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Noxubee Crest

Navy Days and Navy Nights


By Greg Loney

One day about 18 months ago, while checking my e-mail, I noticed one from Jim Gabrisch asking if I was the Greg Loney who served on the USS Noxubee. Well this was a voice from the past, so I wasted no time in answering and asking just how things have been going for the past 30 years? Well after a couple of e-mails Jim (Gabby) told me about the Noxubee web site, and Paul's (Here after refereed to as Polack) efforts. Since then I have heard from past friends I served with on the Old Ship. Melbourn (Willie) Willis, AKA Ray, John (Duck) Wolford, Ron Coneybeer, George Hahn and a few others I knew 30 years ago.

I was assigned to the Noxubee in June of 1969 and completed my tour in August of 1972 when I was discharged from the Navy. So Wally Barsell had me beat for longest tour by about 6 months. I, like Wally also saw lots of good men come and go during my tour. One was High Lined to the USS Long Beach in 1969, on our way to Viet Nam. The only ship of that size I can honestly say, "jumped on top of the water and disappeared over the horizon". One crewman was killed on the streets of Chicago while on leave Porter or Parker I believe, I received the message while in Little Creek, VA. I had made Radioman by then. I also remember a shipmate who climbed down between the wharf and the ship and refused to come out, we finally coaxed him out and it was the last we saw of him. That was in Rota, Spain.

For any that are interested, my last contact with Mark Wentworth was in 1973 and I believe he was working as a radio communicator dealing with the port authorities in Seattle, WA. And Larry Clayton I saw a few times in 1973 & 74 he was a carpenter in Orange County, CA. My first wife and I went to visit Willie in Pinetop, AZ back in 1973. But there are a few I haven't heard about like: Howard Justice - RD from West (by God) Virginia, my old card partner. Or Bo Leporati - RM from northern Louisiana (sportsman's paradise) I believe Robert Dosch was also from Louisiana. I did hear about Al Sabourin, guess it is true the good do die young. Miss ya mate, God bless. He helped Ron Coneybeer and myself out once with some Marines, Ron had a cast on each of his arms as usual. Doug Dunaway - EN Wild and fun in Subic Bay, or Bob Livingston (Stone) I just saw his picture on Gallery #6 I think, I don't remember seeing him without something in his mouth. The man could eat. We had a good time at a fair in Subic and at the Beach. Jim Krause - BM, The first man I had seen on a Navy ship with a beard, a burn, "ur ass". Paul Orr- QM, I remember one time on the beach with him in Subic, kind of wild. Freddie Farrington - BM, Freddie was the first person I met when I crossed the gangplank, Pretty Intimidating. How about Gordy Delp - CS, We met with a few others in a bar in Pearl Harbor, met a mom and daughter pair and had a great time, I think Howard is still sore. George Hahn - BM, I remember getting tattoos in Hong Kong and mine still looks like a "jailhouse" job. Craig James - BM, The man carried a Jim Bowie knife. There was BM2 Harris, who is not on the roster for 1969, but he was the Petty Officer of the watch when we were mined, Paul Orr was QM, I was worm of the watch. Man Harris was something, he knew exactly what to do. And Bo Leporati was sending "flash" traffic while the Captain, (Cass) was dictating. Me, I was doing whatever the CO told me to do (scared). Roger Hurt - BM, He spotted the two swimmers, he deserved the commendation he received. LTJG Flick - A good officer, always treated his people right. Christenbury & Pettyman - EM1's Good guys, give em hell. Selig - BM, he and I had a smoker in forward cargo hole on our way to Nam. Al Ulrich - From up north, he couldn't get enough sun. Mel Short - GM, A 60's throw back who loved skin-diving and listening to his blues in the aft TV room. Charlie Mihulka - Lovin the NAVY. Doug Potter - Playing his guitar and party time. John Stanfield - What can I say "CRAZY". Dan Mass, Polack, Al Edmonson, Tom Dunnigan, Fred Stover, Rick Landers, all good men to serve with.

In closing I can only hope to hear from or see some of the old shipmates log on to the Noxubee site. I won't make the reunion this time around, but for those who do say hi to all, I saw Capt. Cass's picture and I may have recognized him, but the rest of you guys are getting old, I'm glad I age gracefully like the Captain. To all, from this Louisiana Boy, Ya.ll take care. I work for a liven but I'm liven to fish, and Louisiana is the place for that.