Boot Camp Photos

Fire Fighting Training

While in boot camp every recruit went through fire fighting training.  Fire on board ship is a fearsome thing.  Evey seagoing sailor must know something about fire fighting aboard ship.

Typical Barracks
The Recruit Training area at San Diego was known as Camp Nimitz.  Above is atypical barracks.  Everything had to be exactly placed or you were in trouble.

Administration Building
San Diego Recruit Training Center.  The Administration Building.  Pictured are sailors mustering up in front of the Admin building.  Even fifty years later I can vividly remember walking up those steps past that decorative missile.

   Boot Camp Photos
On the Firing Range


Sailors on the firing range during boot camp training.  This was 1961 and nobody really cared that much about a recruit's over-all  health.  Before everyone started firing, a petty-officer went around with a wad of cotton and dared anyone who wasn't a real man to take some cotton to put in their ears to avoid noise damage.

 Laundry Day      

Behind each Barracks was the laundry area.  Every recruit washed his own clothes with a bucket and a hand brush.  Every piece of clothing had to be hung on the line in exactly the same manner with short pieces of string called ties. 


Tracer Photos:Mostly of the enlisted crew.  These photos are fifty years old.

The photograph on the left was taken in early 1964 while the Tracer was on patrol.  The photograph was taken from the Port Wing on the Bridge.  If you look closely you can make out two cooks sitting on the hatch, under the radar, wearing whites and t-shirts taking a smoke break. Just beyond the two cooks is an open hatch that led down into the area of the Mess Decks.  The photo on the right shows four sailors.   From left to right they are:  Eddie Bailey (Signalman 2nd class) Bailey often served as Mess-Deck Master-at-Arms.  Next man, going left to right, is Warren Korkhouse, leading petty officer in the Gunnery Division for the last few months of 1964.  Korkhouse was a Gunner's Mate 2nd class.  Next to Korkhouse is a cook whose name I do not remember (it may be William Jones) but I don't remember for sure.  In any case the sailor in the photo is a CM2 (Commisaryman 2nd class) and I do recall he was a good friend of Korkhouse’s.  The last sailor in the picture is a Storekeeper whose name was Maurice Hall.  Hall was a Storekeeper 3rd class and a nice guy.

This photo was taken with Korkhouse's brand new Polaroid camera of which he was quite proud. The photo was taken while the sailors were standing in an open doorway in the Commissary area. 



Below are two more photos taken fifty years ago with Warren Korkhouse's Polaroid camera.  From left to right; Warren Korkhouse GMG2 sitting at the desk in the armory.  Behind him are tools that were used to dismantle the Tracer's two 3-inch gun mounts for maintenance.  Near his left shoulder is the tiny brass cannon that was there when I came aboard in early 1963 and was still there when I left in late 1964.  I wish I had that tiny cannon as a memento of those days.  Wonder what ever happened to it?  The Polaroid photo on the left has not fared so well over the last half century.  The photo is of sailors who worked in the Gunnery Division under Korkhouse... left, a young guy named Struthers… middle, Mike Richard… and right, the creator of this website, Roland Phillips.  The photo was taken in the Armory in front of the familiar tool board probably by Korkhouse.


The Photos below were also taken with Korkhouse's Polaroid camera in the Armory.  The photo on the left shows two sailors who were assigned to the Gunnery Division in the process of cleaning M1 Garand Rifles.  (The designation of Garand is for the man who invented the M1 rifle whose name was John Garand)  They had just disassembled the weapons, cleaned them thoroughly and were re-assembling them. 

The Armory on the USS Tracer contained ten M1 rifles, four Thompson Sub Machine Guns, two Browning Automatic Rifles (BAR’s), twenty or thirty M1911 Forty-Five Automatic Pistols, two 12 Gauge Riot Shotguns and a fifty caliber Machine Gun. 

The photo on the right is of the author, Roland Phillips, third-class Gunner's mate who (at the time of the photo taking) worked under Warren Korkhouse.  The leading petty officer for the Gunnery Division before Korkhouse was a man named Scott (GMG1).  Scott was an older man, especially to Phillips who was twenty years old at the time.  Scott was a old time “Lifer” but he knew his stuff.  He was a first-class Gunner's Mate (he should have been a chief petty officer but the Gunners Mate rate was closed for CPO’s at the time).  Scotty had been in the Navy for decades; he retired around the summer of 1964 with thirty years in the Navy. 
The Navy designation for the Gunners Mate Rating was GMG meaning Gunners-Mate-Guns, so as not to confuse the GMG Rating with other gunnery specialists such as Gunners-mate technicians (GMT), or Gunners-mate aviation (GMA)


The two photos below are of Deck Sailors on watch on the Flying Bridge.  On the left, the sailor is Richard Archeletta with his hand on the signal lamp on the Starboard side of the ship.  Archeletta was a Seaman in the Deck Division when I left he ship.  He was originally from Pueblo, Colorado and was a friend of the author.  The photo on the right is of a sailor on the helm during the watch.  The sailor is Struthers who was a Seaman in the Deck Division and a Striker in the Gunnery Division.  In this photo he is actually steering the ship from the Flying Bridge.