​​​Phone: 1.207.751.3513

Email:  fra.branch.182@gmail.com



Harley J. Higgins USN (Ret)
March 18, 1922 - May 8, 2020

Shipmate Higgins was a FRA Member of 27 years. Originally from Wisconsin, he joined the Navy and was stationed at numerous locations but always considered Maryland home residing in Montgomery County for 52 years. After retiring from the Navy, he remained active in communications; enjoyed several bowling leagues; and spent hours researching genealogy.

A memorial service will be held at a later date. Please sign the guest book at www.DeVolfuneralhome.com 

For his full obituary please see the link below:

Navy Memorial’s Navy Log:

Chief Petty Officer
Vernell Bishop, Jr USN (Ret)
October 18, 1925 - January 2, 2020

Shipmate Bishop was a FRA Life Member of 45 years.  Vernell joined the Navy in 1942 serving as a Machinist Mate and retired 25 years later in 1967.

For his full obituary please see the link below:
Navy Memorial’s Navy Log:


In Remembrance

The Two Bell Ceremony. When executed properly, the Fleet Reserve Association’s “Two-Bell Ceremony” is dramatic testimony to humility, dignity, reverence and honor. It fulfills the promise of our preamble – “our reverence for the memory of our departed shipmates.”

Unfortunately, there is no written documentation or knowledge that clearly identifies the origin of this beloved ritual except that it is unique and ours alone. In researching naval history back to the time of Britain’s Lord Nelson we can find no record of a memorial ceremony using the ship’s bell. Our current elder statesmen credit several deceased shipmates as being largely responsible for the originating and refinement of the ritual. But it is clear the sounding of two bells is the “time,” or the “moment,” to pause and reflect on our shipmates who are now serving on the staff of the Supreme Commander.

In days past, “two bells” marked the end of the routine day aboard ship. It was time for “Tattoo” and soon “Taps” would sound throughout the ship. Certainly, this is a most appropriate time to honor our departed shipmates.

Those familiar with one of the greatest stories of the sea, “The Ancient Mariner,” will remember that he/she found safe passage in narrow waters by listening to the bell on the marking buoy. That bobbing marking buoy sounds much like the tolling of a bell for a funeral dirge, solemn, reverent and mournful.

Since the beginning of recorded time, men of the sea have been guided and impressed by the sounding of the ship’s bell. In our “Two Bell Ceremony,” the tolling of the bell and the spoken word can and should be combined to execute a ritual that contributes to and strengthens the bond that exists amongst all shipmates of the Fleet Reserve Association.

First Class Petty Officer
John A. Wooditch USN (Ret)
April 3, 1926 - May 9, 2020

Shipmate Wooditch was a FRA Member of 49 years. He grew up in Swoyersville, Pennsylvania and graduated from Swoyersville High School.
Upon graduation, he joined the military where he served with the US Marines for a short time, then the US Navy as a Medical Corpsman, proudly serving his country for nearly twenty-one years. After retiring from active duty, he returned as a civilian to Bethesda National Naval Medical Center and worked in the Purchasing Department as a Supervisory Purchasing Agent, until his retirement.

In light of the current social restrictions and when future conditions permit all relatives and friends to gather, there will be a Memorial Mass with Military Honors at St. Mary’s Church, followed by a celebration of our father’s life.

For his full obituary please see the link below:

Navy Memorial’s Navy Log:

Chief Petty Officer
Edwin A. "Ed" Coffin USN (Ret)
June 30, 1933 - January 15, 2020

Shipmate Coffin was a FRA Member of  35 years.  He was a veteran of the United States Navy, achieving the rank of Chief Petty Officer, having served during the Korean and Vietnam conflicts. Shipmate Coffin was maintenance supervisor with the Frederick County Public School system, retiring in 1998. He enjoyed woodworking, carpentry and was a Master Carpenter.

For his full obituary please see the link below:
Navy Memorial’s Navy Log:

Two Bell Ceremony in remembrance of those
Shipmates that have received orders to serve

on the Staff of the Supreme Commander.

Shipmate Vernell Bishop, Jr. 

Shipmate Edwin A. Coffin

Shipmate Floyd W Goddard

Shipmate Harley J. Higgins

Shipmate John A. Wooditch​



Please remember our troops overseas in
Iraq and Afghanistan.

Chief Petty Officer
Floyd W Goddard, USN (Ret)
July 10, 1930 - February 20, 2020

Shipmate Goddard was a FRA Member of 47 years. A Retired Chief Navy Corpsman with over 20 years enlisted on 3 Naval ships and Korean War Active Duty with Marines Corps. Military duty brought him and his family from Boston to Florida in 1965. After Navy retirement Floyd spent most of his working career at Jess Parrish Memorial Hospital, specialized in hematology and chemistry eventually leading the laboratory department until retiring in 1988.

For his full obituary please see the link below:

To report a passing of a Shipmate please Contact Us .


"Staff of The Supreme Commander"