A Little Fresh Air…..

“There was nothing better than the smell of a fresh BBQ in the open air, especially after having spent thirty days on a diesel boat – submerged on patrol between 55 and 90 feet!!”

Imagine,…. 85+ guys, most ALL UNDER the age of 30,…. smashed in an underwater suppository with no useable water, no ‘useable’ fresh air, no ‘useable’ showers, no natural light, only a half dozen toilets, no laundry facilities, no barber shop, NOTHING!!!

We lived in and under conditions much WORSE than any Local, State, or Federal Penitentiary provided to the scumbags who broke our laws yet, we never complained, and openly accepted the fact that we were just Submariners Serving our Country’!

All I know is that the smell of ‘real’ fresh air means more to me today than anything else.  I’ve breathed ‘foul’ air……  I remember air so thin of oxygen that you couldn’t light a wooden match,…  I remember the smell of diesel that permeated every thread of my Hong Kong tailored dress blues,……  And I also remember comments I’d get when passing by fellow service members and civilians while on liberty – no matter what port we were in…….

“Pig Boat Sailor”

DBF!!!

Lanny

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Author: Lanny

Known as the 'King of Run-on Sentences", Bill "Lanny" Lanahan served aboard the Sailfish as an Engineman from November 1971 until June, 1975. After 7 years in the Navy, Lanny spent 15 years as a Caterpillar Marine Analyst before accepting a position with the Department of the Interior working for the US Fish & Wildlife Service. Lanny retired in 2012 and currently resides at his "Mini-Wildlife Refuge" located in Middle Georgia with his wife Connie and his dog Griffin.

4 thoughts on “A Little Fresh Air…..

  1. Robert DuBois says:

    I can remember on the train going from New London to home for the weekend in dress blues and no body was close to me. The smell of diesel really stayed in those blues.

    Reply
  2. Reggie Roe says:

    I recall talking with Squirrel, he was an IC1/SS. He said he had a girlfriend that would take his uniforms and put them under the bed, because she liked the smell of diesel.

    Reply
  3. Thomas Place, Sr. says:

    I remember, as a ‘new kid’, listening to the old guys talking about staying down so long that when they finally got to surface, quite a few of the guys actually got physically, gaging, throwing-up sick when they got their first wiff of ‘fresh’ air! Now I’ve got to admit, that as a new kid, I didn’t really believe them. I mean, you remember how it was, right? As a new kid you were always taking stuff from somebody! They HAD to be pulling my leg. Well, I don’t guess that I need to explain this to any of you. I’ll just say that after our first ‘run’ (62 days on station) on our first WesPac of 1969-70 (after transferring from Squadron 8, New London), I discovered for myself just how foul smelling ‘fresh air’ can be!

    Reply

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