Time

8 Degrees, 56 Minutes North


79 Degrees, 34 Minutes West

Days Run:

At Anchor at Balboa Port Terminal, Panama


At Anchor at Balboa Port Terminal, Panama

Distance Of Second Leg:   September 21 - October 15 / Long Beach, CA to Balboa Anchorage, Panama: 2,948.7 Nautical Miles, the longest leg of New Jersey's homecoming voyage.
Total Average Speed Second Leg:  5.18 Knots

Distance Of First Leg:  September 12 - 21 / Bremerton, WA to Long Beach, CA: 1,193.6 Nautical Miles from the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard to Long Beach, CA anchorage.
Total Average Speed First Leg:  5.54 Knots

Position:  The USS New Jersey remains docked at the Balboa Port Terminal, piers 14 - 15 with the Sea Victory, bow to bow.

Sixth Home Coming Week Begins With Grand Panama Welcome

At 9:32 a.m. Saturday morning, the USS New Jersey passed beneath Balboa, Panama's Bridge of the Americas, and the Battleship has been the subject of everyone's conversations ever since.

From Panama City taxi drivers, to hotel employees to the more than 200 New Jersey and U.S. visitors who have come to see New Jersey's presence in the Canal, the talk has been of her past, her present and her future.

Governor Christie Whitman last evening hosted a welcoming reception for the large group of Battleship supporters from New Jersey and across the nation at a downtown Panama City hotel.  The Governor thanked all those who have made New Jersey's transit home a reality, and the people present returned her salute to them with acknowledgement of the Governor's executive and personal role of support.

The 200-plus visitors represented the A-to-Z list of critical individuals, corporations and institutions playing instrumental roles in achieving the state of New Jersey's success in this effort.  News media representatives from New Jersey and national gateway reporting services added to the flavor of excitement, optimism and achievement.

The evening's reception was filled with the anticipation of New Jersey's passage through the Canal's three famed Locks beginning tomorrow morning.   Many on hand last night will be eye witnesses to history, as they assemble to watch and join the Battleship's initial transit northward through the Canal Monday morning.

Last evening's gathering followed a morning of easy passage from the Bay of Panama into her berthing at Piers 14-15 in Balboa. The Panamanian assist tugs "Breedbank" and Hoeksbank" were later joined by their tugs "Gilbert" and "Guardia" to help Sea Victory slowly position USS New Jersey into her berth where Panamanians and New Jerseyans stood on the dock with cameras, eyes wide open, and hearts filled with the joy of her presence.

This afternoon, Governor Whitman will be joined by a representatives of the U.S. Navy, the Navy's Ship Donation Program, the New Jersey state Department of Military and Veterans Affairs, and the Panama Canal Commission in a dockside presentation of the battleship's importance at this juncture to the Panama Canal's transition to independence.

The presentation will also underscore the USS New Jersey's historic and valuable meaning to New Jersey, the nation's naval history, past and present, and the thousands of Jerseymen whom she represents.  The hours here in Panama City, Balboa and dockside at piers 14 and 15 are filled with New Jersey's presence.   The tributes continue.

Submitted by Bob Wernet onboard the Sea Victory.


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