Jake, The Captain's Orderly and the Captain
When being a Captain's Office Runner isn't such a Good Thing
X (Admin) Division, 1962-1964

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As a Captain's Office Yeoman Striker, I often pulled duty as a Captain's Office Runner where we had to pass folders of paperwork needing signing by the Skipper whether he was in his In-Port Cabin or in his sea cabin up on the Island structure, which was just behind the wheel house.

Outside his hatch, stood a proud Marine Orderly, at parade rest. His name was Cpl Kelly.

Once when I came up to the Sea Cabin hatch, he snapped to attention, and said to me, "Jake, I don't think it's wise to bring him paperwork right now; he's in a very foul mood!"

I said, "Kelly, I have TAD orders for several Officers who must catch the afternoon COD (Carrier Onboard Delivery)."
He said, "Well, all right, Jake, but don't say I didn't warn you!"

Taking the folder, he knocked on the hatch, and a few seconds later, we heard the Skipper in a very grouchy voice call out, "Enter!"
Kelly opened the hatch and entered, and another few seconds later, flew out loud expletives along with the folder with all my paperwork. The wind caught it, and away all our paperwork flew in the 25 knot wind which was coming over the deck. Out came Kelly behind it, shutting the hatch behind him, giving me one evil stare, resumed his stance at parade rest, refusing to look at me. I knew it was time for me to just shut up and leave.

Like a puppy dog with his tail between his legs, I retreated back to the Office without the folder in hand, and knew I'd have to face our Yeoman Master Chief to report that all our morning's work was gone.

It took us the rest of that morning, and through our 2 hour Chow period, to get all that paperwork redone; this time the Chief used the Captain's Facsimile stamp!

Wisdom comes from experience. I thought and did differently after that, when the Captain's Orderly told me the Skipper was in a foul mood.

Jake Jaccard, YN3, USNR '61-'67
Captain's Yeoman, '62-'64

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Submitted 6/23/2012
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