Chet Headley
Michelson Memorabilia 1964-65

Spec Tech Textbook

Spec Tech Manual. I plan to digitize the complete manual. Once that has been completed it will be available for download should any of you want a copy.

Chet's Rifle

The Browning rifle that I bought at the Navy Exchange in 1965.

Kodak Box Camera

This is the "Kodak Brownie Hawkeye Flash Model" camera I used to take the photographs of "Old Shitbag and Her Buddies", Bernie Max Strean Jr., the "Underway" picture and the photos of our trip through the Panama Canal. It's a 1950 model and still works. Try finding 620 film for it. It can be done, just have to look long and hard. It has some signs of rust on its few metal parts, which is probably due to my using it at sea and never thinking that it should be wiped clean afterwards.

Foul Weather Jacket

My extreme foul weather jacket from Michelson, and the jacket liner.

Read the story of how I acquired this jacket here.



USAFI algebra textbook.

Bowditch Memorabilia 1965-66

Pocket Knife

I picked up this "Toad Sticker" in Barcelona during our last in-port (Nov 1966) before heading back to Hoboken USA for overhaul. Believe it or not, this was the mid sized model. The large one wouldn't fit the inside pocket of my suit jacket so I bought the largest one that would.

Back in 1995 I was in Cleveland Ohio to do some research at the Cuyahoga County courthouse in downtown Cleveland. Before I could get in I had to empty my pockets into a tray a la airport check-in. As I was dumping all my metal objects into the tray the guard assisting me went ballistic. You would have "thunk" I was the Mad Bomber carrying a Suitcase Nuke. I couldn't figure out what all the commotion was about until the head deputy sheriff came over and asked what I was doing with all the weaponry. I didn't know what he was talking about as all I had was a pocketknife with a folded three and a half inch blade, a pair of handcuffs and some 9mm ammo but no gun, (I left it in the car). I darn near went to jail that afternoon. It seems that in Cleveland the longest blade you can legally carry is about one half inch. I don't know what they do in Cleveland's Steak Houses; maybe they chop the meat for you. The deputies confiscated all my “gadgets” and then let me in to do my research. Can you imagine what they would have done had I been carrying the knife from Barcelona, I’d probably still be residing in one of Ohio’s ‘Gray-Bar Hotels”. When I left the courthouse a deputy followed me everywhere I went in downtown Cleveland. I took him to places he probably didn’t know existed. Hopefully he absorbed a modicum of culture during our “travels”. I did manage to retrieve my “stuff” before I left Ohio thanks to my good friend, Sam Messina who was a high-ranking Ohio Peace officer at the time. Sam was a great friend; we played Little League together, went to High School together, and worked together after high school. Sam’s gone now, but not forgotten. The moral to this story is: Don't carry a knife in Cleveland, only dirt bags are afforded that “privilege”. I wonder where the term “Mistake on the Lake” came from.

Hub-Cap, Santander Spain, 1966

The hub-cap that I liberated from a Spanish Seat (Fiat) parked in Santander Spain during the Bowditch's port call there in 1966. The story about this will follow.

Souvenir of Spain

Carved wooden statue of Don Quixote. His spear is missing and he has suffered a few broken fingers and a few extra chips in his hat, but he’s still around.

Carlos I Brandy

I bought two bottles of Carlos I and a bottle of Cardinal Mendoza to bring back to the states in 66. When I returned home I gave one bottle of Carlos I to my dad and kept the other bottle of Carlos I and the Cardinal Mendoza for myself. A couple of months later I left for the Michelson where I stayed for almost three years. When I returned home I looked for my bottles but couldn’t find them. I asked my Dad where they were. He said; “Hell I drank them. They sure were good.” I never even got to taste them. The bottle in the picture is a replacement that I picked up in 1997 when I stopped in Hong Kong on my return from Singapore. As you can tell I have yet to open this bottle. If I live to be 100 I’ll open it on my birthday and have a drink. I’ll save the rest for my 150th.

Bullfighter's Sword

Bull Fighter’s Sword I bought in Barcelona 1966. On the way back to the states Hal Burnett was playing around with it and stabbed it through his mattress, spring and the bottom of his bunk. Didn’t hurt the sword, the point is still sharp. Our room was next to the Navy guard shack. Hal had the lower bunk next to the passageway. If anyone who ever had that bunk wondered where the triangular hole in the bottom came from, you can stop wondering.

Los Caracoles Restaurant, Barcelona

This is the souvenir postcard I received the night a bunch of the crew had dinner at this restaurant. It was one of the more memorable meals I have had. The Calamari was excellent, and the Sangria was, like drinking the best fruit punch imaginable, until you had to stand up. It was so good I needed help walking afterwards.

Michelson Memorabilia 1967-72

Shotgun 1967-68

Shotgun I bought at the Navy Exchange. I used to sit on the forecastle and shoot flying fish. I must have felt real macho shooting those “dangerous” wild animals. Just another thing I look back on with regret.

The Hand, The Phillipines
October - November 1967

I bought this carved "hand" while in the Philippines in late Oct 1967. Thought it would make a nice desk ornament and would remind me of my IQ.

Speeding Ticket
October 27, 1969

A speeding ticket I received while at General Inst. Corp. of 100 Andrews Road, Hicksville, L.I. New York. I'm glad I didn't misplace it, as I never paid the thing. Maybe the cop that gave it to me will see the Web site.

Calendar 1969-72

My calendar from 1969-1972 while serving aboard Michelson as a GI Tech Rep.

The GI Monkey

Monkey given to me by Elton Ray Fleming when I took over for him as the senior GI rep. His wife gave it to Ray. It sailed with him for five years and with me for three. It hangs in my office here at home. It’s at least 41 years old and in fairly decent shape considering all the moving around it has experienced.

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