I grew up in Santa Maria CA graduating from Santa Maria High School in 1968. On February 24 1969 I enlisted in the US Coast Guard in San Francisco CA and entered Boot Camp at Government Island Alameda CA graduating as a member of company Charlie 68. My next duty station was at Sand Island Honolulu HI where I spent 6 months.
In late September 0f 1969 I received orders to report to HQ SEASEC Bangkok Thailand. After a weekend in Bangkok, I reported to HQ for duty and received additional orders to report to Con Son LORAN station in Viet Nam. I immediately boarded a plane to Tan Son Nhut Airbase in Saigon South Viet Nam. As we were landing the Airbase was under attack from hostile forces from rockets and mortars.
Within a day or two I boarded a plane to my new duty station at Con Son.
I was trained after my arrival to be a radio and teletype operator as well as a LORAN operator which were my primary duties during my year of duty there.
When I was stationed there in early 1970 a joint congressional investigative commitee arrived to tour the POW camp which we shared the island with which was administered by the South Vietnamese Army. The commitee stumbled upon an area of the POW camp which they were not supposed to see where captive Viet Cong were being kept in "tiger cages" which were only about 3' high and were being seriously maltreated. The area was photographed by photographers who accompanied the committee. After the committee returned to the mainland the discovery of the "tiger cages" became international news and graced the covers of Newsweek, Time and other news sources.
After my tour of duty at Con Son ended, I was given my choice of duty stations in CONUS, and I selected the Port Security station of Port Chicago which was part of the NAVWEPSTA Concord CA. I was entered into an Ammunition Loading school which I then used to serve as a safety supervisor/inspector in the process of loading refurished Liberty ships to transport munitions to Viet Nam. A movie was made of this operation in WWII when an accidental explosion occurred which totally destroyed 2 ships and dockyards and wiped out the town of Port Chicago which was never rebuilt. Many casualties and much property damage occurred. The docks were rebuilt and the station served the Viet Nam war effort in the same fashon as it did for the Pacific theater campaign in WWII.
I was then reassigned to become part of a precomissioning detail to transition a then US Army training station to a US Coast Guard training center where I was assigned to become a member of the shore patrol security detail.
In 1972 I was given orders to report to the USCGC Rush which was a 378' high endurance cutter. We immediately debarked for Alaska for a fisheries patrol which involved policing our territorial limit against foreign fishing fleets.
In early 1973 I left the service and enrolled in college where I pursued my first Associate degree.
After graduation I went to work for a few years in the local oil fields. I then worked for 4 years as a warehouseman for CBS Records, where 33 1/3 vinyl discs were made for sale.
In 1981 I took a position with the aerospace firm Martin Marrietta at Vandenberg AFB where I was eventually promoted to warehouse supervisor.
in 1989 I took a position as assistant launch site supervisor for the Titan Program at SLC-4 (Space Launch Complex 4) where Space X now does launches.
In 1991 after the sucessful inaugural TIV-A for Vandenberg I was laid off as it was thought future launches would need fewer personnel.
I was then recruited by the Halliburton division Brown & Root Saudi Ltd. to join their effort in Saudi Arabia removing Desert Storm munitions from the country to return them to the US which was a huge effort.
Upon my return to the US I took a position with Lockheed Martin with the DMSP (Defense Meteorological Satellite Program). i assisted them with their launch program.
in 1997 I was offered a return to me previous position with the Titan program as a Launch Site Supervisor where I served assisting many launches of Titan II & IV vehicles and payloads.
We launched our last Titan in 2005 and I served as supervisor for the closeout effort until 2006 when I transitioned to a new position as the Standard Tool Supervisor at the Sunnyvale CA Campus where I provided tool purchasing storing tracking certifications calibrations and cradle to grave histories for over 10,000 aerospace tools used at Bay area campuses formany different programs and efforts.
In 2014 I was laid off after 30 years with the company and eventually retired.