Old Seadog Sea Stories

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~ Author Unknown

Earl Budweister

HI Everybody, not much to say. I served aboard the FIGHTING HANNA from 6-69 to 4-71 as a seaman boatswains mate in 3rd Div. I was involved in many onreps at sea. I ran the ships crain to retrieve wrecked hilo's and planes. I also got to frap the lines when we tied up at the many port of calls.

One thing that comes to mind is one day while I had a crew painting over the starboard side, one of my fellow goof balls didn't want to finish one little section, so overboard I went to finish it because as soon as we got done we could go on liberty. The boys started playing around and would raise me up then let me drop many feet . They did that 3 or 4 times. The last time the knot they tied came loose and I fell several feet to the water below where I had to swim completely around the ship to the wall and climb to the top, where just the day before, a shipmate caught a baby hammerhead shark off the fantail.  Hope you enjoy reading one of my fond memories of my life on the old girl. - Earl Budweiser

Earl Budweiser
CW MUSIC51@aol.com (Earl Long)

Jim Baker

I thought this was a cute joke and maybe you would want to share it with our other shipmates. Sent to the Yeoman by Jim Baker, who served with VAH-4 1962-1964

"One night at sea, the ship's captain saw what looked like the lights of another ship heading toward him. He had his signalman blink to the other ship: "Change your course 10 degrees south." The replay came back: "Change YOUR course 10 degrees north." The ship's captain answered: "I am captain. Change your course south." To which the reply was: "Well, I am a seaman first class. Change your course north." This infuriated the captain, so he signaled back: "Dammit, I say change your course south. I'm on a  Battleship!" To which the reply came back: "And I say change your course north. I am a lighthouse!"

Jim Baker
BPLADY@aol.com or jim.baker@dana.com

Jack Downs, Rick Roberts, John Yeoman tell of a not so funny then but funny now story...

Man overboard, this is not a Drill -
Rick Roberts: "Some sailor* sleeping on the catwalk rolled a little too far and fell into the South China Sea. He spent nine hours in the water without even a pair of skivvies, swimming toward the ship all the time, we finally found him before the sharks did, when the chopper came down with him a big crowd came up on deck cheering, he was a sun burned tired hero..."

*The Sailor mentioned here was none other than Roy Deardorf.

Jack Downs: I was on board the Hancock in '66 when that happened and still have a few old Hancock Signatures, if you remember those. I have the issue with a picture of John Wayne talking to the fellow who fell overboard. His name is Roy Deardorf. They are down in sickbay and the guy looks great. Fact is Wayne looks like a guy who just spent 9 hours in the water. Don't know much more about him."

There's a little known, but interesting bit of Hancock Lore about this story. Roy Deardorf survived his interesting experience with the fishes of the South China Sea, and later was invited to appear on the national syndicated weekly "I've Got a Secret" show. Now what do you suppose was his secret?

No, not that he fell overboard and was adrift for 9 hours... Nope, not having the conversation with "The Duke", but that he was adrift for 9 hours in his birthday suit! You know what those TV people like to report about for the sake of ratings! Well if Roy could live with it, then, I suppose that's all that matters...Celebrity is, after all what "it's all about" Read a bit about this turn of events in the "Hancock Signature" that turned out to be a 'Lucky' turn of events for Roy.

Jim Hultman talks about this time aboard Hannah and when Roy Deardorf took a dip in the South China Sea:

Jack Downs, Rick Roberts and John Yeoman and Jim Hultman - Hand Salute!