US Naval Communication Station

Bouknadel, Morocco

The following photographs and commentary were contributed by Darian Paganelli (Pag) who served at Bouknadel, Morocco. He can be contacted at dpanop3698@sbcglobal.net.

The following photographs are of personnel from the Communication Shack, a promotion ceremony and a long remembered Moroccan employee on the Base.

 

Electronic Technicians stationed at Bouknadel USNRS(T) in April/May of 1969. The names of the sailors in the picture are as follows:

Front Row from Left ETC Alan Gorsuch, Chief WarrantOfficer (CWO) Sidney Wheeler, ETCM Dye (AKA SLICK), ETC James Pennington

Second Row Back From Front from Left ETN3 Lenard Lippert, ETN2 David Crockett, ETN3 Fons, ETN2 Peeler, ET1 Jackson,

Third Row Back From Front from Left ETN3 Frank Townsend, SK1 Terry, (store keeper for electronic supplies at the T building), ETNSN Darian Paganelli, ETN2 Deaner

Fourth Row Back From Front from Left ETN2 Alan Hartman, ETN2 Sharp, ET1 Heisel

Unfortunately, many of the ET's who worked at and passed through Bouknadel from March 1969 - December 1970 are not included in this picture. Their names are as follows:

Weakly ET1, Daniels ETN2, Helman ETN3, Walker ETN2, Riley ET1, Slaggy ETN3, Parker ETN2, Casher ET1, Welton ETN3, Mastantuno ET1, Bednarcyzk ETN2, Holmes ETN3, Bill Jennings ETN2, Bill died in a motor scooter accident on the perimeter road around the antenna field of the base. Bill's loss was deeply felt by all who knew and worked with him. There are two other ET's whom I could not identify or remember the names of, an ETNSN who worked with me nights in the latter half of 1970 and ETN2 who left in early May of 1969 whose names escape me.

 

The second picture is of the Radiomen stationed at Bouknadel USNRS(T) in April/May of 1969. I do not remember all of their names, but will list as many as I can. They are as follows:

Front Row from Left RMCS Joseph Kilgore, CWO Sidney Wheeler, RMCS Sanger, RMC David Ricketts

Second Row Back from Left RM2 Robert Golden, RM1 Herbert Hedlund, RM2 Fred Laws, RM2 Richard Miller

Third Row Back from Left RMSN Roland ?, RMSN Tom Makin, RM2 Sheldon Willard, RMSN ???, RM1 Jordan

Fourth Row Back Front from Left Bob Henry RMSN, RM2 Jerry Bough, RMSN Grimes, RM2 Del Mattson, RMSN Jim Smalley.

Web-Editors Note! Pag did relate a humorous story regarding both he and Chief Kilgore above: "Once upon a moon lit night in the fall of 1969. A friend of mine (Joe Kilgore) and I drove into Kenitra from Bouknadel and drank a goodly amount of wine. On the way back to the base at USNRST Bouknadel, the old BMW R500 seemed to really run quite well. .. Maybe it was the wine, I was not sure. Anyway, as I turned off of Mohamed V and poured the coal to the old BMW and zoomed up the road, I noticed something odd as I crested the hill and rode down the road through the meadow. .. It was all white? What? my wine soaked brain asked me. I could not figure this out. It does not SNOW in Morocco!? What the H&*^ is going on?? The ground was totally blanketed in white in the moon light. SHEEP! That is what was going on. A whole herd of SHEEP (about a couple hundred) were bedded down in front of me as I tore down the road at 65 mph. Jeeze, I mused to my drunk self, I am going to die in a sea of mutton. I just let off of the throttle and coasted through the herd of sheep, accepting the inevitable. As I let go of the throttle, the old BMW cruised lazily but very noisily through the herd of sheep. It had a habit of back firing and sounding like a low flying airplane when the engine backed off. The sheep began to wake up with a look of terror in their eyes, I was about 8 feet from them as they struggled to jump up, wondering if they were shot. They bolted and got out of my way like the parting of the red sea. I rode the entire distance of about 50 to 60 feet through a flock of terrified and fleeing sheep in the Moroccan moonlight without hitting a single one of them. I might have given a few of them a heart attack, but at least not one of them got run over. The moral of this story: Although red wine goes well with mutton, perhaps one should enjoy them both at a dinner table instead of getting drunk and driving a motorcycle through a herd of terrified sheep on a moon lit night".

My appologies to the Radiomen and Electronic Technicians whose names I could not recall. It has been 40 years and it has taken me a few weeks to remember about 14 of the names. If you care, please let us know your names if you view this picture on the Bouknadel website.

 

 

The third picture is of an advancement presentation ceremony that took place on November 4th 1970 at the Outrigger Patio outside the EM club at Bouknadel USNRS(T). All of the personnel in the picture had been promoted to the next higher pay grade (and are shown at their new pay grades) Their names are as follows:

From the Left, RMCS Steele, QM1 R. Wimberly, CS3 A.J. Nagy, ET1 P. Riley, RM3 Scott Routie, ETN2 D. Paganelli, ETN3 Godek, RM3 Comageys, DC1 Dewey, EN3 Gardner, ENC Jackson

Had to include this last picture in the group because I wrote the names on the back of each individual pictured some 30 years ago when they were still fresh in my mind.

You will notice that there are four RM's and two ET's who were not in the earlier 1969 picture. ETN2 Paganelli is in both pictures because he extended his tour in Morocco by 6 months for a 21 month total.

 

The Fourth Picture is of a very famous and well liked person Miloudi Ben Abdelkader who worked at the transmitter building for Gad knows how many years before and after I came and left. He is of course Miludi , I do not think that another picture of Miludi exists anywhere. The slide is a bit messed up because I was taking pictures around the building and saw Miludi outside. I asked him if I could take his picture. He said yes. As I cocked the camera, I realized that I was out of film. I pushed the release button and finished cocking the camera. What I got was a double exposure which I have clumsily fixed a bit with Adobe Elements 6 after I scanned it.. At least his face and general appearance are quite recognizable. I hope everyone gets as much of a kick out of his picture as I did when I found it in my slide collection.