Happy New Year's 1961!!!
From: William E. Bauer PhD CRC
It was December 31, 1960. We were at Subic Bay, and for reasons unknown to me, I was assigned to Shore Patrol. I didn't think us Airedales ever got SP duty, but there I was - complete with an armband and walking the streets of Olongopo. I was a new 3rd class. It was a typical New Years' Eve. Lots of men were already drunk and it was nowhere near midnight. Occasionally someone got rowdy, and I was glad that the guys with me knew more about SP duty than I did .. at least I hoped they did.
Around 10:00 PM (or 2200 hours as you remember), we were told that the Bennington was going to G.Q. and was departing shortly. At first we did not believe it, but were eventually convinced. Few of the sailors and marines we encountered believed it at first either. The most vivid images I have of the event was stacking sailors in the back of a pickup like cordwood. Some of those guys were big and all of them were heavy.
Most everyone got back to the ship, and by 0400 hours we were in the middle of the ocean somewhere. I suspect that we were not battle ready.
William E. Bauer
An AT3 in 1960-61