"I was sworn into the U.S. Navy on June 10, 1943 when I was 17 years old. I was sent to Farragut, Idaho for my basic training which I completed July 27, 1943, Company 414-43, Regiment 3, Battalion 10. After a 30 day leave I was shipped out of Oakland, California on the USS SKINNER on August 27, 1943 to Noumea, New Caledonia. I arrived in Noumea on September 17, 1943 where I worked at the ammunition dump loading explosives. On November 1, 1943 there was a terrible explosion at the nickel docks killing between 110 to 120 men. It was a very traumatic experience and will always live in my memory. On February 26, 1944 I was accepted for radio school and completed my instruction on July 15, 1944. I was a radioman there until September when I left for Midway Island on the USS LCI(G) 19. I was stationed there at the U.S. Naval operating base until May 5, 1945. After a 30 day leave I was sent to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii where I was a radioman until July 27, 1946 when I was transferred to the Navy Separation Center in Bremerton, Washington where I was discharged on August 14, 1946.
The following photos are from the book Southwest of 0° - 180° "A Collection of Photographs" which was given to all the men in my unit of the U.S. Navy stationed in Noumea, New Caledonia during 1944 as a gift from Admiral Halsey."