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Web-Editor Note!

Please know, that after so many years and as the Port Lyautey Veterans pass on, it presents an understandable reason that new entries and additions available for posting have become less. Please also know that less posts are not because of any neglect by this Web Editor and I will continue to post comments of those that remain interested in its history and all that connects to that most loved time in US Naval and Military History.

POSTED: 2/19/18/ 1100 hours

Dear Lou,

Thanks for all the great memories and history on your web site.I was on the main supply base with my husband Kevin McCarthy from 1968-1969, where we lived in cozy comfort in a quonset hut apartment. Our
daughter was born in the maternity ward that I just read was lost in an earthquake. Kevin was in Base Security. We now live in Albany, NY and are retired. I have a short recollection/memoir of our time in Morocco that I wrote for our children several years ago after I realized their understanding was pretty muddled about their parents' experience living on a US Navy base in North Africa. I'd be glad to share this if you or others are interested. Following is an excerpt:

*Daily Life on Base in Kenitra, Morocco, 1968 **Exerpt from longer work*

By Mary McCarthy, wife of Kevin McCarthy, YM3, Base Security

Our military housing was an apartment in a Quonset hut on the base in Kenitra. Our address was TQ15B. Actually it was half the hut, with another apartment on the other side. It had curved walls, ship's gray
painted floors, a small living room/dining room, two tiny bedrooms, a galley kitchen, and small bath. All was furnished in Navy issue furniture made of golden maple wood and green leather cushions. We were newlyweds,
and it had everything we needed. For us, it was home sweet home in North Africa.

The strip of married enlisted men's Quonset huts was well located for recreation. The base swimming pool was diagonally across a grassy field, and touring USO bands would occasionally play poolside. We never rated
major celebrities, but bands starting out would sometimes visit. At the pool patio, we could always buy tasty Moroccan brochettes, small skewers of beef or lamb on a stick. In photos now grown old, friends like Ron Updyke,Dawn and Larry Blankenship, Oley Olsen, Greg Miller, and Sam Harris are all young and playful around the water.

Beneath those sunny surfaces was a constant recognition that there was a war going on in Vietnam, that guys sometimes disappeared in the middle of the night for reassignments, and that the medics on base were there for
training before shipping out to field or helicopter or hospital assignments in Vietnam.

Technically, we were on a Moroccan training base. There was a contingent of Air Force personnel who provided flight training for the Moroccan military. I remember diving to the floor behind the couch in our Quonset
hut one day when a training flight needed a little more altitude. The real reason for a US presence in Morocco was a second military base, Sidi Yahya, which was a covert communications facility for military operations in
Vietnam. Morocco itself was rated by the Navy as hardship duty because of its isolation, a status that brought a slighter higher pay scale. Our base was the supply installation and thus a Navy operation.

*“Oh, say can you see by the dawn’s early light…”* The movie theater was just across the street. We knew we were late if we heard the first notes playing of the *Star Spangled Banner*. A recording of the national anthem played before each film while an image of an American flag was projected. The theater and the Mess Hall were the only places on base to see a Stars and Strips flag. Because this was technically a Moroccan training base, American flags were not allowed to be flown. The flag grew to be a stronger symbol for us in its absence. We might not have missed the sight of our country’s flag if we were simply travelers amid a bustle of new experiences in a foreign land. But being forbidden to see our flag created an entirely different perspective. The stars and stripes fluttering on the theater screen brought an unexpected rise of sentiment and forever
strengthened the meaning of the flag to us.

A second theater on base showed outdoor movies. Because there was 9 months of dry weather after the rainy season, a large screen had been built to watch movies outdoors with rows of white wooden park benches for seating.I remember a pleasant evening under a Moroccan sky watching Boris Pasternak’s epic story of the Russian Revolution in the movie, *Dr. Zivago.* We seemed to be not just in a foreign land but in a vortex of paradoxes.

Mary McCarthy mamc331@gmail.com

POSTED: 2/19/18/ 1100 hours

Happened on this site, interesting from the perspective of someone who retired there and was stationed there in the 60's / 70's.


Russ ~ free4lance@charter.net

POSTED: 1/20/18/ 0600 hours

Lou, this is a great site,have been surfing the diff years of the guest book looking for any of my old friends. I served at the Port from Nov.1959 to May 1961. Disbursing Clerk down on the strip beside the French Hanger. Many good memories of the Port and surrounding locations(Moulay Idriss, Rabat,Casablanca, Meknes, Happy Vally,Sidi yahia, Medhia Beach to name a few. Was there when the great earthquake at Agadir struck. Many people lost that night. Also present when King Mohammed V passed away. 30 days confinement to base while the tribesmen demonstrated in the fields outside the main gate. Many fond memori3s of the outside theatre. Especially of Sandra Dee in a great movie that many young sailors over the edge. Port Lyautey haunts me to this day. Wish I could go back for a visit. Thanks for all your hard work and sacrifice of your time. Will continue looking for old friends. All my best wishes. Larry T. Cook, DK3 (ltcook41#outlook.com)

POSTED: 12/18/17/ 0930 hours

Hey Lou - long time!

I just noticed a typo credit in an article I was about to link http://www.portlyautey.com/Abbott.htm.

In the first paragraph there is a parenthetical indicating that John Herndon was an AT, AQ, and PT with special intelligence NEC codes.

I'm that guy - not John! John retired as an E-9, and has continued in a civilian role aircraft inspector.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays,
Chuck Huber (AT, AQ, PT 1953-1963)

POSTED: 12/18/17/ 0930 hours

I was a corpsman at the Kenitra base hospital from July,1970 till June,1971. I worked the ob-gyn ward and assisted the doctors and nurses in delivering babies. I maintained the delivery room and helped the nurses with patient care. One of my biggest thrills was delivering 2 babies in the labor room while an inexperienced frantic nurse searched the hospital for the doctor. I served in Aleutian Islands, San Diego, and Honolulu after Morocco. All were unique in there on way, but Morocco was the greatest experience and most rewarding of my military duty. I played on the base all-star flag football team which got killed by the marines and the CTs from Sidi around Thanksgiving. I also played on the 71' base basketball team, which was very good for a base of 1000. We played in a Rota tournament and advanced to larger tournament on the Air Force base in Madrid. It was a nice 3 weeks off base experience. We only had 8 players, but 3 were very good. Can not remember anyone's last name now. Had to miss out on fast pitch softball because of being transferred to Alaska. Still searching for old shipmates. This is a great web site to visit. This is my third post over the last 10 years, 2007 & 2014. Thank-you Lou for all your work

Mike Andrews Darlington,S. C. e-mail mader321@aol.com

POSTED: 6/29/17/ 0930 hours


This is Dave Burks. I don’t remember a thing of Morocco seeing I was born there in 1956. My dad (Jim Burks) was stationed there as a CT. In fact, it was Morocco where my dad made chief. My sister was born there as well. I have two other older siblings who may remember being at Pt. Lyautey. Hoping they will join the group.

Dave, dburks@rsu24.org

POSTED: 6/29/17/ 0930 hours

Hi Lou - Ed Clayton, Sr., AC2, '53 - 55 here. I just want to relay to you one of the most improbable coincidences that I believe that could occur! The reason for this was my baseball cap that has on the front of it, "NAS Port Lyautey" and under that, "US Navy".

I was on vacation with a friend last week in Maine and last Wednesday morning, while having breakfast in Denny's, in Ellsworth, a gentleman at the next table, about in his 50's, was with his 80-some year old father, came over to my table and asked me when I was at Port Lyautey. When I told him, he introduced me to his father, (who had some dementia but could communicate), who was stationed on base during the same time I was there, but that he was in a different unit so I had never met him. His son then told me that both he and his sister were born in Port Lyautey.

I have never met anyone from the base while wearing my cap before, so I thought that was a pretty rare occurrence! If by chance that man sees this, I hope he will contact me at pono3006@aol.com. Small world!

Thought this might be worth putting in the guest book.

Thanks Lou and keep the site going.


POSTED: 6/18/17/ 2045 hours

June 19, 2017

On the 19th day of June, 2017, two 1946-47 Pensacola Naval School of Photography Classmates and "buddies" will celebrate another one of their "self-made and arranged" USN Photo Class of 4-47 Reunions. It will also be the renewal of a 70 year friendship for the two, former Naval Aerial Photographers, Tom Nakamura and Jerry Zimmerman. They will meet for lunch at the Kenosha I-94 - HWY. 50 Cracker Barrel in Wisconsin at 11:30 AM. They will be joined by Tom's wife Pat and daughter Carol, and Jerry's daughter, Judy.

Besides Tom and Jerry sharing some old Navy stories, with the help of the three ladies, they will update each other with past and recent family news.

As always, when the Nakamura's and Zimmerman's get together, it will be another, wonderful visit.

Any other Classmates of USN 4-47 are welcomed and invited to join us.

POSTED: 5/25/17/ 2245 hours


I tried to get onto Portlyautey.com tonight, and ended up with a religious themed page. I hope all is ok with you, and this is just a glitch that will sort itself out.

I was going to post that BUC Jeffery Krentz, stationed in Kenitra with me July 74 to January 76, died 10 May 2017 in Gulfport Mississippi. I was stationed with him all that time there, and ran into
him again in Puerto Rico in 1989 when he was on Det there with a battalion from Gulfport. He went on to bigger and better things, Legion of Merit, Purple heart, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Navy Comm with "V", and all this after 1989.

Just wanted others who knew him to know. When I get more details, I will update.

Again, Lou, I hope all is ok on your end, and the website sorts itself out.

Pat Weil
Adel, Iowa
Kenitra 73-78

POSTED: 5/22/17/ 0815 hours

My name is Richard Carl Williams....My father was William Carl Williams...now deceased, was a Yeoman stationed in Port Lyautey in 1958. My mother traveled from Hinton,W.VA. to Port Lyautey, where,on August 24,1959, in the Naval Station Hospital, I was born.

Brought back to Norfolk,VA.,when I was 16 mos old, naturalized a U.S.citizen in 1974. My father played guitar at either a base club,or local spot, where my mother would come to watch,and sometimes dance with friend's according to her. She would tell me about the fatimas that babysat me,and the camel's that would walk past the apt. while dad was on duty.The base no longer existed when I had the age,f und's and wherewithal to travel. Would have loved to have walked on the ground I was hatched.

Proud American and Navy brat, Rick rcworf@cox.net

POSTED: 3/09/17/ 1530 hours

My name is John Vincent. I was a CTR3 and stationed at Sidi Yahia from March 1966 to March 1967. My good friend was Chester Dore’ and the Bradbury brothers all from La. We spend a lot of time at the Fleet Club. And Lillys Bar. Chester went to Rota and I went to Bremahaven. Have been trying to get in touch with those guys ever since. If anyone has any information my email address is vincent-assoc@earthlink.net. Ate breakfast at the Eldorado Restaurant one morning and paid for it for several days. Had some great times there. My other friend was Howe C. Morris. Thanks for having this website. John

POSTED: 2/28/17/ 0830 hours




POSTED: 1/25/17/ 0805 hours

My Dad, James Gray, MMFN, was stationed at Port Lyautey and worked with the Aircraft crash and salvage team and was qualified to wear the silver suit on that team. He arrived in 1958 and left in 1961 retiring from the Navy in 1974 as a MMCM. I was born at the Naval Hospital on the base. My family has home movies from that time.

Jonathan Gray, Jonathan.Gray@drs.com

POSTED: 1/24/17/ 1540 hours

Ed Koerperich UT-2, NTC Kenitra, after I made my first posted, I read all the Guest Book Logs, and although I did not recognize any names, it brought back on huge flood of memories to say the least. I was stationed there between late 73 - early 75, tried to stay longer, but Capt. Parrish thought 2 years was enough. Probably because I got into a little mischief, (nothing bad) but at 18 years old, first duty station, I think most folks reading this post can relate. What an adventure it was to be there for sure, and I have often times thought about the area and people I met there many times. Civilians I met after I got out of the Seabees, just had that "far away" look about themselves when I would tell some of the stories and things we got to do. I soon figured out, that unless you were military, most people just could not relate to the adventures I had among all my friends there. I lost touch with some of them, Lori Shriver, Tom Treece and his wife Jane, Daniel W. Lee and his wife Jan, Sheila Green, Mike Ritter, Jim Crocket, so if anyone knows the whereabouts of any of these good people, by all means let me know.. EdKope@outlook.com

Wonderful site indeed

POSTED: 1/11/17/ 2030 hours

I was born in the Port Lyautey NAS Hospital about a month before the Maternity Ward collapsed into rubble due to the earthquake. It is interesting seeing all the pictures of my place of birth and seeing the base where my Father was stationed.

Roger Muse roger.muse.1@us.af.mil

POSTED: 12/26/16/ 2030 hours

Dear Lou,

As always, thank you for creating and continuing to main the portlyautey.com website.

Because your website has no “LIKE” to check, there is no simple way for the thousands that have viewed these pages to show an interest in all you do.

I served as the N.A.S. Navy 214 Port Lyautey, French Morocco Base Photographer from August 2, 1947 to April 15, 1948. At 88, I am one of the youngest WWII Veterans, I enlisted in June of 1946. Because WWII wasn’t declared over until December 1946, I was awarded the WWII Victory Medal. I question if there are any older, surviving Vets, that served on the Base earlier than me that remain in contact with this website? If so, please ask them to check in with you so that we can have a head count.

I am also interested to learn who and why they visit this website? To those viewers, I ask, please,when you visit leave a message to let Lou know why you made the contact, did you enjoy your visit? Will you return in the future? Will you pass this web-site on to others?

Thank you,

Jerry Zimmerman

POSTED: 11/02/16/ 0530 hours

Charles T. Bud Leshan SKSN out of storekeeper School Bayonne N. J. to Port Lyautey Supply Depot. After reading much about Port Lyautey on the Internet, nothing was ever mentioned about a PB4Y2 that left Port Lyautey in 1949 or 1950, I don't remember which, and was shot down in the Black Sea by the Russians. One of the Navy wife's in our Supply Department received the Navy Cross on behalf of her husband who was on that plane. I was there when they built the golf course and laughed when I heard they used oil on the greens, I don't know if they ever grew grass, but the guys loved it. There was football softball and many other things as well to keep us in shape. Along with a radio in the supply warehouse to listen to GCA as the flyers were flying blind. All in all it was good duty, but I was ready for a transfer.

Bud Leshan

POSTED: 10/21/16/ 0840 hours

Hey Lou,

Glad to see the site is still up. Thanks!

I'm Ron Whisner, Photograpers Mate.. Kenitra 1975-1977. It's been 8 years since I posted and wanted to do a follow-up. Since leaving Morocco in 1977, the group of us guys that hung out together finally had a reunion after 35+ years of talking long distance about it. That group consisted of Pat Weil(man), Ron Martin (Squeaky), Phil (Sleeze) McNally, Vic Nuzzo and myself.

Wow... it seems that the only thing time has done was make us older. It didn't stop the swizzling of the nectar of the gods. Nor the story telling of happenings while stationed in Morocco. At least to the best recollection of/for the same. Eh.. maybe some exaggeration(s).

Here is the Captain's notes that was sent to all hands:

As the good ship pulled into "Weezner" port, close to dusk, for a temporary Drydock. The sky was giving the ominous warning of what was to come... Red Sky At Night... Sailors Delight. Let the games begin!

The Boys Were Back In Town. The Drinks Would Flow and The Blood Would Spill. And If The Boys Wanna Fight... You Better Let Em.
As with ALL Shore Leave, we mingled with the local tribes until that same sun that went down the previous evening, came back up again.

This Ritual continued for 48 hours, 10+ cases of the local beverage and assorted fifths of the local bug juices. Similar to those found in Gibraltor. Not to mention the local cuisine of 4 lbs Smoked Pit Cow, 4lbs Smoked Pit Pig, crustations, various salads, bird eggs, pasta and the like, that the natives had prepared.

It was only prior to the morning Sun's re-appearance that it was noticed that the younger local natives had indulged too much with the sailors traditions and habits, and they had succumbed and went back to the fetal position in their bunks.

As it turned out, there was enough of the local beverages and bug juices, that was had. That the good ship was able to be re-floated from drydock.

It was then, with great sadness, as with All shore leave, that this port of call would now have to be left, only to memories as with other ports. And, of those names and faces of our missing shipmates that had already been rotated on to other duty stations. A moment of silence please. :-(

It is with that sentiment that now we journal our plight/adventure in the form of letters/emails to our loved ones AND FRIENDS.

The trip will be remembered by the sailors as..."A Weekend at Bernie's combined with Bill and Teds Great Adventure piloted by Captain Kirk".

Editors Note: I had the worst hangover, for a day, in 35 years. Then 1/2 a hangover the next day. Followed by only a 1/4 hangover the following day. That is the reason for my sloooow response in writing.

In a later communiqué, from all involved, it was stated that everyone there must have had a twin. As 1 person couldn’t possibly feel that hungover".

I would hope that next port of call, with the previous good time had by all, can be had by/with ALL !!! SOON !!!!

Remember... where there's a will.... there's a dead person, or are they just passed out. :-)

Once again Lou.... Thanks for the memories! Take Care!

Ron Whisner evngrnr@yahoo.com

Web-editor Note! - And at their 2014 reunion were, left to right, Ron Whisner, Vic Nuzzo, Ron Martin, Phil McNally, and Pat Weil

POSTED: 9/28/16/ 1500 hours

Hi Lou,

My name is Matt Crocker, I’m a film-maker from the UK.

I’m currently making a documentary about the history of surfing in Europe and I spent some time in Kenitra a few month back learning about the birth of surfing in the country.

As you may know the first surfers in Morocco were believed to have been based at Port Lyautey, their surf sessions at Mehdia Plage then inspired the local’s to pick up the sport and so the story begins.

Having been based at Port Lyautey, I wonder if you knew anything about this and if you might know the name of any of the people involved? I am also on the hunt for pictures from the time (50s - 70s) ideally showing the surfing, but more realistically just showing soldiers on the base at that time.

It would be great to hear from you, it’s has been amazing looking at the pictures on your web site, a wonderful find given the niche subject of my hunt!

Many thanks Lou,


Matt Crocker | Producer / Director
Level Films
31 Berkeley Sq, Bristol, BS8 1HP
Mob. 07734 935071
Email. matt@levelfilms.co.uk
Skype. mattatlevelfilms

POSTED: 7/26/16/ 0510 hours

Marine Detachment there 1953 - 1955. Best duty station ever! I did guard duty at the base entries and the ammo depot. Dated the daughter of an US Air Force master sergeant that lived at Mehdia Beach. Their last name was Boling. Lost contact with them completely after 1956.... Buddies were Joe Palilla, Larry Pierce. Would love hearing from any of the Marines that were there at the same time .....

Jim Facciolla....jim.facciolla@msn.com.

POSTED: 7/17/16 1245 hours


I served as a AK3 in NAS Supply from Aug 1962 to June 1964. I worked 'down the hill' in Bldg 69, Main Supply. I was also in the Base Movie watching a movie when it was announced to the audience that President Kennedy had been shot and killed, 22 Nov 1963.

I remember going into town in Kenitra and visiting the waterhole 'The Fleet".

Aviation Storekeeper 3rd Class Bill Brahney WBrahne@aol.com

POSTED: 5/08/16 0330 hours

Name is Harry Thompson. Lt Jg. USNR. Arrived Port Lyautey straight out of Navy Supply School in Athens, GA as a 22 year old Ensign. Came through NROTC at Ga Tech. Left states from Charleston S C Air Force base headed to Nourasseur A F B outside of Casablanca. Landed in Bermuda and on way to the Azores developed engine trouble. Hopped a flight on a P2V headed straight to Pt Lyautey. A scary flight.

Relieved Ted Prehodka who in turn relieved Lt j g Ed Mims as Disbursing Officer .Ted was a great boss. Disbursing Office was right near airstrip the French fighters used on their way to Algeria. Lived in the BOQ along with some great guys mostly in their mid twenties. Rode bikes to Media Beach then got a Volkswagon that came in by ship to Casablanca. Traveled all over Morocco,--Fez, Meknes. Rabat, Casablanca, Merrakash, Sidi Slimane, Agadir, middle and high Atlas Mountains to Gorges of Todra, Ksare Souk and Tinerha. Many trips to Bouknadel Beach. Ted and his wife Grace lived off base and they invited me over for dinner and holidays many times . People in Supply Dept that I remember were Pat Loftin whose husband was at Public Works, CDR Healy, CDR LeBough, Cdr Donnerly. Base commanders were Capt McCurtan and Capt Counihan. Played lots of tennis in Rabat and Casablanca, even went to London and Newport on Navy Tennis Team.Coached supply dept baseball and basketball teams. They had just quit having a Football team on base. Bowling was very popular. In Jan 61 VR 22 lost a plane near the Azores. Naval Ordinance Facility moved to Rota, Spain. Feb 61 King Mohammed died and his son Hussein took over.Good friends on base were Bryan O'Leary, Bob Seawright, ,Jim Gardner,and lots of guys at FICEURand FWC. Flew often to Gibralter even Paris, Granada and Naples. For a young batchlor that only spent 2 years in the Navy it was great duty. Many things 55 years later I still remember as if it were yesterday.Saw Rich Steiner's posting and it prompted me to do likewise. I recommend 2 books about Morocco 1. A Cold War Story by Lt Jim Conkey who was stationed at NOF and 2. Stolen Lives by Malika Oufakir ,the daughter who was imprisoned many years whose father Gen Okifakir was said to be involved with one of the assassination attempts on the King. Have really enjoyed reading this site and enjoyed writing this posting. Don't guess many of these people are around anymore. Harry Thompson hthompson 2001@comcast.net

POSTED: 3/11/16 1220 hours

I was the Disbursing Officer from 1962 to 1965. We had both our children born there on the base. I can remember like it was yesterday November 22nd,1963. While having the Officer of the Day duty for some reason I stopped in the Base Movie Theater and saw there was the Radio Station upstairs. I went to visit and the station operator asked me if I would like to hear news from the US. I put on the earphones and almost immediately the program was interrupted for an announcement that President Kennedy had been shot in Dallas. I had the projectionist stop the movie and made the announcement to those there. Everyone just got up and silently left in shock. The next day we were in a remote area of Morocco and everyone knew of the death and expressed their sorrow.

We are going next week on a three week revisit of Morocco and tried several ways to get on the base to visit but were not successful.

Richard Steiner, Retired LCDR ~ cgeidl@earthlink.net

POSTED: 2/29/16 1200 hours

I am Wayne Gleaton DPC USN Retired. I was at FICEUR from Mar 1961 - Nov 1962. At that time we were known as Machine Accountants. I read Fred Rose's post and thought about my tour and how we presented out badges to the Marines for entrance into the command. In my heart I just know he and I crossed paths many times considering our tours covered a lot of the same time there. Thanks for Fred's service and all the others who served. chiefgleaton@gmail.com

POSTED: 2/15/16 1900 hours


I am looking for a friend who left the US Naval Base in Kenitra in 1979 : He's name is Fulton Brian. Thanks in advance to tell me how I can contact him. I will be very glad to tak to him

Mostafa CHAOUF ~ moschaouf@gmail.com

POSTED: 1/3/16 1700 hours

My name is Fred Rose. I served at NAS Port Lyautey, as a US Marine, detached to the US. Navy, and worked with Fleet Intelligence Center for Europe. I and five other Marines did the amphibious section of navel intelligence. I currently live in Harlan, Ky. I was there from 1961-1963.