PORT LYAUTEY GUESTLOG FOR THE YEAR 2004
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POSTED: 12/27/04 @ 1810 hours
I was at the Communications Site at NAS Port Lyautey from Aug 53 until May 55. Worked in the NAS Communications center and the Relay center on Base. I worked the last three months of 55 at the receiver site. I did not stay on the base. I lived in town in a 5 room villa with a French Family right off Jardin Street near the train station. I used to walk down to the EM club and take the bus out to Sidi Yahia every day. My twin brother Harold was stationed at VR-24 during my time there. He was a AM2 and I was a TE3. I enjoyed it very much while I was there.I am still working in Radio. Jerry Rarden, email@example.com
POSTED: 12/26/04 @ 1515 hours
What a pleasure to learn of this website!
On or about the 7th of July 1952 I stumbled out of a plane from Westover, Massachusetts, on to the mat at Port Lyautey. Boarded another plane and headed west two years later. In the meantime, I worked the control tower and operations, and did a stint as a MA. I could walk faster than the British Lancasters at takeoff speed, but I saw the first jet-equipped aircraft (the AJ's) get deployed for the "undisclosed" missions beyond Turkey.
My wife joined me to languish on the beach near the old fort at Medhia at the mouth of the Sebou. We lived for a while at the Mamora Hotel, and later in a downtown "villa" with a courtyard -- and even a nesting stork on the roof. We had some great meals at the two restaurants that sandwiched the Cafe des Arcades in downtown Kenitra. When my wife had a miscarriage, I recall the driver of the horse-drawn equivalent of a taxi whisking us to the hospital like a Roman cherrioteer.
We spent a lot of evenings at the EM Club where the specialty was a fried ham and egg sandwich on a buttered hamburger bun. I found the Moroccan people to be, generally speaking, quite delightful folks. We shared a lot of the same humor, were equally casual, bragged a lot in the same ways, etc. The French naval types never mingled -- I think they were too frequently adrift in a hashish fog. I could get high just riding into town on the bus with them.
Now, as a codger in my mid-70's with a little different perspective, I recall the pleasures of Port Lyautey knowing that, at the same time I was cultivating a skin cancer or two at the beach, many of my friends and fellow Navy enlistees were experiencing the horrors of the Korean War on the other side of the world.
Best wishes to you all.
D. F. Peer ~ email: firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 12/20/04 @ 1315 hours
Greetings from Virginia
AFRTS/CNL "Your voice of home, your sound of America". Former station engineer EM3 Jim Rindfleisch is searching for his favorite Commading Officer after all these years. Lt. Bird was the officer in charge of the radio station around 1969. Hello to all.
Jim ~ email: Debjim@att.net
POSTED: 12/12/04 @ 1400 hours
To start with, let me thank you ,and please receive my congratulations for your site on Port-Lyautey . It documents so well the life our American neighbours led at the time !
With your permission, I shall create a link which will enable the visitors of our own site on the town of Kenitra/Port-Lyautey (www.aakppa.com) to visit yours , in the hope that you, in turn , might create a link to ours.
We are an association whose members are people who have lived in Kenitra and have had some form of school , professional or military activity during the period of the French protectorat until 1965-1970.
I would be also very grateful if you could allow me to use some photographs of Port-Lyautey , present on your site, to illustrate ours. This would bring back so many good memories to our members!
We are therefore waiting for you to authorize us to use the pictures, and your approval as to the exchange of liks between our sites.
Please receive, dear Lou the fond memories of
Henri Aubert ~ email: email@example.com
POSTED: 12/10/04 @ 2320 hours
Not too many of us old birds around but would like to find maybe one or two of us early birds. Have some pics and slides, some of the aircraft like R4D's and R-5 & 6's. Also the French Aircraft like the Havillands and the commanders special two-seater he used for fast trips back to Paris.
Ran the all niter on WNAF quite often and Saturday Barbecue (western-country). Used air name of Lee Jayson.
Taught all the Mediterranean's base landing procedures via Links to all the 24's pilots during my tour. Also ran training film delights from medical to SeaBee specialties. Hope to hear from old airmates!
Walt Smith TD-2 (Tradevman) Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 12/03/04 @ 1300 hours
Really enjoyed the web site. Would love to hear from any concerned. I was in guard co July 1956----------Jan.1958 there. CHEERS!
T.A. Thompson, e-mail address: email@example.com
POSTED: 12/03/04 @ 0800 hours
Hi - I was stationed in Morocco from 1976 through 1978. Had a lot of great friends including Randy Clere, Jim Pattison, PJ, Pete Fox, Ron LeBlanc and others. I am still in touch with some of them, but have lost contact with others. Does anyone remember a guy with the last name of Pecci? He was stationed at Kenitra around 1977 - 1978. He lived on the beach and had a room in the enlisted quarters. I believe Pecci was from Mass. or New Jersey. If you know of Pecci, please contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks, (ex) YN2 Harold Coburn.
POSTED: 12/02/04 @ 1400 hours
I am Jeremy, my father was George CLAY, who was stationed in Kenitra Port Lyautey - 1961-1962. I would like to have some news, maybe from Rene or Herve Duplaine. My father loved so much France, and De Gaulle. I live in Bergerac.
Contact : email@example.com
POSTED: 11/30/04 @ 1400 hours
Great site Lou!
I was station in Port Lyautey from April 1969 - July 1970. I worked in Admin for a few months then worked at the C.P.O
club as an asst to the manager, Thanks to your site it brought back great memories, and got me in touch with an old friend whom I havn`t heard from since leaving there. hopefully well find the rest of them.
Leonard E. Leon.
POSTED: 11/27/04 @ 0800 hours
I was stationed at Port Lyautey from 1949 thru 1951. I was a mechanic for the JD1's. (Navy version of the A26)
POSTED: 11/24/04 @ 2300 hours
Some personal Kenitra and Medhia photos can be seen at adresse www.dartahouna.com
Cordialement, Best regards
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 11/24/04 @ 2300 hours
Joe Franzen here. I am trying to find out who was the CO of Navcomsta Morocco in 1963. Also, if anyone knows or knew Bill Bash (or Balank) who served at Sidi from 60-63 please contact me.
Please email at email@example.com
POSTED: 11/14/04 @ 1500 hours
You folks have put together a very nice site. Thank you for the memories that you have stirred up for me.
My father, LCDR Marcel Patras was the Security Office for the base from June 1958- June 1960. It was a wonderful two years for all of us, Dad, my Mother, Alice, brother Rick, and myself.
My brother and I attended Wilhoyt ES -- myself for 6th (Mr Byers) and 7th (Mrs. Stebbins)> I cant remember many of the folks by now. Lets see who I can remember:
Kenny & Becky Bragg offspring of Captain Bragg
Van Lingle CDR Van Lingle - Pilot
Andy Orange CDR Orange -Pilot
Herb Rand CDR Rand - Pilot
Andy Anderson LCDR Andy Anderson
Danny Broussard Parents were Civilians, I belive one/both were French.
Jim & Sheila Nellis MAJ Nellis
Mark Gouche CDR Gouche - Pilot
Daffney Horsewell CDR Horsewell, Mother was very upper-class Spaniard
Vicky Rose CPO Rose
Bunny Woodley N/A
Donna McNabb CPO McNabb
Bill (?) Buckley CDR Buckley
As I remember Bill Buckley won a prize in 1959/60. for naming the station theater. His suggestion was to name it after Admiral Halsey, who had just died.
We lived just a few Quonset huts down from the BOQ, on the same street as the "Water Tower". The Officers Club was just behind the neighbors across the street.
As I recall the O club had rooms that tired pilots used to stay in. We were pretty noisy kids, and often tired pilots would chastise us for disturbing their sleep. We tried to keep quiet, but would soon forget about the tired pilot that had just settled down after a long flight.
There was only one time that we were coerced into remaining quiet. We were playing next to the O Club about 1400 hrs, when a tired voice called down to us asking us to be quiet because he had been up since the day before and needed to sleep. As usual we were quiet for about 5 minutes before turning up our volume. This voice then called down again to us saying that if we did not quite down, he was going to come down and join us in playing hide and seek. For some reason, that struck a chord in us. We knew he was not going to do that, but he was trying to be a good sport and not lose his temper. We all agreed to move our game down the street although the best hiding places were by the Club.
The playground was next to the French Navy Mess. One day they butchered a pig during recess. It grossed us all out. The smell of the gutted pig persisted in the air for the next few weeks.
I used to hike with to Orange (accent on the second syllable) brothers down to the airfield, turn left and walk by the horse stables along the river, and on to the back gate. We stopped along the way to check out several planes sitting along the road that had burned or were just junked. Then we always stopped at the pistol ranges to collect spent bullets. This was almost next to the back gate. We were pretty tired by the time we got back home.
We used to play football on the field in front of the Oasis, next to the miniature golf course.
About twice a year us kids would descend on the Marine Barracks. I think they were just a block or two from the Oasis snack shop. We would beg for rank insignia, old caps etc from the Marines. I particularly liked talking with the Armorer. He had a lot of neat tools to play with. One Armorer tried to show me how to field strip a BAR. He had a very slow pupil though.
Does anyone remember the area of the base that was fenced off from the rest. Going from the Wilhoyt ES and HS, up the hill thru the Enlisted Married quarters, and by the Gym and Pool, continuing on off to the left there were some old buildings, and trenches etc. It was fenced off. My Dad said that it still had mines and other explosives in there from WWII that had not been removed. I sure wanted to sneak in and look around, but my father put the fear of god in me about that. I think he was reading my mind.
I could ramble on, but I think I am rapidly becoming verbally incontinent. A good time was had by all.
Please feel free to contact me if you were there in 1958-60 window.
19216 B Monastery Dr
Eagle River Alaska
POSTED: 11/06/04 @ 1300 hours
I was in the VR-6 detachment TAD to Shore Patrol. Wrestled with the motorbikes on Highway Patrol until circa 1952. Reading the email on this site Port Lyautey appeared to have changed consideraly over the years, not surprising though. What stays the same?
I don't know how many of the crew, Josh, Flippy, Bowser CWO Eggeling and the Mrs. are still around. It was a memorable tour. I can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Is anybody out there?
POSTED: 10/19/04 @ 1017 hours
First of all, I thank you for your wonderful website!!
My name is Anouar OUALI ALAMI, I'm Moroccan woman who have spend her childhood and teenage years in Kenitra (Portlyautey).
Now I'm living in Casablanca and my parents still live in Kenitra!!! I was searching in the web informations about the history about my town and I've found your website: http://www.portlyautey.com! it's realy incredible !!!
I was realy pleased to read the impression of the the U.S. Naval Airmen,U.S. Marines who served at the Naval Air Station In Kenitra , sidi yahia.........
I have a suggestion for you: it will be very interesting to organize a meeting in Kenitra, I can help you for this!!
What do you think??? Is that possible???
Anouar - e-mail: email@example.com
EDITORS NOTE: ANOUR RAISES AN INTERESTING POSSIBILITY, THAT OF HAVING A REUNION OF FORMER PORT LYAUTEY HANDS IN KENITRA. IF INTERESTED, PLEASE CONTACT ANOUR DIRECTLY AT THE E-MAIL ADDRESS ABOVE.
POSTED: 10/13/04 @ 0820 hours
I was a Chief Communications Technician stationed in Sidi Yahai from July 1957 through July 1960. My wife Joyce and I , along with our three children, thoroughly enjoyed our time there.
Sidney R. Maddux
CTC USN-Ret E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 10/10/04 @ 2015 hours
Thanks your for this site about my town
My name is Claude Malevergne. My father has piloted the "DALLAS" during Operation Torch. I have dedic ated a site to my father about this event in november 1942 : www.malevergne.free.fr
If somebody remember Mr René MALEVERGNE, please do not hesitate to contact me. For mémories , I went to "the Fleet" (american club) and I always remember the flavour of "Old Spice" that all americans put on. My father had a bar-snack-cabaret called "JACK BAR" in front of the market.
With my best regards
POSTED: 9/22/04 @ 0740 hours
Hi Lou, I just discovered your site this AM. My name is Don Raynor. I was stationed in Kenitra, when it was U.S.N.T.C., March 1967 thru August 1969. I was in special services and was the base Athletic Director. I worked up at the gym by the hilside club. I was a BM1 at the time and it was the best tour I had in my 21 years of naval service. Some of the names I remember from my years there are Bmc Fowler, who I worked for, LCDR Stoffel who was SS officer and also flew the C 47 mail plane back and forth between Kenitra and Rota, ENS. Little, who was called ENS. SCHWEEYA by my Moroccan friends, Ben Ali from the golf course(I visited him in Rabat in 1999), Driss from the bowling alley, Richard(Moroccan)from the gym, Chief Bill Thorne(PW), SH1 Gene Barnett(Great Golfer,now diceased), and too many others to mention. One of my hangouts during my tour there was the bar in the Hotel Rotonde. The bar tenders name was Lacen, but everyone called him Sou-Sou. He started tending bar in there in1953, Onmy last visit to Kenitra (May 2004), Sou -Sou was still tending bar there and the bar is now properly called "Bar Sou Sou" in the hotel Rotonde. I normalley stay at the Hotel Mamora when I visit. My next trip will be in the winter of 2005-2006, god willing.
BMC Donald W.Raynor U.S.N. Ret., email@example.com
POSTED: 9/14/04 @ 2300 hours
I see some familiar names on the site, but at my age I can't put a face with them. I was in VR-24 from March 1956 to December 1957, and I was in line crew, power plants and Base MAA. I appreciate your site very much, thanks.
Scott Mayfield AD1 USN Ret.- E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 9/13/04 @ 2230 hours
It seem that my 1st message does not arrive.
I am a french boy, born in Port_Lyautey in 1942, and my father had a job in the Navy as interpreter, his name was David Elmaleh, quite small and very white hair.,he worked for 15 years for the Navy. When I was 14/16, I allways listen to the Navy radio broadcasting, and we, here, in Port_lyautey, knew Bill Haley, Elvis, PaulAnka, The Platters etc...before the europeens.Also i remenber the donuts that my father had in the supply, and someone remenber the Eldorado milk bar, named on the Uss Eldorado, created by mr Broussard who married a french girl like a lot of you lucky men...The best hambergers and pancakes of the atlantic coast!!!
Sometimes we had basket-ball against the Navy team, and to play in your covered hall, was tremendous, because we used to play on open sky field.
We have a society of people living formely in Port-Lyautey, web site, http://gharbaoui.free.fr. Please excuse my very bad english. Best regards and thanks to you for what you did in those times.
cami del col 5
08870 Sitges (Spain)
e-mail : email@example.com
POSTED: 9/08/04 @ 2230 hours
I obtained this address from the http://www.vpnavy.org/nascorry_history.html page while searching for information on my Father. He was James (Jim) Moody, some called him "Moon". He was stationed at Corry twice, the last time leaving around 1954, 1955 when he went to Pax River. He flew as a crewmember (observer) in PBY's on SARs. I am trying to find info about him, and about the squadron for the PBYs. I am building a model (4 foot span) of the Cat. and want it to be authentic for Corry during that time. If I can do a good enough job, I want to donate it to the museum at NAS Pensacola in his name. Any help, data, photos or others that may have info would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks, and God bless.
DWAS Project Office
POSTED: 9/08/04 @ 2230 hours
Thanks for this great site. I've been reading it for the past two years but never got up the gumption to send a message before.
I was a member of the 2nd Guard Company at Sidi Yahia from the autumn of 1956 to the spring of 1958. How well I remember that semi-secluded outpost. I swore that when I left I would never give it another thought. Wrong!
Over the years I've given many moments to reflection on the people and events that took place during my summer years. Many of the names and particulars are as sharp today as if they had just happened lat week. Those miserable cold nights patrolling the antenna fields during rainy season still give me a chill. The dirty tricks that we played on the gobs next door to
our barracks still make me smile - guiltily.
I would love to hear hear from any of the guys that were there in those more innocent years.
Richard Ouellet - E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 9/01/04 @ 0715 hours
Dears Friends of the website portlyautey.com,
I want to congratulate you for your wonderful site. I arrived at Port-Lyautey, in 1939. I was just two years old and stay in this town till October 28,1965, the very day I leave it to Bordeaux in France. Now, I live in Israel, since 1967. I remember very well the day, perhaps November 10, 1942, when the American troops landed in Port-Lyautey. I was just five and half years old. My father said to us the children, that we have to stay home and never go out. We sat down under the table of the living room, my mother, I, my two sisters, and my little brother. We heard clearly outside, the buzzing of the american air planes, and the sound of the machine guns fighting against the French forces of Vichy.
The day after I dared to go out by myself. Two blocks away of my house I came accross an American tank. It was the first time in my life I saw an engine of this kind. I turn around the tank a little bit afraid. An American soldier welcome me very friendly and seeing I was very interested by the tank lift me up like a feather and put me inside the tank through the turret. Inside, all was white. I was astonishing.
Three days later the American troops made a great parade in the main street of our town, avenue de Fes. The American GI's trew to us the children, from their GMC trucks, their iron rations. For the first time in my life I taste chocolat. I remember the name of the cholcolat bar, Hershey's perhaps. The American, were for us, really, liberators. We were so happy, us the Jews particularly, after the stern period of Vichy Government.
Later the Americans built a Navy Air base and within a short time, were a part of our life in Port-Lyautey. Thanks to the American the town began to revive. My mother earn her life by doing the laundry for the American sailors. They were very kind to us the children and gave us chewing gums, and candies. In the town they went to the night-clubs Le Chalet, La Mama, l'Arraignee. During the nights there were evertime the jeeps of the Shore Patrol, roaming the streets. The military police men were watching that the GI's beheave well toward the local inhabitants. Because sometime, the GI's were drunk and often had a fight with others people.
I have visited the American Navy base, invited by American pupils of the school, inside the base. We sometime make purchases in the P.X. The base inside was built like a American town, the side-walk, were in concrete, the streets were very clean. The barracks and the houses of the American families were pretty and always, green lawns and flowers all around. It was very beautiful, to see places so well kepted, not so far the place I lived.
In the American base, was a Radio-Station, and my friends and I were very fond to hear American tunes, rock'n roll especially. The American introduced in our way of life a very new style of living, about the food, the way of wearing, the famous T.shirts. It was so pleasant to live in a little area, Frenchs, Americans, Moroccans, in the general good harmony. I have never found it again.
These were my souvenirs of this wonderful time. Sorry for my poor english.
David Cohen, POB 506, 59104 Bat-Yam, Israel, wednesday September 1st, 2004. e-mail: email@example.com
POSTED: 8/31/04 @ 1040 hours
Greetings To all my old Kenitra shipmates.
I was stationed at USNTC Kenitra, Morocco in 1975 until the end in 1979. I was one of the last people to leave the country. Kenitra was my first duty station and my favorite by far. I was a young kid fresh out of the mountains of NC. And life was GOOD! I remember Pat Weil and the beach and that jeep that he drove. I got into a lot of trouble in Kenitra and loved every second of it. In those days the town was wild with a excess of everything that a young sailor would like. I worked for ABHC Bob Faught at the Transiuent Line/Crash Crew/Air Cargo/Air Terminal. We had a crew of about seven people and had to be some of the hardest workers on base. Us AB's did it all! I have fond memories of the bars in town ie: 007, Chateau and a few more that I don't want to mention. Yes and I also remember my Moroccan friends there. There was a Lt. in the PG (under-cover police) that I got along well with. We had some great times. I plan to go back there sometime soon. Anyone who remembers me or was there during my tour can contact me at; Sibeatle2000@yahoo.com
Thanks and Fair Winds to all.
POSTED: 8/31/04 @ 0815 hours
Hello Lou, duty 1957-1958 was MR3 IN machine shop service to all squadrons. Leading chief name MRC Hulse very busy shop. our CDR was L.W. Bunce also AOC Wilson. Our aircraft was R4D aircraft many flights to the Mediterranean. Wonderful experience please place me on guest list MRC Roy Tringali e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 8/30/04 @ 0635 hours
My dads ship the LST 880 visited the Port in 1952. Hes deceased now, but I have become interested in his years in the navy. I may have some photos of his time in the Port. If so I will email them to you. Thanks for your work on this site. I have a greater understanding and appreciation of his time in North Africa.
Kurt Kragness ---email: email@example.com
POSTED: 8/21/04 @ 0600 hours
I collect coins for a hobby and realized that I have a Naval exchange token from Port Lyautey. This caused me to look up the History of this Naval Base and I am delighted as to what I discovered. I am a veteran of the U.S. Air Force and would appreciate any info on this token that I could get.
POSTED: 8/16/04 @ 1215 hours
Was sentry dog handler in Bouk 73 /74 would love to here from anybody station there at same time.
POSTED: 8/10/04 @ 0840 hours
Does anyone have pictures of Bouknadel Beach they can share over the internet? I lived in Rabat and Port Lyautey in 1954-56 and Bouknadel Beach seems like a beautiful dream to me....Did it really exist? I would be so grateful to see a picture of it again. Bobbie Zilius
POSTED: 7/28/04 @ 0840 hours
Hello, my name is George Sutherland and was an AG3 at the Fleet Weather Central from September 1953 until October 1954. It sure was a busy 13 months. Richard Dionne was a boot camp buddy who wound up with VW-2 in Port Lyautey. While there we had a number of (mis)adventures. I did catch up with Dick about 2 weeks ago. However, I have wondered about some of the guys I was with at the FWC, like George Paul, Roger Squire, Bobby Weaver, Leo Kane, "Red" Morrison, Robby Robinson and others whose names escape me. Leo and I did Rabat together as as well as going up in the TBM-3 piloted by LT. Farmer. Bill DeHarde, Robby Robinson and I made the trip to Fez. I caught up with Bill last year on the internet. Norman Orr and I darned near drowned one day out at the beach, but everything turned out OK thanks to the Navy and native life guards. I did the Europe trip solo going to Naples, Paris, Amsterdam and Copenhagen, then catching an Air Force hop to England and then a train to northern Scotland to visit with aunts, uncles and cousins. back down to London for a few days and then the return trip to Port Lyautey. Duty at FWC had to be one of the best slots in the Navy at that time. The "open gangway" liberty pass sure did not do any harm either.
I would like to hear from any of the guys above or for that matter anyone who was in the FWC during that time. Please E-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 7/22/04 @ 0915 hours
My name is Willard Johnston, and I was stationed at Port Lyautey with VQ-2 from April '56 to Nov. '57. I was 17 when I arrived there, and I thoroughly enjoyed my tour of duty. Met many great folks, enjoyed a lot of hospitality from business folks in town, and had a great time sight-seeing around the country. I worked in Air Frames and also spent some time taking care of the aircraft logs in the Maintenance Office. Anyone remembering me can contact me at email@example.com I would be happy to hear from anyone that was in the squadron during that time. I am planning on being at the VQ Reunion in Memphis, TN in October, from the 7th thru the 10th. Great websight, I enjoyed browsing thru.
POSTED: 7/20/04 @ 1435 hours
My name is John Stonesifer. Thanks for the job you are doing for all to remember the memorable days at Pt. Lyautey. I was informed about the site by a friend and former AG, Bob Wilson. During the early 50s we were assigned to the Fleet Weather Center and our original offices were in the old French hangar usually filled with old Lancasters and crawling with mechanics.
Bob and I plus other AGs could usually be seen launching the weather balloons from that shack up on the hill near the golf course. (Wasn¹t that an experience - those sand greens ?). A few of us and some friends from the contractor groups joined up for motorcycle rides covering much of North Africa. The ride to Tangier was an obstacle course dodging the pot holes.
The rides over the Atlas mountains were filled with switch backs and plenty of dust.
During my time there I became a member of the Pt. Lyautey city track team. I threw the javelin, eventually winning the N. African championship while competing against other city teams and Air Force teams. Athletic events on the base were always a big morale booster - basketball, fast pitch softball and flag football. Competition was always fierce against the Marines and
Several years ago I had an opportunity to briefly visit the city again. How it has grown! Traffic, large buildings and crowded sidewalks. Took some pictures of Mama¹s place, the old familiar train station and the Main gate. On the way to Mehdia beach I passed a beautiful golf course. Very surprising was to see the beautiful countryside between Pt Lyautey and Rabat now solid with settlements, houses and buildings. Pt. Lyautey was good duty and we all remember the opportunities to catch flights to Europe and see the sites.
POSTED: 7/20/04 @ 1435 hours
My name is Ray Sapriel, I am sure that a lot of you guys bought or sold a car from my place of business located at the Esso Building facing USNTC Kenitra. There is a particular Ist class named Hughts that traded his Lotus sports car for an ASTON MARTIN DB 5- I956 that I bought from King Hassan the II. That lucky seaman paid me $1500 plus his old car, if that man still owns that car,I'll buy it back for 50 times what he paid me for it plus.
Otherwise I made a lot of you guys happy and others hated me like any ordinary car dealer, but I still love you all.I am 78 years old and retired living in Paris France would certainly appreciate any word from any of you.
Ray - email: firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 7/19/04 @ 1210 hours
Mike Carey stationed in Sidi Yahia nov 71 to mar 75. Every time I hear the word Morocco it conjurs up in my mind the taste of wine and coke, casa sports ( got to be the strongest, and worst smellin cigs I ever smoked) brochetts cooking , and couscous and tagine . The open food markets, mingled with the donkey carts and every day life downtown a very truly wonderful and remarkable tour of duty that I have ever experienced in my military life. I can still after all these years just saying morocco taste and feel and experience a great duty station and people. most all people I have met there were super nice. I was stationed at the galley at the time . CS-2 had a country western band played in Kenitra, and at the Embassy, few times in Rabat. played softball, enjoyed many, many too many happy hours at the club. my email address is MPCarey820@msn.com. would like to hear from some of the old gang. Thanks for letting me share a few memories. Great web site.
POSTED: 7/15/04 @ 2220 hours
Hi & "Labess",
Great site. Served at 2nd Guard Co. in 61 & 62 as a "dog sentry". Had some good times with great buddies.
Would like to hear from any of them.
Jim Zientek - email@example.com
POSTED: 7/15/04 @ 1230 hours
My name is Robert (Bob) Howe. I was in Port Lyautey as a radioman from mid year 1942 to July 1945. Worked upstairs in the hanger and lived in a quonset hut on top of "the hill". I sure would like to hear from some of the guys. And I would love to see some more recent photos than my sixty years old ones. My e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 7/15/04 @ 1100 hours
I was stationed at Port Lyautey Kenitra Morocco from 1961 to 1962 (18 months total). I worked for Military Air Transport Service (M.A.T.S.) as a Customer Service Rep and also as a Baggage Handler and Airplane Handler. I was a Seaman Apprentice (Navy).
The following names come to mind:
Master Chief Hurl
Robert S. Norton
Jack Webb (not the actor)
POSTED: 6/29/04 @ 0600 hours
Was at Sidi Yahia 6/76-10/77..Many great memories and too many friends forgotten now..Was a Corporal (Cpl Peter D. Johnpeer) at the Marine Barracks there. Nicknamed "Chesty" by the rest of the detachment..Would love to hear about the whereabouts of SSgt Ronald Kent and Cpl Edbert Kollar (my Room mate)..will never forget "Chevy"(my houseboy and "Mohammed" My other houseboy..I was the ending president at the Sidi Yahia Rod and Gun Club..I will never forget the day that I was sent to the Air base at Torrejon Spain to get items for the damn IG inspection they decided to have (the base was well into the closure phase at this point)..I had a folding suitcase full of "T"shirts ,underwear,socks etc. along with a car radio for someone at Sidi..well don't ya know it was the ONLY damn time while there that I did not get a customs pass to get from Kenitra to Sidi on the bus and don't ya know it was the only time there that a gate guard (Moroccan) boarded a bus I was on while I was there..It cost the U.S. Government 2 large bottles of Chevis Regal to get my a*% out of trouble..I really loved it there tho..Thanks for the chance to ramble on..Peter Johnpeer.
POSTED: 6/14/04 @ 1300 hours
Thanks so much for this great web-site. I am Bill Johnson and was a CT3 stationed at the Naval Security Station in Port Lyautey from Sept. 1951 - Jan. 1953., and remember fondly my shipmates and my great tour of duty there - as
stated by so many others who were fortunate to have had tours of duty there. I am interested in hearing from anyone who may have been there at that time. I remember working with Lt. Stalter, Lt. Robert Marmet and enlisted men John Powers from Pennsylvania, Billy Green from California, Joe Jones from Kentucky, Chief Boaz, John Goodman - his wife was from Ottumwa, Iowa and others Dutton, Rankin.
I would really enjoy hearing about John Powers and Billy Green who traveled with me on on a tour of Europe ending up with a visit to my uncle in Kvapa Oxaback Sweden.as well as anyone else. You can reach me at: email@example.com.
Thanks so much.
POSTED: 6/05/04 @ 0915 hours
Hi my name Ciro Farina. I was stationed in Kenitra in 1969 - 1970. Looking for anyone there at that time. Here are some names that come to mind, Don (Max) Smart, James (Bones) Horst, Jay Pyle, Dave Otter, Larry S Franklin, Jerry Giles, Sonny Foster, Terry Andress, Eric (Pete) Pedersen, King O Smith, Pete Kahil. Please E-Mail Me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I would to love here from any of you. Anyone that knows how to make Brochetts please contact me, they were so good any
time day of night. What a great duty station, I loved being there.
Char and Ciro
POSTED: 6/03/04 @ 2230 hours
My dad, Donald Heberling, was a PB4Y pilot in 1950 stationed at Port Lyautey. He was scheduled to fly on the recon flight that was shot down by Migs in April 1950. A fellow pilot volunteered to take his place as it would mean Dad would be away from his family on Easter. I'll be forever grateful to that volunteer, I wish I knew which of the crew listed as missing he was. Because I would not be here today...
Don passed away in November of 2003, we heard this story at his funeral mass.
POSTED: 5/19/04 @ 1315 hours
Cpl of the Guard at Bouknadel 1964/1965. Frank Clark Cpl at the time Anyone during this period please drop a line.
POSTED: 5/19/04 @ 1315 hours
I've seen your website with the pictures of Kenitra in the 50's and 60's. I'm a boy from the Netherlands and my parent's were born in Kenitra in 1946 and 1947. My roots are in Kenitra and every year I go there and I live in a new neighborhood next to the base.
Bye and I hope you will send me something back and if you got more picturex send them please.
Adil - email email@example.com
POSTED: 5/11/04 @ 2240 hours
Hello shipmates - I reported to NCS Sidi Yahia as a CYN in early 1971 and departed an RM2 in 1973. If memory serves me correctly, I started out in the fleet center and moved into the basement, CAMS. Sidi Yahia was my first duty station after joining the Navy and spending most of 1970 in school. I went on to complete 30 years service and retired as an ITCM in Jan 2000. I must say that this site and the many guest book entries brought back long forgotten times. I enjoyed duty there. Hawes Amos - email: firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 5/11/04 @ 2240 hours
Looking for LC CLAY George ( Mat 1872147 ) who was stationed in Port Lyautey around 60/62.Anybody would have some news? Herve DUPLAINE - email: email@example.com
POSTED: 5/10/04 @ 0430 hours
I would be very interested to see a photograph of Kenitra Prison in 1941 - 42. Please can you let me know if anyone has submitted one. My father was incarcerated there by the Vichy French because he wanted to join The British and De Gaulle.
Jacqui (UK) e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 5/09/04 @ 0630 hours
My name is Walter Owsiany CN 4632864. I was in Port Lyautey from 1957 to 1959. A great duty station. Made many friends. I am glad that Lou put this web site together as I have often wonder what happen to all the great guys I served with. Keep up the great work.
POSTED: 5/02/04 @ 0510 hours
I was a PR3 in VAH-11 and had an opportunity to do a short assignment in Lyautey in early 1957, ah those were the days.
Thomas O. Zahay - Gilbert, AZ. e-mail: email@example.com
POSTED: 4/28/04 @ 0140 hours
What a wonderful site!
My father was stationed at Sidi Yahia with the base power plant from 1961 - 1963. CWO Wayne E. Myers and his wife Lois, and me- daughter Holly. My parents loved the slow pace of the Navy in Morocco and the weekly parties with all the other young officers and wives. For the rest of their lives, they looked back on those years as their happiest ever.
I laugh when I remember those years- and cry too. Several students were exposed to tuberculosis when the biology
teacher disected a cow bought at the local market!
I still have the hand knotted rugs made up in the mountains and cook over the Moroccan utensils. Does anyone else think it interesting how popular everything Moroccan is today? including instant cous cous? I read one teenagers memory of the kind military police... I remember the patient disc jockeys at the radio station and all the great music they played.
The scariest experience I had was when I babysat one July 4 - the fatima from next door came over very frightened to say there was a big snake in the bedroom. I went over and there was a giant coiled cobra! Another neighbor hit it with a big stick.... crash! it broke into hundreds of tiny ceramic pieces!
I wish you all well!
Holly Harder - e-mial: firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 4/20/04 @ 2245 hours
I noticed in your listing of squadrons that had been stationed at Port Lyautey VP7 was not listed. You listed a "VC" 7 but that was not us. I was discharged from the Navy in October 1954 and the next upcoming deployment of my squadron (VP7) was to Port Lyautey in January 1955. I, of course, didn't make the deployment, but I have a number of friends who did and they have shared memories and photographs. Please add VP 7 to your list.
Bob Culpepper, former AL2, VP7 - e-mail: email@example.com
POSTED: 4/19/04 @ 1500 hours
I just discovered this site. I was stationed at Port Lyautey with VW2 Det.A from about June of 1953 until about October of 1954. I have very fond memories of the base and the surrounding area. I remember the time when the French deported Sidi Mohamed Ben Yousef and the base was under siege and we had dependants living in the barracks, etc.
VW2 Det.A was commanded by Cdr. Robert Sparks. I recall he and the other officers of the squadron with admiration. At the time, I was an AF striker and worked in the flight operations office.
I also remember the Enlisted Club located in town. What a busy place. Does anyone recall the surprise "script change" that took place probably in early 1954.
I have photographs that I will share with anyone interested and I would like to receive same. Hoping to hear from someone sharing my thoughts.
Richard A Dionne
POSTED: 4/14/04 @ 2240 hours
I lived and worked on Nouasseur Air Base in 1962 and 1963. Every chance I got I flew out of there to Spain, or I'd book myself out of Pt. Lyautey to Italy It was wonderful to be a young, supposedly rich American out to see the world.
The first time I was at PtL, I had to stay the night in the Transient Qtrs. I'll never forget my shock when the man at the desk said, "Go up the ladder...." I actually looked for a ladder, not the stairs. So much for being brilliant and sophisticated.
Thanks to our U. S. Navy and its fabulous people, both then and now. I'm proud to say here I am, 40 years later, married to a fine man whose Navy career was spent in submarines.
Patricia Rupert Geister
POSTED: 4/13/04 @ 2230 hours
Well this is an interesting web site for Port Lyautey folks... Thanks for putting in the time to make it a collection point
for old memories...
Since this is more oriented towards military personnel, then as a Navy Brat I would like to say a few things about my experiences and interaction with the support people on the base.
My Dad, LCDR John D Bernard was the Industrial Relations Officer from late 58 - to late 61...and I attended Thomas Mack Wilhoite from 8th grade to 10th grade... Dad took over from Leo Culjat whose daughter Dorothy left a post in 2003 here. Dad is still retired in Toledo Bend Texas [age 87] and has some smoking/asbestos related health problems...
My name is also John D Bernard, 58, and my life at the Naval Air Station helped shape me into an instructor teaching at Tri-County Technical College in computing. Like everyone else I always wanted to go back stateside, but later realized that this was a fun, exciting three years of my life.
First, I need to thank the Shore Patrol guys who stopped me at night at a 4 way stop to tell me that my lights on the Lambretta were not on... They were not on because I had to roll the scooter dowm the hill [at age 12] to start it so my Dad would not know that I was joy riding his "go to work" vehicle...If they had asked me for a license or took me back to the house I would not be alive today.
Second, I would like to thank the VP-16 pilots who would fly me to ROTA in their P2Vs on Saturday mornings... AND for bringing me back... It was interesting to me because I would bike down to the terminal/flight room where the pilots went in
and out, tell them that I was LCDR Bernard's son and beg for a ride to ROTA... most said no, but there was always one... If my parents knew that I was out of the country for the day... again I would not be alive today.
Third, there was Gallagher at the stables... for 50 cents he would saddle up the meanest Arabian Stallions for my brother Mike and I, and wish us good luck... we rarely made it out of the stable yard... as my horse would jump on Mike's horse
or throw us though/over the fence... I think Gallagher had a sense of humor... he always offered us the brown horses but Mike and I would not have any part of it.
Fourth, and the Torrejon telephone operator... After climbing on the water tower at night by the basehospital, there was this lone, mysterious telephone. Picking up the receiver connected me to the Torrejon operator who would put me through to my friends who had gone back stateside or to my friends in Charleston, SC...
Most remember the Oasis, Johnny Horton's Battle of New Orleans on the Jukebox, the Teen Club, the inter-service football and baseball games, special services, etc... but the people make up life at a base, and the people were good people at Port Lyautey.
John D Bernard, EdD
POSTED: 3/28/04 @ 1400 hours
Hi Lou, thanks for the wonderful website, I just found it...I have a lot of fond memories there.. Brings back old and precious memories. I was there right out of bootcamp from 1951 to 1953, and it was the best duty I can remember. I was attached to FASRON 104, near the main hanger, where the french use to put those huge Lancaster bombers. I started out as plane captain on a F9F Panther, and after taking and passing the test, got to be a navy photographer and was assigned to the NAS Photolab, where I spent the rest of my time,
I see that there was another shipmate stationed at the photolab, but in different years, I'll try to get ahold of him....meanwhile, for anyone that might have been attached to FASRON 104, please get in touch.
My name is George Chayko and my email address is.......firstname.lastname@example.org...thanks very much lou, and thanks for bringing back those wonderful memories.....
POSTED: 3/20/04 @ 2000 hours
Once again, I would like to repeat the word that I have passed each of the past couple of years around this time concerning the VQ-2 Fiftieth Anniversary next September (2005). About twenty of us who were "present at the creation" of the squadron in Port Lyautey on September 1st, 1955 are shaking trees and turning over rocks in a serious effort to contact as many living "plankowners" as we can. Our original idea was to honor the squadron (now in Rota, as many of you know) for 50 years of dangerous and valuable service to our country. In the process, as we have made contact and traded recollections, we have all profited from remembering the good (and bad) times we had together in, first, VW-2A (Airborne Early Warning Squadron TWO, Detachment ABLE) and Naval Communications Unit 32G, then in Electronic Countermeasures Squadron TWO (as VQ-2 was originally called) when it was commissioned by combining the two units in one command. There were about 5 officers and 20 enlisted in the CommUnit, and about 19 officers and 80 enlisted in Detachment Able. In my case, I had about four full years in Port Lyautey (starting a "fresh" tour on commissioning of the squadron) and lived first in Bir Rami out in the boonies and then on the base for the final year. My daughter was the first child born in the new squadron on 9/11/55 so she's eleven days younger than the unit. How time flies!
If anyone reading this knows - or is in contact with - anyone who was a VQ-2 squadron plankowner who has not checked in with me by e-mail at Bravoz@columbus.rr.com, please spread the word so we can do this thing right. In the meantime, our thanks to Lou and all the other folks in the Guestbook who have helped us get as far as we have. We're no spring chickens, as you may imagine...two are over 90 and very much "with" it! Thanks in advance!
The Last Boomerang
A Novel of the Cold War
ISBN 1-4107-9876-3 (paper) -5 (cloth)
Available at 1stBooks, B&N, Amazon and ISBN.com websites
or at 1-888-280-7715
POSTED: 3/01/04 @ 0900 hours
My name is Robert Clinton and I was stationed at French Morocco from '57 to '59 at Sidi Yahia and Sidi Bouknadel as a marine Pvt.and Pfc. with a military police company. My last few months was at (Bouk) and was in charge of the four german shepherds used with the marine security outfit, protecting the Navy communications buildings and areas. At age 18,I was fortunate enough to visit Port Lyautey, Agadir, Rabat, Fez, Casablanca, Sidi Slimane(where there was a vet for the military dogs) and a lot of bars. It was a long time,ago, but I will never forget any of it in my young yeas. If anybody remembers, contact me at email@example.com.
POSTED: 3/01/04 @ 0900 hours
Great web-site! Brings back memories of my Turnaround flight there in late 1944.
I was Flight-Mech. on a VR-1 R5-D routine flight from NAS Patuxent River MD, USA, to Lyauty and return. So we were there only long enough to unload, get some lunch ( Red-hot chili beans, on a red hot day, in a canvas mess tent! ) reload, and take off again for the return flight via The Azores and Argentia, Newfoudland.
About all I remember about the base was the view as we were landing and taking off! It still was a memorable trip, as it was my first as a Flight-mech, and my first and only visit ( if I dare call it that! ) to Africa! I'm glad to have some pictures and information about the base. Soon after that I was transferred to NAS Honolulu for six months of rugged (???) duty before THE BOMBS hit Japan and most of us were sent
"Thanks For The Memory" and good luck to you all!
Bob May, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 2/28/04 @ 2145 hours
jerry g kelley ae-2 vc-5 completed two six month deployments at port lyautey between 09.1952 and 04.1955. reported to john bayko. all concerned are invited to contact me as follows:109 patrick mill circle, ponte vedra beach fl 32082 or cell 904 610 2149 or email@example.com
great people. wonderful memories. let's have a reunion!
POSTED: 2/25/04 @ 0615 hours
I Was a member of VP 24 Based in Pax River in 1953 and Chincoteague VA till 1956. During this period we went to Port Lyautey at least once. the other oversea deployments being Malta and Argentia Newfoundland. I was a AT-3 and AT-2 with duty in the Shop In Avionics repair. I don't remember alot about Port Lyautey. I do remember my watch duty when I was assigned to shore patrol. The Old salts on permanet duty told stories about patrols that where lost in Rabator Casa and beat up by the locals. I don't think this was too true. Really glad to have run across your website and trank you for the work involved in having it. My name is Thomas Shipp and live in Arlington VA now. I am 70 so you see what a youngster I was in 53 and 56. Would Like to hear from anyone. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org Thanks again for all the good work Take care, Tom.
POSTED: 2/10/04 @ 0540 hours
I was stationed at Sidi Yahia as a CTA1 from 1970-72. We lived on the economy in Kenitra on Rue Ichbilya (probably spelled wrong). We loved our tour there and travelled extensively - Fez, Meknes, Ifrane, Azrou, Marrakesh and much of the southern area. Many great shipmates - Paul Harraidine, John Harrison, Mike Fewell, Mike Redick, Fred Keck, Dave Fritz, Jack Lutes and many others. I was active in officiating sports both on and off the base. Referred basketball with Amin Joudar (civilian interperter at the US Embassy) with Moroccan teams. Interesting experience. When I returned on leave in Dec 1980 I visited him in Rabat and from there traveled to southern Morocco. When I came back through Rabat to see him again two weeks later, he vanished. Even the people at the embassey could not tell me what happened to him. His wife was an American school teacher Doris Joudar. They might have returned to the U.S. If anyone has any idea what happened to them, I would appreciate it if you would contact me.
I went back to Morocco while stationed in Naples in Dec 80 for three weeks. While there we had a chance to visit again with Joudar and his wife Doris who was an American school teacher. While we were there they hastily departed Morocco. Does anyone know where they are now? We had a great houseboy Larabie who we again reunited with in 1980. Last known was he was married with 3 children and on his own farm out passed Sidi Slimane. The Moroccan people were so friendly. I cheerish my memories of this wonderful country. Hope to get back again.
Does anyone know of a former military base in Morocco called either Boulow" or "Bouthaut AB". I believe it was in southern Morocco and was there during the 50"s. Any information on this base would be appreciated.
Norm Landino - Bridgewater, MA - welcome communications - my e-mail address is - email@example.com
POSTED: 2/08/04 @ 0530 hours
My father, who died in 1958, was a pilot with VPB-63...I'm just now finding out about his military deployments as I found old pictures of his squadrom mates. His name was Roderick Scott McCrae, CAP. Does anyone remember him?
Michael R. McCrae, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 2/05/04 @ 1100 hours
I was assigned to VF33 which was on a Med Cruise aboard the Lake Champlain in the fall of 1955. The FJ3 aircraft the squadron was flying had a Curtis Wright engine which was designed to burn JP4 jet fuel, the Lake Champlain had no fuel tanks that did not use water to pump the fuel. JP4 is contaminated by water. So someone came up with the idea of mixing aviation gasoline with fuel oil to substitute for JP4. We went aboard the ship in early August and operated off the coast of Florida for about two weeks before starting our Atlantic crossing. During the crossing we had a plane that was due for a major engine check, during this check it was discovered that the tubes that sprayed fuel into the combustion area had been badly damaged by excess heat. When the ship reached Gibraltar the plane was transferred to Port Lyautey to await a redesigned engine from Curtis Wright. We were there from mid Sept. 1955 to mid Jan 1956.I vividly remember the rainy season when the Snails came out.
Milton "Doc" Lehman, e-mail: Miltlehman@aol.com
POSTED: 1/31/04 @ 1100 hours
I was stationed and Port Lyuatey from from '60 - '62. I was in the Airframes shop at NAS. I was an airman and left as a AMS3. I played tackle football on Capt. McCurtains Hilltoppers. Who could forget all the great bars for single guys to hang out in and don't forget about the places in Rabat. A lot of great memories there. While station in VQ-2 in Rota I got a chance to go back there and play racquetball for a few days. It was good going by all the old hangouts. Yes, a good tour for me. I retired in '79 and a AMCS and now live in Maritta Georgia. Would like to hear from anyone who remembers me.
Tom Michael at email@example.com
POSTED: 1/30/04 @ 0600 hours
Just got the newsletter from Pete Owen about the VR24 reunion in San Diego. He mentioned your website. We were in NAS Port Lyautey from Dec 1958 untill July 4th, 1961. Wonderfull.
Best to all.
Harvey and Jan Benefield
POSTED: 1/30/04 @ 0600 hours
Looks like we've got a great web-site going here!! I'm Fred Smith was a ADR3,while stationed at Port Lyuatey in VR-24, from DEC. 55 TO JUL 57. Worked over at the Flogwing Terminal, in Space Control, also helped out in Air Fright. Did a little flying when I could as a Flt. Orderly/Loadmaster. It was a great 18 months! As I read some of the other listing, it brought back fond memories!! Keep up the good work!
e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org Would like to hear from anyone who remenbers me.
POSTED: 1/30/04 @ 0800 hours
Maury Dumas here. Served at Port Lyauter in '55 and '56. Was an AG2 and the wife taught school at the dependents school on base. Managed the AFRS radio station, WNAF for a little over a year and called bingo at the EM club during my entire tour. Discharged from the USN, went back to school, accepted to Coast Guard OCS and retired in '86 as a Captain. Would love to hear from anyone I served with back then. Give a yell. Would especially like to hear from Tony Morascini, "Spec" Evans, Chet Tworzinski (sp?) or Don Thomkins. Now living in Boston, MA. area.
POSTED: 1/28/04 @ 0830 hours
My name is Jack Hassinger. I was in VR24 and stationed in Port Lyautey from 1949 until April 1951 when I was transferred to VR24 Headquarters in London.I was a AM3 when I arrived in Port Lyautey and left as second class. I had great shipmates who lived in the Quonset Hut with me. I enjoyed the sand green golf course, the liberty around Port Lyautey especially the koshea races on Sunday from the train station to the square. Went to Rabat many times also Casablanca. I got Hepatitis A while I was there and that wasn't very pleasant. My email address is email@example.com I would be
happy to here from anyone who can remember those times.
POSTED: 1/27/04 @ 0600 hours
I was stationed at Pt. Lyautey after finishing AG school in Lakehurst. Was there in 1957-58 and worked in radio/teletype room. A very enjoyable tour and would interested in finding anyone there during that time, especially Harvey Whitesides.
US Army Retired
POSTED: 1/20/04 @ 1700 hours
What a surprise to find this website. I spent '53, '54 and part of '55 in Port Lyautey and Sidi Yahia. Was there during the revolt to gain their independence from France. Also went through the locust storm of '54. Worked in the radio/teletype communication center. Would love to hear news of some of the "old " guys. George O'Sullivan, Louie Fields, Willie Widener, Don Fergurson, Nap Napolitano. Contact me Richard [Dick] Owens at firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 1/20/04 @ 1700 hours
While writing about my Navy Days, I decided to search for Info on Port Lyautey and found your web site. Although I was not stationed at Port Lyautey, I was in transit to find my ship already in the Med and was dropped off in Port Lyautey in Dec. 1959, for a few days. I was fresh out of ET school and never before out of the states; this was an exotic place to be, especially after leaving my home in upstate New York in December. When I arrived in Port Lyautey, I met up with a fellow that I had known in ET school, who had been stationed there; he showed me the city of Kenitra and what a time we had. I won't go into detail here. I remember the friendlineness of the men I met there and wondered if it would be like that on my ship that I was going to. Unfortunately my stay there was only for about 4 days and I never returned, but I still think of my brief stay in this "exotic" place. I went on to Naples from there and eventually went aboard my ship in Genoa. For this young sailor, I was accomplishing what I had set out to do; see the world. I became part of ship's company of the USS Monrovia APA31, Amphibious Squadron Six.
You have a great web site!!
POSTED: 1/16/04 @ 0430 hours
Dear Port Lyautey.com,
What a surprise to find you on the internet! I never even thought to look for a website on Port Lyautey. (They changed the name to Kenitra in 1956, I believe, just before my father was transferred stateside.) Yesterday I was looking for a new name to use on the internet, and I thought of Bouknadel--which was my favorite beach back then. And lo and behold, the name, Bouknadel was already taken! Did someone else in the wide world know about Bouknadel? I was intrigued. I started my search, and your website is the first one that came up.
I can only speak as the child I was back then, but the time in Morocco was the happiest time for my brother and me in our childhood. My dad, LT MH Nagle, Jr. was stationed at the Naval Air Station there from 54-56. I spent my first 6 months in Morocco living in Rabat, in the oldest French-built house there: 6 Rue de Poitouright off the Avenue Victoire! (My brother and I would climb up into the trees lining the Avenue Victoire that were cut like hedges and shoot the green berries from the trees through pea-shooters on very stuffy French people. How they would howl and carry on! It was a kids paradise.) My brother and I spoke no French, yet we had a lot of French children in our neighborhood with whom we played. Our front yard was full of wisteria vines, wrought-iron balconies, and tangerines. We took trips with our French landlord and his family to Meknes (the Happy Valley), Ifrane in the Atlas, and had such a wonderful time, and drank their champagne and ate French bread with butter and sugar piled on! Later we moved to Port Lyautey on the outskirts of town: 95 Rue de Cathedral de Reims. I had quite a few American dependent children to play with. We used to run wild, unhobbling horses and donkeys, screaming what we thought were horrible things to the poor Arabs who lived over the hill. One of Ben Yousefs sons, I believed nearby. Six months before we had to go back to the States, we moved onto the base into a quonset hut, right behind the Marines gym on the Band Field. And for a kid, that was the BEST! We had the Oasis Snack bar, roller-skating, movies, the pool, Media (sp?) Beach. Also the French had a bunch of Lancasters as you were going into the NAS, which were of endless fascination to us. I remember my dad had always been a flyer, but somehow, an LST appeared on the Ouad Sebou, and my dad was given command of it! We all thought it was very funny, since I dont think he knew anything about ships.
We got to take trips on the R5D to London and NaplesI always threw up on them, which made me very popular. I was fine on the bucket seats, but when we children had to sit on the floor...oh, the poor Sailors that were sitting next to us! I remember the Connies and the Super Connies making trips back and forth btween Port Lyautey and the States. I remember that many of them went down, too.
Morocco got its independence from France while we lived there. F or a month we couldnt go down to the Medinapeople said the Arabs were bouncing French babies on their bayonets. (I dont think sobut it was a colorful saying.) So many things happened there. Daddy had to sit on courts-martial sometimes when some of the men got drunk in front of the main hotel (I have forgotten its namewas it the Mamora (sp?)) and were diving into the fountain pool trying to wring the necks of the swansit happened more than once! He laughed so hard telling us about it! He thought it was great.
I ran into one of my little boyfriends who lived there when I was thereJohn Bunce. He is now an oceanographer living in New Orleans, and his brother was a SEAL. They were sent off to school in England after I left. Our schools were named Navy 214--later Wilhoit.
I would love to hear from other Navy brats who lived there, too! It is sad, because we can never go back. But it was great while it lasted!
POSTED: 1/15/04 @ 0400 hours
Im Bob Wilson and was stationed at NAF (Fleet Weather Central) from September 1952 until February 1954. I was fresh out of AG school at Lakehurst and when my duty assignment came through I didnt even know where Port Lyautey was. In retrospect, it was probably one of the best tours of duty that I had in my 4 years of Navy service. Would love to hear from any of the old Fleet Weather Central alumni. The only one that I am in touch with is Jack Stonesifer, although I understand that Ron Varner is living in Clearfield, PA