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View Full Version : This one is for BDPopeye and the rest of the Navy guys here on this forum ..



hank2222
06-18-2011, 11:17 AM
My Dad joined the Navy right before WW2 and was at Pearl when Dec 7 happened ..he was on a Destoryer and served the whole war on four diff destoryer in the navy ..

So i searched around the internet and found a few diff photo's of the old days in the Navy Destoryer berthing compactment and here you go ..To me this was the navy not what it has become over the years with diff type of bedding or need for more space ..

My dad told me a few storys about life aboard a Destoryer and he said he would never traded it for the world and the only reason i found out i could not go to the Navy when i joined the Army at 17 ..it was my mother who felt that she did not want me to wind up somewhere after the military without any type of training or job skills and she went into the local army recuiting place and picked out jobs and she was the one who picked out the job of beening a Mp in the army would get me a job in a local PD there in our state after i put my four years in ..

When we talked about the changes inside the military i will say that i miss the old military over the fact of you got to know the people around you in a open bay barracks or berthing compactment ..

My dad said the two things that the navy taught him was 1-he could live in a confine space and not be bother by it and 2-was you learn alot about a person who lives in a confine space on board a ship and that teachs you alot when it comes down to the line in battle..he could sleep through anything and i watched him go to sleep on the floor of a tornado shelter we had and sleep through the night and get up and go to work the next morning by the sending the night in the shelter

he would say the new guys all took sometime getting used to the life on a Destoryer and he said they allways where the one's could never get the hang of liveing like we did..

he would also say that the old mattress set up with there rope or spring hooks where the best night sleep a person could get with them hooked up or rewound around the metal frame set in a way to make the mattress pad fit you and the mattress and make it more comfortable for a good night sleep ..

he once got into trouble because he took the red toliet seat off the toliet and put a regular toliet seat on the area and he was bought up before to explain to the captain why he did and he told the captain this statement ..

sir we have been at sea now for over four months saight sir and we have a limited amount of space in the area and since everyone who has gotten into trouble is allready known sir ..i think it would a better use of space to remove the red seat and replace it with a normal one because of needing the space..

The captain goes your right and had him go around and change out all the enlisted men's area toliet where the red seat was beening used and replace them with a normal seat ..it was part of his job on the ship after the ship had been at sea for so many weeks to go and replace them with normal seat covers and when the ship pull into port some where it was his job to replace them the normal ones with red seat covers ..

he told it would come up in the plan of the day on the ship for changeing of the toliet seats ..he did that the whole time he was on that ship ..

here is a picture of the socalled red toliet seat ..if you owned the navy some time on the enlistement becauce of you catching something after a port vist you had to use the red seat and nothing else ..

when you had the basic and it want you needed to live in the world of a Destoryer and here is some photos of that era

JUNKHO
06-18-2011, 11:38 AM
Hank(2)x4 - Great story and pics. Thank you for sharing.

Ordie
06-18-2011, 12:25 PM
Thanks Hank!!
Great story and the photos brings back a lot of memories.

In the 1970's during the Carter era, as a cost savings measure, many of the 'old racks' on WW2 era ships, were re-used on newer ships including the CVN's. Many of the old timers would take dibs on the older racks and us newbies were stuck with newer ridged "coffins".

Life on smaller ships were appealing to 'black shoe' navy types. Smaller crew, good synergy, more ports and chow was the appeal. But not good for those who get sea sick easily.

hank2222
06-18-2011, 12:57 PM
i went with him to a couple of there reunions and him and the Captain one of the ship he had served on was telling about the XO on the bridge dureing one storm where they had put mop buckets next to each station because they had become so seasick at the time..

he was like no one ate for three days saight on the ship because of the storm and it was watching a shark feeding fenzy after not eating for that long on the ship that night he was like you could put a half cooked turkey infront of those guys and it would have been gone in seconds

he also got told on about a little trouble in Hawaii with the local police dept and a high speed chase around Honolulu one night where he was trying to get my mother back to her barracks on time and not get her into trouble over beening awol that night ..

socom6
06-18-2011, 02:17 PM
Respect to you Hank for sharing some of you dad's memories. May God bless your old man.

bd popeye
06-18-2011, 02:59 PM
Thanks for sharing Hank. Interesting story. p-)

A word of truth....If I were old enough to serve in the 40s I would have gladly done so. However... I'm happy I did not serve during those times. Not a good time for a black man in the USN in the 40s,50s & 60s. A lot of bigots ..many of whom were still serving when I joined the USN in 1971. However I've always been one to get along with everyone.

All in all I would not trade my USN days for anything.


Thanks Hank!!
Great story and the photos brings back a lot of memories.

In the 1970's during the Carter era, as a cost savings measure, many of the 'old racks' on WW2 era ships, were re-used on newer ships including the CVN's. Many of the old timers would take dibs on the older racks and us newbies were stuck with newer ridged "coffins".

Life on smaller ships were appealing to 'black shoe' navy types. Smaller crew, good synergy, more ports and chow was the appeal. But not good for those who get sea sick easily.

True.. but not on any ship I ever served on. In fact on the Hanc*k a WWII Es2ex class CV the old stye racks were completely removed and the coffin type racks were installed.

39 years ago on the JFK I remember old salts saying the JFK was the first ship they had served on with proper toilet seats and doors & bulkheads in the toilets. Also the first ship they had seen with all coffin racks. I know on the FDR a Midway class CVA they had a mixture of the old and new style racks..

You guys do know we have a sea story thread. Read through it! You will be amused.

Popeye's Sea Stories (http://www.militaryphotos.net/forums/showthread.php?153479-Popeye-s-Sea-Stories)


aaarrrvvv..I remember me first day aboard the JFK.. I arrive at night . The Big John was in port anchored out in Rhodes Greece. After a harrowing ride from the airport to fleet landing we took a liberty launch out to the JFK. What a massive and awesome sight all lit up with friendship lights. I got checked in ..kinda sorta..I was given a bunk in a compartment with two other shipmates that had the habit of..To be continued..

Popeye's Sea Stories (http://www.militaryphotos.net/forums/showthread.php?153479-Popeye-s-Sea-Stories)

D-Mitch
06-18-2011, 05:02 PM
Thank you hank2222 for sharing with us these photos and your father's memories! A big thank also to bd popeye who contributes with his knowledge in any naval thread! Thanks guys! :)

bd popeye
06-18-2011, 05:24 PM
^^^^ Thanks mate!!

hank2222
06-18-2011, 05:35 PM
[QUOTE=bd popeye;5710532]Thanks for sharing Hank. Interesting story. p-)

A word of truth....If I were old enough to serve in the 40s I would have gladly done so. However... I'm happy I did not serve during those times. Not a good time for a black man in the USN in the 40s,50s & 60s. A lot of bigots ..many of whom were still serving when I joined the USN in 1971. However I've always been one to get along with everyone.

All in all I would not trade my USN days for anything.

my dad told a few things about those day's and he could never understand why and how the USN worked ..he did work as a pretty officer in the crew mess for a year and he told that growing up in the time of the great derpression had it effects all people in South Texas where he was born and i think that alone a deep inpression on how he treated people ..

for alot of people do not really know this about the area of Texas where i'm there is a socalled mixed lot of family with both spanish and german sounding names ..my great great grandfather had married a spanish lady back in 1845 era when getting to Texas and so about every gen there is one born in the family that is light skin and fair hair and that was my dad and me in our large family ..

our the family joke was the milk man was comeing around alot to see my mom for she was dark hair and dark eye & south texas spanish devil looking as my dad used to call her as a joke from there first meeting in Pearl

hank2222
06-18-2011, 05:44 PM
at a few of the reunions i went to the guys who where black and worked the crews mess where like they had no problems with him and would come by and stop and talk but there where a few tables that they would not even say one word to the people there ..

i did asked one of the guys who lived close to us in Texas when i dad passed away in 2004 and he told your dad was a saight shooter saight across the board with everyone and some of the guys where ok with him and there was a few that did not like him because he would let them slide out of doing the work ..as the one guy said if dad was in there cleaning you better right along side of him working up a sweat also because most first class petty officers was not going to help you clean the place instead they would be in there little office sitting there doing reports or drinking coffee watching you work ..

the only people he did not ride hard in one area was the night cooks because they did there job and he knew that he was not going to get into trouble with them .but the socalled slackers and trouble makers all where on day shift where my dad could keep a eye out on them ..

Shermbodius
06-20-2011, 11:50 AM
Great stuff. I was on the USS Simon Lake.

commanding
06-20-2011, 12:01 PM
Thank you for sharing, and God bless your Pop! Also...BD Popeye isn't old, or old navy, he is just a young pup!

My father-in-law was still in high school when WWII started but he got his moms permission to join the Navy as soon as possible and served aboard the escort carrier Kitkun Bay, and later was on land in the Marianna Islands. He was proud of his service but never talked about it...unless you pleaded with him. I got him to agree to talk to me while I recorded it about his experiences in WWII, and it was great. That was back before digital recorders and I got the tapes converted to CD digital sound, made multiple copies and gave copies to all three of his sons, all three daughters, etc, as i want to make sure those stories stay alive. He (my father in law) passed away about 9 years ago, and the military tribute at the service was moving (I wrote a letter to the CO of the troops who did it commending them).
The red toilet seat was news to me, I had never heard of that.
Again thanks for sharing this!

ca135web
06-20-2011, 12:44 PM
Thanks, hank2222, for the photo of the infamous toilet trough. I know we didn't have any red seats when I was on a heavy cruiser in the late 1950s, but I'll never forget the rows of black seats (especially during heavy seas). For the younger salts, some things have to be seen to be believed. By the way, the story about the burning toilet paper floating down the trough is a harmless myth.

hank2222
06-20-2011, 03:52 PM
how i found out about was mom and him was haveing a talk and the subect of my messing around with a girl after basic and the subect of the red toliet seat came up ..

my mom told me if i had caught anything i would be outside in the outhouse useing the red toliet seat set up ..at the time i did know it was a joke and my dad later on told me about the toliet and the reason behind it in the navy .