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The Misadventures of Me and My Family Tree

Following Navy tradition, a full dress inspection was scheduled, to greet the new Officer in Charge. I requested that I be excused from the inspection because I did t have any regulation shoes to wear. Some prankster had stolen my regulation shoes a few months earlier, and small stores did t have any my size to replace them. I had no choice but to either go barefooted or

wear shower shoes.

The supply department

at Midway woul


order replacement

shoes for


because of my temporary status on the Island. Because of my unusual circumstance, I that I be excused from the inspection. My request was denied. I stood inspection in uniform and shower shoes.

requested full dress

The real fun started when the next airplane came in for refueling. Our mission was to get them in and get them out. My crew met and serviced the airplane like the professionals that they were. The Chief was obviously impressed, but he made the mistake of asking one of my men if

he had a Navy dri

s license. After my man told him that he did t, The Chief came over to

me and chewed me out. He said that all drivers were required to have Navy drivers licenses and that no one without a valid Navy license would be allowed to drive any of our service vehicles. He even threatened me with a Court Martial if I failed to enforce this demand. I tried to explain the impossibility of his orders, but he would hear none of it.


A few hours later, a second transport landed anxious to refuel and be on its way.


than face another Court Martial, I decided to follow the Chief s orders to the letter.

Since none

of my crew had dri

s licenses, except for me, I ordered my crew to go to the airplane, and I

would bring them the equipment that they needed to service it. I had to make five trips to get all the necessary equipment to the airplane. Each trip entailed a hundred yard walk to the equipment parking area, followed by a hundred yard drive to the airplane. Then after the plane was serviced, I had to repeat the process, in reverse, to clear the equipment away from the aircraft. The Chief showed up just as I was about to move the last vehicle. The pilot was complaining about the delay to our Officer in Charge, and the Officer in Charge had passed the pilots scorn on to the Chief. The Chief let me know how unhappy he was with me and my crew s performance. I told the Chief that they had performed in an outstanding manner considering his ban on using

unlicensed drivers.

More words were said, most of them about my incompetence.

I finally told

him that in view of his impractical restrictionsÍž I had handled the task position could. I went on to tell him that if he thought that he could do to try. He sputtered a bit and accepted the challenge. He relived me of assigning me with a new one.

as well as anyone in my better, he was welcomed my job and didn t bother

The next day the Detachment Officer in Charge called for an all­hands meeting at the line shack. He gave the standard pep talk, saying what a privilege it was to be in command of a fine outfit such as we were. He went on with his rah­rah speech for about a half an hour and finished up by asking if anyone had any questions. Several sailors had questions about things long lost to my memory. After everyone else had their fill of questions and answers, I raised my hand and unloaded on him. I told him that my wife and daughter were arriving at Hickam AFB, Hawaii in a few short days, and she expected me to meet her there. I went on to tell him that I had completed my Midway obligation six weeks before his arrival, but I couldn t go back to Hawaii because I did t have a relief. I then told him that because of a silly misunderstanding between me and the Chief, that I didn t even have a job. I concluded by asking him why I needed a relief when I did t even have a job. The Officer in Charge responded by asking me to meet him outside after the meeting for a one on one talk. After a brief chat, he made a call to squadron headquarters and made arrangements for me to be on the next flight for Hawaii.


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