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Walter Merle Blackburn
  • Male
  • Jonesboro, GA
  • United States
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Walter Merle Blackburn's Commands

 

Walter Merle Blackburn's Page

Profile Information

Rank
Senior Chief Petty Officer
Enlisted Rating
Yeoman
Where were you or your family stationed?
Board of Review Discharges & Dismissals, Wash., DC; SURASDEVDET, Key West; COMSTRIKEFORSOUTH, Naples, Italy; Instructor's School, Norfolk; YN "B" School Instructor, San Diego; MAAG Japan, Tokyo; COMFIRSTFLT, San Diego; Recruiting Station, Columbus, OH; USNAVINSERO, Yokosuka
Veteran of Foreign War
The Cold War, Korean War, Vietnam
Current Status with the US Navy
Retired
Start date of your service
September 16, 1947
End date of your service
August 2, 1967

20 years shore duty

I had been in the Navy a year and a half on my first tour working with civilians in an office in Washinton, D.C. I had made third class but was this the Navy? Someone told me that ADM Byrd was getting a South Pole expedition together a couple blocks away. I went over there and talked with them. They said I should put in a request to the Bureau of Naval Personnel to go with them. I went back and told my CO, a LCDR, what I wanted to do. He told me to forget a transfer. He said he would have to replace me and that was NOT going to happen. I went back to ADM Byrd's people and talked with a CAPT Kosko. He told me to send a request for duty with them via them and they would request approval. I did, they did and I had orders to ADM Byrd's Task Force 66 within a week. But the Secretary of Defense Johnson would not give us the rest of the money we needed to make the expedition. We broke up and I was sent to Key West, FL.
I did three years in Key West with Surface Anti-Submarine Development Detachment and it was time for orders. The guys all informed me that since I had not been on a ship for duty yet I would be going to one from there for sure. What they didn't know was that I had a request in to the Bureau for Embassy duty. I received orders to COMNAVSOUTH. No one knew where that was and at that time we didn't know how to find out. I figured it was somewhere in South America. When I reported in at the Pentagon I found out that it was a new NATO command in Naples, Italy.
When my two years were up in Italy I was razzed again about not having any sea duty and I did get orders to the USS Maury. What I had in the Bureau at that time was a request for duty at any NROTC unit. In two weeks they cancelled the ship orders and sent me to teach in a Yeoman school in San Diego.
After three years of teaching I received a call one day from the detailer on North Island. He told me he had to send me somewhere so I asked him what my choices were. He gave me several that I could choose from and we settled on COMNAVMARIANAS on Guam. That was on Wednesday. On Friday the Bureau cancelled the Guam orders and sent me to Tokyo as Admiral's Writer to a RADM Upper Half in the Military Assistance Advisory Group. I put the hat on in transit but the Ambasador didn't want us to show such a strong military presence. They brought up a Hong Kong tailor and put us in civilian clothes!
Two years and where would I go? The detailer on North Island was still there so he was my ticket to getting the First Fleet Flag Office job also on North Island at that time. I was attached to First Fleet for exactly one year. Long enough for me to qualify for shore duty. I requested recruiting duty and while First Fleet went aboard ship I was detached and sent to Columbus, OH for recruiting duty.
Recruiting was ramping up at this time and in addition to being the Administrator I also took on the duties of Administrative Officer. I was relieved of those duties during the last few weeks of my four year tour by a full Lieutenant. I completed the Navy Intelligence course and got assigned the NEC of Naval Intelligence Clerk. I also had a request in to the Bureau for an intelligence billet. I received orders to the U.S. Naval Counterintelligence Support Activity in Yokosuka.
I requested transportation by ship to Japan so I could get some sea duty. It was a growing command also and I filled the billet of Administrative and Supply Officer in addition to my own duties. Shortly after reporting in the command name was changed to the U.S. Naval Investigative Service Office. I was relieved of the officer duties by a LTJG several weeks before I transferred and became a Special Agent part time as they were trying to recruit me for that job when I retired. The hand writing was on the wall that further advancement was not going to happen. I had managed to get over a years college credits and I was ready to get out, finish my college and start teaching. That is exactly what I did.

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