Henry `Hank' Rogers Jr., 78, machinist, veteran

July 01, 2005

Henry "Hank" Rogers Jr., a retired machinist and a Coast Guard veteran and historian, died Wednesday at the Eastpoint Nursing Home and Rehabilitation Center of complications from surgery. The Chase resident was 78.

Born in Fort Monroe, Va., and raised in Bartow, Fla., he joined the Coast Guard at age 17 and was stationed in the Pacific during World War II. He remained in the service for 16 years and had been assigned to Coast Guard cutter Androscoggin and ice breakers in the North Atlantic.

He moved to Baltimore about 55 years ago and became a Crown Cork and Seal machinist in Highlandtown until retiring in 1990.

In retirement, he got involved in Coast Guard history and reunions.

He was a former president of the Spencer Association, a group of Coast Guard veterans who served aboard the Spencer, a World War II-era cutter that was scrapped in 1980.

"The guy was a walking goodwill ambassador for the Coast Guard," said Paul B. Cora, curator of the Baltimore Maritime Museum, which includes the submarine Torsk, lightship Chesapeake and the cutter Taney.

"He was of great help to a number of researchers and writers on subjects related to the Battle of the Atlantic in World War II," Mr. Cora said.

Mr. Rogers also arranged for the donation of artifacts related to the Spencer, which are now displayed on the Taney. Family members said he also donated materials to the "Spencer Wall" at the Coast Guard Training Center at Cape May, N.J.

A military honors funeral will be held at noon tomorrow at Bruzdzinski Funeral Home, 1407 Old Eastern Ave., Essex.

Survivors include his wife of 53 years, the former Thelma Marie Sauter; two daughters, Donna Marie Rogers of Chase and Colleen Kelly Dilly of Eldersburg; two brothers, Harry Rogers of Baltimore and Paul Rogers of Knoxville, Tenn.; and a grandson.

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