John McGuigan served aboard the USS North Carolina

by: SUBMITTED PHOTO - VET HONORED - John McGuigan (center) holds a certificate for 'Patriotic Service to Our Country' given to him by the Daughters of the American Revolution in April. He's accompanied by, from left, Donna Singer, Gwen Fausti, Kris Nelson, Sally Hartford, Karen Garst, McGuigan, Phil McGuigan (John McGuigan's son) and Blanche (John McGuigan's wife), Jan Burrows and Lois Streimer.The Champoeg Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution was pleased to present retired Chief Warrant Officer John McGuigan with a certificate for “Patriotic Service to Our Country” in April.

McGuigan served our country aboard the USS North Carolina which was dubbed “The Showboat” and saw every major naval campaign in the Pacific. He personally witnessed the sinking of the USS Wasp and was aboard when his own ship was struck by a torpedo. By the end of the war, “The Showboat” had earned 15 battle stars.

John was a young single man during his time at war. He told us that he’d seen too many of his shipmates receive “Dear John” letters to want to be married at that time.

After the war, John didn’t waste too much time in finding Miss Right. He met Blanche Ellen Palm, who was also in the Navy, and they married May 23, 1947. Blanch has an ancestor who also fought in the Revolutionary War.

McGuigan went on to make the Navy a career and retired after 30 years. He has served under some of the great admirals and generals of our time.

Champeog Chapter of the DAR was pleased to attend the Veterans Day Ceremony November 12, 2012, at Veterans Park in Sherwood. It was there that we met John with his youngest of five children, Phil. A couple of members from Champeog Chapter wanted to interview John for the chapter newsletter and made an appointment with him to talk.

From the moment we sat down with John, he was in complete control of the interview and our time flew by way too fast. John is one of these personalities that just captures your heart and wins you over with his charm and love for this great country.

Next month John and Blanche will be celebrating their 66th wedding anniversary. They are together at Avamere in Sherwood, where they are loved and visited often by family and their many admirers.

Champoeg Chapter of DAR invites women who think they might have a Revolutionary War ancestor and are interested in DAR membership to contact us.

You can call Jan Burrows at 503-577-9058 or e-mail us at It meets on the second Thursday of the month (Sept-May) at the Sherwood Senior Center in Sherwood.

Visit our webpage for more information at

— Submitted by Jan Burrows

Public Relations Champoeg Chapter DAR

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