Friday, November 9, 2018

AN OLD FAVORITE

I had the good fortune in the Navy to work for and with many men of outstanding wit and character. One of the best was Wild Bill Snyder. He was the one that told the story of himself at a younger age and mind you, when I worked for him he was nought but a Lieutenant Commander, so a pipsqueak in these rarefied times.

He was in a billet, chief engineer of steam, that used to be what they call a spot promotion because hard. His old destroyer was in company with a brand new cruiser fresh out of the shipyard and due to commence its full speed trial. The insolent cruiser captain sent, via a flashlight, an insulting message to the ancient destroyer telling it to try to remain within visual signalling range and set about its full speed trial.

Both ships raced to the horizon except that the cruiser suffered a crippling engineering casualty. The ancient destroyer kept blasting along until at the very horizon sent back a flashlight message of its own to the crippled cruiser.

"Slowing down to remain within visual signalling range."

A ship's captain of any rank used to have joy in getting underway. Not sure if it remains the same today.

1 comment:

  1. In the USN of today, there cannot be much satisfaction in Command. To many people commanding from afar,and too much lawfare.

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