Charles E. Vreeland

Cortesy of DANFS Online

Charles E. Vreeland-born on 10 March 1852 at Newark N.J.-enlisted in the Navy as a naval apprentice early in 1866. After brief service in Sabine, he received a Presidential appointment as a midshipman at the Naval Academy on 27 July 1866. On 7 June 1870, he graduated from the academy as a passed midshipman and, at the end of July, reported on board the newly commissioned screw sloop California. On 28 September, he was detached from that ship and was ordered to proceed in Severn to duty in the screw sloop Congress, then cruising in the South Atlantic. He was later transferred to the screw sloop Brooklyn and, between 1871 and 1873, made a cruise in her to European waters. In July 1873, he was detached from Brooklyn. After successfully completing the required post-sea duty examination in October, he returned to sea in November in Powhatan and, less than a fortnight later, received his commission as an ensign.

Successive tours of duty in Alert, Ashuelot, and Ticonderoga followed; and, during that period, Vreeland received promotions to master and then to lieutenant. In November 1881, after a period ashore awaiting orders, he was posted to the Nautical Almanac Office, where charts and tables were prepared for use by naval officers in celestial navigation. In March 1884, Lt. Vreeland began a three-year tour at sea in Hartford, at the completion of which he went to the Bureau of Navigation for a two-year assignment. Upon leaving that duty in mid-April 1889, he took torpedo instruction at Newport, R.I. Then, a brief assignment with the Office of Naval Intelligence from July to September of 1889 preceded his reporting to the Coast Survey late in Oetober. That employment lasted until the spring of 1893 when orders sent Vreeland to Europe as naval attache-first at Rome, then at Vienna, and finally in Berlin.

Lt. Vreeland returned home late in 1896, was posted to Massachusetts in mid-January 1897, and served in that battleship until transferred to Helena at the end of June. Vreeland was ordered to Dolphin as executive officer in April 1898, but he did not actually assume those duties until 24 August. Thus, he served in Helena through most of the brief Spanish-American War on blockade duty off Cuba until July. He was detached from Dolphin on 6 November 1898 and ordered to Olympia; however, those orders were changed in December, and he reported to Concord instead on the 30th. In March 1899, he became Lt. Comdr. Vreeland, and after completing assignments in Concord, Monterey, and Baltimore-all on the Asiatic station-he returned home on board the hospital ship Solace in March 1900. In April, he became a member of the Board of Inspection and Survey; and, during that assignment, he was promoted to full commander in mid-August 1901. In August 1902, he took charge of fitting out of the "New Navy" monitor Arkansas (later to be renamed Ozark) at Newport News, Va. When she was placed in commission on 28 October, he assumed command.

Two years later, Vreeland left his first command, Arkansas, and served ashore over the next two and one-half years, performing various special duties for the Navy Department. Initially, he was a member of and recorder for the board studying proposed changes to the New York Navy Yard. He was next assigned special duty in the Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Navy. While assigned to the Navy Department in Washington, Vreeland received his promotion to captain to date from 13 April 1906. Capt. Vreeland concluded that latest assignment in Washington on 17 April 1907 and, the following day, placed Kansas (Battleship No. 21) in commission at Camden, N.J. He commanded the new battleship for the next two years-a very auspicious time for it coincided with the cruise of the "Great White Fleet" around the world. Soon after the Fleet returned to Hampton Roads in February 1909, he relinquished command of Kansas and returned home to await orders. On 10 May, Capt. Vreeland took over command of the Offlce of Naval Intelligence. That duty lasted until 8 December 1909 when, with his selection for promotion to rear admiral imminent, he broke his flag in Virginia (Battleship No. 13) as Commander, 4th Division, Atlantic Fleet. Nineteen days later, on the 27th, he became Rear Admiral Vreeland.

On 19 April 1911, he reported ashore for further duty in Washington. In his new assignment as Aide for Inspections, he approached the pinnacle of naval command. He became one of the four principal advisors of the Secretary of the Navy, George von L. Meyer, under the newly devised aide system for managing the Navy. During his tenure in that office, Rear Admiral Vreeland represented the Navy Department at the coronation of King George V of England and headed up the so-called "Vreeland Board" which reinvestigated the Maine disaster of 1898. The controversial report of that board-now considered erroneous-concluded that an external explosion sank the warship

On 12 December, Rear Admiral Vreeland ended his tour of duty as Aide for Inspections and succeeded Rear Admiral Richard Wainwright as the Secretary's second Aide for Operations. While in that position-the forerunner to today's office of Chief of Naval Operations-Vreeland struggled to improve the defenses in the Philippines, agitated for increased naval construction, particularly of battle cruisers, and supported the development of American naval aviation. During his tenure as Aide for Operations, naval aviation found a permanent home at Pensacola, Fla. On 11 February 1913, Rear Admiral Vreeland relinquished his duties as Aide for Operations to Rear Admiral Bradley A. Fiske, the third and last man to hold the office under that title. Vreeland finished out his naval career as a member of both the General and Joint Boards. On 10 March 1914, he was transferred to the retired list. On 27 September 1916, after a retirement plagued by illness, Rear Admiral Vreeland died at Atlantic City, N.J.


Vreeland (DE-1068) was laid down on 20 March 1968 by the Avondale Shipyard at Westwego, La.; launched on 14 June 1969; sponsored by Mrs. Jamie L. Whitten, wife of the Congressman representing Mississippi's 2d Congressional District, and commissioned at Charleston, S.C., on 13 June 1970, Comdr. David R. Stefferud in command.

After fitting out at Charleston and shakedown training in the West Indies, Vreeland returned to Charleston to join Destroyer Squadron (DesRon) 4. She completed repairs in February 1971 and final contract trials in March and then began preparations for her first deployment to the Mediterranean area. The warship departed Charleston on 15 April and arrived in Rota, Spain, on the 25th. During the next six months she steamed the length and breadth of the "middle sea' as a unit of the 6th Fleet. She visited numerous ports and participated in a host of exercises with American and Allied naval forces. She concluded that tour of duty at Gibraltar on 8 October when she changed operational control back to the 2d Fleet and headed home. The warship arrived in Charleston on the 16th and resumed 2d Fleet operations out of Charleston.

The Greek Years

In the summer of 1972, the ship began preparations for another cruise in the Mediterranean Sea. That deployment, however, proved different than the previous one. Rather than deploying for six months and then returning home to Charleston, Vreeland received orders changing her home port to Athens, Greece. That assignment lasted for the next three years rather than the normal six months and included the relocation of Vreeland dependents to Athens-all as a part of the Navy's forward deployment program. During those three years, she performed the normal duties of a unit of the 6th Fleet, visiting ports, conducting exercises, and performing surveillance of Soviet ships operating in the Mediterranean.

On 1 July 1976, Vreeland was reclassified a frigate and redesignated FF-1068. Three days later, she departed Greece to begin her voyage back to the United States. The warship concluded that voyage and her three-year deployment at Philadelphia on 30 July. After post-deployment standdown, she moved south to Norfolk in September for repairs but returned to Philadelphia in October in time to participate in the Navy's 200th birthday celebration on the 13th. Duty as a surface warfare school ship and more repairs at Norfolk followed.

On 6 December, the frigate entered the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard where she spent the following year undergoing a major overhaul. Her refurbishing completed on 2 December 1976, the warship resumed duty as an active unit of the Fleet early in 1977. Refresher training and various qualification exercises out of her new home port, Mayport, Fla., occupied her during the first six months of 1977. On 25 July, she departed Mayport for a cruise to South America to participate in UNITAS XVIII, the annual series of exercises in which units of various South American navies join the United States Navy in practicing the skills of hemispheric defense. In November, she concluded her UNITAS cruise and reentered Mayport on the 26th. Leave and upkeep in port took up her time for the remainder of the year.

A part of January and February 1978 was devoted to a restricted availability for Vreeland. The frigate devoted the ensuing months to preparations for her forthcoming deployment to the Middle East. Vreeland departed from Mayport on 23 July in company with Mullinix (DD-944). Following fuel stops at Bermuda, the Azores, and Rota, Spain, the ships transited the Mediterranean and the Suez Canal and arrived at Port Sudan, Sudan, on 9 August. A turnover from Glover (AGFF-1) and Barney (DDG-6) was effected, and Vreeland joined the Middle East Force. The remainder of the year was spent in operations with that group. On 31 December, Vreeland and Mullinix retransited the Suez Canal on their return to the United States.

On March 10th of 1980 the Vreeland deployed to the Mediterranean Sea and participated as the U.S. representative to the Belgian Naval Review and celebrated the 105th Anniversary of the Belgium Independence. Vreeland returned in mid August and prepared for a regular overhaul at Bath Iron Works in Bath, Maine.

In June of 1982 the Vreeland deployed for the Mediterranean/ Indian Ocean With the USS Forrestal Battle Group. On the first day out an SH-3H helicopter from the USS Forrestal experienced mechanical difficulties after lifting off the deck. The helo could not gain altitude and attempted to "water taxi". While in doing so the tail rotor struck the water disabling its ability to get airborne. The SH-3H is designed to float for a time to make recovery possible. The Vreeland was tasked with the rescue of the pilots and crew and then attaching a towing hawser to it and towing it to the Forrestal some 10 miles away. Vreelands motor whaleboat crew and two (SAR) swimmers from the ship's company sped to the scene. The pilots and crew were rescued but the hawser could not be attached due to the fact that the salt water activated smoke float had ignited. The motor whaleboat remained on scene but at some distance incase the helicopters fuel ignited. The helo sunk further and the smoke floats burned themselves out. The USS Forrestal maneuvered to recover the helo with the deck crane successfully.

January, 17, 1983 Vreeland transits Panama Canal and conducts special operations in Eastern Pacific Ocean.

November, 1983 Vreeland is awarded the Battle "E"

In April of 1984 the Vreeland departed Mayport for six month Mediterranean deployment. During this cruise Vreeland visited Bermuda, the Azores, Naples Italy, Catania Sicily, Siracusa Sicily, Monaco, Athens Greece, Catania Sicily, Taormina Sicily, Marseille France, Benidorm Spain, Palma Mallorca Spain, Torremolinos Spain, Gijon Spain & Rota Spain. Vreeland spent several weeks monitoring Soviet submarine and floating drydock activities in and around the Gulf of Sidra.

December, 1984 Vreeland escorts Soviet flotilla off the waters of Cuba.

May, 1985 Deployed to Honduras

Mediterranean Deployment 1986

Operation El Dorado Canyon-Libya 12-17 April 1986

Mediterranean Deployment 1988?

Operation Just Cause (Panama) December 20, 1989 - January 31, 1990

December 1990 Vreeland departs Mayport, FL. to take part in Operation DESERT STORM, January 17, 1991 - February 28, 1991

Decommissioned: June 30, 1992

Leased to Greece under the Foreign Assistance Act June 30, 1992 Renamed Makedonia (F458) On July, 25th 1992 under the command of Commander E. Korovesis H.N. she departed Mayport Fl. While crossing the North Atlantic on her maiden Hellenic Navy voyage she caught fire in the engineering spaces. The crew flooded the main engineering spaces and abandon ship. Later noting that the fire was subsiding some of the crew reboarded her and began trying to save her from sinking. Finally she was saved but was severly damaged; she was towed to safety and arrived in Greece on August, 25th.

January 11, 1995 The USS Vreeland is stricken from the US Navy ship registry

Hellenic Navy renewed lease - June 30, 1996

Decommissioned from the Hellenic Navy- January of 1999

Sold February 9, 2001


The heraldic ramifications of the Vreelands crest are many. The central design is that of the (VON) Vreeland family originally from Amsterdam, Holland.

The blazon of the shield which is approriate for the ship and its mission is that of a blue shield representing the oceans, the fess (horizontal bar) that of a convoy, while the three mullets (stars) allude the three major missionsof the ship; submarine hunter-killer, convoy escort and surveillance. The stars themselves symbolic of achievement, leadership and wisdom, while the number three in numerology denotes action, power and inspiration. The rampart lion supporting the coat of armsis a heraldic symbol of bravery and forthrightness, and its stalking pose one of deliberate intent. Its mailed fist illustrates the Vreeland's unremitting, iron thrust at the enemy below, while the claspedtrident is indicative of nautical supremacy. The centerwork is set against a sea blue field, the natural unfettered element of Vreeland.Contained within is the motto,


USS Vreeland DE/FF-1068
Builder Avondale Marine, Westwego, LA
Authorized July 22, 1964
Keel Laid Down March 20, 1968
Launch Date June 14, 1969
Delivery Date May 30, 1970
Commission Date June 13, 1970
Decommission Date June 30, 1992
Status Disposed of through the Security Assistance Program (SAP),
transferred, Foreign Assistance Act
Fate Leased to Greece June 30, 1992, Renamed Makedonia F-458
U.S. Stricken Date January 11, 1995
Hellenic Navy Renewed Lease June 30, 1996
Hellenic Navy Decommission Date January, 1999
Sold February 9, 2001
General Dimensions
Length 438 feet as built, 441.3 feet with Hurricane Bulwark                                         
Length @ Waterline 415 feet
Extreme Beam 46 feet 7 1/4"
Waterline Beam 46 feet 7 1/4"
Draft 14'9" from DWL (Design Water Line) @ keel, 24'9" @ sonar dome
15' under max load @ keel, 25' @ sonar dome
14'5" minimum operating conditions @ keel, 24'5" @ sonar dome
Full Displacement 4,200 tons (full load)
Light Displacement 3208 tons
Dead Weight 981 tons
Hull Material Steel hull, aluminum superstructure
Heights Above D.W.L. "Superstructure"
(D.W.L. 14'-9" Above Molded Base Line)
Top Most Point of Ship 119 feet 1 1/2"
AS-936A/SPS-10 Platform 101 feet 11 1/2"
Underside of Quadmast Platform 92 feet 1 1/2"
AS-1138/SPS-40 Platform 81 feet 4 1/2"
06 Level @ Top of Billboard: 67 feet 1 1/2 "
05 Level @ Top of Mack: 58 feet 1 1/2"
04 Level In Uptake Space: 49 feet 1 1/2"
03 Level @ Center Line FR 54 (Gun Director Platform): 44 feet 11 1/2"
03 Level In Uptake Space: 40 feet 1 1/2"
03 Level CIC High Hat: 37 feet 7 1/8"
02 Level @ Center Line FR 45 1/2 (Pilot House): 34 feet 6 1/8"
02 Level @ Center Line FR 110 (Top of Helicopter Hanger): (as built) 35 feet 10 1/2"
01 Level @ Center Line FR 45 1/2 to FR 54 (Captain's Cabin/Lobby): 26 feet 6 1/8"
01 Level @ Center Line FR 147 (Flight Deck): 23 feet 5 1/4"
Heights Above Base Line "Hull"
Main Deck @ Bow Point: 38 feet 9"
Main Deck FR 79 (Mid Ship): 29 feet 4 1/2"
Main Deck @Stern Point: 30 feet 6"
Second Deck @ Bow Point: 25 feet 4"
Second Deck @ FR 67 (Mid Ship): 21 feet 8 1/2"
Second Deck @ Stern Point: 21 feet 0"
First Platform @ Bow Point: 15 feet 6"
First Platform FR 67 (Mid Ship): 12 feet 6"
First Platform FR147 (Landing Force Locker): 12 feet 9"
Aft Perpendicular 13 feet 3"
Second Platform @ Bow Point: 5 feet 0"
Second Platform FR 41: 5 feet 0"
Second Platform FR 121(After Most Frame of Second Platform): 5 feet 3"
Sonar Transducer Room FR 10: 7 feet 9" Below Base Line
Boilers 2 Babcock & Wilcox 1,200 psi.
Turbine 1 Westinghouse geared steam
Shafts 1 Shaft: 35,000 SHP (Shaft Horse Power)
Endurance 4,000 NM @ 22 knts on 1 boiler
Max Speed 27 Knots
Bunkerage 200,000 gallons
ASROC 1 MK-16 eight cell ASROC (RUR-5A) launcher for 8 ASROC missiles
Harpoon Up to 8 RGM-84 Harpoon in place of ASROC missiles
Gun Mount 1 FMC  5" 54 cal  Mk-42 Mod-9 Dual-Purpose Gun Mount
SeaSparrow 1 MK-25 BPDMS (Basic Point Defense Missile System) 8 cell NATO SeaSparrow Launcher (replaced by CIWS in 1984)
CIWS 1 General Dynamics MK-15 20mm Phalanx M-61A1 Gatling Gun
Torpedoes 2x Mk32 Twin 324mm torpedo tubes for 24 Mk46 Mod 5
Light AA 4 X Browning .50 BMG machine guns
Fire Control
Gun Director Mk68 gunfire control system
Sub Surface Mk114 underwater fire control system
Missile Fire Control Mk115 Missile Fire Control System
Air Search AS-1138/SPS-40
Surface Search AS-936A/SPS-10
Gun Director SPG-53A radar used with Mk68 gunfire control system
Weapon Direction Mk1 weapon direction system
Bow Mounted AN/SQS-26CX Bow Mounted Sonar Dome
Variable Depth Sonar AN/SQS-35 Variable Depth Sonar (VDS)
Towed Array AN/SQR-18 Towed Array Sonar System (TACTAS)
Sonar Signal Processor AN/SQR-17 Sonar Signal Processor Subsystem (SSPS)
Electronic Countermeasures
ECM AN/SLQ-32(V)2 ESM/ECM system
ECM AN/SLQ-25 Nixie
Chaff and Decoy Launching System MK 36 SRBOC (Super Rapid Bloom Offboard Countermeasures)
Omnidirectional Receiving Antenna AS-1174/SLR Triple Output Antenna
Omnidirectional Receiving Antenna AS-1175/SLR
LAMPS Kaman SH-2F/G Seasprite LAMPS (Light Airborne Multi-Purpose System)
Personnel Boats
Captain's Gig 26' Personnel Boat MK-2
Motor Whale Boat 26' Motor Launch MK-5
Stockless 8,000 lb Stockless Keel Anchor fitted centerline aft of sonar dome
Danforth 4,000 lb Lightweight Danforth Anchor fitted to the port side
Officers 18
Enlisted 267
Total 285
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