View Full Version : What were some of your extra duties?
Because of the many jobs each of us had in the military, I was just wondering what extra duties or jobs many of us got stuck with. for me ( U.S. Army ) it was CBR specialist=arms room duty=ammo dump guard duty an a lot of SOG duty on the tac sites. U.S.Navy I was explosive weps handler qualed, fork lift an crane opperator qualed, brig chasser an guard, supply room qualed. This was also on top of standing QD watches plus the regular watches on the wepons site. Got a lot of chit jobs, but learned a lot.
Firefighting, damage control, assault team. atomic weapons protection team and that about all I can remember. Should have been a firefighter when I got out because I was highly trained and good at it. Thanks to affirmative action it was next to impossible to get hired for me in that field.
Air Force Hazard Survey Team Member: Trained to put on a rubber suit and collect NBC samples. Function during an Alert was to suit up and sit sweating in a bus. The major hazard was considered to be a nuclear incident as B-52s flew with nuclear weapons daily. The only good point about this extra duty was the 1st Sergeant removed team members from all other duty rosters. This was just a little diversity for a computer guy.
The fun extra job I ever had was currier duty while in Korea. I was a ground radio equip. tech. I was picked to do currier to headquarters in Soul every day, drove the Major's jeep and strapped on his .45 to make the trip. Other then that it was just KP, always requested pots&pans, the mess sgt's would leave me alone after I got them cleaned up! (no KP in Korea, of course)
Well, after they found out I had a degree in commericial banking I spent my last two tours in RVN as a Vietnamese labor service officer.In short, I hired , fired, INSURED, and paid the Vietnamese people to do the hootch maid duties, the sh*t burners, sand bag fillers, etc. Well, it is sad for me to report to you, that while we were over there fighting for them, they would rob, steal, and take ANYTHING damn thing those Bast*rds could get their hands on.I wish I could say otherwise but, my feelings for the Vietnamese people is less the sterling. I wouldn't pour a cold bucket of PEE on them to put their hearts out if the were on fire. Sorry, Michealp,but my experience was FAR different from yours.They would, to your face,kowtow, cook, polish ,wash ,sweep and dust and iron, but turn your back, leave your hootch with out locking your locker and you would be short money,intellegence info[like your name and call sign] on a zippo or unit funds and it would be gone. OH NO ! Mama San didn't know sh*t Well screw with the bull and you get the horn!.I probably saved the lives of many of the slimey little bas*ards by firing them befor the No. Viets took over.Nick
My brother married one and brought her and her daughter back to the States. Nastiest woman I have ever meet. Best thing is she flew the coop when she got her citizenship. She deserted her children and hooked up with her old boy friend that had a wife and six children back in Vietnam. From just my limited experience I found money to be their God, They will lie when the truth would do them better, also they think the world owes them.
Hope this isn't the normal experience. If it was we should of dropped the big one them a long time ago.
Pulled CQ a few times as an MP. It was 24 hour duty. Also, when pulling CQ, if we were not on the road, I would be acting Desk Sergeant after midnight. That could be extremely boring or very entertaining. Our CO was very "committment" happy and I, along with several others were sent several times to guard downed helicopters in central Germany. I have also been put on street corners to guard them during presidential and papal visits. Never saw anybody! Been guards at officer's balls and meetings. At D 5/6 ADA, I painted everything that could possibly be painted...buildings, rooms, hallways and vehicles. I filled the sh*t out of some sandbags Down Range for use around the missile site. Once, during the winter months, we filled a bunch with snow instead of sand. They were fine until Spring time! Mike
Was in a Military Intelligence unit, so we had a SCIF (Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility) that needed "guarding" by us weenies with the right clearances. Boring as all get-out since there was no TV, radio, etc. Only old issues of Jane's to read. They just needed a warm body with a clearance present. Used to sleep in front of the vault door so no one could enter without waking me. Ah, anything for the war effort!
I was assigned two weeks of opening the messhall every morning for the cooks. After the second day, the head cook would get my key from me at my bunk. By the time I rollled into the messhall, I had a very fine breakfast every day for two weeks.
I somehow got sent TDY to Range Control at Ft. Campbell for a month. I worked the 11-7 shift as the switchboard operator. Units in the field hooked in to "drops" and called the switchboard and I dialed where ever it was- like the old time operators. My shift was mostly quiet. The most bothersome thing was if an artillery unit was out because they got constant weather updates. One night was VERY interesting when a Chinook lost a 105mm Howitzer somewhere along it's flight path. I answered the phone and had an officer identify himself and then say, "Get me the division commander." After connecting him, I put the switch in the position that allowed me to listen, but not be heard. I think I learned a few new words. They found it sometime the next day. Later I discovered that I was TDY to Range Control for 2 weeks according to them, but a month according to my unit.The result? 2 free weeks of leave.
Fort Devens, Mass. Fall, 1967. Had just finished advanced individual training. Normally took 2 weeks to get orders to your first duty station. Across the street from the company barracks was the "company park". The "park" had a lot of trees. Did I mention it was "fall". Began raking leaves at 0800. After several trips to the dump, we broke for chow at 1200. At 1300 we began raking leaves again.......securing at 1700. Repeat each day. For some reason we always started the day in the same spot as the previous day. Go figure. :eusa_wall:
One of my extra duties, unit armorer, led to the best job I ever had in the Army. I was assigned to teach indoctrination on American small arms to the German Budeswehr Reserve units. At least once a month I'd take M16s, M1911s and M60s to a German Army range and do familiarization with them. It was always a fun day and I got to meet many WW2 veterans. Best part was that since my arms room (A Finance section) didn't have M60s I got to draw them from the main post arms room. The post SGM that was in charge of this program was so POd at his armorer for not doing this that I wasn't responsible for cleaning the weapons after the training. Another little benefit was that I got to qualify on the German weapons and earned their Schützenschnur qualification badge. Great times!
When I was a medic with the 4th ID Mech, we transitioned from "cracker box" to Gamma Goat field ambulances. The 1st echelon maintenance got pretty involved on these, and included sealed brake drum removal and (big) wheel bearing re-packing. To "fix" a flat tire you had to convert the "articulating chassis" to a rigid chassis with the OVM truss kit, and run without one of the center (six) wheels. For those of us with mechanical experience this was no big deal, but for the guys who weren't mechanically inclined it was a nightmare and something they never thought they'd encounter as a medic. So I suppose I could say I worked occasionally as a wheeled vehicle mechanic.
Dan In Indiana
After ITR, almost a year of electronics school, then to Chu Lai. Spent one month on perimeter guard duty, one month working in the Americal Division PX warehouse [the Army thought as how the Marines got their PX supplies from them, they should supply a body] where Conex boxes full of hard liquor had to be inventoried [read sharp pencil and bulging utilities at quitting time]. Then a month of "police" duty, picking up trash, burning chitters, all kinds of petty stuff, painted the Colonels crapper bright orange [story in another thread], they tried to get me on another month of police duty, that lasted two days, got one of the guys in the shop to fake a problem with some crypto gear, and seeing as how I was the only crypto tech around, got that duty cancelled PDQ. Was warned once to get ready for mess duty, but reminded the powers that be, as an E4, I was entitled to a blood stripe on my Blues, therefore I was an NCO, and NCO's didn't do mess duty, and they would have to bust me to LCpl to comply with the "book". No way were they were going to do that, so I would have to go as a Cpl., and then I would expect the "burn" papers would ready for me to sign at the end of the thirty days. All of a sudden, the idea of me doing a 0400-2200 every day for thirty days was dropped. My 12&20 would have ended with 5 months left on my contract, when the 3 month extension became available, and I jumped on it so there would be no shine your boots and polish your brass when I got back. Early out and I was back home two months early. Gotta' luv the way the 'guvmint spends all kinds of money training a guy, and then has him doing something else. Did get 3 R&R's out of that 16 month SEA "vacation" though. Would tell you about those, but why trouble Pat with sending me to the "Romper Room".
To an extent this reminds me of the story that came out of Imperial Russia. Decades after it was practice for a soldier of the Imperial guard to be posted in the court yard of the palace someone asked why are we placing a guard out here, what is he supposed to do? As the story goes a guard was first placed there to keep people from sitting on a freshly painted bench, and no one had ever said to stop posting a guard there.
Other than the usual duty roster stuff: KP, guard duty, charge of quarters runner, fire watch, I can’t say I had “additional duties” until I was commissioned.
One annual training with the National Guard Armored Cavalry Squadron, I was the Executive Officer of B Troop. The XO automatically has collateral duties besides the maintenance section, mess team, supply section and communications section. The “additional duty” I recall most vividly that came with the territory was investigating injured soldiers and preparing line of duty reports. During this one two week training I prepared eleven of these reports, two of them on the same guy for falling off his tank on separate occasions. The most unusual was the loader that was apparently seated on top of the turret, although he stated he was in the turret, when the tank got to the end of the live fire lane the driver accidentally put the tank into reverse. The tank changed direction so suddenly the loader was thrown forward down the forward slope of the turret and landed on his back on the fender supports. He was evacuated by helicopter to a medical facility and as it turned out his worse injury was sunburn from being kept immobile where he landed waiting for the helicopter.
Later when I was in the Division G-4 I was assigned as survey officer to investigate and complete a report so that a sedan could be released for repair or salvage. The papers I received included copies of an accident report prepared by a local police department, and all the supporting statements from the driver and the maintenance section detailing the damage and cost of repair. I examined the vehicle and reviewed all the documents and found the driver at fault, and released the vehicle as no longer required for evidence.
On another occasion I was detailed to court martial duty to hear a case on a full time technician that was accused of cashing reservist’s checks. I noticed that other than the president of the board all the officers detailed were full time police, so whoever convened the court selected the court members from the reservists that were known to be in law enforcement. I wasn’t selected to sit on the court which was fine with me, so never heard the case or findings.
While I was in the Armor Officer Basic Course at Ft. Knox we were all detailed to Post “Duty Officer” which because of the number of officers there I only did once. This was more in the way of a duty detail rather than an additional duty. The charge of quarters was a Staff Sergeant that had apparently pulled this duty many times so knew the routine and guided me through the requirements. We had some facilities that we were required to “inspect” and he drove the vehicle and pointed out what needed to be checked. This was mostly checking that doors were locked and there was no sign of entry. He drove down a tree lined unpaved lane that was totally dark until a chain link fence and gate came into view. Just inside the gate a building could be made out in the headlights of the vehicle. This I was told was the ammunition supply point. The SSgt said that the protocol was for me to walk up to the gate and show my ID, and “inspect” the guard. As I approached the gate silhouetted by the vehicle headlights I heard a great deal of scuffling and the distinct sound of shotguns being pump loaded. Near as I could make out there was five or six guards and my first thought was “why are all these guards in the building?” It then occured to me that they were all sleeping and this charade of “alertness” was merely a show, intended to intimidate as most of the officers were newly commissioned with no previous experience in the military. It was everything I could do to keep from laughing at this group antic. I choose not to report it as I thought it was harmless, and it was mighty cold to be walking around the perimeter at that time of the night.
alibi, just another story about the Russian imperial guard. When Catherine the Great was running things, Guardsmen were selected by one criteria. The applicants were ordered to "drop their pants" for inspection to see if their "equipment" met her satisfaction.
El Paso Mark
Cleaning the seagull poop off the Admirals private landing on Ford Island, Hawaii. :mad:
As Officer of the Day at Yong Son Compound,KOREA,I pulled the Slot Machine Verification Officer duty one day. The "job" entailed riding in a 3/4T van, accompanied by a Korean technician and a Mafia-type E-8, and going to several remote Army posts to "rob" the slot machines. I had to verify all three counter readings on each machine. If the pay out counter showed that the machine was paying out more than 80%, the Korean tech "tweaked" the machine to bring it back in line. The tail end of the van would hit the road occasionally on the way back to Seoul because of the heavy load of quarters. I don't know what happened to all the bags of quarters after they dropped me off at my BOQ, but a year later, all of the slot machines were removed from all U.S.Army facilities.
VD Control Officer at a small camp in Korea in 82-83. Not really a lot too it, but I did know which of the ladies were, as of the time of the test, clean. And two awkward moments related this subject - one time, on my second tour in Korea (first was 79-80), I was at the commissary at Osan and a Korean spouse of an American came up to me and asked if I was Captain --------. I replied yes. She told me she was Miss An, and wondered if I remembered her. I did, some really good times. Then a guy came up and she introduced me to her husband and her daughter. Second one was after I returned to the US after my second tour. The guy who replaced me was coming to the same office I was assigned to. When he got there, he told me his new wife would be arriving soon and that she thought she remembered me. When she did arrive, he brought her over to my house. I remembered her, and a number of memorable evenings. Never said a word to him about it. But awkward nonetheless.
What goes around, comes around. Provided Air Defence for Osan while over there in 76-77 IHAWK C btry. 1 st Bn. 2 sd. ADA. An as one VD control officer once said, they were clean 10 mins. ago, but don't ask me about now.
Before going to RVN iin 1968, we were on post support rotation at Ft Bragg and
I got assigned to a firing party detail.
We would travel around NC and fire salutes and present flags at military funerals.
Sad to see some of what went on-little towns and youngsters in boxes.
Crying families and teenage widows.
We practiced and did a good job. 21 gun salute is not the proper term for a funeral volley.
Another time in prep for a large post inspection we policed up a few truckloads of pinecones and hauled them away.
A pre inspection inspection revealed that the area was too unnatural looking.
We had to retrieve a load of pinecones and redistribute them.
Reponse to comment on VN nationals.
90+% of GIs only experience with VN nationals was bargirls or civilians working on base.
These folks were mostly refugees and displaced persons. They were making the best of what they had.
Many will recall the parasitic and predatory nature of folks in towns in the US that surrounded military bases.
GIs are regarded as lawful prey and easy pickin's. Very similar situation.
There is a book and movie entitled "The Ugly American" illustrates a bit on how a lot of us react to unfamiliar situations.
We tend to look down upon and disregard folks we consider "different' or "inferior." We often have no clue what it is to live at the level most primitive or 3rd world cultures endure.
We deride and make fun of them. Judging a society by its lowest caste is somewhat shortsighted.
When you're in the bush for a week or so with one other round eye and a squad or platoon of indigenous guys, mutual respect is a big deal.
There were instances of Embattled CIDG forces given the offer of "Give us the Americans" and go home. At those times you wanted pretty good counterpart relations....
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