Wednesday, December 21, 2005

'Twas the Night Before Christmas (sailors' version)

'Twas the night before Christmas, compartments were still,
The sailors were sleeping, as most sailors will.
The ditty bags hung by the lockers with care,
In hopes that St.Nicholas soon would be there.
The men were all peacefully dreaming in bed
As visions of liberty danced in each head.
The Chief in his skivvies, hopped into his rack,
Having just come from town and a quick midnight snack.

When out on the deck there arose such a roar,
I ran to the porthole to find out the score.
I stuck out my head and started to shout,
"Just what in the world is this noise all about?"
A moon made for boondocking showed with a glow,
It was downright cold out, 'bout seven below.

What I saw out there looked like those Mardi Gras floats,
'Twas a Captain's gig drawn by four white Navy goats.
In the boat was a man who seemed quiet and moody,
I knew in an instant St. Nick had the duty.
As quickly as Monday his billy goats came,
He whistled and shouted and called them by name.
"Now Perry, now Farragut, Dewey and Jones,
What's the matter John Paul, got lead in your bones?
A little to Starb'rd, now hold it up short,
No fluffing off now, or you'll go on report!"

He was wearing dress "Reds" that fit like a charm,
His hash marks they covered the length of his arm.
The gifts to be issued were all in his pack,
The gedunk was ready to leave on each rack.
His eyes they were watering, his nose caked with ice,
He wiped it with canvas, then sneezed once or twice.
He opened his mouth and started to yawn,
It looked like the Sun coming up with the dawn.

The stump of a pipe, he held tight in his teeth,
And took a small nip from a bottle beneath.
He wasn't so big, but he must have been strong,
I figured he'd been in SEALs early and long.
He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old Tar,
Who said "Evenin' Matey, here have a cigar."
He filled every seabag with presents galore,
And left us all leave papers, right by the door.

With "Anchors Aweigh" he climbed back into place,
A broad smile was creeping all over his face.
One look at his watch and he started to frown,
"This mid watch is certainly getting me down."
Then out to the breakwater and into the night,
The gig started fading, the landscape was bright.
"Merry Christmas" he said, as he drove on his way,
Now I'll finish my rounds and sack in for the day."

by Fred P. The "OLD" Chief

Monday, December 05, 2005

First Sergeant of the Year 2005

Val Poss, President of the "Next Generation", is understandably proud of her son-in-law Sean Gouge, and we all share her pride in Sean's accomplishments. Congratulations Sean!

The following quote is taken from "Fighter Line" news of NAS Fort Worth, Carswell Field, Dec. 3, 2005:

301st Fighter Wing
First Sergeant of the Year 2005
Master Sgt. Sean P. Gouge

"Master Sgt. Gouge’s accomplishments: Master Sgt. Gouge deployed to Balad Air Base, Iraq for 156 days as the 332nd Expeditionary Maintenance Squadron 1st Shirt. He balanced his operations and administrative duties contributing to 4500 Operation Iraqi Freedom combat flight hours. Sergeant Gouge built group and squadron recognition programs from scratch and is a teacher as well as a leader to NCOs and his peers. He is an inspirational leader and persistent morale-builder. Sergeant Gouge was also voted in as Vice President of the 301st First Sergeants Council and constructed the first NCO Induction Ceremony for the 301st."

Milford L. (Gus) Forsman

We are sad to report that Gus Forsman succumbed on Dec. 1, 2005, to the pulmonary fibrosis which he has been battling for a long time. He will be missed by all of the extended Houston family but especially by his daughters, Diane and Dawn. He passed away in Kerrville, Texas. Services will be on Dec. 9 at the Fort Sam Houston National Cemetary in San Antonio. Our prayers go up for his family.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

A Visit with Otto

I managed a visit with Otto and Trudy this week. Things are very difficult for them both, but they are both amazingly up-beat. However, Otto has given up saying "I'm fine, thanks" as a standard reply. It is NOT "fine" anymore. He is in a world of hurt. Vic's INCOUNTRY blog details this visit of NOV 30 .. with more information.