Robert Lee Hogg
To: RALPH PAPA
I have digitally scanned my Flight Log Book for all the months that I was in VP-8.
I will burn the data to a CD ROM (85 MB's) and send it to you. I was in VP-8 for 45 months. I flew 23 months in #131410 from 3 June 1957 to 7 April 1959. I haven't added it up, but it must be around 800 hours in that plane.
It was assigned to us for modification for an assigned "CNO Project Julie" . Therefore, we managed to keep it as our crew aircraft as we moved to NAF Chincoteague 15 march 1958 and to Breeze Point, NAS Norfolk 9 March 1959.. I think we transitioned to new SP-2E Julie/Jezebel ASW factory installed systems in April. It was at this time that I moved up PPC with my own Crew 11 and was no longer basically a Tacco! I had spent three years functioning as a Julie Tactical Officer in an agreement with Capt Nasworthy. When Capt Nasworthy became the C.O. of VP-8, he called me into his office and propose an agreement with me. We were in the middle of the CNO "Project Julie" tactic development for fleet operations and he wanted to finish it with first class acceptance. So he ask me if I would accept remaining as Julie navigator / tactics officer on the crew for a third year, in extension to the normal two year tour for Naval Pilot progress to co-pilot / PPC status. In return, he promised to insure that I got all the PPC flight training hours that I required and would get designated on time, in accordance with regulations. Also, the squadron was due to get new aircraft when we moved to Norfolk. These would have all new factory Julie / Jezebel installed equipment. He promised that when these planes arrived, I could inspect them and have first choice of which one I wanted. He would take my second choice! He lived up to both promises. I was designated PPC on 17 February 1959 and the new planes arrived in Norfolk in April 1959. I picked out my plane #128345, they painted my name on it and I was a PPC with crew ready to go!
I had a year to fly as PPC with VP-8 before I departed, on 21 June 1960, for my next duty assignment.
We were on deployment in Argentia. I had received orders for 3 year Engineering Electronics Master Degree at the U.S Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, California. Years later it was redesignated as MS Computer Science.
As I look back, I would bet that I am the only Navy Pilot that had to spend three years functioning as a Tacco in order to get to be an ASW PPC. I now live about 10 miles from Dana Point, CA. It is named after Richard Dana, who wrote a classic book, "Two Years Before the Mast" about serving aboard a merchant sailing ship that was skinning wild pony's and throwing their hid's over the cliffs here at what's now Dana Pt.
Perhaps, I should write a story about "Three Years Before the Wing Beam" about listening to pilots yelling "Mark on Top, Now, Now, Now" and ordering PDC's and smokes to be thrown out a window at evading submarines!
Enough funnies for tonight,
I hope, I am not boring you to tears with some of these tales.
Re: More VP-8 nostalgia
To: Robert Lee Hogg
Cc: Carolyn Magee ; Leon Gilchrist ; Larry & Marion Smith ; beth perry ; Don Rickel
3 Files View Slideshow Download All
VP8_Crew_11.jpg (1535KB); VP8_P2V5F_131410.jpg (1979KB); Crew11_nose_art_by_Ralph Papa.jpg (1434KB)
Those 3 photographs you sent are absolutely great!
The photo of LC5 in flight ( P2V5F #131410 now resting at NAS JAX) is an excellent photo. I'll bet the squadron would love a copy for display in their flight crew lounge at JAX. As mentioned in your earlier e-mail, you flew in that aircraft in 1957 and 58, when Cdr. Bill Thomas was C.O. of VP8. Later when I joined VP8, we flew together in LC11 BurNo 128345 as also verified in your log book from 1960. Can't figure how we were flying an earlier BurNo with LC-11 in 1960 than in LC-5 in1958. Seems like a demotion.
The other crew photo with LC-1l looks like it was taken on the flight line at Thule, Greenland during our deployment in 1960.
Yes, that's me on the far right (50 years younger).
In your photo from top left standing is: Hoover (Ordinance); Frank Taffel (Radio); Lou Sherry (1st Mech./Plane Capt.); Lt. Bob Hogg (Pilot); LtJG Mike West (Co-Pilot); Ralph Papa (First Tech).Kneeling below is Wilkes (2nd Mech); LtJG Leon Gilchrist (Navigator); and another officer I can't identify. (Could be he was flying with us as an "Ice Observer). Check out those fashionable "poopie suits".....Can still feel the discomfort from the collar tight around my neck. After you left VP8, Frank Taffel died in a car accident in his red Triumph sports car not long after we returned to NAS Norfolk.
Also, thanks for sending that excellent photo my painting on LC-11's wheel-well door. Not too bad a likeness of you, your co-pilot, Mr. West and Mr. Gilchrist.
Thanks again Bob! I'll add these three to our photo archives at www.vp8alumni.org and will also enter this correspondence into the guestbook. In the 1960 photo archives there's another photo of our crew 11 where you can just make out the painting on the wheel well door.
I hope you're planning to join us at our reunion in Jacksonville in Oct 2011.
copy to: Leon Gilchrist
From: Robert Lee Hogg
To: RALPH PAPA
Sent: Fri, April 30, 2010 3:25:27 AM
Subject: More VP-8 nostalgia
I am pretty sure that the nose door picture was done at Norfolk.
Don't know the time frame of the in flight picture, but it is probably of the Quonset era.
But I don't know how that could be, because I think that that is you on the right in the picture.
The crew 11 picture is a mystery to me! Note the large wing tip fuel tanks. I think they could carry 750 gals.
The later small tanks could only hold 350 gals. However, I think you can read "P2V5F" behind the search light.
We used to have more fun with that search light! It was always suspected that the Russian fish processing ship that was always over the Flemish Cap fishing grounds, was also refueling their submarines. So every now and then we were requested to go dark and silent, lights out, power back and glide in on then and light them up with that big candle on the starboard wing! On a hot summer night, it was great fun! Naked bodies would go running in all directions, both male and female! The Russians treated their woman the same as men! Unfortunately, the ones at sea were uglier than the men! As far as I know the Russians never made an official complaint about our activities.
One night, we made a mistake and lit up the nuclear passenger liner, the USS United States.
Re: P2V-5F Buno 131410
Robert Lee Hogg
To: RALPH PAPA
8 Files View Slideshow Download All
June 1960 Logbook.tif (2214KB); VP-8 Officer List 1956.doc (26KB); Air Medal Award 1965.jpg (38KB); Bronze Star Medal Awarded 1969 Citation.JPG (34KB); COMNAVFORV Fitness Reprot Dec 1058 -Dec 1969 pg1.tif (2585KB); COMNAVFORV Fitness Reprot Dec 1058 -Dec 1969 pg2.tif (2617KB); VP-4 Crew 7 at Saigon 196503.jpg (43KB); Letter of Commendation for VP-4 'Battle Efficiency Pennant' 3rd Award.tif (2522KB)
Attached is a copy of my logbook for June 1960.
I found a VP-8 Officer Rooster for 1956. Looks like my memory wasn't so good on the spelling of some names!
Small World, if you notice, we made a flight into Thule Greenland on the 11th June. I ran into an old St. Albans WVa High School best friend that had moved to Texas and gotten an NROTC scholarship to Yale. I had gotten an NROTC scholarship in WVa to IIIT in Chicago.. He was a Civil Engineer and had got out of the navy at first opportunity. By chance, I met him while we where refueling in Thule. He was in charge of updating the Thule Ballistic Missile Early Warning Radar System (Thule BMEWS) He later built the anchorage for the Staten Island Verrazano-Narrows Bridge.
Unfortunately it ends on 14 June. I had received orders to the Naval Post Graduate School Monterey, California to get a master's degree in Engineering Electronics. As things turned out, I got an MS in Computer Science '63.
Looks like logs & records missed recording our flight on the 15th. I would never have logged the landing at Suffolk County anyway! It was totally illegal, no customs, not on flight itinerary,etc. The next day I said a sad goodbye to VP-8. LT Carden took over as crew PPC and was out practicing GCA's there at Argentia. I was having a had time getting a flight back to the states out of Argentia. There were several departing out of Harmon, AFB on the South West end of Newfoundland. I called him up on the squadron frequency and conned him into flying me over to Harmon. It was short flight, worked out great! I am not sure that those fighter jocks appreciated the "High Performance Take Off", you know, the one where the P2 ends up at 3000 ft and 95 knots / full flaps!
Made me proud, never the less, it was the last I ever saw of VP-8. My next encounter was VP-4 and my son was a PPC in VP-50.
VP-8 had a pronounce influence on my naval career! I never got out of the maintenance department, much to my desire! With the Captains recommendation, I was selected for postgraduate school. I never had a shipboard sea tour of duty, although I spent a great deal of time at sea testing systems for OPTEVFOR. As Deputy, Naval Research and Development Unit, Vietnam (Dec 1968 - Dec 1969), in support of COMNAVFORV, VADM Elmo Zumwalt. He awarded me a Bronze Star with Combat "V" for several of the 44 missions that I was directly involved. Next tour was with the NAVAIRSYSTEMCOM (Jan 1970 - Apr 1974) Chairman of the Software Configuration Control Board for the P3C Orion Upgrade Program and Project Officer for the ASW Tactical Support Center. Responsible for getting competitively bid procurements and on schedule installations of four systems each year for four years, total of 16 systems. The last year I spent in the Navy was at the NADC, Warminster, PA. I was Superintendent for maintenance of two large Control Data 6600 Computers. They were having significant problems when I arrived and were losing money that they should have been making by renting time out to various institutions that where doing contract work for the government. The 6600 Computers were the
New generation of Seymour Cray's 1604 Computer that I had studied at the USNPGS, Monterey. I quickly found three problems that causing most of their troubles. Once they were corrected, the center was turning a profit and we were able to afford upgrade to the latest most powerful operating system "Kronos"
I retired 10 June 1975 after 20 years of a very enjoyable career. I have been involved personal computer design, marketing and maintenance ever since! It was been a great life and continues to be so.
I will send you some stories of the high lights as I get around to writing them for my grand kids. There is another store that I was involved in, that might had saved two of VP-26 P3B aircraft that were shot down by a Cambodian gunboat in the spring of1958. On 5 June 1965 a Cambodian gunboat had fired on us (VP-4 Crew 7) while on patrol over the Gulf of Siam, near the North Pirate Island. There was flak all around us as first reported by the aft station look out. Since we flew unarmed patrols, our only response was to evaded at once! Jets "On", Spoilers "On", Max Power, climb like hell, hard turn port, hard reverse starboard, hind behind the South Pirate Island as quickly as possible! Thanks to Lockheed, the P2V's spoilers allowed it a roll rate like a fighter plane! There was some confusion in that the NAVFORV briefer's had issued us out of date KACs, so they couldn't decode our report of the incident. Therefore, in order to avoid embarrassing themselves, they cancel the requirement for us to be debriefed! Therefore the was no record that the Cambodians were defending that area. Proper SOP might have provide a data bank enter that would have alerted future flights to be cautious! I'll forward you the full store, if you are interested. There was a closure discovery in 1987 by a fisherman.
Have a great day,
From: RALPH PAPA
Date: 4/28/2010 7:13:32 AM
To: Robert Lee Hogg
Subject: Re: P2V-5F Buno 131410
Good morning and Thank you Bob,
Wow! When I took that photo at NAS Jax last week of P2V-5F #131410, .... had no idea of it's history with you and VP8.
Thanks for sending the logs, patches and Commendation Letter from Cdr. Bill Thomas. I'll definitely add them to our "historic photos and documents" on our VP8alumni.org website. If okay with you, I'd like to also include your email below in the website's "Guestbook".
I joined your flight crew in 1958 in Chincoteague after all that development. Specifically remember flying the mercury recovery mission in locating the capsule with the 1st monkey "Sam" launched into space on Dec. 4th, 1959. I operated the A-scope in the bow to home in on the capsule. I believe you were the pilot that day and Whitey Meier was our radioman. Would love to see the logbook from that day. Whitey and I gave our account to author Colin Campbell who co-authored the 2007 book, "Animals in Space".
Following is what I wrote in my diary on June 15, 1960, the day my father passed away and VP8 flew me from Argentia to Suffolk AFB in Riverhead, NY: (Would love to see your log for that day as well.)
June 15, 1960; 0800: Crew had day off but went to hanger to pick up our checks. At 1045 was standing by table in our room watching a game of some sorts played by crewmwmbers Frank Taffel and Frank Abend. Lt Hogg and Lt. McCardle came to barracks and stood outside the door to our room - told me I had some bad news - Mr. Hogg gave me a teletype message from my brother Mike saying "Dad passed away last night. Come home!"........................ ........... The squadron typed up emergency leave papers with 15 day leave. I was on my way in LC-6 headed for Suffolk County near Riverhead, N.Y. . Squadron was very helpful. We landed at Long Island about 3 PM on June 15th. Crew actually was headed to Brunswick Maine for mining exercizes. Crew included Turner, Doc Pride, Ned Knepper, Lt. Carden, Lt, Lillianthal, Shurtz and Till. After landing, thanked crew and hitchhiked home (3 rides) and arrived home in Whitestone. NY at 6:30 pm.
By the way, I had written on June 14, 1960, we had flown out from Argentia to aid an ice breaker to clear water.
Thanks for sharing and hope to hear back from you soon.
Ralph Papa (email@example.com)
Date: 4/29/2010 8:02:19 AM
Subject: Listing of VP8 Officers 1955-1957 from John W Jamison
The following list of VP8 Officers (1955-57) was received by Ralph Papa from Robert L. Hogg on 4-29-2010:
A BIT OF HISTORY: "...Below is a list of officers who served with me in VP-8 1955-57, along with their rank at the time.
Some names may be missing. I would appreciate any additions or corrections, and I would enjoy hearing from anyone who served with me then. I have a few current mailing addresses and would like to have more.
Asterisks indicate those men who are believed to be deceased..." Contributed by JAMISON, John W. firstname.lastname@example.org [16APR2001]
Bergstrom, Kenneth I., ENS Biggs, R. W., W-1 Bogosian*, A. E. (Ed), LCDR Bowers, Robert W. (Bob), LTJG Boyer, WIlliam E., LTJG Brescia, Louis, LTJG Brogden, William H. (Hoyt), LTJG Brown, J. R., ENS, (female admin officer) Burnett , Louis R., CDR Cote, Paul E., LTJG Dassler, Edward M., LT DeMontebello, G., ENS DiCarlo, Vincent A., LTJG DiNatale, A. F. (Skip), ENS Dobbs, Al, LTJG Doyle*, Thurlow G. ("T"), CDR Fiene, Donald F. (Don), LTJG Gardemal, Robert G., LCDR Gaskin, Richard G., LT Hart, Robert L., LTJG Hebert, E. P., LT Hogg, R. L., ENS Holmbeck, Glenn E., ENS Huber, Robert L. (Bob), LCDR Huffman, Charles (Charlie), LT Hughes, Ronald E., LTJG Jamison, John W., LTJG Josephson, J. V. (Joe), LT Keating, John A., LCDR Kinch, R. G., ENS Kroszner*, Rudolf J. (Rudy), LTJG Kucyk, Peter M., LTJG Larson*, Conrad S. (Connie), LCDR Law, Frederick H., LTJG Levenson, Lee, LTJG Lynch, Thomas, LTJG McCalla, John, LT McDowell, Curtis G., LTJG McFawn, Lawrence (Larry), LCDR McGinnis, B. J., LT Meleski, D. R., ENS Mitchell, D. F., LTJG Moriarty, Jack O., LTJG Moss, Elmo L, (Len), CDR Newsom, Hugh M., ENS O'Brien, Jr., Thomas L. (Tom), LTJG Pate, J. A. (Jack), LCDR Randall, H. W., LTJG Rapp, Barney, LCDR Resnick, J. H., ENS Reyback, James M. (Jim), LT Richards, D. B., ENS Rodgers, Charles (Chuck), LT Rusch*, John H., LTJG Rushing, Les, LTJG Schuller, Gordon J. (Dutch), LTJG Sesow, Anthony. D. (Tony), LTJG Sharer, Keith W., LT Skomsky, Louis J. (Lou), LTJG Smith, A. J. (Al), LT Stromeyer, A. J., ENS Thomas, William E. (Bill), CDR Tobin, L. A., ENS Townsley, J. W., LTJG Watt, William M., ENS (*) thought to be deceased