EVERYTHING ABOUT GROG --
In the Spring of 1959, just before graduation
from Mira Costa High School in Manhattan Beach, California, I read an article
in the newspaper about the USS Nautilus (SSN-571), the first nuclear submarine
to go under the North Pole. I decided right then that that was what I wanted
to do, so in September of 1959, after I had helped my family move
to Crawfordsville, Oregon, I enlisted in the Navy under the Nuclear Power
Three weeks into "boot camp" at the Naval
Training Center in San Diego, California, my eyes were tested and it was
determined that I had a vision of 20/20 in my right eye and 20/25 in the
left, uncorrectable with lenses, so I was disqualified from submarine duty.
My enlistment was changed from Nuclear Power to High School Graduate, which
still guaranteed me a Class "A" School.
After "boot camp," I went to Interior
Communications Electricians School, where
I graduated Honor Man of the class. That distinction earned me a choice
of duty assignments, so I chose submarine duty again and received orders
for Submarine School in New
Shortly after my arrival at the Submarine
Base, once again I was disqualified from sub duty because of the vision
in my left eye. I spent the summer as a messcook in the "spud locker" at
the Base Galley. After completing 101 days of messcooking, I was assigned
to the USS
Glacier (AGB-4), an icebreaker out of
Boston. A month later, we headed south for "Operation Deep Freeze" in Antarctica.
While down in the ice, we received a radio message that IC Electricians
were needed in submarines, so . . . once again I volunteered for submarine
When we returned to Boston in the Spring
of 1961, I had orders for Submarine School one more time! Back to New London!
Fortunately for me, the Corpsman doing the eye test wasn't checking that
close, and I passed the physical. On August 23, 1961, I completed Basic
Submarine School in Section 102, Class
232, and after Advanced Submarine School - Electrical, I was then assigned
to the USS
Menhaden (SS-377) out of San Diego, California.
When I arrived in San Diego, the Menhaden
was up in Vancouver, B.C., so I temporarily spent seven weeks aboard the
Sea Fox (SS-402) until the Menhaden returned
in early December. I served aboard the Menhaden until August of 1963, attaining
the rate of IC2(SS), then got out of the Navy.
I worked in a plywood mill in Sweet Home,
Oregon, for a year, then went to Central
Oregon College in Bend for nine months,
where I received a Certificate as a Forestry Aide. My first job with the
U.S. Forest Service was with the Bear Valley Ranger District, Malheur National
Forest, in John Day, Oregon, as a Log Scaler and Timber Cruiser.
In March of 1966, after a six-week temporary
duty assignment, I transferred permanently as a Forestry Research Technician
to the Timber Quality Research Project, Pacific Northwest Forest and Range
Experiment Station, in Portland, Oregon.
In July, 1972, in order to get a promotion,
I transferred again to the U.S.F.S.'s Forestry Science's Lab in Flagstaff,
Arizona, as the Timber Technician on the Beaver
Creek Watershed Multi-Resource Evaluation Project.
It was part of the Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station,
headquartered in Fort Collins, Colorado.
In October, 1983, the Beaver Creek Project
was shutdown after 27 years of research, and I was assigned to the Prescribed
Burning Research Project, also in Flagstaff. In March of 1987, to supposedly
consolidate forest fire research in the West, my position in Flagstaff
was abolished, and I was given a "directed reassignment" to the Fire Research
Lab in Riverside, California, of all "gawdawful" places!
I did not want to go and live there for
the next ten years! So, with over 26 years of Federal service, counting
my time in the Navy, I chose to retire early. For the first three years
of retirement, I worked as a River Guide for a commercial river running
company here in Flagstaff, Worldwide Explorations, until they went bankrupt!
Now, I go on private river trips with
friends when I can. And, occasionally, I drive vehicle shuttles for other
people who are going on river trips. You know, I'm just plain "messing
around" . . . not doing much of anything! With the possible exception,
of course, of constantly adding stuff to this Web Site. It has turned into
nearly a full time job now . . . with no pay! :-)
By the way, perhaps you are wondering
how I came by the name of "Grog"? I adopted the name from a character in
a syndicated cartoon strip, "B.C."
by Johnny Hart, in the local newspaper.
I have a remarkable resemblance to the "uncivilized, bearded, mangy-looking,
little Neanderthal varmint"!
Grog on his 18-foot river raft, just "floating and bloating"
on some "flatwater" between the "whitewater" rapids. Colorado River in
the Grand Canyon, October, 1990.
Are you wondering,"What is whitewater?" Try this! Grog's
"Run" in Lava Falls Rapid! Please be patient. It may take a
while for the sequence of photos to load. It should be worth the wait,
Have you ever done anything "really stoopid" in your life? I
have, many times. Without a doubt, though, the "stoopidest" thing that
I've ever done was, on a bet from a friend, I came out of the chute on
a rodeo bull! To document the event, I wrote a story entitled: Bull
Rider. I'm really not much of a writer, but the story and the
"peekchurs" might be worth a giggle or two!