From: Dwight Groom (Sea Fox 54-55)
When the USS Tiru, SS416 (my 1st Sub) left Pearl Harbor in the spring of 1953, for a long Pacific tour, the Captain (Full Commander) Cappello, soon announced that he wanted every man aboard to be fully "qualified for Submarines" when we returned to Pearl Harbor. He assigned every unqualified man to an Officer, who would be personally responsible to supervise each man's training. A daily schedule of training was established for each man and "key" boat personnel (well qualified to teach) were established in every compartment. During our 4 on 8 off watch schedules, we were required to spend at least 2 hours each day studying all of the Submarine's operating systems. About once a week, our qualifying officer, would test us to see if we "qualified" on that particular training. When we returned to Pearl Harbor, the Tiru had a 100% qualified crew. Admiral Stump and a couple of other high ranking officers came aboard the Tiru, to honor Captain Cappello and all of the crew members. The Crew's parents, wifes, children and sweethearts were allowed on the deck to watch the qualification ceremony. About 15 to 20 newly qualified Submariners (myself included) had our new Silver Dolphins pinned onto our jumpers by Admiral Stump himself (I still have those Dolphin). He congratulated each man as he pinned the Dolphins on their dress white jumper. Afterwards, there was a great celebration as the newly qualified were thrown (high and far) overboard in their dress whites. After all the newly qualified had been thrown overboard, Captain Cappello announced to the delight of everyone present: "There is no man aboard, who can throw me overboard." Soon a husky 1st Class Engineman, Covell, by name, challenged the Skipper. They were both about the same size and pretty well matched physically. Admiral Stump was still aboard and he and the other officers were thoroughly enjoying the struggle. But soon Covell got the Skipper off balance and leaning back, over the side of the Sub. The Skipper was holding on to Covell's arms and when he realized he could not regain his balance, he suddenly squatted and leaped backwards, dragging Covell with him. As they both splashed into the water, everyone cheered loudly and had a very hearty laugh. Some months later, Commander Cappello (who held a law degree) was transferred to Washington, DC as the Judge Adjutant General's Assistant (JAG). When he saluted the Union Jack, and left the sub, he had tears streaming down his cheeks. So did almost everyone aboard.
From: George Long (Sea Fox 58-64)
Year: 62 or 63. 0400 to 0800 below decks watch and time to blow sanitary tanks. Forward tank
went well, after batter was a different story. The watch closed al drain valves then bled in the proper air pressure, opened the quick throw and nothing happened! So, in went more air
pressure, opened the quick throw and still nothing happened!! So, in went more air pressure
and by this time we had 35 or so psi in #2 sanitary.
It dawned on the watch like a ray of sunshine that he forgot to open the hull stop valve in the
forward engine room. After opening the hull stop he then opened the quick throw and --------
painted the port side of the Sperry BROWN with toilet paper hanging from the hand rail on the
Needless to say that the deck force of the Sperry were really ticked off, along with the Razorback as we were tied up outboard of the Razorback which was tied to the port side of the Sperry. It was fun watching the clean up take place!!!
Want to submit a story for the TINS Page? Very easy to do! Just write it up and send it to email@example.com or snail mail it to: George Arnold, 23132 W. 71st Terr, Shawnee, KS 66227-5503. Please be as brief as you can.
From: Lon Schmidt (Sea Fox 55-56)
Blowing the After Battery Head:
In the Navy, bathrooms are called heads. Same in the Air Force and Marine Corps. The Army calls them latrines.
A Diesel submarine had three: one each in the Forward and After Torpedo Rooms, and one in the After Battery Compartment. The After Battery also contained a large sleeping area, the mess decks, and the galley.
Commodes were flushed with a small amount of sea water into a holding tank called, somewhat amusingly, Sanitary Tank. When the tank was full the contents were blown overboard with compressed air. Blowing sanitary was a delicate task because if not done just right, the sewage blew back into the boat and all over the sailor doing the blowing. The After Battery Sanitary was normally blown by a mess cook who was already on duty in the galley. The duty cook would call the diving officer on the phone to get permission. If any problem arose, the auxiliaryman-of-the-watch would be dispatched to assist. He was an Engineman
or Machinist Mate and had better knowledge of valves and pipes than a mess cook. Needless to say, the auxiliarymen were never amused to be summoned.
One day permission was requested and granted to blow the After Battery Sanitary Tank. Shortly thereafter, trouble was reported and the auxiliary dispatched. Grumbling, he headed aft. On arrival, he found s___ and toilet paper all over the place. The cursing could be heard two compartments away.
The cook quietly scrapped a two-finger glob of peanut butter from a nearby jar and ambled back to the head. Arriving on the scene, he asked theauxiliaryman what the problem was. The answer was immediate and furious. "Your #$%^@& mess cook has blown s___ all over the place."
The cook reached up to the overhead (ceiling), scrapped of a glob of peanut butter which he had kept concealed in his hand, tasted it, and reported, "Yep, That's S____." The auxiliary promptly puked.
From: George Long (58-64)
Sometime in early 1960 or '61 when the USS Queenfish was changing home ports to Subic Bay, a certain Phillipino national on the Sea Fox put in for a transfer to the Queenfish so he could go home. This was denied because he was a 1st class electrician, and considered a necessary part of the crew. On the 0400-0800 BLD watch, he closed all the necessary drum valves - except the galley sink - and blew the #2 sanitary into the galley and mess hall. It took 3 days to clean up and the crew had to eat on the Sperry. Transfer granted!