Don Kazimir, LTJG
LTJG Don Kazimir aboard the USS Savage in July 1959
Left to right Cary Levy (from Georgia), and George Munnich. January 1960.
Jim Moon, Tom Judge, and Tom Farnham. January 1960.
Don Kazimir's roommate, LTJG Tom Judge. January 1960.
X. O. in stabilized bunk during 25 roll. January 1960.
Ensign Jim McLendon. January 1960.
Lt. Ed Hamilton on the bridge. January 1960.
Side boys ready for brass to come aboard. Ensign Glenn Skaggs in center. January 1960.
"Savage was my first Navy assignment after graduating from Columbia Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps (NROTC). I reported aboard on a gray day in February 1958 with my shiny new gold ensign stripes and was warmly greeted by an experienced Chief who helped me with my bags. He led me to the After Officer's Quarters (AOQ) and was so respectful I was somewhat embarrassed.
DER-386 was a great place to start a Navy career. The ship was very modern and squared away. We had a good wardroom group and I made friends quickly. As junior ensign, I got all the high level jobs like showing movies and buying the wardroom food in downtown Seattle.
I had never been seasick before but it happened enroute station after passing Cape Flattery. My first mid watch was awful - seasick and sleepy but I got better after eating crackers and peanut butter. Eventually I learned to take Bonine the morning before, the night before, and the morning we got underway. I'll never forget giving a lecture in the Combat Information Center (C.I.C.) while bucking heavy seas. The electronic technicians and radarmen got quite a kick out of watching a green ensign get very green.
I became a good shiphandler while on station - one shaft, one engine and maneuvering to pick up Japanese fishing balls. We found plenty and most of the crew were able to take one home.
Those reliable diesel engines were great as long as we had plenty of "Liquid Steel" to repair leaks in the cooling jackets.
One particularly memorable event was the time I went to C.I.C. and lo and behold there was an albatross walking around. We never did find out who pulled that prank.
Tropical hours at Pearl were great. We worked till noon, ate lunch and walked across the pier to the "O" Club for tennis and swimming. This was followed by a snack, 18 holes of golf at the Navy Marine course, dinner, and a movie. And we actually got paid.
After watching the cool submarines across the base at Pearl, I applied to subschool and left in December of 1960.
I ended my Navy career the summer of 1967 and became Captain of the Ben Franklin, a deep diving research submarine being built in Switzerland by Grumman Aerospace. We spent 30 days submerged exploring the Gulfstream in 1969 from Florida to Nova Scotia."
by Donald J. Kazimir
Copyright 2008, Proceedings
U. S. Naval Institute
article used with permission
(L. to R.) Chief Electronics Technician Hopkins, Master Chief Shupzinski, and Jim Moon 01/1960.