Bob Csuka writes:
My dad was born in Manhattan, New York in 1911 to Hungarian Parents who sailed on the
Carpathian, landing in NY in 1909. He left school in the eighth grade and at the age
of 15 lied about his age and joined the navy. After he served four years in the service,
he joined the merchant marines until he retired at the age of 65.
He loved going to sea and would tell stories of his experiences around the world.
He was really a self made man. While working on a ship an older shipmate mentored him
that he should not be satisfied being a deckhand all his life and to study and take
tests offered to become an officer. Being on a ship gave him free time to study seamanship,
self teaching himself calculus and was able to become second mate, first mate and even
the highest rank of Captain.
My father was third officer under Captain J.D. Halliday aboard the Steel Seafarer on
Sept. 5, 1941, when their ship was sunk by a German Junkers 88.
During the Viet Nam conflict he was most proud of serving his country by bringing the
needed supplies to the troops. While in port in Nam the crew would be invited to have
dinner with the troops.