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Post Info TOPIC: Memories of Bootcamp


Third Class

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RE: Memories of Bootcamp


I just noticed this thread and it immediatley brought back lots of memories. Too many to mention here. However, it was a move I made at boot camp that actually sent me to Midway.

When I enlisted in the Navy I did it for the same reason that Gary did, to avoid going to Vietnam. My recruiter had guaranteed me a school if I enlisted. It was Hospital Corpman school.

I found out after I arrived at Great Lakes that most of the Corpmen were being sent to Marine boot camp and then to Vietnam as corpmen for the Marines. What a shyster that recruiter was.

Anyway I opted out of corpman school to the disblief of the counselor or whatever you want to call him. When I got my orders, they were to Midway Island. I asked my CC about Midway and he said there was nothing there but Gooney Birds.

That kind of put me down in the dumps but it was better than getting shot at in Nam. It all turned out very well though as Midway was very good duty especially at Crash and Fire.

I am very glad for my Midway experience but have often wondered where I would be had I went on to Corpman school. Maybe I would be a pharmacist or x-ray tech or something else in the medical field.

Then again, I would never have seen Midway and I also could be dead.

I did in the end see Vietnam although from the deck of the USS Galveston.

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Here are a few pictures with me in them from The Anchor.


Standing in line for a haircut.


Getting a haircut.


Standing in line for inoculations (flexing my muscle) :)


Issuing uniforms.


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Gary Randall
OMD/GSE Midway Island
1977 - 1979
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Gary Randall
OMD/GSE Midway Island
1977 - 1979
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From The Anchor, 1976.



-- Edited by Midway Sailor at 22:07, 2008-09-08

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Gary Randall
OMD/GSE Midway Island
1977 - 1979
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Second Class

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Howard wrote:

Great pictures Gary E.

Howard  cry




One of these days I will take the time to do a really proper copy of the images in the book.  These were just quick-and-dirty using my camera hand-held with a florescent light lighting it from the side.  Someday I will use a tripod and proper lighting.

Gary



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Chief

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Great pictures Gary E.

I dreaded the rifle range I was just awful at that. Filipinos were better than me at shooting. I'd be real skinny if I had to hunt for supper!!

In the Overhead shot most everything in that Grinder picture is gone. The Palm trees along the channel are still there. Most all the buildings are all gone as far as you can see. You can see the USS Recruit in the upper left all those old wood barracks are gone. The wood bridge is gone replaced by a 1 year old concrete bridge before NTC closed. The old smoker ring is gone too.

Howard  cry

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Howard Gillins [AKA] Howdude,Midway 70-71 ABH-2 Fire Dept,Group Member since 2001.Retired since 2002.


Second Class

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From 'The Anchor' - 1970

File3.JPG


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Second Class

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From 'The Anchor' - 1970

File4.jpg
File4.JPG
File4.jpg

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Second Class

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Don't know about that ... but they did have a breakout while I was on Nimitz (early in bootcamp) and they isolated the complete barracks for a time. //d:)

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D. A. "Dusty" Durst
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Chief

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  You know, I wonder if they didn't temporarily move the NTC out of San Diego up to Alamada or TI because of a breakout of meningitis because I think you have to vacate where the breakout is to let the virus settle down. I think the Air Force or maybe it was the Army that had the problem at the same time in the bay area and they had to do the same thing.

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Perry Smithberg 
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Midway detachment 1963-64


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Perry ... I spent some time in the bay area (66-68 & 73-74) but never got wind of an NTC at TI or Alameda ... as far as I knew at the time it was San Diego, Orlando and G'Lakes ... of course, you could always revert back to "what the hell do you know anyways? LOL" ... later //d:)coolshades

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D. A. "Dusty" Durst
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Chief

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Perry,
They [USN] had a lot of Schools at TI but do not recall any Boot Training there. Wayne spent several months in SF maybe he will pick up on this??
My Dad & Father in Law both passed through Farragut. Not sure what Navy history could be discovered there but I thought I heard about POW's stowed there once.

Howard  weirdface

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Howard Gillins [AKA] Howdude,Midway 70-71 ABH-2 Fire Dept,Group Member since 2001.Retired since 2002.


Boot

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The only thing I remember ever being in Alameda was an NAS.  I know women used to go to boot camp in Bainbridge, MD until Orlando opened up in 1970.

Yeah, pretty stupid to close down Orlando and San Diego in favor of Great Lakes.  Makes no sense.  Makes about as much sense as where they sent my brother to boot camp.  Kid lived in Orlando, but they sent him to Great Lakes... February or March. Poor kid.  We lived in Cleveland when I enlisted... at least I got to go someplace warm!

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Lori Carroll
NAF Midway Supply Dept. 1978-79

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Chief

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Am I dreaming when I think that during the Vietnam war they had a NTC at Alameda or somewhere else at San Francisco? I had a old WW2 Navy vet friend that used to talk about going to boot camp at Farragut Idaho.

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Perry Smithberg 
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Midway detachment 1963-64


Chief

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Sounds like a similar story here too. Rich got richer & the City Bafoons gave it away.

Did your area find it strange how the decision was made to close the 2 Boot Camps closest to water & Regular Navy assets & great weather most of the year & to move it to a land lock area where we have to transport folks coast to coast & bad weather 6 months out of the year?? They move one training aide from here to Chicago after it had a new building built for it. It was about the most stupid decision ever made in the name of BRAC.

How twocents

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Howard Gillins [AKA] Howdude,Midway 70-71 ABH-2 Fire Dept,Group Member since 2001.Retired since 2002.


Boot

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Funny thing is, the thing that did in the USS Bluejacket (version of the USS Recruit) was water!  Seriously.  It got inside over the years, rotted stuff out and completely destroyed the electrical system.

Baldwin Park (the community that now occupies the area the base formerly stood on) is serious nose-bleed territory.  You can't touch the price of a home in that development.  Sen. Mel Martinez has a home in there.  There's a upscale Publix, a tea room, spas, salons, a chocolatier, restaurants, an antique shop, very high-end men's hair cutteries (not to be confused with a barber shop, you understand) and the nicest looking Subway I've ever seen anywhere.

The city of Orlando sold the land to the developer for a song, and the common Joe that lives in this area can hardly afford to step in and breathe the rarified air.

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Lori Carroll
NAF Midway Supply Dept. 1978-79

My future's so bright, I've gotta wear shades!!


Chief

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Lori & All,

The west end of NTC SD is all house's, Condo's & Navy housing. It runs from Rosecrans street to the channel off Harbor Dr seporating the Old RTC from NTC. These homes & condo's sold for a large amount. Part of the deal was to build some Navy housing too. The only thing left that is Navy is the Dispensory which was built in like 94. The New chapel is a convention center for hire. The USS Recruit is surrounded by 2 hotels & a Strip mall. The Navy had to do a ton of work before it was given to the city. They had to paint every building that was being torn down. They had to remove asbestos pipes & put in new pipes that were never used. They tore down the huge NTC galley & several classroom building that were near new. It was a shame to see how poorly the place was rundown prior to the redevelopement. It looks nice now but the taxpayers got a screwin.
Howard twocents

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Howard Gillins [AKA] Howdude,Midway 70-71 ABH-2 Fire Dept,Group Member since 2001.Retired since 2002.


Boot

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If you never knew where RTC/NTC Orlando was, you'd never be able to find it now.  All the aforementioned specialty shops, restaurants and upscale community with houses and condos.  The parade ground where they used to hold recruit graduations is now "Bluejacket Park".  There used to be a really beautiful chapel on the RTC side... gone.  Last time I was down that way (about a year and half to two years ago) there were only two or three buildings that remained from the old days that were taken over by other agencies.  One was a high-rise barracks that wasn't finished when they ordered the shutdown for the base.  Because of the contract, it was required to be finished.  It was NEVER opened or lived in.  Crying shame... they could have done so much with it.  What a waste of money.  The golf course is long gone, the nice little piece of "beach" on Lake Baldwin (Ropeyarn Beach)... nothing.

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Lori Carroll
NAF Midway Supply Dept. 1978-79

My future's so bright, I've gotta wear shades!!


Chief

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The same thing happened to Naval Air Station Glenview.  Now called ''The Glen"  A couple years ago we were in that area looking for NAS Glenview, and could not find it.  We stopped a lady and asked where it was, and she said ''why your on it''??  She said go back a block or two and turn right and there will be hangar one.  What a surprise.  Gone was the runway that could accomidate the largest aircraft, gone we all the bldgs except hangar one and the chapel that was moved to a corner and was a meeting hall.  Hangar one was changed except for the front and the tower in the center of the hangar.  In its place was a Von Mour, and other shops.  The street a block or so longer was lined with specilaty shops and condos.  Most bases that I have been on that were closed a lot of the bldgs are retained for factorys and so on , but not NAS Glenview. You would never know you were there except for the front of hangar one, thats on the National Register. 

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Chief

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Gary & All,
 Well the Old NTC now Liberty Station has changed a lot under redevelopement. I think you can go to www.libertystation.com to see what they have done & are doing.The aerial view of the graduation that whole grinder area is gone & being developed. The Salute Battery Guns are all that is left. The area to the top has remained as what they refer to as the historical core. Several building to the right & left have been torn down & rebuilt. The upper left area is a huge Vons store & a Trader Joe's.
We came from LA in a Greyhound Bus at night in the rain. This arrival picture was staged possibly!! The yelling was non stop too.

Howard  twocents

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Howard Gillins [AKA] Howdude,Midway 70-71 ABH-2 Fire Dept,Group Member since 2001.Retired since 2002.


Second Class

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From 'The Anchor' - 1970

T03958A.JPG

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Second Class

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From 'The Anchor' - 1970

T03955A.JPG

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Chief

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Perry & All,
Same for us in 1968 big old concrete tables liquid Wisk & that little 6" brush for everything. Rinse & tye those cloths stops. Man what a pain. Busy work. I'm sure everyone had to get new T-Shirts after graduation. Mine had necks size to fit Shamu!!

Howard  omg.gif

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Howard Gillins [AKA] Howdude,Midway 70-71 ABH-2 Fire Dept,Group Member since 2001.Retired since 2002.


Chief

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allezw wrote:

Laundry PO!

We had a bucket, a small box of Tide, and a scrub brush when we lined up at the concrete wash tables. When finished, we tied each item onto the clothes line right nexct ot someone else's inthe company. Our clothes were always damp.

Not that we were better or tougher for having to perform these inane tasks, It is that only later did someone, somwhere convinced someone somewhere else that it was unnescessary nonsense.

The new Camp Nimitz had indoor washrooms with washing machines in late summer '54. 



  I was on Camp Nimitz in the spring of 61, if they had indoor washrooms we couldn't use them, we had to use the cement wash racks outside, hang the cloths with stops with the fly of the pants facing the Marine Corp boot camp to the east.



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Perry Smithberg 
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Midway detachment 1963-64


Third Class

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Laundry PO!

We had a bucket, a small box of Tide, and a scrub brush when we lined up at the concrete wash tables. When finished, we tied each item onto the clothes line right nexct ot someone else's inthe company. Our clothes were always damp.

Not that we were better or tougher for having to perform these inane tasks, It is that only later did someone, somwhere convinced someone somewhere else that it was unnescessary nonsense.

The new Camp Nimitz had indoor washrooms with washing machines in late summer '54. 

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Wayne L. White


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Two days after Christmas 1979 coming from warm Miami, Florida to Great Lakes in the dead of winter ...... {{{Brrrrrrrrrrrrrr}}} ..... Arrived around 2200 hrs. By the time we got the "Last Chance Speech" and contributed things not allowed to the brown box going around we were then taken' to our barracks. We were the first group and it was now 2400 hrs by the time we were able to hit the sack. About 0200 hrs later that morning another group came pouring in and that completed all of us in that barracks. At 0500 hrs the company comander's trash can alarm was going off and the fun began.

One of the rules while waiting in line for chow was if you were caught talking you had to go back to the end of the line in your company and walk backwards as the line moved. That also means you have less time to eat before it is time to fall back in formation outside.

One of my duties later on in boot camp was being the Asst. Laundry Petty
Officer as shown in this picture.

coolshades



-- Edited by "Midway 84" at 15:54, 2008-08-28

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Chief

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  Actually, the guy from Texas wasn't caught smoking so much, he just didn't leave his cigarettes in his locker when he went to class or whatever and the CC while observing the ranks while standing in formation at various places would catch him, in fact one or two days the CC made him carry his scrub bucket everywhere we went so if he found any cigarettes on him he could make him smoke under it whereever he caught him and it reminded him when we left the barracks to put them away.

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Perry Smithberg 
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Midway detachment 1963-64


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I had shoe trees I brought from home in my low cuts. They were handy, since I could barely reach the top of the lockers where we were required to store them. I only had to push down on the toes to find the two pairs rather than pulling down every pair to find the ones that belonged to me. Sometimes the compartment cleaners liked to mix up the shoes so that you had to check every locker for yours. Those show trees were a big help then.

One thing that really bothered me for the entire length of Boot Camp, was the '03 that we had to tie to our rack, and carry everywhere. I field stripped it one evening and was appalled out how dirty it was. My company commander came unglued that I was doing that. He threatened me with all kinds of problems if couldn't get it back together, and working. No big deal. Since that back-fired on him, he decided that I should demonstrate the Hundred Count Manual for everyone outside of the barracks. A couple of times.

The absolute recklessness of the cigarette smokers, needing that puff regardless of the penalties, convinced me forever that I did not want anything to do with smoking. When the company was waiting to enter the classroom, some of the guys would dive into the center of the formation to get a couple of drags. One guy they caught smoking in one of the closets. He ducked out of the formation, into the closet and missed the class so he could smoke. Of course they caught him. He had to stand in front of the class with as many cigarettes as he could cram into his mouth and smoke them, simultaneously, while the rest of the class followed the instruction. Then he was cadging the notes from everyone that night.

I swear that sometimes it was almost as if there was a fire in some of those companies, there was so much cigarette smoke rising from the convocation.

Wayne 56-57

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Wayne L. White


Chief

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allezw wrote:

As Geno said, buckets were scarce. One bucket per bunk for us, and you had better start right after evening chow or you wouldn't finish in time. You had to turn to for compartment cleaning and try to do the homework for the next day's classes. There were lots of guys still washing clothes in the dark and trying to find a place to hang them to dry.
---------------------------------------------------------------------
   When I went in in 1961 every man had his own bucket, we each needed one, if we smoked in the wrong place or wrong time we had to lite up 2-3 cigarette's at the same time and smoke them all with the bucket upside down over our head, I remember we had a guy from Texas that smoked under the bucket at least once a week.
    I remember one particular night about 01 or 0200 they held a bunk inspection on us, they started with the RCPO's bunk and then down, I lucked out, I was always suspicious of everything and trusted no one and I always had my socks in my shoes and for some reason I shoved them as far down into the toes as far as I could as I held my shoes out, I was ether the second or third bunk in line, the inspector pointed his flashlight into my shoes and went on, he caught quite a few guys with socks in shoes and made them stuff them in their mouth and shortly after me he started looking way into the toes because they started shoving them way in like I had, he didn't look carefully at mine because early on I wouldn't have known what he was up to.



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Perry Smithberg 
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Midway detachment 1963-64


Chief

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gedstrom wrote:

One thing that amazed me at the time, and still does to this day, is the number of people that just couldn't handle Navy bootcamp and were discharged as unfit.  I figured that if I could handle it, then ANYBODY should be able to handle it.  I had grown up in a fairly protected environment up until that time, and bootcamp was quite a culture shock to me.  Still, I didn't have any problems, even though I had a case of Pneumonia for most of my 10 weeks there, and didn't fully recover my voice for about 3 months afterwards.

Gary



  I just happen to think, the first day I seem to remember one guy that was released, declared unfit, but they told us that if any of the rest of us had ideas, that was okay but, if they let us go we'd be automatically declared 1A for the draft and put at the front of the line on our home county draft and we'd have to go through it all over again in the Army almost immediately.



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Perry Smithberg 
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Midway detachment 1963-64
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