Lately, our boys have been into Dude Perfect. The DP gang was lucky enough to spend 3 days on the USS Nimitz. Good stuff. Launching aircraft as SHOOTER, flying an R/C airplane off the deck, fishing off the bow, steering the boat just to name a few!
(And good timing with the upcoming DCS Supercarrier module.)
Don’t forget showing up to everything 15 minutes prior to 15 minutes prior to 15 minutes prior to 15 minutes prior to 15 minutes prior to 15 minutes prior to 15 minutes prior to 15 minutes prior to when the CO actually wanted people there. Every level of the chain adds 15 minutes until it gets to the terminal Lance Corporal.
CO wants a company 12 mile hump to commence 0630. Marines are at the armory trying to check out weapons at 0330. Armorers don’t even show up to work until 530.
When I was the Director of Intel at JAC Molesworth I stopped some of that BS. I did something really crazy. I trusted my people.
Morning brief to the J2 (1-Star) at 0630? Start time for everybody involved, myself included, 0530. If you cannot get something like that done in 1 hour, you really need to find another line of work…at least one did.
Worked well until my relief took over and pushed it back to 0300. (sigh)
During ODS, one of my coworkers was out in the middle of the desert in friendly territory and the guys assigned to guard duty were not allowed to chamber a round unless explicitly ordered to do so. At the change of watch, they had to remove the one loaded magazine from the weapon, then take out each round one by one and count them in front of an officer. So, yes, things can get that stupid.
Beginning the 6-hour transit into Norfolk at 0700, so you have to set the sea and anchor detail throughout the ship at 0430, because Seaman Recruit Schmuckitelli was five minutes late getting to his hangar bay muster station for an UNREP six months prior… Never mind that BMSN(AW/SW) Schmuckitelli is now the Messenger of the Watch for Sea and Anchor and is about to get CAP’d to BM3.
I actually wrote a whole thing about this once upon a time at That Other Place, but can’t access it now…
One of my funniest moments in Army advanced training was for nighttime observation techniques. About 600 soldiers got trucked to a large open area just before dusk. We all stood in company formations waiting to take seats in the bleachers. Once we started to move, somebody began humming the Oh We Oh tune that the Wizard of Oz soldiers sung as they moved into the old witch’s castle. Quickly enough, all of us in line picked up on it and kept it going until everyone was seated.
Unfortunately that story is boring. I think I said something like, “This really isn’t your strong point. Why don’t we switch you over to a different shop.” and we did.
At the change of watch, they had to remove the one loaded magazine from the weapon, then take out each round one by one and count them in front of an officer.
Now that I have a Sea Story for. Let me introduce you to “William of Guam”.
The Tale of William of Guam
So when I was on USS Guam, there was another LT, a Surface Warfare Officer, named Bill. Due to some nuances with his commission, he was only going to spend 6 years on active duty. So rather than transfer him, he had been assigned to USS Guam for most of that time. Normally you are assigned to ship for 2 years. He had been onboard for about 5 years when I got there. Hence, “William of Guam.”
One of his previous assignments on the Guam, had been as the Gunnery Division Officer, in charge of all the small arms and the two CIWS mounts. As most of you know, the CIWS is a 20mm Gatling gun that fires at a very high rate. It is so fast that you never know how many rounds it will expend. So, we would do a practice fire and the the gun would go Burrrrrrrr! After that they would try to figure out how many rounds they had expended…and for some reason, never got it right.
Evidently they had a big inspection coming up and when they redid their math, they came up with 5 rounds too many. No problem. William of Guam just snapped 5 rounds off one of the 20 mm belts and threw them into his stateroom locker for safe keeping until after the inspection was over…and promptly forgot about them. (Hold that thought)
Time goes by…
William of Guam had a little old landlady. The little old landlady had a little old pistol. The little old pistol was broken. William of Guam offered to have some of his Gunnner’s Mates (GM rate) takes look at it and try to fix it. He brought the pistol aboard the ship (in the Navy, bringing an unauthorized weapon onboard a ship is considered “a big No No”).
The GMs couldn’t fix the pistol. At the end of the day, William of Guam, put the pistol in his gym bag and headed off the ship. He got as far as the quarterdeck when he remembered something, so he dropped the gym bag there and headed back to his stateroom. A sharp Petty Officer, standing Messenger of the Watch on the quarterdeck, noticed the unattended bag, took a look inside, and found the pistol.
This prompted an evolution that we like to call “Security Alert”…it is loads of fun!
The ship’s self defense force (a bunch of sailors who have proven they can at least hit the broadside of a bar with a shotgun) gets all geared up like a SWAT team and starts running around yelling and securing critical places while the rest of us get to “Stand Fast!” (essentially freeze in place until they are done and the threat is eliminated…which can take a while). Just loads and loads of fun!
When it was all sorted out, the pistol was determined to have belonged to William of Guam. They needed to conduct an investigation, just to keep all the paperwork in order. Part of the investigation was a thorough inspection of William of Guam’s state room…which involved a thorough inspection of William of Guam’s locker…which resulted in the “discovery” of the 5 rounds 20mm CIWS ammo…which were now completely unaccounted for since the “big inspection” showed all the 20mm ammo accounted for… suffice to say, a soup sandwich.
Thus the lamentable events in the short and somewhat unfortunate career of William of Guam.
Within a year of crew move-aboard, Reactor was banned from running security drills in the plant against the ship’s security force. They were getting beat too badly, and complained that we weren’t playing fair. Needless to say, none of us at all had a very high opinion of Security Department.
But the shipwide training afterwards must’ve been a blast, right?