Monday, April 13, 2015

K - Kings Bay

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When I was on the Canopus, it was homeported in Kings Bay, GA.  (these photos were grabbed off the NSB Facebook page)

Kings Bay is a HUGE, beautiful base with a good bunch of it protected wetlands.  This is the home of the US Atlantic Fleet submarine force.  The base was set up so every building is with a 15 minute walk and shuttles took you from the front area back to the waterfront.  It has all of the facilities that every other base has - medical, dental, schools, daycare, a golf course, the admin buildings.

When I was faced with the unpleasant (to me - other peope love it!) prospect of becoming a Boatswain's Mate (being a low-ranking nobody that had dropped out of a technical school, I worked in deck department - chipping & painting) I looked around to see what I would be interested in doing instead.  NSB had a weather office and since weather forecasting and such is interesting, I went and talked to the people who worked there.  So I had thoughts of becoming an Aerographer's Mate. That would have been pretty awesome, although I likely wouldn't have spent much time on a ship.  I don't recall what happened, probably that I screwed around and didn't have enough time to get my qualifications done, so instead I got into the post office with the thought that I could have a great job when I got out of the Navy.

Kings Bay is located near St. Marys GA and about 7 miles from the Florida border.  We made lots of road trips into Jacksonville and Fernadina Beach.  St. Marys was the cutest little southern town.  I loved to drive around and look at the houses and I think I was shocked to see palm trees in peoples yards like we have maples here!

I lived on the ship for a while, but then got an apartment off base.  My bedroom overlooked the base and every night at 10:30, base security would drive around the perimeter road and their headlights would shine in my window.

This is pretty awesome - the USS Bancroft was decommissioned and instead of scrapping it into razorblades like the Canopus (sniff) was - they recycled the sail into a monument and it proudly stands by one of the gates into the base.  This was dedicated in April 2000, on the 100th anniversary of the submarine forces.

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  1. Interesting post - I never paid much attention to submarines until we moved to Norfolk and I met some submarine wives. We were fortunate to be invited to the USS MINNESOTA commissioning in September of 2013 and now that we live on what must be the King's Bay of the West Coast, I'm getting a whole lot more familiar with the submarine world. We started our Navy days at Naval Station Mayport and visited Fernandina Beach several times. The Shrimp Festival was awesome and I have a little shrimp in a boat with "Fernandina Beach" painted on it hanging on my Christmas tree. I'm really enjoying your Navy Days A to Z.

    1. I loved Fernandina Beach! We went there a lot! Never made it to any festivals, tho, we just went when the whim hit us.
      it's funny that I was stationed around subs for 2 years, but never toured one until the USS Michigan visited Everett, WA when I was stationed there some years later. And being from Michigan, I couldn't NOT tour it!


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