Sid's N T I N S Locker
It's A Small World
by Andrew W. Buck
November 05, 1998

After I got out of the Navy, back in 75, I put all my bubble head memories behind and moved on. Then in 1997 I stumbled across a submarine BBS and life changed. After reading a few posts, I realized that once a Submariner, always a Submariner, (I'd tell you where I stole that quote, but to h*ll with it).

BR (Barbee) posted an article on the BBS this past year and asked for some input from those of us on the board. I responded to his e-mail address and noticed that he might live close. I mentioned it to him and we found out that indeed we did live near each other. He invited me to lunch with himself and two other fellows., as luck would have it, I work in Boston, and that was where the three of them were going for some grog, lies, and, oh yeah, lunch.

One of the fellows besides BR was a guy by the name of Harry Parker and the third one was Bob Pleau, sometimes known as "Hoppy Poppy". While comparing notes over some Barley Pops, Bob and I realized that we were both on the Jefferson during the same time period. Although he was an 'O' we both kind of remembered the other, but it had been roughly twenty-five years (he was Aweps, and I was a 3rd class mess crank). We both had clearer recollections of several other people and several shipboard events. It was a fine lunch, whatever it was that I ett…

Since that lunch, I've enjoyed reading Bob's posts, and I looked for his mug in the Torsk photos. I was even hoping he could make it to the 4th TJ reunion, but it was not to be.

Last week I was rooting through some old files in the basement and stumbled across my 618 qual card. I glanced through it and got real excited when I decoded one scrawl at the bottom. I scanned in both sides, and e-mailed them to the officer who signed the back as the final walk through.

Seeing as I have only mentioned three names, and only one was ever on the same boat as I was, even a skimmer could figure out that, Bob was the one who signed my qual card on 5/5/72.

Thanks Bob, it certainly can be a small, small world after all…


PS (Moral of the story: Take a bubblehead to lunch, you never know how it will turn out…)

In Reply to: It's A Small World
Posted by Bob Pleau
November 05, 1998
Yeah, Andrew you are correct!

Indeed a small world. After meeting you once again - I was convinced that we knew each other in TJ, but that was so damn long ago I could not put it together. When you sent me your qual card - it did come together! Sometimes, as in this case, my brain needs a hammer hit to get with it! Since your e-mail, I remember our walkthrough very well.

Correct me if I am wrong, but our walkthrough took about 3 days, 4 hrs per day. Anyone whom I ever did a walkthrough with took at least that long. Sent many back after the first two hours, as they did not have it. Andrew had it! Only prob, as I remember, was control room functions. Had Andrew up in control for a 6 hour watch, with me as OOD, and MTC(SS) Don Smith as the Dive. We decided that this fledgling sub sailor would learn how the submarine really operates! Andrew got on it - understood it - and left with a grin on his face!

A few questions, and I was more than happy to sign his qual card. Andrew did a great job in qualifiing in Thomas Jefferson SSBN 618 Blue.

Sid's N T I N S Locker