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At random: Probably the most expensive ballast ever carried by a ship was two tons of gold and eighteen tons of silver coins carried by the U.S. submarine TROUT while on a trip from Corregidor to Pearl Harbor early in World War II. TROUT had removed her moveable ballast to allow for a larger cargo of ammunition to be transported for the defenders on the embattled island. Lcdr. Fenno, TROUT's CO, planned on replacing the ballast with sand bags, but found none were available. The gold and silver from the Bank of the Philippines was substituted as ballast, which also solved the problem of removing the treasure to a safe place prior to invasion by the enemy.
Anyone Else Qualify?
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crystal
Posted 2010-12-20 4:24 PM (#43586)


Master and Commander

Posts: 2191

Location: Port Ludlow, WA (the Olympic Penninsula)
Subject: Anyone Else Qualify?





(Olongapo.jpg)



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Palm Bay Ken
Posted 2010-12-20 4:30 PM (#43587 - in reply to #43586)


Great Sage of the Sea

Posts: 539

Location: Palm Bay, Florida
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

Been there, done that, got the tee-shirt. Twice over the bridge was enough though. Once going and once coming back!
Don Winslow, USN
Posted 2010-12-20 6:44 PM (#43588 - in reply to #43586)
Mess cooking

Posts: 21

Location: Lac Labelle, MI
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

1961 I broke my ankle in a beer ball game on Grande Island and I was the spare part petty officer for the elect gang. I had to wear a plastic bay over the cast so when it rained,which was every few minutes while runing down parts. When we would go into town, the girls all felt sorry for me, because I told them I jumped out of the 2nd story when someone hollerd "shore patrol" We hit the bars, buying butterfly knifes and eating monkey meat on a stick. Those were the good old days



AGSS-274
BlackBeard
Posted 2010-12-20 8:29 PM (#43589 - in reply to #43586)


Great Sage of the Sea

Posts: 566

Location: Inyokern, Ca.
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

Probably, We spent a little over a month (December) there in 1980. Boats Christmas party in the Barrio at hotel Marmont. Olongapo got too busy after a CBG pulled in so most of us spent the last three weeks in the Barrio or Subic City.

BB

Edited by BlackBeard 2010-12-20 8:32 PM
rover177
Posted 2010-12-20 8:53 PM (#43592 - in reply to #43586)
Master and Commander

Posts: 1572

Location: Wollongong, NSW
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

Had visits to Subic in '73 and '75. In '73 the bridge across the river was very temporary and life was very cheap; not unusual to see headless bodies carried by the river flow. Young girls were diving for pesos in that sewer pit.

Second visit, involving a docking occurred during Vietnam's collapse and Grande island was being used as a processing centre. The new concrete bridge across the river was unbelievable. Only real problem when somebody attempted to steal the Electrical Officer's watch. Fortunately, that bar had a police officer on duty in the doorway. As the offender ran past, the officer took out his revolver and put one into the offender's head. Big "L" got his watch back - both of us decided to return to the base somewhat quickly.
We were there for about four weeks or so.

Life was still cheap.
Roy Ator
Posted 2010-12-20 9:07 PM (#43596 - in reply to #43586)


Great Sage of the Sea

Posts: 892

Location: Palo Pinto County, Texas
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

Somewhat recall making Subic a time or three in the fifties. DDR-743 then later on CVA-19. San Miguel? That green stuff that made you ill? Yep, that was the place! Those huge snakes that liked to share the barracks with you? No berthing A/C on board so we could shack up with the barracks monkeys in the local heat & humidity...
Oh, and the river aroma stuck with you as well! Ba-lutes? [ripe fertile eggs]...

Clear, this wasn't one of my most pleasant memories. Why did you have to stir it up?
crystal
Posted 2010-12-21 5:56 AM (#43600 - in reply to #43586)


Master and Commander

Posts: 2191

Location: Port Ludlow, WA (the Olympic Penninsula)
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

Well Roy (et al), having been in there a couple of times on the Scamp (in the Marcos martial law days) and flown in twice several days early off the Ranger (as 1st Class Mess Treasurer) to arrange parties, I got to know the Phillipines quite well.  I had even learned to speak a bit of Tagalog after trading time with a Philino buddy for chess lessons. (Tagalog is rather easy if you already know Spanish)...

Anyhow, I took leave several times and stayed at Gaines Beach way across Subic Bay from the base.  You hired a boat to take you across (up by the White Rock Resort), no reservations needed at the beach.  That place was "pristine".  Owned by an old Chief Boatswains mate that married and stayed in P.I..  He had built up small living huts right on the beach, had the typical palm thached look, even a bar near the water that he would only close after the last person quit for the night.  I could lean back against a palm tree sitting in the sand on a fine, white sand beach and watch the stars come out while sipping on a favorite libation.  Always a nice breeze across the water and none of that Olongapo "smell"...

I've even taken the Victory Line bus down to Manila on my own to go shopping at their big market area. I sponsored a child through the Catholic Church (which I'm not) and was there for her christening (no, she wasn't mine, as in biological, she was an orphan).  I guess it's all a matter of attitude and how you approach your time off.  I did the same kind of thing in Spain, where a bunch of "we electricians" off the Forrestal rewired an orphanage.  For some reason those times seem a lot better now than all of the bar crawling around the globe (which I also did a lot of)...



Edited by crystal 2010-12-21 5:59 AM
rjs2005
Posted 2010-12-21 6:51 AM (#43602 - in reply to #43586)


Old Salt

Posts: 338

Location: Oak Island, NC
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

I agree with John.  Although I never experienced the magic and joy that must be Subic Bay, Olongapo and the Barrio, one of my most memorable port visits was in, of all places, Toulon France.  I have never really cared for that port-the people just rub me the wrong way.  This visit however coincided with the annual pilgrimage to Lourdes.  The husbanding agent was looking for a few volunteers to assist disabled, injured and ill patients onto a train for the journey to Lourdes.  Not looking forward to another day spent munching smashed sandwiches and drinking beer with the rats in the Gut, I decided to go help.  Myself, the COB and a couple of other Chiefs went to the station and spent the better part of the day helping load wheelchair-bound and bedridden men, women and children onto the train.  I never felt more appreciation than I did that day.  We got a great meal and a little book (in French, of course) explaining the pilgrimage to Lourdes that I've kept all these years, but it was the look in those people's eyes and the gentle handclasp from them that stayed with me.  We didn't understand each other's language, but the sentiment was unmistakeable.
Mac McCoy
Posted 2010-12-21 9:23 AM (#43608 - in reply to #43586)
Senior Crew

Posts: 214

Location: Ladson SC
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

Is this the place? Seems that I was there a time or two maybe even three or four or maybe more. Hard to remember thru the haze of too many bottles of beer.



(subic.jpg)



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Mac McCoy
Posted 2010-12-21 9:26 AM (#43610 - in reply to #43586)
Senior Crew

Posts: 214

Location: Ladson SC
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

Or Maybe this was the Place??



(Subic 2.jpg)



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crystal
Posted 2010-12-21 11:10 AM (#43614 - in reply to #43586)


Master and Commander

Posts: 2191

Location: Port Ludlow, WA (the Olympic Penninsula)
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

Yep, that be the place!





(Olongapo.jpg)



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crystal
Posted 2010-12-21 11:23 AM (#43615 - in reply to #43586)


Master and Commander

Posts: 2191

Location: Port Ludlow, WA (the Olympic Penninsula)
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

This is a fairly current photo of the Gaines Beach Property.  Ernie Gaines passed away in 1985 and is buried here on the property that he loved.

Edited by crystal 2010-12-21 11:25 AM




(Gaines.jpg)



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crystal
Posted 2010-12-21 11:27 AM (#43616 - in reply to #43586)


Master and Commander

Posts: 2191

Location: Port Ludlow, WA (the Olympic Penninsula)
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

Here's one from Ernie's gravesite





(Gaines4.jpg)



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mike652
Posted 2010-12-21 12:01 PM (#43617 - in reply to #43586)
Great Sage of the Sea

Posts: 715

Location: Conway, NH
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

I visited Olongapo City Aug ’71, Jan ’73 (where I received my SRB check), Mar – Apr ’80, Jun ’80, Sept ’81 (my Chiefs initiation was in town), Dec – Jan ’81 – ’82 (Christmas party at Tom Tom and an awesome New Year’s party at Chief’s Club) and Jun ’85. What happens in Olongapo better stay in Olongapo.
fortyrod
Posted 2010-12-21 3:53 PM (#43629 - in reply to #43586)
Great Sage of the Sea

Posts: 742

Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

Thanks for the pictures and memories (1969) which I'll keep to myself. Subic was part of the reason I never wore gold.
Mac McCoy
Posted 2010-12-21 4:12 PM (#43633 - in reply to #43586)
Senior Crew

Posts: 214

Location: Ladson SC
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

Just one more photo. Anyone remember these "Ladies"



(Subic Ladies.jpg)



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fortyrod
Posted 2010-12-21 4:47 PM (#43635 - in reply to #43586)
Great Sage of the Sea

Posts: 742

Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

a somewhat related question, who can pick out the benny boy? I'm off to buy some little ducks
Dave Follo
Posted 2010-12-21 6:45 PM (#43642 - in reply to #43586)
Crew

Posts: 50

Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

One of my favorite liberty ports; '57, '59, '68, '69, '77, '79, '81, '83, '84, '85, '87, '89.

DBF
Flapper
Posted 2010-12-22 12:51 AM (#43649 - in reply to #43586)


Master and Commander

Posts: 1107

Location: Tucson AZ
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

My Kitty Hawk WestPac in '65 - '66 was 4 weeks on Yankee or Dixie stations off 'Nam and 3-4 days in Subic ... repeat as necessary. So more than a few trips over the notorious bridge.
But personally, I enjoyed the 2 pit stops in Yokosuka, and Hong Kong was OK.


Pig
Posted 2010-12-22 9:23 AM (#43663 - in reply to #43586)
Plankowner

Posts: 4517

Location: Gulfport, MS
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

Can you get a 'rocker' for the patch... "Missed the bridge - waded across" (I qualify for one)
Ric
Posted 2010-12-22 9:49 AM (#43664 - in reply to #43663)


Plankowner

Posts: 8723

Location: Upper lefthand corner of the map.
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

Missed it or just couldn't find it?
rover177
Posted 2010-12-22 3:43 PM (#43673 - in reply to #43586)
Master and Commander

Posts: 1572

Location: Wollongong, NSW
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

Pig should still be tested for every toxin ever thought about. That river was lethal.
crystal
Posted 2010-12-22 5:00 PM (#43682 - in reply to #43586)


Master and Commander

Posts: 2191

Location: Port Ludlow, WA (the Olympic Penninsula)
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

Circa 1972





(ShitRiverOlongapo1972.jpg)



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Donald L. Johnson
Posted 2010-12-23 11:00 PM (#43728 - in reply to #43586)


Great Sage of the Sea

Posts: 602

Location: Visalia, Ca.
Subject: RE: Anyone Else Qualify?

100 missions? Don't know - who counts?

I made 5 WestPacs, on Seadragon (75, 78-79), Buffalo (85, 87) and Plunger (88).
Surprised I remember as much as I do, but I do remember a lot. Especially that first trip in June of 75.
Might even still have some pictures buried in an old cigar box in the closet....
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