Transmission #3: Harold Bingaman

Photo courtesy of Hal Bingaman.

Courtesy of Hal Bingaman.

The most memorable part of the crossing was our near-forty knot speed, slicing through the Gulf Stream. Visiting the engine room was next: a quarter-million horsepower, spinning four long shafts from the power turbines to eighteen foot props; spotlessness everywhere, even in the engine room. The staff of SS United States were bright and efficient, a skilled team in complete harmony. They tended to our daughter’s needs and comforted my wife’s storm-illness.

We had five days and nights of family time — unusual during Cold War military service. One dinner came with a trout fish for my daughter under a silver dome in a swimming pose. But Juliann wouldn’t touch the “pretty fish.” However, I was pleased to do so.

– Harold Bingaman, former passenger and first lieutenant fighter pilot assigned to the Royal Air Force Station Shepherds Grove in Suffolk County (at the time of his voyage).