1966- after 3 months at Long Beach Yard to have the SPS-39 radar remounted
after being taken off by crane at Pearl as a result of damage from the blast
test Sailor Hat, Towers was part of a SEATO exercise off the coast of
Mexico. This was a live warhead shot for us. Designation to the target drones
was right on and we had a solid track. Both birds were launched a few
seconds apart. After waiting for 30 to 45 seconds no missiles showed up on
the missile radars, usually a small doppler pulse going in to the target.
The illuminating radars were immediately turned off and we all shrugged our
shoulders. Later we found out that the missile launcher was left in Manual
and did not launch in the direction of the drones. Instead it was said that
the missiles flew over the reviewing ships and went down range, where, no
one knows. I think they got a show anyway.
Also related to Vietnam in 1965 Frank writes:
It was only the beginning but we were very busy
going between the carriers , SAR and Market Time. Accounts like the Captain
collecting fishing net glass balls, jets buzzing mast top of those spy
trawlers, off Nah Trang at night coming so close to the shore that the
signalmen were using their lights for search lights into the woods. And
before the ship put into Subic after wards it moored in the bay and the
boatswain's painted the sides before we could tie up at the pier because we
were a sight after months at sea.