Sunday, May 8, 2011

Post Vietnam -- SeventyOneLima

When you've been out of the military for a while, having to get back into the "groove" so to speak wasn't the easiest thing to do.
Especially, when you're working for a non-combat unit and it happens to be the people setting policy guidelines for everyone else stationed at the fort.
Needless to say, the tollerance level and the raised expectation...s went beyond my initial abilities to cope and conform.
My next job was a lot of fun.  I worked at the Post Muesum.  Learned quite a lot about Fort Huachuca including such bizaar facts like Geronimo was caught, placed in jail at Fort Huachuca and escaped, the home of the Buffalo Soldiers -- Negro troops of the 9th and 10th U.S. Cavalry -- who tested Camels as a means of transportation accross the desert, and was the supplier of water for the mining town of Tombstone.
But the museum wasn't enough action for me and based on my background, I asked for a transfer to the Fort Huachuca Emergency Operations Center (EOC). So, between January of 1973 and June of 1973, I was assigned to the EOC. I downgraded the classified documents from Top Secret to Secret, Secret to Classified and classified to non-classified.
Also, for the first time in the history of the EOC, we went active when a train with 12 cars filled with 500 pound bombs blew up i12 miles east of Bension Arizona.
Title: Southern Pacific Transportation Co., Freight Train 2nd BSM 22 Munitions Explosion, Benson, Arizona, May 24, 1973.
NTSB Report Number: RAR-75-02, adopted on 2/26/1975
NTIS Report Number: PB-241580/AS
The investigation of the Roseville train explosion was still in progress when 12 boxcars full of bombs exploded near Benson, AZ. Evidence found after the accident revealed that there had been a fire in one of the boxcars.
I took pictures of the cleanup and one picture of an EOD officer drinking milk while standing on a 500 pound bomb was published in the Huachuca Scout.
Six months later, my work on the classified documents was audited by a group responsible for all the classified documents on the post and recieved rave reviews. Just after that, the Army announced a program where GIs could change their MOS to ones they needed and naturally, my 67Y20 MOS was one of them.
My last 30 days at Fort Huachuca were done on the flightline.  I was now on orders to go to Fort Campbell, Ky. Major Craig Gies and I would cross paths once again. 

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