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Old 12-24-2012, 02:48 AM
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Default Ghost... or something, Christmas past.

A friend of mine found this Christmas card from my first submarine. It was made before I was on it, as it still has the hull number painted on it. Once the Soviets got good spy satellites and just spies, they stopped painting hull numbers on submarines. I had a streak there where I did like four or five Christmas and New Years in a row at sea. Just thought I'd share the card because I thought it was kind of cool. By the way, it was a great crew and I enjoyed those years. Still talk to a bunch of them. In fact I just got a call from one of them I had not seen since about 1980.
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Old 12-24-2012, 10:59 AM
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Default Re: Ghost... or something, Christmas past.

I have a son that's in the Navy, Guided Missle Destroyer. He's home for Christmas for the first time in 4 years. So I can relate to the sacrifice you have done for your Country! Thank You for your service Dan!!
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Old 12-24-2012, 11:50 AM
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Default Re: Ghost... or something, Christmas past.

Thanks for sharing these memories with us Dan...not sure everybody here knows you were a submariner
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Old 12-24-2012, 01:52 PM
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Default Re: Ghost... or something, Christmas past.

OK, I should tell you guys the story of the long lost shipmate that just called me. Despite the unbelievable sounding story, I promise that every syllable of it is true.

I went to go have lunch at a place called the Round House in Pearl City, HI. The place was packed and they said "have a seat in the bar if you want, it will be a bit before you can get a table. So I walk in a have a seat. The TV was on and I'm watching what ever it was and having a cold beer while I wait. The next thing I know, they interrupt what ever it was with 'A breaking News' story. "Two sailors from the Thomas Jefferson are stuck 250' up on the cliff of the Pali Lookout" Rescue teams were on the way. "A third sailor fell off but is still alive." The guy that fell off was a cook we had and the guy that just called me out of the blue the other day.

What happened is they decided to climb the cliff, which is trespassing for I assume the reason they needed rescue for. They got about 250' up the face and it starts to rain. It becomes really hard to move at all then. They couldn't climb up and they couldn't climb back down. One of them slipped and fell about 15' and landed on a ledge. He broke several bones, the worst of which was his collar bone if I remember right.

At that point, they guy who ended up falling clean off, grabs a little bit of brush and leans out to see if the other guy is OK. The little plant comes off in his hand and he does a swn dive for 250' with the only thing saving him being a large tree at the bottom he went right down through. He did not break a single bone, but knocked about half of his teeth out and put this amazing looking dent right in the center of his forehead. It had 'cracks' running out in all directions from the dent like a kids drawing of the sun. It pushed his skull in like he had been hit with the round end of a ball pein hammer.

So he's laying under this tree unconscious for a while and comes to. When he does, he yells up to the other two "It's alright, come on down!" I still laugh everytime I think of that. They tell him to go find help so he starts down towards the homes and nobody would let him in for the first several homes. He finally finds one that lets him in and calls for help. They tell him to lay down on the entry rug till the ambulance gets there and picks him up.

I used to just spin the guy right up after that by looking at him and saying "Hey Karpinski, your divot's filling in nicely." He's the luckiest guy I know. Takes a 250' free fall without a parachute and does not break a bone. My buddy Fred who was a Sonar Tech on the same sub with me told me he had run into Karpinski about 10 years later and he still had the divot. His exact words were,"Oh that's permanent" I had asked if he still had the divot. How it didn't kill him I have no idea.

After we had gone to sea and finished our next patrol Karpinski was served papers for small claims court by the lady that put him on the entry way rug. He wrecked it by bleeding on it. Insult to injury.
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Old 12-24-2012, 02:00 PM
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Default Re: Ghost... or something, Christmas past.

Amazing story Dan
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Old 12-24-2012, 04:29 PM
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Default Re: Ghost... or something, Christmas past.

thats quite the story! remarkable that guy didn't die
thanks for sharing dan
cool card btw

casey
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Old 12-24-2012, 04:52 PM
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Default Re: Ghost... or something, Christmas past.

Amazingly, that's not even the best story we have from those days. I know it sounds weird but that was one of the best times of my life being on that sub.
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