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Early childhood military encounters/interactions


darkkwulfe
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As a child I lived 15 minutes from Ft. Dix and Mcguire Airbase and enjoyed many aircraft, military equipment encounters. C-141 and Kc-135 would fly over my house or nearby during their touch and go flights. Many summers I would hear and watch UH-1 then uh-60s, Ah-1 later Ah-64s, C-130s, and A-10 fly by and with the Aegis Test Site(called by locales as the Cruiser in the field) located in the neighboring town of Moorestown sometimes helicopters and jets would  conduct tests against it. One summer F-16s could be seen and hear conducting simulated attack runs on it. Also A-10 gun runs (brrrrt) could be watched from the road that ran along the Warren Grove Range in Eggharbor. I remember one day on my backporch a flight of 2 Ch-47s flew over and wow everything shock like crazy. The best part though was Fort Dix had a firepower Demostration each year (went to several) that had a squad demo m16s,m60,m2hb, mk19, m72, m136,  grenades and claymores. The range had trucks, m113, and an old sherman tank as targets. I believe the range was 1500-2000 yards in length. Also included a tour of the basic training reception building. Also Mcguire Airbase had a viewing area at the end of the runway that people could park and watch as aircraft took off and fly right over them. All this drove my interest in all things military. Anybody else have similar events in their childhood?

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During the summer Mcguire Airforce Base would have Airshows. Great part is Willow Grove Naval Airbase and Wilmington Airbase would also hold airshows, luckily on different weekends. Willow grove was where I first saw the F-117 stealth fighter fly and a British Tornado flight demo.😀

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  When I was a little kid we went to an open house at an Army base (perhaps in North Carolina).  They let the kids ride in a tank a few hundred yards out and back. They didn’t have space in the tank for all of us so I rode in the turret basket on top.  It had a big greasy tarp in it and a machine gun. 
  The ride was comfortable but I was disappointed I couldn’t ride in the tank

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Some may know this already,  but at a playground in Central America there were ko'd afvs.  Fell in love since.

Irony is much of my gaming connection with military stuff was flight sims on pc.  

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I also got to climb around an IJA tank (I don't know which type it was) at the Nimitz Museum in the early '70s.

Edited by Tim Sielbeck
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GaANG at drill convoys across Georgia highways during the 70s and 80s. I miss those MEDRC CUCVs deuces, 5 tons and other cold war vehicles. 

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I grew up on USAF bases so I got to see combat aircraft every day.  I still remember being at Wheeler AFB in '76 and seeing  a demo of a super quiet high speed helicopter.  My brain wants to say it was a YAH-64 but that's probably incorrect.  It gave me a long term love for helicopter gunships though.  I also got to sit in the cockpits of the Thunderbirds and Blue Angels so that was pretty cool.  And pissed through a fuselage tube and ate the famed USAF box lunch when we hitched a transport ride to Korea. 

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I grew up in Southern California and my father was an aerospace engineer. So at least one airshow a year (Miramar NAS, often another airshow at Brown Field), plus tours on various Navy ships. 

 

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20 minutes ago, nitflegal said:

I grew up on USAF bases so I got to see combat aircraft every day.  I still remember being at Wheeler AFB in '76 and seeing  a demo of a super quiet high speed helicopter.  My brain wants to say it was a YAH-64 but that's probably incorrect.  It gave me a long term love for helicopter gunships though.  I also got to sit in the cockpits of the Thunderbirds and Blue Angels so that was pretty cool.  And pissed through a fuselage tube and ate the famed USAF box lunch when we hitched a transport ride to Korea. 

In the 1970s, Hughes Helicopters developed a prototype of the OH-6 helo that was extremely quiet.

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/air-space-magazine/air-americas-black-helicopter-24960500/

 

 

 

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Farnborough air show televised, with Raymond Baxter commentating.

A visit to Bovington tank museum with school.

A family day out to what was later called Firepower - the annual expenditure of things that go bang by the Army. A memorable ride in a Stalwart.

But mostly, the occasional Sunday lunch at the Sergeant's Mess at West Moors camp, where my father had been senior Warrant Officer and was a permanent honorary mess member on his retirement. I was a cadet there, too.

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8 hours ago, Ivanhoe said:

In the 1970s, Hughes Helicopters developed a prototype of the OH-6 helo that was extremely quiet.

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/air-space-magazine/air-americas-black-helicopter-24960500/

 

 

 

Might have been it!  What I remember was sitting in bleachers and they talked about how quiet the helo was and then told us all to turn around and the damned thing was hovering pretty close behind us.

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 I grew up in Scotland in the 70 and 80's so there wasn't a lot of military bases around most of them were in the south of England. I guess the MOD wanted to save the Russians some warheads by keeping all their bases close together. Although Edinburgh and Stirling castle are still official military bases, Stirling still having my mothers regimental museum, yes she did wear army boots but only as a TA reserve. Most of the interactions was the recruiting stall they had at the local fairs where they usually had a land rover or other truck you could climb on but they had a table where you could handle the rifles under supervision.  They did sometimes put on a show doing staged section attacks across a field. Taking care to avoid the dog crap land mines.

 

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2 hours ago, Wobbly Head said:

 I grew up in Scotland in the 70 and 80's so there wasn't a lot of military bases around most of them were in the south of England. I guess the MOD wanted to save the Russians some warheads by keeping all their bases close together. Although Edinburgh and Stirling castle are still official military bases,

Did you get to see the famed Kakikaze Highland Regiment? 

Edited by rmgill
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1 hour ago, rmgill said:

Did you get to see the famed Kakikaze Highland Regiment? 

Isn't that the  Famed McKamikaze Highland Regiment?

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Growing up in a community of WW2 vets and with Uplands still a military base, airplanes of all types flew over the house as the community was under the flight path for the runway. Heard the sonic boom when the USAF F-104 broke all the glass and did other damage to the new civilian terminal.

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2 hours ago, NickM said:

Isn't that the  Famed McKamikaze Highland Regiment?

No, that's the McDonald's Tribute Deep Fried, Happy Meal.

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WAAAAY Back when I was young, on 19th Ave there was a park that used to have the shell of an F9 Panther Jet on 'jacks' as a play structure. The cockpit was stripped of all usable material but I think the joystick was still there. Now I know the Panther had a solid nose, but I seem to recall the nose cone was removed so (if you were skinny and NOT claustrophobic) you could crawl thru the tailpipe and out the nose.

Alas, after going thru several other old jets, the powers that be removed them, because after even a few encounters, I could see a serious injury resulting from playing on the thing.

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Grandfather was COS and CIC of the Royal Dutch Air Force (1954–56). I liked to take me with him as much as possible on his visits to air bases, factories, and other places. Riding in his official car with flag and all the troops saluting ... 😍 
My place at the Dutch Military Academy (KMA) was assured. 😉 
Then my father decided to go the Mexico ... 😭

My step-father was a marine (USMC) sergeant. In Holland he guarded the consulate, the embassy and the MAG headquarters. Always enjoyed visiting him off-duty in the "Marine Barracks".

--
Leo

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14 hours ago, NickM said:

WAAAAY Back when I was young, on 19th Ave there was a park that used to have the shell of an F9 Panther Jet on 'jacks' as a play structure. The cockpit was stripped of all usable material but I think the joystick was still there. Now I know the Panther had a solid nose, but I seem to recall the nose cone was removed so (if you were skinny and NOT claustrophobic) you could crawl thru the tailpipe and out the nose.

Alas, after going thru several other old jets, the powers that be removed them, because after even a few encounters, I could see a serious injury resulting from playing on the thing.

How did you get by the cockpit in your crawl?

OIP._0aMdfZZOl6THFaI0qWG5gHaE4?pid=ImgDe

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