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You have traveled back to 1973!
Entries are posted by the year the writer arrived, so be sure to check either side of the year you're looking for to find your old buddies, shipmates, and sweethearts!  I'll update this page as I receive your warstory! No anoymous reports - only if you're willing to put yourself up to the ridicule of the world will you be entered into this Guestbook!  Also, please note that the email addresses listed are those at the me the entry was received - some of them from 1997!  Sorry if they don't work now...

Send in YOUR Story NOW using the convenient fill-in-the-blanks form!

Go see a Photo Album of those early days!
See Mike Bodi's photos from 1973 on FLICKR!

April 1973-April 1974
Steve Park =

I really enjoyed your Diego Garcia pictures.  It brought back memories.

I was a Seabee there.  I noticed that the first barracks states that no Seabees moved in.

Although there were no Battalion Seabees that moved in, there were about 30-40 Public Works Seabees that moved out of the Hooches into the 1st barracks.  

Thanks for the posts.


Steve Park

jan 73- to Dec.73

Norman Talbot =

Citizenship = USA

Service = USN

Outfit = NMCB-74

My_Warstory = Diego was an experience Ill never forget.  I see other entries from the same deployment and i remember some of them.  I remember when BU1 Stone died there from a heart attack.  I was one of the "good timers" and I still have my knee high blue tennis shoes we all ordered.  I have an album of pictures but it's in my home somewhere yet to be found!  I remember Jimmy Don, Jim  Peddiciord, Brian "bear" Barrington, William Greenwood, Gary Riddle, Dean Hurst, Billy Chewning, Gene Clifford, Fred Mavroudis and others.  I have dreams about that place all the time in which I am re-deployed there again.  I wouldnt label them as nightmares but just dreams.  I had my 21st birthday there in Oct. right before rand r to Bangkok.  Hopefully I will find my album and post the pics-I have several.


Larry Fowler BUCN =

Outfit = MCB 74 Gulfport Miss.

My_Quest = To Find Fellow Seabees

My_Warstory = Try to find fellow Seabees who remember me. I started out on BU1Charlie Donavan block crew and contacted Coil Poison and ended up in the infirmary and after 30 days there was assigned to Senior Chief Jim Morgan as Company Clerk.I was a witness in a Court Marshall on the island. Looking for anyone who remembers, ANYTHING ??????

8 November 2017

Joelisa Cook <vampirenerd4272011>

Hey there! My grandad Earshall Miller was stationed in Diego Garcia in 1972-1974. I was wondering if you remember him. Mcb10. Construction mobile. Navy.  He knew a guy by the name of ezell?

Albert Warner =
Service = USN
Outfit = MCB-74
My_Quest = to find shipmates and information about the deployment
VT_of_a_Swallow = as fast as it wants to go
My_Warstory = Tried to get a hold of the guy on here who was trying to get ptsd from the VA but the email was invalid. As I remember we had 4 deaths while there each 13 days apart. Bu-1 Stone (my platoon leader) and EO who got crushed by a crane boom A British Sailor who fell of the boat and got caught in the propeller and a Seabee got stung by a poison fish.
     anybody remember making and flying a giant kite? any shipmates who also went to Vietnam get ahold of me Dan Bower has started a news letter.

Apr 1973 - Apr 1974

Joe Huse =

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN

Outfit = ACTU-4

My_Quest = To catch up with Navy buddies
My_Warstory = What a place to be stationed. I have such fond memories of my buddies at the Radio Station. We lived in the grass huts until our barracks was finished. We had outhouses where we had to drag our waste and burn every night. We built a pier that we anchored out in the lagoon where the reef breaks. We swam with the sharks, barracudas, stone fish and eels. We collected live shells and let the ants eat the slugs, we then washed them, made necklaces, curtain strings for privacy. Huge coconut crabs shared our sleeping quarters, played ping pong at all hours in one of the huts. Drove the jeep and went donkey hunting all the time. My friend Pete and Mike capsized there little boat and we found them the next day on the other side of the island, they were so lucky to be alive, they had to abandon hanging on to the boat because it was being swept out to sea, but they made it to the other side all banged up by to coral. On the ocean side we went lobster hunting a lot. It also rained often and got terribly hot during the day. It was so dark that you could not see your hand in front of your face, but look up and the stars would take your breath away. Got to see Bob Hope USO show, got to go to R&R in Bangkok. My best friend there was Tom Palcher, and remember all the faces but not the names. Mike Stennett, Pete ?, Scott ? All five of us went to our next duty station together (NGR Nea Makri Greece).
  Anyone care to look me up, I have lots of pictures. I live in Dallas Texas.



Name = Alan Hubbard

submit_by =

Citizenship = USA

Service = USN

Outfit = MCB-10

My_Quest = Faulty memories

VT_of_a_Swallow = However fast she can

My_Warstory = With my birthday coming up I got to thinking about how Rod Terry and I celebrated our birthdays on The Rock.  His birthday is 2 days before mine, so we spent the day between getting drunk on some of the cheap assed wine, something Rose`if my memory serves me right.  Don't think I've had as memorable a birthday as that one.



July 1973-July 1974

Ronald D. Harris =

Citizenship = USA

Service = USAF

Outfit = 307th Strategic Wing

My_Quest = I am trying to find any of you guys that were at U-tapao '73-'74 and witnessed the C-5 emergency landing that totally trashed a step van trying to cross the flight line through the jetwash

VT_of_a_Swallow = Columbus My_Warstory = I was riding in my redball van on flight line. A C-5 had an emergency landing. Another step van not sure what section tried to cut behind the taxiing C-5 the van was blown down the flight line tumbling over and over.

I am still having flashbacks and nightmares from this event. I can't find the incident documented anywhere. If anybody was there please let me know I need cooborated statements to establish the validity of the incident.




David Fochs =

Citizenship = USA

Service = USN

Outfit = NMCB10

My_Warstory = Looking for anyone I might have served with. Home base was Port Hueneme. Was sent to DG twice. I would love to show some pictures to my kids. I've lost a lot of brain cells since then, so I don't remember much. I do remember a Ken Binger from Wisconsin.




Alan Hubbard =

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN; Outfit = MCB-10

My_Quest = Faulty memories; VT_of_a_Swallow = However fast she can

My_Warstory = With my birthday coming up I got to thinking about how Rod Terry and I celebrated our birthdays on The Rock. His birthday is 2 days before mine, so we spent the day between getting drunk on some of the cheap assed wine, something Rose`if my memory serves me right. Don't think I've had as memorable a birthday as that one.



march 73 for a uear

jim "jock" gillespie =

Citizenship = UK; Service = Royal Navy; Outfit = Navcomsta receiver site

My_Quest = to catch a swallow; VT_of_a_Swallow = i will tell you when i catch the bloody swallow

My_Warstory = Sep 2015.. well lads its taken me over 40 years to put this in but better late than never. I would love to hear from anyone who remembers the 13 royal navy bods who dropped in on the 13th march 1973 for a year. The first night was a blast as our American hosts got us pissed out our minds. What I remember as a bit of a blur was getting dragged out of our hootch and attending the commissioning ceremony next morning.... welcome to DG.

seriously though I had a great time, the Seabees and USN guys were great the E5 bar was greater.

I spent a lot of time working in the small sales shop flogging beer and wine in the evenings and the Britrep even threw in a c141 flight to Mauritius for a "beer run", and 2 weeks R&R in Hong Kong which sucked as the rest of the island used Bangkok.

Best year of my life and I wish they would ship us back for the 50th anniversary!!!!!

To all of you wherever you are god bless and may your hangovers be very small ones.

If anyone has any pictures they would care to email..many thanks in advance.

ps just heard from John Bright, RN Medical Assistant who joined us in May 73 and who lived in the sick bay..ring any bells for anyone??




Citizenship = USA

Service = USN

Outfit = MCB10

VT_of_a_Swallow = 2XPRS(>5x8}+16






1973-1974 Lost and Found!

Hi there, I am looking for anyone who may have served with my father, David Davison. He was a Navy SeaBee in Diego Garcia between 1973 and 1974, Equipment Operator (E05) and his rank was CN. He was from St. Louis Missouri, stationed out of Gulfport, Mississippi.

Thanks for your time,

Christina Davison <>




Rick White =

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN; Outfit = Communications Station - Plank Holder

My_Quest = Locate fellow "Fleet" Sailors, not that I didn't have lots of buds in the CBs.

My_Warstory = 1973 – Spent the whole year there. Worked a rotating shift in the Communication Center. Was one of the first into the Air Conditioned barracks, shared with some Brits, they taught me a lot about how to drink. Spent most of my time in the hut, playing poker and on the beach. Great place to visit, even one more time, but that is it. Want to get in contact with some of my old buddies and see how this time on Diego Garcia may have had an impact on their lives, I know I will never forget it.




James Lord (J T) =

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN; Seabees MCB133

I REMEMBER THE GROUP OF GUY'S THAT BECAME GOOD FRIENDS. I ALSO REMEMBER THE LONG DAY'S OF WORK AND THE LONG NIGHTS OF PARTYING ON THE BEACH.I also remember the Buddha statue that we got from R&R some will know what I mean. I was also known to not like getting hair cuts. The rock was a good learning experience for me I would like to hear from others that were there. especially the rat pack.



1973 & 1974

 Robert V. Bachtell =

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN; Outfit = MCB 4 HQ Company

My_Quest = reconnect with former CB's

VT_of_a_Swallow = speed of sound

My_Warstory = how are you all doin? just wondering if any of you remember a guy named Bob whom worked in the post office in Pueta Rico? On Diego I drove the ROACH COACH. also cut hair off of your heads n the barber shop. "(WHEN I WAS NOT IN THE BRIG")In the Pi. Partied Hard Lots of the time with a few of you. if you remember me please email. So very many stories to tell......................... more may come



1973-1974 and 1974-1975

Wendell Bumford =

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN; Outfit = mcb10 Aco.

My_Quest = Diego Garcia; My_Warstory = I was on the rock with mcb10 twice once with a detachment in 1973-1974. We were there to help mncb74 and with the main body in 1974-1975. It was a hard place to be, but met some good people. We spent a lot of time in the tree house in the jungle thinking of funny things to make it seem better. Played a little softball. spent time at turtle creek swimming and just getting away. We almost lost a weapons carrier in the ocean. I always hated when the desalt barge broke down and we had no fresh water. We did something's we probably shouldn't have just to make time go by. Don't miss the place just the people. We had some great card games and a good uso show. I can remember sitting in the hooch drinking and just hanging out. Going to Bangkok was fun, went with Charlie, don't remember the last name. Remember Steve Creswell, Wendell Garnto and some others but can't remember the rest. Remember being in the radio station with some people, not good with names.




Name = Paul Moore =

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN; Outfit = Machinery Repairman

My_Warstory = This was my first duty out of boot camp. Home port then was in Davisville, Rhode Island. Don't remember which battalion I was with (Think maybe MCB-74).

Got to island and didn't have any idea what to expect. First time away from home.

Stayed 7 months went back to Davisville, RI.

Got orders to go to Gulfport, MS. Got there and none of the battalion I was sent to were there. I asked were everyone was at. They said Portirico. I asked where is next duty. I was told Diego Garcia.

Nine months later I went back to Diego Garcia for 8 months.

I'm the only person I know of that had two tours on Diego Garcia.

Most of the time I was there I was the one machinist there.

2nd time there received an award for repairing hydraulic pumps at cement plant while there on first tour.



March 1973- November 1973

Mike Stoufflet =

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN; Outfit = H Company, NMCB 74

My_Warstory = Just found this website and not sure how old it is.  I was reading the accounts of the plane trip to the Rock about the plane stopping in Iran.  I remember it well as I too was on that flight.  What I remember was leaving Gulfport and flying north to the Dakotas.  We took a right turn and ended up in Anchorage, Alaska.  There was snow on the ground and the only thing we had to keep us warm was our field jackets.  Think we spent two nights there before flying over the North Pole and landing in Iran.  Just remember we were kept in a fenced in compound and the only excitement we had was watching a bug fly.


I also remember the rain storms that poured down and seeing our equipment buried in sand and water.  Hearing the coconuts hit the roofs when the wind blew, and when the USO show came someone stole one of the trucks to meet the plane ended up in the water.  Booze, food and boredom!  No wonder half of us went nuts chasing sharks and crabs.   At least I didn’t have it too bad.  I shared a hut with a Storekeeper, a Cook and a Master-At-Arms.  Think we were one of the few huts that had a small well stocked fridge, an electric frying pan and a coffee maker.  Don’t think I eat in the galley for over a month.  Did get sick of sliders, bacon and eggs….




Pat Haley <>

I am Pat Haley and I was an E-4 Engineering Aid with NMCB 4.  I was on Diego Garcia in 1973-1974.  I read thru just about everyone war story and I never saw anyone mention the horses of Diego Garcia.  I was lucky enough to take several photos of them on a trip to the old plantation.  If anyone can tell me the final fate of the horses I would appreciate a response.   The other picture is a group photo of all the MCB-4 Engineering Aids.  Engineering Aids were surveyors and draftsmen’s.  We were responsible for the location and elevation of all construction.  In 1973 life on Diego was more similar to a penal colony then todays vacation resort.  We all became young men from our life and death adventures on Diego.  At that time we all hated the place, but I believe it changed all of us.   We worked hard and long in the sun during the day and party just about every night.  Drugs and booze was cheap and available and to this very day I still cannot believe the Federal Government and US Navy turned a blind eye and sent us to Bangkok to recover.  I still believe we were all part of a government experiment studying how young men can survive addictions and sexual diseases.  I survived with fond memories and I hope all my fellow SEABEE’s are as lucky.  If you remember me or see yourself in the photo please contact me.



Barney Meyer =

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN;Outfit = nmcb 74 c co

My_Quest =  aspestosis on Diego Garcia.  I was on the rock from mar 73 until nov 73 i worked on the paint crew and the asphalt crew i was just diagnosed with asbestosis. I just want to know if any body has been diagnosed with the same? 



Dave Glazier =

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN; Outfit = MCB-4

My_Quest = Go back in time- connect with those from the past VT_of_a_Swallow = What ever you make it

My_Warstory = Got to DG and wondered where the hell we were and why.  Remember being told- in the Indian Ocean 3 degrees below the equator- and this would be a base for future protection of oil shipping lanes coming out of the Mid-East.  Well 3 degrees below equator was right and turns out there was a bigger plan that matured to larger scale.  Glad to have been part of it (Easy said now almost 40 years later).  Worked concrete/masonry crews during day-Barracks/Hospital, miscellaneous other stuff-Ran Batch plant for a while and worked AFRTS in evening- used to salute the Russian Trawler with "Back in the USSR-from Beatles- until CO ordered cease order.  Remember the MIG used to flyover everyday around noon for picture taking, and do the wing dip salute to all of us?  Remember the groups that used to fish and catch sharks, had a few occassions where they cut them open to reveal babies- crazy place. Remember swimming in the lagoon out to the anchored rafts one day when someone on shore yelled "shark"- turned around to see a large dorsal behind me- made it to the rafts to look and see a slow moving monster in the water- stayed on the raft until almost sunset scared as shit, and braved the swim back hoping not to be dinner for a Great White.   Seahuts for living- we added on to ours with concrete floor, short block walls high roof and open screening to give a open living room where many congregated daily along with rats/chickens/flies.  Highlights- Bob Hope show- DG then was a rare and beautiful place that many would not see- great skies, stars, and pristine cleanliness - Mail delivery- Fresh Milk and fruit-Lowlights- Being away from the world-

We were a great group of hard working S.O B.'s, young and doing our part; - commaradre was great, certainly a time to experience.  



George Martin =

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN; Outfit = MCB4

My_Quest = wats a quest??  VT_of_a_Swallow = WTF is that?????

My_Warstory = Just remembered working on the communication center(?) in Puerto Rico(?), getting harrassed by some fat chief, and one of the guys throwing a stainless steel marlin spike from about 4 or 5 stories up at him when he was leaving. We were hanging on the rebar for support, our asses swaying in the wind. And Dave Glazier(?) fukin around with the concrete pump while I was hanging on to the hose. He actually had me in the air 6 stories up spraying concrete all over the place. Boy, was that ever fun.

Oh my........


   I am trying to get help from my former shipmates on some information to help me with my VA claim, they told me that I have ptsd, but they want more information on what happened in diego garcia. I can remember what happen but they want a little bit more information from other people that had the same experiences. I greatly appreciate it.



Name: Meyer, Bernard L

Branch: NAVY

Rank: E-2

Rate: BUa

Company: Charlie Company

Extent: March 1973- November 1973


    This is my war story I was in Diego Garcia from March of 1973 to November of 1973 in the NMCB 74 in Charlie Company. I worked with the asphault crew and the paint crew. I went through many hardships when I was on the island and it started before I even got on the island with the plane ride over. I was on the C141, and while we were departing from Turkey to Diego Garcia they had technical difficulties, and we had to make an emergency landing in Tehran, Iran, and as soon as we got off the plane we were told by Senior Chief Murphy " Don't go outside you have no papers and they think you are mercernaries, if you walk outside you will be shot and there is nothing we can do about it". We were there for 24 to 48 hours, I cant remember the exact time but it felt like a life time. I was only 19 and I never left home before and I was scared to death. This experience has never left me there is not a day that goes by that I dont think about it. When I got to the island I was there for about month and a good friend of mine that I knew since before I came to diego died of a heart attack on the island. Then around the same time BU Pelt went went snorkling and found a body at the bottom of the lagoon,  I was never told who he was or how he died. needless to say I never went near the water since then. Then there was a crane operator who died when the boom from the crane feel on him and crushed him to death. What made It worst of all is I had to stand watch over the refigeration units where the bodies where stored to make sure they didn't thaw. Every Time I tryed to get leave they wouldn't let me go fearing I was going to desert. I put in multiple times for discharge for fear that I may die, but I was turned down. Even after my term was up and I was back stateside, the island never left me. I have nightmares almost every night, there is not a day goes that I dont think about all I went through. If there is any body out there that was in the same unit as me please contact me, I want to see how all my shipmates are doing.


Thanks for listening




Sometime in '73, I think

George Martin =

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN; Outfit = MCB 4/C or D Company

My_Quest = Share some old stories VT_of_a_Swallow = Huh?

My_Warstory = Was checking the website for any new postings. Thought it might be fun to share some stories with guys from my company. Need to update everybodies email addresses. Some things just "pop out". Like Snake Booher getting his ass sunburned so bad he got put on report for "Damaging Gov't Property". The Chinese contractors where Ken Ha and I use to jog down to and eat, teach English, get drunk, and have the General Contractor drive us back to camp. Getting buzzed by the MIG and then the MIG gettting chased by Phantoms. The Golden Palace Hotel in Bangkok. Or, the the special hooches assigned to the gay corpsmen. Would like to hear from you guys.


Dennis McIntosh =

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN; Outfit = NMCB-4 /charlie company

My_Warstory = Read some of the stoies from other guys in 4 that was on the rock and brought back memories.Use to hang at the hut with buddy's like Jeff Hass, Gary Billings, Al Hastings, Rick Debolt, Brad Richardson, and others playing spades and hearts. My story would be walking the reef for shells at midnight and a rain storm started and all the sea snakes and morey ells came out of the rocks and running everywhere and one ran up my pant leg! Then it was a race to the beach once we got the eel out of my pants without biting me. Another good one was when Hastings and Chandler and a few other steelworkers got the idea to catch the big shark in the lagoon and built a big hook and nailed it with chain to a piling on the dock and put steaks on the hook and the shark took off with the piling.

Dates_Aboard = 1973

Name = Paul Mozdzanowski

submit_by =

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN; Outfit = MCB-74

My_Quest = To  visit the Rock one more time

VT_of_a_Swallow = It depends if it is liquid or solid????????

My_Warstory = The flight was long and I remember getting off the Plane C-141 at the far end of the runway.  We all got out and grabbed our seabags and were told to stretch out and start walking towards the other end picking up any paper, cigarette butts, pebbles etc on our way in.  Welcome aboard.  The coral was blinding.  I saw many accidents there that I recognize from the other posts.  The guy that was taken from the bottom of the ocean.  THe guy who had the crane accident and there was another that beleive it or not tipped a ditcher on himself  going up a slight incling.  He was medivaced off the island and I never knew if he made it or not.  I was there when the nicest guy in the world  drove a truck through the chow hall.  I saw a man eat a sharks eye in the EM club.  

     I remember having a few days left on the island and one of the BU's decided he was going to swim home.  Ironically he was from my home town.  I was volunteered to go get him because I made a swim from the fishing barge before when SEALS came to the island looking for fresh meat to join their ranks.  (Thats a whole nother story).

     I remember  the beauty of the island and the stars at night, the Russian trawlers and having to get the Captains jeep from the ocean.  Someone would steal the jeep and during low tide drive it out on the coral, turn it back to the island and turn the headlights on.  I hated duty on those nights.  We never got to go visit the other side of the island but I've seen some great pictures. I have often said give me the woman of my choice and all the comforts of home and I could live there forever. 

     After getting out I completed college, and spent a total of 11 years in the active and reserves.  Lost my first wife to cancer in 1985.  I have since raised a family working construction part time and am a full time Postmaster getting ready to retire.  I think a house boat on lake Mead sounds good.


Dates_Aboard = 73-74

Name = Phillip

submit_by  =

Citizenship = USA

Service = USN

Outfit = MCB74

My Quest = Varnado

VT_of_a_Swallow = going backwards not a lot

My_Warstory = I guess my biggest victory on "The Rock" was getting over the hangover on my 19th birthday. EO1 Pritchard, Stump Brewer, JJ "Pollock" Carroll carried me to the em club and we got tore up from the  floor up. We worked at the rock crusher needless to say the big rocks were safe for the next few days. Be good to hear from some buddies from that era.   MCB74 Alfa Co 73-74 [...]


Paul Mozdzanowski =

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN; Outfit = MCB-74

My_Quest = To  visit the Rock one more time

VT_of_a_Swallow = It depends if it is liquid or solid????????

My_Warstory = The flight was long and I remember getting off the Plane C-141 at the far end of the runway.  We all got out and grabbed our seabags and were told to stretch out and start walking towards the other end picking up any paper, cigarette butts, pebbles etc on our way in.  Welcome aboard.  The coral was blinding.  I say many accidents there that I recognize from the other posts.  The guy that was taken from the bottom of the ocean.  The guy who had the crane accident and there was another that beleive it or not tipped a ditcher on himself  going up a slight incling.  He was medivaced off the island and I never knew if he made it or not.  I was there when the nicest guy in the world  drove a truck through the chow hall.  I saw a man eat a sharks eye in the EM club.  

     I remember having a few days left on the island and one of the BU's decided he was going to swim home.  Ironically he was from my home town.  I was volunteered to go get him because I made a swim from the fishing barge before when SEALS came to the island looking for fresh meat to join their ranks.  (That's a whole 'nother story).

     I remember  the beauty of the island and the stars at night, the Russian trawlers and having to get the Captains jeep from the ocean.  Someone would steal the jeep and during low tide drive it out on the coral, turn it back to the island and turn the headlights on.  I hated duty on those nights.  We never got to go visit the other side of the island but I've seen some great pictures. I have often said give me the woman of my choice and all the comforts of home and I could live there forever. 

      After getting out I completed college, and spent a total of 11 years in the active and reserves.  Lost my first wife to cancer in 1985.  I have since raised a family working construction part time and am a full time Postmaster getting ready to retire.  I think a house boat on lake Mead sounds good.



NAME = Charles A. SOULE


VT of a SWALLOW = Depend on velocity of initiator of swallow.

E-MAIL = charles

NATIONALITY = United States Citizen




SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = Actually, I Have a Real Story To Tell







1973-74, 1975

NAME = David Engel., EO3, D2C

MY QUEST = Immortality

VT of a SWALLOW = 139 mph




UNIT = UCT-1, TAD MCB-4 in 73-74

RANK/RATE/JOB = EO4---discharged in '76

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = Geo-political Rabble Rousing

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = This is a No-Shit Drinking Story

MY WARSTORY = Dg was actually attacked while I was there with UCT-1 in '75. At that time there was a beach on the lagoon side near the EM club and the de-sal barges. An old rusted barge was hard aground on the beach; it had been there since God-knows-when. The hold was full of sand. Our unit was there to drag a concrete-lined pipe out to a tanker anchorage but we had some down-time. Don't give Seabees down-time. They just start looking for shit to blow-up. And there it sat---a big, fat inviting target. We'll get this rusty tub off the beach for you. We'll blow it to pieces. Which is what happened. One large piece of steel hit the roof of the waterfront warehouse used by the DG navy (the Mike boats and pontoon-can tugboat). All occupants immediately surrendered. A subsequent shot landed a bigger chunk right in the front yard of the chapel (yes, DG had one of those---most of us heathens couldn't have told anyone where it was). Navy chaplains can get mad; I was laughing too hard to hear his exact words. The attack on DG ceased.

HERE'S ANOTHER:  Ron Kotz tells the stories better than I do (go figure---he was a wordsmith, I was lower than an E1). My best story would embarass the shit out of Roger St. Jacques(73-74). Shout out to Steve Skillington wherever you are. No one believes that Double Diamond would sell for 15 cents a can. Before my first trip there all the older guys in UCT-1 were warning me about the heat and humidity at DG. I got there and wore shorts and tee shirt every day. I slept in a hammock under cocnut palms (except in high winds). I thought "what the hell are they talking about ---heat and hunmidity." I've lived in Houston almost all my life except for 6 years in New Orleans. DG was a breeze compared to New Orleans in August. I got back to Davisville and asked those guys what the heck were they talking about. I still didn't know until I found out that they were from Minnesota, Michigan, and Maine. One man's hell is anothers heaven(almost).






NAME = Gary R. Crawshaw

E-MAIL = Later Good Buddy

NATIONALITY = american

SERVICE = Navy Seabees

UNIT = Charlie Co.  Block tender

RANK/RATE/JOB = E3 only served 3 yrs

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = Stroll Down Memory Lane SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = This is a No-Shit Drinking Story

MY WARSTORY = My name is Gary.   One of my war stories. I was in NMCB 74 charlie Co. My boss was Charlie Donovan. We would work 6 days a week on the island. We finaly convinced Charlie to give us off saturday. Well yours truly made dam sure we never got another Saturday off Lolll.My buddy Ketchum woke me up about 9 in the morning. We proceded to drink 3 bottles of that fine aged wine of the highest grade Boones Farm. Well that just wasn't enough. So we proceded to go and get some more higer quality of fine wine 2 gals of Tunder Bird Lolll. Well thats all she wrote. Wine and me don,t mix and that is an understatement.I decided I was going down to the quadrangle and wip up on some officers. Charlie walked by me and held me down and told me to get back up to the hooch. There I proceded to punch out all the screens in the hooch and finaly my dumb ass passed out. Charlie woke me up very early Sunday morning with a staple gun and told me to get busy. Shook his head and laughed and said no more Saturdays for you. Well today I can proudly say I have been sober for 13 yrs. Thank the LORD and it feels dam good.  GOD BLESS everybody Gary R. Crawshaw


1973 I think. It's knid of a haze

NAME = Mike Rea

MY QUEST = Strollin

VT of a SWALLOW = As fast as it can go till it disintegrates



UNIT = Delta Co.

RANK/RATE/JOB = BU2 Worked on the Vortac site and the generator building at the end of the island.

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = My Time There is Lost in an Alcoholic Haze, Help Me Remember!

MY WARSTORY = I remember landing there and playing poker (A LOT) on the end of the pier we built over the water. Ran a block crew on the Vortac building. Beautiful island clear water. Can't figure out why the ppl there now complain, they have it made. Swimming pool, etc.

I remember the rats running in the rafters of the hootch at night. Bankock R&R was fun. Really not a bad deployment. Jungle rules vollyball. Painting "Fu** Russia" on the tops of the trailers in Russian for the flyovers. We had to paint over them when the CO found out.


Jan 1973 to Sept 1973

NAME = James Peddicord (Jim)

MY QUEST = Connect with friends from the Past on Diego Garcia

VT of a SWALLOW = Who knows




UNIT = MCB 74 Charlie Company and maybe Delta Company

RANK/RATE/JOB = I was a Bu3 at the time. I got out of the navy in Guam on our next deployment Aug.1974. rejoined the Navy as a fleet sailor Aug. 2006 and retired as a chief Oct 1993. I retired in Guam worked for the U.S. post office and U.S. Immigration and homeland security. I ve been living in the philippines for the last 3 years. Im 55 and thankfully perfectly fit and healthy and having fun. I have been drug and alcolcol free for the past 25 years.

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = Stroll Down Memory Lane

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = Please Select a Title For Your Story, or Select 'Other'

MY WARSTORY = I have so many memories I would know where to start. Read Ken Haedrichs stories who was a gud friend of mine and it brought back alot of memories. I worked on the hot roofing crew and was hauling up hot tar to Jimmy Don when he got burnt with the hot tar, and walked him to sickbay. I remember when we first got to Diego Garcia there were few vegetables or fruit it seems and getting constipated and going to my friend at sickbay and he gave me some pills and told me not to get to far from the head for a while. He was right. I remember floating in the Lagoon from Point Marianne to an area near the main camp on a 2 man raft that I had brought over and going through a school of Dolphins and swimming with them. I spent hours in the water collecting shells. One shell in particular was a cowrie or onyx found on the inside of the lagoon past the causeway down towards the t Site that is not found anywhere else in the world. The site I think has since been destroyed by dredging. I remember riding in the cattle car to work at the T site and I site. I remember a guy stealing a euclid earth mover and raming it through some sea huts. Diego garcia was my first experience with atolls and how beautiful they are and the sea and amimal life in abundance. I m sure much of it has been destroyed by this time.


Several times in the first part of 1973

NAME = AW2 Kevin Young

MY QUEST = Reliving old times

VT of a SWALLOW = 9.8 m/s every second until this occurs. He will then maintain the same speed all the way down until he hits the ground. Then his velocity is zero m/s.




UNIT = VP-40

RANK/RATE/JOB = Anti submarine operator Petty Officer 2nd Class

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = Stroll Down Memory Lane

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = Actually, I Have a Real Story To Tell

MY WARSTORY = Walking in the lagoon about knee deep and I stepped on an octopus. Scared the hell out of both of us. The water boiled around my foot an the octopus left in a cloud of ink. Or may be I could tell you about our 2nd flight engeneer deciding to sunbathe nude on the beach. Light skinned German decent. Fell asleep on his back. Woke up about three hours later. It was three weeks before he could put on a flight suit to go Back to Iwakuni Japan.



From:  Mike Bell <>

just wanted to let you know I was on diego garcia in 73-74, was the navcomsta postal clerk sent to the cb's.

It was a hell hole back then. no barracks just tents and huts.  but was a good time.  see if anybody remembers the russian sub pulling into th harbor.  the barrackis were finished in 74 and I was able to move into th airconditioned rooms.  they were great compared to the huts.  please contact me if you have any questions.


                                                                 mike bell pcsn


USNMCB 10 Det Chagos 1973 / Mcb 10 Main Body 1974

NAME =  BU  T.A. Grant

MY QUEST =  My Best

VT of a SWALLOW =  0 mph




UNIT = Pipe Line - Block Crew

RANK/RATE/JOB = My rate was a BU however at the request of SC Asher I did a mess hall tour  with the UTs on the water pipeline.

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = Stroll Down Memory Lane

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = This is a No-Shit 'How I Put One Over On My Senior Chief' Story

MY WARSTORY = I thought I spent alot of time on Diego. I see these civs posting decades on the isle.5-73 TO 12-73  , then 7-74 to 3-75 , I have my share of stories.This one is about a guy ,(I assume), he became known as the Phantom Shitter. Every time there would be a concrete pour scheduled,we'd go out in the morning and someone would have taken a big old dump in the forms. It did'nt matter if it was the roof on the gym , the deck in the barracks , or a colum or lintel on the block walls. There would be this smelly gift left for us the night before.Nobody was ever caught , or copped ,however there was plenty of speculation. If you finally cop to this , I promise it will be our little secret , RUBEN M.


Jan 73 to Sept 73

NAME = Bob Grunow Jr

MY QUEST = Deputy Island Commander's Yeoman




UNIT = Deputy Island Commander Yeoman, Captain's Yeoman


MY INTEREST IN DG IS = Stroll Down Memory Lane

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = Actually, I Have a Real Story To Tell

MY WARSTORY = I worked for the Deputy Island Commander Leon and helped him administer the island drug test.  Man, was everyone on drugs?  I was offered more money to  take guys names off the list.  But that was all up to Leon.  After a while I got moved in the Captains yeomans office.  What a great job there.  But I sure remember alot of guys dieing over there.  Anyway, after I got out of the Navy I got married and our first home we had a flood and I lost all my  pictures of Diego Garcia.  If anyone has any extra photo's they could send me.  Please E mail me. I remember playing volleyball and softball almost everyday over there.


NAME = Mike F.

MY QUEST = To find what was the drinking water  use from the desalt barge was it lead pipes






MY WARSTORY = I was station there in 1973 with the see bees, I Have stomuch and Liver cancer. just want to know what kind of water did we drink? I know it was from a desalt barge , but were the pipes that carried it us leaded or not, Thank you.








SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = Actually, I Have a Real Story To Tell

MY WARSTORY = This is Ronald D. Mckinney's first daughter and I am trying to find out just little bits of information on him.  He passed away seven years ago and some things just don't add up with what he told us and what we have found out on our own.  My father was a bery intellagent man.  Loved to write and loved music.  I'm sure he was a drinker and a smoker.  If anyone out there knows anything about him or remembers him can you please help me out.  I would be glad to hear from you.  Rhonda

 December January 1973

NAME = Daniel Dubac

MY QUEST = Picture of me with Dallas Cowgirls on Navy Ship Stars & Stripes



'73-'74, i think

NAME = George Martin

MY QUEST = trying to remember when the hell i was there.....

VT of a SWALLOW = wtf?


NATIONALITY = Californian

SERVICE = Seabees

UNIT = MCB 4 C company

RANK/RATE/JOB = BU3 worked the batch plant and drove the t/m's

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = My Time There is Lost in an Alcoholic Haze, Help Me Remember!


MY WARSTORY = ok, some of it is coming back... got better ones ( re: Bangkok and the Golden Dragon  Hotel), but this one I can remember better. Couple of buddies (Randy "Snake" Booher & Kenny Ha) decided that we needed to see more of this island paradise and took of on bikes. We got to an area that looked like it had prairie dogs.  As we started going past the holes, these red crabs started coming out of the holes snapping their claws and chasing us down the path. Some of them were kinda big and their claws could reach past the pedals. Since Snake was from Lookout Mtn Tenn, he had never seen anything like this and slowed down. Of course Kenny & I had to make a difficult choice.  Turn around and get Snake or pedal faster and survive to tell the story.  Well, I'm telling the story. Anyway, Snake had to keep kicking them away so he could pedal. I think this was the time his handlebars became lose.  Well, he made it out, but when we got back to the hooch, we told everybody about the crabs, so after drinking a little beer we decided that crab had to taste better than the "beef" hamburger we had usually been treated to. We went back in a couple of duece n halves.  Armed with sticks and potato sacks we must have caught a couple of bags full.  But not before we started tossing crabs at each other just to see if they could fly, I guess. Anyway, we did a lot of good work there.  Anybody remember the Chinese contractors on the other side?  They were dredging the area for the "advance Trident submarine base" we were suppose to be building.We found out what we were building by reading time magazine and seeing the pics the mig kept taking every week. What was the Austrailian's name who mooned the admiral's plane?




jan, 73 to mar, 73

NAME = COTTON   aka  K. L. Wells

MY QUEST = Survivor

VT of a SWALLOW = Who cares


NATIONALITY = american

SERVICE = mcb 62  delta co

UNIT = paint crew with fat albert and tommy tull

RANK/RATE/JOB = civilian working as a civil servant on the army base here at home  Ft. Riley  Kansas. I was a builder for 4 yrs 2 mo. and 29 days for uncle sam and loved it.diego garcia, ncs guam, edzell scotland, yokosuka japan and homeward bound to dorothy and toto land,  aka  Kansas

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = Stroll Down Memory Lane

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = Actually, I Have a Real Story To Tell

MY WARSTORY = I was in a haze for a few years, courtsey of Uncle Sam, But am thankful for the time and many great friends. Our reunion, our third is in october 2006 , and I am still looking for john somma, wally ellis, steve mitchell, turk, hobo, jim bolding, dave crafts, tinker,and others. my address is  Also gone but not forgotten,   Leo Chabot RIP



November 1973 through June 1974

NAME = Bill Weatherly

MY QUEST = To find budies that may have suffered the same loss as I have; Hepatitis C

VT of a SWALLOW = Ask Monty Python, He's a Brit!

E-MAIL = Not Now



UNIT = Delta Company, BOQ, and Medical Facility, Block Crew!(Shit Can Crew)

RANK/RATE/JOB = BUCN while in Diego, BU-3 during Guam Deployment and several NJP's.  Now, who cares, not military.

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = My Time There is Lost in an Alcoholic Haze, Help Me Remember!

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = There I Was, Passed Out in My Room

MY WARSTORY = I remember so many!  How about the time BU-2 Nelson had to ask the shit can crew to return the beer.  Freighter pulls into lagoon and freight offloaded via whirly crane onto mic-boats and beach landed.    R-T forklifts used to offload palletized freight onto lowboy trailers (including beer).  One person stationed at a critical slowwwwwww turn in the jungle who jumped aboard trailer and started flinging cases of beer into jungle.  Yeah, we gave it back, almost all of it.

Then there was larry Fish BU-3, from Klamath Falls Oregon who started a race riot on the ball field that no one could stop.  I Remember Fish being busted to E-1 before recoevomg a bad conduct discharge.

Then there was the desalination barge!  Yeah running out of water after scrubbing up and having to walk to the lagoon to rinse the soap off.

Most importantly!  I would like to hear from any other Diego vet that has contracted Hepatitis C.  I am in the process of trying to show a connection to the VA.  Please call me at (907)563-9621.  Thanks,  Bill Weatherly


1973,1974 M.C.B. 10 Echo Company

NAME = James McDANIEL, known as Chicken Man Mc Daniel


MY INTEREST IN DG IS = Please Select The Category That Best Discribes Your Interest in Diego Garcia

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = Actually, I Have a Real Story To Tell

MY WARSTORY = Hello I AM ChickenMan McDaniel, this is my story. The first time I was on Diego Garcia was in 1973 with Echo com. ,I was a steel worker . Believe it or not I realy did not now where I was going, volenteered for the asighnment . As it turned out there I was out in the middle of now where, stuck on an island, with a bunch Sea Bees, Englishman and no women!!! So when it came time to go on R.R. It was time to go to Bangcock, Thailand. While I was there the Thai Gov. was ovar thrown have lots of pictures still to the day. Then it was time to back to home base,tour was over after six months of deployment. Rretun time 1974 to 1975 of January. M my dutyies were building add on to officers mess hall, then laying out duct work to hospital,on to barecks five ,then on laying out rebar for swim pool,and fianlly back to camp maintenence where I stayed the rest of tour .Now there was a time a bunch

of fellow steel workers went on a shelling exspadishion. When all the sudden the guys out front started to run with out saying a thing, all the sudden I new why I yelled out bees very big bees I was hit twice and was on very fast run . Still to the day I have two scars one on each leg. Most memerable moment was when Miss U.S.A. show , came to town. I thought of all the ladys Miss Minesota was best looking sexy. Still I do have my California drivers licence that Miss Ill. sighned my base ball glove was stolen out mail whn I sent it home, which all the Miss U.S.A. Sighned. I use to do a chicken call when I was playing in the out field and it seemed every one would hit the ball to me.


Sep 1973 - Feb 1974

NAME = Ron Henderson






UNIT = OIC Satellite Comm. from Harold E. Holt

RANK/RATE/JOB = Then CWO2 now retired RMCM

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = Stroll Down Memory Lane

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = Actually, I Have a Real Story To Tell

MY WARSTORY = Enjoyed my stay in Diego Garcia working on the installation of the site and doing a lot of snorkeling for shells.  Accumulated a great collection.  Went back to H.E. Holt as Comm Officer then on to Commander Carrier Group 2 in the Med.  Retired and am now an administrator and associate pastor of a large local church in Baton Rouge, LA. Would like to hear from someone I served with.



1973 to 1974

NAME = Craigster

MY QUEST = To hold the EM-club "Grail"

VT of a SWALLOW = Only me and the troll knows


NATIONALITY = Poor white boy



RANK/RATE/JOB = E-3 at the time. retired

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = Want to Return When the First REAL Club Med Opens

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = I am a Born Liar, and Want To Tell About All The Sex I Had on Dodge

MY WARSTORY = I have posted a War Story before, but I recently transferred some of my old 35M slides to digital.  I want to post them now.

     Has anybody watched the movie CASTAWAY with Tom Hanks and said "Oh $%^&*("  That was almost real.  A coconut on the tin roof hootch at 3:00am.  The screaming squirts after eating green coconuts.  The wierd fish that we caught with ribeye steak chunks that we snagged from the chow hall at night.  I gave the steaks out freely because my chief hated me and put me on mess cook duty at night.  How about gaurding the dead people in the reefers at night.  I also saw the Mig flyover.  How about the dead rat that was in the ice cream mix and clogged the pour spout on the machine for the outside movies.  The Brit Govenor would not allow the showing of the movie "Deep Throat".

Anyway everybody have fun and have a good life.

Later Days, The Craigster AKA Mickey Bitsko.

Webmaster, How do I attach photos?   Craigster - Unfortunately the ones you sent were too tiny.  If you can rescan them in a larger format, then  send them to me direct again.


Early mists of 1974

NAME = Michael C. Linson

MY QUEST = Grail of Irreverence

VT of a SWALLOW = African, European, or N. American?

E-MAIL = mcl181"at"




RANK/RATE/JOB = AX-sumthun -Got out as a Frocked AX-2

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = Green Eco-Freak Who Hates How the Brits Have Taken Such Good Care of The Island

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = I'd Like to Share Precious Memories of Drinking/Fishing/Snorkeling/Sailing on Diego Garcia

MY WARSTORY = Actually, I never got drunk in the Navy, nor anywhere else - never was too popular...

At anyrate, it's been fun to brag that I've spent time on an island with no women on it, and I'm out to make up for lost time.  The nervous look on women's faces is almost as spectacular as the tropical scenery on the island...



Sept 1973 to March 1974

NAME = John Lakedon   ETN 3

MY QUEST = gain immortality by posting this on the web

VT of a SWALLOW = damn fast




UNIT = Navcon Sta satelite com det Tad from HE holt in Australia

RANK/RATE/JOB = Did 8 years and got out

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = My Time There is Lost in an Alcoholic Haze, Help Me Remember!

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = Please Select a Title For Your Story, or Select 'Other'

MY WARSTORY = Was sent to that hell hole when the middle east heated up in fall of 73. Played on the com centers softball team and kicked as on all the seabees, took 1st place. drank a lot of beer and shelled the reef at the transmitter site, and ocean side from the downtown area to the reciever site were I worked as tech on An -TSC-54 sat com system.

     Got a real nice tan that lasted almost a year from the time I left the island. Other than that, was exposed to my first expoilts of the stupidity of the USN and the military all together. Saw waste like one would not believe and its ahrd to believe its still going on today.

     Made some good friends and somwe bad friends, but mostly good. Most people dont believe I was ever there but who cares. We had a good time but it was better when we left.




"Watson, Dan" <>

A friend forwarded me a link to your Diego Garcia web site.  I really enjoyed browsing the pictures, especially the old ones.

I was with NMCB 62 when they deployed to DG, and I finished my active duty tour (I was a weekend warrior) in March '73, hopping on the C-130 to Bangkok, happy to be leaving.

No promises, but I have a bunch of slide pictures from my time there.  I will have to dig them out and learn how to use the scanner I bought a couple of years ago!  One of these days ...

Have fun,

Dan Watson



June 1973, also June 1972 until November 1972

NAME = Dan Welander

MY QUEST = See more pictures on the island.  I was with MCB 10, and one of the 1st Americans on the island.






SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = There I Was, Passed Out on The Beach

MY WARSTORY = One of the 1st Americans to arrive on the island.  We went by boat from Bangkok.  I lived in a tent for 3 months, they in a plywood quonset hut.  I spent 7 or 8 months on the island.  I have been to Diego Garcia twice.  I came back in June 1973, with the battalion.  The second time I was there was for only a few weeks.  I would like to find pictures of the battalion from back in 1972 and 1973.  I remember a lot of R&R in Bangkok and Sydney.




NAME = jerry cripe

MY QUEST = retirement

VT of a SWALLOW = english or african?






MY INTEREST IN DG IS = Want to Drink A Lot, Cheap

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = Please Select a Title For Your Story, or Select 'Other'



                    Bywater's RAF C-130 from Gan visits Diego Garcia
Les Bywaters' C-130 - that's Les bringing up the rear with the satchel full of cash.



Subject:  A Brit on DG


     Name is Les Bywaters, ex-Royal Air Force ground crew.

     Visited your DG site and had a very pleasant hour looking around. You have a tremendous amount of stuff there which makes interesting reading - and nostalgic in some places.

     Why nostalgic? And why especially to a Brit Air Force guy. Well, during 1972/73 I was stationed on RAF Gan in the Maldives (about 400 miles north of DG).  Gan was a similar coral island to DG, but smaller and was one island of a group called Addu Atoll. Gan was an RAF staging base, in fact, the whole island was the base, until it shut down in 1976. The DG nostalgia comes from an event that I took part in during late 72 or early 73.

     The RAF flew a party of Royal Marines from the UK (about a dozen or so) to RAF Gan where, after a night-stop, we on Gan then flew them on to DG in our resident Hercules (C-130). This RN/Marines party was, I believe, the first bunch of RN Marines to be sent to DG.

     I remember well, as we flew south over the azure tropical waters of the Indian Ocean, watching a whale for ages and wondering if it was a Russian sub just under the surface - and should we report it. Eventually we saw a rising smudge of what looked like smoke on the horizon - this turned out to be a massive rising column of coral dust from the construction works on DG.

     We landed on the pristine white concrete at DG, unfortunately leaving a set of long black tyre marks, and were directed to a spot near the end of the runway, close to the sea shore.  There we were told to remain in the aircraft while de-contamination measures were carried out. A couple of US guys, dressed in green overalls with gas masks came on board and sprayed the whole interior of our Hercules from 2 foot long, dark green aerosols. Pungent stuff, made your teeth itch.  Later we were told, (jokingly), that we suffered this indignity because we'd marked up their nice, new, clean runway!   I also seem to remember being told that we were the first "foreigner" to land on their runway.

     Anyway, we all disembarked and were "wined and dined" by the SeeBees. We visited a couple of bars and then I visited with the guys running the DG AFRTS radio station. This visit was because I presented a broadcast Country&Western show on our own "Radio Gan" while I was on the island. I was just a regular RAF guy, did the DJ/presenter bit on a voluntary basis - as did all the Radio Gan presenters. Having previously tuned in to Radio Diego, Anyway, I had brought with me to DG some of our BBC radio shows, on LP, as "exchange goods". Had a great day with that crew, and a lot of beer, unfortunately I don't remember names, but did get a bunch of AFRTS LP-type records to take back with me.  One of the "sayings" on DG radio at that time was "It's a great day. If you're trucking around the island, take Radio Diego with you, you'll enjoy the music and we'll enjoy the ride."

     During our visit, as with all "visiting" service units world-wide, our RAF guys indulged in "swaps" with the SeeBees, exchanging T-Shirts, lighters, bits of  uniform, badges, hats etc, in a flurry of trading over a few beers. Then, having seen to the bedding down of the RN Marines we'd brought, we took off. We got permission to do the obligatory lo-fast flypast and then flew round the entire atoll with the rear ramp down so we could all get pictures.  Finally, after another lo-fast we literally flew off into the sunset.

     Great memories of a great day.  I've attached a couple of pics for your interest.  One is from the rear of our Herc showing part of the construction site (don't know where though). The second is a pic of our departure. I'm the guy with the hand luggage (full of AFRTS LPs) bringing up the rear. The aircraft is an RAF Hercules (24 Squadron) in the RAF "tropical" camo of the time. You may note the day-glo emblem high on the fin. This was a Road Runner (Beep! Beep!) which was the emblem of our section on RAF Gan - Staging Aircraft and Servicing Flight (SASF). The third pic shows a Project Reindeer Zippo that  I got that day, and that I still have and use.  Also, for your interest, an aerial of RAF Gan. Not a large base compared to DG, only 600 blokes on it - and no women! Thus our motto - "Not Having". But a great place to be stationed for a year, although most of us didn't know that at the time!

     A month later, back on Gan, we had a visit from a USAF C-130 from DG. Bit of an emergency this was though as one of the US personnel at DG had acute appendicitis <sp?> and the RAF, on Gan, had the nearest hospital facilities to carry out the operation.  He was OK and stayed with us for a week or so.

     Right, good site, I shall visit again.



Service = Royal Air Force

John Needham =

Citizenship = UK

Outfit = 24 Sqn Royal Air Force

My_Warstory = First RAF C-130 THE TRUTH


On the 18 February 1973 doing a morning pre-flight check (I was flight engineer on 24 Sqn XV222) a request came down as to how fast could we get airborne. Thinking this was for circuits and bumps, a slow response (as in no response) till told of CASEVAC (casualty evacuation) task from Diego Garcia. Seems Gan Radio had overheard a USAF C-130 having to abort flight to DG for technical reasons. Anyway, 30 minutes later we were airborne flying South to what we thought would be a tactical landing onto a desert island dirt strip.

Surprise, surprise! There waiting for us was a long strip of concrete. We requested permission to land. DG air traffic asked us who we were. We told them that we had heard they had a medical emergency and we were there to pick up the person.

The scene reminded me of the pacific islands during WWII. A long bit of concrete with dirt piled up along the sides.

We landed and took on board the patient and an American doctor. I was told the guy had intestine blockage. So, taking off and landing at sea level, against normal operating procedures, I did a manual pressurisation of the aircraft to keep pressure change inside to minimum.

Two hours later the patient was on the operating table in RAF Gan hospital. One week later we flew him (and the doctor) out to Singapore on out twice weekly resupply flight.

A couple of weeks later the Royal Navy group were flown into Gan from Singapore by our crew. The next day the other crew flew the group and some Gan personnel down to DG for the day. They were treated royally coming back with tales of the day.

On the 2 March, we were again headed to DG, this time to CASEVAC one of the Royal Navy guys to Singapore. We landed in the middle of a tropical rain storm. When we came to a stop we shutdown the outboard engines because of the ground equipment all over the place, turned into wind and were stuck there, unable to turn because of the wind. After a few minutes the wind dropped and we were able to get onto the parking pan. As well as taking on board the Royal Navy guy, we also uplifted some fuel. Having started our engines, the captain asked if I had the fuel chit. I hadn’t, so down out of the aircraft to ask the American ground crew for the paper work. They denied any knowledge of giving us any fuel.

They had quickly realised that we were operating two crews on the aircraft and they had ‘rewarded’ the wrong crew on the day visit. So, their way of showing appreciation of us saving one of theirs was to ignore the fuel uplift.

The USAF C-130 landed at RAF Gan because of shutting an engine down. They too were expecting a coral strip and were surprised to find a long concrete runway. A few days later (and a few beer parties), having had an engine change they did a big show of farewell and took off. Only to do a circuit and land again. At the end of the runway they stopped and we saw a figure jump out of the aircraft, duck into the nose wheel bay and back into the aircraft. They took off again and this time, all the wheels came up and off they flew.

So, there you have the real background story to Les Bywaters picture and story.




1973 to 1974

     NAME = Craig Hemenway Nickname Mickey Bitsko

     MY QUEST = Just memories

     VT of a SWALLOW = European or African?

     E-MAIL =

     NATIONALITY = Viking/Scottish

     SERVICE = USN MCB 4 Charlie company

     UNIT = Steel worker. Night time runway repair, Night time mess cook, Helped out biulders, Not much high steel on DG except towers.

     RANK/RATE/JOB = While on DG I was a SW, I am now on a disability retirement,I was electrocuted on a inspection job at 6.9KV about 500A. I was a large equipment Agricultural Automations expert with various University Credentials.  PG&E lit me up by accident, at least I think it was an accident.

     MY INTEREST IN DG IS = Want to Drink A Lot, Cheap

     SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = This is a No-Shit Drinking Story

     MY WARSTORY = One morning we fishermen met at the dreaded quarter deck "Glorified Sea Hut" it had a bad boy cage out back under coconut trees. We jumped on what was called a large aluminum "about 45'" Lark boat and we drove out into the lagoon. While out in the lagoon towards the outer Islands the engine quit and then the radio quit, We were rescued by a mike boat.  One guy fell out and was rescued. I used steak from the chow hall for bate. I hooked a large at least 16 foot great white shark, nobody wanted to bring it onboard, it was seen by all on board and it finally broke my 120LB line and steel leader. I think the Quarterdeck was D15? The Lark boat had tractor wheels. We had a garbage can full of beer. We brought in at least 2, 6 foot sharks and barbecued them on Sunday afternoon our only day off. Dean Robinson and Horney Bob were on board that day.Fred Bohnsack did not want to go.   We had a large barbecue on the outer edge of the Sea Huts overlooking the Indian Ocean. We would put the fish and "sharks and tuna" in the shower to keep them wet then invited all for party time. Does anybody remember Blue Nun wine.

     Does anybody remember stomping rats in the chow line or throwing forks and knives at rats running along the beams in the chow hall.

     I was the one who would take FNG's out from the EM club and take them hunting for the real Coconut crabs "NOT LAND CRABS" in the jungle very late at night.

     After DG we all went to Guam.

     Later days Dudes.



Early 1973, with MCB-74

     NAME = Ken Haedrich

     MY QUEST = To not go broke before I die

     E-MAIL =

     NATIONALITY = American


     UNIT = MCB 74

     RANK/RATE/JOB = BU striker at the time/today I'm a freelance writer

     MY INTEREST IN DG IS = Stroll Down Memory Lane

     SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = This is a No-Shit Snorkeling Story

     MY WARSTORY = I arrived on Diego early in 1973, catching up with MCB 74, just a dumb 18 year old kid fresh out of BU A-school. This was quite a cultural switch for someone who grew up in New Jersey and thought NY state was exotic.

     A fellow named Charlie Van Pelt, another BU who had gone to boot camp and A-school with me, and myself were out swimming in the lagoon a few days, I think, after we arrived. We're just screwin' around and Charlie yells to me:  There's a guy down there! I didn't think much of it, but he was really freaked out - so I dive down and there's this kid, sitting on the bottom of the lagoon, and I knew right away the guy was dead, drowned. We pulled him up, shouted for some medics, and I'm telling you it was one freaky experience to see this bloated dead guy just laying there on the beach - not a pretty sight at all. I don't remember the guy's name, but I do remember I stayed away from the lagoon for quite some time after that.

     That was just the start of a real string of bad luck for our batallion. An EO was killed taking apart a crane, a diver died in an accident, and in the hooch right next to mine a BU1 had a heart attack and died one day when he went back to his hut for a nap, I think. I don't remember his name, but he was a good buddy of my platoon leader, a great mason from NY city somewhere, maybe Brooklyn. I think his name was Donovan. Maybe someone knows him. Let me know. Also, a BU by the name of Jimmy Don splattered hot tar all over himself, working on a roof. He was in bad shape for a while.

     Looking back, it was the best of times and worst of times - really lonely at times, because I was fresh away from home, but probably one of the most vivid experiences I've ever had. The work was hell. I humped block and mixed mud for 8 months straight for the BEQ's. I've never been in such good shape since. They used to make us take a shitload of salt tablet everyday, so we didn't dehydrate.

     I remember this happened, and I never have been able to figure it out: one day me and some guys were walking away from the job sight and a figgin' bird swooped down and attacked me, knocking my helmet right off. He came in for a few more tries. Still don't know what kind of bird that was. Anybody know?

     Yes, I'd go back in a minute for a visit. A buddy in the merchant marines has been there several times and says it looks like a country club today. Not then: it was a paradise, but a rustic one, plywood and screen hooches and more than a few rats.

     Anybody remember any of this?

     Ken Haedrich




     NAME = Dave Tilki

     E-MAIL =


     UNIT = Air Ops / Air Cargo,  NAVCOMSTA

     RANK/RATE/JOB = EOCN/EO3, Retired from reserves in 2000 as a EQCM

     MY INTEREST IN DG IS = My Time There is Lost in an Alcoholic Haze, Help Me Remember!

     SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = This is a No-Shit Drinking Story

     MY WARSTORY = I see all the stories about San Migel being the official beer.  I worked at air ops, taxied the plane in , then ran the forklift unloading cargo.   1 141 a week at the beginning, then 2 a week Wed and Sat.  I got to know many of the Air Force loadmasters and began "importing" cases of San Migel from PI.  We had to be careful the Brit Rep didn't catch us, it was sure better drinking than that preserved Bud.  The one time we ran out of beer (everyone knew a Bee cannot function without beer) a local British ship resupplied us by helo , 200 cases at a time,  with 1000 cases of Double Diamond. With its high alcohol content and most of us having been "dry" for a while, it was one drunk night.  Was also a member of the official "Donkey Roundup Team" We chased them all up to about Pt Marianne and they closed the fence at the donkey guard. The next day they were right back at the airport.

     Remember the first C-5? Spring of 74, it was on its way to Israel, could not even go down the taxiway, it was too big, had to park on the runway overnight.  What ever happened to the new chow hall, its only use was to show movies on the outside wall?



April, 1973 through November, 1973

NAME = Arthur E. Coords     (Operations Yeoman, NMCB 74)

MY QUEST = Retired educator: I often prepare aquatic articles for family magazines.

VT of a SWALLOW = ...probably depends on the grub...


NATIONALITY = U. S. A. CITIZEN; SERVICE = U. S. NAVY; UNIT = The one and only  Operations Yeoman in our Battalion, NMCB 74

RANK/RATE/JOB = Several months later, in February, 1974 I returned as a senior to finish school at Florida Southern College, graduating in 1975 and going on for two more years to University of Florida in Tampa, Florida.  Later, taught high school and mostly elementary school. I wrote the children's book THE SPACE APPLE STORY, The Children's Tribute to the Seven Challenger Astronauts, published in 1992.

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = Naturalist/Ecologist

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = I'd Like to Share Precious Memories of Drinking/Fishing/Snorkeling/Sailing on Diego Garcia

MY WARSTORY =    In my very rare spare time on Diego Garcia, because we lost several servicemen to drowning, I was also paid to teach about four servicemen to become lifeguards.  (I was also a International American Red Cross Water Safety Instructor Southeast Asia.) I did enjoy an occasional sail in the lagoon on the few sailfish boats that we had there.  Our battalion helped build the blueish buildings (before they were painted) made from blue coral reefs which were the aggregate used in our concrete.  I was the operations yeoman and helped prepared the MONTHLY,  OPERATIONS REPORTS which Navy Construction Battalions received around the world. We returned to Gulfport, Mississippi during the month of November, 1973.  Since I had been a fleet sailor ported in Nea Makri, Greece for two years, going to Diego Garcia and enduring the humid, no air conditioning...once-in-a-while we used fans to cool our sweat, an a sudden rain shower cooled us off, was eight months (seemed like eight years!) of an unusual experience.  Those sailors and especially those of battalion 33 who were there just before us endured very hot conditions.  Now, I understand that there is airconditioning.  I bet those  coconut crabs still try to prevent jeeps from traveling on the dirt roads we drove on....especially at two o'clock in the morning, deliverying a red cross message or picking up a sudden red cross message for a sleeping serviceman who would be informed that he was on the next flight out to attend a parent's sudden funeral.

     There were absolutely no women on the island when we were there except for an occasional USO show.  It was considered ISOLATED DUTY and some servicemen, working eighteen hours a day, found it difficult, especially because of the heat and because two weeks could pass by without a mail plane

due to a typhoon in the Indian Ocean somewhere. Many of us (due to the Vietnam War about a thousand miles away) could not believe that we would actually get off that  " ROCK ", but we did and the U.S. NAVY  actually flew us off on a large commercial jet...that Diego Garcia runway was just barely long enough as we saw the ocean hardly feet below our wheels!!  We lost five servicemen while I was stationed there.  When a reefer unit (cold food storage) was cleaned-out and we got extra lobster, etc. we knew that a body was being stored in there until a flight out was possible. We slept in hot seahootches with the music of the lagoon waves all night. I do not remember every having mosquitoes, but greyish sandsharks patroled shallow, lagoon waters.  There was talk from that old fishing barge that someone caught a large, struggling fish...and while reeling it in, a huge dark shadow approached that struggling fish... there was suddenly nothing! The stars are huge at night on Diego Garcia. The shells at zero tide are plentiful and beautiful. The coconuts were plentiful and we wore helmets to protect our heads from falling nuts!

     There were passive, but deadly sea snakes and stonefish. Cone shells were supposed to have a poisonous spike. I saw a white moray eel on the oceanside. We wore cut-offs, but neat, shorts and many of us grew beards until we returned stateside. Because of that Vietnam War and the uncertainty

of surviving all that, we probably couldn't enjoy that Island of Diego Garcia as people do now...and only us ugly guys lived women were stationed there at that time. All of us were very, very delighted to land in Anchorage, Alaska, go through customs and make that short flight down to Gulfport, Missippi. Because of my working eighteen hours, especially on Sundays sometimes, I gained a lot of weight as a surprised me when I actually took time to look in a mirror stateside. But, months later, many of us were free....veterans looking for our freedom as I finished school, several years using the timely veterans bill and my experiences helped me to teach school, appreciating what I have and remembering those servicemen who came home early, in a bodybag. Diego Garcia was extremely hot, but the Vietnam War nearby at that time often interferred with a youngman's dreams and hopes. I lost several highschool friends in Vietnam...mostly, I realized that other elementary school teachers, mostly female, have no idea about what Veteran's Day or real veterans actually went through....too many Americans take our freedoms for granted....I realize now that the Island of Diego Garcia, as a communication's station and other purposes is a very important strategic location for our involvement in the middle east area.  We Americans need

to know what is constantly happening in the entire world so that we are prepared to defend freedom...just being there warns other nations!!  Looking back, I am glad I was a part of that Diego Garcia project and I am very proud to find such online....KEEP UP THE WONDERFUL JOB!



73?  Also in ' 77   MCB  62

NAME = Wm. ( Joe) Schick

MY QUEST = You Know who you are. I have'nt forgot the loan.

VT of a SWALLOW = Very tasty BBQ


UNIT = MCB 74.

RANK/RATE/JOB = Steel worker; fab. re-bar,tanks on cosway,steel in fresh water tanks and more

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = My Time There is Lost in an Alcoholic Haze, Help Me Remember!

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = Actually, I Have a Real Story To Tell

MY WARSTORY = I will save this for anuther time,great sight. Been here lets see......7 hours and will be back for more.  I do have a story or two.  Be Safe    "Joe"



1973 and 74

NAME = Ray Headley


SERVICE = US Army - US Army Hospital Bangkok; UNIT = Maintenance & Inspection of medical equipment

RANK/RATE/JOB = SSG E 6 (now retired, touring the USA in a motorhome, today I'm in Florida)

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = Want a Job as Far Away from My Wife as Possible

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = Actually, I Have a Real Story To Tell

MY WARSTORY = You folks had no medical equipment technician on the island, so a liason arrangement was made that somebody would come out to DG on a quarterly basis or on emergency response as needed.  On one routine call, the medical x-ray was down.  I arrived in time for supper and the evening ceremonies, planning to get the x-ray back up first thing next morning.  We flew out in C 130's in those days.  Unfortunately as the bird left next morning, it raked the rear door over some survey stakes in new runway construction, and tore out some of the hydralics.  Plane was loaded with guys and circling in the area to dump fuel.  Got the old x-ray fixed, glad to say, plane landed with no problems - just another day's wait to get off DG. Sure was a nice change to get out of Bangkok and enjoy the shelling and wild scenery in "paradise".




NAME = nick palmer; E-MAIL =

NATIONALITY = mute; SERVICE = usn; UNIT = fuel farm; RANK/RATE/JOB = seaman

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = My Time There is Lost in an Alcoholic Haze, Help Me Remember!

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = There I Was, Passed Out in My Room

MY WARSTORY = but not a room a hut.  looks like a resort now

August 1973 until May 1974

NAME = Al Jarrell

MY QUEST = Hook up with other friends that was on DG


NATIONALITY = American; SERVICE = MCB-4; UNIT = Bravo Company installing underground power at Charlie and Comm site; RANK/RATE/JOB = CE-2

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = Want to Drink A Lot, Cheap

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = Actually, I Have a Real Story To Tell

MY WARSTORY = We helped out on the desalt barges and was always playing poker with the boys from the Ozarks.  One night decided to do some fishing off one of the barges and hooked a 5' shark got it up on deck and started giving birth to a bunch of baby sharks.  We were in sharks up to our butts and did not know what to do with all them little man eaters.  Threw the mother back and kept a couple little ones to put in the fish pond.  Put them in the pond and they ate all the other damn fish.  Live and learn.

     Also if anyone remembers the time when they flew the Air Force captain in for a court martial and she hit the beach early in the morning after the night shift was off then you have been to DG with the Fabulous Four (MCB4).

     [editor's question  :Since I didn't start flying in there until 79 and wasn't PCS until 87-88, I wasn't there for the desalt barges.  How did they work?  Where were they?]

     Ted, the desalt barges were how we got our fresh water.  There were 4 barrages tied together that basically brought in sea water processed it through a distillation process and pumped out fresh water to base.  They would have 2 on line and 2 would be down for maintenance and cycle them like that the whole time we were down there.  They were real close to the water towers.  In fact they were just across the road from the softball field and right next to the club.  We were suppose to take the Navy shower to conserve fresh water but never saw anyone there do it.

     Also the desalt crew was part of Bravo company and whoever chose this crew must of had a flash of brilliance.  Everyone of these guys were from the south around the Ozarks and they new more about distillation then any 10 engineers in the battalion.  That was a good thing and a bad thing.  Good because they were the hardest working bunch of fools I have ever seen, bad because it gave them access to top quality supplies and they extended their knowledge of distillation into the development of a couple of stills on the island.  Damn near got caught when some of the Brits got in a card game with us and got a nose full of good ole 'white lightning'.  I swear to God those Brits were climbing the palm

trees and barking at the moon that night.  Funniest damn thing I have seen in my life.

     I think they knew we had a still because the Brit Rep came in front of the battalion and in a back handed way explained to us what the queen expected from us as guests on the island.  Wrong thing to do to a bunch of rank Seabees that had not seen the world for 7 months.  From that day forward international relations between the "Limey's" and "Yanks" were not much better than in 1776.  It was rather humorous in a way to see the British Navy and the "Bastard Children" (Seabees) of the U.S Navy.  The Brit's were so prim and proper and of course the Seabees were some of the rankest individuals on the face of the earth at that time.  I was always amazed at the fact that the Seabees were always held in a mystic belief somewhere between a troll and orger but when it came to hunker down time who were the first ones they turned to for help.  Anyway to come to a conclusion we decided that the Brit Rep did not want his boys "drinking our buffalo piss and barking at the moon".  That would have be very disappointing to her Majesty.



Nov 1973 - May 1974

NAME = Ron Annis


SERVICE = navy mcb4 b company;  RANK/RATE/JOB = I was a ce3 doing underground cable work, phone and power

MY WARSTORY = No bad war stories.  Still trying to remember some of that place it's  been along time ago.  About the best damn fishing and shelling a guy could ask for.  I was damn glad to get away and go to Bangkok for a week.  That was a good place to party every night.  Hated to leave that place.  I don't think the land crabs are any bigger in the world than what d.g. has.  I always had the damn things in my cable trenches with me.  I actually made the diesel engine on the old deuce and a half run backwards one day going out to the job.  Scared hell out of me.

     Guess I'm proud to say I helped build the place somewhat and I hope America still contiues to whip Osama's ass and the rest of those crazy idiots.


Terry Mross

Jan 1973 - June 1973

NAME = Terry Mross

MY QUEST = Memories and Pride

VT of a SWALLOW = The same as a Seabee heading for the club


NATIONALITY = American; SERVICE = Navy; UNIT = Electrician with NMCB 133; RANK/RATE/JOB = CECN

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = My Time There is Lost in an Alcoholic Haze, Help Me Remember!

MY WARSTORY = Not only did I help set concrete power poles and underground cable, at night I worked on the radio station as "Norton" with Mike "MO" Malone and J.D. "Roadrunner" Norton.

     After what has happend in New York I can say I'm very proud that I was one of the early ones who helped build this strategic base even though at the time it sucked!  Go get 'em, America!

Here's a pic of the "Rat Pack".  We were a bunch of skuzzies, huh.  I can't remember half these guys' names.  I think they were considered the "pot smoking hippy freaks".  [Editor's note:  Yeah, and now (2012) they are all at least 57 years old and qualify for prescription pot for the service-connected glaucoma!]


Terry Mross &
                    the Rat Pack - Diego Garcia, 1973


NAME = Alex Mc Grath

MY QUEST = Contact my old mates


NATIONALITY = Irish; SERVICE = Royal Navy; UNIT = Communications; RANK/RATE/JOB = REM. Plank Owner

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = My Time There is Lost in an Alcoholic Haze, Help Me Remember!

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = There I Was, Passed Out on The Beach

MY WARSTORY = Just like to contact members of RN Party 1002. It all is a little hard to remember due to the amount of beer knocked down. Good times ...bad times..... overall I am glad I was there.



jan 1973 to sept 1973

NAME = Garlin Willigham

MY QUEST = Find some buddies



MY INTEREST IN DG IS = Geo-political Rabble Rousing

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = Actually, I Have a Real Story To Tell

MY WARSTORY = The best part of that fubar rock was LEAVING FOR 6 days of R&R in Bangkok and LEAVING period.

     I learned a hell of lot on that little coral atoll, Refrigerated air is the only way to go when you can get it, there are some really beautiful but deadly fish in the ocean, the little things in life count, there are worse places than Gulport, MS, 70 degree weather can actually freeze your ass off during a typhoon, how to work my ass off 10hrs a day 6 days aweek just for the experience, ass holes come in many sizes and colors, friends come in many sizes and colors, actually being there was not all that bad after I left.  All in all I was a typical SeaBee...bitching and griping.  I do feel like a part of a elite group that served on Diego MF Garcia. (use your imagination on the MF) and I really wouldn't trade the experience(s) for anything. Actually, I wouldn't mind going back for short (3 hrs tops) visit.  Maybe even just a flyby might work.

     My brother SeaBees my hat is off to all who served from the beach landing to present day.  Little did we mushrooms know what a pearl of the free world that Diego Garcia would become.  Most people have no conception of what a major military installation that small coral atoll has become.



1973 - 1974


I cant believe this sight is here. To cool. I spent a year on Diego Garcia, I arrived in my dress blues on Jan 20 1973 and departed Jan 20 1974. When I arrived I was an E-2 and when I departed the rock I was an E-3. A UTCN and plank owner of the NAVCOMSTA. I have nothing but great memories of the place, I've blocked out all the bad stuff I guess. I would love to find some of my old buddies from back then, and would be honored to serve the gov.  Manny Molina former UTCN 1973 and out of the Navy a OTA1 in 1991


















Oct. 1973 - july 1974


NATIONALITY = redneck; SERVICE = seabees; UNIT = mcb-4 a co.

RANK/RATE/JOB = was a cm3 then. got in 75 but returned in 81 as a ut. retired in 97 as a ut1

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = My Time There is Lost in an Alcoholic Haze, Help Me Remember!

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = There I Was, Passed Out on The Beach

MY WARSTORY = spent a many of nights at the em club, and passed out on the beach. Just barely making it to morning muster eveytime.





MY QUEST = to remember ......


SERVICE = nmcb-62, UNIT = alpha Co heavy shop

My Time There is Lost in an Alcoholic Haze, Help Me Remember!  This is a No-Shit Drinking Story

MY WARSTORY = what about the c-130's.....what a ride.....and the shit'ers burning them.....and the party' what a good time...the club...the drive in.....and bob hope and red fox to ...i still have the newsletter with the bob hope show pic's in itand my yearbook from 75 rota with nmcb-62....the golf course...oh i long to remember those i work in florida with many types of navy radar systerms for ships and sub's too also the nexrad weather radar i work on many of the 1st systems...we also do radar tracking systems for fire control systems...never thought i would be working on this stuff. good luck and nice page dude can do ...anytime anywhere anyhow



1973/73    AND 1977




RANK/RATE/JOB = 1972/73  EOCS   1977  EQCM   RETIRED JUNE 1977

MY INTEREST IN DG IS = Professional Adventurer Looking For The Ultimate Get Away





     I was there in 73 I think..MCB4. All we had was seahuts to live in,lots & lots of donkeys,chickens,FLIES UP THE ASS and Double Diamond Beer. Once every couple of weeks a shipment of beer would come in but if you didn't get right over to the club (quanset hut) and snap up some cases, you're SOL and stuck with the DD or Pabts Blue Ribbon.

     We had a radio station that used to play "BACK IN THE U.S.S.R.' (BEATLES) for the Russian trawler that was always off shore. The DJ also played that song--I don't know the name of it-- about running off the British in 1814 or something like that.  Problem was he played it so fuckin' much he pissed 'em all off and our Capt. almost had to shut down the station!

    We used to build fires sometimes on the beach by our huts on the lagoon side. I remember on night we were low on firewood and we went to find some. I made it as far as the mini golf course,if that's what you want to call some ragged out wooden structures in the dirt with slabs of concrete for the ball to roll on. Anyway that windmill sure got the fire going again.

     My squad was laying in the fire mains at the far end of the island by the new--at the time-- power plant or pump station, I can't remember for sure what it was. It was a good ways out there and all the roads were coral and lousy with donkeys. There were tankers up and down the roads spraying them down with water all the time, the big ones like earth movers, one day this clown pulled up to that building out where we were in on of them only he didn't stop in time (or he didn't WANT to), but he didn't hit the building,he hit the jeep parked in front of the building and crushed it like a beer can.  Our Senior Chief wasn't to jazzed about that . He wound up having to drive a weps for the rest of our deployment and I think the kid wound op bustin' tires for the rest of the time.

     Anyway... I've got a buddy in the Merchant Marines and he was there a few years ago and told me the place is nothing like I've described it to him. I'm glad! It is a very beautiful place. The two things I liked best about it was R&R in Bangkok, and leaving.





What is Your Quest?  TO GET BY

Were you ever on Diego Garcia?   DAMM RIGHT.  I was on Diego Garcia in 1973 with NMCB74.  What a trip that was.  I wish I was back there now.  Retired from fed gov after 25 years.





What is Your Quest?  To contact other fellow Brits out there

      I was the first British contingent out there for RN Party 1002 and we commissioned the island and I have the plank certificate to prove it.  It was lovely to see the link and my ugly face is the one on the pier on the  right at the top, the one underneath is my best mate, later my best man at my wedding Ben (Grahame) Boner (actually, this photo is on Dave's web page at





Were you ever on Diego Garcia?  March 73-February 74 "Plank Owner"

     First 8 months lived in hooch H6. Don't miss the "once a month" fresh fruit from Mauritius but do miss the island.   I have my "plank owner" certificate on my wall at home constantly reminding me of that island far away.

     I was an ET3 and worked at the com center.  I remember grabbing free hamburgers and a milkshake and then walking to the movie theatre.  I don't remember the projectionist's name but it was fun to see him riled up and cut someone down over the PA with his razor wit.   Liked to toss gravel on the movie projector booth's metal roof since the projectionist was a master of put downs. He'd get on the PA and cut anyone to shreds with just a few words.

    Several of us had gone shelling one night and we were returning to downtown on Diego Garcia bikes.  We happened upon a herd of donkeys and started to chase after them on our bikes.  We were able to run with them for a short while but they took a turn and we lost them.  I also remember the coconut crabs raising their big claws while we pedaled by.  On a moonlit coral dust road, these big crabs looked alien, as if they could grab my tire, lift me and my bike and toss me a few yards!

      A rat would get in our hooch (H6) some nights.  We could hear him scratching on the metal roof.  We rigged a trap for him one day.  We got a standard mouse trap with cheese, tied it to the long wooden roof brace (2X4) that ran the length of the hooch, and set it on top of this 2X4. We all went to work that morning, wondering if we'd catch him.  That evening, we came "home" to our hooch and found that the trap had worked.  Hanging from the rafters on a rope was this trap with a rat in it.  What a sight to come home to.

      I worked at the ATCU vans a couple times, mainly check out of some equipment because by then the vans weren't being used.  But they were maintained just to insure they would still function if everything else came crashing down (land lines to the transmitter were cut about once a month it seemed) and I remember thinking where the vans were located it was like a small paradise because they actually had green grass growing there and some egg laying chickens!  But the guys had to wear hard hats when mowing the lawn so they wouldn't get bopped with falling coconuts.

      I worked at the golf hooch some nights, handing out clubs and balls and selling beer and pop and snacks for the movie crowd. One night I was sitting there and a rat came falling out of a tree, flew right past my head and landed on the floor just behind me.  He scampered out before I could do anything.  I figure it was a miscalculated grab for a bag of chips!

     Comments:  Jim collects stamps and would like to buy or trade stamps from Diego Garcia and Mauritius.



1973-1974 and 1972-1973 (a two time winner!)


Sept. 72-April 73 July 73- April 74

Navy Seabee was on Diego Garica with MNCB-10 and NMCB-62 building the runway, also paved the road from A-CO yard to Nav Fac. We atarted building the bowling alley, lived in wooden huts up on the hill in the compound, by the muse generator. [editor's note: The Senior Chief is looking for Seabees who are interested in the Navy Seabee Veterans of America, check out their web site,]

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