USS James E. Kyes (DD-787) Association

San Diego, California - October, 2017

Where Holiday Inn Bayside Hotel.

October 18-22, 2017


Reunion Agenda


Why not?


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General Information

In October, 2017, our reunion is being held at the Holiday Inn Bayside in San Diego, Californa. At our last reunion, shipmates voted nearly unanimously to have our next reunion in San Diego. Go west young man.. and old men too.

RETURN TO THE HOME OF THE USS JAMES E. KYES. San Diego was her first home port when she was assigned to the Pacific Fleet. In October the weather is great, the tourists have returned home and we will have the best reunion ever. Don't forget to bring your pictures and sea stories. (Did our captain really think that we were a "river boat"?)

Reunite with your shipmates and share photos, cruise books, videos and stories about our great adventure on the high seas.

There will be shipmates who served on board during the Korean War and the Vietnam War and possibly even some plank owners who served in WW-II.
If you like U.S. Naval History,then this is a way to talk with your shipmates about America's
greatest generation and their contribution during World War II.

There will be a 4 foot long replica of the USS James E. Kyes as it was in 1969 during its service in the Gulf of Tonkin, Vietnam.

Join Kyes shipmates who were on board on June 3, 1969, the day that Kyes shipmates witnessed
the aftermath of the tragic sinking of the USS Frank E. Evans (DD-754).
We will have a memorial service dedicated to the lost 74. Rick Warden will bring the flag that he rescued from the Evans on that day.

There will be fun activities and games with prizes.

There will be a 50/50 raffle and many more raffle items.

Bring lots of $5.00 bills for the 50/50 because Dave MacMorran is coming and he wants your money.

If you were aboard the Kyes during the years of 1966-1969, you may have been exposed to Agent Orange. Kathy Lasorda is a great advocate for USS James E. Kyes shipmates and has been personally responsible for getting the Kyes on the Brown Water Navy list. She will be at the reunion.

Tours and Events

The Famous San Diego Zoo

The San Diego Zoo houses over 3700 animals of more than 650 species and subspecies. It is one of the few zoos in the world tha thouse ans successfull breeds the giant panda. 2017 will see the opening of "Africa Rocks".

USS Midway (CVA-41)

The USS Midway Museum is an unforgettable adventure for the entire family. Guests can spend the day exploring more than 60 exhibits with a collection of 29 restored aircraft. The self-guided audio tour, narrated by Midway sailors, brings the carrier's history to life. Those who dare can "take to the sky" aboard one of two flight simulators.

Naval Memorials at Rosecrans National Cemetary

This is a "must attend event" for Tin Can Sailors.

We will hold a memorial service with an honor guard on the cemetery grounds.

Several monuments have been erected in memory of the sailors lost in the Battle off Samar, October 25, 1944, a part of the Battle of Leyte Gulf (Philippines), and in subsequent battles of the Pacific:

The USS St. Lo (CVE-63) and Composite Squadron VC-65 was erected in 1994.

The USS Hoel (DD-533), USS Johnston (DD-557) and USS Samuel B. Roberts (DE-413) monument is a large granite memorial dedicated in 1995.

The granite Taffy 3 monument was dedicated on October 24, 1996.

The granite USS Gambier Bay (CVE-73) monument was dedicated on October 25, 1996. Family members and survivors donated the monument.

Old Town San Diego

OLD TOWN is the historic heart of San Diego. Created in 1769, Old Town San Diego was California’s first settlement with only a mission and a fort.

Old Town Trolley tours will pick you up and drop you off at the hotel.

Hotel Reservations

The association has negotiated a group rate of $129.00 per night. Our group code is USK and our group rates are valid for booking through 9/27/17, so you must book your reservations by that date.

Click here USS James E Kyes Reunion Room Reservations to proceed directly to the reservation desk. The group rate is available for three days pre and post event based on room availability via the provided link or contact hotel reservations directly at Holiday Inn San Diego Bayside.

Call 1(619) 224-3621, ask for reservations (Ext: 701) or call toll free (in USA only) 1(800) 662-8899.

Shipmates and guests need to input your arrival and departure dates which need to fall with-in the group contract dates (+/- 3 days) and click "Check Availability" to go to the group's specific rate and availability page. From there you will select a room type that they prefer and input your personal details to complete the reservation (please scroll down to see all available room types).

Shipmates and guests may also use your IHG Rewards number with the group rate.

Sunny San Diego at the Holiday Inn

The Holiday Inn San Diego Bayside is well known in San Diego as the "Reunion Experts", having been named as one of the "Top 10 Places to Hold a Reunion", by USA Today! The hotel hosts over 30 reunions each year!

Our reunion planners tell us that the combination of our reputation of providing exactly what we promised, and our great reunion package, is what attracted them to our hotel in the 1st place! The complimentary Hospitality Room that is provided (if the group has a minimum of 20 rooms peak night), is most important to them, as that is where the group gathers to spend a lion's share of their time together to share memories, and renew their special bonds that forever tie them together!

Since a majority of the reunion groups are interested in keeping their reunions affordable to all, our military reunion groups are allowed to bring in their own refreshments including beer, soft drinks and liquor, plus light snacks, into the hospitality room. The hotel supplies the tables, chairs, roll-in bar, ice, etc!

Our groups always comment on the fabulous catered food that the hotel provides for their welcome buffets, ladies lunches, banquet dinners, and farewell breakfasts! We receive high marks on the reasonable pricing, and variety of choices. They are all pleased that any special dietary concerns are handled with ease.

The staff and management recognizes the sacrifices that our Servicemen and women have given for our country, and as a token of appreciation, the daily Parking Fee is waived, as well as any Audio Visual fees for their keynote speakers, and hospitality room needs. The reunion groups also really appreciate our complimentary 24-hour Airport/Amtrak Shuttle! A complimentary shuttle can be arranged, in advance, to local shopping, Balboa Park, and the San Diego Zoo, which really helps keep the spouses happy!

Year after year, guests repeat their reunions at Holiday Inn Bayside for the excellent bay views and central location, the reasonable group rates and menu prices; and the personalized attention from our caring staff. The hotel can accommodate up to 250 guests for indoor banquets and up to 200 guests on our tropically landscaped poolside deck.

Ordering and Costs

We will be mailing a form to fill out for the reunion to choose which events and dinner items you will want, plus the number of guests.
Please send an email, call or fill out the RSVP form if you are wanting to attend so we can mail you the form.

We will not know the costs for shipmates and guests until we firm up the itinerary and decide on how many events will be bussed and what will be the costs to the association. The association does not collect dues to organize these reunions therefore it is necessary that we ask shipmates and guests to cover our costs. It has been advised by some on the committee that there is so much to see in San Diego that it may be advisable to let shipmates and guests create their own itinerary.

Our Banquet event this year will have a Hawaiian theme, so bring your Hawaiian shirts. We will be enjoying the HAWAIIAN LUAU BUFFET on the Bayside Bar Patio. Every shipmate who served aboard the Kyes has been to Pearl Harbor. It has now been 75 years since the great "Day of Infamy". CDR Stevens answered the call on that day to defend our country and he flew nearly every kind of plane in the U.S. Navy during WW-II. Help us honor him and his service.

Some advice from John Armstrong

John Armstrong (BT2, On board Kyes 1958-1962) lives in San Diego.
He was aboard many ships and has been to several San Diego reunions. John has been a valuable advisor for our upcoming reunion.
He offers his advice for visitors:
  • 1. Take in the Embarcadero which includes:
    • (a) USS Midway.
    • (b) Sea Port Village, which has souvenir shops & restaurants.
    • (c) Star of India & Russian Submarine.
    • (d) Take the 2 hour harbor cruise not the one hour cruise. The two hour cruise goes down by the Naval Station and out to Point Loma.The one hour cruise only goes out to Point Loma.

  • 2. Take the Old Town Trolley tour which is a good overview of San Diego and also goes out to Coronado. It's about 2 hours and you can get on and off. There's stops for it all over the city. Not sure if there's a stop near the hotel or not. However, I find the best place to catch it is at the Old Town State History Park because of the free parking and that's where the main station is.

  • 3. Almost impossible to get a tour of the bases since 9/11. Best bet is if the driver has a military I.D. they can get on the bases without any problem and have non-military personnel in the car with them. The Navy no longer requires decals, just an I.D. Note: The tin can sailors always got to tour a ship during the West Coast Bull Session but "no more".

  • 4. Old Town State History Park. It's free and parking is free. Besides the historical stuff there's also souvenir shops & restaurants.

  • 5. I do have a favorite restaurant to eat breakfast at if folks get tired of the hotel food. The Breakfast Restaurant that I like which is located near "Old Town is: Perry's Café 4620 Pacific Highway San Diego, CA 92110 I think they close about 1400 (2:00 pm) and there's lots of parking. It's been awhile since I ate there but most folks like it.
  • 6. MCRD has a museum but I've never been to it and there's a museum out at Miramar which has a gate that does not require an ID to enter.

Contact Us

If you have questions about the upcoming reunion, don't hesitate to email or call us.

Roger Donnay, Secretary

Rick Warden, President

Reunion Comittee:

David MacMorran
Roger Donnay
Rick Warden
Montie Ocha
Dan Dale
Bill Golden
Darwin Sietsema
The above committee members were chosen at the last reunion to represent USS JEK shipmates and to choose the next reunion location and dates. We voted and decided that San Diego, California is an ideal location for a reunion because it has great naval history and was once the home port of the USS James E. Kyes.
More information will be posted here as it becomes available.