RICHMOND (KRON)—A time-honored tradition of Fleet Week is the Parade of Ships entering San Francisco Bay, but one Bay Area ship was notably absent.
While the World War II vessel Red Oak Victory remained docked in Richmond, those who have kept its legacy alive were not to be denied a place in fleet week celebrations.
“Fleet week the current military and there fulfilling the twenty sixteen missions just like these ships fulfilled the nineteen forty four missions and we do want to make sure that the history is not being lost as well as its relevance to the present, so Fleet Week is the ideal time to do it,” said Johannes Hoech, director of ship operations.
With historical reenactors manning the guns and the captain keeping watch on the bridge, they held a celebration of their own to honor the ship and the contribution that Bay Area ship building made to the country’s naval supremacy of the war.
“This is the town that invented the future, this is the place where we pioneered modern manufacturing methods, we pioneered modern race relations, modern management relations, the women’s movement got a shot in the arm,” Hoech said.
That movement was alive and present as the living legends of those women who worked at those ship yards joined the celebration.
“It just brings us back to the forties when we all worked at the shipyards,” said Catherine Morrison, who is an original Rosie the Riveter.
“We all feel patriotic especially on Fleet Week when all the sailors come in and everything,” said Marion Sousa who is also an original Rosie the Riveter.
Those working to restore the Red Oak Victory are working to make the ship operational so it may have it’s place in fleet week’s Parade of Ships.
“Someday we hope to be at the head of that parade,” Hoesch said.