Welcome aboard the USS Henry Clay SSBN 625

As visitors and riders come on board a submarine, they are normally herded to a safe place where they will be able to rest while the sailors and officers prepare the ship for underway and a dive below the surface. This visit is rare and has been one of the best ways for the Navy to show off the boat to both family members and people of influence. Since the very beginning of the Polaris program, politicians of every stripe including Presidents, Senators and Congressmen have taken short trips into the undersea world of the modern Navy submarine.

The pages displayed here are pretty common. While the riders are waiting for the big moment that the boat drops below the waves, they can read about the history of the boat and try and get a small understanding of what this whole thing is about.

This is the Henry Clay’s Welcome Aboard Booklet




The Commanding Officer that was featured in this pamphlet sadly passed away in 2016

James William Latham, 68, of Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, husband of the late Mathilda McCreary Latham, died Tuesday, March 15, 2016. His Funeral Service was held Saturday, March 19, 2016 at Palmetto Presbyterian Church, 1720 Carolina Park Blvd., Mount Pleasant at 2:00 pm. Interment followed in Mount Pleasant Memorial Gardens.

James was born June 11, 1947 in New Rochelle, NY, son of the late John Chalmers Latham and the late Mabel Corrin Cullison Latham. He was a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, Annapolis, MD and retired as a Commander from the United States Navy where he was a decorated war veteran. He worked at Chem-Nuclear in Barnwell, SC, was a member of the Barnwell Rotary and Barnwell Presbyterian Church. James loved to play golf and spend time with his family, especially his four grandchildren.

He is survived by a son, Robert J. Latham and his wife, Kaitlyn, of Chicago, IL; two daughters, Christine L. Betchman and her husband, Bo, of Mt. Pleasant, SC and Diane C. Latham of Atlanta, GA; four grandchildren; two brothers, John Latham of Asheville, NC and Daniel Latham of Chillicothe, OH.

Sailor Rest Your Oar


5 thoughts on “Welcome aboard the USS Henry Clay SSBN 625

  1. Served aboard the clay blue from 80 to 84.5 great boat great crew some of the best times of my life.

  2. My dad was assigned to the Henry Clay while she was still in the ways at Newport News. We lived in Hampton, VA while there. We watched her launch and then her commissioning and finally moved to Charleston, SC when she was assigned there. My dad made some arraignments and I got to watch when they loaded the Polaris missiles aboard. My dad was a CPO and operated the LORAN. His name was Bernard Penick. Sadly he passed away in 1975.

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