The President Coolidge

I was graduated from Berkeley in 1939; and as a gift, my mother took me to the Orient on the PRESIDENT COOLIDGE. It was a great trip, the first of many to that part of the world.

Many recollections stand out, including admiration for Mrs. Hart's two charming daughters. Her husband was Admiral Thomas Hart, who'd just relieved Admiral Yarnell as Commander in Chief of our Asiatic Fleet. She and the girls were to meet the Admiral in Shanghai.

One afternoon just two days out of Yokohama, I was with Mrs. Hart on the promenade deck when we saw a junk on the horizon. Our ship approached and then stood dead in the water as the junk came alongside. She told me a story.

The son of one of her best friends had, for a generous fee, signed on as a crewmember of a junk, which was to sail from Hong Kong to the west coast. Richard Halliburton, a popular travel writer at the time, had organized the adventure.

When the young man got to Hong Kong and fully realized the risk involved, he cabled home and said he'd decided not to join Halliburton. His father's return message said the money had already been spent and he'd better see it through.

He sailed from Hong Kong as a crewmember, but the junk disappeared at sea and had not been heard from for over a month. As the junk pulled alongside, Mrs. Hart was praying in thankfulness.

Unfortunately, she soon learned this was not Halliburton's, the fate of which has never been known.