@VAbowhunter My nephew was in the Coast Guard stationed in Sitka and loved it. Pictures I saw were beautiful.
one of the best duty stations was while stationed at the American Embassy in London:
my best friend at the time was a chauffeur for a Nigerian arms dealer, so we got to tool around London in a Rolls and a Bentley on the off hours…
second best was being stationed in San Francisco… had ‘flight skins’ and did helo overflights for naval engineering shots of cutters all over the Bay/Golden Gate, etc, along with fisheries patrols on HC130Bs out of Travis… pilot would cut back to two engines, drop to 200 feet off the surface of the Pacific about 150 miles off the coast, then lower the ramp, where i was strapped with a gunner’s belt to take deck shots when overflying Japanese trawlers to see if they were dragging for lobster (illegal, and if so, a cutter would be vectored in to seize the vessel, take it back to nearest port and auction off the lobsters)
it was a pretty sweet deal… i thought the extra $55/month for the skins was awesome money back then… had a 2-bedroom apartment on Nob Hill (Bush and Leavenworth) for $350 a month!
on the Gulf of Mexico
@linux_author I was on one of those cutters, USCGC Sherman (WHEC 720) out of Alameda 1979-81. We did ALPATs mostly doing fisheries enforcement and SAR in the Bering Sea. My brother-in-law was a brown shoe at Travis.
When I was in basic at FT. Leonardwood there was a private named McClain. He had a very poor attitude and one night tried to fight one of the Drill Sergeants on night duty. He disappeared the next day and then a few days later they paraded him into the mess hall in shackles and chains to eat. From then on any time we messed up one of the Drill Sergeants would yell “Who wants to join the McClain train?!”
When we mobilized at FT. Stewart to get on the buses to go to HAAF to fly to Kuwait for OIFIII, PFC. Johnson sat down on the ground in formation and refused to move. MP’s came and took him away and I never saw him again. I thought it was karma because he had stolen DVD’s from my wall locker in my barracks.
@VAbowhunter I was on GI in different jobs from 1982 to 91. Remember the old stockade ? That was my office for the time I was at the golf course. Retired out of Floyd Bennett Field, AIRSTA Brooklyn , in 94. I hate what they have done to my golf course since the Coast Guard gave up the Island.
You guys make me feel OLD.
@godallmighty Yes, I do remember the old stockade. That was where we would set up the annual Halloween haunted house for the kids. Those were fun times indeed.
@Kona never could understand those guys who refused to deploy. I mean what did they think they were signing up for?
If nothing else the rifle, body armor, and camouflage should have been a clue?
Here’s your sign…
@Kona Fight a drill sargent, wow, that’s crazy. We were so afraid of our drill sargents that I can’t even imagine challenging one of them.
@Kona you know this is gonna sound strange but as a young man plucked from the woods and mountains of oregon I just LOVED obstacle courses! (Hillbilly disneyland!)
Ft Leonard wood had the best! (Guess all of those combat engineers had nothing better to do?)
I used to volunteer to drive the Doc at NTA just so I could rappel down the cliffs again and again. (The NCOIC offered me a TAD position but the skipper wouldn’t go for it.)
I spent a year on USCGC Acushnet, WMEC-167 in 1978 while it was out of Gulfport Mississippi. Ports of call then included Bahamas, Jamaica, Ft. Lauderdale Fl., Charleston S.C., and Guantanamo Bay Cuba. Charleston was for D.C. school with the navy and Gitmo was for war games with the Navy.
dang! never realized there were so many members of Uncle Sam’s Canoe Club here!
remember: It’s not Semper Paratus, it’s Simply Forgotus!
on the Gulf of Mexico
More like when the other branches of the military gave up on equipment because they couldn’t fix it, they’d give it to us. As a machinery tech, I did learn one thing and that was how to fix anything with nothing. The ship above that I served a year on was formally the USS Shackle, a navy salvage ship commissioned in 1943. When the navy gave up on it, the Coast Guard got it.
Our survailence boat was was a 25’ cigerette boat that once belonged to the secret service. It was was originally used as a presidential guard boat for President Nixon off Key Biscayne Florida. Give us your old, tired, and broken and we will fix it.
Ah yes, it’s 65 and ya just Finished Boot Camp’ waiting for your Orders and Choice’s of duty stations as Per Your (3) Choice’s At time of Enlistment ! No problem the Recruiter say’s!
Hey Chief ! What’s this Tonkin Gulf Viet Nam ?? That’s not N.A.S. Seattle.
I could give you a few tales, of foray’s into the ANCON INN, jstreet, panama city panama, many a soldier and sailor been lost in that place, but those yarns would be xxx, not for the eyes here LOLOL
anyway, a pair of us were “volunteered” (the new butterbar volunteered I drew the short straw) to get underway with a SSN, so we could lock in lock out, test the seals, check for bubbles at the TT’s and the like. normal humdrum day to day “i need a body to get wet in the north sea stuff”
we finished up, and normally we would pop up and wait for our ride. we were about 20 to 30 miles out.
our pickup got sidetracked.
so a bird was sent to pick us up.
I had done it before. butterbar hadnt.
where it got funny. I tried to read it out to him, but noooooooooo i was just a E6. (I had bunjee’d about 2 dozen times, i drew the short straw…a lot.)
remember, a SSN or SSBN does not stop on the surface underway. period. they are a target then.
crew sets up the rig, and bird snatches our gear. bout 100ft, straight up.
ya have to. pulling something or someone off a sub moving thru the water, you have to go up elevator, hard and fast. or it or they will cook.
you have to break the static grid. fast.
I knew this, and I grabbed the straps on my rig, and pulled up up till i couldn’t stand up straight. and in a wetsuit, they aint no padding. Butterbar was screwing around adjusting his chest strap, and his crotch harness was slack.
I told him.
got told to Foxtrot Oscar (he was strutting in front of the deck officer, so…
I snapped up, loosened up, blew my air, gave the highsign and took my ride.
most fun you can have with clothes on.
butterbar, from what i was told later in a message later, was talking when he threw the highsign.
somewhere between sub and snatch, his gonads hit his adams apple.
I swear i head the scream over the rotor blast.
He tried to take the bird crew to mast, But i nixed that. I saw him throw the sign, and even if i hadnt, I had been given the ride by these cats before. no way nohow they would Charlie Foxtrot the pickup. they had pinpointed me in and out, to many dang times…
butterbar ended up transferring out, medical, something about medical issues…heard his old lady left him for another woman…
I was in the Civil Air Patrol when I was 12-14. I really, really wanted to learn to fly but in 2 years we never even so much as touched an airplane and I lost interest and then I discovered sex, drugs and rock and roll… I’ve always been very independent and was basically a “free range kid” and worked and was pretty much making my own way since I was about 16. I got good grades and graduated and scored really well on the ASVAB test but opted to go to vocational carpentry school instead. The older I get the more I regret not enlisting for a time and getting the great experience that it can be so I really these appreciate these stories and I (civilian) salute your service to our country. (soldier emoji here)
@GOBLIN oh my, boot looey stories…man I am sure we all have a lot of 'em!
Once had a second Lt refuse chow to a group of marines that had come out of the northern training area, living in the constant rain and mud for a week, because they “were dirty and unshaved”.
They had literally caught the last UH1, had it make an emergency landing for a mechanical failure, caught another ride and just made the end of chow call.
One thing you don’t do is let your marines go hungry!
Colonel had him personally serve each marine and sent home the KP crew and made the Lt. clean up afterwards.
2 boots got caught stealing MRE’s and burying the wrappers. The wrappers became their battle buddies and they had to carry them everywhere. One of them got recycled after they caught him stealing used cigarette butts from the butt jar by the barracks door.