Letters, Random Memories
and Assorted Sea Stories (Cont.)
William Noll Comes Aboard ....
Please sign me up:
William Noll (ET2) RC-11 Division 1986-1989
Employed at Palo Verde Nuclear Generating Station since leaving
the 'E' Radiation Protection Technician (an ELT without dealing with
Dozens of other ex-'E' Navy Nukes work here also….
Note: Hey Bill! I remember you! Another
Arizonan! As soon as I get back off vacation (next week) I'm
gonna set up a date for a get-together at my house in Phoenix.
I'll shoot for the first or second weekend in November. All will be
invited, even those living outside Arizona. I have no idea what's
going on with the "Big" Reunion (so don't ask).
James Puckhaber Comes Aboard ...
Hey King Paul,
I'm not certain we crossed paths on the Big E, but
we have a short overlap of time when we were both on there. Thanks
for starting and keeping this website going. Please add my name and
info to the Big E roster:
James Puckhaber RM3, RM23 1983-1987 Single_Track@excite.com
Mikey Bowman Gets a New e-Mail addy ....
Last note to all my Loving friends........E-Mail
address has changed...this one will disappear very soon...New one
........See you there...MikeyB
Rich Brady Has Passed Away
Just heard from an Ex-Big E buddy that Rich Brady,
RE Division & RX Admin. 1965-1967, passed December, 2003. He's
listed on the roster.
Okay you landlubbers..... It's time to start
celebrating our adventures. A syndicate is being formed and
all contributors to this website are officially included in that
great association. We are now, most likely using a nom de
plum, about to begin writing a fictional (ha!) narrative about a
bunch of nukes and engineers sailing on the Big E. This book
has the working title of Catch 65. Either (or both)
Steamer or myself will act as principal editor and begin compiling
ideas. A forum website is about to be initiated (much like
Critical Thinking) to organize our many thoughts and
plotlines. I will link to the URL from the Critical Thinking
More to follow .....
Well, I'll Be
Finally! I finally got back into this
website. I ain't even gonna try to tell you about how my hard
drive crashed, my new hard drive got wiped out by every known virus,
.... etal .... plus I took a vacation ....
On top of all that this website now exceeds what
is considered stable for Microsoft Front Page (my HTML editor) to
edit. Sometimes it takes me hours to access the damn
thing. Oh well. But I'm back. I was able to
retrieve some lost emails and such but hopefully most of what you
guys sent in after 10/4 was stored in the Earthlink Ethernet and I
finally downloaded it. If something you sent within the
last few weeks doesn't follow this message, re send it. PP,
please resend your "Mike and the Magic Glasses" story, as
I know for a fact I lost it in my hard drive crash.
Bruce Prehal Comes Aboard ...
Please sign me up. I think my Nuke class was 7408
and I went to AIW prototype. I was a 3-plant RPE from 75 to 79. I
got out while we were still in the yards in Bremerton.
My name is Bruce S. Prehal
My E-mails are:
Remembering CC Smith
A bunch of us '70s guys believe we served under
the finest man to ever wear Khakis. CC Smith was a very unique
officer. I think most who served under him would agree. We've put
together a tribute and would appreciate your posting it on the site.
Would you also add his list to those shipmates that have passed
Carol C. Smith
April 9, 1974 - December 10, 1976
the last year, a bunch of us Big E nukes from the mid 70s have
been getting back in contact via E mail. You just gotta love
all these years, one of the things we still have in common is
our respect for our first "Big E" C.O. Capt. Carol
C. Smith. Though it's been over 25 years since we served under
him, we still speak highly of him and his leadership. Capt
Smith believed in working hard and playing hard. But he also
believed you had to do the former to earn the latter. He was
very big on accountability. He was both respected and liked by
the crew. We affectionately referred to him as "Country
Chuck" due to his strong Alabama drawl. Everybody had
their favorite CC story. He was one of those rare
individuals lucky enough to become a legend in his own time.
Vice Admiral Smith is no longer with us. He passed away on
October 14 1983 in front of his home on Admirals Row in
Norfolk Va. He was always an avid jogger and died doing what
he loved. We felt compelled to share a few of our favorite
stories of the finest C.O. any of us can remember. (I can't
think of anybody else we'd do this for.)
CC Smith to me was an inspirational CO; despite countless
foul-ups setting condition Zebra during GQ, he always
encouraged us to do better without yelling at us. He would
also steam like a true sailor, sometimes having to be poured
out of a Guerrero taxi on Leyte pier and have to dragged up
the officer's brow. When he inspected 4MMR after we painted it
baby blue, he calmly said to paint it over, no ass chewing,
which was a relief as l was there to see him inspect (which
took about a minute). But my fondest memory of Cap'n Smith was
the speech he gave over the 1MC before we commenced launching
air strikes against the NVA for the Saigon evac; he basically
told us we were all professionals and that all the practice we
had undergone was now to be put to use, so let's get busy.
May he rest in peace.”
his party on Grande Island, I was pretty well on my way to
being 10 sheets to the wind. I told C.C. that even
though I was only a second class petty officer I would like to
shake his hand, congratulate him on becoming an admiral, and
tell him how much I appreciated serving under him. He
shook my hand and proceeded to explain to me that I was not
"just" a second class petty officer. He
treated everyone as an important person. CC didn't
demand or command respect as most C.O.s did, he earned it from
everyone I know that served under him. The Navy would be
a far better place with more leaders like him. “
seem to recall reading somewhere on this site that Capt.
Smith’s incoming change of command ceremony was streaked.
Whoever wrote that will be happy to learned that his outgoing
ceremony where he handed over the keys to Capt. Austin was
streaked as well. CC got it coming and going!”
evening in the South China Sea, flight ops were over for the
day and I was one of about 15 people watching the sunset at
the bow of the flight deck. It was a beautiful evening, a
beautiful sunset and people were speaking in hushed tones. I
traded several comments back and forth with a chief who was
standing slightly behind me. After a while I turned around and
saw that I had been talking to Capt. Smith. I must have just
called him "Chief" at least 5 times. I then said
something stupid like "I'm sorry sir, I didn't mean to
call you "Chief"". He looked at me and
said," That's OK son. I take it as a compliment. I know
who really runs this ship." One heck of a C.O.”
Cap'n Smith and his early exploits in Hong Kong? He hit it
hard for a couple of days before his wife flew in for the
remainder of our inport period... I remember once the Captains
Launch docked at a pier near where several of us happened to
be and all of the "Babes" that were with the
Skippers steaming buddies....."
was a great Captain who knew how to be just like all of us
without all the officer airs about him. You knew he was the
captain and he was respected but you could talk to him. There
was always a story of him turning up somewhere with other
sailors at a party or some other activity. He was a hit and
popular no matter where he was. He was a sailor’s sailor
kind of like a people’s mayor! We all knew what we had lost
when Captain Austin took over for him. Kind of like Senator
Benson's line to Senator Quayle during their debate "I
knew Jack Kennedy. Jack Kennedy was a friend of mine. But I
can tell you one thing, Senator, you're no Jack
aren't too many people that we served under that are
remembered in the same light as Captain Smith. I still have my
Shellback certificate hanging on the wall in the room I do my
leather work in. It has Captain Smith’s signature on the
bottom. Glad it was him and not Austin that signed it."
RM friend went AWOL for two weeks in Olongapo in ’74. When
he came back to the ship, he had to go to Captains Mast with
CC. The Captain instantly recognized him from the previous
month when he had presented him with his Good Conduct ribbon.
He was ready to cut my buddy some slack until he found out he
had come back to the ship while AWOL and picked up his
paycheck. The Captain told him basically, “I admire your
tenacity Son, but now I’ve gotta do what I’ve gotta do.”
Nevertheless, he stopped short of throwing the book at my
know a story of a PPWS (EM) load dispatcher (that remains
nameless because of too much mojo I suspect) that reportedly
pulled CC from a ditch in Singapore (after a few too many)
after which they bonded and spent many together bending elbows
/ tipping glasses in PI. My hero! Always had the best tan on
the ship too! "
we pulled into Hobart in '76, one of the main hangouts was a
place called Hadley's in the downtown area. One night Capt
Smith was there steaming with a bunch of the fly boys. Their
table got a lot of attention from the local groupies. One
particularly stunning gal was going around the table asking
each officer what it was he did on the Enterprise. When she
got to Capt Smith and she asked what he did on the Enterprise,
he looked up at her, and with his Alabama drawl said,"
Lady, I AM the Enterprise!" I bet they don't make C.O.s
like that any more."
at what we have written, we have to admit : Nobody in the 70s
would have ever believed that we would one day write kind
words about an officer. None
of us were exactly “Joe Navy” and we don’t recall any of
us ever being up for “Man of the Month.” Nevertheless, we
just had to share our respect for this individual. Life aboard
a carrier (especially for a nuke) will never be a piece of
cake, but the chain of command can go a long way to make it
better or worse. CC, we thank you for your inspired
Phillip Berkness Comes Aboard ....
Phillip, Berkness RC-Div, 1978-1980 email@example.com
An Anonymous Story ....
Great site !! I laughed until I thought I might blow a seal !
Reading all these wildass stories brought back many memories of my
time on the PIG...Like the time we were all sittin around before
muster on the signal bridge...oh yeah I forgot to say that I was a
lowly signalman and not a nuke but here goes...There we sit, waiting
for the chief to make it up to the shack, to a man hung over to the
max because this is the PI... Well one of the fellas (who shall
remain nameless) was lamenting his dripping dick and at the same
time ripping the chief a brand new a-hole for any and all sins the
lifer had perpetrated against him...well it was suggested that if he
really wanted to do the chief in why didn't he just "leave a
deposit" on the chief's cup...After all, the chief never dined
on beaver so to speak and wouldn't it be fine to see him with clap
of the throat...well of course we all fell out over that one being
the degenerates we were and all agreed that we would never tell
...SQUID'S HONOR !! Well sure enough dood goes ahead and snatches
the cup, whips out charley, and gives her a good old swabdown, and
replaces the cup... Not 5 seconds later here comes old chiefy
sauntering in CPO style, one hand reaching for his beloved cup , the
other tugging at his ass crack... It was a one handed fill up and he
sucks it half down in one slurp! I mean there was not one guy who
could actually stand up we were laughing so hard... Chiefy looks at
us rolling on the floor and gets this stupid look on his face like
he told a good joke or something and says "What?? Whasso funny?
What the f--- is wrong with you guys?" Well what was so funny
showed up 2 days later when the chief could not read the order of
the day because he had "laryngitis"...
Next time I'll tell my homo-onboardus story , that one's a hoot !
PS. KEEP MY EMAIL PRIVATE THANKS
Mike Anglada Comes Aboard ....
I'm another ex-nuke from 2 and 4 plants. I was an
RM from 1978 to 1982. Please add me to the list. I liked the Navy so
much I went to school after my Enterprise days and came back to PSNS
as an engineer for the last 16 years. email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks, Mike Anglada
Bill Guyton Comes Aboard ....
I was on the West Pac cruise in 1974/1975. I
worked in the number 3 plant. Do you know if anybody has the plants
patch. The mouse holding a wrench which was on the DFT.
Ok, so I do live in Vegas.
Item 1; Don't worry about the heat. It doesn't
usually show up until after May. Besides, you go from the
air-conditioned plane to the air-conditioned taxi to the
air-conditioned hotel the air-conditioned casino..."It's Dry
Heat man!".. Get the picture... besides who's awake in the
daytime in Vegas???
Item 2; Unless you want to take a taxi everywhere
you want to go, and spend big bucks on everything from food to
gambling then stay away from the new strip with the mega casinos.
Those places are designed to keep you in the building. It sucks to
walk somewhere else. Their machines are much tighter too! You want
to look at the old strip, Fremont Street. Try calling the
Fitzgerald, The Golden Nugget, Binion's Horseshoe (on TV),
Californian, Main Street Station, or Four Queens. All of those
places are next to each other at the Fremont Street Experience (The
covered light canopy). They have two pavilions that have free live
bands on Thursday through Saturday nights. It's kind of a zoo like
atmosphere with street vendors and tourist drunks roaming around
with drinks in their hands. They also have the "Meal
Deals" (cheap beer, cheap nik naks, 99 cent shrimp cocktails,
steak & lobster, etc), paint can artist, and a gentleman's club.
Everything is less than a 2 minute walk, depending on how fast your
walker rolls. It's about a $20 taxi ride from the airport. It's also
very close to the other finer establishments like
"Cheetah's", and "Litl Darling's". You know the
sayin', "What happens in Vegas, happens at Cheetahs". You
can carry your drink anywhere you want to go, and there's no last
Item 3; The hotel should reserve a block of rooms,
negotiate a fixed cost, and arrange for a meeting room. Everyone can
call in and make their own monetary arrangements. Some hotels even
have a bus service from the airport. Most club's also have a bus
service from the hotels.
Item 4, Normal Las Vegas travel days for incoming
is Friday, and outgoing is Sunday or Monday on three day holidays.
Avoid those days if you can. Avoid them like the plague if your
driving. I've seen the traffic stopped in the middle of the desert.
I've actually seen people BBQin' on the median of I-15 150 miles
from nowhere, and the cars 3 wide, bumper to bumper 60 miles long
not moving. No shit! Save your penny's and "Fly on a
Bird", even if your only going 400 miles. The drive home from
Vegas is murder!!! The shit nightmares are wrote about. Picture this
"Party your ass off, become a total night owl, then in the
middle of the party drive home with the worst hangover you ever had
in your life. With 300,000 people who just did the same thing"
Here's a few websites to check out.
Dan G. Davis
"Skip" Donham Comes Aboard
I just discovered your Enterprise tribute site. Very nice! It
brings back memories. I remember you and many of the guys in your
pics. Who could forget The Stohlman! I think I'm gonna cry. Anyhow,
you can add me to your list.
Chris "Skip" Donham, EE30, 1986-1990.
Good job on the web site,
PS. I always wondered what happened to my bro John
"Troll" Lemaster. Any info? I don't see him on your list.
Note: Hey Chris ... I remember you. Were's your buddy
McGinty these days? No word from Lemaster yet. We'll find
him soon enough I hope.
Mike and The Magic Glasses ....
Sometime in '76 1 MMR got a new non-nuke MM. His name was Mike C
and he came equipped birth control glasses and a great sense of
humor. (Remember those Navy issue glasses with the ugly black
plastic frames? They were called "birth control glasses"
because no one except Buddy Holly, and later Elvis Costello, ever
got laid while wearing them.)
Sometime on the 76 cruise, Mike decides he wants to get laid some
place other that the P.I. He figures that a stylish pair of glass
would greatly aid this effort. It was a well known fact that the
China Fleet Club in Hong Kong was a place to get good glasses at an
affordable price. You would get your eyes examined, pick your frames
and then your glasses would be mailed to you about a week later.
When we pulled into Hong Kong Mike went with Al Crew to the China
Fleet Club. While waiting for his eye exam, they went to get a bite
to eat. Seems that they each had a few too many beers. Mike then got
his eye exam, picked his frames, and paid his money.
A week or so later, Mike gets his glasses while we're in the
South China Sea. He puts them on and to his dismay they're a little
blurry. Mike figures he's wasted his money as we're not going back
to Hong Kong that cruise. Back in Subic, Mike takes his new glasses
with him one evening when he goes steaming. For some unknown reason,
he puts them on after steaming for a while. BINGO! Now they're
From then till I left the ship in '78 Mike would constantly
repeat this routine. You could always tell whether Mike had been
steaming by which glasses he was wearing. We referred to them as his
" steaming glasses".
I know what you're thinking : Is this medically possible? We
frequently asked this question ourselves. I'm not an expert on
alcohol's effect on the human eye. (Well, except for the fact that
the more alcohol one consumes, the better the women in the bar
look.) All I can attest to is this was Mike's routine, and we
observed it more times than we care to remember.
(By the way, I think "Catch-65" is an awesome title for
a book about our exploits. Mega-kudos to whoever came up with that
Mark B Does some garage Cleaning ...
Found these in the garage when cleaning. Anyone
Note: Hey Mark, don't throw them away! Let's keep them for
our soon to be organized Big E Rx/Eng Dept. archive. As many
of you know several of us have been toying with the idea of organizing
such an archive for old cruise books, dopeybooks and patches.
T-shirts should also be included. As of yet no one has volunteered
to organize this archive (hint hint) but it would be nice to get
Old Cruise patches (198?) From Mark B.
Hey, MMFN Pontnack (Tack) is still a nub, don't
let him fool you. GET QUALIFIED NUB!!!!
MM1 (SS) Brubaker (Formerly)
Annual BBQ and Semi-Sober Beer Fest!!!!!
Okay you Arizona old Timers (and those
living near enough not to be frightened by a half-day drive) I'm
having my first ever house party!
Where: My House in Phoenix
When: Saturday, November 13, 6PM til ?
Who: anyone looking to share in an evening
of BBQ and beer (limited inventory to dissuade drunkin hijinks:)
Please Email me if you are coming and need
directions. Wives welcome!!!!
I only have one guest room so first out-of-towner
to respond gets dibs on it. Lots of local motels in hotels
within stumbling distance of my house (if your willing to walk 6
MMCM "Devil" gets new Email
It's another wonderful day in California and
wanted you to know that after all these many years of using dial-up modem,
we have jumped in the the age of Broadband Internet. For us
"Country Folk" way out here in Dunnigan, CA our only
option way the "Southern Sky" and DIRECWAY
Have had Direct Satellite TV for almost 7 years so
just makes since for us.
Connection speed is pretty good for a regular
customer ( business accounts get faster speeds for more $$$ ) like
ourselves.........~600 to 700 kbps down. The up speed is much slower
but hasn't been a problem for us yet.
Anyway, new email address's are:
Brandon Johnson Comes Aboard ....
Brandon Johnson, EE22& EE11, 1984-1989, email@example.com
Note: Hey, I totally remember you!
Trick or Treat!
October 31 1977. I was at a party on Versailles Ave. on the
eastern side of Alameda. There were about 10 or 12 Enterprise nukes
standing around the kitchen smoking and joking. The door bell rang
and someone went to answer the door. It was a bunch of kids trick or
treating. We hadn't realized it was Halloween and didn't have any
candy. It was kind of embarrassing.
Now, normal people would have sent someone out to get some candy.
That's not what happened here. If it was, there'd be no reason to
write this story. We searched around the apartment for something to
hand out. John discovered a shit load of ice cubes in the freezer.
Someone else discovered a bunch of brown paper lunch bags. What we
did was fill each of the lunch bags with a handful of ice cubes, tie
the bag shut and put it back in the freezer so the ice wouldn't
We spent the rest of the evening taking turns answering the door
and handing out the bags. About mid way through the evening, it was
my turn to answer the door. Standing in front of me was a cherubic,
rosy cheeked lad of about 4. He was dressed as a pumpkin and his
(rather attractive) mother was standing right behind him. As I put
the brown bag in his trick or treat bag he looked at me in wide eyed
awe. He must have thought he'd struck the mother lode. His Mom said,
"Now thank the nice man Jeffery." I patted the kid on the
head, told him he was welcome and sent him on his way. (I'm not
really proud of that.)
Sometime well after 10 PM we got our last trick or treaters. It
was two kids in their mid teens. Their "costumes" were
shitty, they were out too late, and they were too old for trick or
treating. We had 4 bags of ice cubes left and I gave each of them 2
bags. As they watched me put what seemed like a half pound of candy
in their bags, they didn't even have the common courtesy to thank
me. When they left, several of us sensed what was going to happen
and went into Burt's bedroom and opened the window. This was right
above the stairs. Sure enough the kids couldn't wait to open up
their loot. I still remember hearing their reaction. "It's ice!
It's ICE!! Those assholes gave us ICE!!!!" I collapsed in a fit
of laughter. I didn't feel (nor have I ever felt) the least bit
guilty about that shit.
Shortly after that I left the party to go steaming on Webster
Street. When the guys who lived in the apartment woke up the next
morning, their place had been seriously TP'd and egged. There was
never any doubt that those 2 adolescent dick heads were major
players in that.
HFH (Happy Halloween) PP
Help From a Shipmate ....
Hey you fellow nuke types,
If any of you guys who are getting out would like to be able to
directly email Operations or Maintenance Departments about getting
jobs in the Industry just drop me an email.
I have the emails to all the Operations Managers, Plant Managers,
VPs et al. Note you'll never be able to find these on your own. (In
fact my offering them is quasi unethical but I'm a nuke LOL)
What I won't send is a master list, because I don't have one. I
do have a search engine that will get me the addresses.
What I would need is the plant or company you're interested in.
I work rotating shifts so you'd have to give me a few days to
answer, but I will help out my nuclear brethren (and sistren too!).
The offer is always open to anyone on this site.
When I was getting out of the Navy we went to a school that
taught us how to get jobs. One thing they advised is never go
through Human Resources. Send your inquiries to the Top Dogs, EVEN
if they don't read them they do pass them down to the appropriate
departments (again usually bypassing Human Resources). When the
department gets the email or resume it's stamped from the Higher
Managers office. They figure he's recommending you so when they hire
a new class they usually will interview you. I got 17 job interviews
this way when I was getting off, and 17 offers. The methodology
still works because I was looking to change plants and all 5
companies I sent resumes to at least contacted me.
You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Adam Hutchins Comes Aboard ....
Hello, I saw your big E Rx and Eng page and I'd
like my name added to the list. My name is Adam Hutchins, and I've
worked for RC-11 (1 plant ET) and RX-40 (reactor DC division) from
2001 until I get out in 2006. You can list my email as email@example.com.
Wesley Nick Comes Aboard ....
Hey, Wesley Nick checking in. I was with RM-22 from 96-2000.
Please list my email under firstname.lastname@example.org,
The Champs ...
I am not sure if I sent this to you or not, but
after the world series, I recalled when we won the softball
championship in the PI against all airdale teams. It was so great to
beat nothing but airdales that year. A few of us then went over to
play the basketball championship against Supply division. We ran out
of gas after playing the softball championship earlier in the day
and ended up losing the championship game. Not bad for a bunch of
guys who rarely saw the sun. They underestimated us nukes. Here's
the photo of the 1984 Big E Captain's cup softball
Remembering Another Shipmate ....
My Dad was a nuke machinist mate and did two tours
on the Big E when I was a kid. He passed away 12/04/2001 at 8:00 pm
after a long bout with the consequences of smoking.
His name was Jim Williamson, Jr., MMCM (SPCM)
Ret. I would appreciate a mention IN MEMORIUM on your site
because he was a nuke, an engineer, a shellback, and lived the Navy
way for the entire time I knew him. He could fix anything, grow
anything, and build anything.
I've attached a link to his obit and the card I
sent to the ceremonial detachment thanking them for the honors at
his funeral. Your site is as fitting a tribute to a true Navy man
like dad as I have found. I miss him terribly.
He's in a bunch of the cruise books and has a lot
of plaques and certificates from the Enterprise.
Arizona Bash '04
Hey all you salty dogs living near Phoenix, don't
forget about KP's First annual BBQ on 11/13/04. Looks like
we're gonna have a great turn out. I haven't heard from all my
Arizona brethren so I'll email as many guys as I can that haven't
responded yet. (Hopefully I won't inadvertently forget someone
in the Phoenix area). Call me on my Cell Phone for directions to my house. The San Miguel goes
on ice about 5PM!!!
Hong Kong '74
It was 30 years ago this month that us 7401 guys hit Hong Kong
for the first time. We had already been in Subic twice and we
wondered what Hong Kong held in store for us. Since we were still in
RT, on the morning we pulled in we had nothing better to do than go
to the flight deck and watch as we entered the harbor. Pulling in,
anchoring, and the ferry ride in to the pier were all memorable. We
had been hearing of Hong Kong all our lives and now we were there.
During one of our first days, Willy and I took a Special Services
tour of Hong Kong Island. They put about 40 of us sailors aboard a
(then) modern tour bus and we set off to see the sights. Victoria
Peak was cool. Great pictures and view of the entire harbor. We
visited Tiger Balm Garden, another great place for picture taking.
As we were leaving Tiger Balm Garden I remember remarking at how
unique our surroundings were. (Ancient Chinese intimately mixed with
modern skyscrapers.) Willy suddenly spies two dogs boffing on our
side of the bus. Willy points and yells, "Hey look! Two dogs
f**king!" Here we are surrounded by all this exotic scenery,
yet everyone rushes to our side of the bus to see the dogs.
Literally thousands of dollars of newly purchased Canon and Nikon
photographic equipment went into action taking pictures that could
only be titled "Two dogs f**king in Hong Kong". (Typical
For lunch, we stopped in Aberdeen and went to Tai Pak floating
restaurant. (It's been in a bunch of movies over the years.) I had
never had Chinese food before. The first thing they brought out were
fried prawn appetizers. They were GREAT! I stuffed myself not
knowing that seven courses were to follow. Each course was better
than the last. I could only sample a little bit of each since I had
gorged myself with the prawns. All in all, a meal I will never
In the afternoon we stopped briefly at a place called Repulse Bay
and we all got off the bus for about half an hour and had a chance
to get a quick beer and a snack. Over a beer, Willy and I had one of
those "defining moments" that friendships sometimes have.
We reflected on our shared experiences at NPS and prototype. We
somehow ended up confessing things that ticked us off about each
other. We both had a good laugh over the petty little shit that
would drive the other one crazy. We came to Repulse Bay as mere
"buddies" and left less than an hour later as best of
friends. (Funny how that shit happens.)
The tour ended about 5 PM. We were dropped off by Fenwick pier.
We decided to try our hand at Hong Kong steaming. It was good. In
fact, it would have been considered great if we hadn't been recently
spoiled by Subic. Willy and I ended up in a tattoo shop called Pinky
Lo's. I had two tattoos since "A" school. Willy had none.
In a drunken conversation in Saratoga Springs, Willy and I had
pledged to get tattooed together if we ever met up in H.K. This
seemed unlikely since I was destined for subs and he wanted a
carrier. (Well at least one of us was right.) We decided to each get
a dragon on our left deltoid. To this day, when I look in the mirror
while shaving I see the results of that evening. It was November 22
1974. We remember it since it was the anniversary of the Kennedy
assassination, a date that our generation will never forget.
That first Hong Kong visit is one that will be with us always.
PP (P.S. Veterans Day greetings to all. A special note of thanks
and support goes out to those still serving.)
Cruise DVD ....
I happened to be surfing for Big E stuff on the
internet and came across on Ebay a DVD of the 2001 Big E Med/Arabian
Gulf combat cruise. As you're no doubt aware, the Big E was held
back from returning from the Med and was the first combat ship to be
deployed in response to the 9/11 attack. If anyone is interested,
the seller can be reached at email@example.com;
I have no idea how many he may have available. It's about 2 hours in
length and arranged just like a cruise book although no names or
pictures of each of the crew. Not the best quality but a very nice
recording of what takes place on not just any supercarrier but the
Big E, at sea/combat and on some pretty nice port calls. By the way,
the Reactor Officer at that time was a Captain. No other department
head had higher rank than Commander. When I was aboard in mid-60's,
our Reactor Officer was a Commander. Has the Navy upgraded the
importance of the position? Just curious.
Los Dudes ....
As Most Know... The KP family made a pilgrimage
back to the homeland last month to visit the In Laws and Out Laws
.... Below is the latest Photo of Nitro and I. I'm the
one with the less than respectable hair;)
A Peek Back in Time
My boyhood pal recently sent me some old photos
that he scanned. Some were photos that I had sent him while I
was in the navy. Below are vintage pics of the notorious
"EMFN KP" (most likely taken at GLakes). The second
photo was taken right after I arrived on The E in the winter of
'86. No doubt I was gundecking instead of doing my RT quals;).
The last photo was taken on my wedding day in 1993. Many of my
groomsmen were ex Big E mates. (Far left is Nitro; 3rd from left is
"Q"; 2nd from right is Dicko).
From Pat Hoban:
Saw this today and thought it fitting to add to
PS - any word on the reunion?
From "These Good Men" by Michael Norman:
I now know why men who have been to war yearn to
reunite. Not to tell stories or look at old pictures. Not to laugh
or weep. Comrades gather because they long to be with the men who
once acted their best, men who suffered and sacrificed, who were
stripped raw, right down to their humanity. I did not pick these
men. They were delivered by fate and the Military. But I know them
in a way I know no other men. I have never given anyone such trust.
They were willing to guard something more precious than my life.
They would have carried my reputation, the memory of me. It was part
of the bargain we all made, the reason we were so willing to die for
one another. I cannot say where we are headed. Ours are not perfect
friendships; those are the province of legend and myth. A few of my
comrades drift far from me now, sending back only occasional word. I
know that one day even these could fall to silence. Some of the men
will stay close, a couple, perhaps, always at hand. As long as I
have memory, I will think of them all, every day. I am sure that
when I leave this world, my last thought will be of my family and my
comrades.....such good men.
Note: Happy Veterans day to All! I am proud of many
things; but most of all of being a Big E sailor. Only about 70,000
men on this earth can lay claim to that.
far as the reunion goes, I don't know. If this Las Vegas thing
doesn't materialize soon I'll just have our first official reunion
in my warehouse around Spring Training time. We can drink to
our heart's content and then wander aimless into Diablo Stadium
(which is up the street a bit). Don't forget about KP's 1st
Annual BBQ on November 13! If you're in the Phoenix area, stop
in. Things will get hopping about 6PM.
Photos From Scott French!
Sorry I have been pathetically lazy about trying to send these
photos. I will try one at a time. I think it will work. I hope that
all will enjoy. I think that Dan Raya was the photographer.
snf aka : midwest mongrul/wet rat/stomach that ate San Francisco
Note: Thanks for sending the pics Scott. Man, I forgot how
most of us were wogs on the '86 cruise. Thank God Big Dave
Conklin was a wog or he'd a put a hurt on most of us smart ass
Below is a photo of those attending the first ever KP
Left to Right: Mark Groseclose, "KP," Terry Gardner,
Kevin Doyle and Jay "Bongo Bill" Robinson.
The aftermath ..... (This was all the beer that was
consumed. I guess we are getting old!)
It's just a guess, but the patches displayed by
Mark B represent consecutive port calls on the '82-'83 Westpac. Do I
win a cookie?
10/26/04 (I found this in one of my
mailboxes, sorry for delay in posting)
Robert Issa and Rick Niemeyer Come
Robert Issa 1 plant M-Div 1988-1990 firstname.lastname@example.org
Rick Niemeyer RM-23 1988-1991 email@example.com
Note: Hey I remember both you guys! Since you're on the
Vinson, you must be real close to retiring.
Good to see the pictures of your barbecue. The picture of the
empty San Miguel bottles tells a story. I'm sure you can remember
back when that many bottles only signified a "warm up" on
base before heading across the river to do some real steaming. Those
of us in our forties and fifties just can't do that kind of steaming
anymore. Time passes and damn few things stay the same.
I don't watch a lot of drama series on TV, but one show I do like
is JAG. Maybe I like the nostalgia of destroyers, aircraft carriers
and such, but it probably has a lot to do with my hots for Catherine
Bell. When I watch this program with friends, they frequently ask
how real some of the situations are. Usually when I answer, I have
to qualify it with "In my time". I understand things tend
to change in 25 years. Here's a few things that always give me pause
when I watch the show :
* The pilots wear all sorts of personalized helmets. In our day
all pilots wore the helmets of their squadron. If you were in VF1,
you wore a VF1 helmet, and that was that. Has this changed?
* On the show all planes take off with afterburners lit. In our
day the only plane to do this was the RA5-C Vigilante. F-14s only
took off with afterburners for the rare air show. Has this changed?
* Here's the one that really gets me going. On the show, all
doors on the ships are marked WTD or NWTD. In our day watertight
doors MAY have been marked WTD. I can't clearly remember, but I
don't think so. I know they were marked with material condition
(X-ray, Yoke or Zebra). I also know that non watertight doors were
NOT marked as such. Has the "dumbing down' of the Navy reached
this level? If it doesn't have 6 "dogs" around the edge,
if it looks like the closet door on a mobile home : IT PROBABLY
AIN'T A WATERTIGHT DOOR! What's up with this?
Shawn Steele Comes Aboard ....
My name is Shawn Steele. I was on the Enterprise
from 89 to 93 in RC23
please add my name to your web page.
shawn steele firstname.lastname@example.org
Odds and Ends ...
Enjoying the site.
You remember the “5” valves, of course. They were the large
air-motor operated main steam cutout valves for each reactor. You
weren’t supposed to open them at any faster then ¼ turn per
second (?), or so, I think, when bringing the reactor on line Or
maybe it was ½ turn/sec, who knows.
Anyway, I have the -no kidding- label plate from 1MS-V5B which I
“acquired” when they decided to install large plates over the
handwheels of these valves to cover up the spokes of the valve
handwheels. (Something to do with keeping us poor ignorant squids
from sticking our limbs/fingers/heads through the spokes of the “5”
valves just in time for it to go shut automatically.)
Also, I’ve sent along a pic of the nuclear lightbulb patch, not
sure where/when/who I got it from, but I thought it was cool. The
other patch, most of us will recognize.
RM-11, RM-22, RT, ‘79-85
EM Div 95-97
|Michael Thomas has
New Email Addy:
Please update my e-mail
Michael Thomas, RC11, RC14 1991-1996
Did y’all have a reunion? I haven’t looked at
the site in over a year.
Note: Nope, no reunion yet. If this Vegas thing doesn't
materialize in a few weeks I'll set up something in Phoenix in the
early spring. I'll also include a better Reunion board that will be
linked to from the index page (before, it was linked to a discussion,
which didn't go anywhere.)
to Reunion Page Here
Jim McNamara Comes Aboard ....
Stumbled on your Big-E site very accidentally.
Please add me to the ' 70s listing. Thanks much.
Jim McNamara, M-23, ' 71-' 75.
EBay Has Some Cruisebooks For Sale!
Arrgh! has spotted a few cruisebooks on eBay. There's a
74-75 (item 2287847650) and an '86 (but I won't give out item number
so my pal blue Lou can win it). At any time, there is usually
one or two cruisebooks for sale. Keep a look out for the ones
your missing (if you were one of those anti-navy slugs, who didn't
buy one and now regrets it!)
Ron Mitchell Comes Aboard ...
Just stumbled on your site, it's great. Please add
me to your e-mail list. I'm Ron Mitchell, I was in M-Div. 4MMR from
Feb.69 to Aug. 72. My e-mail email@example.com
Your site brings back a lot of memories and I see a few shipmates
are listed. Carl Deaville was a MM2 in 4 plant, Jim(Triple J) Jeisel
a MM1. Frank (Roco) Capano was also in 4 plant for a while. I was
CMO on sea trials in 4MMR after the 71 refueling and can tell you
the old girl did 50+ knots with Rickover at the helm. It was said in
the old days "God brought the sun critical and Rickover signed
his qual. card."
Power and Light was Right ....
Was thinking about that light bulb patch, and I
seem to remember that we ran ass-backwards shore power to Tacoma or
one of the Washington cities after some disaster or other in the
early 70's. Maybe somebody remembers the particulars,.... or maybe
not, and you'll have to believe me, which you should......
A Shout Out To Ron Mitchell ....
RE: Ron Mitchell
Hi Ron, I was a RO in 4 plant when you served.
Don't remember a lot of you steam side guys cause you were always
hot and sweaty, even though I spent a lot of time tweaking on Boiler
level and the feed flow sensors. I remember you got a new chief that
made you shine the brass controls right behind SGWLCP. Do you
remember Billy Malm (Thor)? You got to contribute to the site. We
are reactor side top heavy and we need more AMR stories.....
Home Computing, Circa 2004?
This looks eerily familiar...........hippo
(Click to Enlarge)
ram, I have been checking into conference centers in the Vegas
area, and with out a firm date, they cannot give an accurate quote
on room rates or availability. most how ever are very interested in
the thought of entertaining a couple hundred x-squids for the week
end. the cost of the conference rooms at most places are included
with a sit down or a buffet dinner, as long as there are at least
ten. personally spring 2005 sounds great, prior to march 10, after I
have a refuel outage (about 7 weeks). so lets set a firm date and do
some planning. I am more than happy to organize the thing, I just don't
want to pick the date. can you conduct a poll on what works the best
for the most guys...........let me know...........
Nicole Guess Comes Aboard ....
Engineering One Plant, 2000-2001
Note: Is it possible? Are you our second official Big E
female snipe? Send us some stories!
Tyler Montgomery Comes Aboard ....
Just read the stories on your web site regarding
the Big "E". Please add me to the list of those who served
on the "E". First served in 67 & 68 in #1 RxAux and
then 71 through 74 in RM div and then as Group Sup of 4 MMR. Was a
ENC and converted to MMC in 73.
MM1 Lindermann, MM2 Docherty , Linthicum, and
McGuire. What a crew they were. Then there was a MM named Leak. The
first day he reported to 4 plant I received a call that there was a
big leak on ERUL. You can imagine my surprise when the leak turned
out to be a very large MM.
The Aux steam reducer in #4 plant went on the
blink. After several rebuilds of the regulator it still did not want
to regulate properly. As we closed the Xconnect with #1 plant the
pressure gage showed the pressure drifting low then high. About that
time the pressure spiked high then low and high again. Upon asking
the ER what was going on the reply was "Lindy" tweeked the
regulator. What this meant was he smacked the valve with a 10 pound
sledge. You guessed it the darn valve began to regulate pressure
correctly and worked fine the rest of the cruise.
During a lite-off I noticed the wardroom messmen
apparently cleaning WR2 carpet. In actuality the feed water dump
tank was overflowing through the vents. Apparently #1 plant had the
makeup feed valve bypassed and kept taking on makeup feed and the
feed water dump valve kept dumping excess feed water into the dump
tank. The WR2 messmen were really trying to dry out the carpet that
had been floating on a couple inches of water.
Does anyone remember the "pink" buttkits
in #1 MMR. Seems the MPA kept telling MMCM Adams to have the
buttkits painted. After several coats of paint a second CPO was
requested to witness the painting. As said CPO entered #1 ERUL the
problem became apparent. the MMCM was colorblind and the #1 plant
MMs kept painting the buttkits every time they were told but rather
than light gray they kept painting them pink. The MPA and MMCM had
many unhappy discussions until the problem was found.
I remember how hard it was to protect the painting
on the moisture separator. Also the two forward guide pins for the
LP turbine were just the right size to hold a SNCC (standard navy
coffee cup) and keep the coffee at a good drinking temperature.
Anyone remember the standing orders that gave
CPO's head of trash dumping line (Early years when almost all nukes
on the "E" were CPOs)
Did a tour of NPS Bainbridge 75 and Orlando 76-78.
Then a tour on a SSBN. Retired in 83 after 21 year 3 month 15 day.
Tyler P. "Monty" Montgomery MMCS (SS) TMONTGOMERY6@tampabay.rr.com
Smokin' Joe Comes To Town!
One of the greatest things about this website is
that it puts me in touch with all my old pals! Last night I
met and had dinner with the legendary Smokin' Joe Miskell. Joe
was in town for a business trip. Joe hasn't changed a
bit! Below is a current picture of us. Joe is now a tax
Mark McHugh Comes Aboard ....
McHugh, Mark RL Div. 1989-1994
Mark McHugh, C
Back at ya Hippo:
Hi hippo, like you I don't remember a lot of Rx
side guys, but at our age we are lucky to remember our own name.
Hearing Billy Malm's name reminds me of the time I was CMO, Billy
was feed pumper, Quiet night, Billy bets me 5 bucks he can put a
dent in the file cabinet with his head. Billy backs off about 10 ft.
lowers his head and runs into the side of the file with the top of
his head. He bounces off the cabinet, has a cut on the top of his
head, but sure enough a big dent in the file. Billy gives me that
little dry laugh of his as he takes my five dollars. The chief you
remember was BTCM Falor (yes kiddies they use to let BT's be nuke's)
He made us chip the paint from all the copper and brass lines on the
main air ejectors and polish them. When we was in the yards during
the refueling in 71 he had all the removable deck plates galvanized.
When we went back to sea he found out when they got wet they would
turn dark. As you remember we had a plant inspection every Friday by
the Capt. one week and the XO the next. So every Friday morning we
were on our hands and knees with wire brushes and citric acid
shining the deck plates. This was just the start of his madness.
Greetings From Someone We Should Know
Just thinking (normally a time consuming and dangerous thing)
To all: I just got off the phone with a buddy that served onboard
at the same time. I told him to look up this site and read the
various inputs from so many people who look at things with a
different outlook on life now than ever before. Bottom line is I
would like to wish a Happy Holiday to all, yes ARRRRGH, you too, and
send along a personal photo (check out the eyes) with best wishes
for the New Year.
Someone you know.
Bill Hilow Comes Aboard!
Hey Ramrod! I stood watch in 1 plant mostly. I was an E-div'r
that ran the switch gear. I currently work with Lenny Meyer @
Genentech here in SSF.
Check out the Iranian Navy website. http://www.iinavy.org/
I personally think the sacrifice that we made was huge and for
the most part overlooked. Here is a shot of me in e-div berthing 88
cruise I think. Jeezuz, we made enough of them. Every year seems
Note: Bill! I totally remember you. I can't remember
how many watches we spent together (I recall it being in 4 SWGR
though) but it was many. I forget what we talked about but we
spent nearly the whole watch doing it. Weren't you the
guy that got flown off to fix one of the motor generators on a
British frigate (that was stuck dead in the water)? (If I'm
wrong ignore me.) Great to hear from you again after all these
Before I end this page I'd like to share a photo
someone sent me. Us Big E nukes never saw anything like this
but I'm sure all you tubers did. I get cold just looking at
End of Page
Grab your Swabs,
Green scrubbies, buckets and follow me to Page 35