Amateur painter Gunnar Van Rosen went to sea at the age of fifteen. He was a master of U.S. Army transport ships in World Wars I and II, including the U.S. Hospital ship Wisteria. During World War II he commanded a ship carrying 500 tons of dynamite, and withstood several strafing and bombing attacks. In 947, as commander of the USAT Chas. A. Stafford, Van Rosen participated, with its crew, in the rescue of thirty-one Portuguese fishermen from the sinking schooner Maria Carlota in the north Atlantic.
Courtesy of Mystic Seaport, Mystic, Connecticut