PORT LYAUTEY GUESTLOG FOR THE YEAR 2013
Click Here For The 2002 Guestlog ~ Click Here For The 2003 Guestlog ~ Click Here For The 2004 Guestlog ~ Click Here For The 2005 Guestlog
Click Here For The 2006 Guestlog ~ Click Here For The 2007 Guestlog ~ Click Here For The 2008 Guestlog ~ Click Here For The 2009 Guestlog
Click Here For The 2010 Guestlog ~ Click Here For The 2011 Guestlog ~ Click Here For The 2012 Guestlog
Web-editor Note: The following was submitted by Jerry Zimmerman, a Port Lyautey veteran and a photographer who has lent his talent and resources in restoring many of the photographs on this website. His e-mail is in response to an e-mail received from a friend in France named Helen.
Dear family and friends,
Too often the French get a bad report on their appreciation of what the USA and our troops did for them during WWII. Below is the companionate, sincere, response I received from a very dear French friend to the email I sent earlier to her and most of you.
This will make your Christmas a little more special...Jerry Z.
Click here: http://www.youtube.com/v/8D-OL-KQOt4 and turn the speakers on.
Sure, that makes Christmas more special. This video should be shown to everyone in the world, including France. We should keep the memory of what Americans did for us during the last world war.
You know how much I am grateful to the USA for the freedom they gave to France.
POSTED: 12/15/13 1030 hours
Was looking through the internet when I happened upon your site. I was born in Port Lyautey Morocco in 1954. My father was an aviation enlisted man in the U.S. Navy there. His name was Max Cahoone. I was just thinking about that time and place lately and was wondering if you would have any info on other children that were born there. I have always wanted to go back there and visit, but for some reason that place has come to the forefront of my thoughts lately. Would appreciate any info that you could pass on to me for further research. I have pictures to share, old slides that is if desired.
POSTED: 12/15/13 0730 hours
Hello, As with others I stumbled on this site by accident. I served as a Navy hospital corpsman at this base in 1966. The base, duty and the food were great. Good memories include the many sites to visit in the area, best food I ever had at any base in the USN, more trips for good food to the embassy in Rabat, it was a real treat to burn out the older 1961 Pontiac Bonneville ambulance on the airstrip once a month, the day a fellow corpsman raced a Moroccan policeman and beat his BMW cycle and they swapped leather boots for leather gloves, the small Casino in Rabat, treating the Peace Corps workers at out hospital, and on and on it goes. Way too many stories to tell.
Robert Mayer ~ email@example.com
POSTED: 12/01/13 2010 hours
The Heavy Attack (strategic nuclear weapon) squadrons, VC-5, 6, 7, 8, and 9 rotated in/out if Port Lyautey, with 2/3 aircraft deployed on 6th Fleet carriers, in the early 50s. I was an AT/AQ with VC-8. Details about Navy strategic nuclear attack: http://skaneateles.org/ChuckHuber/charles379/USNComposite/index.html Great website, Lou.
POSTED: 11/21/13 1830 hours
I was one of the lucky Radioman to serve at Lyautey from April of 1950 to April of 1952. I lived in a Quonset hut just off the main drag. Later they moved all the Radioman and Teletype crews into
what we all called camel barns. We were close To the Red Roaster and of course to the radio shack. I guess I might be about one of the last ones that served there during 1950-1952. The radio
shack was in a long building and the other end of the building was occupied by the CT's. Though our duties
Were different we made good friends with the CT's. When I left Lyautey I went aboard the USS LANING APD55 OUT OF NORVA. From NORVA I was assigned duties at Main Navy in Washdc. Upon the completion of my tour in NAVCOMMSTA WASHDC., I SWITCHED over to the CT world. Of my eleven duty stations, French Morocco was my favorite.. Anyone that remembers me I would like to get email from you..Tks Russ Michener CTRC Retired. firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 11/15/13 1340 hours
My father was a Lieutenant Commander stationed in Port Lyautey NAS from 1954-1956. The first 6 months of our time in Maroc was spent in Rabat, 6 Rue de Poitou; the next 12 months at 95 Rue de Cathedral de Reims in Port Lyautey, and the last 6 months on the base in half a Quonset Hut. My father flew PBY Catalinas, I believe, for he was always flying ASW seaplanes in the Navy.
lt was a blast for my brother and I to live in Morocco! Happiest times of my life...Timara Beach, Bouknadel Beach, Media Beach! So sad to return to States--Norfolk, of all places. Not very nice, compared to our privileged life in Morocco.
Thanks for keeping this website. Roberta Zilius ~ email@example.com
POSTED: 11/10/13 2100 hours
Joe Gagne, CT1, Naval Security Station 1957 - 1960 A Branch West Palm, Beach Fl ~ firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 11/01/13 1830 hours
It has been quite sometime now since I posted my first msg. with you. Most of us are now getting up in age to where everyday we wake up is a blessing.
Having been stationed at NAS Port Lyautey from 1961 until 1963, I thought I would share the following with my old shipmates. After reading I am quite sure it will bring back a lot memories of what the Navy use to be like. Enjoy Guys!
Contributed by: Mike McCaffrey, Admiral (retired USN)
Never forget this, a Chief can become an Officer, but an Officer can never become a Chief. Chiefs have their standards!
Recollections of a White Hat.
"One thing we weren't aware of at the time, but became evident as life wore on, was that we learned true leadership from the finest examples any lad was ever given, Chief Petty Officers. They were crusty old bastards who had done it all and had been forged into men who had been time tested over more years than a lot of us had time on the planet. The ones I remember wore hydraulic oil stained hats with scratched and dinged-up insignia, faded shirts, some with a Bull Durham tag dangling out of their right-hand pocket or a pipe and tobacco reloads in a worn leather pouch in their hip pockets, and a Zippo that had been everywhere. Some of them came with tattoos on their forearms that would force them to keep their cuffs buttoned at a Methodist picnic.
Most of them were as tough as a boarding house steak. A quality required to survive the life they lived. They were, and always will be, a breed apart from all other residents of Mother Earth. They took eighteen year old idiots and hammered the stupid bastards into sailors.
You knew instinctively it had to be hell on earth to have been born a Chief's kid. God should have given all sons born to Chiefs a return option.
A Chief didn't have to command respect. He got it because there was nothing else you could give them. They were God's designated hitters on earth.
We had Chiefs with fully loaded Submarine Combat Patrol Pins, and combat aircrew wings in my day... hard-core bastards who remembered lost mates, and still cursed the cause of their loss... and they were expert at choosing descriptive adjectives and nouns, none of which their mothers would have endorsed.
At the rare times you saw a Chief topside in dress canvas, you saw rows of hard-earned, worn and faded ribbons over his pocket. "Hey Chief, what's that one and that one?" "Oh hell kid, I can't remember. There was a war on. They gave them to us to keep track of the campaigns." "We didn't get a lot of news out where we were. To be honest, we just took their word for it. Hell son, you couldn't pronounce most of the names of the places we went. They're all depth charge survival geedunk." "Listen kid, ribbons don't make you a Sailor." We knew who the heroes were, and in the final analysis that's all that matters.
Many nights, we sat in the after mess deck wrapping ourselves around cups of coffee and listening to their stories. They were light-hearted stories about warm beer shared with their running mates in corrugated metal sheds at resupply depots where the only furniture was a few packing crates and a couple of Coleman lamps. Standing in line at a Honolulu cathouse or spending three hours soaking in a tub in Freemantle, smoking cigars, and getting loaded. It was our history. And we dreamed of being just like them because they were our heroes. When they accepted you as their shipmate, it was the highest honor you would ever receive in your life. At least it was clearly that for me. They were not men given to the prerogatives of their position.
You would find them with their sleeves rolled up, shoulder-to-shoulder with you in a stores loading party. "Hey Chief, no need for you to be out here tossing' crates in the rain, we can get all this crap aboard."
"Son, the term 'All hands' means all hands."
"Yeah Chief, but you're no damn kid anymore, you old coot."
"Horsefly, when I'm eighty-five parked in the stove up old bastards' home, I'll still be able to kick your worthless butt from here to fifty feet past the screw guards along with six of your closest friends." And he probably wasn't bullshitting.
They trained us. Not only us, but hundreds more just like us. If it wasn't for Chief Petty Officers, there wouldn't be any U.S. Navy. There wasn't any fairy godmother who lived in a hollow tree in the enchanted forest who could wave her magic wand and create a Chief Petty Officer.
They were born as hot-sacking seamen, and matured like good whiskey in steel hulls over many years. Nothing a nineteen year-old jay-bird could cook up was original to these old saltwater owls. They had seen E-3 jerks come and go for so many years; they could read you like a book. "Son, I know what you are thinking. Just one word of advice - DON'T. It won't be worth it."
Chiefs aren't the kind of guys you thank. Monkeys at the zoo don't spend a lot of time thanking the guy who makes them do tricks for peanuts.
Appreciation of what they did, and who they were, comes with long distance retrospect. No young lad takes time to recognize the worth of his leadership. That comes later when you have experienced poor leadership, or let's say, when you have the maturity to recognize what leaders should be, you find that Chiefs are the standard by which you measure all others.
They had no Academy rings to get scratched up. They butchered the King's English. They had become educated at the other end of an anchor chain from Copenhagen to Singapore. They had given their entire lives to the U.S. Navy. In the progression of the nobility of employment, Chief Petty Officer heads the list. So, when we ultimately get our final duty station assignments and we get to wherever the big Chief of Naval Operations in the sky assigns us, if we are lucky, Marines will be guarding the streets, and there will be an old Chief in an oil-stained hat and a cigar stub clenched in his teeth standing at the brow to assign us our bunks and tell us where to stow our gear... and we will all be young again, and the damn coffee will float a rock.
Life fixes it so that by the time a stupid kid grows old enough and smart enough to recognize who he should have thanked along the way, he no longer can. If I could, I would thank my old Chiefs. If you only knew what you succeeded in pounding in this thick skull, you would be amazed. So, thanks you old casehardened unsalvageable son-of-a-bitches. Save me a rack in the berthing compartment."
Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass. It's about learning to dance in the rain.
Floyd Parsons - Terminal Crew
Web-Editor Note, Floyd's article brought back great memories of the CPO I served under at Port Lyautey, Gordon B. "Sleepy" Clevinger, my division Chief at Port Lyautey and to this day, I still smile when I think of him. Sleepy was one of the old fashion types of Navy Chief Petty Officers, a by the book Navy type but a fair and caring human being. My remembrance of him him was a that he was great guy who got me out of a couple of "mis-deeds" though there was some punishment duty required (better than a court martial). Please click here to read a short narrative about him.
POSTED: 10/31/13 0830 hours
One of our comrades from radar hill 57-58, Harland Randall passed away recently. He lived for 22 years with a new heart. The rejection medicine he had to take had a bad effect on him but was necessary. We served together on the hill, at the radio station and played on a football team together. He was living in Cuba City, Wi. when he passed. Please update me e-mail address to email@example.com
Lyle Lieffring, NW Wi.
POSTED: 10/27/13 1230 hours
My name is Ernie Leclerc I was stationed at Port Lyautey from Aug 63 - Mar 65 and from Mar 68 - Jun 70. I was a Hospital Corpsman and on both occasions I worked in Medical Supply, the big warehouse behind the Hospital. I remember spending time at the Acey Ducey club on base and at the Fleet Club in Town. On my first tour I used to hang out at Cafe des Sports. Two of my sons were born in Rota, Spain on my second tour. I would like to hear from anyone who remembers me. I especially would like to hear from some other medical personnel stationed there when I was.
POSTED: 10/07/13 1100 hours
I was stationed in Bouknadel Morocco 1964-1966 and worked in the base power plant. I remember RMC Ricketts
he also served on a navy information gathering ship. I worked for ENCM Kenneth Dexter and was friend with Ron and
Cathy Priskorn. Wonderful place and people.
I was stationed again in Kenetra Morocco 1968-1970 and worked for the Navy Exchange doing minor maintenance on
the Navy Exchange buildings in all three sites. Both tours were rewarding and were the highlight of my Navy Career.
ENCM Gerald Watson USN-RET
POSTED: 10/07/13 1100 hours
I enjoyed reading about military personnel stationed in Morocco. My father was a pilot in the Air Force and lived there along with my mother and older brother and sister. I was born at Port Lyautey in 1961 and was a bit confused growing up exactly where I originated, was it Kenitra or Sidi Slamane or Port Lyautey? I never knew exactly what to tell the other military brats as we exchanged our stories of the many places we had lived.
For simplicity's sake, I often would reply "Africa", to the question of "where were you born,"which often generated even more confusion and disbelief from classmates and teachers.
My parents have long since been "reassigned" and now as a maturing adult, I wish I could ask them more about Morocco and their experiences. This website serves as a valuable archive and an outlet for those of us looking for a connection and way to honor our family heritage. It's only now that I recognize the unique and shaping life that was offered to us as children of military service personnel.
Blessing to you all-Tracy Baugh (firstname.lastname@example.org) -daughter of Lt. Col Richard C.B.and Sybil Wright.
POSTED: 09/28/13 0800 hours
Two days ago my wife and I re-connected with a Moroccan friend whom we had not talked with since leaving Morocco in 1974. He was a gendarme who was being taught English at CEMS. My wife was one of the teachers, and we became close friends during his duty there. I was a CT at Sidi Yahia, and my wife and I lived at the Esso building. Our friend has sent us pictures of the Esso building as it is now. Ray Sapriel's car dealership is now a bank. The entry that we used to the apartments is still there. You can see the prison in the pictures that were sent to us, and the area along the Sebou River has been improved. It has been great talk with our friend after all these years.
Wayne Locklar ~ email@example.com
POSTED: 09/18/13 0945 hours
Hi, I came across your site while doing some research. My dad (Lester Whisenhunt) was stationed here in around 1951-1952. He was assigned to a Naval Air Squadron from Mayport FL. Looking at the pictures reminds me of the ones I have seen in his albums of the same time and poses of many of the other shipmates. He always spoke of the heat and flying around the Med along with some other odd and end stories. I will come back to this site and look more into it. I will try to upload some of his photos to add to the history. My dad past in January of 2009 and would loved to have seen this.
SFC (P) Randy Whisenhunt, USAR ~ firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 09/11/13 2245 hours
Stumbled upon your web site recently. In early 1963 I was on my way via Naval Air Transport from Norfolk to Port Lyautey. Port Lyautey was a stopover to catch another flight to Naples. I was there about a week waiting for my flight. During that week I was assigned to ride a school bus that picked up dependent children from their homes outside the base and transported them to the school on base. Since I didn't have civilian clothes with me (which was a requirement for sailors going into town) I wore Navy dungarees. I don't remember much of anything else about the place except that it appeared to be a fairly decent duty station.
Jerry Popovice, PNC, USN (RET) ~ email@example.com
POSTED: 09/05/13 2130 hours
I recently stumbled upon your website. Great work! I was never stationed there, nor have I ever been there. However, I lived in Rabat and Sidi Slimane when my father was stationed there in 1955 and 1956. He was a pilot in the US Air Force. I always loved looking at the Morocco slides that my father took and I always remembered my parents talking about Port Lyautey. So when I needed to change my password the other day, I thought I would use some variation of Port Lyautey. Not sure about the spelling, I entered the name into Google and your website was first in line.
My parents loved living in exotic Morocco. After reading your website, it seems that you and everyone else had that same reaction. I was a bit too young to remember much about it so the slides are my link to my life there.
I used to belong to a "Moroccan Reunion Association" that was primarily made up of Air Force people but I haven't received any mail from them in a long time. I was able to purchase a great book that they published of the Air Force bases in Morocco.
I wish you best of luck with this great website.
Richard Gleichauf ~ Rick.Gleichauf@HuntCompanies.com
POSTED: 09/04/13 2140 hours
I count myself and my Navy family to be some of the very fortunate to be stationed at NAS Port Lyauty from 8-53 thru 6-56. My Dad , now deceased was a Chief in the Seabees and responsible for the Utilities support at the base during these years. It was easily the most fascinating place the Navy posted us over my 18 years of following my Dad around the world. I was 10 upon arrival and 13 when we departed having witnessed the fight for independence by the Moroccan people and the French. The country was a French protectorate in those days.
We lived in a walled home next to the Medina in the city when we arrived, but had to move onto the Base when the fighting erupted. For three little boys, that was exciting as it gets, don't think our parents thought the same. Lots of memories, the best being going to the AFNCO club on Saturdays to have a hamburger on a real hamburger bun, the only time we had sliced bread was when a hop from the states came in to Sidi Slimane and one of Dad's friends would bring over some bread. Have you ever tried to make a PB&J sandwich on French bread cut by an 11 year old.
We would go to the CPO club in the morning at the beach and have supper in the Atlas Mountains that evening with a temperature difference of 35 degrees, not many places where you can do that. Well as you can see it was a fantastic place and I remember it like it was yesterday.
John Rogers ~ firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 09/04/13 0625 hours
Just a note about Navy Personnel I served with at USNRST Bouknadel, Morocco in 1970. ETC James Pennington passed away in 2003, His wife Marisa passed away in 2010. I am late in reporting this, but just found it myself. GOD rest their wonderful souls.
Darian Paganelli ~ email@example.com
POSTED: 08/05/13 1255 hours
I was born on the U.S. Naval Air Station, Port Lyautey, Kenitra, Morocco on November 1, 1960 to Rocco and Patricia DeRobertis Jr. Though I have no memory of the base, I have grown up with the stories and pictures and know that the Navy has been good to my family.
Patricia DeRobertis Cruz, RN, BSN, PHN, firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 08/05/13 0600 hours
FOUNDING THIS WEB SITE WAS A GREAT IDEA THANKS
I WAS STATIONED AT NOB NORFOLK AND JUST ELOPED WITH MY GIRLFRIEND PATRICIA ON SATURDAY, TO ELIZABETH, NC 9/26/59. THAT FOLLOWING MONDAY I RECEIVED ORDERS TO PORT LYAUTEY. I SENT MY NEW WIFE HOME TO CLEARWATER, FL AND SHIPPED OUT TO PORT LYAUTEY ON 10/6/59 TO 9/7/61
I WAS A SEAMAN CS STRIKER AND ASSIGNED TO THE GALLEY. AT 19 THIS WAS A GREAT FEELING TO BE IN THE NAVY IN A FOREIGN COUNTRY. I WAS ASSIGNED A TEMPORARY BARRACKS ( FOR 3 DAYS ) FOR INCOMING AND OUTGOING TRANSITS. WHILE IN THIS BARRACKS THE OUT GOING SAILORS WHERE TRYING TO SELL ME SCRIPT. THIS LOOKED LIKE MONOPOLY MONEY AND I THOUGHT THIS WAS A PRANK FOR NEW COMERS. LATER I UNDERSTOOD.
MY WIFE IN EARLY JANUARY 1960 CAME OVER AND WE LIVED IN KENITRA IN A NAVY APPROVED APARTMENT COMPLEX WITH OTHER NAVY FAMILIES. OUR FIRST
DAUGHTER WAS BORN ON THE BASE 11/1/60
I WAS ASSIGNED TO THE BAKE SHOP MOST OF MY TOUR THERE WHICH WAS NEXT TO THE FRENCH BAKE SHOP, WE SHARED A BUILDING. THEY SPOKE SOME ENGLISH AND ALWAYS WANTED OUR SLICED BREAD. THEY CAME OVER DAILY AND WANTED TO TRADE FOR OUR BREAD AND PASTRIES. NATURALLY WE JUST GAVE THEM SOME. WE ALSO MADE BREAD AND BAKE GOODS FOR THE DEPENDENTS COMMISSARY. ALSO SPECIAL OCCASIONS FOR THE USO IN TOWN.
IN THE EARLY SUMMER OF 1960 IN AGADIR MOROCCO THEIR WAS A DEVASTATING EARTHQUAKE THAT KILLED APPROX 500 INHABITANTS. THE NAVY & FRENCH SENT IN HELP TO FIND AND GIVE MEDICAL AID TO THE PEOPLE. I SPENT 2 DAYS HELPING. VERY REWARDING. ALSO THAT SAME SUMMER I WAS THE CHIEF LIFEGUARD AT THE BASE POOL. THE NAVY SENT ME TO THE AIR FORCE BASE IN CASABLANCA FOR REFRESHER WATER SAFETY TRAINING . SAVED 4 PEOPLE THAT SUMMER. 1 SAILOR AND 3 DEPENDENTS.
I ALSO MADE RATE THAT FALL POCS3 . IN FEB 1961 GOT ORDERS TO THE USS BIGALOE (SP) DD942 SO I SENT MY WIFE AND DAUGHTER BACK HOME TO CLEARWATER, FL ON A MATTS FLIGHT. AS THE MILITARY WOULD HAVE IT A WEEK LATER THEY EXTENDED MY TOUR IN PORT LYAUTEY UNTIL SEPT. 7, 1961 BECAUSE OF THE END OF MY ENLISTMENT, OR EXTEND MY ENLISTMENTS BY SIX YEARS AND I COULD GO TO SEA. THANK YOU BUT, NO
THE REMAINDER OF MY TOUR THEIR I WOULD GO AND SITE SEE OLD GERMAN NAVAL BUNKERS USED IN WWII OVERLOOKING THE SABU RIVER TO KEEP ALLIED SHIPPING FOR ENTERING THE SABU RIVER. THESE WHERE BLOWN UP BY UDT TEAMS AND NAVAL BOMBARDMENT.
SAW MEDIEVAL FORTS WITH CANNON IN POSITION AND THE GREAT MOROCCAN AND FRENCH PEOPLE WHO WHERE GREAT TO US THEN!
ALSO SAW MANY TIMES THE MOROCCAN MEN DOWN AT THE SABU RIVER USING EXPLOSIVES FOR FISHING. THEY WOULD STATION SEVERAL MEN AND BOYS DOWN STREAM ABOUT 100 YARDS AND THROW THE EXPLOSIVES IN THE RIVER. THE EVOLVING EXPLOSION WOULD STUN THE FISH AND THEY WOULD SURFACE UNCONSCIOUS AND FLOAT DOWN THE RIVER ONLY TO BE PLUCKED OUT OF THE WATER FOR SALE & CONSUMPTION.
BY THE WAY THAT ELOPEMENT ON 9/26/59 TURNS INTO 54 YEARS NEXT MONTH WITH MY BRIDE.
I LOVED & CHERISH MY TIME IN THE NAVY AND DONT REGRET A DAY. THE VA IS ALSO GREAT TO ME.
RESPECTFULLY PROUD SAILOR
Rocco DeRobertis Jr. POCS2 HENDERSON, NV (LAS VEGAS) 89012 email@example.com
POSTED: 07/21/13 0600 hours
I was stationed at the Navy Fleet Weather Center in !951 to 1953. I was an AG3. Jim Bowden 813 SW99th st Gainesville, Fl 32607 firstname.lastname@example.org
I remember working in the office in the hanger. French had an aircraft mechanic school there. At night they had students as security. We were to have a password to get in and out of the hanger.About 2 AM I went outside to take a weather observation and when I came around the corner to enter the hanger I suddenly was looking down the barrel of the students rifle. Not knowing the password All I could think of was Coca cola. The french sailors used to come in our office and buy candy and cokes.I just pointed to the office door and said Coca cola and he turned his rifle away from my face, Never did learn a password. Many good memories
POSTED: 07/19/13 2150 hours
Clifford Wenhold, AE3 - VAH-9 Sanford Fla. NAS - 54/55 . Enjoyed my duty there , even met a guy from my home town in chow line . My elect. shop chief , B.Q. Smith was a great guy . Visited Nice , FR and Gibraltar . Would like to hear from someone in VAH-9 . Go Navy, CPWMilSq@verizon.net
POSTED: 07/10/13 1530 hours
Served 1964/65 Air Traffic Control and Ops served under HMS Denton MC, CPO Flash Gordon and LCDR Bill Hunter. I worked for the same crew, was also there 64-65, went to a couple parties at Flash Gordons house up on the hill. Lcdr Lou Helms was assistant ops officer and AC2 Chuck Crowley was my section leader. Dated Karen Hansen, Capt Hansen's our XO's daughter. Wow vivid memories. Thanks for touching base. I check that site several times a day. My cube mate was AC3 Bill Sands from Reading Pa.
Larry Merris ~ email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 06/24/13 1150 hours
My name is Dennis Bechler and I was stationed in Morroco in 1970 as a Base Police Man. Rode pickup truck as our patrol vehichle. One US person and one Morrocon per truck. Im not sure which base I was at? I do remember a phyton track across the road we patroled and it was as wide as my leg. Im glade I never saw it. On our base we had pilots training Morrocon pilots how to fly our planes. Wore brown base uniform, red hat, badge, pistol-38. Liked my time there, just dont remember a hole lot anymore. I live in Wis. and got to say weather is different. Signing out: BM3 Dennis Bechler. email@example.com
POSTED: 06/19/13 0645 hours
Hello. My Dad was stationed at Port Lyautey from 1952 or 53 until Sept. 1954, I think. I was born in Jan. of 1954 and my parents told me that we left when I was 9 months old. I am looking for anyone who might remember my mother and father, Paul and Margaret Schreur. They had a little boy, my brother Tom, when they came over from a naval base in Maryland. They lived in a small house which may have been off base and from what my mother told me, they could walk to a pond or maybe the beach. I think my father was an air traffic controller. Unfortunately, they passed away, my Dad in 2005 from lung cancer and my mother in 2006 from Alzheimers. I am going back to Morocco at the end of this month for the first time since I left. If anyone knows of my parents, I would love to hear from you. I would also love to know if there is anything left of the base that I could go visit when I am there. We are going to be in Rabat for 2 days. My name is Carol Schreur-Johnson. Thank you. firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 06/18/13 0815 hours
Cannot believe thjat someone heard of NAS Port Lyautey! Our motto was we were there and no one cared. I arrived there June 57 from NAS Virginia Beach at just 19 years old.I was USNR and stayed there to 1959.Was attached to VR24 then eventually transferred to NAS Port Lyautey. I have many memories and still think of being there many years ago.I had my own crew [Moroccans], and generally worked off base.We would always try to get to the Marine radar site Sidi yahia on Wednesday for lunch for barbaque steaks. I also remember Susanns and VCS in Rabat.-In 1959 I got discharged from Navy and went back to N,Y. I think we did a good job there and we worked close to the French Marines. I had many French friends.In New York went to college at night and eventually worked as a field tech for a major defense contracter at many military sites. Eventually ended up in California.
J. Page ~ email@example.com
POSTED: 06/10/13 1225 hours
My name is Mike Andrews. I served as a corpsman from May '71 to May 72 working in the delivery room and obstetrics ward for 6 months and men's ward at the base hospital. First post was 3/3/07 and second on 01/03/08. 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 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 visit. Thank-you Lou for all your work. mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 06/08/13 1630 hours
June '64 to June '67 DM1 on arrival, made Chief in Jan '65. Public Works Dept - maintenance contract administrator for airfield upgrades to support 12 F-5A/B aircraft for Royal MoroccanAir Force in 1965-66. Will be changing email address to Verizon next week and will be glad to write an interesting bio of my 3 years serving the Navy while residing on a Moroccan Army post that also supports the Air Force. (US and Moroccan elements). Please respond to authenticate and I'll get to work on the story of my tour that was the best 3 years anyone could have ever imagined........
Dick Hale, DMC ~ email@example.com
POSTED: 05/26/13 1630 hours
STATIONED IN PL 1961 TO 1964, CRASH CREW, SEAMAN GUARD UNIT, DAN READON JR,
POSTED: 05/23/13 1300 hours
OSC Scannell USNR Retired: I was stationed at NAS Port Lyautey 57-59. I was on the hill (radar Site). We had the Direction Finder for leading lost Aircraft back with the direction finder. I worked for some time fixing the radios in the crash trucks.
I was reassigned to comm center on the base. One of my supervisors at that time was RM2 Grenemeyer. Did I spell it reight?) Met a lot a great radioman. I drank too much and was busted from RD3 to RDSN. Not a good thing since being a hash marked RDSN. Really good times. Had a friend and his entire from one of the ECM squadrons, I think it was VQ2. My memory is really bad.
Someone I got past being busted in rank and served out 37 years of Naval service and retired from NWC China Lake. Seems I spent more time as RM or brown shoe working with airdales, then as a Radarman.
There were lots of guys I served with at Port Lyautey but I cant remember too many names. I do remember a radar man, I think RDSN named Thacker. Our Chief on the radar site was an enginemen name Morrison. Anybody else from the comm center 57-59 or the radar hill gang?
John Scannell ~ firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 05/19/13 1450 hours
I was in Sidi from 1972 to 1974 at NAVCAMS and Tech Control.
I was an RM1 2319 Tech Controller. We had a wonderful tour and some great memories. We lived for a few months in a Villa in Kenitra before moving into base housing in Sidi.
Felton D. McAfee ~ email@example.com
POSTED: 05/14/13 0840 hours
I'm trying to find any picture of the mail plane out of Kentitra in the '71 - '72 timeframe.
Chuck Fellers ~ firstname.lastname@example.org
Sidi Yahia '71-'72.
POSTED: 05/11/13 0830 hours
Hi, my name is Sid Hoopes and I was stationed at Sidi Yahia and Port Lyautey from 1958 to 1960. I got orders right out of ET "A" school. My orders were originally to Sidi Yahia receiver site. I had just been married 2 weeks before I left for Morocco. I made 3rd class, and since I had prior service with the National Guard that made me eligible to have my dependents accompany me. 3 months after I arrived, my wife was able to be with me. That was some experience since we were both from Kansas and my wife had not been further from her home than about 60 miles. She traveled all the way by herself. After she arrived I was transferred to NAS with an on call billet job. We lived in Kenitra for about 6 months before we got on base housing. We lived in half a Quonset hut, and we chased cockroaches back and forth. My station was in the microwave room on the second deck of the Admin Bldg.Several times I got caught in the room because right outside the room was the
Captain's conference room and sometimes the conferences lasted a long time. The microwave was the communications that connected Sidi Yahia and Sidi Bouknadel to NAS. My first son was born there too. We had our fatima, like everybody else. We were able to take some side trips to Fez and Gibralter. My wife got to go to Rabat on a tour. Those were some good times, however like everybody else, you counted the days left before you would be transferred out.
Sid ~ email@example.com
POSTED: 05/07/13 0900 hours
I was assigned to USNTC Kenitra from July 67 to November 69. I worked in the Educational Services Office in the admin building My Division Officer was LT Jack E. Dameron. I started as a seaman apprentice and transferred as a YN3. I was taught the job by Pete Fragos and in turn I trained Dennis Foley (Rahway, NJ) and Michael Bury (PA). Next to ESO was the Legal Office manned by Danny Neidlinger (Savannah, GA). Danny was a great friend but he spent little time on the base during the weekends because he had a pretty fiancée who lived in Casablanca.
Other friends whose names I recall were Lou Seamans (DE), Chuck Clark (Texarkana, AR) and Gary Mueller (MN). Clark had a blue 1959 Chevrolet. We helped him put many miles on that Chevy traveling to various points of interest and especially beaches. On one trip to the beach I came very close to drowning in a rip current. I managed to stay afloat as the current carried me out to sea. The current then carried me down the beach and eventually pushed me ashore. It was my first trip out to sea but it was not to be my last.
We made numerous trips to Rabat and Casablanca. We drove inland to Fes, Meknes, and Marrakech. We drove to a lake controlled by Special Services which included cabins, fishing boats, and fishing gear. They told us the lake was stocked but we caught no fish! On another occasion we checked out a Special Services van and drove to a ski resort in the Atlas Mountains. The skiing was fun but a night I slept in an unheated hostel with only one blanket. I was so happy to leave those cold mountains and get back to my warm rack in the barracks.
Occasionally I took advantage of flights to Rota, Spain, in the station aircraft. The plane was a C47 which was a noisy World War II vintage aircraft. I sat on bench seats but the flights did not take long. The flights gave us a break from our daily routines and enabled us to purchase electronics. camera gear and liquid refreshments.
I spent way too much of my time at the pool but the PA system played my favorite tunes and the cabana served up a great sub sandwich made with mystery meat and red sauce. Next door was the Hillside Club where something was always going on and the Heinekens were only 25 cents! There was a restaurant in the club where I did my best to support its bottom line. Down the road towards the airfield was the bowling alley. I didnt bowl then but the grill served up the best darn onion burger ever made.
I showed movies for Special Services for $2.00 a flick at the Hillside Club, Halsey Theater, and the outdoor theater. Had to make extra money because I rarely ate at the mess hall. I showed movies like The Graduate and The Bible. The first time I showed The Bible in Halsey Theater I started the projector but there was only sound. I stopped the projector and backed out the film thinking I had made a threading mistake. I rethreaded the film and ran the movie again with the same results. I did it again same results. Finally I gave up and let the move run. After a period of darkness the video part of the film slowly became visible. It was made that way! I felt so stupid but the people watching the movie down below never uttered a sound of disapproval!
I remember the faces of the friendly Moroccans who worked in the admin building and barracks but I cant recall their names. On one occasion one of the barracks workers took me hunting with him near the Sebou River. He was very successful at catching rabbits using only a mongoose and a net.
I remember when I first got to Kenitra I was walking up the hill to the club wondering how I was going to survive in this alien place. But I quickly made friends, mastered my job, and started exploring. The base was a little piece of the USA and Morocco was a strange foreign country that I came to greatly appreciate. I was having so much fun enjoying my life in this land I extended my tour for another 12 months!
Lou thanks for your service to our country and for creating and maintaining this website. I have enjoyed it immensely.
PNC Daniel G. Wright, USN(RET) ~ firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 04/30/13 1650 hours
I was stationed at Sidi Feb 1969 to Nov 1970. I worked in the personnel department and ran the education office and various other tasks. Had a great time and traveled a lot with others. Contact me at email@example.com
Mike Engl PN3
POSTED: 04/23/13 1130 hours
My name is Jack Shatinsky ( Ski) eoncn,stationed there 1961-62, I worked in public works with rest of the B's, I played basketball for the CBs, would love to hear from any of the guys. What a great site, firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 04/20/13 0930 hours
Was working at Port Llyautey Naval Base from 1953 till 1959 in the Public Works Department, under Commander Sauter, Chief Petty Officer Carpenter.Also worked with Jim Mccrossan, PO3 from Philadelphia, PA I would like to contact him as the last time I visited with him was when he was living in VALLE FORGE in the 1960's
Jim, if you read this, please contact me, Max Benchimol.
E MAIL: email@example.com
POSTED: 03/30/13 0930 hours
Roman Hnatowski ?- 11/68-10/69 as an EA2 at NTC Kenitra, served as the Assistant Housing Manager, worked for BUC Thorne and with SN Rich Norwood. Shared a BEQ room with EO2 Ken Kingsley. Played football for Public Works, favorite hobby - Liberty Hound traveling throughout Morocco. Purchased a 69 Triumph Bonneville Motorcycle in England and traveled throughoutGermany, Switzerland, France, Spain and Gibraltar, what a year after 2 tours to Nam! If anyone knows the whereabouts of BUC William "Bill" Thorne or Rich Norwood of Texas, please contact me at MCB62VietnamVet@Yahoo.com.
V/r, Roman ~ firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 03/30/13 0330 hours
Amazed to have found this site. My name is Jeanne Thomas and I was the wife of Carl Thomas (now deceased) stationed at Navel Air Facility Port Lyautey from June 1953 to March 1955. Carl was an air controlman 3rd class and we lived on Blvd. Gouraud the whole time, first in a 2 room apt. and later a 3 room one. I have a few pictures I would share including one from my 21st birthday party with a lot of names on it. Maybe someone would recognize themselves. I also have all the letters I wrote home during my nearly 2 years there so may come up with some interesting memories in them. The only names I can remember now were Bill and Louise Yeager from Brooklyn but it would be fun to hear from anyone who might remember Carl and I.
Jeanne Thomas email@example.com
POSTED: 03/18/13 0845 hours
I was stationed there in the mid to late 50s. I worked as crew-leader. I drove an MB-5 most of the time. I was a six-by-six that would go like hell. Always the first to arrive at the destination,whether it was a speed drill,or an emergency...GMC powered,with four Chrysler industrial V/8 engines running pumps. Foam tanks and a roof rack full of extra foam cans......I still miss that place...I started a motorcycle club while I was there...
James L. Browning ~ firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 03/16/13 1215 hours
I stumbled across your web pages & photos while I was planning a remembrance trip back to Morocco -Sidi Slimane AFB. I lived there as a kid in the early '60's. One place I haven't been able to find is "Happy Valley." I saw that you had some photos of it and I was wondering if you could remember where in Morocco it is? If I recall, it was constructed by prisoners of war during WWI? I'd sure appreciate anything you can remember about it.
Anmarie Maier ~ email@example.com
POSTED: 03/14/13 0745 hours
I consider myself a lucky person, since I got to be stationed in Morocco twice.
1956 - 1959 at NAF Port Lyautey/NCS Sidi Yahia ---I was transferred from the USS Lake Champlain CVA39 ship was on a MED cruise to NAF for further transportation back to CONUS because of expiration of enlistment. Well make it short...I got asked if I wanted to be stationed there and when I said yes...they made all of arrangements and I re-enlisted for duty at the NAF which later got expanded to include NCS based on my overall communications duties. My wife Nell joined me in Sep 56 and our daughter Diana was born there in Sep 59 Had the please of getting promoted to Chief while there. We then got orders to NCS Washington DC.
1963 - 1969 at NCS Sidi Yahia
---This second tour was a complete shock...we were in Rota Spain at the
NCS Spain and I got
orders to NCS MOROCCO...We had the pleasure of driving our car from
Spain to Morocco, which included a long ferry ride from a place in Spain to the Spanish controlled city of Ceuta, Morocco. Then we left Spain and entered Morocco on our way to that famous Hotel in down town Kenitra for the second time while waiting for either a place to rent or for on base housing. Worked in CAMS (Communications Area Master Station) along with RMCS V. Huntsman
and a great group of communicators. Have many found memories of the fun and self made entertainment we created for ourselves and wives at the CPO CLUB! Departed Morocco as an RMCS and headed for duty on the USS POCONO (AGC-16) home ported in Norfolk, VA. Retired on 6 June 1983
Raymond E. Steckman, RMCM
2145 Ester Court
Norfolk, Va. 23518-2105
POSTED: 03/07/13 1500 hours
Found the site while checking on Reunion Marroc and thought I would drop a line. I'm James (Jim) Harris and made RM3 while stationed at Sidi Yahia, Morroco from late '62 until early '65. I was assigned there from radio school in Dago. Basically worked Crypto the whole time I was there. It was good duty and I enjoyed every minute. Could have done a little less time in the EM club at Sidi or the Fleet Club in Kenetra.
Did enjoy making it to Rabat and Casa Blanca tho. As I did not want to do my entire enlistment at Sidi, when my time was up I left in '65 for the USS Amphion AR-13, home ported in Norfolk, VA. That tub was welded to the pier; except for a short stint at sea during the Dominican Crisis when we went to Santa Domingo. Upon return to Norfolk, they welded us to the pier again and I said I'm outta here.
About that same time a shipmate, George Traylor, I had served with in Morroco, got ahold of me and asked if I wanted to swap to the Enterprise. I jumped all over that and spent the next year plus, off shore doing that Nam thing. Discharged in '66.
Funny how things work out, the Amphion was given to Iran and apparently sunk some time later. Now the Big E is being cut up for scrap in New York. I have been in recent contact with George Traylor and Charlie Smart who were at Sidi the same time I was but would like to contact Tom Nichols, Denny Harris,and "Heavy" Hall, should they happen to see this post; even Ens. George Meany and yes he was related to the George Meany.
Hope to see as many as possible at the reunion in New Orleans in June.
Best wishes to all;
Jim Harris ~ firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 03/07/13 0430 hours
I am Jim Smalley. I was stationed at the transmitter site right out of Bainbridge radio school. Shipped to Moroc in March of 69. Left around June of 70. Served with great people, met wonderful citizens in Kenitra. Spent most of my down time between the Midnight Lounge and across the way at the club owned by the expat(whose name I have lost). Chief Ricketts and Jerry Bough were my bosses. Lt. Wheeler was XO and Lt. __________ran the base. Thank you the memories are many.
POSTED: 02/28/13 1130 hours
I was stationed there twice...1956 - 1959 at NAF Port Lyautey/NCS Sidi Yahia ---I was transferred from the USS Lake Champlain CVA39 ship was on a MED cruise to NAF for further transportation back to CONUS because of expiration of enlistment. Well make it short...I got asked if I wanted to be stationed there and when I said yes...they made all of arrangements and I re-enlisted for duty at the
NAF which later got expanded to include NCS based on my overall duties. My wife joined me in Sep 56 and our daughter was born there in Sep 59. 1963 - 1969 at NCS Sidi Yahia ---This second tour was a complete shock...we were in Rota Spain at the NCS Spain and I got orders to NCS MOROCCO...
Raymond E. Steckman ~ email@example.com
USN Retired RMCM
POSTED: 02/24/13 1100 hours
Served 1964/65 Air Traffic Control and Ops served under HMS Denton MC, CPO Flash Gordon and LCDR Bill Hunter...great duty station, lots of fond memories.
Larry Merris ~ firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 02/10/13 0700 hours
Marine Barracks, Sidi Yahia, Feb 1962 to Aug 1963. Awfully hot during the day in the Antenna Field and not a lot of difference at nite except during the rainy season. Running @ 0700 on off duty days was a real challenge.
Played a lot of softball (centerfield :-) . Many good friends and fond memories of those I served with. Going on Liberty and Leave went a long way in helping me understand another culture. Port Lyautey was still operating, but scheduled for closure when I left.
Really surprised, and gladdened, at finding this site.
POSTED: 02/08/13 1100 hours
Please include my posting on your website. I was born in April 1957 and would love to chat with someone who knew my father (now deceased) USN CPO James F.Williams, or any of the rest of my family.my older siblings went to school there and my oldest sister Kathleen Williams went to prom there also. My dad was a "partying man" LOL so I think there could be plenty of pictures of him out there. Thanks, Anna Williams my e mail address is email@example.com
POSTED: 02/06/13 0500 hours
I just came across your site; thanks for putting it together.
I was at the Naval Air Station from January, 1967 - December, 1967. Hospital Corpsman in charge of the lab. I saw things in the fatima's stool samples that I had only seen pictures in my test books. It was a great educational experience. I loved the country and I especially loved traveling to Gibraltar and Casablanca.
Jerry Dockery, HM5 ~ firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 02/05/13 1500 hours
My goodness, its been years, but I spent part of my childhood in Morocco, Kinetra and Port Lyuatey. Dad was attached to the US Navy Fleet Intelligence as a manager in IBM's FSD (Federal Systems Division). Although not privey to the finer details of the work, I always took it as a cooperative effort to begin a comprehensive computer system of ship positioning...I also know he had something to do with guidance systems on The Polaris Sub class. I was raised as a Muslim child part of the day by Fatima, our maid. I played in the heat of the Sirocco's with my part German Shepard, part Husky dog
named Duchess. I had one friend I can remeber, named Hal, and I believe his Dad was Navy. had many cute Moroccan girlfriends, some of them French. We left in 1964 and came back to the Staes on the Cunard ship Mauratania, referbished recently before our journey but ready to be retired the following year. I remeber the division of the levels of the ship by Class, with us being in the Upper Class and the rag tag decks below being for "others" I had a shipboard girlfriend who was exceptionally beautful, but can't remember her name. This is going to be a chapter in a book, as soon as I get to the ending I'll start....
Paul R. Muth ~ email@example.com
POSTED: 01/17/13 1430 hours
Just fell upon your site a few minutes ago, and don't have the time now to go through it. I worked in "Pumps & Wells" from maybe June of "57" to maybe March of "59". All that I remember was that mydivisionCO was awarrantofficer named Nugent. I do remember Bob Hope, I was on duty for his show, but I did see him on the golf course; also remember the Harlem Globetrotters. I also did play a lot ofpinochle, but is was always in the"GalleyMaintenance" shop.
B J Lynster UTW2 ~ firstname.lastname@example.org
POSTED: 01/23/13 0630 hours
My name is Obie Grindstaff, was stationed in Port Lyautey, May 1955 thru December, 1956. I was attached to the main base in Admin. Dept. was a Personnel 3rd class working in Education Office for W. J. Ricketts, Jr CPN and Lt. Morse (wave) her husband was CW4 have wonderful memories, Rabat,Tangiers, the liberty in Lyautey, was able to visit several countries would like to share memories with anyone during that time period..The EM club was a great hangout for me as as town.~ email@example.com