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Where have all the years gone

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
It was nearly nightfall, October 24th, 1983. The Captain of the USS Guam (she's gone now, decommissioned in the 1990's) sounded general quarters, and the entire ship came alive. When we made it onto the decks, we could see that the battle group has spread into a 2x2 flanking formation and was steaming at full speed. I was "volunteered" to go below and assist the ammo techs in preparing munitons for the flocks of warbirds sitting on the flight deck. All through the night, we assembled 2.75" "Might Mouse" rockets, snapping on the warheads (not an approved method, they were supposed to be vised and torqued) You would screw on the warhead, loosen it slightly with the rocket motor in one hand and the warhead on the other, and with a "snap" of the entire assembly, hand torque the warhead into place.

At a little after 3 am (0300) on October 25th, 1983, we rolled the carts of loaded rocket pods onto the aircraft elevators and were raised to the flight deck. The next 2 hours were spent arming the Cobra and Huey helo's on the flight deck. Just before dawn, they came. Grim faced young Marines, in full deuce gear and weapons, climbing quickly and silently into the waiting Huey's.

The blast of air from all those helicopters churning at once, along with the exhaust from their jet turbines, made the hot, stinking air seem to blow in every direction as once. The air was heavy and dirty with the smell of exhaust from the helicopters and the on deck power units. There was barely the hint of dawn on the horizon when the first Hueys lift from the deck, whipping the air into an invisible froth and vaulting off into the morning making their best speed for the island of Grenada, barely visible in the morning light in the distance.

2 days later, the fighting would still be going on, and I would end up flying in to join my unit already on the island. It's all like it was yesterday.

Where did all those years go.
post #2 of 10
They are flying away....the older you get, the quicker they go! You described that so well! I felt like I was there with you!
post #3 of 10
lol i was still in high school then.
But yea, real life does seem to make the time go by to fast.
post #4 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by theimp98 View Post
lol i was still in high school then.
But yea, real life does seem to make the time go by to fast.
I was Jr in High School in Oct 1983, it seems like last month.

You write really well, Mike.
post #5 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pami View Post
I was Jr in High School in Oct 1983, it seems like last month.

You write really well, Mike.
I was.........5
post #6 of 10
Ok I was 13 months....

You write about that in detail like my step-father talks about some of his missions.
post #7 of 10
That was fascinating. You should do more writing!
post #8 of 10
Geez, we have a bunch of youngsters amongst us, who are barely out of diapers!

I ask myself that question just about every day: where did all those years go? It seems like just yesterday MY SON was in diapers, and now HE'S changing them on my precious granddaughter! I absolutely LOVE being a grandma , but I don't enjoy getting old!

That was a touching story, Skippy - and you wrote it so well..

~KK~
post #9 of 10
Let's see....October 25th 1983.....I wasn't even born yet. I wasn't born until over a year later.

P.S. That was a great story Mike. And you wrote it so well. You could be a writer.
post #10 of 10
I find myself asking that question a lot, Mike. Were you in the Navy or the Marines? I didn't know the Guam was decommissioned - my b-i-l served on it, also way back when.
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