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Chief Meadows: A Man at Home in the Water

“Take almost any path you please, and ten to one it carries you down in a dale, and leaves you there by a pool in the stream. There is magic in it. Let the most absent-minded of men be plunged in his deepest reveries -- stand that man on his legs, set his feet a-going, and he will infallibly lead you to water, if water there be in all that region.  Herman Melville, Moby Dick


You might find it hard to believe that someone so much a Sailor was born in landlocked West Virginia. Beckley’s Raleigh General Hospital, to be exact.


Since very early, Don Meadows knew he had to get to water. He was always ready to head to the YMCA.  Excelled on its swim team, and later his high school squad.  He was in his natural habitat when in water.


He served aboard three United States Navy Nuclear Submarines. It was while stationed on the first, USS RAY SSN 653, that he discovered the art of Scrimshaw. He was tired of people taking the plastic coffee cup he had; so to prevent further problems with his roaming cup, he etched his name and a very crude sailing ship into the front. Soon others were asking to have pictures etched into their cups, and so it began.


From plastic cups to old piano keys to the work, you now see Don pushes his abilities to the maximum. With no formal training, Don enjoys the natural challenges that come with both the art and the material he works with.


His work in art has gained some noted clients and awards. Tom Clancy, Oliver North, Crown Prince of Bavaria, and President George W. Bush are among those having his work in their collections. His awards consist of Best of Show in the Mystic Intramural, and Naval Institute Press Best of Show. Several galleries also display his work.


Don also is the author of two naval thrillers: “OF ICE AND STEEL” and “EPITAPH.”  Both are available for purchase at several sources, Amazon, for one, and various book stores.  Most book stores will order them if you ask for D. Clayton Meadows books.


He began assembling and painting model ships early.  Ask his dad about the desk and carpets he ruined, the super glue he purloined and the tackle box of many colors of paints and glue.  As with swimming and the water, it was just a start.  Now he enjoys building scale models of everything from ships to tanks and is recognized in many quarters for his exacting work and historically correct models.


Any other spare time he has is dedicated to studying history – military history, marine history, Civil War history.


He and his wife are the parents of two fine young men.  They enjoy watching, and worrying as these young men set their own courses on life’s ocean. Donnie, the oldest, a promising chef while the youngest, Andrew, is also a Sailor serving with an F-18E Fighter Squadron VMF 81.


Don and Susan live in Hanahan, SC.  Don III lives at home and Andrew is in the Navy.
The Chief: Awhile Back and Here & Now
Hee Hee Haw?
The Hairy Days 
Stand-Up Comic Tom Clancy Autograph

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