submitted by Gregory K. LaCoy, Proud Son of a Submarine Veteran
My father, Marvin Hodges LaCoy, CS1(SS),
passed away on 10/April/1978 due to injuries received in a traffic
During his 25 years in the Navy he served aboard the USS Swordfish SSN-579, USS TUNNY SS-282, USS Perch APSS-313, USS Kamehameha SSBN-642(Gold) and retired off the USS Henry Clay SSBN-625(Blue) in 1973.
My father and mother divorced when I was very young so I never had the chance to know him, but I do know he loved the Navy - he loved cooking for the men and he was a sailor to the core! They used to call him "Pappy" because he was one of the oldest enlisted men still in the boats and he loved the nickname!
I'm sure he touched many a mans lives while he was part of the Silent Service, and even though I never really knew him, he touched mine!
Addendum below from Greg McCoy as posted on Bottom Gun BBS: 10/10/2001
Got a phone call from an old shipmate of dad's from the Henry Clay last night and I gotta tell you, it made my year! His name is LeRoy Francis and dad used to call him "Franny". He did 4 patrols with dad and Pappy made quite an impression on him. Dad took him under his tattooed wing and taught him almost everything he knew about cooking.
Said dad was the BEST baker in the boats. Told me dad used to have him shut off the AC just so the smell of his fresh baked bread or sticky buns would drift throughout the boat and in less than 15 minutes, the mess hall was full of shipmates. He asked dad one time what his secret was for baking bread and told him if he told him he'd have to kill him!
Told me about a time when a bunch of them went to a club and they wouldn't serve them because Franny was black. My old man told the club owner that if he didn't serve Franny, he'd see to it no more submariners ever drank there again. The club almost went outta business. Franny said THAT was my dad, a shipmate to the core! Dad didn't see color, he saw shipmates! On one patrol, Franny got word his wife had gotten real sick and there was nothing he could do about it. Dad took him aside and talked to him and helped him through his crisis. Franny said that while some of the other mess cooks treated him like a slave, dad never did. He was a NQP, but dad helped him with his quals.
He told me dad used to do this this thing with cracking 4 eggs in each hand and he's never seen anything like it before or since. I envy Franny, he saw my dad in ways I would have loved to see but it wasn't meant to be. He is proud to have know my dad and wishes he were still alive today so he could tell him thanks for helping him become a man!
Just wanted to share this with you all cause you've accepted this son of a sea cook as your own. This man saw my Eternal Patrol post on the Henry Clay website and rather than send me an e-mail, he took the time to call and talk to Pappys son personally.
Like I said, made my year!!!
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