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WAR STORIES FROM PARADISE
You have traveled back to 1979!
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!


Troglodytes
1971
1972
1973
1974
1975
1976
1977
1978
1979
1980
1981
1982
1983
1984
1985
1986
1987
1988
1989
1990
1991
1992
1993
1994
1995
1996
1997
1998
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013
2014
2015
2016
2017
2018
Wannabes


1979

Steve Folkes = folkess@aol.com

Citizenship = USA; Service = USAF;

Outfit = Aircraft Maintenance

My_Quest = Iranian Hostage Crisis

My_Warstory = I was one of 34 Air Force personnel sent to Diego Garcia to convince the Iranians to release the American Hostages. We lived in the plywood/screen huts and ate by the campfire every night. We set up a stop gap system that helped supply beer and sodas for everyone until the supply ships came in. My hat is off to all of my Navy Brothers for taking us in and helping our mission. Great Friends - Great Memories.

 

 

1979 - 1980

Name = Melvin Herzing

submit_by = mherz238@aol.com

Citizenship = USA

Service = USN

Outfit = NMCB Five Det Diego

My_Quest = Touch Base

VT_of_a_Swallow = Brown or English?

My_Warstory = How bout the queens chickens, coconut crabs, donkey burgers, other side of the island.

 


1979

Hello Ted,

Recently discovered your site and enjoy it very much. Donít know if you are still maintaining it, but if so this tidbit may be of interest, given the touch of humor your site contains.

     My name is James Bond and I was on Diego Garcia from March through July 1979.  (I left the island five days after you arrived.) At the time I was a civilian DOD employee working for Defense Mapping Agency. This agency was a descendant of US Coast and Geodetic Survey which you mention in a 1968-1970 item on your site. Indeed, Kirby Crawford was my supervisor in 1979.

      After the initial survey of 1968-1970 was done, Diego Garcia became a satellite tracking station for a special annual mission that lasted anywhere from four to six months. I was part of the two man tracking team in 1979.

      Thatís how I found my way to Diego. However, the incident I relate concerns the USS Constellation. From a letter I wrote home in late April, there is the following excerpt:  "the aircraft carrier Constellation almost ran aground on an uncharted shoal east of the island several miles. It would be very humiliating to have a ship sink in the middle of the ocean because it hit a rock."

      Very quickly a survey ship was dispatched to the island, together with a survey team from NAVOCEANO. The team arrived two weeks after the shoal was reported. After two weeks of their work, I wrote the following: "The NAVOCEANO people here surveying the area where the Constellation reported a shoal have found nothing. Somethingís wrong somewhere."

      Nevertheless, the Navy wanted to be perfectly sure nothing was hiding in the waters off the east side of the island, so they kept the NAVOCEANO crew busy Ė which certainly wore on the nerves of their surveyors who had been prepared for a short mission. Finally on July 9th, "The final NAVOCEANO people left today. Their three week mission lasted nine." No shoal was ever found. It was eventually concluded that someone on the Constellation made a very expensive error.

      Please rework the story as you see fit. I would prefer not to be mentioned.

      I was actually lucky enough to get a photo of the wild horses while there. It isnít a great picture, but it shows the three horses which were still alive at the time. It is attached and I don't mind being credited for it.

 Best wishes,

 Bond, James Bond

 

 

79/80

Dennis McMaines = mcmainesd@charter.net

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN ; Outfit = USS Dixie AD 14

My_Warstory = My war story, We arrived with no idea of what lay ahead. No pier to tie up to, no beach landing spot for our liberty boats. So first thing was to build a dock to pull up to in the boats we took to shore once every 6 days for 5 hrs of liberty. It was called the Dixie pier. We were the first destroyer tender to be stationed at the rock. Performed a lot of first's durning our 5 months anchored in the bay. Loved the Mars raido connection to the states, when it worked. Cell phones were a bit in the future then. Donkey burgers, baseball, beach combing, crabs!!, swimming, best tee-shirt, "Every week is chicken choking week in Diego Garcia". The Sea bees were a fantastic group of guys. We worked together on alot of projects on the beach. Did lots of welding projects for them. They always had the coldest beer at the end of the day. If there was such a thing as a cold beer. Got to go on a refueling missiom on a KC-135 somewhere over afganistan. Filled up 2 B-52 bombers. Watched from the belly viewing place on the aircraft. Will never forget looking into the eyes of the bomber pilot. Your that close when hooked up. Enjoyed the fishing off the half sunken barge in the harbor. Coconuts,yumm. My only regret about the whole visit was, I was to young to really of appreciated the beauty, and experiance of being on such a isolated island in an area of the world that I would no doubt never be in again in my life time.

 

 

1974-1975, 1979-1980, & 1981.

Project Manager on the 1st P.O.L. facility in 74-75, Engineering Chief for PW 79-80 and Minor projects for MCB-62 in 81

Robert Reagan reaganre@hotmail.com

Citizenship = USA; Service = US Navy Seabees; Outfit = MCB10, NavSta Diego Garcia (PW), and MCB62

My_Quest = Quest?  To live as long as I can

VT_of_a_Swallow = as fast as you can drink a beer!

My_Warstory = First let me say that I have two years and one month of my life on that Island. I am one of the few people who has driven all 31 miles from tip to tip.  In 1979-1980 I put 27,000+/- miles on a Dodge Ram pickup in a year and most of my job during that consisted of finding places for people to sleep. 

     Myself and a Brit Chief that I cannot remember his name sort of established the Diego Garcia Yacht Club as a way for his and my troops to have something to do besides drink, read books, fish or watch porno movies from the library.  Lot of hard work and a lot stories that I don't have enough time to write my stories now but would like to post this and write more later if that's possible.  Some are strange and some are sad but I saw PT. Marianne before the dredge fill, runway extension and buildings wiped it out  I was there in the formative years 74-75 as it really was still getting started and then when I went down in 1979 it was a sleepy little backwater with total island population of approx. 1300 with 650 of that the resident Seabee Battalion for about three months until the Iranians took the hostages and life as we knew it changed overnight.  Within two weeks the PCS personnel had grown to almost 5000 people and had another 5000 or so in transient to and from ships.  It was a nightmare.  My last 3 months in 1981 with MCB 62 was interrupted by an old knee injury that got reinjured and I got medevacked to Subic and the on to FT Gordon, GA for an operation and then went to Fleet Reserve in November, 1982.  I had never seen your site until I stumbled on it the other day and was very pleasantly surprised as it brought back memories.  When I left in 1975 the P.O.L. facility that I was building was on a 1/2 mile long, 100 foot wide causeway out into the lagoon and Pt. Marianne was still a pristine with the cemetery, church and a few cottages and the largest mango tree on the island.  When I got back in 1979 it was all under the dredge fill from the anchorage expansion project. The causeway was pretty much gone and the new fuel pier at the end of it was under construction.  It was a total shock.

 

 

1979

 

Bill Halley = bilhalley@hotmail.com

 

Hi,

I just found your site & it brings back many good memories.

I was one of the 26 Brits on the island in 1979 & these are a few pics of our (unsuccessful) attempt to catch Hector.

Regards

Bill Halley

 











1979 - 1980

Victor A. Cayabyab = victor.cayabyab@sbcglobal.net

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN; Outfit = 30th NCR Det.

My_Quest = Fishing , Crabing, drying fish and going to the plantation

My_Warstory = Live in the trailer, work with NCMB 4 at the parts warehouse supplying parts for the heavy equipments, trucks and jeeps. At night work as bartender at the officer's club. Weekends, I spent my time at the PWC Subic Det. BBQ's, preserving coconut crabs and drying fish called daeng.. I have a plaque with map of diego garcia painted on it and real preserved coconut crab. It was a 12 months tour. Took my first class advancement exam and I was frock to E-6 at my next command USS San Jose (AFS-7) homeported then at NAS Alameda, Ca. My chief was SKCS Ferrer then.

 

 

"79-80"

Russ Nichols = rnick1957@gmail.com

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN SEABEE; Outfit = NMCB 40

My_Quest = To find old freinds

My_Warstory = I have already shared one of my stories in here,, been awhile ago,, but I am hoping there's old friends that will run across here, and hopefully get my "updated" Email, and get in touch! There's a bunch of people on Facebook that a bunch of groups are getting together. Come find us! Finding old friends all the time!

Russ Nichols

 

 

1979-1980

JOHN DAEHLIN = FYHMF@YAHOO.COM

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN; Outfit = RADIOMAN. "R" SITE//"T" SITE//ASW COMMUNICATIONS AT AIR FIELD

My_Quest = WIN THE LOTTO; VT_of_a_Swallow = WHO THE FK CARES

My_Warstory = FIRST BERTHING THE MODULE LUX. DONKEY BURGERS, CHEESY USO SHOWS. (NOT DEMEANING THEIR JOB, GLAD OF IT) WAS ONE OF THE FIRST TO GET HOUSING IN THE NEW CREW QUARTERS (2 STORY) WAS THERE WHEN THEY BUILT THE FIRST WOMAN'S BARRACKS, NO SLIDING SOFT BALL..HAD A GREAT TIME..GOOD FRIENDS....POTG FROM AFRICA. P.I. HASH...WOULD BUY 50 60 CASES OF BEER AT A TIME..SUPPLY SHIP DIDNT COME ON TIME MOST OF THE TIME. MANY TIMES DRINKING GIN AND GRAPE POP...THE ONLY BOOZE AND POP..TILL RE STOCKED...WAPATOOEY//GARBAGE CAN PARTIES. YOU COULD NOT BEAT THE WHITE SAND BEACHES...DIVING FOR LANGASTINO LOBSTERS BOILING THEM UP IN A NEW MOP BUCKET ON THE BEACH....I SEE A LOT OF PEOPLE BITCH AND MOAN ABOUT THE THE OLE DOGE/ROCK....I LOVED IT....HAD A BLAST....AND GOT WHAT EVER DUTY STATION I WANTED WHEN I LEFT.....

 

 

79 - 80, 81?

Michael Jones , aka Michael P. = diegodrifter@hotmail.com

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN; Outfit = NMCB5, main body , det diego

My_Quest = Memory lane

VT_of_a_Swallow = the beer bong, 1 sec!

My_Warstory = War story, I am 52 years old now, why does Diego Garcia keep coming into my thoughts?

I spent two full deployments there, arrived when I was 18, left when I was 20. It was cool it was crazy.

I read others notes here I understand.

The fleet boys are full of shit though. Us Seabees do not tell shit.

Ok besides the hammerhead, the reef that will tear you apart, the guys eaten or disappeared.

My second time there, Yes the fleet moved in, a young [expletive deleted] was wanting my cock at the edge of camp, I have only been there 2 weeks, still thoughts of a woman in CA.

I declined, Yes how many guys get pussy on Diego? I should have ,just for the sake of it!

Most people now do not understand what we went through. That one crazy steel worker told me he went swimming on the ocean side, got all tore up on the coral, almost drowned.

Shit I swam so much there, enjoying all the fish, the manta rays, When we have had the best, its hard to enjoy lessor!! I been to the Black Sea 2 weeks ago, my Russian lady was all excited...me?

We are Seabees, During wartime we know, on Diego we become, The marines I respect, the sailors are full of shit! Lets not forget the Brits, Jeb I worked with in the galley my first deployment, them guys have no choice. I respect them too!!! They are very Honorable!

30 years ago we were there living on the beach, what a wonder and joy, even in my 18-20 year old mind I did not totally understand, the lifers knew, I could not understand their calmness.

Diego Garcia I respect, I feel so honored to have been there before all hell broke loose in the world.

 

 

1979-1980

Mike Lines = melines133@gmail.com

Citizenship = USA; Service = USN; Outfit = NMCB 133 Bravo Co

My_Warstory = What do I remember about Diego. Hot.  Good fishing.  Bad Christmas.  Running so much that I lost so much weight that I looked like a walking dead man must to keep my sanity.  Took a month to correspond with family members back home.  No telephones.  Worst sunburn I'd ever had. Doing ship off load on a mike boat.  Snorkeling, seen some sharks, gave that up-bad habit.  Runny my first marathon and almost dying.  Some of the best sunsets I ever seen in my life.  Getting up in the morning to do my laundry and a chicken shit on me-the clean laundry on the way back.  Crammed in like sardines in our little trailers. 

 

 

1979-1980

Name = Charles Strickland

submit_by = cwstrickland@bellsouth.net

Citizenship = USA

Service = USN

Outfit = NMCB 133 A.CO.

My_Warstory = Worked Rock Crusher and Concrete Batch plant Mechanic

 

 

1979-80

Name = Bill Serra = info@caps1971.com

Citizenship = USA

Service = USN

Outfit = TAD/Supply Support/USS Halsey

My_Quest = T-Shirt

My_Warstory = I had an official BIOT DG "Where the Elite Meet" t-shirt & I lost it many years ago.

I want another one.

How can I get one?

I unloaded C-130's for the task forces in the Straits of Hormuz during the Iranian hostage crises, I played a lot of basketball, got a real good tan & went back to my ship after 30 days.  Nice place but woulda been better if there were girls...of which there were none.

 

 

From: Ted Morris [mailto:easy501@zianet.com]

Sent: Wednesday, August 04, 2010 4:02 PM

To: info@caps1971.com

Subject: RE: Diego Garcia Warstory

Hey Bill,  Sorry, but I don't know where you can get a t-shirt from DG itself.  The Ships Store and the T-Shirt Shop (yep, they've got one now) don't have mail order catalogs.  You can try writing to the Golf Course or the Yacht Club (there's addresses on the pages for them on the website).  There are also some of us who have set up e-stores and that sort of thing and you can see all of the ones I know of at http://www.zianet.com/tedmorris/dg/forsale.html.  Tom Lawson was there when you were, and his stuff might be what you're looking for.  However, none of them come directly from the island.  Sorry about that, Ted.

Hey Ted,

Pretty damn impressive site & thanks for getting back to me.

Is it true that they actually have women there?

That could be dangerous.

It looks like they've really built the place up in the last 30 years. I guess I didn't realize it at the time but apparently I was there during a very busy time (hell, what'd I know) but I do remember working on the tarmac and watching big bombers taking off with regularity.

Heck, we thought we were going to war.

I remember going through a bottle of Coppertone every day, being told to not swim in the bay (sharks), the ocean (again sharks) and that a couple of new guys decided to walk out to the "toes" during low tide and never made it back.

All in all the memories aren't bad, then again I was only there for a month but I did work hard while there.

When I got back to my ship in Subic all my shipmates thought I'd just laid on the beach.

Recollections?

Big freakin' crabs, good ice cream, great sunsets, beautiful beaches, the diverse colors/shades of the ocean, good guys but some pretty serious drinkers and some who were obviously hiding from people.

And there was a room between the two wings of our barracks where they showed porn movies 24/7.

I didn't know it existed until a couple of days after getting to DG. I'd popped my head in when I was brushing my teeth early one morning, I heard a bunch of guys laughing, looked into the room & saw about 10 guys sitting there, looked at the guy on the TV who I thought was Steve Martin. I commented "hey, he's great" & those guys looked at me like I was an idiot.

When I got back I looked in again and now there's more guys watching and that ain't Steve Martin on TV.

I thought "is that a good idea, watching porn where there's no women?"

I made it a point to stay outta that room, work, eat, sleep & play basketball until I went back to the Halsey.

And the pilots.

They were nuts.

They'd come back from some mission, hit the liquor store for a case of whatever & bust into the barracks ready to drink, any time of the day or night.

I plan to visit your site from time to time, great job.

And thanks for the links.

Bill Serra

Ramona, CA

  

 

Hi,

My Name is Kenny Greco and I served on DG in both '79-80 and '81, some of the best memories of my life. I'm looking for a good friend of mine named Kenny Horn who served '79-80. I would like to get back in touch with him if possible. Please email Pinscher319@gmail.com if anyone has a clue about the other Kenny.

 

 

JUNE 1978-MARCH1979 ,SEPT1979-JUNE1980,1993-1994
Name = David G. Perle  = PERLEHOME@SBCGLOBAL.NET
Citizenship = USA
Service = USN
Outfit = NMCB 4   AND NMCB 3
My_Warstory = I have many stories to share about life on the Rock, they cover the 3 deployments as a Navy Seabee in 1978-1979 then back again
1979 -1980 and finally 1993-1994. I will get pictures together and share them.   Talk to you soon.    
 
 
1979-1980
Name = paul thomas
submit_by = looknfor1@yahoo.com
Citizenship = USA
Service = USN
Outfit = i think 5 sent to 31 ncr detach
My_Quest = talk to some guys from the past
VT_of_a_Swallow = 
My_Warstory = wow i think i remember some names. gonna try to email all 3 that i know or i am sure i know. 
that would be wild man pavey, mr mulloy and ted gourd. do any of u remember me? hope we get to talk soon. 
 
 
1979-1980
Name = kevin koralewski
submit_by = kevinkoralewski@yahoo.com
Citizenship = USA
Service = USN 
Outfit = uss dixie ad-14
My_Quest = jog some memories
VT_of_a_Swallow = african or european?
My_Warstory = Does anyone remember our captain suspending all activities because somebody stole his sea shells?  
Another suspension of activities was someone stole Tiger beer while loading up.  
As an ET we actually ordered grain alcohol from the navy stock system to "clean the circuit boards". 
It came in a gallon gas can painted olive drab. Mixed it with Tab soda from the vending machines. 
Why do a lot of these memories include alcohol? Maybe 'cause thats all we had. 
Mauritius??  Karachi?? Somalia?? Sydney- YES! - Dial a sailor.
 
 
 Dec. 29, 1979-roughly june12, 1980
Name = Phil Wilborn
submit_by = philwilborn@yahoo.com
Citizenship = USA
Service = USN
Outfit = VS-28 Diego shore Det.  off the U.S.S. Independance.
My_Warstory =    Wilborn's Diego chronicles Part-1  Had fuck books in sea bag on helo ride to the rock. Brits confiscated them. 
Went downtown after checking in to tent city bought newer and better fuck books. My first clue to my next 6 month's oddysey. 
" Get a suntan mate "---- took 6 weeks no shit to peel off  my hide that was as close to being Afro- American as a white Ga. boy will ever get.
That was working the flight line on S-3A's and Miss Piggy. Had to do a windscreen change on the Pig with NO Pubs or T.O's. 
No one had a clue the torque or pattern on the bolts install. Plane tryed to launch to the boat-- moved 6 inches and the 
windscreen spider webbed so fuckin pretty. I laughed all day. More later, it only gets better from here ship mates.
 
 
1979 
79=80
Name = John Barto barto.j@sbcglobal.net
Citizenship = USA
Service = USN
Outfit = nmcb-40
My_Warstory = Where the fuck is everybody...been thirty years since the Rock...Run a truck fleet in Sacramento...
 
 
1979 on board USS JASON
Jennifer S Kalaitsides <Jskbsp@yahoo.com>
Greek/Italian
Service = USN
Outfit = USS JASON-AR-8  Supply dept
My_Quest = Reunite and share Historical moments in time and find friends
My_Warstory = Still to this day,the best time of my life!  Hooked up with a chef, who would only cook for the AF Pilots and 
was treated with the utmost respect for the entire time, there. Got some awesome recipes too! My time there incredible! 
The Jason Crew took great care of us females also. I have never learned more life lessons in the three months we were there,
than in my entire life! We were one of the first ships, to be in a war zone on red alert! I never felt alone, the boys always 
made me feel safe and secure on our ship or in port, and I never felt like an experiment or mistake. I was and am VERY 
PROUD to have served during a time I believe that has brought us to our current issues with the same People. It was just 
the beginning then. I'm lucky to have come away from there in one piece.  I am PROUD TO BE A LADY OF THE JOLLY JASON! 
Thanks Guys!
 
 
1979
bdstrangle@roadrunner.co.  March  31 while operating a bulldozer on the runway ext I was struck by a falling tree my head still hirts 
I worked at nsf Diego Garcia

1979-1980, as best I can remember.

NAME = Steve Yager

MY QUEST = Be the best darn mechanic I can be.

VT of a SWALLOW = Depends if the beer is warm or cold.

E-MAIL = eandsyager@msn.com

NATIONALITY = American

SERVICE = USN SeaBees

UNIT = NMCB 40, Construction Mechanic

RANK/RATE/JOB = CM5, but I didn't stay in.  I wanted to come home and marry my Eighth Grade Sweetheart!

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

SUBJECT OF MY STORY: = I'd Like to Share Precious Memories of Drinking/Fishing/Snorkeling/Sailing on Diego Garcia MY WARSTORY = My all time favorite memory of the precious time I spent on dear old Diego Garcia was drinking, smoking, and keeping one step ahead of the barracks inspections!  Anyone remember those?  Oh, yeah.  Where can we hide our stash THIS time????!!!!

     I remember one party in particular.  We had drawn "party rations" from the Chow Hall.  Everything was gone, except for the GALLON CAN OF JALEPENO PEPPERS!!!!  After consuming many alcoholic beverages - what the heck else WAS there to do on Diego - we had a jalapeno pepper eating contest!  The first memory came that night in the latrine during "aim and shoot" practice, and the second was the next day during the morning "sit down" on the porcelain throne!!!!

     I's like to say "Hello" to John Barto and Mike Bowles, and everyone else from that deployment that I can't remember!  Remind me of your names,

guys!  Contact me at my above e-mail address.  NMCB 40:  We Build, We Fight . . . . WE PARTY!!!!

 

1979

NAME:  big bob dabov

MY QUEST:  to stay clean enjoy retirement

VT of a SWALLOW:  very deep

E-MAIL:  robertdabov@bellsouth.net

NATIONALITY:  american

SERVICE:  NMCB5

UNIT:  POL FIRE PROTECTION

RANK/RATE/JOB:  UTCN

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

MY WARSTORY:  WHERE AR MY OLD FREINDS DENISE ALBO RAY RANGUSA JOHN TAYLOR JOHN WINKLER RAY LAWSON STUART BURHEN

JAMIE PEREZ RON ENGLEBERG THESE ARE GUYS I HAVENT HEARD FROM IN YEARS WHERE ARE YOU AT.

 

79-80

NAME = Greg Riley

MY QUEST = where the hell did Mcguiness go?

VT of a SWALLOW = good question

E-MAIL = rileyadks@yahoo.com

NATIONALITY = irish american

SERVICE = nmcb-40

UNIT = EO

RANK/RATE/JOB = E-4  discharged 1981

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 = holy shit, been a long time, my hut was right behind the 40 club, quite the partying in there,I remember partying all night, cooking chickens at like 3 am or maybe joe hartwig bringing in some fresh sting ray or eal we wood cook up and yeah when we couldn't find anybody else to fight with we would fight each other, I remember the hosher-blake hut fights, we'd be sitting somewhere partying and all the sudden hear crashing, hollering, we'd all look at eachother and just say ah its just Dsn and Terry going at it again, it was like their third time together in DG so anything set them off. Anyone know where pete mcguinness ended up? Tried to track him down on here but no luck. Some of the people I remember hanging out with were jay oldenburg, pete mcguinness, crazy mike excellor, tom sawyer, I saw rick baptistas write up here and jerry fillion, definately some wild times and crazy mfs, I remember the night we stole the jar heads flags, partying in the club and knocking down the fleettweets beer can pyrmids, all good times.

 

1979-1980

Stephen McWilliams <smcwill516@yahoo.com>