Page 14 started Feb 19, 2003

Letters, Random Memories and Assorted Sea Stories (Cont.)


As promised, I found the story about John F., my 8502 B roommate and friend.  This story was originally written for my children.  I'm not exactly sure how accurate the ending is, though, since I may have taken some liberties.  Does anyone from 8502 remember things differently?

"My good friend John Fir__one has been mentioned before in these letters.  I met him in Great Lakes when we were both students in EM-A school. We were also in the same nuclear power school class in Orlando. John was huge! I would guess that he was about 6' 4" and weighed about 300 lbs. John's pride and joy was his Honda Gold Wing—a huge motorcycle that looked like a mini-bike between his mighty legs. John was so strong and powerful that he could (and would routinely) pop wheelies on that giant motorcycle to show off for us or whoever else happened to be watching.

John was a below average student and was barely hanging on in nuke school. Toward the latter half of school he developed a skin irritation (on his hands) and was told that he might have to be removed from the nuclear power program and given a medical discharge from the service. Soon it became a race between failure from nuke school and the medical discharge. If he failed out of school before the medical discharge, he'd be re-assigned to the fleet as a conventional electrician, where his skin condition wasn't an issue.

The weeks dragged on and John was doing very poorly in school. If he failed one more exam he was out. Our chief was doing everything in his power to delay the doctor's final report to keep John from "escaping." Then came the showdown—looming at week’s end was the infamous reactor principles exam #4, the grand daddy of them all. It was well known that this particular test was a killer (more students flunked this one more than any other). John's doctor, on Monday of that week, decided to recommend him for a medical discharge. John saw the light at the end of the tunnel; however, Tuesday and Wednesday came and no action was taken. By Thursday afternoon John was in a genuine panic; if the doctor's report didn't de-nuke him before the next morning, he would have to take the test. He told us that if by some miracle, either he passed the test or got his medical discharge in time, he would buy a gorilla suit and ride his motorcycle up and down Colonial Blvd (the main road in front of the base) to celebrate.

Then Friday morning came and we all sat at our desks in silence. At 8:00 sharp, our teacher walked in with the exams. As the test was [being] handed out, John hung his head low in sorrow; he was doomed. Just as we were told to begin the exam, the door opened and in walked our Chief. He had a frown on his face and said:

'Fir__ne, collect your things. Your medical discharge just came through.'

Everyone in the class began to cheer as John collected his things and walked out of the classroom, forever!

Well, true to his word, John went and bought the gorilla suit and, on the very next day, drove up and down Colonial Blvd in the hairy outfit. He popped wheelies, honked his horn, and cranked the bike’s stereo (blasting out circus music). Taped to the cargo compartment of his bike was a sign that read:

'Congo - The Motorcycle Riding Ape.'

People lined the streets wondering what the hell was going on."

KP Note:  As I said above I'm not sure if the ending of this story is true.  I think John bought the ape suit and I think he drove around Colonial Blvd but I don't actually remember seeing it.  That RP #4 exam was flunked by my entire section and the so-called "Picture Incident" was just about to begin as a result.  That is why my memory is fuzzy about the events immediately following John's miraculous and timely medical discharge.

More About John F.

John Firestone was a farm boy from Greenville, PA and I have spent years looking for him.  One time I was even driving through Greenville and stopped and asked people if they knew him or his family.  No luck.  These days I do Google searches on his name and still don't find anything.  Hmmmm, I wonder where he could be ..... ?

It's funny how you don't think about someone for a long time and then one memory gives way to a ton of memories.  I'll never forget the first time I saw John sitting in the lounge of the ITB 162, when we were both in BEE school.  He looked like a giant with a baby face.  Weeks later he and I were hanging together and having regular adventures.  

I'm also looking for my good friend Alan Huff.  He also was in 8502 B and was my roommate at MARF.  He failed his final board and wound up on the USS Sacramento.  We saw each other throughout the '86 Westpac since the Sacramento was one of our escorts.  I lost touch with him after that.  Al was one of the funniest guys I ever met.  


3-Plant RM!

I have visited your wonderful site several times and read all the stories. Brings back some fond memories of the days in
Bummertown and Alameda. And who could ever forget the PI.

Here is a story I haven't seen on your pages. After finally leaving PSNS the secondary shield tanks wouldn't hold level. Green dye was put in all the tanks to look for leaks. It turned out there weren't any, the yard had plugged all the vent lines and the tanks kept on burping and level would drop. After arriving in Alameda with the wives, kids, cats and dogs  onboard. The green water was dumped out of all the tanks into the bilges. Well, the water level in the bilges was about up to the deck plates so it had to be pumped overboard. It would have been better if it was done discretely at night. But instead it was pumped over in the middle of the morning. Big green slick down San Francisco Bay. Made the evening news. 

Having left the Navy but not the Navy Nuke program, I have run into several other ex Enterprise Nukes. Seems some people just can't break the ties. Even got the chance to help with the refueling at Newport News. The thing was so rusty they had to use impact drivers to disassemble the CRDMS. Work currently has me at NRF. The place still exists. All the prototypes are shutdown now, kind of sad to see them sitting idle. 

Fred Hirayama
RM23 '81-'85

Kevin Morris Comes Aboard!


I was onboard the Big E from November 1977 through November 1981. I was in RC-14 and then Crew C while in the Yards. Reading the entries on your site has brought back great memories, although most of that period of my life is pretty foggy. Chalk that up to years and beers. I’ve recognized lots of names so far too, and I’m looking forward to seeing more come out of the shadows.

Unfortunately, I haven’t done too well at staying in touch with the friends I made on the Enterprise, although I did spend a great weekend this past summer catching up with Mark Schall when he and his wife made the trip from North Carolina to Michigan to visit. Thanks again Mark!

A couple pages back Buddy Hierholzer mentioned Greg Lawrence. Buddy, I heard from "Sam Kilo" in about 1988. He called from Sheboygan, Wisconsin to let me know that some 4 Planters were planning a reunion in Las Vegas. I’m pretty sure he said it was being organized by Jim Rusch. I didn’t make it, but I’m wondering if anybody out there did? I’d love to hear about it. Given that bunch, it must have been a great party!

Kevin Morris

Modern Era RE!

Hi my name is EM2 Killingsworth, Michael. I work in RE11 now and was RE22. My email address is

"Fred and Me"

I was wondering where my old Sea Dad ended up. Fred Hirayama was without doubt, the person who knew more about RM systems than anyone. 

The image attached was drawn in the RM23 Dopey Book -- you know the one under the 1 shaft spring bearing forward in RARLL? The artist was Don Davis (if I remember right). When Fred was assigned as my Sea Dad, Don had to make an entry:

Welcome Fred to these pages. We all look forward to hearing your stories of Deck Plate Tag and other endeavors of your life on ENTERPRISE, both as a squid and during your later life.

Mark Best
Las Cruces, NM

"SOP" from Joe B.

I was going through some old files and found this: Across the top was hand-written, "Standard Operating Procedure - CVN-65"


In the beginning was the Plan

And then came the Assumptions.

And the Assumptions were without form.

And the Plan was without substance.

And darkness was upon the face of the Workers.

And they spoke among themselves, saying, "It is a crock of shit, and it stinks."

And the workers went unto their Supervisors and said, "It is a pail of dung, and we can't live with the smell."

And the Supervisors went unto their Managers, saying, "It is a container of excrement, and it is very strong, such that none may abide by it."

And the Managers went unto their Directors, saying, "It is a vessel of fertilizer, and none may abide its strength."

And the Directors spoke among themselves, saying to one another, "It contains that which aids plant growth, and it is very powerful."

And the Directors went unto the Vice Presidents, saying unto them, "It promotes growth, and it is very powerful."

And the Vice Presidents went unto the President, saying unto him, "This new plan will actively promote the growth and vigor of the company, with powerful effects."

And the President looked upon the plan, and saw that it was good.

And the Plan became Policy.

And this is how Shit Happens.

A Letter From My Old Division Officer!!!

Hi Ram,


I'm a physicist at LLNL. Mostly I do computational physics related to gas- and hydrodynamics. Been working here since '88 when I got out of the Navy; got my PhD in '94. I'm also a group leader, so I manage five other projects, besides working on my own stuff. Keeps me busy.

I don't hear too much from the other officers. Once in a while I hear from Dean Sun, who was a LT. in Eng./E-Div. He stayed in the Navy for quite a while, but now is out and working on an MS in Alaska (home state). Tommy Corconan (Eng./M-Div) went to work at a nuc. plant in NJ; Joel Eacker (Rect./RT-Div) went up to work at the Hanford Site. There's another guy here at the lab I've seen, (and whose name escapes me at the moment) - I believe he used to be in RT before Eacker. He got cancer while teaching at Idaho and was cashiered out of the Navy. He's in remission, and working here now.

I kept contact with quite a number of enlisted guys because I ran a long running D&D game when I got out of the Navy. Jim Welch (RC), George Campbell (RC), JD Hartmann (RM), Mike Stonebraker (RM) and Jeff Lewis (RM) all were in it. Jeff is now an [...] oil refinery worker in NJ, JD works at Rocky Flats as a rad worker, George moved to Oregon and I think works at Fort Hood, Jim and Mike disappeared. Ollie Sohn (RT) also played for awhile, but got married and moved to Miami to be near his folks. {I'm pretty sure I got the right divisions, but my memory is 12+ years old now....} 

I also heard from Chief Whittsett. He [...] had just gotten out of the Navy. He was pretty unhappy with his latter Navy (Officer/Mustang) experience, but wanted a letter of recommendation from his 'better' Navy day; I was happy to oblige since he had been a good chief for me.

Well, back to work,


Thanks for the updates Mr. A!  It was great to hear how well you're doing.  I used to know something about computational physics but I forgot most of it when I assumed the identity of Mooj.  Now all I do is make plant food and help people achieve oneness with themselves.

I remember Mr. Corconan very well.  He was a guitar player, and we spent many a mid-watch discussing the greatness of Robert Johnson and Son House.  He also had a band (but I forget who was in it besides him--mostly 3-plant MDivr's) that often played at the Park Street Saloon [or was it Park Street Station?] at the other end of Alameda.  

Mr. Eacker was also a great guy.  I remember once someone called the papers and told them that one of the relief valves opened while we were pier-side in SF bay (PRV1 lifted for a microsecond during a trip-and-cal mishap).  He did quite a song and dance explaining everything when the press called him asking for details since he was the rad-con officer.  He claimed the phone was ringing "minutes" after the incident so whoever tipped off the press must have made a bee-line for the phone to start trouble. 

It's funny, I haven't thought about D&D since the navy.  There was always a group of guys in the aft (non smoking) lounge playing that game.  During the '86 cruise I remember Lance Winters hung up a bunch of signs advertising that "EM3 Tuli was a [?]th level wizard and was looking for a D&D game."  Some guy actually woke me up in the middle of the night to see if I wanted to play (I think it was RL Div's MM2 Jackson). I can't remember what I told the guy but I wasn't too nice.  Ollie Sohn, mentioned above, is listed in the contacts section.  


More '86 Westpac Memories ....

I mentioned way back on page 1 how RM23's Lance Winters and I often amused ourselves by hanging signs about each other all over the ship.  Lance's signs always proved effective (whether it was for finding guys looking for a "special" roommate or a 9th level D&D master wizard).  One sign that Lance posted somewhere near the fwd mess decks really got some results.  It noted that I was giving Hindu meditation lessons.  I can't remember how many people called me inquiring about that (it was more than a few).  If I was smart I would have made up a Hindu meditation program and charged for it.  

My memory is fuzzy on the details but once the sign war thing got really out of hand and Brad Stephens became involved (he was an innocent bystander).  Lance thought Brad posted something (but it was really me) so he filled Brad's boondockers with hair.  (The hair was collected in the aft lounge during a pre-liberty call haircut marathon.)  Poor Brad was really confused and disturbed about putting his foot inside a boondocker that was filled with hair.  He had no idea why someone would do that to him.  I felt bad about that.  

That whole '86 westpac was pretty much nothing but people pulling jokes on people and then someone getting even because of it.  I remember "MTW" was also pretty brutal to me in those days and often filled his pockets with sausages and bacon on the mess decks and then would toss them on me while I slept.  Nothing was creepier than waking up and feeling a sausage-like object on your face.  "VW" also went to the pain of HP-taping me into my rack one night.  He must have used 3 or 4 rolls of tape and I never heard a thing.  When I woke up I couldn't figure out what the hell happened.  People also used to trap people inside their racks by lifting the coffin part up and then wedging the support pole down.  It was nearly impossible to get out.  If you had no sense of humor you were in trouble.   


Random Nuclear Memories ....

One persistent problems for those of us slowly growing older: How (besides this site) does one discover other nukes? I have considered yelling, "Spill" while transiting major airports or the larger bars encountered in traveling, but this seems likely to cause a bit of confusion in the non-nukes. Odd the nuclear program did not leave visible marks to help us ID each other.

Memories from the Cruiser (CGN-40 mid 80s):

Crossing the Atlantic with Kennedy battle group we had to transit edges of hurricane (those conventional tubs get lighter as they speed up and can't avoid weather easily). In the plant simultaneous High and Low level alarms for PZR, DA tank, main engine lube oil, condensers ... just a noisy mess. On the mess decks the chairs were removed. I recall sitting cross legged on the deck with tray on my lap, sliding across the floor on my butt as the ship rolled. That was bad enough, but as I finished eating, a mess crank tried to put a new box of milk in the dispenser. He miss-timed the roll, and the box of milk shattered on the deck. Huge mess. [I note that the wardroom was worse, as the gents there eat off of multiple plates, cups and saucers ... too many to catch and keep from leaving the table. Probably not the sort of thing you get on an 90,000 ton carrier.]

Midshipman cruise: We embarked a group of mids, and the third class ones all rotated through T-div (I think bneq). These were NROTC kids from several universities, and they were so impressed that about 1/2 of them decided the ol' Nav was not for them ... and they left NROTC when returning to school that fall. Did you big boat guys ever harass the mids? We treated them worse than nubs.

Back to high-seas and sea-sickness. We had an M-div'r (a good guy really) who was really bad. In high seas, he would get the watch sup to EOS, and then stand at feed control (huge air vents there, one on each side). He would fill a trash bag during the watch. He would only move to go to scuttlebutt to tank up on water, which he would then transfer to the trash bag. 

We did have a ghost up in one plant, that may have caused his puking.  Whenever we scrammed, the NI's would go tits up. Two plant had more than 100 more EFPH than one plant when I left. Cross-Connected plants worked fine, unless lots of bell changes. The Leslie pneumatics could not handle rapid
changes for both plants.

On our cruiser, the distilling unit was run by an A-ganger, who thus could not be assigned to help out when splitting or cross connecting plants. Since all they had to do was logs once per hour (and no moving from one spot) one dragged an alarm clock to wake him up for logs, and some good smut books to thumb through while waiting. These got stowed in the drawer of the "Hear Here" booth. NR was not amused when they found them a few days after we returned to port. 

In port week after med run lots of people are gone, and new nubs are arriving. The plants are very quiet. The shutdown mechanic took a grease pencil and did some art work on the PMS board where we also had a clock. The inscription was "Mr. Clock says tune your radio to WLOG, for all your log taking needs."

For a while after return, you also need all the RCPs running for decay heat.  The 38 class has plugs for twenty shore power cables, ten forward and ten aft. Usual hookup was ten only. This would allow hotel loads plus RCPs.  There were two Mk26 missile launchers, each with 5 or 6 large motors for hydraulics. Lit off one at a time manually, no problem. If they were all turned on in auto the shore power breakers would trip. OOPS .... no lights, diesel starts, FZ alarms, security alerts. Would happen every month or so. We once blew up the shore power breakers, and on a really good evening, toasted one of the shore-side transformers. Fun, Fun, Fun. Bad memory: Offgoing watch section would have to pull the shore power cables up from pier with a rope. First on and Last off is really true.

King Paul mentioned being taped into his rack. We did that at times. Once we used dental floss. Ship's store sold spools of 100 yards of the stuff. We used a dozen or so spools ... around and around and around the empty top rack and below the bottom of the middle rack. The guy in the middle rack never woke up. I seem to recall he cut himself out with toe nail clippers.

You did need a great sense of humor to make it through, but I agree the nuke program had a profound influence on how I think. I once had a master's thesis underway about the program, but dropped it. Needless to say it would not fit the politics of 90% of those that would have reviewed it.

Best to all the aging nukes out there. The memories seem particular strong as preps for war continue. Particular best wishes to the nukes of today who will never be on CNN, but who keep things moving (literally)

Cruiser Ghost

Midshipman Memories

Before we moved to Phoenix we lived in Maryland, about 30 minutes north of the Naval Academy.  I loved Annapolis and often walked around the academy with my children and told my sons (and daughters) that someday I hope they go there.  If they do I hope when they go on their summer cruises they get treated better than how we treated midshipmen on the Big E.  

I already mentioned one midship-woman, who I took on a tour of the Fwd IC shack, where she was offended by all the pornography posted in there.  Had I done a 'pre-watch tour' I would never have taken her down there.  This "midshipwoman" was actually from Duke (ROTC?).  She was a total bitch and told me that I could never get into a place like Duke. I was a short timer then and applying to colleges.  I was interested in Duke and asked her about it.  She sized me up and told me I wasn't Duke material.  (That is why I often "dis" Duke in my Mooj newsletters).  She was actually assigned to our Division Officer for a week and followed him around wherever he went.  Whenever she followed him into the RE office we would try to guess the color of her nipples and she had no idea what we were talking about.  Our DO knew what we were doing and would frown at us.  During that summer ('89 -'90 cruise) I was assigned my very own midshipman for a week.  I was a PO1 then and for some reason Cmdr Bersticker (the RO) liked me so he asked me to do it.  My midshipman was between his freshman and sophomore year (he wore dungarees) and was pretty cool.  I actually did everything I could for the guy to make sure he got the most out of his time in reactor department.  The only unkind thing I did was ask the drill team to nail him with water during a spill drill (SWIMS.....).   They made the poor guy undress completely.  The "middie" actually liked RE Div since he had already spent a few weeks with two other top side divisions.  He said we were much smarter that the other enlisted men he met and found it unusual that we didn't smoke or cuss as much.   


One for the Cruiser Ghost ....

Hey KP,

Couldn't stop laughing when I read the latest stories. Especially Cruiser Ghost wanting to yell Spill in a public place. Too funny.

It brought to mind a couple of more stories from the CGN-40 from the late 80s. We got 30 middies aboard for a 6 week northern Europe run. The powers that make all of the really dumb decisions decided to put them all in the same berthing. So they kicked RC division out of their racks and put the middies in. Needless to say, RC div'ers were spread all over the ship, making wakeups nearly impossible. And those middies lived through 6 weeks of pure hell. One of them puked in an ET1's boots (who was left there to baby sit). Or when some admiral was due onboard the next day, the CDO decided to wake up the duty section at 2300 'cause the ship wasn't clean enough. 5 minutes after muster was announced, the 1 plant SRO went to the head (swapping watches w/the SEO) and he tripped into the Shore Power breaker trip button. So much for Field day. Or when an unknown person (Tim Glassmire?) fell into the CTG trip at 100% power and flow.  Then I went to the Big E for 6 years, which was a pretty good transition from the CGNs. Life on Big E, as seen here, is crazy. Now that I'm on a Nimitz class, let me tell you, they suck. I'll take a CGN or Big E any day.


Brian Heasley
CGN 40 87-92
Big E 95-2001
CVN 69 01-04

Change of email address ...

Hi Ya'll,

New E-Mail address is


Ken Higgins

From Another 80's 3-Planter:


I enjoyed your website very much, brought back some great memories.  You were right, somehow you only remember the good times!! I do not want to be on the "contact" list (yet). I just wanted to say thank you.



To The Anonymous RM23 Guy:

Hard to believe that there is actually someone from RM-23 (especially from that timeframe) who is too shy to share their identity. We all would like to hear your stories as you remember them. We shared a lot of time in the plants together .... days of Duane Petrie and Duane Bush. 

Remember filling Petrie's beloved coffee cup with pubic hair after one of his tirades?

Mark Best

Another story about soaking Khaki dogs!

Hey KP,

Your story about soaking khaki dogs during spill drills brought back memories of another story. Just before I left the Big E the shipyard came onboard to work on the feed lines. The work had the feed lines cut right at the steam generators. One morning the watch officer asked me to fill and sparge the generators being worked on so I had Jim 'Foreskin' Forehand and Bill-E Tarr work on the job. In order to fill the generators in a timely manner they were instructed on how to bypass the RPFW pumps and fill the generators directly from the DI main. Well, when in port the DI main usually supplied a good volume of water, had quite a bit of pressure and if you didn't throttle down on the inlet valve just before filling the SG's solid, there would be a big pressure surge. After filling the first generator and blowing off the temporary sight gage on the steam generator they were reminded of the pressure surge and told to throttle down on the inlet a little more. Well I guess I didn't tell them to throttle down enough. About the time the second generator was just about filled two NRRO went for a tour in the reactor compartment. They stopped to look at the work the shipyard was doing, right underneath the feed line that was cut. Just then the generator filled, the pressure surged and the temporary plug in the feed line blew out dumping all the water right on those two NRRO. Couldn't have better timing.  Couldn't have happened to two better people. Better yet, the cause was blamed on the shipyard for improper installation of the plug.

Fred Hirayama 

MMC Frederickson

KP, I just saw this from a newsletter I get from I'm not sure, but I am almost positive this guy served on the E in the 80's. He worked for me when I was a CRAO and ALPO in two-plant. If someone has further info, please let me know. If this is him, He was a great guy, and sad to see another fallen shipmate.

Tony Boone

Submarine Base Sailor Dies in Nightclub Fire 
Navy News Service
February 27, 2003

GROTON, Conn -- Rhode Island authorities investigating the West Warwick, R.I., nightclub fire of Feb. 20 have confirmed the death of Chief Machinist's Mate Dan Frederickson of the Naval Submarine Support Facility (NSSF). 

Frederickson, 37, was one of 97 people who died in the blaze, which began when a rock concert's pyrotechnics ignited flames along the club's back wall. The fire quickly spread and engulfed the entire building within minutes. 

He had been assigned to the Naval Submarine Base New London (SUBASE) tenant command in Groton, Conn., since May 2000.   

An Early 80's Hammer Mechanic!

Please list me on the roll sheet. I checked aboard the BIG E Aug. 6, 1981 (my 21st birthday) and was aboard till Aug., 1985. During my Tour I was assigned to EM22 until moving to 625 and finally the last 6 months in the M-Div office. I enjoyed the site and found a few former shipmates. Also as a footnote I was single during my enlistment, but Christmas of 2002 I was able to tour the BIG E with my wife.

Ron Littrell

Cup Wars

It was nice to see another Mississippi nuke pass through. It was an interesting place to be in the 1980s.

The remarks about pubes in cups, puked boots etc bring some of my early navy memories up from the pits of middle age.

While I was at S1W (late 82/early 83) some of the staff (submariners all I think) had a progressive war going on. First it was borrowed or stolen white hats. This progressed to minor abuse: hats filled with snow and replaced in filing cabinet drawers. One guy then doused a comrade's hat with some French dressing. The revenge move was a finger in the throat and puking into the offender's hat. This was, I thought, unmatchable, but nukes will always find a way. The ET with the puked in hat used a night shift to do a wank (lovely brit term) into his enemies coffee cup, giving him a few ml of creamer I suppose.

The coffee mug (ships crest) was retired to desktop pencil cup duty, and as far as I know, a truce was declared.

I don't recall any cup wars on CGN-40 going that far.

My time on board was from 83-June 86, being a one plant mechanic. I will take a moment to salute Devin Mun, sterling mechanic and ERS on my orse crew. Most other names have faded with time, as I game all my cruise books, uniforms, medals and junk to a young kid with absent father and dreams of a military career.

Best wishes to all,
Cruiser Ghost

The Boat ....


When Schmegma House was first mentioned I immediately thought about an RO. Not sure, but his name might have been Schuerman. He had reddish brown hair and I think he was from Texas. Anyway, while in Bremerton, he decided he was going to re-up and I remember him talking about how he was going to spend his bonus. His initial plan was to buy a Dodge Ram pickup, but then he had the bright idea of becoming a boat owner! So he spends pretty much his entire bonus on an old, wooden, cabin cruiser.

I don’t know how much good use he got out of it, but it ended up at anchor in the bay just out from Schmegma House. And there it sat…for a long time. It was the subject of a couple letters to the editor in the local paper from residents complaining about the derelict and they even ran a picture. Somebody who was directly involved with how it all turned out (a Schmegman?) should tell the rest of the story, because I’m sure my version wouldn’t be completely accurate. All I know is that since we were on different crews I would usually only see him at turnover and would try to remember to ask him about it. The story was sad and embarrassing for him (and hilarious for the rest of us) to the point that eventually he’d just lower his head and moan, "I don’t want to talk about it."

Kevin Morris

RM23 Alum, Comes Aboard!

Michael-Ray Boyden

Bob Filler Comes Aboard

Hey Ram. My name is Robert (Bob) Filler. I was a MM in RM-14 in 1984 & 85. Please place me in your no-nonsense 80's list. You were in 4 plant. Maybe you remember Dave Luce (Oscar the Grouch), Pinkie, Barry Cox. I am also in picture that Mike Noland posted of us in PI at some bar. I am in front row to the right. Wearing glasses. I also had a good friend by name of Mike Brosemer who was in M-Div. Wish I knew where all those people were. I got off the pig due to a hardship discharge. First wife got killed in car accident in Vallejo. When I was in 4 plant I worked with Guy Gaines, Willie Wright, Glen Solberg, Chief Parker, Dave Luce, Barry Cox, Ralph Hall, and others I can't quite remember. I used to do a lot of drinking with a guy by the name of Purcell. Everyone called him Zippy the pinhead. I also recall seeing Chief Parker floss his nose with a spaghetti noodle. My e-mail address is  I am in the Navy reserve now and in a seabee battalion that is getting activated to fight Saddam. Should be a swift victory for us. Later. 

Bob Filler 

It is always great to hear from another 4-planter!  I remember most of the guys you mentioned above, especially Barry Cox.  Most of these guys were pretty senior when I showed up in 4-plant as a nub.  Good luck in the Gulf!!  


For Those Who Care ....

The latest Mooj Weekly Standard has just been posted.  There's a letter in there from one of you.  See if you can guess which one.  Also, some of you "on the ball" Mooj Heads may like to know that new minion #1370 (Yo Yo Ma Ma) is an old friend of mine, he was an intern back at SAIC (where I worked until 2002).  His likeness was used for my character "Trent Handjoy." He's a great guy.  I was happy to hear from him again.


An A-Ganger!

Hey, how about including an old a-ganger on lists?  I was on Enterprise from Feb 1998 to July 2001 and I worked in the hydraulic shop of A-Gang. (EA01) my name is Brian Alexander. Thanks!

Old George ....

Now that it’s NCAA tournament time again I am reminded of a funny incident that happened long ago in the NPS BEQ. Back in those days few of us had TV sets and those that did were everyone’s friend. (Kind of like how the guy with a car was everyone’s friend). That was the year of the big upset, when Villanova beat Georgetown. Everyone wanted to see the game but since most of us didn’t have a TV, or were on Mando hours, few saw the game live. A few days later someone obtained a videotape of the game and someone actually had a VCR and TV in his room (a rare thing for 1985) so we all got together for a little shin-dig.  About halfway through the game someone walked in (George Dellamura?) and said, "I bet Georgetown wins." Everyone took the bet and then someone got up and fast-forwarded the tape to the end. Everyone was laughing except the poor guy stupid enough to bet on a game that was played days before.

Speaking of 8502B’s Dellamura, he sure was a character. I think he was from Brooklyn or the Bronx. One day after lunch we took our NPS seats to await the afternoon session. A few minutes before class started "VW" stormed into the classroom. His face was bright red and he looked like he was insane with rage.  The veins on his neck were even bulging! He then made a beeline for George and began to beat him senseless. Within seconds those nearest the scene pulled the two apart and everything was straightened up before the teacher arrived.  Everyone took their seats and we all pretended like nothing was going on.  No one had a clue what happened—especially poor George. Later that day I asked VW about what happened but he refused to talk about it.  I guess George D. had a big heart because he quickly forgave VW and the issue was never brought up again.

Years later VW and I were roommates. We shared a house with Dicko and "Q" in Dublin during the '87 SRA. One day I was driving into work with VW and asked him, "Say VW, remember way back in nuke school when you came in from lunch that day and started beating the hell out of George Dellamura?  ...... What the hell was that all about ....... ?" At first he was reluctant to tell me but finally did. 

It turned out that during the lunch break VW went back to his room. While there George asked if he could borrow some toilet paper. VW couldn’t remember what he told George but later, when VW was going to the bathroom, he found that there was no toilet paper. It was just one of those things where poor VW really needed toilet paper and didn’t have any. And, in his mind, it was all George’s fault. The guy, instead of taking only a few sheets—took the whole damn roll!

Another funny memory I have of George took place when we were at prototype. Back in those days I was living in Middle Grove, NY with fellow 8502B classmates Dave Feisleben, Bill Cawthon and Al Huff. Bill and Dave had cars and Al and I didn’t. Thus, it became a real hardship when Dave and Bill were assigned to section 4 (at S8G, "i.e., skate 8") and Al and I were in assigned to section 1 (at MARF). Our house was about 8 miles from the site so we were in deep shit. 

In the early days we relied on our benevolent neighbors Joe Nieves (EM14), Todd Landis (EM23) and the infamous Oompa Lumpa Man (EM23?) for a ride. But then those dreaded +2s started and we were often stranded without a ride home. Al and I would then have to employ what we called "the walk of sympathy" to get a ride home. Basically, we would walk along the road (with the DIG Ball to our backs) and hang our heads low. The more pathetic we looked the better. Usually someone would feel bad for us and stop and offer us a ride before we got too far. 

One day it was pouring out. We kept walking and walking and no one would stop! Al and I were getting pretty discouraged; could it be we might actually have to walk the whole 8 miles home??? It was sure looking that way!  Then we heard a car come screeching to a halt beside us—it was our old buddy George Dellamura! He rolled down his window and asked, "Hey, you guys need a ride?" to which Al Huff replied (sarcastically), "Uh, no George, we enjoy walking in the freezing rain …." George said, "Okay," rolled up his window and drove off! I almost killed Huff.  I remember Al saying something afterwards like, "I guess it doesn't pay to be a smart ass at times like this ...."


Chernobyl ....

Do any of you 1986 Westpac guys remember the day Chernobyl melted down? We were somewhere in the Med. (How does one get into the Med on a westpac?)  I remember hearing (but I don't know if this was true) that the 2MMR and 3MMR APDs alarmed due to the increase in background radiation.  One WO even thought there was a primary to secondary leak.  The thing that sucked most about the whole Chernobyl thing (besides killing the nuclear power industry in the U.S.) was that all fresh fruit, milk and vegetables got quarantined and so we were back to eating canned and boxed stuff like we did in the IO. 


Memories of Middle Grove, NY ....

About a month into shift work I finally bought a car.  It was a '77 Pontiac that I got for only $500.  It was pretty beat up but worth every penny because she never failed to start, even when it was subzero outside.  (Sadly, that loyal car was heartlessly abandoned in the Delta Lot of NAS Alameda when I failed to retrieve her following the '88 westpac.  Alas, she had been replaced by brand new 1988 Honda CRX.)

Middle Grove, NY (also referred to as Greenfield Center) was out in the middle of nowhere, .... far, far, far from anything "civilized."  Unlike you Idaho boys (who took a bus) us New Yorkers had to get to the site on our own.  No excuses! Since they hardly plowed the road we lived on, if it snowed, which it did all the time after Thanksgiving, we were SOL.  It was like driving a boat to work as we slogged and fishtailed along, trying to stay within semi-visible ruts.  (We knew which way the road went so we figured we were on it if we stayed between the trees.)  Thank God I never got stuck.  Most of the main roads were plowed but on those icy days the road into the site was littered with cars sticking out of ditches.  From those abandoned cars paraded countless sailors, bundled up, walking toward the site hoping to make it to muster on time.  No one would stop to pick up these guys because everyone knew once you stopped you'd never get going again.  The strange thing was everyone seemed to make it into work, no matter what.  There were no wussies or wimps among us.  

Years later when I lived in Maryland I would panic when there was snow on the ground.  Hell, if we got more than an inch I'd stay home!  I'd often reflect then that when I was younger I was much tougher.  Hell, I even drove from Saratoga to Boston (my home of record at the time) in a blizzard, so as not to waste a single hour of my precious 4-day off.


A Modern Era EM:

Chuck Dyess

EE03, 1999-2003

"Skate 8"

Since I'm on a "memory kick," I wanted to add another thing about prototype.  I mentioned earlier that two of my roommates were assigned to S8G while my other roommate (Al Huff) and I were assigned to MARF.  I also mentioned before that my pal Al didn't make it to the fleet as a nuke.  After toiling for 6 months in Orlando and then another 6 months at MARF he failed to pass his second board.  This was a huge blow to both him and I since he also had orders to The Enterprise.  He was one of my best friends and we were very close.  He was pretty much adopted by my mom since he often accompanied me home during our 4-day-off breaks.  He also came home with me during our leave between nuke school and prototype--man, did we have some adventures that month!  (My mom was living in Boston then.) 

When I look back on it, Al pretty much gave up the day we arrived and he saw his name under the MARF list.  I admit I nearly shit myself when I saw I was assigned to MARF, too.  Everyone knew MARF was the toughest.  It was no secret that MARF had the highest failure rate of the four NY sites.  DIG and S3G had reputations for being marginally tough and S8G was known as "Skate 8," and everyone wanted to be assigned there.  

When things got tough at MARF (i.e., forget everything you learned in nuke school--'cause we don't have rods) it didn't help poor Al and I to hear how easy our two S8G roommates had it.  Their staff was "cool," and ours were total assholes.  Everything about MARF sucked compared to S8G.  Everything!

Earlier someone mentioned that all the prototypes were closed.  Is that true?  Even A1W and the other Idaho plants?  If so, where do nuke power candidates qualify on a real reactor these days?  

In 1997, when I made a pilgrimage back to Saratoga to attend Dicko's wedding (he was a chief on staff at S8G), the place had been thinned out of navy nukes.  D1G and S3G had been shut down and I believe the others were slated for the chopping block, too.  The Judge that performed Dicko's wedding told me that he didn't see too many sailors in his courtroom anymore.  A sure sign that things had changed and that there were fewer nukes around.

That was actually quite a nostalgic trip back to Saratoga for me.  I brought my wife and children with me and we made a vacation of it; the place was just as I remembered it during my prototype days.  It was funny to see the bars along Caroline Street again.  In 1997 there were few squids and mostly college kids but back in 1986 we squids were everywhere.  The college kids looked down on us but we didn't care.  

When I took my family out to where I lived in Middle Grove I was saddened to find my old house was gone.  I learned from locals that it had burned down in the early 90s.  From where my house used to be I drove to the site--somehow remembering the way, even though nothing looked familiar.  When I saw the D1G Ball again, a thousand memories came to mind.  I knew better than to drive onto the site so I turned around at the gate and drove away.  As I drove along the road leading away from the site I reflected on all the times Al Huff and I had walked along that road, hoping for a ride.  I told my wife about our sympathy walk and the day it was raining and George Dellamura stopped to see if we wanted a ride.  She laughed.  Ah, .... memory lane. 


The World's Longest Bus Ride ....

Hey Bill,

Your stories brought back some long lost memories of my time at prototype and the dumb stuff I used to do. I went to S1W in Idaho. Class 7502. I used to pal around with Claude McGinley, an EM from the Great State of Maine. I wonder whatever happened to Mac? Anyway, during the summer of '75 we used to have pretty regular parties at Mac's place. We drank an awful lot of beer in those days. By today's standards one might say that we had or were getting near to a problem. One day we got the brilliant idea to see how much beer we could drink BEFORE going in on a swing shift. I went over to Mac's place in the morning and we commenced to make his refrigerator a beer free zone. When the time came to catch the bus to the site, we got out there just in time. Of course you can guess the rest. Both of us had to piss bad before we were even out of town. Neither of us had anything to use as a container. Every agonizing bump in the road was magnified tenfold as we road in the back of the bus. One hour or so after leaving we arrived at the gate. It was a miracle neither of us pissed our pants. We were at the front of the bus before we stopped, waiting for the driver to open the door so we could get to the toilets in the guard house. we could barely make the walk. I swear we stood at the urinals for a good 5 minutes each. Maybe even longer. I think my bladder still has stretch marks.

Tom L.

Prototypes ....


I'm at work tonight ....outage time... and one of our relatively newer employees, mentioned to me that both the Nuke School and Prototype are in Charleston, SC. Somewhat ironic as that is my state. And that both are the one and only schools for the Navy. The reactors are 2 Boomers that were "sliced and diced" (missile compartments removed) for a SALT agreement
(can't remember which one). Also ironic is that I watched the cutting and rejoining of the subs in Bremerton, WA during the '78 and carry-on overhaul.  The world should sleep easier knowing that MARF, D1G,and all the other NY, Conn, and Idaho prototypes have been dismantled (or so I've been told). Regressing, what was the name of that strip bar in Saratoga... When we were leaving David Morgan found a stripper with suitcase in hand ready to report to the Big E with him... A year later we hear the same story from a new NUB (Ben Hunt) and its the same girl!! Good to hear from all the E gang keep sending in stories.

Rx Phil Foss 

John Baldwin, Coming Aboard!

Just found the website and I can't stop reading! It's been a few years, but the memories came flooding back.

ET1 John Baldwin, RC-23, 1997-2001 email:

I sent along a newsletter that Brian Hendrickson and I came up with while we were in the yards in '99 and morale seemed especially low. We were weekly for 3 or four months, and everybody loved "The Stab." We tried to keep it quiet, but I heard stories of everyone up to the RO ending up with a copy. Anyway, I thought it might be a nice addition to the site. If you want more let me know, I think I have copies of most issues.

John Baldwin 

(Click to enlarge)

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Dave Solomon Comes Aboard!

Great site! What an awesome time in all the ports on the 89 World cruise! It was a once in a lifetime experience.... No regrets... Currently working at the Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant in southern Maryland. 

Dave Solomon RM-14, 89-91

I sort of remember you.  (Your cruise book photo looked familiar.)  You would have been a nub down 4-plant when I was a short timer.  Now that you live in Southern Maryland have you become familiar with SMIBs? I used to have many SMIB contributors to my earlier Mooj newsletters.


A Boatload of E-Divr's

Dickson, Joshua, EE04, 2001- Present
Urban, Dan, EE04, 2001- Present
Henry, Paul, EE04, 2000 -present
Francisco, Derek, EE03, 2001-Present

Tony Perry Comes Aboard!

I served onboard Enterprise as a member of Reactor Laboratories division… I started out in the Radcon workcenter, became Group Supervisor for 1 and 4 plant ELT's, and moved up to Reactor Training for my last 18 months onboard. So I guess that makes my term on there RL Div 1999-2000, RT Division LPO 2001-2002. 

I served with Charles Wittkop, Timmy Tasker, Eric Hood, Erik Moll (as ELTs) and most of the other studs who fall into the 1999-2002 timeframe. I was onboard for the duration of Enterprise's involvement with Enduring Freedom, saw the free Garth Brooks concert, and got free tickets to Busch Gardens for my efforts.

Your site rocks… long live Half-mile island!!

Tony Perry
Currently serving at MARF, NPTU Ballston Spa.

Now that MARF is shutdown what are you doing there?  How many nukes are still in NY? 


Ah, Someone Cares About Me ....

Hey, KP-

I figure you must be really busy, or sick, or on vacation or something. Haven't seen anything new on the site for a while. 
Everything ok, buddy?


Actually I was on a mini-vacation.  I brought the wife and kids with me to S. Cal to help out my dad, who just had some knee surgery.  While in S. Cal I took the family by my old boyhood home and, of course, Disneyland.  As a lad I lived less than 3 miles from Disneyland so it was a place I knew well.  When I was at CSULB everyone either worked at Disneyland or Knott's.  I applied at Disneyland but got rejected.  I guess I wasn't exactly Disney material (I still have the Mickey Mouse rejection letter somewhere).  I had no problem getting hired at Knott's though.  Knott's was a much better place to work so I lucked out.  I had many friends that worked at Disneyland so a few Disney tales are embedded in my Mooj mutterings.  The letter about "Mr. Lincoln" molesting the sweeper is mostly true.  [Or, at least, that's what some guy that worked at Knott's told me.  He had worked at Disneyland and the guy that was supposedly chased by Mr. Lincoln ("Matt the sweeper") wound up at Knott's, too.  One day I asked "Matt" about it and he screamed and ran off in holy terror.  I was sorry for asking.]


The Ice Man Cometh!

Thanks for all your work to put this site together ... this is great. I stayed up all night reading all the stories.  I worked for GENE-fuels for a while but got out of the nuke business Never knew how crazy the Hippo really was till now! I recognized someone from the Big E at every N-power plant I ever visited for fuel inspections.

Please add me to your list:

aliased as John "Iceman" Dockbanger RC14 '80-'83

Looking for:
Peter Klevitch; John Warchol, Steve Wegner, Jose Flores, Andrew Barbee, Jerry Zelmer (Peach Bottom Nuclear Station)

Ponderings ....

I really enjoyed reading through The Weekly Stab (see above).  I'm glad to see the 90's guys carried on the tradition of amusing themselves despite low morale.  This, in my opinion, is what really made Rx and Engineering Dept. stand apart from the others.  It was the little things that added up to make each day livable.  This website is full of examples I guess!  


From an Anonymous M-Div'r

When I read the note about the pubes in Petrie's coffee cup, I almost spit my beer on the monitor. It seems most of you know him only later in his career, I knew him as a nub.

From what I remember, he was in Section 2 at nuke school, so he wasn't the brightest guy to start with, even though he was probably 7 or 8 years older than the rest of us. I didn't see anything of him in Idaho Falls, different crews and plants. I ran into him again in RT Div. He ended up as an M-Div mechanic in 3 plant and I sometimes saw him at picnics and stuff.  A nice wife, older like him and an out-of-control boy that didn't look anything like him. Duane was stocky and dark, the kid was gracile and light complected with lighter hair (might have been blond.) I don't know if any of you ever saw him pre beard ban, but the boy was just plain furry. If you stuffed his coffee cup with pubes, it probably just made him homesick for his beard. When I transferred off while the pig was in Bremerton, he had made MM1 and was Div PO (IIRC) and spending so much time on the ship that some other nuke was hanging out with his wife.

From what I heard, she stayed with him until he retired, then divorced him and took half his retirement. OUCH! Last I knew, he was a car salesman in Bremerton, those of you in the area might want to check out the local dealerships and look him up.

Anonymous M-Divver

Gulf War and Marf prototype commandos ...

I heard on the news the other day that sailors in the gulf were to stand down prior to the start of the war to get some rest. I wonder if I was the only one who thought that the RO on some of the nukes were thinking, "Hey with no flight ops tonight we can run two sets of drills!"  If it didn't happen I bet it was brought up....... 

I was one of the lucky ones to get Marf. I failed the electrical part of the 80% exam. Almost all the questions were on the water brake. I only needed one point to pass but couldn't get it. Had to see the XO, but didn't think I was in trouble as I got over a 3.6 on the rest of the test. Little did I realize.......ended up on mando hours until I qualified. One thing I picked up on at prototype was my lasting contempt of staff pickups. The sea returnees would cut you slack and would give you a few sigs on credit at the end of the week if you needed it. The prototype commandos were mostly jerks. I never wanted them in plant on the ship as they thought they knew everything and most ended up in RT as instructors or the M-Div office. Not all were bad. My favorite was Smith, a HUGE (as in a tad overweight) guy everyone called Smitty. He had a 17 year old wife and was from the deep south. My best Smitty stories were watching a guy read a letter in his cube sitting on the floor with his back against the lockers. After a few minutes he realizes that something is dripping on him. Looking up he sees Smitty's outstretched arm with sweat dripping from it. (It always was very warm in M-Div berthing.) That was good for a laugh for a long time.  Smitty had a nice car and loved it. He took us to the A's game July 4th (1985?) and we sat in the infield after the game to watch the fireworks. It was quite a show and afterwards got to the parking lot and saw that a lot of the ash and still burning embers had landed on his car. As we were all drunk we thought it was funny as hell. Thought Smitty was going to die...... Well good luck to all of you nukes out at sea and hope you get home soon...

JD, 82-86

I totally remember Smitty!!  He was often the PPWS when I was RE.  It was both a blessing and a curse to see Smitty on watch--a blessing because you knew he was cool and wouldn't give a shit about anything you did (like write in the dopeybook) and a curse since you knew he would park his ass on the SWGR floor and not move for 4 hrs.  You would then have to hear all his "stories."  He often told us about his young wife and how they got married (spent their honeymoon in his car broke in the parking lot of a Piggly Wiggly I recall).  He used to say when he got his re-enlistment bonus he was the richest man in his town and his teeny-bopper wife's parents thought he was a great catch.  Smitty was a great guy.  I have no idea what happened to him, though.  Anyone know?  


A-Gang Memories ....


Send me out a shirt, I'll wear it. If anyone out there knows the whereabouts of Tim Druck (2 planter back in the mid late nineties) or Mike Dyas, ELT from the same time period, let me know. Finally I've read thru all the sea stories and have gotten some ideas of pranks to play here on the DDG...

Being a GSM is alright, but cross-rating to get off the pig was in retrospect the worst damn decision I ever made. I'd just now be checking into shore duty if I hadn't done that. Oh well.  Been trying to remember some of the stuff that happened while I was on the pig, most of it escapes me, I do remember hearing about one thing though, The was a MMFN Pinero (hope I got the spelling right) that was standing water cunt-trol on the 95-96 cruise. About a month in to the cruise the Air Boss calls down and wants to wash planes. Pinero said no.  Well the Air Boss didn't like that so he went all the way up the COC getting the same answer, "What did water control tell you?" Finally when the AB got to the skipper (Malone?) he asked if he could wash planes, skip asked him what water told him and the AB said that water had told him no.  This really pissed off Mad Dog Malone, so the captain told the AB that for the rest of the cruise that whenever the Air Boss wanted to wash airplanes that he'd have to go ask FN Pinero personally if he could. Well Pinero being himself out of spite and total hatred of chowdales every chance he got told the AB no fucking way could they wash planes! I guess they had some dirty planes that cruise.

Another thing that comes to mind is a LT Dodson, A-gang DO.  He stood watch in 2 plant.  It seemed like whenever he was on watch for some reason or another 2 plant would scram out.  I guess he got the nickname "Scram 'em Bob" Can't imagine why.... 

Does anyone else remember FN Pinero? I think he was part of the Addams Family.  On yeah, another name to add to the memorial list, MM3 Jerry Simons. Good friend of mine, shared an aisle down in M-div berthing for a couple of years.  I remember the incinerator fire, I was on watch down in NR 2 Steering gear room.  Smoke started to come in the ventilation so I called central to report it, by the time I got off the phone and out to the booth the smoke was so think I couldn't see the door.  I grabbed the logs and ran.  Stupid me I went thru the RM berthing and was about to the top of the ladder outboard when I saw the flames aft, I hooked the corner and booked it out on the HB. Next thing I know I'm standing next to MM1 Dave Sullivan, he's in shower shoes, dung shirt and underwear holding his pants. So we do the next logical thing, go smoke. You shoulda seen the look on those airedales faces when he walked on the smoke deck with those leopard print bikini underwear! Oh yeah, I recall the guy with the big brown trash bag... If any of you guys hear about the "Baba-lube" incident on the West Virginia, I know that guy, he was my recruiter. (You know, the one the wiped the starboard main engine and KTB?) A few years after that he got de-nuked and eventually ended up on the pig up in the cat steam shop.  Any of you M-diver's remember the shit flood of late '97 the night before we had to get underway for hurricane Bonnie? The memory of Chad Myers standing SAP in civvies is still with me.  

-A-gang puke

The Press of Ignorance ....

I have spent last three hours trying to read through all the postings from the journalist "embedded" on the nuclear carriers. While some of the writings are not too stupid (one in Jerusalem Post was actually pretty good), not a single nuclear trained type has been quoted.

Anyone that sees or hears of a nuke be quoted might want to post a link here. I don't know if the powers at be fear what a nuke would say, or if the journalist never get that far down in the ship.

Cruiser ghost

Steve Wilson Comes Aboard ....

Dear King Paul, My name is Steve Wilson, former CMO in #4MMR, classmate/shipmate of Ron Ogan on your 70's list of former BIG E sailors. I would really appreciate being added to that 70's list. I also have a picture of a painting on 4 main's moisture separator painted in 1964 that we saved several times from the KKK {khaki klad kocksuckers}, which I need to have enlarged and would like to send to you for your archives. Please advise. My e-mail addresses are:, RIraider00 or . I'm anxiously awaiting you reply! 

[More from Steve .....]

Yo KP, It's me, Wilson from EM-14 again with a couple of notes: Loudermilk signed my qual standard on "E" and later worked at Chevron oil refinery in Richmond, CA with myself and other 70's "E" nucs; and Ross Welch was famous for awarding himself the Vietnam service and campaign ribbons after the fall of Saigon. I've got stories galore from the 70's on "E" but will have to read all the pages before submitting anything. I can also dig up some pictures from P.I. that should bring some laughs. Quickest contact with me for now will be 

Great to hear from you Steve!  Send your pictures to this email address.  I usually shrink them down to fit on the page or will use a thumbnail if it is too big.  Can't wait to hear some of your stories!!  


"Bainbridge development plan makes residents' tempers flare.."

Hey, all you Bainbridge NPS guys might find it amusing that people are fighting over the once hallowed grounds of your alma mater NTC Bainbridge (follow Link). I lived just outside of Port Deposit, MD for 7 years and never knew there was a nuke school there until one of my co-workers said he went there. I thought he was pulling my leg until someone sent me a patch from NPS Bainbridge. 


Jerry Anderson Comes Aboard!

My name is Jerry Anderson and I was on the Enterprise from 1981-83 and then again from 1986-88. I was a Forward Group ELT both times (RL Division). I would really like to be added to the list. Thanks

MM1 (SW) Jerry Anderson

I remember an Anderson in RL Div (blond guy with a big bushy mustache--was that you?) As always it's great to have another 80's guy onboard!  



Hey, in the three years I've been running this website, not one person has mentioned Captn' Lueschner.  Did he strike that much fear into your hearts that you won't even mention his name 20 years later?  I posted two stories about Lueschner in my Mooj newsletters a few years back.  One was about the guy who fell overboard and the other was about hitting Bishop's Rock.  I thought for sure someone out there would write in to confirm or correct those stories but no one ever did.  Oh well.... 


More About Prototype Commandos ...

JD hit the nail on the head when he described the prototype commandos.  Most were Star Babies, too, if I recall correctly.  There was one staff pickup, however, that was pretty cool.  It was RM11's Kevin Keeney.  I met him at MARF when I was a newly qualified student, forever standing "Auxiliary Electrician" and he was the eternal ERLL (or whatever they called ERLL on a submarine).  He was in the class ahead of mine and only one of a few rare staff pickups at MARF.  

I was surprised to see Kevin again when he showed up on the Big E sometime before or after the '88 cruise.  And, then, as if we were fated to be together once again, we both wound up at Cal Poly after the navy.  

In college we hung out all the time and since he was a bass player and I a guitar man, we jammed often.  We even played in a few bands together.  (Boy, do I have some stories about them days.....)  

Kevin was actually a great bass player--probably one of the best I played with at that time.  The funny thing was I never saw him play on the Pig.  There were dozens of guitar and bass players in RX dept and we jammed almost every night when at sea.  But Kevin was never among that group.  I later found out it was because Kevin had only "just" started playing bass. I couldn't believe it!  He was basically self-taught and could "pop" like a pro!  I think we both graduated about the same time (~1993) but I have no idea where he eventually wound up.  Anyone out there know?  


Leuschner, Hard Core Navy ....

I remember that guy honestly thought he could take the E into WW III and win it. The thing that pissed me off about him was those six hour- yes, six hour- GQs! I felt bad for the guys who got stuck in the plant for GQ, then would secure from GQ only to go on watch for another five hours! (Where there 5 and 10s on the '86 cruise?) I really couldn't complain personally because my GQ station was the RT void when he did that. I remember we ended up staying at sea extra days to qualify another carrier's air wing, and he sent the XO and Command Master Chief out to check out the morale aboard the ship. I was shooting hoops on the hanger deck and the command master chief came over to talk to us. Guys gave the Master Chief an earful. I think we cut the time a little short, but we still extended by a few day One more memory and I'll shut up. There was a Nub I had (Carroll I think his last name was). I had to write this dude up for failing to qualify BNEQ (He was in RT like 5-6 months) and for failing to keep clean. Guys were complaining this dude wouldn't change his sheets or take a bath. Leuschner had to ORDER this guy to take a shower. Captain's Mast seemed to be his least favorite task, and though he was hard on my nub, he HATED guys up there for drugs. Leuschner was hard core Navy!  


Dirty Laundry

What smells worse than a sweaty squids dirty skivvies? The same skivvies the day they returned from the so called "ship's laundry." During the 82-83 cruise, the laundry (which was just below RX berthing) was a frightful thing indeed. My clothes always came back wet, nasty, and smelling even worse than when they went into the laundry. I don't know if I was just lucky, or if everyone remembers this bane. So, we developed the infamous RARLL "chinese laundry."

Here's how we did it: once every other week or so (depending on how many uniforms you had) you'd stand your "RCER Proficiency" watch, which you would conveniently schedule a mids or 4-8 watch, which no one really wanted anyway. Then, you "procured" some di or tri-sodium phosphates from the ELTs (hey, it's just soap!).

In the 4 plant RCERLL sink, there was a piece of 1 inch mesh screen and a brush, which were used to scrub the clothes.  Rinse, wring, and on to the dryers. The dryers were just a rail someplace for the small items, like socks, skivvies, etc. Pants, however, needed to be tied off to the air supply ducts for drying to be completed before you got off watch. I can still 'em, legs flappin' away! I recall seeing a pair of pants in the bilge once that weren't tied off right. Careful, careful! Those seafarers will bitch up an eductor in no time flat! More than once, I got chewed out by a PPWO for "that damn Chinese laundry." Hey, at least the clothes were clean! One officer even asked if he could do his civvies down there, and I said "Who's gonna tell you that you can't?"

I hope someone out there has a picture of this practice! 


In the late 80s the laundry situation was no better.  I recall seeing many an item drying down in 4 RCERLL so the Chinese laundry was still in use in my time.  I also recall having to buy dozens of skivvies after each deployment  to replace the gray-blue mildewy ones I had to live with at sea.  If I recall correctly you could get a 12-pack of "no name" skivvies at the Navy Exchange for about 4 bucks.  Skivvies were pretty much disposable during the workup cruises.  

Since we're on the topic of laundry, does anyone remember those laundry rooms in the NPS BEQs?  Remember how people would do a load and then forget about it, thus, tying up a washing machine for hours?  Since free time was scarce many a person would take revenge on the inconsiderate bastard by tossing in dungarees with the guilty person's whites and then starting the washer over again.  Many a fight broke out because of that.  


More Laundry and Leuschner Memories .....

In 4MMR we had an actual washboard to use and wire strung up behind the DFT. I bet it was 140 degrees up there. When someone says laundry the first thing to come to my mind is pink underwear.

I had to really think when I heard "Leuschner," then it hit me: Wingnut! Amazing how you remember the nicknames..........


4MMR M/S Painting

Here is "The Stub." I think it was painted in 1964. We saved it several times by covering it with plastic and lagging cloth to preserve it. This picture was taken in late 1977 or early 1978. This should be enlarged to enjoy the details. As an added stimuli, guess what type of liquor the jug contained. Clue: check label on jug. 

Steve Wilson

Laundry & Shower Memories

We used to use the DI water from the RPFW system (hey, it was warm) to clean clothes and even grab an occasional shower during water hours. People wondered how the nukes always had clean clothes and looked (and smelled) fresh after watch.  Just a little TYGON tubing and a shower head tied right up to the cooler vent made for a great shower.

Will save talking about using the old DECON laundry in 3 plant for another time. No one could ever figure out why the level in the ODT kept going up. It took some quick talking to convince the upper echelon that the primary valves were not the culprit. It was the only way the BIG DOGS could justify raising level in the ODT. No one ever asked them to check trends on PZR level. They finally took the facility out in the early 2000s and made some sort of office out of the space.


Leuschner, Hard Core Navy ....with a wicked right cross!

I remember waiting for Mast one day on the Admiral’s Bridge. All the witnesses stayed up for all the festivities.

A young sailor was getting ready to feel the wrath of Leuschner … you knew he was going to screw someone when he looked over those half-glasses at the accused.

Anyway, before the Marine or Masters at Arms could react, this young sailor propelled himself toward the podium and the Skipper.

It happened so damn fast …. Leuschner must have sensed something. He laid this guy out across the podium with a right cross.

The kid slumps across the podium near unconscious … the Skipper sentenced him anyway and off to the Brig he went.

Speaking of tough Skippers … what about Rocky?

I remember he told the crew how much he hated thieves …. And if anyone was caught, that they were to be brought directly to the bridge. He added “if the accused fell down a couple of flights of stairs on the way up, so be it.”

Did enjoy his Watch Supervisor board though … spent about 45 minutes steering the great warship while he explained his theories of leadership and nuclear power. All that studying about 6-factor formulas and other assorted nonsense was wasted on that board.  


The Big Bust

Perhaps the biggest "bust" during my stint on the E was when some clowns got caught selling drugs out of the ship's store.  Actually, it wasn't the main ship's store (the one up by the foc'scle) but that little compartment near the aft mess decks, where one could buy toiletries.  The place was only open a few hours a day and there was usually only one guy in there selling stuff through a window.  The bust happened after we left Mombassa (1988) so the storekeepers must of had some good shit.  (" ....  I'll have some soap, shaving cream .... and an 8-ball of hashish....")

When these guys were busted they were immediately shackled and paraded up to the flight deck for the next flight off.  "VW" was scheduled to fly off that day (I can't remember why ... some training thing) and when he took his seat in the S-3 he didn't notice that the two other passengers were in chains until he was halfway to Diego Garcia.  He almost shit his pants.  


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