Page 58

Kevin Brown Comes Aboard

[email removed by sender's request]


KP Note: And a fine howdy do to you too. Maybe you can take this site over since you know how best to do it.

Thanks From an Air Force Veteran


I served in the air force. I love reading military sites and think your Enterprise Site is one of the best. My dad served in the navy and I relayed some of the stories I read here and he thought it sounded pretty much like his times too. He was on the USS Valley Forge (CV-45) during the Korean War. I told him I'd buy him a computer and hook him up to the Internet so he can read stuff like this (and other navy and historical stuff) but he says he's too old and wouldn't do it. Because you pleaded with us to download your free book I did. I enjoyed it very much. Especially the Depak Chota detective stories in the last part. They were very well written and very funny. Many of your shipmates write in to tell you thanks for all you do so I thought I would do so as well.     

Wayne Howard, Alexandra, VA



Remembering Eric Sauerborn

Hey King Paul,

It's Memorial Day and I was reflecting on my buddy that we lost way back in 1986.

Eric and I went to Nuke School and Prototype together. We had a blast together, especially in Saratoga Springs and a long weekend down to Ocean city, MD. He took us to where he lived in Lutherville, MD and introduced all of us to real Chesapeake Bay crabs. But mostly just picking me up for Prototype in NY, Ballston Spa with a large coffee on a cold day.

I remember exactly where I was when another buddy of mine told me that Eric had died (I went subs, San Diego). Anyway, I wish I could somehow let his family know that he's not forgotten this Memorial Day. And that he has shipmates that remember him all the time.

I think I still have some photos buried away in my old Navy-days stuff.

Anyway, great job keeping up the site. I simply googled his name on a whim, and there it was. Thanks.

He will always be missed, but not forgotten.

Kevin Murphy Houston, TX USS Guitarro, SSN-665, 1985-1989, Nuke MM2/SS


KP Note: Thank you for your letter, Kevin. Please share your pictures and other memories when you can.

Mike Cagle Gets New Email Address

New address is


KP Note: Thanks for the update, Mike. By the way, somewhere in the Nuke ether is my old LD qual card with a ton of your sigs blazed upon it:)

Arrgh! Climbs out of His Hole ...

Mr. Hager...

don't remember you, bro... musta killed those brain cells...

Lt Schlong got his nickname for winning a bet with another ET (who shall remain nameless... besides, just because Mike Hassell was runner up doesn't mean he wasn't an impressive figure of a man). Uh oh... did I just tell his name like that? hehehehe

The ET that drank the mung was Ben Hunt... yeah, I witnessed both of these incidents... however, nobody was allowed to view the "contest" but the contestants themselves. I also recall that Lt. Schlong was a Frank Zappa fan. 4 Plant forever!! Best place to serve out a 6 year sentence.

Arrgh!! RC-14 (1980 - 83)


All Dark!

I was the on watch CMO in 2 MMR when the Big E had "heavy silting" (officially we did not scrap the bottom) in OCT 05. I became concerned when our TG went down and when ERLL vented its circ water pump and nothing but mud came out. I went back upstairs to watch helplessly as the main engine went down. Then Central called for the scramming of all 8 reactors and I stood in the dark for a minute. Boy, it was eerily quiet and dark, scary. But the funniest part was after it was all over. My LPO Joe, at the time was in ERLL babysitting our brand new ERLL watch, a guy we called Wendy. As the vacuum dropped Joe asks Wendy what he should be doing and Wendy says he should charge the loop seal, so Joe tells him to go ahead. About the time that he opens the valve they scrammed all 8 rx's. Joe says when the lights came back on Wendy was so pale and quickly shutting that valve like his life depended on it and asks Joe, "did I do that?!". Joe says yes, Wendy, you shut the whole place down with that one valve. After that Wendy was afraid to touch anything, it was hilarious.

Joanna McClellan (Strifler)


Dig That!


I looked at the few entries for page 58. Thank god you have guys like Kevin Brown to keep you squared away and tell you how to run your website.

I think you are handling it quite nicely.

I thought you might find this image of an old Rx prototype containment being fabricated. This is clearly one of the very old ones based on the cars seen in the construction area. Do any of you know which plant this is? I am thinking NPTU NY (D1G). Any thoughts?

Have a good one.



Rx-060709-cont.jpg (154708 bytes)

(Click to enlarge)

KP Note: That is definitely the D1G Ball. Does anyone know if this structure still exists? 

The Decommissioning Of Our Ship

I just got an email that began:


Before I get to the reason for my email, I'd just like to say you have created one of the most enjoyable websites I have ever had pleasure of viewing. I know it has to be a time consuming endeavor, but be assured it is most appreciated...."

The sender asked that the rest of letter be kept private. The letter comes from someone very important in the upcoming decommissioning, inactivation and final disposal of our Ship. He noted in recent pages that a number of people are very interested in the decommissioning and attending the ceremony. He has volunteered his services as a point of contact to keep me informed as to what is being planned, as well as the details of the ceremony. He thinks that having a group, or groups of Big E vets attending the ceremony could be a nice part of the whole celebration.

At this point I think we should begin collecting our names with the hope that all of us will be allowed to attend the ceremony AND receive whatever dosimetetry or clearance is needed to allow us one last "log tour" of our respective engine rooms. I'm hoping Chief Mark Best will volunteer to be the main interface. Mark if you contact me I will provide you with the name of the man who has contacted me.

Thank you to all those who will help in this effort!


Travis Young Updates His Email Address

Please update my email address to and if you could please add ANOTHER tour to my name EE30 91-95, EE04 98-03, RE00 06-09. When I retire next month i will have served 12 years and 1 month aboard the BIG PIG. The people made it worth it!


Travis Young


DIG Ball (and other things)


Just wanted to respond to your inquiry about the D1G Ball. If you check out and put in West Milton, NY, you should then have no problem finding the site. Not sure when the photos were obtained, but the D1G Ball is indeed still shown. You can (if you like) even go further and go to street level as if you were driving back to the site again (although you can't get as far as the parking lot). The resolution of the pictures are pretty lousy as is to be expected for a sensitive site.

Also, please count me in as a fellow sailor that wants to attend the decommissioning. What a gas it would be to tour the plants again and find some old graffiti that I squirreled away in a very discreet location, or to make one final trip down to Star Alley and gaze in wonder at the incredible display. (Special thanks to Rich Mandia for showing me so many years ago) Geez, I think I might still have a ratty old towel that has 91F stenciled on it. Oh, to see my old pit again…

Finally, Kevin Brown can jam it. You're doing a great job on a labor of love KP and I wouldn't want it any other way. Thanks for all that you have done and continue to do!!!

Bill Patric


KP Note: It was pretty interesting seeing the street view of our old drive into the site. Too bad the two female protesters that were often standing there with signs and flowers in the mid-80s weren't still there. I know I mentioned this on this site (or someone did-- maybe Kevin Brown can use his modern analytical skills to find it) there was local folklore in Balston Spa that when the D1G ball red light was on (you know, that red light that warns low flying aircraft not to fly into something) it meant that the navy was secretly refueling a nuclear sub that had made its way through the intricate underwater tunnel system that connected West Milton with the Hudson River. I know you laugh (round eye) but more than a few of us were asked by natives if this was true. I speak for all of us when I say that the rumor was always confirmed. On a related note (and I again apologize if I spoke of this earlier on this site) when I was at Cal Poly I had a math professor who I often visited during office hours to go over the partial differential equation stuff that he was teaching. I noticed he had on a gold RPI ring. I asked him if he went to RPI (in Troy, NY) and he said that he did. I told him I was stationed near there when I was in the navy. He asked why the navy would have a base in the middle of NY state and I told him it was a secret submarine refueling site. I can't remember his exact words but they were something like: "No shit? I think I heard something about that."    

Mark Clarke Gets New Email Address

Can you update my e-mail address. Mark Clarke 1980's


Big Ball, Cont.


The ball containment structure was also used at Dresden unit 1. I believe it’s currently used as storage.

Larry C


Saw KP on TV


Saw you and your bandmates on TV Saturday night. You guys are pretty good for old farts.

Steve J.


KP Note: Thanks, Steve. I'm glad someone saw us. Who you calling an old fart? I look half my real age thanks to my wig and false beard.

A GIFT FROM ME TO YOU (big deal)

On a smoky, smoldering hot Arizona night in early June The P-Mooj took the Sail Inn crowd by the ears and did unspeakable things to them. Not a person left unscathed. This was on odd night for The P-Mooj, as they performed as a trio (minus Richard Chavez, the better guitar half of the frolicking foursome). This aural episode would have been lost to the ages had not someone (me) taped it. Rather than toss these tapes to the ash heap I will upload three of the songs here. Those that value good taste and dignified indulgences should download these songs at their own risk.


Olongapo City Limits


I'm So Glad



Where and when will the decommissioning be held? I'm sure the info has been posted here, but I'm too lazy to look for it. Hey what can I say, I'm a guv'ment worker.


PS: Kevin Brown can suck it. Suck it hard!


KP Note: For now I will post all decommissioning info here. As of now I really don't know anything other than I will be there wherever it is. In the very near future someone (hope not me) will put a semi-official decommissioning site.  

To Quote Chief Mark Best: 

"I just can’t believe we are actually talking about this …. I thought the old girl would last forever …. maybe parked next to the USS CONSTITUTION in Boston.."



Retirement wasn't how I planned so I accepted the life of a contractor in Iraq. Pay is good but the neighbors suck. Funny how things go. Here I had promised myself I'd never come back to Haji Land. Nice view of the oil refinery though.

Toots to Mark McHugh, saw him back on page 55. Glad to see he got his CHP designation.

Saw references to the BIG E being decomm'd early. Count me in. I can imagine some tasty beverages and hopefully some debauchery to send her on her way. Hopefully I be back CONUS for this...but now a Gripe or Gripes. Time to get back to naming CVNs correctly....lot of names available..such as Lexington, Yorktown, Saratoga, America and eventually Enterprise. Can't figure out the current trend.

All be safe out there

Schmidty RL 90-94 LCDR, SC, USN(ret)




Read with interest on this site about the upcoming decommissioning of our old ship. Wow, makes me feel old. I still remember the feeling I got back in September of '74 when I first reported aboard. I just couldn't believe how big the damn thing was. I remember the ship celebrating her 13th birthday on our way to the P.I. for the first time. I thought she was pretty old back then and she wasn't even 1/3 her current age. Pretty damn impressive, if you ask me.

Nobody would have believed it back in "the day" but some of my buds and I are actually considering going to the ceremony. After all the bad things we said about her, we're actually reaching that era of our lives when we look back at our time aboard in a rather wistful way. Funny how the passage of time erodes the bad memories, yet polishes up the good ones.

Hopefully there are plans to let her retire in same dignified way like making her a floating museum. (I'd pay to see that.)



A Shipmate, Arthur Thomas Martin, has Passed Away

My name is Chris Martin and my father Arthur Thomas Martin passed away on May 2nd, 2009. His rank was E5 and he was a hull technician. I also wanted to know if you had any pics of him you could send me.

Thank you so much,

-Chris Martin

KP Note: If anyone has any photos of HT2 Martin, send them to me (and his son) so I can post them.


Keith Heimbold Comes Aboard

I was on the Enterprise from 1988 to 1991. I was a SRO/RO, ET2, Westpac, World Cruise to Newport News. I live in San Diego and would like to reconnect with my old shipmates. 

Regards, Keith


KP Note: Keith, if you live in San Diego come see my band perform during the Buddy Blue Tribute CD Release Show at the historic Spring Valley Inn on July 18th! 

Mark J. Johnson Comes Aboard

Please list my name Mark J. Johnson RM Division 4 Plant 1974-78. I heard about this from Ron Ogan. 



Wanna Hear P-Mooj on Radio playing Buddy Blue's Lonesome Hound? 

No? Whatever.


 Just scroll to “guest Lance Richardson”


Here is a link to the Adm. Gary Roughead (CNO) request for decommissioning of the Big E:

The 11-carrier requirement is based on a combined need for world-wide presence requirements, surge availability, training and exercises, and maintenance. During the period between the planned 2012 inactivation of USS ENTERPRISE (CVN 65) and the 2015 delivery of GERALD R. FORD (CVN 78), however, legislative relief is needed to temporarily reduce the operational carrier force to 10. Extending ENTERPRISE beyond 2012 involves significant technical risk, challenges manpower and the industrial base, and requires expenditures in excess of $2.8B with a minimal operational return on this significant investment. Extending ENTERPRISE would result in only a minor gain in carrier operational availability and adversely impact carrier maintenance periods and operational availability of the force in the future. The temporary reduction to 10 carriers can be mitigated by adjustments to deployments and maintenance availabilities. I request your approval of this legislative proposal.


Iran Then

Hey Ram,

I was reading the latest update and thought about our little go 'round with the Iranians during Operation Praying Mantis and found some more info on it. Here is a link to a site for a book that recounts the story and has a short video from Navy News talking about the operation about 2 weeks after it happened. Hope some find it interesting.

Sorry I missed your show last night, I was on call. When are you guys playing in the Valley again. I would love to get out to see you. Thanks.

Kevin RM-14/RM03 1987-1991


KP Note: Yeah, Kevin! Haven't seen you in awhile. We need to hook up again!

George Hults Changes Email Adress


This is George Hults, RC11, 84-87. Please update my email to the following:

Thanks! George


KP Note: Hot damn, George! When you going to send in all your sordid sea tales?

Rob Harris comes Aboard

EM1 Rob Harris (delayed EM1 for more years than I care to admit!) I served on the Big E from 1989-1996, RE-Div for the entire time (6 1/2 long years) Started as 4 plant RE and after the overhaul ended in 1 plant.

Please add me to the list and let others know my email address.



KP Note: Then you would have been one of my nubblets just as I was bailin' out...

Shipmate John Harvey promoted to full Admiral... 

See the links below to Harvey's new responsibilities as Commander - Atlantic Fleet.

Navy Vice Adm. John C. Harvey Jr. has been nominated for appointment to the grade of admiral and assigment as commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command, Norfolk, Va. Harvey is currently serving as director, Navy Staff, N09B, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, Pentagon, Washington, D.C.

 Jules J. LaMontagne, ETI, West Pac '74, RT/3 Plant... aka Don Julio la Montagne de la Vega... now happily lost in the Caribbean...


Mel Denton Comes Aboard


I just discovered your site last night and was literally LMAO until 3AM! So many names and things that I had forgotten about...I can't believe it's been 20 years. I would be honored if you would add my contact information to your site.

I will come back soon and add my own comments regarding some of the stories I have read, but someone that I thought of right away was Mike Bowden. He slept in the rack above mine and I often mentioned to him how I admired his Christmas lights. Eventually he gave them to me, and shortly after that he died. Still chokes me up to think about it. May he rest in peace, Amen

God bless Ya'll,

Mel Denton


KP Note: Melvin! I remember you very well!!!! I can't wait to hear your tales!

SAY WHAT? You forgot to watch the P-Mooj on the Indie Music Phoenix TV show?

Well, then you're in luck, chumps... er, I mean champs. The show clips have been added to YouTube. 

Song One

Song Two

Song Three

Song Four

Song Five

Song Six

Song Seven

Song Eight

To be honest I had no idea I was so good looking until I saw myself on TV. See if you agree. 

Also, because I knew my Big E buds would hate that I wasted a golden opportunity to showcase my Big E nuke heritage on television, I did (your eyes are not deceiving you) tape a large zucchini to my inner thigh under my jeans. 


Help Support the Lulu Blue Seigal Fund

This is a fantastic CD and I'm not just saying that because we're on it. If you loved the music of Buddy Blue, this is a must for you. If you are in San Diego JULY 18, 2009 be sure to catch us with the rest of the bands on the CD at the Spring Valley Inn!!!

Mark Kram Comes Aboard

I was a Big E Nuke in EE-30 from Dec 2000 until April 2004. My name is Mark Mark. I went to 'A' school (Electrician) and Nuke School in Orlando. I went to Prototype in Windsor, Ct at the DOE S1C facility. My nephew Timothy Mark was also a Nuke ET in ther late 90's until becoming a sub. supply officer. I did not re-enlist so I was an EM3. Thanks.

Mark Mark


Looking for Lt. Petterino

Hey KP,

Do you know if anyone has contact information regarding Lt. Petterino? I believe he was on the "Big E" roughly between 1983-1987? BTW, I was in an Indian restaurant in Tajikistan last summer, and I think there might be a copyright violation of some of Mujaputtia Umbababbaraba's promotional materials (there was the very familiar bluster about enlightenment, super vitality). Here's the link to the restaurant if you're in the area. I recommend eating before raising the issue of plagiarism, the food's pretty good. (Link

Mark Budzinski RC-23 1983-1987


Scott French will be There at The Decommissioning

Decommissioning sounds fun & sad all at the same time. I'm interested. Maybe we can get Decomm hats. I do have a CVN-72 Plankowner hat.

Scott French


Goldmine Show


I did a Google street view of the Spring Valley Inn. Holy Shit!!! You better be packing more then just your zucchini for this gig!



KP Note: I will! I'll be packing my stratocaster! For all you losers friends out there who collect P-Mooj Posters and memorabilia here's another one to add to your collection:

Miss The Show?


Though I live in San Diego I cannot attend your show. I wanted to more than anything. I even took the day off from work. But my wife just informed me that she is leaving and taking the kids back to Oregon. That really sucks. Almost as much as missing seeing the Psychedelic Mooj play live. But anyway I guess I'll be driving up to Oregon this weekend. Rock out!

Steve K. 


KP Note: Sorry to miss seeing you there, Steve. If I had any T-shirts left I would have sent you one.   

Charlie Kotan Comes Aboard

Please add me to the site. Fantastic! Lotsa grins! Thanks, KP!

ET1(SS) RC-3 RO/WS 76-78

I pinged Ron Ogan RM-3. Sometimes chat with Don Bassey (RC-3), who plays with Paul Burke RM-3 (who made MMC for sure). Saw Rod Heideman RM-3 some years ago. I went to Steve Shupe's (also RM-3) 50th and last birthday some years ago. RIP, you crazy SOB.

Charlie Kotan


Shipmate Adm. John C. Harvey, Jr., takes command of U.S. Fleet Forces.

Rusty Hart and Jeremy Clauser Come Aboard

Great site! Here's some adds for the roster page:

Hart, Rusty RE23, 2000-2003 working at North Anna Power Station in VA

Clauser, Jeremy RE23 & RE01, 2000-2004 on the USS GW now

Thanks, Rusty


Idaho Reunion

Just checking to see if any one visiting the site went to the Big "E" reunion in Idaho. Got any pics? 

Thanks, Dan F.


A link to post on KP Site:

Dave Ramsay Comes Aboard


We spent some time together, though I was in EE30.

Skip Donham told me about your site. I can’t believe I burned up three hours looking thru postings of crap we all swore we hated. It must have been better than we gave it credit for at the time.

It is nice to hear so many are doing well. I have run in to a few guys. Doug Shaw when I was in power plant business. Speak to Ross Marquis often and some others.

Thanks for your efforts at keeping the site up. I feel a bit behind at just discovering your site and it has been up for years. Of course I buried a lot of memories.

Dave Ramsay (OGRE)

USS Enterprise


1987 - 1991

KP Note: Ogre! I remember ya well! 


Ross Marquis Comes Aboard

Hey thanks for putting this site together!! Nice to be able to get in touch with people.

Ross Marquis 

EE30 1987-1991


KP Note: Wow! Another EE30 bud! Glad to see you finally arrive, Ross!

Jim Tarkowski Remembers Don McKracken

.... to see Don McKracken's name under the deceased listing on the front page. Don was a friend of mine, even though I was 4 plant and he was 3 plant, (Always remember - pushing 1 pulling 2 and 3).

Mel Craig and I were going to Sacramento for the weekend for the Jazz Festival and I remember asking Don to come with us. (usual - drink - get fucked up - walk around - look for horny women.) yep - squids

Don said - nope - gotta stick around get my taxes done, maybe next time.

Later = Truthfully, I felt like SHIT when the MPs had dogs sniffing around his rack on Monday morning and then to hear the story about his departure (passing). Damn that sucked. Here was a good natured guy who joined the Navy to be in the crows nest and be wasted. Allot of us lived that in one way or another....but, not with our life.

He was a good guy I have not forgotten...

Jim Tarkowski


Frank Davies Finally Checks In


I have been reading this site for several weeks now and I am amazed how much I remember.

Some of these stories. Good or Bad, Right or Wrong, She Is Enterprise and I would not do her

Any other way.

  ’81 to ’85: Fwd Gp Sup, RC14 WCS


KP Note: Frank, you are famous from what I recall. I'm sure you have been mentioned in here somewhere.

David Gronow Comes Aboard

Yes, cool site!!! Please add me to the list, 

David Gronow 

RM-23 and RM-3 1985 - 1989.


Gerard Trahan Changes Email Address

This is a notification of change of e-mail for Gerard Trahan MM2 aboard CVAN65 68 to70 #4 plant new e-mail is

thank you. Jerry


Greg Merrigan Comes Aboard

Great website. you can add me to your contact list.


Greg "Catfish" Merrigan EE30 and A&O Shop 1981 - 1985


TJ Webber Changes Email Address

Please update my e-mail with Didn't realize that my really old e-mail address was listed.


TJ Weber RM-14, RM-3 1978-1983


Bugis Street


The other night I was talking to a co-worker about Singapore, as he is planning a visit there soon. Here's some of the conversation :

Singapore is probably the most beautiful city I've ever visited. (No doubt it's the cleanest.) Evidently, the city's founders realized that despite their best intentions, some shit just had to go down within the city limits. They set aside a small area of the city known by it's main thoroughfare, Bugis Street. The basic operating principle behind the area was, "You can pull whatever shit you want on Bugis Street, but keep it out of the rest of the city."

Every night around midnight, the queens would come out and cruise Bugis Street. The queens were essentially transvestites beautifully dressed and made up. Some of the most beautiful women I've ever seen were, in fact, probably men. More than one Big E squid was tempted to "take a walk on the wild side."

Once we pulled out of Singapore and headed back to the South China Sea, most of us nukes got together and compared notes. One of the RM-11 guys was a crazy MF known affectionately as "The Rock". Rock shamelessly bragged about taking one of the queens back to his hotel room. All other conversation stopped as we listened to Rock relate his "adventure".

Rock had a room in one of the fancier hotels. As Rock and the queen rode the elevator up to his room, Rock decided to get his money's worth and get a head start on his exotic oriental experience. He had the elaborately dressed queen get on "her" knees and give him a BJ as he casually drank a beer. The elevator stopped before it got to Rock's floor, and the door opened to reveal two middle aged couples dressed in formal evening attire. Rock let out a self-satisfied chuckle as he described the look of horror on the two ladies faces. Rock said he raised his beer bottle in a salute as the elevator door closed.

Once in his hotel room, Rock got several more BJs from the queen. When Rock finished telling his story, the crowd sat in stunned silence. Rock seemed almost offended by this reaction and asked WTF was up with that. At last someone spoke up and said something like, "Rock, didn't you know that was actually a guy?" to which Rock said matter of factly, "Of course I knew!" Someone else spoke up and accused Rock of being a pervert. Rock took offense to the accusation and responded in a defensive tone, "Hey, I never let her take her dress off and I didn't see what was down there. So technically it don't count as perversion."

Now, who the f**k could argue with logic like that?



KP Note: I certainly wouldn't disagree ... What was it about those RM guys anyway? Whenever I hear a story like this it is always about an RM:) 

Eric Peterman Changes Email


Change in email: Now

Please add listing as 'Eric Peterman' to 80's list (along with Estes, changed my name while I was there to avoid certain messy.. well, no need to go there)

Also add me to the 2000's (2001 - 2004). (EM01)

Eric (Bones)


Bonhomme Richard Sailor Stops By

KP, Just wanted to send you an email and say thanks for all you have done to put this site together. I was in navy on USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) until 2004. I think this is the best navy site I've ever seen. Sadly today's navy is nothing like the navy you and most of the other participants on this site knew. I don't know if that is a good thing or a bad thing.





Going through some stuff and came across this. As I recall this could buy a local beer in the day and was worth about 20 cents. Along with that, you could buy a great meal for about 4 or 5 dollars American in PI.



Looking For Jerry Petro

Hello there,

I am contacting you from Australia wondering you could possibly help me.

Many years ago, in fact 1987 in San Francisco, I met two of your past colleagues who were on the USS Enterprise, Jerry Petro and his good mate Steve (possibly Sturgeon?). We lost touch some years after meeting and I would dearly love to get in touch with them again.

I noticed that Jerry has posted a story to your site and I tried his email address listed but it has bounced back so I assume that the email address is no longer active.

If you could forward to me any recent contact details for Jerry it would be appreciated. Alternatively, if you could send this email to him for his reply it would be great.

Thanking you in anticipation J


P.S. You have sent up an awesome site!


KP Note: Thank you Petrina. I know others that are also looking for Jerry. If someone out there has Jerry's latest email address please pass it to be and I will post it. Thanks.

Looking For Larry Roeckner

There's a guy named Larry Roeckner named in one of the email posts on your site. I'm looking for a high school buddy of mine by that name. From Pocatello, Idaho. Graduated in '79.

Do you know this guy? Or is he in your rosters?

Thanks a lot. Your site is really cool. I found Larry's name through a google search.

Cheers, Mark McCormick


KP Note: I did know Larry Roeckner but I do not know what happened to him. I know many of you served with him in RC Div and know more about him. 

Phil Foss Comes Aboard (Again)

The ports of call for the '78 cruise were Pearl Harbor, Subic Bay, Singapore, Hong Kong and Perth for the cruise list.

I'd like to apologize for ignoring my email for a couple of years, I have it reactivated and ready to receive.

My first TP&CC was on the Loss of Pumping Power logic S/D circuit....Putting the Master Test Switch in "A" was easy to start with but when the test moved on to the ""B" train guess what position the Master Test Switch was still in.... When those boost contacts slammed closed, my hand jumped off the test switch. A few seconds later the RCEO (me) is being called to EOS. Instead of a reprimand I'm congratulated for my quick response releasing the switch for the rods had only traveled 0.3" in the fast insertion (who remembers at what rod position did the main engine isolate and the name of the switch that set up the logic). Of course before the watch was over our RC div officer paid me a visit with fewer accolades.

Me and shipmate Dave Morgan are spending a Saturday with my uncle and his family in Salinas, CA and surrounding areas. We are in two cars sailors following civilians through some beautiful CA countryside when Dave decides to jump out pick a hand full of flowers and give them to my aunt in the other car. We pull up beside them at a stop sign and Dave pushes the flowers in her face with his big grin beaming. She screams like murder and pushes them away. He puts the flowers in the floor board and my aunt white as a sheet says "each flower is a $500 fine". No wonder she screamed. We carefully ditched the yellow beauties. By the way is there a statute of limitations on picking poppies?

RC-22 '78-'81 Phil Foss


Nuke Info  

R.W. "KP" T : Regarding:

How my navy nuclear power training enhanced my life and career:

I left active duty in Alameda, California (USS Enterprise) in May 1985, 23 years old and with six years of active duty in the nuclear propulsion program under my belt. The obvious choice would have been to enter a college engineering program, but I decided to enroll at Texas A&M University as a history major. I felt like my math and technical skills were very strong, but I needed to improve my reading, writing, and communication skills. I earned a BA from A&M in May 1989 and then decided to go into the library profession. I earned a Master of Library and Information Science from Louisiana State University, finishing in August 1992. Since September of 1992, I’ve worked full-time in research libraries at three institutions (Texas A&M, the National Library of Medicine, and Washington State University).

My engineering education and experience have helped me immeasurably in my career…I have worked in library automation since 1992 and now head the Systems unit at Washington State University’s library. Between my nuclear field training and being in the right place at the right time (becoming an automation librarian just prior to the WWW information explosion), I’ve had an interesting and rewarding career, and most of it is (hopefully) still ahead of me.

To this day, Naval Nuclear Power School and prototype training are the most challenging educational experiences that I’ve gone through. I attended Nuclear Power School in Orlando and prototype at the Idaho National Engineering Lab (S1W plant).

You can find my home page at Also, I’m on Twitter and Facebook.

Al Cornish



Hey KP, In response to the posting by PP on 8/15/09 about the RM known as “The Rock”. You wanted to know why these weird stories were always about RMs. It’s because an RT is always telling the story (first hand knowledge?) and he is too embarrassed to own up. Therefore, he changes the story and blames a poor innocent RM.

Roy T.

Erron Thiry Comes Aboard

I was in EE30 from 87 thru 90. 

Thanks Erron


KP Note: Another Load Toad I remember!

Hanuman Singh, Where Art Thou?

Hey, KP

When are you going to upload your next MHVS newsletter? 


KP Note: I have no idea. 

Green Jobs

Hello, I got out of the Navy in 2007 and now have a job in energy efficiency. I received tons of questions from the guys I served with on how to break into the "Green" sector. I am sure you and your readers would have some thoughts on that. My site ( ) is in development. I am interested in any ideas you have on how to help Navy Nukes get green jobs. 

Thank You, Steve


Match Books!

Cleaning house and came across some old memories. I think most are from the 84 cruise. Hawaii, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, Kenya, Perth Australia & some Bay Area. I collected the match books but was never a smoker. 

Dan Fisher


SRO Arrgh!

Can't believe it myself, but I am actually going to return to the land of operations and get an active Reactor Operator license! And my experience and background qualify me for an SRO position as well (some plants call it a control room supervisor, or unit supervisor). The RO license gets you the "At The Controls" job...

One consideration for this decision is, well, money, and lots of it. The other is because I'm really tired of dressing out in plastic PCs and carrying stuff around the plant, where it's really hot. The AC in the control room is looking so much better these days...

Anybody out there know someone that works at Nine Mile Point, I'd appreciate a little inside info... I applied for a position there.

Arrgh!!! returning to the controls??? If I can pass the tests...


KP Note: Good Luck, Arrgh! Remember nuetrons in = nuetrons out

Shawn Harwell Comes Aboard

Please add me to your site. You're doing a pretty cool thing. Keep it up.

Shawn Harwell, RM-11, 1998-2002



Hi KP,

I’m emailing you from my work site so the email address is not what you are used to from Dr G.

I have cruise books from the early 70s when I was on board and wanted to scan the reactor officers pictures and those of the Rx department that were in each book and send them to your site. I think many of the guys from that era would enjoy them. Is there any particular file type that is best for you to put on the site? What degree of clarity do you need – my scanner files can get really big by increasing the dpi on the software. Just let me know and I will send them along – I have some “on board” pictures of some old nukes that served with me that I could send as well.

I love the site and CritThink as well.



KP Note: Hey, DrG. The best format would be as a jpeg and not too big. If it is large I can always thumbnail the image (less than 1MB). 

Randal Rhea Comes Aboard

Randal Rhea, RC-11, 1992-1997,


David O'Donnell Changes email Address

Could you change my email info on your site?

David O'Donnell RC-23 1992-1998

Thank you


Mark Oliver Changes email Address

Hello Ram, I would would like to update my e-mail address for Mark Oliver from the early 80's to Also just for shits and grins what happened to the listing for early 80's dirtbag D G Davis? I know you had him listed but it disappeared. I guess if worse comes to worse I can get it from aargh but I was just curious. 

V/R Fish


KP Note: I recall nothing from the early 00s--just like the other decades. Arrgh must have his email so maybe he'll send it in.

Sorry About Delays ...

I got quite a few angry emails asking why nothing had been uploaded here in a month. All I can say is ... sorry. I get busy like all of you. Since we last spoke I have written TWO--not one, but Two books. You'll have to buy these (no free download as my book agent would object). If ever one of these gems gets published I'll let you know. Ahhh, to be rich and famous......



A Friendly Message from Ed

Cause Ram has to much class to say it: If you have a problem with the frequency that Ram updates this site, F__K OFF AND START YOUR OWN F__KING SITE! No one is paying him to maintain this site. He has created a great site and certainly does not need to adhere to anyone's schedule but his own as far as maintaining the site.

Thanks Ram, I needed that!


PS: I hope you post this, but don't think you will.


KP Note: Na, I'll go ahead and post (while omitting the three emails complaining that nothing was posted last week)

Thomas “TJ” O’Donnell Comes Aboard

Thomas “TJ” O’Donnell

RE04, RE03 & Aft group



KP Note: So YOU must have been the guy that f**cked everything up for poor Jerry Wheeler:)

A Message From Poor John

Hay thanks man for keeping this site going. Sorry for not sending in anything new for a while. As for you getting rich good luck, I am on my 6th million now. Damn it was hard but I had to give up on the first 5. 

Poor John



Just a correction for your 1970's decade listing.

My name is misspelled, is should be Ed Thoele, not Theole.

Also my email address is

The previous one still works but I do not check it as often.

The dates, plant, and rate are correct.

Thanks for the listing.

Ed Thoele


Tony Knoblock Comes Aboard

Knoblock, Tony

1995-1999. RC22 and RIMR.


A Humble Note From Your Editor

Again, sorry about delays .... I think I finally figured out why I put off adding stuff top this site in a timely manner. First of all I use Frontpage, which is very unstable with such a large site. is now huge. I often begin adding stuff and then my system freezes up. If your email comes in and you do not put your email address within the message (by that I mean I have to go back to my earthlink webpage, hit respond so that I can cut and paste your email address out of my browser, by the time I get back to Frontpage it is stuck and I wind up starring at a spinning hourglass. SO Please include your email address within the message. 

Also, not enough of you Easterners are sending me Yuengling Lager. That always helps motivate me. 

Last by not least I get all your email (even when Earthlink sends you that Spam filter mumbo jumbo).  I go through my spam filter everyday and search for "KP Site" in the subject line. If you send in an email and I don't post your story or address just be patient. I will. I often get many repeats because people think I didn't get the original. 

Rock on, my brethren!



Can You Help This Woman?

I met a sailor at bar. he say he on uss enterprise. he fixes nuclear machines and electronix. i think he is my baby's daddy. he won't return phone call or email. who do i talk to about getting his name?


KP Note: Do any of you out there fix nuclear machines and electronix? If so this woman may be looking for you. I withheld her email address for obvious reasons. 


I have an open position for a quality guy in Albany NY

Do you have anybody in you data base that might fit?


Andrew J Brod Comes Aboard

Andrew J Brod 

EM 23 1998-2002


Matt Heine Comes Aboard

I don't see many 'A' gangers on your roster. Originally assigned to Damage Control Dept./Habitability Div, which was then reabsorbed by Engineering Dept.. I was part of EA03 & EA09 Air Conditioning & Refrigeration shops from 1/84 - 7/87. Did 'The Ditch'. (Suez Canal). Stood watch in Central as Chief Aux Operator.

Matt Heine


KP Note: I bet I knew you.

A Birthday Wish


I am writing to ask if there might be someone who posts on your site who remembers an EM by the name of Gary Arne, who would have been on the Enterprise in the early-80's. I'm a friend of his, and I was wondering if anyone might have any stories about him; his 48th birthday is coming up and I thought it might make a good surprise.

BTW I am female and was a crypto ET in the 80's but didn't stay in long enough to do anything fun except spend a couple of months at Diego Garcia and was never on a ship. (Try not to make fun of me.)




KP Note: You heard it, folks ... good or bad:) 

Joe Hill Comes Aboard

Please add me to the list

93-97 RL DIV

Joe Hill


My Ship

KP, Just a quick note to thank you for this site. I found it by accident and then spent 4+ hrs reading it. I served on Big E in 70s. Not a nuke though. Some of the stories made me cry I laughed so hard. The Big E was truly the Carrier with Class. I will be sad like many of you when she is decommissioned in a few years. She will always be "my ship."

Jeff B. 3rd Div, 75 - 77


Mark May Comes Aboard

Thanks for doing this site. Mark Johnson just emailed me the link.

Kindly add me to the site.

Mark May RM4/RM div office 1974-1978

Keep up the great work 



Jim Carter Comes Aboard

Jim Carter, IC2, RO 3 plant, '66-'68.

Great work on the web site.



Josh McGrew Comes Aboard

I believe I submitted this once before but I did see me name on the list.

McGrew, Josh RE11, 1999 - 2003


KP Note: Sorry I missed ya, Josh.

Tony Bowlin Comes Aboard

I was RC14 from 2002-2006 my personal email is



Hi, I just noticed your Big E site and wanted to send along a correction. In your memorium section, you have my husband, John Zdankus, listed as leaving us in 1990 while putting himself through college. Actually, he died in 1994 in a work accident. He had finished college with his BS in Engineering from Santa Clara University, and was happily married (to me!) with 2 babies. We all still miss him terribly, but those two babies are now 16 and 17!

Thank you, it's great that you have a memorium and a connection for all to visit,

Janice Zdankus


Rant and Rave


Thanks for posting my rant. Just wanted to let you know that the U and C keys on your keyboard aren't working.

Stay cool, Ed


Schmidity Checks in


Have a new work email and I can always be reached at Feels good to be actually working again for the Navy though be it in Bahrain. Beats all other Haji Land locations. Still missing American Football though.

Previous post you had a link for an individual collecting names who plan to appear at the Enterprise Decom. Please send the link as I want to be there.

All be safe out there

Eric Schmidt RL 90-94

KP Note: Always good to hear from you, Eric. Football? If you are a Raider, Browns, Redskins, Chiefs or Rams fan then you're not missing anything.

Heath Stickney Updates his Email

KP, Still love the site. I would like to update my email:

Additionally, I would love to be a part of the decom ceremony. I do still know at least one person that I served with who is currently back on the Enterprise. I am hoping to make the next Tiger Cruise at the end of the next deployment. 

Take care, Heath Stickney


Mini Reunion

Mates, Well it took 21 years for this reunion which lasted a whopping 1 hour, but was worth it. My old steaming bud from 1MMR, Pat O'Neill (PP), was flying back to Oakland, CA and stopped for a couple of hours at Logan Airport in Boston. So, l hopped on a bus from Providence, RI and rode up to meet him. The New England Patriots were playing in Foxboro at 4pm, so riding the bus alleviated any undo stress from driving to and from Logan. We shot the sh*t briefly with no beers and celebrated the 35th anniversary of getting tattooed in Hong Kong. Though short and sweet, it was great to see my old pal. The only bad part was freezing my ass off waiting for the return bus! l'd like to wish all of you site members a happy and safe Thanksgiving, and that includes all of our troops, sailors and airmen. Take care all!

4MMR Willy


Cheating Scandal 


The link below is to an article posted today on (Norfolk paper). Don’t know how long the link will work. Quite a few on Ike and on the Truman were disciplined for cheating.

Joe B from Ike (1986-1990)


Remembering John Zdankus

Just read Janice Zdankus' post. I worked for Suds in the Rx Station Office during the '86-'87 yard period. He was without a doubt one of the absolutely coolest guys I met while on the Pig. I never saw the guy without a smile on his face. I think he was living in Sunnydale at the time and he would stop at a convenience store everyday during his commute and buy one of those packaged sandwiches to eat on the way, and that is the only bad thing I can say about the guy. I remember thinking that if all my LPO's were going to be as cool as Suds, the next 4 years would be a cakewalk. Needless to say, his signature was VERY prominent in the RADCON section of my RT and control point watch qual cards.

I was sad to see that he had passed. He was one of the most well-liked and well-respected men in Rx Dept. I'm sure he maintained those attributes in his post Navy life.



Bob Locke Comes Aboard

So many names and memories. Thanks for what you've got going here!

Please feel free to post my e-mail address.

Bob Locke

EE30 (mostly) from 11/89 - 01/96


KP Note: Load Toads always welcome!

Suspect Posting


I think its great that Big E nukes, and nukes in general for that matter can come here to post and reminisce (sic), But I take offense to one of the recent postings:


You wrote on the Big E site

Mark Kram Comes Aboard

"I was a Big E Nuke in EE-30 from Dec 2000 until April 2004. My name is Mark Mark. I went to 'A' school (Electrician) and Nuke School in Orlando. I went to Prototype in Windsor, Ct at the DOE S1C facility. My nephew Timothy Mark was also a Nuke ET in the late 90's until becoming a sub. supply officer. I did not re-enlist so I was an EM3. Thanks."

Problems with this post:

Last Nuke Power School Class in Orlando graduated in Dec 1998. Am I to believe it took you two years to get through prototype. Maybe you were ill. BOD on this one. Wait a tick, you never re-enlisted and it's a six year commit. Using the higher math, you came in ~April 1998. Eight weeks Boot Camp..lalala, Jun 1998 you get to Orlando, 14 or so weeks of EM "A" School, start power school September 1998; six months er Dude!!!! you were shit hot. You finished power school in three months!!!! WE ARE NOT WORTHY!

S1 Chernobyl was shut down permanently in March 1993. Its core was removed in 1995. It all becomes clear to me now. They sent you to an inactive site with a a shutdown reactor with no core no wonder it took you two years to get to the ship. Bet you were YODA of the CPAWs. Saving grace was you were card complete with the exception of operator quals so they simulated operation and beamed in the rest of the quals card. Then off to the Big E you went.

I'll check the Pork Chop Mags (Supply Corps stuff) to see if your nephew is in the current or previous years. Pretty amazing to have your nephew a nuke who is qual'd as an ET before you went to A or Power School. Ahhh, I see a LT Timothy John Mark listed in the Supply Corps Mag. So there is perhaps some truth to your post if this is your nephew.

KP you need to flush this one, hit the handle twice because that is a lotta bullshit. I'll send the air freshener

Eric Schmidt, LCDR, SC, USN(ret) RL 90-94


KP Note: Huh? I'm so confused. Not so much about this as everything else on life.


KP -

For those who attended Nuke School in Vallejo, I offer this stroll down memory lane, that is as long as we can still walk without a cane! I was there in class 7605.

I spent a couple of days in the Bay Area recently and visited the old Mare Island Naval Shipyard. There isn't much left of it. The Vallejo School District Administrative offices now occupy the old Base HQ Bldg.

The barracks have long since burned to the ground and not even foundations and footers remain. I took some pictures of the NPS Bldg. It is in a state of neglect and disrepair from years of un occupancy, A portion was used for local social services, but most of the interior was left untouched since the last class attended, other than the Vallejo vandals, of course.

Post as many of the attached as you want.

Jim Carrel


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Sorry, shipmates. I've been negligent. I didn't realize I was so dinq updating this site until I got an email from the Might Arrrgh! asking me:


so... have you given up updating the Big E Site? It's been what... a month and half this time? Hehehe... what's wrong... wifey take the computer away because you are masturbating too much again?

I have so many updates I do not even know where to begin. I will make a noble attempt to work backwards (if that makes any sense). Hopefully my system won't crash. 

Again, apologies to all of you who I neglected. I wish I could say I was busy but I really wasn't. I was just lazy.


Bob Moody Comes Aboard

Hey, this is cool!!!! Please add me to the list.

I was on from San Fran (Dec 88) to Newport News (Sept. 92).

Bob Moody - 4 Plant Reactor Operator (ET) email is

P.S. How can I find out how Pat Sherwin died?


Matt Morgan Comes Aboard

Hello all, Please add me to the list of former inmates on the Big-E. I was a LD from 1995-2001. I was in EE-04. Lot's of good times. Great job on the web-site. Once I am no longer able to be held accountable I will post some stories from my time on board.

my e-mail is

EMCS Matt Morgan


More Time on the Big E

I am listed under the 90’s for my tours aboard the Big Pig. Please update me to conclude my tour into the 2000’s. I was in M-div and QA from 2001-2006 and in QA from 2008-2009. I can’t wait to attend the decommissioning of the ship. Like Travis Young said, it is the people that made it great!


Richard Epperson


Ronnie Payne Comes Aboard

Please add my name to the list of shipmates serving on the Big E 1965-1969 A Division Ronnie Payne. My email address is



Christmas Greetings

First hello to some old friends since the last time I checked in. Kevin "kid rhino" Mclain, Mike "pee wee" Yonts, and Paul O'shaughnessy. Mikey it figures you would would remember the story grounding of the E in Alameda channel differently from others but then we always had to tie 50 lb weights to your feet to keep you from floating away, proven by the fact that you forgot you had already said hello on this site. Kevin, my memories of you will have to wait for other posts. Paul, I remember 4 things about you: 1)Look, there goes a flock of flying turtles! 2)Pull my finger! 3)The Battlestar Galactica, I hope you have a picture of her (for everyone else the battlestar was a mid 70's Mercury capri with a turboed 2.8L V-6 and Armor. 4)You were an absolutely wicked DM. Also hello to Jerry Anderson who graciously gave up his nickname to bear Clark whom we haven't seen yet. 

Regards to all and have merry Christmas, 



KP Note: sorry about the delay in posting this in time for Christmas:(

Added Info From Joe Vargas

Hey! This is Joe Vargas. I’m listed in the 1990-1999 section of the roster. I noticed that my info is incomplete compared to others and I have an email update. Here it is:

Joe Vargas RE11 1995 – 1999


More Proof of False Claims

I agree with what Eric Schmidt was saying about this guy claiming to be a Big E Nuke. The Radcon guys I worked with at EB KSO(New York Prototype) took the Windsor site back to "green field" in the late '90's, early 2000's. The CT prototype was not an option for my Power School class(9307). The only explanation is that this guy had a break in service or the Enterprise was not his first sea command, but stating that he didn't re-enlist kind of ruins that argument. Nukes are some of the most cynical and skeptical people in the world. You should know better than to try to pull one over on a site dedicated and populated by ex-Nukes! 


Heath Stickney


New email address for Jim Sutton

Hey Ram please change my email address-


Hope all is well on your end. Do not get to check in as often as I would like, but I do check in

Thanks Jim


Jeffrey Duplessis Comes Aboard

I wish to be added on the CVN 65 Reactor Department listing. My name is Jeffrey Duplessis and I served on CVN 65 from 1981 to 1984 in RC22 as ET2. My e-mail is

Thanks, Jeff


A Tale

I just read a couple of tales involving Capt. T.J. Dull (p. 37 or 38) and it caused a recollection:

We were freshly out of the yards after the refueling overhaul ('95) and I was standing Load Dispatcher with LCDR Craig Faller (he was a station officer) as EOOW. Capt. Dull comes in the port side, takes one look at me, and starts giving me a ration for absolutely no reason.

I was the bull nuke on the ship at the time, having flown to the P.I. mid-deployment in November of '89, and I wasn't really in the mood.

I turned to Mr. Faller (absolutely the BEST officer I ever served with in my 12 years - he's a RADM at present), and told him that I was properly relieved by the R.O. and was signing out of the logs. Faller's face went blank for a split second, then he asked me why I thought that was acceptable. I told him that since the R.O. knew my job so much better than I did that maybe he'd like to sit there for a while and I'd take a break.

Capt. Dull cracked up laughing. The color returned to Faller's face.

Dull left a few minutes later and Faller said "You can't talk to him like that!", to which I replied "Technically, sir, I was talking to you and not the R.O."



Another Tale

This story isn't quite as funny as the title would imply, but the ending is.

Toward the end of the early 90's refueling overhaul a couple of guys in EE30 came across a recipe for producing napalm in your bathtub. As they were inquisitive types, and were rooming together during the overhaul, they decided to give it a shot. They cooked up a nice batch and it apparently worked as-advertised.

The story got out among some of the non-nuke guys in E-Div. One of those guys overheard Waydick talking in a very negative fashion about EMCS Reid Benedict (my spine shivers as I type that name...) and contemplating whether or not to blow him up. The "informer" (I wish I could remember his name, but I can still see his face) reported Waydick and the Newport News PD bomb squad got involved.

I don't know how the two guys involved avoided jail time, to be honest, but they did.

Needless to say, the ELO (whose name also escapes me, but he was a BIG dude who had played football at Annapolis) was NOT happy. Benedict was given a week off free of charge and our entire division got to stand at attention and get read the riot act for about an hour. I still remember the ELO getting right in my face and asking me if I wanted a piece of him.

Lewandowski ("Sweet Lew"), the roommate, wound up getting off pretty light. He kept his NEC and I think got a week's restriction since he had only "helped" with manufacturing the substance in question.

Waydick got his NEC pulled and was reduced in rank from E-5 to E-4. After much careful consideration, not only did he stay aboard the Big E but he was transferred to the most logical department for a man of his inclinations:


Navy logic at it's finest!



Mark Mark


I can't vouch for the rest of his posting because I haven't found and reviewed it, but there was an EM3 Mark Mark (and yes, he took a daily beating over that name) in EE30, just not from 2000-04. More like late 1993-97 time frame, give or take a bit. I'm pretty sure he was in one of the last few classes to go through S1C.

Bob Locke


KP Note: Bob, I'm sorry for the delay in posting your stories. 

Submarine Life

Hi KP,

First let me tell you what a great site you have here. I found your site through a link someone posted on Facebook. I’ve been reading the posts on your site for the past month, except for a week or two where I had to get back to work or I had the day off for the holidays. Sadly, I am caught up now and will probably have to do real work again.

After reading all of the posts, I feel like I have known most of you as though we served together. I was never on the Big E, but I was an electrician on the Sturgeon (SSN 637) from 89 to 93. It’s good to see that all of the sea stories I heard while in NPS about the PI are all true. I wanted to go to the west coast, but I didn’t want to go to Idaho and that probably sealed my fate for the east coast. I ended up at D1G while my roommates, who all wanted surface, went to S3G. My wish list order was a sub out of Pearl, San Diego, and then Charleston, SC. I ended up going to Charleston.

Cool thing about being on a sub was that I got to go to Navy dive school. It was an awesome 6-week break from the boat in Panama City, plus another monthly stipend. I didn’t have to do much diving, because the divers on the tender usually did all of the diving-related work on the boat, which was ok with me because you couldn’t’ see anything in the water in port anyway. The divers on the boat were the safety swimmers, so going in/out of port, I got to stand topside in my shorts/t-shirt and pretend like I was a life guard. During man overboard drills, I would get to stand around in my shorts/t-shirt and pretend like I was going to get in the water and rescue someone.

Life on a sub is like living in a small town. Everyone knows everyone else, nuke and non-nuke, so there is no anonymity. There is also no place to hide or escape to. Things are less formal regarding the military side of it. I never worried about getting on/off the boat because of what I was wearing or what my hair looked like. Not only do you have nuke quals, but you also have to qualify subs. No mail at sea, unless you count family-grams, which were only a sentence or two every month or so. We did most of our ops up north, so the ports I went to were Scotland, England, and France. I did get to make a few stops in Puerto Rico, Ft Lauderdale, and Port Canaveral (remember driving from Orlando to Cocoa Beach and stopping by Port Canaveral to see if there was a sub to tour?). I was never away from home for more than four months. Hot-racking sucks! Almost all nubs have to do a 3-month tour on the mess decks. I made second class before I got to the boat, so I think that is how I avoided that nightmare. I did have to work in Deck Div for a while, so I chipped paint for a while. In order to make the boat more quiet, we often secured showers so we wouldn’t have to run the evaporator, and then we would turn the fans on low. Lethal combination. The ERUL and AEA were often sent forward to control to help plot contacts when we were on station, so at least I was able to see the some of the more interesting stuff that we were doing. Subs are not made to be on the surface, so long surface transits could be horrible.

Not sure how it is for surface EMs, but on the boat, we were responsible for just about everything electric like toasters, deep fat fryer, the washer/dryer, and all of the light bulbs. Nothing like being awakened to change a light bulb in the chief’s quarters.

So what’s better? Surface or subs? It sounds like surface, but there is just something about being on a sub.

This is getting long, so I’ll try to send a sea story later. Time to get back to work.

Scott Bohnert


KP Note: Thank you very much for your letter, Scott. It was fun to read about subs. Most of us thought we were headed to a sub and the Big E took us instead. Part of me still wishes I did a tour on a boat.

Mike Hughes Comes Aboard

Greetings and Salutations to His Royal Majesty, King Paul the first.

Hi KP,

I did my first tour of sea duty on the Big E from March 1972 to September 1974. Please list my email address in the “Semi-Psychedelic” 1970s pages:

Hughes, Mike | RM04, 1972 – 1974 |

Thanks for your hard work,



Check Out P-Mooj at PF Chang's RR Marathon

Say what? You think life isn't what it used to be? Cheer up, Bros! The P-Mooj has released their first live recording in almost 2 years!

I must say our sound has really morphed into something smoother and edgier. Our new drummer Robert Whaley has really changed the mind melt machine. I actually sing in key now and Richard Chavez is using a Les Paul. I'd pay to hear us now (but you won't have to... the downloads are free.)


Sub Service

I agree with Scott Bohnert’s comment. I came from Ike. Surface life was probably much easier, and that’s why I chose it. I wouldn’t mind hearing from a cruiser nuke. Are any of those around? My dad retired from the Navy. He was in VRC-40 in Norfolk back in the early 70s and later in HSL-30 and 32 in the late 70s. Just before he retired we went on a dependents’ cruise on the Briscoe, a Spruance class destroyer. I thought that was pretty cool. I didn’t get to tour the engine spaces, but those ships had gas turbines with variable pitch props. They were quite maneuverable. I think life on one of those probably wasn’t too bad if you could get by without too much sea-sickness. The bad side of being on a carrier just had to do with the high quantity of people. I think we had over 200 guys just in Rx berthing. Sometimes I found ways to get away from everybody for a while, and the ship was big enough that you could do that. Anyway, the point is I don’t have a problem admitting that sub service is more elite.

Joe B from Ike


Sub Story

Hi KP,

In Sep of 92, we had just left Holy Loch Scotland after a brief stop on our way North. We were submerged and cruising through the Irish Sea when we snagged a fishing net. Those poor guys on that trawler must of thought they were going to die. We were pulling their boat backwards and they were taking on a lot of water. It was the middle of the night when they woke me because I was one of the safety swimmers on board. Apparently, they were worried that we had sunk the trawler and that there might be people in the water, so the safety swimmers were supposed to stand by to get in the water and save these people.

Fortunately, we stopped and surfaced before the trawler sunk, and a nearby fishing boat was able to render assistance to the trawler. However, their fishing net had some steel cables around it. Guess where that steel cable ended up. Yes, it wrapped around the screw so that we lost propulsion. But never fear, we had the secondary propulsion motor, an over-sized trolling motor. Now we cruise back to Holy Loch on the SPM at high-speed, something like 3 kts. The SPM is not designed to run for long periods of time, so every now and then we have to stop so it does not overheat. Holy Loch sends out a big tug to meet up with us the next day. We have to send people topside to tie up to the tug, and every time there are people topside, we have to send up a safety swimmer. Everyone else is tied to the boat with safety harnesses so they don’t get washed away except for the safety swimmer. Fortunately, it was one of the calmer days in the Irish Sea and I didn’t get washed away.

We get back to Holy Loch the next day. The Navy flies divers over from Charleston. The cable that was wrapped around the screw actually welded itself on the shaft, and it takes the divers a couple of days to get the cable off with a cutting torch. The boat is not quiet anymore, so we have to go back to Charleston to make repairs. Our 3-month trip is over after a few weeks.

Scott B.



KP Note: Scott, I'm fascinated by this. Can you tell us more about the SPM? Was it electric or diesel. We didn't have one of those at MARF:)


When I went to S8G they had an Emergency Propulsion Motor (EPM) which was Electric and a blast to operate for a Surface EM. Any chance I got I ran it. Not the same as at sea I'm sure but fun none the less!!!!

Gary Finke EE-30 and A & O '86 -'89



I was reminded that we pulled in/out of Faslane Scotland during our fishing net incident. I guess I'm getting old. In Faslane, you could tie up next to the pier, but in Holy Loch, you tied up next to the tender. The tender was moored in the middle of the channel, so you had to cross the tender and use the shuttles to get to the pier.

The SPM was located in AMR2LL. It was an electric motor that was either on or off, no speed control. I don’t remember if it could be extended/retracted from AMR2LL or from control. It was supposed to be used like side thrusters to help maneuver in port. I don’t think we ever used the SPM other than this one occasion, but I’m pretty sure there was always an SPM watch stationed during the maneuvering watch (going in/out of port). We probably never used it because we used tugs when we pulled into port and it was pretty shallow next to the pier so the SPM might hit the bottom.

The SPM is not to be confused with the EPM (emergency propulsion motor), a large DC motor used to turn the shaft during loss of propulsion drills. You could do a 1/3 bell on the EPM.

Scott B


KP Note: I remember one of my favorite things at MARF was the SSMG (which, of course a surface EM would never see). As I recall almost 80% of an EO's final board and final exam was the SSMG and battery. A lot of good all that info did me on the Big E. Maybe that's why it took me so long to qualify:) 

George Bagwell Gets new Email Address

Ram, Please change my e-mail to: 

Saw that Mel D. Has signed up. I haven't visited for a while so I'm trying to catch up. Still love the site.

George Bagwell RC23/30 86-90


KP Note: Always great to hear from you, George. I doubt I'd get anyone to disagree with me if I said you were one of the nicest and hardest working guys in RX Dept in my era. How about some sea stories!!!

Attention on Deck! Admiral Harvey Arriving!!!!!

ADM J. C. Harvey, Jr USN


REACTOR DEPT 1974-1976


This is a great site - thanks for keeping it going. All the best, JCHjr


KP Note: Sir, It is an honor to have you aboard!

Hans Oldewage Comes Aboard

Hans Oldewage, 

RL Div, 1981 - 1984


Kitty Hawk Sailor Stops By

KP, Love this site! I served aboard USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63) as part of CVW-11 in 70s. There is so much I forgot until I read through your website. I wish my old department had a way like this to connect with old shipmates. As much as I'd hate to admit it now those were some great guys and times. I wouldn't have traded those years for anything. 

BTW, love your band! I downloaded your PF Chang's race tracks and thought they totally rocked. I love the song God's Greatest Gift. A true classic! Best of luck, KP. I wish you success!

George Clarke


David Fisher gets New Email Address

Good morning KP,

Looking over the website bringing back memories that at one time thought of as a nightmare. The almost 4 years on the PIG are now good memories that I can pass on to my family or just other friends. You have done a wonderful job here and one day hope I can join a reunion or decommissioning.

Just wanted to update my email:

David Fisher RE-02 87-91


KP Note: Hey, David--always good to hear from you!

Jerry Petro Checks Back in

Thanks KP for managing this site. I don't get here often enough but would like to thank you for all you've done and all the time you have invested, for us. I understand there are a few people looking for me and wanted to forward two email addresses for you to post, when you get a chance. They are and . The latest search for me was 8/21/09 and Petrina was looking for an address (page 58).

Thanks for your help reuniting old friends and making us all laugh along the way. I love the stories and the reminders of other ones. The Mooj never gets old!

One last thing: Lt. Krause did puke during my shit gag. I asked him to sign my terminal leave request 20 minutes after that watch. He was still wearing a soiled shirt. He personally walked my request thru the chain of command so I could get out early! It saved 30 days of my life!!! Do you think he saved the shirt? (Lt. Lewinsky?)

Jerry Petro


KP Note: Jerry, one of these days you need to come see the P-Mooj perform. My shows are geared toward some of the shows we saw together in SF in the good old days.

Mr. Harvey

I remember Mr. Harvey from my time spent aboard the USS Bainbridge CGN-25. He was the supply officer during our 9 month WestPac cruise in '78. He also served as the MC for the beauty contest when we crossed the equator. In the photoscan (from our cruisebook) he is posing with the winner and her little dog. A great guy as I recall. Good to see he's made a fine career for himself.

Tom Lindmark RE Div. Nov 79 - Nov 81


Randy Zerance Checks Back...

Hey Ram: Hadn't looked at the site for a couple years and noticed my email was out of date. The new one is .

I was sad to see that story about Capt. Carroll. He was my DO for a couple years when he was an ENS/LTjg. Cluney, Odie, and I always called him Joe Berry Carroll (Amongst ourselves of course). We used to tease him about his planning on being a lifer. He was always pretty good to me. Does anyone know what became of him after that?

There was someone looking for Larry Roeckner a while back. He was in RC-14 in the mid 80s with me. I remember he got discharged when they tested everyone for HIV. I never heard any more about him.

Randy Zerance RC-14 '85-'89


Dennis Murray Comes Aboard

I was stationed on Big E from May 1984 until July 1988

Stationed in 3 MMR, qualified CMO, all that jazz.

A long time ago it seems.

Dennis Murray



I too remember the SSMG at MARF although the memory is fading after all these years. I agree with you, KP, that it was the coolest. That’s a fascinating piece of machinery that can instantly go from being an AC generator/DC motor to a DC motor/AC generator. Even though we didn’t have those on the carrier it was nonetheless a great learning opportunity to be exposed to the theory. I work with degreed EE’s (though I still don’t have a degree myself), and they typically don’t have nearly the understanding of electrical machinery that I do. Because of the Navy I know the difference between an AC induction motor or synchronous motor or reluctance motor (rod drive mechanism). I also can speak of the advantages to using a DC motor whether it be shunt field, series field or compound. The typical EE cannot do that.

Joe B from Ike


Distinguished Visitors

The KP Household was blessed with a rare appearance by Rick Newman and Tom Wotherspoon this month. We talked about old times as you can imagine (in the presence of Mrs. KP---who had to say, "Don't worry---I've heard it all before---over and over again).

Hope to see you guys again soon!



Railroad Tracks

Speaking of Rick Newman, we didn't just talk about 'naughty' things that night. Rick and I both came upon a common fatherhood experience. We both were recently teaching our sons unit conversions. A few weeks prior my youngest was having a hard time figuring out how to convert things from one unit to another so I told my boy I had a super secret methodology that I learned in naval nuclear power school. I showed him how I was taught to do this using a method called Railroad Tracks. (You drew a grid and dived up into the top and multiplied across). When Rick said the same thing I started laughing. It's funny how we were taught to do complex things with simple methods and now some of us teach our kids using the same method.

Who here remembers using Railroad Tracks?


Mmm Mmm Mm, King Paul Rx Site--Page 59, Go here.

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