Online Air Defense Radar Museum Guestbook

Radomes Guestbook V3.0

Welcome to the Online Air Defense Radar Museum. We hope you enjoy your visit, and that we have contributed a little something in the name of those who served.  Gene.

Please consider joining our new radar museum organization, The Air Force Radar Museum Association, Inc. AFRMA is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt non-profit Ohio Corporation. Our sole purpose is the creation and support of the National Air Defense Radar Museum at Bellefontaine, Ohio. Please visit our home page to join or donate to this cause. AFRMA, Inc. - The Air Force Radar Museum Association, Inc.. Follow the "Memberships" link on the AFRMA home page.

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05/31/2007 00:00:00

Name: Ronald G Guenther
Email: guenron AT

Joined the Air Force in September 1968 and retired January 1989. Had the priviledge to serve in the 21st NORAD Region, May 1970 through November 1971 at Hancock Field in Syracuse working heigth finders and air surveillance. Also had the great pleasure to serve with the men and women at Dover-Foxcroft and North Truro working the SAGE - BUIC mission.

05/29/2007 00:00:00

Name: Walt Martley
Email: bettyandwalt AT

My standing to speak on the issue is based on 10 years out in the heat, cold, oil, grease,and long hours as an aircraft mechanic, then 12 more years in the comparative comfort of a variety of electronic jobs, some of which I am still not sure I can talk about. In all that time, I never gained a combat ribbon, although I went where I was sent. This was all volunteer time, not forced by facing the draft or being drafted.

As far as a requirement for all to have military service as an introduction to the adult world, I recommend a recent op-ed article in the Washington Post by former Secretary of Defense Melvin Laird. He puts forth a strong case for required service, but not necessarily in the armed forces. The article suggests that compulsory "service", in a variety of forms, would be good for the individual and for the country. It also suggests that military service is not necessarily good for everyone, but that dedicated service in a good cause that benefits all of us, is.

Please, no compulsory military service. After all, there are many ways to grow up.

Best to all.

Walt Martley

05/29/2007 00:00:00

Name: Thomas F Ewing, S/Sgt
Email: tewing1 AT

1951 -1959 USAF 1959-1988 Federal Aviation Administration GS-13 Retired. AC&W's in Galena, Alaska 1952-53;Brunswick, ME 1953-55: Izmir, Turkey 1955-57 and FortFisher, NC 1957-59.

05/29/2007 00:00:00

Name: Tom Norris
Email: tnorris AT

Really looking forward to the re-union. I will be there with bells on. Also, I will try to contact Gordon Disney. I was stationed at Ft. Fisher in 68 thru 70.

05/28/2007 00:00:00

Name: John Tianen
Email: jtianen AT

Regarding Gary Jacobs' note, I am troubled that fewer and fewer members of Congress and Presidential candidates are veterans. I don't know if the roots can be traced back to the Vietnam Era, but there seems to be an underlying anti-military current in this country and I believe a lot of it has to do with the shrinking numbers in the population who have had military experience. I was appalled when a President was elected who dodged the draft. I am equally appalled at a major presidential candidate who is calling for an anti-war protest on this sacred holiday of Memorial Day. A few decades ago such people would have been considered cowards or traitors. Today, nobody seems to be that upset. In my community, parents get upset if they hear that military recruiters are in the high schools. Many colleges discourage ROTC programs and ban military recruiters from job fairs. I fear that there are forces in this country, if they gain political power, will work to emasculate our military. The current apathy toward the military and military service could make that a reality.

On a more positive note, I have provided a link to an interesting article that shows that a military career can still be fulfilling. Interestingly, the article notes that careers in the radar field are still considered critical occupations.

On this Memorial Day, let's not forget those who made the ultimate sacrifice in service to their country.

05/28/2007 00:00:00

Name: Jeff States
Email: psu68 AT

To add my voice to Gary & John, I suspect that one of the reasons for fewer and fewer members of Congress having military experience are that we are dealing with an all volunteer force. In addition, most of the country doesn't "feel" as if we are really at war. The general population isn't being asked to exhibit any sacrifice whatsoever. It surely must have been easier to enlist the day after Pearl Harbor than enlisting for the new type of war we seem to be facing in the 21st century. May I also remind everyone that with all of the "trouble" we experienced during the Viet Nam War, 2/3 of the 3.4 million who served there over the years were volunteers. Personally, I continue to feel that mandatory military service for all would provide us with a far better country.

05/27/2007 00:00:00

Name: Jeff States
Email: psu68 AT

Gary---Draft ended in 1973. I enlisted in 1960 and was in until 1968. Today, when I am discussing my military service with someone, they eventually will say----wow, you were in during Viet Nam!I have always felt obligated to add---yes, during Viet Nam, but not in Viet Nam.I found through trial and error that without adding this "disclaimer," the other person would always assume that I was a Viet Nam war vet.

05/27/2007 00:00:00

Name: Sam Armstrong
Email: samuel.armstrong2 AT

Was stationed at the 810th AC&W Squardon, Winston-Salem Air Force Stationed Winston-Salem,N.C. from 1961 to 1965 as the postal clerk and want to send out to all please stop tommorow and remember all who paid the greatest price, there life for all of us on Memorial Day

05/27/2007 00:00:00

Name: Gary Jacobs
Email: gaj7702 AT

I, too, was a "Vietnam-era" veteran during my enlisted time, 71-75. Later I returned as an officer, another story for another time. What I've found over the years is the military or veteran experience cuts both ways. Particularly for the Vietnam-era people, both those who served and those who didn't, the turmoil and conflict of those times frequently still resonates. I have found people who like the former military person, and those who don't. Usually the latter have not served (though some have, and hated it), so they expect Bilko, Major Burns, McHale, or Colonel Klink, a kind of comic opera military person. I think good management is where you find it, be it in the military or corporate America. Now I'm not saying the military is the same as business, I do say that many of the ways to run an organization effectively work universally.

I wonder about this because as time goes on, the veteran community will get smaller and smaller. Most members of Congress now have not served.

Maybe that's why things like Radomes are important, "Preserving the Memory" indeed, not just of the equipment and sites, but the way of life that was part of radar. I like the stories people have posted on here for that reason.

05/26/2007 00:00:00

Name: Jeff States
Email: psu68 AT

Here is a great explanation of Memorial Day to be shared with "friends" who are not quite sure what they are celebrating-----
Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, is a day of remembrance for those who have died in our nation's service.
Memorial Day was officially proclaimed on 5 May 1868 by General John Logan, national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic and was first observed on 30 May 1868, when flowers were placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery.
Traditional observance of Memorial Day has diminished over the years. Many Americans have forgotten the meaning and traditions of Memorial Day. At many cemeteries, the graves of the fallen are increasingly ignored and neglected. Most people no longer remember the proper flag etiquette for the day. While there are towns and cities that still hold Memorial Day parades, many have not held a parade in decades. Some people think the day is for honoring any and all dead, and not just those fallen in service to our country.
There are a few notable exceptions. Since the late 50's on the Thursday before Memorial Day, the 1,200 soldiers of the 3d U.S. Infantry place small American flags at each of the more than 260,000 gravestones at Arlington National Cemetery. They then patrol 24 hours a day during the weekend to ensure that each flag remains standing.

05/26/2007 00:00:00

Name: Gary Jacobs
Email: gaj7702 AT

Anyone else ever run into the below, the "phony veteran." I have now and then. Usually I start out believing that I'm meeting the real deal. Then, the tall tales start. I have heard the following. "I was on a classified mission to rescue American POWs during the Vietnam war in North Vietnam. Everyone in my unit was killed, except me. I was captured. I escaped. I stole a MiG and flew back into South Vietnam and landed." Now it is possible, I suppose, but very unlikely. The claim is usually that all the derring-do is still classified.

I enlisted in 1971. Unknown to me and many others, the Vietnam war was winding down. I think the draft ended the following year? Maybe 1973. I've met guys a decade younger than myself wearing tattered jungle fatigues and claiming service in Vietnam. I don't get it.

Another one, we had a bartender who claimed to be a retired Marine Brigadier General and had a vanity license plate that read something like MARINE-1. Turned out he had been an E-2 or something for a couple of years. He had the uniform, the stars, the medals, everything. Remarkable.


From ABC News, 5/26/07; (edited): FBI agents and veterans will be on the lookout this Memorial Day weekend for phony military heroes, a disquieting trend that officials say has grown substantially in the years of the war with Iraq. "I probably get three to five calls a day about someone spotted with suspicious decorations," said Doug Sterner, who passes along the tips to veterans groups and the FBI. Sterner operates the Web site Home of Heroes, which is dedicated to honoring true military heroes. "I'll be damned if I sit idly by while some wannabe phony wears awards that real heroes gave their lives for," Sterner said. Among the most recent examples is Louis Lowell McGuinn of New York City. He claimed to be a lieutenant colonel in the United States Army, often appearing at military events wearing an impressive array of decorations, including a Purple Heart, Silver Star and the Distinguished Service Cross. But law enforcement officials say it was a ruse and that McGuinn was discharged from the Army in 1968 as a private, with none of the decorations he claimed. Last month, FBI agents arrested McGuinn and charged him with wearing unearned medals and badges in violation of federal law. They say he posed as a highly decorated military officer in order to get a job with an underwater marine security company. McGuinn pleaded not guilty and was released on $5,000 bail with his travel restricted. When contacted by ABC News, he declined to comment on the case. The FBI and veterans groups say there are more and more decorated phonies turning up every day, and when they are caught, the punishment varies.

05/26/2007 00:00:00

Name: Edward T. "Buddy" Harrelson, Jr.
Email: harrelsonb AT

914 AC&W Armstrong, Ont.

513 Seaboard Ave.
Mullins, SC 29574-1917

05/25/2007 00:00:00

Name: Gary Jacobs
Email: gaj7702 AT

Air defense history anniversary: Moscow Times, 5/25/07 (edited): On a mild evening in late spring 1987, a single-engine Cessna airplane circled over the Kremlin before landing on Moskvoretsky Bridge and taxiing uphill past St. Basil's Cathedral and parking just on the edge of Red Square. The pilot was 19-year-old Mathias Rust from West Germany, who stunned the world by taking off from Helsinki, flying 800 kilometers in some of the world's most heavily guarded airspace and landing in the heart of the Soviet empire. It will be exactly 20 years ago Monday that Rust emerged from the cockpit and greeted bewildered bystanders after risking his life for what he called a humanitarian mission: He told Soviet prosecutors after his arrest that he had wanted to meet with Kremlin leaders and talk about peace and disarmament. After being detained by startled Soviet security officers following his landing, Rust was taken to the KGB-run Lefortovo jail, where he waited all summer until his trial began in September. He was convicted of illegally crossing into Russia and of malicious hooliganism and sentenced to four years in a prison labor camp. But he was allowed to stay in Lefortovo -- reportedly because Soviet authorities were concerned about his safety -- and pardoned in August 1988, after which he returned to West Germany. Rust had rented the Cessna from his flying club in northern Germany … He then went on to Helsinki, where he embarked on his trip to Moscow. Rust said he planned the trip alone for months -- with serious doubts that he could pull it off. Some military officials still maintain that Rust's flight was not the isolated act of a peculiar young man, but rather a calculated affront from an erstwhile enemy. "I thought then, and still believe, that this was a planned provocation," said Anatoly Kornukov, who was a senior air defense commander at the time. "Everybody knew then that civilian sport airplanes would not be shot down." Kornukov is one to know: He commanded an air defense unit based in Sakhalin in 1983 whose fighter jets took off before shooting down a Korean jumbo jet, killing 269 passengers and crew. Kornukov went on to become commander of the Air Force in post-communist Russia.Aviation and military experts have repeatedly claimed that in the wake of the tragedy, the Soviet Union shied away from engaging small civilian aircraft such as Rust's. Strict orders were given that no hostile action was to be taken against civilian aircraft unless they came from the highest levels, said Tom LeCompte, a U.S. aviation journalist who is working on a book about Rust. Claims that Rust's flight made a mockery of Soviet air defenses are wildly overblown, LeCompte said. "He was carefully tracked by Soviet forces and was even encountered by a MiG fighter jet," LeCompte said in a telephone interview. Gorbachev, who missed Rust's landing because he was at a Warsaw Pact meeting in East Berlin, sacked several high-ranking officers, including Defense Minister Sergei Sokolov. Historians have argued that Gorbachev grabbed the opportunity to rid the military top-brass of people hostile to his reforms. Rust said only a series of coincidences made his landing possible.He initially wanted to land directly on Red Square, but he chose the Moskvoretsky Bridge because Red Square was too crowded. As it turned out, the electricity cables that typically spanned over the bridge had been removed for maintenance.
"They were replaced the next morning, so when senior KGB officials visited the place, they could not understand how I could possibly have landed there," Rust said.

05/25/2007 00:00:00

Name: Tom Page
Email: historian AT

An AP news story (May 25, 2007, 3:15 PM ET) re the West Coast Over-the-Horizon Backscatter (OTH-B) radar system site at Christmas Valley, Oregon, may be found at . Basically, the news item is about potential development of the land, and states in part that ''Governor Kulongoski has told state agencies to help find uses for the site of a $313 million radar project built to track squadrons of Russian bombers. ...'' For the rest of this story, go to the link.

05/25/2007 00:00:00

Email: sharonanddale AT

Bill Schroder: I was at the 777th,but dont remember this Power Plant ordeal, It probably happened before I arrived in sept. I recall some stories being told.It was gutsy to go back and turn off the fuel. I have a Yearbook that was done just a couple of months before I got there, would be glad to share it with all of you. It shows my Sargent, SSGT Bill Leverett, and Civilian Worker, Bill Jennings. Also worked with Civilian Supervisor Dave George ,My second SSGT,Carlos Velasquez. I made a mistake In my first entry ,We only had two White Superiors. Tks for letting me chat with all of you guys, looking forward to becoming a member. SSGT Dale Copeland.

05/24/2007 00:00:00

Name: Dale Dickinson
Email: dale AT

I was stationed at Luke AFB TAC Sq, 1970-71; Tatalina AFS Alaska 1971-72; Luke AFB NORAD blockhouse 1972-73.

05/22/2007 00:00:00

Name: jerry dies
Email: jdies AT

I was stationed at Luke AFB (sage) from 1960 thru 1962. Lompoc AFS, CA. 1962 thru 1964. Crystal Springs Miss. l965 thru l966. Tataline AFS, Ak l966 thru 1967. Luke AFB TAC Control Sqdn l967 thru 1969. Would like to hear from anyone who was stationed with myself at these times and places.

05/22/2007 00:00:00

Name: Bill Schroeder
Email: bisonwm AT

Jerry - I was at the 777th from 6/65 to 11/66, worked in the FPS-26 tower. Were you there when the governor linkage disconnected on one of the generators? I was in the FPS-26 tower, the lights got real bright and then went out, it sounded like guns going off when the breakers in the AC power distribution cabinet tripped. We thought WW III had started.

When power was restored we found every 28 volt lamp in the FPS-26 that was normally lit had burned out, made it real interesting until we could get them replaced.

The guy that was on duty in the power house said he had two options, 1) run down the hill and try and outrun the flywheel if it came off or 2) run past the generator and cut off the fuel. He chose # 2.

05/21/2007 00:00:00

Name: John Tianen
Email: jtianen AT

Last week I posted a message about the death of Major Douglas Zembiec (USMC), killed in action in Iraq. Known in the Marine Corps as "The Lion of Fallujah", this man was and is a true American hero. Google his name and you will see what an extraordinary patriot and human being he was. I consider it an honor to have known him.

05/18/2007 00:00:00

Name: John Tianen
Email: jtianen AT

I was flying east earlier this week and noticed what appeared to be an old Air Force radar site as we approached Albuquerque from the west. Out of curiosity, I searched the web site and found the site to be the former West Mesa AFS.

05/18/2007 00:00:00

Email: sharonanddale AT

I was at the 777th radar station, klamath CA from sept 1965 to nov 1968. I wasnt a Radarman , but was in Power production. {power pro lets go] WE ran a diesel power plant with 3 Enterprise engines and 3 White superior engines. We worked along with civilian workers. We were a prime power plant ,which meant we ran 24hrs and powered the entire site . I have a lot of great memories of the triple-7 , and I wonder if its still active? Ive seen it on Google-maps , but it looks different.Anybody have any info on the 777th Radar Site. Dale E Copeland

05/15/2007 00:00:00

Name: Jim Jerzycke
Email: kq6ea AT

Wonderful website! Truly a labor of love.
Regards, Jim

05/14/2007 00:00:00

Name: Jeff States
Email: psu68 AT

To John Tianen: If the death of Major Zembiec while serving his country doesn't belong here, than where would it belong? All of us "survived" our service. I suspect that all members of Radomes join your in honoring your family friend.

05/14/2007 00:00:00

Name: Bisson, George A.
Email: geobis66 AT

I was in the A.F,from July 54 to Jan 64 and made many pcs moves Hamilton Field in Calif,777th A.C.& W Klamath Calif,613th A.P.O.919 det 33 Shaw A.F.B.S.Carolina,25th Air Division McChord A.F.B.Tacoma,Wash,Hickim A.F.B.Hawaii 1957 AACS,694th A.C.& W Lewistown,Mont,902nd,Miles City,Mont,& 1933rd AACS Harmon A.F.B New Foundland,quite a trip,ended up with Nat Guard,in N.H.retired as an E-6.with 24 yrs service,all my time in the A.F. was in the wire maint field,nat grd was in transportation,thanks for this site

05/13/2007 00:00:00

Name: Gary Jacobs
Email: GAJ7702 AT

Re: Enlistments and pay, from the current "Atlantic" magazine:

... To ease the deployment burden and give the military more options for dealing with hot spots outside Iraq and Afghanistan, Defense Secretary Robert Gates wants to boost America’s boots-on-the-ground combat power for the Army and Marine Corps by nearly 60,000 over the next five years, adding 7,000 soldiers and 5,000 marines each year. The Marines have a somewhat easier time recruiting; this is partly because they have religiously maintained their elite status, drawing many who want to see if they are good enough for the Corps, and partly because the Marines, as the smallest service branch outside the Coast Guard, need the fewest bodies. But the Army doesn’t have the luxury of selectivity in filling its expanded rolls. It needs 80,000 new soldiers this year and must find them in a populace that is in many ways less willing and less able to serve than earlier generations were. Young people are fatter and weaker. They eat more junk food, watch more television, play more video games, and exercise less. They are more individualistic and less inclined to join the military. And with the unemployment rate hovering near historic lows, they have other choices.

Yet now, more than at any time since Vietnam, the Army needs strong, quick-thinking, highly disciplined soldiers. Combat units are being sent onto battlefields that are more gray than black-and-white; soldiers on patrol in places like Afghanistan and Iraq must understand something that the Army itself has had a hard time learning: put bluntly, when to shake a hand and when to shoot someone dead. Today’s soldiers must synthesize more information than any American fighters before them, combining their knowledge of tactics with an awareness of the cultural landscape and an appreciation for the strategic implications of their actions.

Turning civilians into soldiers and teaching them to kill has always been difficult work, but these new challenges and demands have made it harder still, so the Army has made sweeping changes in the basic combat training that every recruit must go through. Drawing on the experience of battle-hardened veterans, the Army is incorporating the lessons learned in Iraq and Afghanistan. But at the same time, its overwhelming need for more soldiers puts limits on how tough its training can be. What if the physical and cultural demands of becoming a soldier intimidate potential recruits from signing up, or cause too many to wash out once they join? After all, many of today’s military jobs require more brainpower and technical skill than warrior ethos. (The tooth-to-tail ratio of combat soldiers to support troops has dropped steadily since the Civil War and is now less than 1-to-7.) Is it worthwhile to make a soldier march 20 miles, even though his or her actual job may never call for such a march? The Army’s answer to these questions, for now, is to offer its recruits a less hostile environment that won’t scare off as many people or make them quit: less shouting, less running, more encouragement, more understanding ...

05/13/2007 00:00:00

Name: Gary Jacobs
Email: gaj7702 AT

Now on e-Bay, unrelated to me in any way: 1954 Air Force 35mm Kodak film reel of radar, in original case. Documentation is included. E-Bay Item no.: 270119706975.

Mystery: What is it? Movie? Recording of some type? Technical item?

05/13/2007 00:00:00

Name: John Tianen
Email: jtianen AT,0,5768591.story?coll=la-home-center

Some members may think the above link is inappropriate for the guestbook but I'm putting it there anyway. It concerns the death of Major Douglas Zembiec (USMC)killed in action in Iraq. I have known the Major's father since I was 11 years old. I remember the Major as a toddler and most recently at his wedding reception 2 years ago. The man is and was a true American hero. He willingly placed himself in harm's way, knowing full well that he might someday pay the ultimate sacrifice. He is being laid to rest this coming Wednesday in Arlington National Cemetary. I will be there to honor him.

05/12/2007 00:00:00

Name: Jeff States
Email: psu68 AT

As an add-on to Gene's comment, I entered the Air Force in Jan, 1960. Therefore, my W-2 is for a full year's pay. The amount listed is...$980.00

05/11/2007 00:00:00

Name: Gene McManus
Email: gmcmanus AT

The new AFA magazine, "Air Force" is this year's Air Force Almanac. It includes a pay scale for enlisted & officers. A slick-sleeve with less than 4 months now gets $1204/month. Sure a far cry from my $85 initial base pay & "Flying 31" at Lackland in the summer of '56! Also, it's interesting to note that hazardous duty pay for officers & enlisted is essentially the same, with HDP for officers above O-6 going down from $250 to $150.

05/09/2007 00:00:00

Name: Aaron V. Allen
Email: aaron.nancy AT

Would the Vet who served at the sites 688 Amarillo, 701 Ft Fisher,
848 Wallace AS PI [left note below] pls msg me to check site ros-
ters? Thanks! Aaron...

05/07/2007 00:00:00

Name: Chuck Williams
Email: cwill1934 AT

I am delighted to see someone concerned with the memory of the old radar stations. I was a scope dope from Dec 1956 to Dec 1960. Stationed at; 770th AC&W,Palermo,N.J. 1957 to 1958. I was on the crew to serve at 639th AC&W ,Lowther AFS, Onterio,Canada. We opened the Station when it came on line (PINETREE LINE)1958 to 1959. I ratated to the States and served the remainder of my hitch at the 686th AC&W , Walker AFB, Roswell,N.M. Yes that Roswell. Like to here from anyone that served at these stations when I did.

05/06/2007 00:00:00

Name: Mike Sample
Email: michaelhsample AT

I was a member of:

AC&W Squadron Location When there

688th Amarillo TX 1968
701st Fort Fisher NC 1968-69
848th Wallace AS PI 1969-70

Please send any info. you may have on any other people there at that time or re-unions-Thank you

05/02/2007 00:00:00

Name: Jerry Smith
Email: studmfn63 AT

My father, Gerald B. Smith, was stationed at Mt. Hebo when I was born in 1963. I'd like to stay in touch with dad's friends & co-workers from Hebo. Unfortunately, Dad & Mom (Ruth) are both deceased. Hebo will always be a special place to me. Anybody who comes through Tacoma, Washington, let me know. I'd love to get together & talk. I myself am an Air Force veteran, having spent 10 years in the band program. Would love to hear from people who knew my folks.

05/01/2007 00:00:00

Name: Alfred D. Bradley
Email: alfred.bradley AT

I was at the 647th AC&W Squadron from 1955-1956 as "mailroom clerk" and in the orderly room and also in GCI clerk. I then was transfer to a Ground observer squadron.