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Printed From: Rontini Submarine BBS
Category: General
Forum Name: U.S. Submarine Related
Forum Description: Submarine Related Topics
Printed Date: 20 Jan 2019 at 11:12am
Software Version: Web Wiz Forums 11.04 -

Topic: Qualified
Posted By: TSpoon
Subject: Qualified
Date Posted: 15 May 2018 at 2:07pm
Subject: Qualified 55 years

Fifty five years ago on 5/15/1963 at Gitmo I was awarded my Dolphins. Two days earlier on 5/13/1963 I sewed on Electricians Mate Third Class.

Thus in a two day period I went from EMFN(NQP) to EM3(SS) and found that the water at Gitmo was warm.

As they say, "What a long, strange, fun filled trip it has been".

T.Spoon, EM2(SS) at the end

Posted By: JrKrup, Skimmer
Date Posted: 15 May 2018 at 7:00pm
Just be glad you didn't qualify in Dutch Harbor, Kiska, or Adak. Dead

Jon Krup, Skimmer - Minesweeps

Posted By: gerry
Date Posted: 15 May 2018 at 9:09pm
Next year will be 30 years for me (yeah, I'm just a pup compared to most of you old pharts). Location: near Andros Island.

How about the rest of you? How long? Anywhere interesting? Jon, did you get your SW pin? If so, when & where?

USS Simon Bolivar - SSBN 641 (B)
USS Henry M. Jackson - SSBN 730 (B)
USSVI - Wyoming Base

Posted By: JrKrup, Skimmer
Date Posted: 15 May 2018 at 9:13pm
I was in and out before the SW pin came to be. Didn't have to qual on the minesweep like a boat sailor did. 

Jon Krup, Skimmer - Minesweeps

Posted By: ftg1ss
Date Posted: 15 May 2018 at 10:00pm
Next year will be 40 years for me. During the awarding of my fish, the CO prefaced his remarks with a statement about waiting to see how many hits we got during the post-overhaul WSAT that was going on during that underway...we went 8 for 8 and I got qualified! Big week for me, got  my fish, made 2nd class and aced the WSAT!

Posted By: Dr. Stan
Date Posted: 15 May 2018 at 10:40pm
On 16 April 1962 during the 0800 muster topside aft of the sail LCDR Skirm, CO of the Queenfish, SS-393, awarded to me and a couple of other fortunate sailors the coveted silver dolphins.  We were tied up in the nest alongside either the Nereus or the Sperry off of Ballast Point at Buoy 23 (I think).  There was no pier there at the time.  It was a sunny but cool San Diego morning and the diesel smoke from other boats which were warming up their main engines before getting underway, which usually happened on Mondays, wafted about us and blended with the smell of salt water.  It was great.  A glorious morning, indeed.  Earning those dolphins was one of the most significant events in my life at that time.  Still is in the top 5.

A month later I was promoted from ETRSN(SS) to ETR3(SS) and Tom Sawyer, who also had been promoted to ETR3(SS) at the same time, and I took over dual leadership of the deck gang.  Life was good and all was well in the heavens and on earth.  This state of bliss lasted about one (1) month,  Then it was off to a month long school of the boat conducted by one our chiefs in a classroom on the Recruit Training Center preparing us 9901's for nuke school.  A month later we went on to nuke school at MINSY to commence the metamorphosis from diesel boat sailor to nukie-poo.  Turned out that the time spent in the school of the boat prep was not wasted and was actually quite useful.

BTW, I never tested the injection temperature of the water in the San Diego bay.  We were inboard in the nest and being tossed overboard would have resulted in being bounced off of the tank tops.  Not good.  I did drink my dolphins at a party, though.  But it was just beer.  Thank goodness.  A guy on the Edison almost croaked from alcohol poisoning after drinking his dolphins.  And, in those days, the ridiculous custom of "pinning" was not done.  That was still a Marine thing then.  I think.

It has been my experience that folks who have no vices have very few virtues.~Abe Lincoln
SS-393, SSBN-610(B), SSBN-624(G), SSN-591
USSVI Life Member; Holland Club; Plank Owner, Smoky Mtn. Base

Posted By: Bgurls
Date Posted: 16 May 2018 at 8:04am
Anniversary coming up.  May 18th, 1960, Yokosuka harbor, USS RASHER.  Cannot believe these fish are 58 years old.

SSR269,SS580(CO),SS582(XO),SSBN634,SSBN619,AS18(XO),SUBASE PH(XO),SUBSCHOOL(XO),SUBPAC(FLAG SEC),PERS42(DETAILER), CSS1(Chief Staff Officer)DAV(Life Member)VFW(Life Member)

Posted By: Sewer Pipe Snipe
Date Posted: 16 May 2018 at 8:50am
From one film I saw at Swimmer's school, not only is the  water at Gitmo warm, it is full of sharks. 

Had I done everything right throughout my life, the World wouldn't have noticed.

Posted By: Tom McNulty
Date Posted: 16 May 2018 at 9:03am
Received my dolphins on 12/7/1964 around half way through a patrol. The off watch missile gang, XO, and myself mustered by the WTD going into Aux space. The LT who awarded the dolphins real name was Davy Jones. The XO stated this was to be the second day of infamy, one I shall not forget. So no dunking ceremony. When we returned to Holy Loch it was off to the Enlisted Club for a sampling of the top shelf booze. Started the shots on the port side working my way to the Starboard side. Somewhere in the process the floor came up and smacked me. No recall until the next morning. Who knows what happened in between or with whom.

USNR Beaumont, TX,
USSVI Life Member
Mid Atlantic Base
Holland Club

Posted By: Kwn
Date Posted: 16 May 2018 at 12:46pm
This year will be 47 years. December 1971 about halfway through patrol.

Posted By: Richard
Date Posted: 16 May 2018 at 4:49pm
This year, January was 58 years. On Carbonero '59-60 WestPac. Amazing how time flies. Made EM3 in May 1960 then to Nuc. School at MINSY in June 1960. Good times in the old BOQ they we had as living accommodations. 

SS-337, SSN-595 Plankowner, Holland Club

Posted By: 610ET
Date Posted: 16 May 2018 at 5:51pm
October will be 50 for me.

After about 15 months at Charleston Navy Shipyard and associated trials I was determined to finish up on the first patrol which I was able to do.

Amazing experience.

Posted By: SaltiDawg
Date Posted: 16 May 2018 at 6:12pm
Great to be able to Qualify with two months sea time + trials.

Posted By: gerry
Date Posted: 16 May 2018 at 11:09pm
I know you were talking to 610ET, but that was the same boat (pun intended) I was in. Spent my first two years on Simon Bolivar in the yards, command wouldnt authorize us to ride other boats to get qualified. I think when we left after A+B+C trials, only about half the crew was SS. We did an ORSE on the way to AUTEC/TRE, got my fish on the way from that to DASO/OT/FOT. Drank my dolphins in that tiny enlisted club on Port Canaveral before venturing out to the Dollhouse in Jacks. Good times, indeed.

Re: pinning - we called it "tacking on". When the CO pinned me, he pushed the pins through the little "frogs" on the back... winked at me and told me I'd thank him later. He was right. Had about 30 guys lined up to ensure my fish were on tight. I recall a similar ritual when making rate (the "tacking on the crow"). It never even occurred to any of us back then that the practice was abusive. 

Anecdote - (supposedly) the tacking thing dates to the Middle Ages, when a King was knighting someone, amongst all the other rituals, the King would ask the prospective knight if he would "take the buffet" (that's buffet as in "hit" not as in "all you can eat"). Anyway, no self-respecting knight would refuse, and any other knights present, including (lastly) the King, would strike the new knight square in the chest, then the King would say something to the effect of "Let that be the last you take unanswered". No idea if it's true or not.. learned that from some SCA re-enactors when I was a lad. Might be total BS, but it sure sounds good.

USS Simon Bolivar - SSBN 641 (B)
USS Henry M. Jackson - SSBN 730 (B)
USSVI - Wyoming Base

Posted By: 610ET
Date Posted: 17 May 2018 at 10:53am

Back then we had 1 year (two patrols) to qualify which was approximately 6 months on the boat, 4 months of that at sea.

Reporting aboard during a yard period delays the process but it does provide an opportunity to see a lot of the systems when they are opened up. One doesn't have to be underway to trace/learn systems.

Once trials start things start to catch up. At that point the boat is in the water and even when not at sea there are quals available.

In my case by the first patrol I was pretty far along. As I recall that took about 30 days. That patrol was only about 45 days and we were on 4/8 watches so while finishing up there wasn't a lot of rack time.

Like everyone else, I wanted those fish.

Posted By: Palm Bay Ken
Date Posted: 17 May 2018 at 3:02pm
Qualified Silver in 1/57 in USS Grampus (SS523)  
Qualified  Gold in 1/69 in USS Gudgeon (SS567)
Wonder if I'll get a gold star on my Holland Club patch for the second 50 year anniversary in January?

Ken Wiltshire
SS-206/SS-523/S1C/SSN-578/Ole Miss(NESEP)/DLG-14/SS-563/SS-567/SSN-584/CSS6/NavSafCen/
York County Public Schools/Virginia Beach City Public Schools/Retired

Posted By: 610ET
Date Posted: 18 May 2018 at 5:34pm
Originally posted by Palm Bay Ken Palm Bay Ken wrote:

Qualified Silver in 1/57 in USS Grampus (SS523)  
Qualified  Gold in 1/69 in USS Gudgeon (SS567)
Wonder if I'll get a gold star on my Holland Club patch for the second 50 year anniversary in January?

I would say that you earned it!

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