Article by a USS Ranger shipmate

With shipmates like this a Commanding Officer cannot fail.




  1. Hello again Captain Nick,

    I was going to send this a couple of weeks ago but wanted to give you verification along with it. Unfortunately, I was unable to locate the article referencing ABH2 Alexander. I never did know his first name as we always called him “Tiny” on the flight deck. He is the big guy in the picture above (top of head cut off in the picture). He was really a great guy! I even managed to “run over” him one night when an A5 broke his port main. I was hook runner at the time and running over him was quite a feat as I barely came up to his shoulder. He would always fake ducking away from me from then on. I read on one of the many sites I go to that Tiny died a couple of years ago. Hope everything is going well with you. Our ranks are thinning skipper and there are many I would like to talk to one more time. One in particular is LCDR Ronald Koblitz (last known rank). He was Arresting Gear Officer for a good part of my time on board so if you happen to run across him send him my way please! You never know, I looked for you for years just never in the right place. Take care Capt. Nick

    Jim Gardner

  2. Author

    It was never difficult to see ‘Tiny’ from the bridge. He was my ‘barometer’ for judging the tempo on the flight deck. When he would throw me a thumbs up with that big grin, I knew all was well on that massive steel deck. He is sorely missed. No word on LCDR Ron Koblitz.

    1. I read this with interest after googling Ron Koblitz. He was a friend in the early 1970’s and I would love to locate him. He and my former husband were at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey. He would remember me as Susan Killam. He often joined us for camping. I would love to locate him. If anyone can help, please contact me at [email protected].

      1. Author

        Unfortunately, Suzan, we still have no word on Ron. Please let me know if you locate him. Pressing On, Capt. Nick

  3. Great article. Summed it up completely. I was stationed with Captain Nick onboard the USS Ranger. I worked CIC, on the bridge as board plotter and relay between the bridge and CIC, and Look out Supervisor. We affectionately referred to the Captain as “The Duke”. We always did look forward to his 1MC messages and to this very day, I almost always finish my comments with a “Press On”. During an ASW exercise, the Captain challenged the lookouts for a visual. I just happen to be reading Admiral Beach’s “Dust on the Sea” and applied the tactics described in the book. Sure enough, I reported seeing a scope off our starboard quarter, a helo was dispatched and a visual confirmed my sighting. Later that night, Captain Nick called me up to the bridge, shook my hand and awarded me with a weeks leave when we returned state side. It meant everything to me. I always considered Captain Nicholson as a role model. He always will be a remarkable person to me. God bless ya Captain Nick.

  4. Author

    A true shipmate, Kerry. Press on, Capt Nick.

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