Corps holds sunset memorial in remembrance of Captain Joseph Klenzcar 

By Amanda Barbato, ‘19

Photo: Amanda Barbato, Nautilus Staff

Major Claude Davidson renders a salute in honor of Captain Joseph Klenczar’s passing. Klenczar served as the  master of the USTS General Rudder.

Captain Joseph J.W. Klenczar, Master of the Texas A&M Maritime Academy training ship General Rudder, passed on January 30. His death was due to complications from surgery, as stated in Texas A&M University at Galveston’s press release.

The Corps of Cadets held an informal sunset salute to honor and remember Klenczar on February 6.  The Corps of Cadets, faculty, staff, and friends joined on the T.S. General Rudder dock to honor his passing.

Cadet Corps Commander Cole Manders read a statement from Superintendent of the Texas A&M Maritime Academy, Captain Michael Rodriguez. 

“This evening as the sun sets we say rest well, Captain.  Your watch is over.  You are relieved,” the statement read.

Manders spoke of the quiet nature of Klenczar and his contributions to the Merchant Marine.

The Mariner’s Prayer was then recited. A salute from the Corps was held for one minute and thirty seconds, signifying Klenczar’s end of watch date 1/30. Klenczar previously vacated his position as Captain of the T.S. General Rudder due to medical reasons previous to the fall 2016 semester.

According to TAMUG’s press release, Klenczar graduated from Texas Maritime Academy in 1979 with a degree in marine sciences.

He served as Master of vessels during Operations Desert Storm and Iraqi Freedom. Klenczar returned to Texas A&M Maritime Academy in 2013. He first held the position of Chief Mate before becoming Master of the General Rudder.

Captain Scott Putty, Associate Professor of the Practice of Marine Transportation, attended Texas Maritime Academy and graduated with Klenczar.

“Joe was my dear friend and I will miss him,” said Putty in TAMUG’s press release.

Dr. Doug Palmer, Interim COO noted the legacy Klenczar leaves behind. “Scores of cadets will remember and benefit from the leadership of Captain Klenczar,” he said in TAMUG’s press release.