Best Friends Major Bill McCarthy, Col. Ray Nash, Capt. Walt Brinkman, Major Fred Kirby
Best Moment I have to say there were several best moments: My best moment was when I got promoted to Staff Sergeant (E-5). I thought that I would pull a surprise on the officers I was working with in Bomber Ops on the 6 p.m. - 6 a.m. shift. Just before mindnight on my last day as an E-4, I left the office to take a break and go for dinner and went off to change into my new shirt with the 4th stripe. I checked back into the office close to midnight and was hoping to surprise everyone. Well, these officers already new of my promotion and had a bottle of sparkling cider ready to uncork. We worked our asses off that night on the crew briefings but we still managed to have a great time celebrating my promotion to E-5.
The going home parties at the Swan Lake Hotel were a lot of fun with a lot of serious drinking going on as we wished the very best to the lucky officer. The Christmas Show with Bob Hope and his beauties (Connie Stevens and the Golddiggers) was a night that everyone should have enjoyed - I certainly did.
I enjoyed going to the beach on-base just to get that tan or to fish (never caught anything) and to Pattaya Beach. These are other great moments that I relish from my last year serving in the Air Force.
Worst Moment Getting drunk more than once.
Other Memories I use to love watching the Buffs taking off fully loaded with bombs while on the beach at U-T. All the Admin guys in Bomber Ops, except me, got to go up on a B-52 mission after we were qualified at the altitude chamber on Guam. When my incentive trip was due, the AF called them off because the missions were becoming more dangerous. I was really pissed because I couldn't go on a mission as I was so psyched up when the time came for me to go to Guam to get qualified to fly on a B-52. I still would love to go up on a B-52 before they retire them all. Sadly, leaving Thailand was the end of my Air Force career. I was at the end of my first enlistment period. The Air Force recruiter at U-Tapao said that they would send me to work in the Pentagon if I re-enlisted. I chose instead to leave the Air Force to get a college degree. I was at 3 years 8 months so they gave me an early-out from my 4-year contract. The flight back to the U.S. took me to Travis AFB and that is where I was discharged within 24 hours after landing. I got my BS Degree 3 years later since I had already completed some college courses before I joined the Air Force and 2 Accounting courses I took while at KIS. As I look back at the age of 67 and reminiss, I could kick myself in the ass for giving up the great Air Force career I had and the opportunities to travel the world for free. I don't know why I never considered re-joining the active Air Force or going into the Air Force Reserves after I got that degree - it never crossed my mind.