Into the Long Beach Naval Shipyard, 1965


In 1965 we received orders to take Shields to Long Beach for an overhaul and upgrade at the Long Beach Naval Shipyard.  The cruise up from San Diego was your usual fantastic California day and we stopped over at Seal Beach Naval Weapons Station and off loaded all our munitions.  

It was pretty amazing how much we had!

We proceeded to the shipyard where this young Ensign learned a lot from the old hands.  My Chief Commisaryman, a good-old Southern boy by the name of William Williams soon had his own crew of yard-birds in return for meals. By the end of the overhaul we had a new grill on the mess decks, new terrazzo floor in the galley and sparkling stainless steel everywhere.

Rumor had it the crew charged their time and materials to the aircraft carrier docks across from us.

Coming out of the shipyard we had sea trials where the ship was really pushed hard.  One test called for us to be going forward as fast as possible on all four boilers and then go to full back.  It was like going down a railroad track with no springs as it jarred your teeth out.  

During the overhaul all the repair parts were offloaded, inventoried, and restocked.  The electronic repair parts storeroom for some unknown reason was located right over the port screw.  Maybe that contributed to the fact that electronic stores was the only area in the Supply Department that did not get 100 points in our following annual inspection from COMCRUDESPAC.  We did get an Outstanding with everyone in the department working hard and a little nautical gundecking.  

COMCRUDESPAC must have been impressed because they saw to it that it became my next duty station.

LTjg Lawrence L. Danforth, SC, USN