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Angler #1

US Kennedy

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Will be arriving home tomorrow after a cruise. It is set to tie up around 715 tomorrow morning. Now if any one would like to see a good site , this would be it as it sails through the Canal

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The actual full title of the ship is the United States Training Ship or USTS Kennedy, I did not include the T S as every one knows it is a training ship. On the other hand,like every one may not know it is a United States ship.

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Grandson came off the USTS Kennedy a shell back this morning and has to be back by midnight ,Ithink.

The ol washing machine will get a workout today. Six weeks of clothes to check out.

What a great way to grow up. Lucky kid.

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I tried to see the Ship,due to my misfortune of Traveling a Little faster than The Cranberry Hwy. allows,I Chatted with a Very nice Boune Police Officer. No Fine.He was nice,As he said"I'm fishing also,Look'n for the Bad guys"

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Old Goat glad to see your Grandson went out as a Poly Wog and came back as a Shell Back. He will remember the experience for sure as he has become part of a long standard Naval History, when one crosses the equator. Tell him to always keep his card, whenever he may cross again, lest he may undergo the trials again. How did he like kissing King Neptune's Belly ? Let him tell you about the experience and post it here.

 

I have made the crossing more then once and each time it was a different experience and a rather long ordeal, especially if you were still a Poly Wog

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A1 Let me tell you of his breakfast.

SEAWEED,FISH EGGS, AND OCTOPUSS JUICE.,,then crawl on the deck through fish and guts followed by geting washed with a deck hose.

O ya I forgot,,,unclog the toilets below deck with shirts stuffed in them

Next year will be his turn to dish it out.

Good for him,build character

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Old Goat he had it easy. Each Poly wog was assigned to a shell back one week prior to the crossing. The shell back would determine what ever he wanted to have you perform. bark like a dog, crawl on the deck,squats, shine shoes, give up a meal and any other chore he could think of. The day of the crossing we were all awake before daybreak and herded together in the mess room for the morning breakfast of coffee and tobasko juice with burnt toast. If any one up chucked they had to use a spoon and clean it up and swallow it. No one had a stitch of clothes on and we were all brought to the Bow to greet the morning sun, as a salt water hose was spreading cold salt water across each sailor. The normal chant was expounded by every slimy poly wog during this whole time and if some one did not respond on demand a cat of nine tails was used on your body. A few who fought or were hiding were brought to the Bow and tied of on the capstan and beaten, Normally the Captain of the ship loses command for the day of the crossing to the lead shell back, but in this case the Captain stepped in and stopped the beating. We only had one that needed treatment after the ordeal and he was high lined to the carrier we were escorting for surgery repair. The carrier had more then a dozen sailors with broken arms and legs, so were not to bad off.

 

After the greeting of sun rise and watching the Dolphins and Porpoises crossing the bow[ A good luck charm if you are a sailor] we were all line up to await the next trial. We were all given a shot of quinine and all were given a haircut. Those that had long hair were given X or o or baldies. Then we got to kiss King Neptunes belly with hard smelly grease from the engine room , before crawling through the two laundry bags with two weeks of garbage in it. Once you got out of the garbage chute, while you got your body beaten, they placed you in a clean salt water container and actually would continue to hold your head under the water until you exclaimed that you were no long a slimy poly wog , but a Shell back

 

I was the last one through the garbage chute as the sailer behind me came out with blood spirting all over the place. It was found out later that a top from a can had been left in and the jagged edges had made a cut from his wrist to under his large muscle on the biscept . It was a rather grim site.

 

 

Because of the crawl;ing around on hand s and knees on the hard deck tred for the better part of a week , MY knees became infected and the ships doctor wanter to keep me out of the last phaze, I was a critical part of the ships crew and the leading FireControl Petty officer and he was afraid that I would not be able to do my duty. I spoke with the Captain and he did not allow the doc, to take me out. It would have meant going through the whole ordeal at another time. I wrapped them as good as I could and still to this day i carry the scars from that ordeal.

 

Now you know where the term old salt comes from. I still have my Shell Back Card

 

.Things have changed from those days, but the experience is one he will speak about for a long time , that i am sure off.

 

 

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