Left the Rowan as BM2 in 73, headed for Iwakuni @ dive school in PI, some of the best times I ever had, what I can
remember...... I was in mount 51 on that high speed run on Haiphong, projectile man, Paul Weaver was the mount capt., got hot in there! Saw Leroy some years ago while traveling cross country, we hooked
up with another deck ape, Mike Seely, went on a train wreck in and around Omaha. Seely got busted by his old lady that night hanging on some talent in a local saloon....guess you can take the man out of
the Honcho......... I trying to get word to Mike Carter about Mouse, I believe he was hit and killed by a car while crossing a street in Imperial Beach, Ca. some time ago (Deputy Sheriff cruiser was the
story). I live there so got the word from some friends. Still see Lyle Hipner (Rowan BM1 in 71 with BM1 Newbold & BMC Mull) once in awhile, went deer hunting with him in Michigan a few years ago.
Mike Carter would remember him. He's doing ok, lost his wife a few years ago, and lost his youngest son some years prior to that - but he's still the old tough dude he always was, squared away. I
retired from the Navy in 91, BMC(DV) - went to work here at the Port of San Diego the same month, Marine Operations, can't bitch. Been married since 78, got two grandkids now, going to be 9 this
month [May 2003]. What a long strange trip it is.
I got bent on a hard hat dive off the USS Florikan (ASR 9) in the mid
80's, paralyzed. Was in a wheel chair for awhile, went from Balboa to Long Beach to Bethesda Naval Medical Research Institute, lot of hyperbarics and therapy, all that designer test stuff. We were on
a stage, brought us up too fast. I got some back, still got a heavy limp and a bit of a list, but I get around ok. I was getting tired of running anyway (seemed like we was always running from something
no? Shore Patrol, cops, cab drivers, pissed off pimps, instructors, etc. etc.) They let me finish up - I still had two kids in school and all that so that was good of them, but it was a bit of a fight
early on. That bureaucracy ain't real benevolent. But yeah, I'm ok. I can still kick Leroy's ass. How's Weaver doing? I tried Leroy's e-mail address and it got kicked back. Mike's
e-mail address on the site is the DD782 hook up, and I tried that. I still see Doug Gantenbien once in awhile also, he's riding merchant ships no, retired BMC, got a wife and kid and home here in San
Diego - remember him? Had a brother on the Rowan also, a snipe as I recall. He's doing good, looks about the same, but Doug looked 72 in 72. I remember Doug and BMC Mull used to have a time share
deal going with the same hooker out of one of those Honcho saloons. Looked like a boiled cat. Think Doug wanted to marry her, but she wouldn't convert to Baptist (didn't like snakes). I heard
Tommy Matthews Rowan BM2) retired in Japan, was living there not real long ago. Sam Bell (Rowan BM1) died in the P.I.
"Dutch" Menke wound up handling dogs in the Navy Canine Handler
Program, went MAA I believe. Think at one time he might have been running a tug. I did that for awhile too, lot of hours but good stuff. Tight crew, lots of action, more or less. I dropped a fender on
Dutch's head once on midship station, wasn't a hard target, he had a size 16 head. Yeah, Dutch could pitch some sea stories...you got it, a regular Orson Wells in boondocks. Dutch had to
supervise, swinging a paint brush would wear him out in 9 minutes, he's the main reason we never had any vanilla ice cream, all we had was that strawberry shit that used to taste like
....well...strawberry shit I rekkon.
I didn't get back to the states until about late 75, went
to a dive unit on North Island, SERE training billett, went into a 6 floor barracks - first three floors were all women. Heaven on earth. About 32 section duty to boot. Dive pay, instructor pay, made
E-6, single.....why does time roll over on us like a big fucking horse? Man you nailed it Chuck - it were a party, and we didn't even know . But hey, we ran for daylight, that's for sure. Might
have done a few things different I guess, if I were a strong Christian....but if we had eggs we could have ham and eggs....if we had eggs.
P.S. Newbold retired as C.O. of the brig @ Miramar - ain't that a kick? That boy
knew what was on both sides of the glass. I remember doing three days in San Francisco City Prison with him after a brawl in Sam's Hoffbrau on the Embarcadero , after a double header at Candlestick
Park....Leroy was there, Glanzer too (passed out in the back of a car).....Hipner also. A "hippie" hit Newbold in the head with a hot dog as I recall, and the ball started. Chairs, tables,
glass. blood - shit - that was before the fight started! Cop knee capped me running out, felt like a dog ate my leg. Anyway, Shore Patrol sprung us , Greg came up with $200.00 for damages - we caught a
friggen bus to Seattle and caught a ferry over to Vanouver to hook up with the Rowan. Man, was I glad to see that boat. We got nailed for missing movement, but the old man suspended it, after listening
to Greg's bullshit....and the dude DID have a line of righteous bullshit. True story. Magic times Bro.