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Who is Joe Frasketi. Links to other Sites. Space Cover Collecting Basics. Home Page What's New? Can't Find what you're looking for? Traveled to most of the downrange stations and ships as a comm tech over the years working for Bill Brashear and Bob Boska. Sailed on a very rough trip on the Arnold from Hawaii to dry dock near San Francisco.
Would love to continue to get emails from old friends. During the early 70's. My function was to do the Purchasing of all food Products items and specialty products,consumables and dry goods for the Eastern Test Range through out the Bahamas,Antigua, Ascension Island and Mahe in the Seychelle Islands. Jerry Ledford my Supervisor actually presented me with a certificate called Range Rats International as I was responsible to manage all the purchasing at the commissary out port and strategic purchasing at Patrick Airforce Base,Florida.
Shipments were sent by air and sea. I would travel to these bases and outposts every six weeks and also get take part in operating the food services operations One of my functions was to develop equipment or food items that could be used on these island to reduce costs and still maintain excellent food quality standard for the feeding of the employees and contractors at these venues. Was on launch team for Apollo My first assignment was Carter Cay in the newly opened Comm Center.
Left to hire into PAA picket ships. I worked in Supply for Panam as a teenager, first for a summer at Antigua, and then for a year at San Salvador. I worked indoors at Antigua, but was in Shipping and Receiving at San Sal, driving a truck and forklift, mostly loading and unloading Cs, but also delivering ballistic cameras to and from their setup sites.
I loved the work. Loved my duty here but moved back to the mainland to get married. Stationed there from dec 72 to dec 73 with special operations of th. I believe it was on May 22, Worked at Trinidad site, from til Enjoyed the work and many friendships formed there.
Would enjoy hearing from anyone that was there at that time to share memories and what they are doing now. Wow, that was a long time ago. Retired at the Cape in I remember the "never go Navajo" and the "run a way Snark", so any of you? I was with and remember Dan Kovalchuk.
Gene Bergeron was the manager of PanAm services. It was an exciting time for me. Just checking in to see what I have been missing the last couple of years.
Catching up on old memories from Turk, Antigua and Carter Cay. PAFB, Technician and casual hire He would always love to talk about the island and the good people he met. I served at NAvfac in in Radio. Roy Sutton and I were from Jersey. I am looking for any information about my dad during this period. I believe he was part of the missions on the Vanguard.
Don't have a lot of information about his job but he was fresh out of the Air Force where he was a cryptographer. Not sure this relates to his Vanguard job. I was 1 of 5 women stationed there at the time. On Ascension, I was there when we were the last station to track SKYLAB - it should have been a visual as it burned up but all my pictures just show the clouds it was behind. Many many stories I can tell and I have some photos I could go on, but I am currently planning a 2 or 3 month trip in early to go back and explore more.
Would love to hear from others in the late 70's. Sent temp assignment to Eleuthra in July I am changing my Comcast E-mail to jgentry gmail. I will also keep the Comcast E-mail address for a few weeks to ensure a I do not lose any E-mail. I have tried to reply to "juhlb bellsouth. Can any one help? I was trying to find my much earlier entry to the RR book. Sorry to read that Wally Tubell? He hired me in I will try his Email next. Worked on the range thru Would be interested in hearing from anybody who had passed by my way in the past.
Sweetin June 28, - June 29, I received this emal from Don Akerberg yesterday saying: Maury was a great man and may he rest in peace and may his peace be eternal. When an obit is published I will post it. However,I do recall Narvea Gardner, a black man who taught me much about dignity and perseverance.
I transferred briefly to the Radar Engineering Dept. My memories of MTP could fill a large book. Thanks for the site. I WENT to work in I would still be working if things were the same. Those were the best years of my life. Met my husband, John Thorne, Leader of Firing. All the stories will be with me forever. Arnold and I was on it from to when I transfer to Grand Turk. I was a Radar tech. Arnold from - , and in Grand Turk - My son was born in Grand Turk.
Was on the Range from December - June We sailed to Cape Canaveral first stopping in NJ for work on the ship. Retired in SC in Best two years of my life. Met a NW lady and we are still together. I was a fisheries Biologist and ran research programs on the Columbia R. It would be great to hear from old friends!
All Ship Troops and Range Rats are welcome. Last year we had over 70 people. Discount food and drinks with name tag that you get when you sign in. I am looking forward to seeing everyone. Viewing the RR Sign in book, noticed I have an old email address. Thanks to Lee Barn for his email RE: King Halikman which got me back into interest in the RR history and Joe's great accomplishment with this site.
I worked in Antigua and Grand Turk back in the early 80's. Very much looking forward to seeing a most beautiful place. I lived in Antigua from to while my dad worked at the tracking station there. He was definitely an Eastern Test Range rat for most of his life. He was working for CSC Raytheon when he retired.
After he retired he moved to Huntsville, Alabama. Unfortunately, he passed away in at the age of We had many incredible adventures on land and sea during the 6 years of my childhood that I spent on Antigua. My dad really enjoyed the work and the people he worked with on the islands up and down the Eastern Test Range. Range rats are definitely a special breed. It was fifty years this month when my new bride of 6 month that we packed all of our belongings in the rear seat of our Ford and headed for Cocoa, Florida./p>
I lived on the Hatchet Bay plantation, Eleuthera in - My father, Major Raymond Ohlhues was the base commander then. I have since returned only once in and was so saddened by the condition not only of the base but also Hatchet Bay.
When I was there in '05 the infrastructure was tenuous at best. Perhaps it has improved in the past 12 years. I love Eleuthera and hope to go back again Someday. I worked at GBI Telemetry n tended bar I also went to Walker Cay to track the launches I received this email 26 Nov. His family misses him dearly. Dale wrote this in the Range Rat sign-in Book back in May about his work downrange: And he further wrote this comment in Oct. Just got back from Grand Turk, the island is a lot different from Pan Am base bldgs.
Navy base is a Community College. I worked in the comm center on San Sal from Feb '62 until the summer of '63 and then Eleuthera until May of ' He later worked at the Cape. He went on to get a college degree , then returned to this area and coached high school football for many years.
He was a first class guy. I was with Bendix Nasa on ascension Ray deely was my roommate. MR Wainwright was island admin and had a lovely daughter Deborah. She worked as the scy for for our Nasa director. IS she the same Deborah now in SC? Was Pan-Am supply Staying in Georgetown this visit and hope to have WiFi conn.
Well remember those good-old-days on the range. My good friend and old range rat Jim Velia passed this week. He had an Ercoupe air plane in Melbourne that I learned to fly. Eventually went back to school for an engineering degree and ended up working for Lockheed in California.
I hadn't had many friends for that long. I was 17 yrs old. I'm working on my story starting now. It involves some interesting memories. I worked for some time for a contractor who delivered supplies to various tracking stations. After sinking went to for work for Pan Am as a security guard. After my 45 went off by accident, was assigned to parts supply GBI , I think the only air conditioned facility on the range.
I'm going to write a story for my web page specifically on the sinking incident. I worked on Ascension two times. In the comm center where we ran Morse code traffic to other station and ships, did some air traffic control, handled some classified documents and played with Sammy the meanest tom cat that ever lived.
When we weren't at work we were drinking and diving. Not drinking and driving I miss the place but no way I will ever be back.
Not too many of us left - I will have a beer in honor of those who are still alive this evening. I was there in 62 and I was stationed on Grand Turk from to I was an Engineman 3rd class. I worked and performed maintenance on the diesel generators. I did not know Jack well but we were on Asc at the same time in early 70s. Also I believe Jack was an early RR.
Still here as one of The Originals. It was located near the weather rocket launch site and just above where Jack was last seen. I made the marker, but the sea took its tole years later. Someone attempted to reconstruct the wording, but got the wrong name from the fragments. Worked aboard the Vandenberg from mid to mid I was aboard during the Aleutian cruises, the Japan resupply stop, the Kwajalein area stop over and of course the Midway Island refuel stop.
I fondly remember my time aboard. Range Rat Wallace J. He was an original space pioneer supporting the earliest days of America's space program. He passed away peacefully with Mom and I by his side Saturday night 09 April , and we are so thankful he is no longer suffering. He lived a long and full life with no regrets, and will be missed by many.
He and his wife "Sammy" visited me at my home in , we have always tried to keep in touch, even if just with a Christmas card or a email from time to time. He will be missed. Ah, the memories come flooding back. Was there when John Glenn made his three orbits, and we listened in on two of the passes as he spoke with the CapComm guys.
Also have many memories of Rebel, and had several pictures of him. One was a classic of him right outside the side door, with his feet up on that concrete step, waiting for someone to give him a beer. If he was ignored too long, he would step into the bar and nip whoever was sitting on a bar stool, to get their attention. Charlie Elgas told me he was killed by an irate male donkey when Rebel was making advances of the other guy's honey.
Since that all happened about 55 years ago, memories have faded. All Range Rats are welcome. All that you need to do is show up. Looking forward to seeing many of you again. Got to do go on the crawler, on CX39A before the shuttle ever got off the ground.
I was there when Challenger was lost, it was my birthday as well. I also worked in Facility Engineering and renovated alot of facilities on Antigua and Ascension. I made lots of wonderful friends and had a great career! He would get on the range liner and fly down range to cut range rats hair.
I remember him from San Sal in the 50's and 60's When I came up range I would go to his shop in Melbourne near the mall. He always talked about the range rats he knew.
He fit right in and was a very good freind bill bailey. Doing test equipment maintenance. Breaks my heart to see the latest pictures of the gutted tracking station now. He was at the Tech Lab from He passed away in October , but luckily got to celebrate the first manned lunar landing before he left. He was an optical technician and often went "down range.
He brought a big piece of amethyst from Brazil, was there a location in Brazil? He work on the tracking telescopes down range. Worked for BFEC from Bermuda and Canary Island as Logistics Asst. I was an Engineman and worked on the generators down the hill. I got my electronics engineering degree and worked in Engineering, following in dad's footsteps. I've worked all the instrumentation areas, but mostly Weather after Went into Project Management later, and when we lost the Engineering side of the contract in , worked as an Integration Lead and Analyst on the Operations side until I retired last April.
Been awhile since I last signed-in. She had a very aggressive form of cancer that took her much too soon. We were unable to go to the last one due to her illness. I have had great support from my long time downrange friends since her passing. Looking forward to attend the Reunion. Recently heard that Leo Obad had passed away. I have just learned of the passing of George Earnshaw. He passed away Sept 4, I was a Range Rate back in the 60's. I worked on San Salvador and Ascension.
Great fun, wish it would of lasted for way more time. Was a welcome guest at Harry's House in Recife. Time is flying, 77 now. I've tried to make it e-z for signers to select either the RR book or the guest book but misteaks so happen Wife of Joseph "Joe" Robinson. Joe Passed away I have posted here before with my website, but my old website host closed down.
My new site address is http: Sad to say - received word today that Arthur "Art" Hensley passed away Wednesday morning. Flew as pilot on many C flights Patrick, Antigua, Ascension from until People were great and had a good time. Hi Joe, Say, are you going to attend the 'range rat' reunion this weekend??? Sure would like to meet you. I am bringing a number of binders of down- range material, plus photos, etc. This will be my first and most likely only time I will be able to attend the reunion, lots going on here in the frozen tundra.
I am planning my return visit to Ascension for Sept. Was there in 97 for a few days, hope to spend at least two weeks there this visit.
It will be my 50th anniversary of arriving there in 66 in supply. Friends, Dick Marchant went to the stars in August Great friend and most honest man I have come across. I remember you Ed. I remember when you and Sterling were sent to Asc. Great time in our lives and a great time to live in Ant. Worked telemetry, , on Antigua and Ascension. I have fond memories of the people and the work, but also the fishing, diving and the hiking on Ascension.
I was laid off in '72 and have worked in Avionics ever since. My father was James E Martin. He worked for Pan Am. He was at the Cape from I know at one time he worked for RCA, and that is who he was working for in they lost the contract. Dad died in I'm a range rat dependent.
Dad was stationed on Antigua again immediately prior to his quick passing from fulminating lung cancer The family first moved downrange to accompany him to Eleuthera when I was 6. We followed that several years later with a move to Antigua. Dad sent me back to the states to finish my last year of high school and on to college, but throughout those later years in school, the military and during later career years, I continued to travel to the islands at every opportunity.
Many fond memories of all those stations and the invaluable lessons I learned from being immersed in those diverse cultural experiences. Had an absolute blast spending a long summer on Grand Turk where the days were whiled away diving with Turks Turtles thanks to Frank Thompson and Leon Lacy for taking a teenager under their respective wings , and learning how to fly that Cessna Would love to connect with anyone who knew Dad or would like to share anecdotes from those incredible golden days.
We arrived there just in time for the great northeast electrical blackout of November, Being an electronics technician, I was assigned to the transmitter room to maintain the HF transmitters and set up what was called an Audio and Keying Line Matrix to designate who used what transmitter based on voice or data transmission. The two other fellows assigned there were Frank Hood and Tom Revell.
We divided responsibilities according to which systems each one felt the most comfortable dealing with if it failed. All of us finished our classroom training well before the construction crews finished assembling the ship enough for us to train on-board. So we spent a lot of time in the Quincy shipyard first aid facility doing whatever we could to pass the time. Many stories could be told about that experience. Once we all got on board, the first thing was to iron out any problems in the systems.
The first major problem was that the entire intercommunications network was wired wrong. Our wiring technicians were Frank Benedetto sp and Bo Moore. They had to re-wire the entire communications main frame. In the transmitter room our VHF equipment was well proven military gear, but the HF transmitters were a new design for the required 10KW output.
Some problems involved things that we could correct, but we were constantly having to call out the manufacturer's field representative because other problems were things that only he could resolve. Then there were the antennas on the surface deck, five of them: The theory was, we could use the five antennas with five different transmitters and have the sixth transmitter for a spare. It was a different story at sea. First, just in the shipyard we had to set up warnings for people not to walk between the two helicals when they were operating.
The energy from the 10KW output would heat up metal objects in a person's pockets and cabling strung around the deck. Also, the coils in those antennas were protected by a fiberglass cylinder that was sealed from outside air and filled with an inert gas. But when we went to sea the salt water spray would collect on the cylinders and would ionize enough to cause an electrical arc between the coils and the protective cylinder. The resulting hole made the antenna essentially useless.
To make matters worse, the aft LP antenna was situated right above the exhaust stack for the ship's engines. The resulting carbon laden soot collected on the antenna elements so that whenever the transmitter was operating in the evening or at night you could see corona all over the antenna. Corona is electrical arcing between the antenna elements. It created so much noise in the transmitted signal that the antenna became useless. The bridge LP was not directly over the stack, but if the wind was in the right direction it was close enough to collect some of the soot too.
It suffered the same fate as the aft one. So we were down to just the forward LP antenna. On the bright side, we had five spare transmitters. After a number of proposed solutions were tried, the final decision was to scrap the helicals and use the LPs as long as they would work.
Then clean them when the ship was in port. Meanwhile, Frank Hood and I had found two young women at church that were best friends. He married one of them and I married the other one a week later Other areas had their problems too, but by the time we sailed for Florida there wasn't much left to fix. But the reasoning was not to worry about it too much because the Redstone and Mercury were both being outfitted with satellite communications to replace the HF and the Vanguard would return for that upgrade too.
Then the Apollo part of the Eastern Test Range went up for re-bid. RCA was unable to take me back when I finished school, so I went on to work for two aircraft engine manufacturers and retired in Also, I knew Clyde Randolph, who has the last entry on the Eleuthera "page".
Wright sent the Museum a lovely framed photo of a local he worked with. However I have not been able to contact Mr. Wright to thank him and let him know we are looking for Mr. Louis Williams, the man in the photo.
I would appreciate any information on MR. Wright so that I can let him know we received the package and are locating the subject in the photo. There was no return address on the package that had been opened by Customs, so if there was a letter inside it was "misplaced" by the customs department. Thank you for any help. We have had quite a few ex-servicemen come to visit Grand Turk over the last few years. They have shared their stories and photos for which we are very thankful.
If anyone would like to contact me regarding their time on Grand Turk, please do so! I've lived on Grand Turk for 20 years, and seeing photos others have shared not much has changed!
Visit our website, and please feel free to contact me! Worked at Kwajelein missile range and - Also made 43 business trips to Kwajalein Update to e-mail address. Also on Facebook at Range Rat Group. Worked at Ascension Island from , then again From to , did temporary duty on Guam, Bermuda, Dakar, and Guam. Was on the Guam deactivation team. I've been looking for Wilfred Bill Schmidt who worked on the Gen.
Arnold in Weather as a Technician. If you have been in contact with Bill or know where he is please let me know. I'd like to get in contact with Bill. I worked on the water distillation plant on Grand Turk on year Anyonr else out there? Hi Joe just spoke to Gordon Clark he gave me this web page. Would love to keep in touch with friends. First Three-man Apollo Earth Orbit. First Manned Saturn V Launch. Apollo 9 Mar 03, Earth Orbit Mission First Manned Flight of Lunar Module.
I would like to know if chaunc dunn is still kicking. I don't have many details; he was there for the John Glenn landing. Anyone out there on Grand Turk during that time? She was well known loved by all who knew her. Kay will be missed by all who knew her. I was the detachment commander of the weather station for my last 6 months.
I was responsible for onsite maintenance and rebuilds on radar and telemetry on trips ranging from 2 to 6 weeks. Many great fishing trips. Met a lot of good people. My brother Jim is deceased I was on the Vandy Worked in the NAC Center. I have some pics I would like to post. Went back to School, got B. I hope this is the right place!! I hope this helps!!! I worked on the Vandy and the Arnold from to I wrote software for the NAV computer.
Best years of my professional career and the best people. Moved to NM in South Africa was paradise for white Americans back then. Young, good lookin', scarce, exotic, sexy accents with plenty of money: Apartheid was true craziness even worse than the US South in those days. We polished it every day though. Unfortunately most of the vehicles carrying our transponder didn't go as far as SA or were too far north and they didn't need it for later Apollo or anything else after all.
Waste of money I guess but it was OK for us. Wonder what happened to George Jackson, Don Mergenthal, Wayne Dickey and many others whose names escape my memory at the moment. Am sad to report that Robert E. Olsen, better known as Bob Olsen passed away 31 March , after a courageous battle with cancer. Was on the range from to If I get an obituary I will post it. KSC Video Systems Cape Canaveral TML This year we are getting together June We started this the year they sank the Vandy as an artificial reef off of Key West.
We usually get attendees. Travelled frequently averaging a move roughly every 18 months , living in 15 states plus Washington, D. Returned to Tacoma, WA. After 30 days I was assigned to communications section on Grand Turk. While in South Africa, I engaged in sport sedan racing my own car , I got bored early on, dropped out of sports sedan racing and entered a different car in an FIA-sanctioned Rallye in Rhodesia, whereupon myself and my navigator were the only "yanks" in the Rallye, even so, I was able to place 7th overall Rhodesian Flame Lily Rallye.
This Rallye officially opened the new highway to Victoria Falls. Also got a chance to get-up-close and personal with wild animals both on-land and on the Zambesie river. After spending 2-years in South Africa, upon the closing of Sta After leaving Argentina, the Vanguard was routed to Brazil for an extended period of time, in order to fulfill a long-overdue maintenance requirement. Everyone working for WU in was fired nationwide when WU declared bankruptcy; this included everyone, along with lower, middle and upper management.
On many occasions, it was not uncommon to to drive over miles a week. Woke up this morning thinking about guys I worked with on the Crusader and Sentry. Anyone have info on Mike Allen. He was CCO on both ships. Note change in email address. Its a new one. My question is this: How many downrange sites were there in my time period? There's a fellow who was there the same time I was, and he keeps posting things about Site 3. I had been to Sites 1, 2, 4, 6, and 7, but never heard of Site 3 or any reference to it.
Am I wrong in saying there was no Site 3 , or does he know something I don't? Please help, and thanks. I arrived as a new hire in GBI in November of Since then, I did field service for Triad Systems Corp. I am now retired from civil service with 33 total years. I was also a helicopter pilot in the Army National Guard for 19 years, and am retired from that also, total 21 years military service.
Also, I owned several boats on GBI. One I Built on the beach, an 18 ft. Last but not least was a 13 foot Boston Whaler. The fishing was good around GBI and I caught a lot, including that seven foot sailfish hanging above the bar at the Club Rondevous. I'm posting this info for Jim Pollard.
This is to inform everyone that Lyle Dillard passed away after a battle with Cancer. He passed away on the 9th of December in Atlanta. It was very pleasant to see the names of so many that I knew or worked with, and not so pleasant to see the number that is no longer with us.
Looking back on my career from a 20 year old new hire in to when I retired in , I would not have been happy and satisfied working at any other field. I feel I helped contribute a small piece of the history made at the Cape.
Some of the remembered events were: Upon witnessing this test, Allen Sheppard afterward made his famous comment: There were such things as the Apollo I capsule fire, killing the three astronauts; setting at a Cape Support console in the Range Control Center and watching the Challenger explosion on TV. I had nightmares for many months afterward. This and other events led to me being diagnosed with PTSD in I had been retired for a while when my wife , my mother and I were watching the Columbia's return and seeing the big "meteor" fireball on the network TV coverage.
This gave rise to a lot of bad emotions as I had experienced with the challenger. Several years past before I could even talk about these two events. Those RR that I remember, either having worked with them, or having contacted them through various events, or they just sharing being there at the same time. That entire group was a hard working dedicated bunch.
I believe I had the best administrative support ever. Sallie passed every security inspection and inventory with flying colors.
One individual that made numerous significant contributions to the range radars was A. Peter gained his radar experience working in an engineering group in Germany. He was well acquainted with Werner von Braun. Peter could tell of some interesting event and issues that were encountered in his work in Germany. He was a great gentlemen and extremely knowledgeable; very pleasant to work with. I will long remember him. Mac would be deployed TDY to the ship during the special mission.
Learned a lot from that experience and enjoyed it very much. I still experience the "launch stress" whenever I watch a launch. But, working at a career like that was worth it.
I was stationed on Ascension with Det from Feb to Jan Today Bill had put this entry in my Guest Book, which is for stamp collectors and non- range rats , evidently he overlooked the Range Rat Sign-In Book.
The 1st marriage conducted on base. Built house just outside main gate on Queens land sqautter. Became party house after Club closed. Provided electric power to 5 homes Larry Custer,Larry Curry. Jack Tar West End, etc.. The entire beach area had been over grown with Australian Pines. The beach hut was still standing. You ould not see the fuel tanks from the beach. The pier was still standing. The beachside sand airstrip was not visible for the trees.
The beach road was narrow from the trees. It was like nature had taking it back to pre-base time. The base had deteriorated in appearance. Jack Tar was ramsacked and empty. Last heard that Disney now occupies the base as a recording studio for it's Carribean Pirates movies. It has Security Guards. There is a paved road from Freeport and power now out to the homes. I can still remember the openings of Freeports Casinos and the 1st group of workers who arrived at the base from London as their plane was to big for Freeport's air strip.
Oh to be back there again.. Those were the days guys and only we can brag about them Best to all you RR's. Stay safe, healthy and happy.. Met one of my wives on Antigua Thai woman name Dang She died Live in China now Had a good time. Originally signed in July At this time, I am just reporting the death of Kerry Coughlin who was on Ascension while I was there in the early s. His obit is a bit in error as he worked in the motor pool on Ascension. His Obit reads a follows: He worked for Pan American Airlines for several years providing radar tracking on Ascension Island, and after attending the Naval Academy in Florida, he began commercial flight training.
He shared countless amazing stories of the adventures he experienced in numerous foreign countries. After Kerry's retirement, he moved to La Paz, Baja California, and continued with his love of fishing, and started a new Astronomy hobby.
He traveled around the world on many excursions and cruises witnessing solar and lunar eclipses. He became known in the Astronomy world as "the man in Baja" as he studied and provided information on occulations. Was on the NASA site in 73 My future wife from NZ flew in by charter from England and we were married there and lived in Two Boats I think we were the 33rd couple to be married on Ascension We have many fond memories of the island and the people.
I can muster mental images of others, but no other names. I apologize for my limitations. I subsequently worked for Electronic Cummunications, Inc. I am retired and continue to live in Los Angeles as near to the sea as I can afford. It's pleasantly surprising to hear of you and your history project, Joe.
Sailed with Terry Ash. Was on the TTR Don was a long time down range rat and worked in Maintenance and Management. Don was 83 years old. There will be no services. Enjoy reading all of these entries. Makes me remember my dad's stories. Marcia's dad made this entry in this RR book in March , as follows: Cape and Down Range.: Many Years of working with and for wonderful, talented,dedicated people on a "real", meaningful functional space effort.
After all the dynamic years working for the space effort with "real" people; it was a totally negative experience. Would like to hear fm anyone in that time frame. At the present time I work in the Defense Industry. Ascension surely was an interesting experience, and is now a source of many great stories. Or how can I get a replacement? I was assigned to Ascension Island from January to January Ralph Jackson who was station manager was truly a pioneer that did everything possible to keep the radio station on the air.
I have fond memories of this island that will stay in my mind forever. My father was Bill Carson. He passed away several years ago. He was also on Ascension, I think in the late 50's and we lived in Eleuthera in the early 60's. I am enjoying seeing some familiar names on this website - only wish I had known about it earlier.! Would like to hear from others. Hoping to attend the next reunion.
There were only a few RCA guys when I arrived so I was responsible for most of the electronics equipment. Later, I moved more into the radar and other data processing equipment. At the time, no missiles had come as far as GTK, so we tracked the aircraft with the transponder in order to keep the equipment tuned to a good working order. We actually tracked it for about half a minute before being told by the Cape to disengage from tracking. I really enjoyed my time on Turk.
Wonderful meals and camaraderie. There I did many trips down range on all the stations and finally to St. It's been fify years since I walked out of Hangar and boarded the old C for the trip of my lifetime - 33 years on the downrange. Remembering lots of good men there and lots of great times, some like living a dream. I sure would like to have it all to do over again. I can only remember two guys when I was there, by the names of Carl Sassnet and Santore and by Sears who was the mgr of the Purse radar station.
I remember when Pan Am would have our lunches on our private beach etc and I was a member of the Gold Rock Flying Club, where we bought two light planes, one was a Sesna in good flying condition and one was an Eronca Chief which we restore the whole body for flying condition. I spent a month at Antigua and another month at Grand Turk. Then I was assigned to the where we covered the first two sub-orbit shots. I was transferred to the Rose Knot and we covered the John Glenn mission from off the coast of Liberia.
Up to my leaving, I had most sea time of anyone. Only one person broke my record since then. I was stationed at Grand Turk from Nov December We worked closely with the Pan American tracking station located at the other end of the island designated as Thinker 7.
At the time, this was considered by the Navy as Undesirable duty. Quite a change from what it is now. Great skin diving and good reefs. I worked for FEC in the communications room.
My daughter recommended this web site. I don't have alot time at the present, but have bookmarked you. Will get back with you later. Just an update to current location. Caught in contract reduction in Oct Now i pass my time on line helping beginners write macros for Excel projects.
They sent me a telegram to report to Patrick AFB to attend a 2 week class I then worked at Range Safety at Cape Canaveral.. Then Werner Von Braun came with his succesful Redstone launch I then transferred to Grand Bahama Island tracking station to work in Telemetry I then often went to Walker's Cay with another gentleman to work at a tracking van for Cape Canaveral launches.. All of this was in the late 's and early 's I remember while working at Cape Canaveral of North American trying to launch a missile called the Navajo It failed each and every time trey tried to launch..
Either scrubbed or it blew up.. So it became know as the 'NeverGo' The North American employees where told to take a vacation eventually.. The rumor was that while on vacation they where all laid off and that was the end of the NeverGo missile project..
The first launch attempt, in November , failed after 26 seconds of flight. Ten failed launches followed, before another got off successfully, on 22 March , for 4 minutes, 39 seconds of flight. A 25 April attempt exploded seconds after liftoff, while a 26 June flight lasted only 4 minutes, 29 seconds. Worked at TV Operations for a lot of years and then my group was moved to another company. I finished working as a supervisor for a Antenna Maintenance Group.
Hello, I am the granddaughter of John J Facker who spoke a lot about down range while I was growing up. My grandfather has been passed away for 14 years but I still think of him daily and miss him to this day.
I would love if anyone on here had worked with him and if you could fill me in on any stories about my grandfather so that I can add them to our family history for all of his grandchildren and great grandchildren. Joe Collins, Joe Tudder deceased..
I'M going to GBI on vac this april. My best to one and all. Found your Range Rats site for the first time this morning and saw some familiar names from yesteryear working on the Eastern Test Range.
Attempts to email Tom at the email address shown for some of his message entries came back as Error Messages. Could not find an email for Wally. Any contact info on these two would be greatly appreciated. I also remember Tim Eastland when he was on San Salvador. I first reported there as a subcable tech in January Three weeks later a construction crew dug up and severed the subcable.
What a harrowing experience for a new kid on the block. Fortunately being new I had been studying the tech manuals and easily found the instructions for cable restoration. My fellow tech was Bob Johnson from Alabama who had a pitbull named Trouble and played Elvis Presley songs night and day. Would like to hear from any of the Range Rats who may remember me He spoke very fondly of his time on Grand Bahama Island, and now that he is gone, I would love to connect with anyone who knew him.
Just an email update and to check and see if anyone knows where I can find Shirley Edmonson, she was the wife of Harold McGoo Edmonson. They met in Pretoria, SA. Trained at the Cape for a month and then flew down to GBI. Worked for Jim Falkenstein and my bosses name was Lou. Operated my amateur radio station as VP7NN from my barracks.
Used to spend weekends swimming at the beach and going down to the West end. Freeport was a logging camp at the time. Almost got chewed up by a barracuda while swimming once. Best wishes to all. They didn't want to let the Russians get ahold of any of the guidance system. Built chain radar system that extended from Cape Canaveral to Puerto Rico. Tracked missile tests, and a manned space flight. Enjoyed the mission and crewmembers immensly. One of the highlights of my Air Force career. I was chief of the water plant there at Grand Turk Is.
I rode a blue Matchless motorcycle around the island and in the surf. Was also a regular at "sick call" at the Conch Club on Sundays. I was one of the Turks Turtle Diving Club and enjoyed diving in free time. I helped outfit Cs with telemetry gear. I soon transfered to Tel-2 on the cape maintaining and operating telemetry equipment in support of all launches from Cape Canaveral.
In , I was hired by Systems Engineering laboratories in Ft. Here, I helped develop the tracking software for the development of Sikorsky's black Hawk Helicopter. Great experience, memories and people. Set up and worked the Transmitter site there down close to the old Research station.
Went back to Mayaguana in Have pictures of most stations where I worked. Greetings you all, ETR was the best time in my life. I worked in comm, and was at sta 4, 91, 12 and 13 [before they closed it]. Would like to hear from all of you. I was a communications cryptograpic and C Band uplink engineer. I was part of the first shakedown team, and had many friends who unfortunately I have lost contact with.
I was hired away for a classified project involving an Active airborn Electronic Warfare system and spent the next three years with the Navy as a civilian in SE Asia.
The site is fantastic A lot of you spent far more time than I did, and I somehow envy you all a bit. Best of luck to all the current survivors Joe, you have done a remarkable job, putting this together and keeping it together all these years.
I worked for RCA from through We were installing computers for U. I've enjoyed scanning the comments on this site and found several people that I worked with a long time ago. My father, Everett James, worked Eleuthera AAFB in the mid to late 50s and loved the area very muchprobably much more so as he met my mother in the Bahamas.
He was one great father and a sharp fellow! I know he enjoyed the old timers reunions when he could get to them! This is to let you know that we lost him August and his lovely wife Peggy followed him the very end of October. As a family two daughters, son-in-laws and several grandchilden we are taking them both back to Eleuthera, to the beaches, to where they spent their happiest honeymoon years together. I'm looking for information of where they may have spent most of their time.
Mitchell A New Zealander who had polio. We have descriptions of the beaches, Queens Hwy, Gouverners Harbor, where they shopped for groceries, etc, and we are hoping to gain more information. If anyone has any info, photos and stories on Everett James, it would be so helpful.
We want to put together memories for this trip as they never got to return for an anniversary. Thank you so much! Your Website Editor Hi..
I signed on to the program and was sent to a nav training school in Calif. After about 6 weeks of nav. I stayed on the ship in dry dock as a watchman until we got into the water.
I am 88 years old now and have problems remembering the dates and some places. From there we went down to our home base in Florida. I enjoyed it very much,especially the chow. Set down table with napkins and silver and a menu with steak and lobster on it.
I tell you one thing.. I resigned after the landing, I think, or was it the fly around on Christmas day to work at a TV station in my home town. Anyway it was a good ride and I enjoyed it. I knew of no one except in the Nav. Anyone in the Nav. Thanks and God be with you. I am relative of John -Red- Durham. He was married with my aunt Estela Rodriguez. Sceptical about climate change? You might still like a green economy Emma Pinchbeck.
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