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He's my HERO!

Discussion in 'Off Topic Threads' started by Charles.F.Phillips, Nov 11, 2009.

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  1. Charles.F.Phillips

    Charles.F.Phillips TS Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2009
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    He

    He's my hero!

    Actually, that should be heroes (the plural). I am talking about my two sons, but more about them in a minute.

    For those many people who have thanked me for my service, I thank you for your courtesy. In twenty three years I served all over the globe, for the most part doing my best to put the fear of God into Ivan. Four years on Okinawa and its jungles, four years in the desert and two trips above the Arctic Circle blasting Soviet aircraft with long range, air surveillance radar beams. I've served in every clime, if not every place and I've even had our so-called allies in South Korea lock and load and threaten to shoot me not once, but twice.

    The one thing I've never done is actually dodge bullets in war, declared or undeclared. We were told we were going into Lebanon (1976?) and later into Angola (1977?) and both times we were packed up and waiting to board the plane when it got called off. When we sent radio operators (which I was at the time) to man the Comm Center in Beruit, I was not selected for the first pump that was blown up in that fateful bombing. For Desert Shield/Storm, only 2 of the then existing MACS units were sent over and mine (MACS-5 now decommissioned) was not. I trained and practiced for war, but I never actually made war.

    My oldest son is a Petty Officer on the USS Blue Ridge and home ported in Yokosuka, Japan. Holy crap – what more could a single guy ask for? However, before that, he was a prison guard in Guantanamo Bay. The video clips in the news always showed docile prisoners being led around with manacles and a guard on each side of him. The truth is that handing prisoners was not always so safe and well-managed, and the prisoners were not always so docile. Remember, these are not men who were convicted of robbery, knowing that they would get out soon; these are men sworn to kill as many Americans as they possibly can.

    My youngest son is a Specialist in the Army and is now back in Iraq for his second tour. On his first tour, he may have lived most of the time in the relative safety of a Forward Operating Base (FOB), but he did his share of patrols, and because he's a diesel mechanic, he spent a few months in the heart of Baghdad repairing vehicles and rode on some of the ugliest convoys. During one rocket attack, a rocket hit the latrine right in from of his tent. This might have sounded hilarious in hindsight except that his First Sergeant took shrapnel in his leg and had to be medevac'd to Germany. Thankfully, he quickly recovered and returned to the unit a few weeks later. My son, I'm happy to say, was unhurt.

    It was easy to choose the military when I joined because they evacuated Saigon six months before and the war was over. I am constantly amazed at the current generation joining the military when they know full well that they will go to war. In this day of modern media and beheadings posted on the internet for all to see, it's hard to romanticize war and not easy to brush off as the ignorance of youth.

    Many men will tell you that their hero is their father. I loved my father and he was a good man, so I understand how anyone would feel that way. The truth is that in the past three years my boys, Justin and Daniel, have done more for their country than I did in twenty-three years. They are my heroes.

    I owe my freedom to my boys and to all of you who had to dodge bullets. Thank you and I hope you enjoy this Veterans Day.

    R/s,<br />
    Charlie
     
  2. Snookassassin

    Snookassassin Member

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    Messages:
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    You gotta be a proud father Charlie.

    Snookassassin, Clif Adams
     
  3. pyrdek

    pyrdek Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    Don't know if your AC&W radar service ever included Iceland but if it did, and you are not already aware of it, there is a web site maintained by the US Radar Sites Iceland reunion group. It includes those who served at the H-1, H-2, H-3, H-4 and associated sites at Keflavik and Rockville.

    The URL is:
    http://usradarsitesiceland.org/

    If your service includes H-3 (Hofn Iceland) you may also be interested in my web site dedicated to H-3 Vets from the 1967-68 period. That URL is:

    http://pyrdek.tripod.com/

    Congrats and Thank you for your service on this the (almost) Eleventh Hour of the Eleventh Day of the Eleventh Month.
     
  4. Pull & Mark

    Pull & Mark Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2006
    Messages:
    5,408
    I would like to Thank Charlie,Justin,and Daniel for all you have done for all of us here on this Holiday. I would like to also Thank Morton C. Ben a good friend of mine, and all you out there I have never met. Happy Veterans Day. Missed the 11's by 7 min.'s. Break-em all. Jeff
     
  5. Charles.F.Phillips

    Charles.F.Phillips TS Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2009
    Messages:
    330
    Thank you all!
    <br /><br />

    pyrdek,

    Very cool site! For most of the time I was in, the Marine Air Control Squadrons used transportable, long range air surveillance radars for ground control of intercept (GCI) operations. They now have the additional mission of Tactical Ballistic Missile (TBM) detection with version 3 of the AN/TPS-59 radar. I was trained on version 1, which was solely for air-breathing targets. It was similar to the Air Force's FPS-117 radar.

    I was also trained on the TPS-32 (which was also used by USAF ACS units) and TPS-63 radars. If you change the number at the end of the link above, you'll get some info on them.

    I got my "Order of the Blue Nose" in Boda, Norway when I was with MACS-6 at Cherry Point, NC. Northern Norway was our area of responsibility for WW-III and supporting the Navy in closing access to the port of Murmansk was our primary mission.

    I was also with MACS-5 in Beaufort, SC and I was the Radar Maintenance Chief for MACS-4 on Okinawa.

    R/s,<br />
    Charlie
     
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