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birdguy

Day 1...

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1 minute ago, birdguy said:

Then why did the US Army and US Marines have to invade Guadalcanal, Tarawa, Saipan, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa?  And have you forgotten the Enola Gay?  I would say if anyone were responsible for single handedly ending the War in the Pacific it was the crew of the Enola Gay.

BTW...how many of you remember that today, December 7th, is Pearl Harbor Day?  How many of us even remember it in real time?

Noel

I do, and always will remember this date which will live in infamy.  Also August 6th and 9th.

And while I agree Col. Tibbets and his crew played a huge part in that final saga, the men who designed and built it also contributed quite "heavily". 😉 

In fact to honor them, I did this post in the screenshot forum when I flew over Trinity in the sim:

I'm not old enough to remember it real time, but I can only imagine how the news and Roosevelt's speech must have impacted the country (Well I know based on history, but can't imagine huddled around the radio and actually hearing it.)


Regards,

Steve Dra

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34 minutes ago, birdguy said:

Then why did the US Army and US Marines have to invade Guadalcanal, Tarawa, Saipan, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa?  And have you forgotten the Enola Gay?  I would say if anyone were responsible for single handedly ending the War in the Pacific it was the crew of the Enola Gay.

BTW...how many of you remember that today, December 7th, is Pearl Harbor Day?  How many of us even remember it in real time?

Noel

Perhaps single handedly was not the best choice of words.  Part of the playful hyperbole Steve and I often engage in.  The US Navy was literally choking the Japanese empire with one of the most effective blockades that no one knows much about.  The population was literally starving to death.

The negotiations regarding Japan's surrender were already well underway before Truman dropped the bomb, which some claim was more for Russia's benefit.  The final sticking point had been Japan's insistence that the Emperor remain in power, to which the US only agreed to after the bombs were dropped, and the US had its successful public debut of its nuclear weapons.

Again, not taking away from anyone who fought and sacrificed.  The sacrifice of the marines is well documented.  As were the actions of the crew of the Enola Gay.

And I don't doubt that the use of the bomb was preferential to an invasion.  But there is some argument as to whether it's use was actually required to bring about Japan's surrender, or perhaps was the opening salvo of the cold war that was to follow.  

Edited by wthomas33065
spell check Enola Gay....stupid spell checker.

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Just now, wthomas33065 said:

Perhaps single handedly was not the best choice of words.  Part of the playful hyperbole Steve and I often engage in.  The US Navy was literally choking the Japanese empire with one of the most effective blockades that no one knows much about.  The population was literally starving to death.

The negotiations regarding Japan's surrender were already well underway before Truman dropped the bomb, which some claim was more for Russia's benefit.  The final sticking point had been Japan's insistence that the Emperor remain in power, to which the US only agreed to after the bombs were dropped, and the US had its successful public debut of its nuclear weapons.

Again, not taking away from anyone who fought and sacrificed.  The sacrifice of the marines is well documented.  As were the actions of the crew of the Ebola Gay.

And I don't doubt that the use of the bomb was preferential to an invasion.  But there is some argument as to whether it's use was actually required to bring about Japan's surrender, or perhaps was the opening salvo of the cold war that was to follow.  

Agree....we all not there was no "Single hand" that ended the war....you could also look at the horrific night fire bombings of Japanese cities that was starting to have an big impact, and in the EU theater the Mighty 8th's continuous bombardment of German war machine factories that greatly contributed to that part of the war's end.  And of course if you're a huge fan of the "Band of Brothers" series, you know that even the "lowly" rifleman contributed in ways we'll never know. (one of my favorite stories of that historical period).

You have a slight misspelling of the aircraft....but probably an auto-correct issue. 😉  According to what I've read about the story, they barely got off the end of the runway with the weight of the AC, the bomb of course and all the fuel.  Can't imagine the actual thoughts going thru Col. Tibbets' mind when he pushed the throttles forward, knowing everything that would transpire that day...if they made it off the island.


Regards,

Steve Dra

Download my FSX, P3D paints at Avsim by clicking here
Get my DC-6 paints at flightsim.to here

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48 minutes ago, Steve Dra said:

Of course as you know Charlie, as Brownshoes, we were above all squids!   EA6 huh?  Massive beast!  I remember we lost one in the Med when I was in as our ship tagged along the Carrier taskforce. 😞  Was a night trap, got past bingo and could not refuel, took the barricade but was too fast and broke thru it.

When were you in?  East or West Coast? What Carriers?

 

No EA6 just EKA-3b.  VAQ129 (my last squadron) switched over to the EA6-b just as our detachment got back from Westpac in 1971.

I was in from 1968-1972 aboard CVA-60 Saratoga Med cruise in 1969 and Westpac aboard CVA-19 Hancock 1970-71. 

VAH10 and VAQ-129 out of NAS Whidbey Is. Washington.


Charlie Aron

Awaiting the new Microsoft Flight Sim and the purchase of a new system.  Running a Chromebook for now! :cool:

                                     

 

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41 minutes ago, birdguy said:

Then why did the US Army and US Marines have to invade Guadalcanal, Tarawa, Saipan, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa?  And have you forgotten the Enola Gay?  I would say if anyone were responsible for single handedly ending the War in the Pacific it was the crews of the Enola Gay and Bock's Car.

BTW...how many of you remember that today, December 7th, is Pearl Harbor Day?  How many of us even remember it in real time?

You were wanting another Marine Corps story.  Here's one that I hope will end these arguments.

    The Young Marine

I was standing by the rail at the bow of the ship watching the flying fish soar out of the bow wave. It was my favorite spot on the ship and I spent hours there watching the fish and gazing out at sea.

The klaxon sounded as it did three times day and the voice boomed out over the speakers, “Now hear this.  Now hear this. Sweepers man your brooms.  Sweepers man your brooms.  Clean sweep down fore and aft.  Empty all trash over the fantail.  Restricted men sign in at the purser’s office.”

Shaken out of my reverie I made my way to my bunk in the troop compartment to read another chapter of  Forever Amber, which even though written almost a decade earlier was the porn of the day.  It was a well worn copy having been passed from Marine to Marine and some of the pages were missing.  Probably the most erotic ones.

The ship was the USS Calvert, APA32, an attack transport that had seen action during World War 2, carrying a thousand or so Marines to Korea.

We had already traveled from San Diego to Pearl Harbor and were now in the middle of the Pacific Ocean about 3 days out of Honolulu sailing toward the eastern horizon.

The noon meal announcement drew my attention away from the pages of the book and I made my way along with a thousand other Marines to the galley where we stood in a long line waiting to be served the standard lunch fare, a hard boiled egg and a ladle of beans.

After getting my tray filled with chow I went to the stand up bench about chest high where we hurriedly gulped down our food and left the galley to make way for the troops behind us. 

By the time I got back to the deck to make my way to my spot on the bow to start day dreaming again the klaxon sounded.  “Now hear this.  Now hear this.  There will be a talent show for the Marines in the forward cargo bay at 1400 hours.  There will be a talent show for the Marines in the forward cargo bat at 1400 hours.”

Well, that will be a break from the boredom I thought.  And at 1330 hours I joined the crowd of Marines clambering down the ladders and through the passageways and hatches to the forward cargo compartment.

The cargo compartment was empty except for a makeshift stage.  The Marines in the front were sitting on the deck and for the rest of us it was standing room only.  But it would be something different.  A break from the boredom.

Most of the acts were pretty terrible.  A wannabe juggler who couldn’t juggle.  A harmonica player who played off key.  A trio of singers trying to sing a parody of Good Night Irene that went something like:

“Sometimes she sleeps in pajamas, sometimes she sleeps in a gown, but when they’re both in the cleaners, Irene is the talk of the town...”

The rowdy Marines in that cargo hold hooted and hollered and whistled and cheered and booed at almost every act.

Then a very slight, blonde, young Marine ascended the makeshift stage and took his place.

The crowd were still hooting and hollering and hurling friendly insults to the young Marine on that stage when he began to sing acapella in the most beautiful tenor voice you ever heard.

“Oh Danny Boy, The pipes, the pipes are calling
From glen to glen and down the mountain side
The summer’s gone and all the roses falling
It’s you, It’s you, must go, and I must bide......”

Within seconds after the young Marine began his song all the hooting and hollering and cat calling and rowdiness disappeared from that cargo hold.  The only sound was that song echos bouncing off the bulkheads.  The transformation of that group of rowdy Marines into a silent audience was like magic.  

I’m sure we were all thinking of the homes we left behind and the place we were bound.  And I would guess more than one of those rugged Marines had a tear in his eye and a lump in his throat.

The Marines demanded two more encores and when that slight, young Marine left the stage he was crowded with Marines patting him on the back and wishing him well.

I don’t remember what that young Marine’s name  was.  I had never seen him before or since.  But once in while when I reflect back on my service I think of that young, slender Marine who could hold a cargo bay full rugged Marines in the palm of  his hand on that one day long ago.

And I wonder what ever happened to him.
 

Noel

Wow....quite the inspirational story!  Told in such a way as to feel as if I was there.  You have a nice gift of story weaving Noel.   I've been on that bow many times myself (although the stern view at night is pretty special too when the ship's screws are churning up the green-glowing sea plankton)  🙂 

We usually had a pod of dolphins riding the bow wave if there were any sea creatures with us....I've seen the flying fish before skimming over a calm sea and its an amazing site, but never caught them doing it our bow wave.

On my last cruise in the Med, my OINC quipped a rather poignant statement that still puzzles me to this day.   In my day in the Navy back in the 80s....they shortened it to "Sweepers, Sweepers man your brooms, give the ship a good sweepdown fore to aft....and I remember the last statement in that announcement was "The smoking lamp is lit"...not that I smoked.  Anyway, after the announcement...my whole Det was on the flight deck of the destroyer we were on (CG-26, USS Belknap...it has a sad history), prepping for a flight.

After the nightly announcement for sweepers....the OINC said...."We've been out in the middle of the Med for 3 months...the ship has been sweeped down every day, twice a day.  After 90 days in the middle of the ocean...where is the dirt coming from?"  Still scratching my head. 🤔


Regards,

Steve Dra

Download my FSX, P3D paints at Avsim by clicking here
Get my DC-6 paints at flightsim.to here

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10 minutes ago, charliearon said:

No EA6 just EKA-3b.  VAQ129 (my last squadron) switched over to the EA6-b just as our detachment got back from Westpac in 1971.

I was in from 1968-1972 aboard CVA-60 Saratoga Med cruise in 1969 and Westpac aboard CVA-19 Hancock 1970-71. 

VAH10 and VAQ-129 out of NAS Whidbey Is. Washington.

Ahh...yeah sorry I mistyped....meant the mighty A3 🙂.   I remember when my Dad was stationed in Rota, Spain, there was a VQ squadron there, I want to say VQ2, the Sandmen...but memory is failing.  I know there were EP-3s there...but I thought I saw EA3's there too.  Anyway...all super secret stuff 🙂  My Dad worked at the "Bull Ring" at Rota...I have a feeling you may know what that is. 😉 


Regards,

Steve Dra

Download my FSX, P3D paints at Avsim by clicking here
Get my DC-6 paints at flightsim.to here

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3 hours ago, Steve Dra said:

After 90 days in the middle of the ocean...where is the dirt coming from?"  Still scratching my head. 🤔

Where most of it comes from......US.  Dust is mostly dead skin cells.  Mmmmm.  Doesn't that make you feel all warm and fuzzy?    For the "deck" I imagine crystalized salt mixed in with other stuff from evaporated sea spray contributes, not to mention dirt from corrosion products on the deck from both the deckplate and deck equipment, not to mention, other "stuff" that gets left on the deck.

I can also imagine a good share of it is also boondocker residue......But none of it comes from the officers, because we all know they float 6 inches off the ground and their stuff doesn't stink (grin).

One of my most memorable moments on a sub, was when during a manuevering watch, I got to be conning tower phone talker.   It was pretty much a tradition.  Your last underway maneuvering watch, you got to be phone talker going heading into port.   It was special.  I had been up in the conning tower a couple of times while we were on the surface.  It's magical.   So little of the ship is visible while on the surface it almost feels like you are flying 20 feet off the surface of the waves.   I also did my share of lookout watches on board LST  Racine while I was in ROTC.   Midwatch on the fantail, in the middle of summer.   Wow.....

My relationship was love hate, to say the least.  Somedays, I'd wake up and wonder why the heck I was still here, and the next day I'd pinch myself and wonder how I was so lucky to get paid to do this.  

Going Port and Starboard during shiftwork in drydock was an example of the former.    Getting paid to live in Hawaii, Spending Christmas Eve in the Vatican partaking in Midnight Mass with Pope John Paul II, or a swim call in the middle of the Caribbean were examples of the latter.

("Hey, what's that guy in the conning tower with the Rifle for?".......He's there in case there are sharks sighted....Sharks!?, he can hit a fast swimming shark?.....He doesn't shoot the shark, he shoots the swimmer furthest away from the boat....)  

Edited by wthomas33065
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Thought I'd drop in here for a bit. I believe I'm probably older than most of the people here. I was almost a teen-ager when Pearl Harbor was hit.  Was lying on the floor at my uncles house in New Rochelle, NY listening to Glen Miller playing 'Elmer's Tune' on the radio when they broke in for the announcement. Not a clue what they were talking about. Unfortunately, the shooting ended before I could get in. A couple of my friends from junior high and high school could pass for older and made Saipan, Tinian and Iwo. I managed to get my turn in Korea.

Regarding the comments about the Submarine Service. They may not have won the war single-handed, but it can be argued that without their successes and sacrifices it would have been a much different war in the Pacific. Their killed in line of duty was something like 20%. My first duty station after Boot Camp was at the Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, NH.  Several  WW2 boats were there for refitting. One I remember was Odax. We also had two operational U-Boats, 2513 and 3008 as well as U-505 which was in bad shape. 

Now, as to the Submariners. We Marines held them in such high regard that they could get away with almost anything. Sailors would come in through the gates from Liberty swinging and swaying, covers on the back of their heads, sleeves rolled up(embroidered dragons showing) and we'd bring them up short, unless they were wearing Dolphins. If they were sober enough to make it to their boat without falling into one of the empty drydocks we'd let them go on. We never enforced petty discipline on Submariners.

Birdguy, I returned to the States from Japan in 1954 aboard Calvert. I had been there 14 Glorious months with 3rMarDiv.

 

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You might have a couple of years on me Guns. 

I also served in Japan in the 3rd MarDiv after Korea.  I was in the 3rd Ordnance Battalion at Camp Fuji.  I flew home in 1956 for discharge in a C-97.  I had some terrific liberties in Fujioka.

Noel


P3D, FSX and FS2004 are still alive and kicking!

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