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Christmas deployment

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Kwn View Drop Down
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Joined: 05 Jan 2016
Location: Maine
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Kwn Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 Dec 2017 at 12:51pm
One Christmas always stands out in my mind was 1975. We were in refit in Rota and half of the 6th fleet was sent to Naples and the other half to Rota for the holidays. I remember the Kennedy was anchored out in the harbor and various other targets were tied up to the piers. One duty night I was assigned shore patrol duty at the EM club. Standing there all 150 pounds of me with an arm band and web belt holding a little wooden billy club, that was all but impossible to remove from its holder, and a club full of drunk skimmers, I knew nothing good could come out of that mix. I decided then and there that if anything broke out I was going to ditch the belt and dive under the table in the lobby. Fortunately, nothing occurred but needless to say I wasn't a happy camper. On a more somber note the USS Belknap which had just barely survived its collision with the Kennedy and the subsequent fire that ensued, was towed in and tied up to the pier just aft of the Spanish carrier Dedalo. It was erie and sobering to see the completely dark and burned ship knowing the tragedy that had befallen some of the crew.
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