Right out of boot camp

Mabank, TX

I received orders after I got out of the Philadelphia Naval Hospital (Dec '58) after getting treatment for possible measles infection (our recruit chief petty officer contracted measles while in boot camp and never went to the medical department ... I don't know if any other 'boots' contracted as I did). After my release I got orders to Norman, Okla., for Aviation Prep School. I got there the week everyone there went home for Christmas. I joined the base band after I found out I might have to stand 'Post Watch' (... walking the base perimeter IN THE SNOW). I had a racket ... only had to stand 'desk watch' until I had to play Taps for a military funeral for a sailor who just died (... no info was available). All I can say is ... the scenario was just like a Christmas story for me. The snow was coming down steady in big flakes; the clouds were peeking through the snow; it was cold and there were only four pallbearers (other sailors), a minister and myself. When playing Taps, the sound seemed to just float and hang in the air and echoed over the cemetery. It just took me in awe just thinking about how this was unfolding. When all came back to base and school started I finished, graduated and got orders to NAS Corpus Christi, Texas, then received orders to USS Intrepid.
Seriously, life was good for me in the Navy. Really NO complaints.

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