problemos: email : Doc Riojas : docrio45 [at] gmail DOT com
Harry Butler UDT Frogman East Coast
Harry Butler and Teamates Med. Cruse was summer 1972 aboard LSD 29 Plymouth Rock
1. Harry Butler
2. Chuck Steffy (RIP)
3. Hemphill - Support Engineman
5. ? Sweeny
6. Fred Sanderson
7. Carl (Mule Skinner) Hubbman
8. Jim O'Neil Sam (Tapir) Bailey
9. Norm Carley
10. Pierre Ponson
11. Jack Gantley (RIP)
12. Bill McNally
13. Paul (PT Shorts) Schwartz
14. Bob Putnam
15. Larry Geesey
16. 'Wild Man' Jo Jo Hansen
17. Brand Heddon Pic was probably taken by John Kirby
Harry Butler UDT E.C. rappelling
From: flight014 13Sep2016
To: Dr. Frank Butler USN
Frank, Doc Rio
was the King of the 'Short Arm' inspection. Word was out on ST2 that the 'Doc' rather enjoyed Short Arm Inspections + Finger Waves. You knew that the Doc was going to let you have it when he offered you a shot of FSN Brandy when you came into the room. Another tip was when you dropped your skivvies the Doc would always get a smile on his face. Tibe P.S. I think the Doc went to Medical School after retirement so that he could charge for 'Finger Waves'!!!
USS Plymouth Rock LSD 29
Roosey Roads, Puerto Rico the UDT Barracks
Bill McNally in Nafplione, Greece
Dicky Whitaker, Harry Butler, and Janet Langley
Charles "Chaz" M. Heron R.I.P.
1956 - 2008
James "Ace" Lyons
Larry Bailey with WWII Vet in center
Denny Johnson 50th Class Reunion
Free Fire Zone Book tells the story of Vietnam where Robert "Eagle" Gallagher was awarded the Navy Cross Rudy & Marge Bosech
Hook's wife and Hook Tuure and I forgot his name
Larry Bailey standing Erasmo "Doc" Riojas and Lourdes "LouLu" Tolentino his C.O.
Joe Mc Carthy waco Fraser
Doc Homer Marshall and wife Clara
Jack Strandquis DV
Jason Gozalez Jim Rowland John Jauzems and Joseph Smith
Lowell Gosser the origional Artist of that SEAL Loggo
Doc Riojas at the Hong Lan Money Exchange the place where I send money to Minh every month.
Slater Bblackiston Daughter
Swede Thornblom and Officer
Terry Sullivan ST-2 'Nam Moki Martin
David M. Heflick R.I. P.
1950 - 2016
Dave M. Heflick R.I.P.
Indians protest Navy building site they say is sacred burial ground
By Debbi Baker Aug. 31, 2016
From: Richard Marcinko 31Aug2016
To: Doc Riojas
Willima "Fat Rat" Sutherland ST-2 and Richard "Demo Dick" Marcinko explaining what this picture could be?
I went through class #26 Little Creek. 1960.
Fat Rat was in the "only " team at the time UDT 21.
He worked in cartography/ intel / charts and operations as departments. His graphic / cartoon skills are a legend. The teams had barely started jumping.
Individuals were sent to Ft. Benning GA. (not platoons etc.). Because of his background of expertise and the initial jumping experience I would say that it was another airplane we were trying to document could drop us to a quick recon for the amphibious forces and/or a "special" racer was needed and they need a "quick look" by someone that could present the experience graphically for "special" needs. Just guess work based on time and personalities.
Fat Rat was not a "Sky King" from airops that had just started as a department.
Glen Collins R.I.P. 1965 - 2016
to: Doc Riojas and Bcc to SEAL email list
Subj: Roger Cook eamil about the UDT SEAL Museum statue at entrance of Bldg.
About the statue on the strand. I am glad it is being done.. I was president of the UDT-SEAL museum shortly after it opened back in the mid eighties. The museum had a paper mannequin of a frogman displayed in the shallow pond at the entrance to the museum on the south side. Back in those days the museum grounds was wide open to the public. We always had problems with people destroying our naked warrior statue.
At the time I was employed by a company only a few miles away. The president of our company was J Seward Johnson of Johnson&Johnson Corp. Seward had a son J Seward Johnson Jr. who had a sculpting studio in Princeton N.J. I contacted Mr. Johnson for a bid on a bronze statue to replace our paper version,knowing it would hold up much better. I took a photo of of Steve Nelson, whom I had just hired. Steve had just left the Navy and SEAL team1.
Steve wore the gear from my war bag accept I used fins and facemask from WW2 to give the statue a broader appeal. The sculpting studio wanted to add additional features to the statue to make it more appealing according to them. I said no several times that the statue had to be exactly like the photo.I traveled to Princeton twice during construction to ensure the statue was exactly like the photo. While the statue was being made the county of Ft. Peirce, whom we were controlled by at the time decided to install a wire fence around the property.
The rubber mold of the original statue is what is being used to reproduce the new naked warrior statues. This will be the third statue of the original naked warrior. The original statue was produced for , 000, far less than the newer models! Statue #2 is in Hawaii. We contacted several studios that produce bronze items, but Mr. Johnson's bid was the lowest. One of the studios was located only a short distance from the museum.
How DEA agents
helped bring down the 'King of Cocaine' Pablo Escobar
“We stretched the rules a bit,” Leveron remembered. “The SEALs had to stay in safe areas, so we declared
any area behind us on a mission to be a safe area.” Davis and his fellow SEALs started going out on missions
with the Bolivians and the DEA, and if questioned where they had been, would make up excuses, such as
they were downtown looking for hookers. stash his web gear under the seats of the helicopter to
avoid the prying gaze of a US Special Forces warrant officer in their area. The man was hated by his own
men who also wanted to go out on missions. Davis threatened to kill the Greet Beret if he ever dropped dime
to MilGroup about his extracurricular activities
Cindy and Frank Sparks (hollywood SCUBA stunt man in movie JAWS)
Frank Sparks Navy SEAL
JoAnn Atkinson E. "Doc" Riojas and Sol Atkinson in Metlakatla AK
Carl Douglas "Pete" O'Dell
R.I.P. 1929 - 2016
Carl Douglas "Pete" O'Dell, 89, 22 February 2016
early graduate of Training in Fort Pierce, Florida
and Maui, Hawaii, and served with
Underwater Demolition Team TWENTY-TWO during WWII.
R.I.P. 1932 - 2016
Don C. Marler has edited since the late 2013. It denotes his
love of books and the study of mankind's diversifies. I own a complete MARLER library of books he has written and published. I am currently investigating a way for him to be awarded a PHD for his works In the preservation of rural history from the LSU school of social studies from which he already has a Masters Degree.
email: FoxtrotTangoCharlie: divejob [at] aol DOT com: "My cousin was a good man. "
The Nick Null Memorial Foundation was started by Nick’s Mother Tracy, to honor and celebrate the life of Fallen Soldier Nicholas Heath Null. Chief Null is our hometown hero! Nick was born on March 30, 1981 in Parkersburg, West Virginia. He later graduated from Parkersburg South High School with the class of 1999. Nick Leaves Behind his widow and his three beautiful young boys.
DEVGRU Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician (EWS/SW/aw/FPJ) CPO Nicholas H. Null was a highly decorated combat veteran with numerous awards including Two Bronze Star Medals with Valor and Exceptional Heroism, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Service Commendation Medal with Valor, Purple Heart Medal, Two Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medals with Valor, Two Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medals, Two Iraqi Campaign Medals, Two Afghanistan Campaign Medals, Global War on Terrorism (Service) Medal, Global War on Terrorism (Expeditionary) Medal, Combat Action Ribbon (Operation Iraqi Freedom), Combat Action Ribbon (Operation Enduring Freedom), National Defense Service Medal, Presidential Unit Commendation, and numerous other personal and unit decorations.
Burley J. Penninger
R.I.P. 1922 - 2016
graduate of Training in Fort Pierce, Florida, and served with Underwater
Demolition Teams SEVEN and THIRTY during WWII.
West Coast SEAL Reunion 2015
David Michael Collins 1969- 2014 R.I.P.
David Michael Collins, 45, of Virgina Beach, Va., died March 12, 2014.
Born in Williamsport, Dave graduated from Lock Haven High School.
He served for 25 years in the Navy and was a SEAL. Article Photos
During his career, he served in the first Gulf War, the Iraq War and Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.
He received many commendations during his distinguished career, including the Bronze Star and a Letter of Recognition from Iraqi Interim Prime Minister Ayad Allawi.
After retiring from the Navy, he worked for Blackbird Technologies.
Dave was known by his friends and family as a kind soul who befriended everyone he met. He made everyone feel special and took deliberate care to look after those who were less fortunate in a myriad of ways.
He was a fiercely patriotic man and believed it was his duty to protect the freedoms we all enjoy.
A deeply spiritual and religious man, he was honored to serve his church, Star of the Sea. Dave was an amazing father and husband and taught his children the most important lessons in life - humility, kindness, loyalty and love. In addition to that love for his wife and children, he had a deep and abiding love for his brothers in the SEAL teams and forever had a missing piece in his heart for his fallen teammates.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Children of David Collins Memorial Fund, c/o Navy Federal Credit Union, 1952 Laskin Road, Virginia Beach, Va. 23454.
David Michael Collins 1969- 2014 R.I.P.
From: Martin Mapes mailto: [email protected]
to:Martin's SEAL Email list
Subject: Submarine Lockouts in the 1961-62
We did this this lockout while submerged and under way in 1961 or '62. It didn't go well because the sub had passed the drop off point before everyone got out. The skipper decided to make a circle and give it another shot. The problem was men were still coming out of the lockout chambers while he was making this maneuver. There were five men in the aft chamber and only two had their heads above water so we didn't get the word to stop lockuts. Being the youngest, I was the bottom one in an L-shaped chamber. There was a forward chamber also but I can't remimber how many men it held.That sub scattered men all over the ocean off San Clemente Island. The props almost got me on that one.
As far as special bunks-we had to "hot rack it". You used a boat sailor's rack until he came off a four hour watch and then you had to give it up and go look for another empty one. The racks were spaced so close together verically that you could not roll over in the rack. You had to slide out and hang from the overhead, make your flip and slide back in. Todays sailors would think that we were just making up these stories.
SEALs in Vietnam Question
From: Ruth Mc Sween
To: Doc RIojas
Date: Nov 11, 2013
Subject: UDT SEAL Assn inquiry forwarded to you
Kirsten Arnold's enquiry? Please read her email to the Museum.
Thank you, Ruth
Sent: Sunday, November 10, 2013 7:05 PM
To: [email protected]
Subj: SEALs in Vietnam QuestionDear Master Chief Kaiser,
As an executive director of the National Navy SEAL Museum, I realize you are extremely busy. However, I hope you are willing to help me with a question.
A little about me; I earned an MA in Naval Warfare from the American Military University. I was the manager of the Oral History program for the Naval Historical Foundation in DC for six years and contracted with them for eight years before moving to DC. I also contract with the Marine Corps History Division working with their oral history program and still contract with them on a case by case basis. Last year, I moved back to my home state of Wyoming where I work at the local museum as a curator and as a oral historian for a local program. I am also a writer of romance fiction.
In my current fiction project, the hero is a Vietnam era SEAL. I want the SEAL in my story to be as authentic and true to the Teams as possible. Part takes place in country and the second half in the States adjusting to life after a career-ending injury. Below are the resources I have used to study the Teams during Vietnam and to get an idea, as much as anyone can without serving with the SEALs, about how these men operated and a bit about their downtime, as well.
If you could point me in the direction of any other sources that would prove valuable to understanding these first SEALs, I would greatly appreciate it.
Thank you so much for your time and attention. I look forward to hearing from you.
Resources used to date:
Bosiljevac, T.L. SEALs: UDT/SEAL Operations in Vietnam. New York: Ivy Press,
Cummings, Dennis J. The Men Behind the Trident: SEAL Team One in Vietnam. New
York: Bantam Books, 1997.
Dockery, Kevin. Navy SEALs: A History of the Early Years. New York: Berkley Books,
2001____________. Navy SEALs: A History Part II, The Vietnam Years. New York: Berkley
____________. SEALs in Action. New York: Avon Books, 1991.
Fawcett, Bill. ed. Hunters and Shooters: An Oral History of the U.S. Navy SEALs in
Vietnam. New York: Avon Books, 1995.
___________ and Kevin Dockery.eds. The Teams: An Oral History of the U.S. Navy
SEALs. New York: Avon Books, 1998.
Marolda, Edward. The U.S. Navy in the Vietnam War. Potomac Books, 2003.
Sasser, Charles W. Encyclopedia of the Navy SEALs. New York: Facts on File, Inc.
SEAL Teams in Naval Special Warfare. Department of the Navy, Office of the Chief of
Naval Operations. Washington, D.C., 1963.
Vietnamese Commandos. Hearing before the Select Committee on Intelligence of the
United States Senate, One Hundred Fourth Congress, Second Session on Vietnamese
Commandos, Wednesday, June 19, 1996. Washington: U.S. Government Printing
Walsh, Lt. Cmdr. Michael J USN (Ret.). SEAL! From Vietnam’s Phoenix Program to
Central America’s Drug Wars: Twenty-Six Years with a Special Operations Warrior.
New York: Pocket Books, 1994.
Watson, Chief James U.S. Navy (Ret.) and Kevin Dockery. Point Man. New York: Avon
Young, Darryl. The Element of Surprise: Navy SEALs in Vietnam. New York: Ivy Books,
I would also like to extend my condolences in the passing of Chief Watson. Unfortunately, I never had the opportunity to meet the Chief, but through his books and stories I've heard, I sincerely wish I could have.
from: Erasmo "Doc" Riojas
Date: 11 Nov 2013
Who is Kirsten Arnold?
NOTE: beware. Book by Orr Kelly has false information !
NEVER FIGHT FAIR book by Kelly ORR. Doc Riojas wrote the publisher and their response was that the book will not be published anymore.
Robert Clark, then HM1 stole Erasmo Riojas thunder.
Every thing he said he did is a a fabrication.
Doc Riojas was THE ONE THAT rescued Bob Christopher and John Brewton and you need to ready the story on the book .
The truth was later written in another book describing this same patrol; SEAL WARRIOR,
by Tom Keith who was also acknowledged by Doc Clark to have been there.
tom was up front like #3 in that patrol. I was #5. Doc Clark was rear security in a column of about 14 SEALs walking in knee deep water in the jungle of the Rung Sat Special Zone Vietnam. Any questions, i will be glad to answer and if you need wit5nesses besides TOM KEITH,
there are several SEALs that were on that patrol still alive.
From : Ruth McSween / Rick
To : Doc Rio
Doc, I don't know Kristen Arnold. I was contacted by her asking if I could help her with a fictional book project, she's working on. It deals with a Vietnam era SEAL. Her email about herself and the project is below, if you wish to contact her, her email is kanavyhist <>.
SEAL WaRRIOR by Tom Keith
Richard "Demo Dick" "Rogue Warrior" Marcinko The Pirelli closed circuit SCUBA and the other Diver with Open Circuit SCUBA
Mark D. Kennedy
Jeffrey Keith Reynolds R.I.P.
Jeffrey K. Reynolds
JOSEPH "RED" COYLE
R.I.P. 1934 - 2014
Joseph "Red" Coyle and JoAnn RIP
The Arlington National Cemetery burial date for Navy SEAL James "Patches" Watson is Friday April 11th. You must be at the Admin building by 1:15 for the 2PM service. Please feel free to share this information.
Chief Watson is an original plank owner of SEAL Team Two and, as one of the original “men with green faces,” served three tours in Vietnam. For his valor, he earned sixteen combat decorations, four of which are Bronze Stars, all with Combat “V”. His twenty year Navy... career included twenty-five training schools, eleven years on the SEAL teams, including serving as a CIA-sponsored adviser to the Provincial Reconnaissance Unit (PRU) Program in South Vietnam. These units investigated and attacked covert communist operations in South Vietnam. He also served with the Vietnamese LDNN (Lien Doi Nguoi Nhai, Vietnamese SEAL counterparts trained by the U.S. in eleven missions into Cambodia.
I am going to say something, and I figure by the time I am done you will drop me off your list like a hot rock. Of all the folk that travelled to see Chief off, only two were in uniform. an SOC and CDR, both from the Pentagon, both told to be there, both didn't want to be there and had no idea who Chief was.
When the flag was folded it was not a SEAL that presented it to his family, it was the Chaplin. The Chaplin told the crowd that the chief ashes will be left on the stand for a few minutes so that those that wish may leave a parting gift or token. After about 10 minutes the CDR walked up to the stand and just shook his head.
I came up behind him and asked if it is ok, and set my River War Pin on the stand. That was the only anything left with him. Was I wrong? The one thing that several of the folk there talked about, was not who was there, but who was not there.
I am going to say something, and I figure by the time I am done you will drop me off your list like a hot rock.
Of all the folk that travelled to see Chief off, only two were in uniform. an SOC and CDR, both from the Pentagon, When the flag was folded it was not a SEAL that presented it to his family, it was the Chaplin. The Chaplin told the crowd that the chief ashes will be left on the stand for a few minutes so that those that wish may leave a parting gift or token. After about 10 minutes the CDR walked up to the stand. I came up behind him and asked if it is ok, and set my River War Pin on the stand. That was the only anything left with him. The one thing that several of the folk there talked about, was not who was there, but who was not there.
Webmaster's Note: The majority of the Frogmen that worked with "Jimbo" are either dead, or crippled, or on fixed income. I did not go because I am to old to make the trip from Texas to D.C. without getting there in a world of hurt. My traveling companion works full time.
Arlington National Cemetery burial for James "Patches" Watson, was Friday April 11th
Weather was perfect, Ceremony: dignified and solemn, attendance was adequate.
Family had a copy of “Point Man” signed by attendees.
Bob Gallagher was in attendance. It was great to see him up and about.
His locomotion is a bit unsteady however he remains feisty.
TOM ? find his picture !
Tom graduated UDTR Training with Class 16 on 16 May 1956 at Little Creek and served with UDT-21
Fellow Association Member Bill Baker provided the following information: Born 29 Oct. 1936
o Entered the Navy 1956
o Graduated from Little Creek, Class 16
o Served in UDT 21
o Left the Navy in 1960 and entered the active Navy reserve
o Graduated from University of Houston
o Continued in active reserve, attaining the rank of Commander
o Was a resident of Spicewood, Texas
o He Leaves his Wife Claire, his brother Don, his sons, John and Mathew, and a daughter Anne.
Another son, Luke, preceded him in death.
Gary Jackson of "Blackwater" Adm. Mc Raven
Christopher Beck, SEAL retired, changed his sex to female.
A former Navy SEAL who identified herself as transgender after 20 years serving on the elite team is fighting claims that she's became a tool in Pentagon efforts to recruit transgender people.
Kristen Beck was called Chris while she served in the Navy SEAL squad which gained international recognition for the killing of Osama bin Laden.
A recent Washington Times story called her a 'poster girl' for recruiting transgenders, noting that she tweeted 'Transgender service in the armed forces, yes it will happen soon.'
Chamkani and Beck
Jun 25, 2015
to: Doc Riojas
From: gus <gustaylor AT aol DOT com
Just wanted to tell you that I was with Chris Beck at Firebase Chamkani in Eastern Afghanistan for about 2 months in the spring of 2010. None of us had a clue as to Chris’ internal conflicts.
The only unusual thing I noticed was that he was beyond brave. One night, some of our Afghan Local Police (ALP) were caught in an ambush, with over 40 Taliban firing on them. Chris Beck rallied up one Gun Truck with a 7.62mm Minigun and some SF guys and drove out to rescue the ALP. He did that. We called in some fast-movers and between the jets and the mini-gun, Chris and the SF guys got all the ALP out alive.
I found out later from his family that Chris has had this girl-thing issue all his life, since he was little. Anyway, here is a photo of Chris and me as I remember him. Hope you would all reflect a bit on this, as I have.
Webmaster's NOTE: Once a SEAL, always a SEAL. Beck wants to be a girl; none of my business.
Brett Lynch Curtis Campbell Jim Bracken GulfCoast SEAL
Doc Riojas, Bob Holmes, Jim Bracken
T.R. Davis and Fred Toothman
Hunter Hill SEALs
Marcus Luttrell & Muhammed ?
Marvin L. Malfeo
Jonesey, Gerry Flowers, Erasmo Riojas, the doggie "Lilly" and D. Rio Vasquez
Richard RICK Hetzell 1974
Richard RICK Hetzell Marlin Perkins
Stubblefield Woods and Doherty
Ross Perot and Eric Burris 2013 @ UDT SEAL Museum
Eric Burris and Tom Norris 2013
Ross Perot at Museum with Active duty SEALs
Jon Burrow and Eric Burris
Eric Burris Larry Lask Mike Ryan
Erioc Burris, son: Josh Burris, Cindy Dietz-Marsh and Mike Ryan
Richard "Doc" "Leg" Martin 1935-2014 is a Plank Owner of SEAL Team TWO, Combat Veteran of the Vietnam war, He is a 1st Class Diver (Med.DV Tech), and a Special Operations Tech (SEAL) and U.S. Navy Retired; May he Rest in Peace
Roy M. Maddocks Jr.
Len Conti, Class 27 Little Creek
email 10 Oct 2009
Somewhere in your voluminous photo album there is a shot of the UDT
Training cadre dated Puerto Rico, 1966.
Tyree, Blais, Newell, Hammond and others are listed. Also is one
person shown as LT ? (unknown person).
For your info, this is LT Woodaman, Class 27 EC, and USNA graduate.
Don't remember his first name.
Also, noticed several photos of John Francis Rabbitt. Could not find his bio. Where is he now? Is he still with us? He was in my platoon
(1st platoon UDT 21) for a Med Cruise and a Carribean cruise. First
class aviation tech then. Glad to see he made Chief.
Doc Riojas NOTE: J.F.Rabbitt bio is on the Log. Go to these LINKs of my many other FREE web sites. JFR may be in there. You may be in there?
PS: here it is, i found it: If you would have gone to my page SEALSWINLOSE the ARCHIEVES you would have run across that link.
Lt. to Rt: standing: Tyree, Sullivan, Tom Blais, Chuck Newell, LT Woodaman, Doc Painter. Sitting: Art Hammond, Jim Cook, Herb Clements, Gene Fraley
We have a ass hole in our DAV post getting Compensation for PTSD-- he was a seaman aboard a ship in the far east and a Russian plane was seen flying within eyesight of his ship. He says he still has bad dreams because of the incident.
They are considering giving the Purple Heart for PTSD which will open up another can of worms, it will take funds from other areas where they are really needed- and will degrade the Purple Heart to a so what status
If everyone were honest and above board in their actions and thoughts that would be one thing but too many people lie through their ass attempting to gain compensation for something that never happened which makes it even more difficult for men with real injuries to obtain what is justly due them.
Guys with real PTSD get compensation and help anyway Mostly Army guys Why do some think they should have the Purple Heart?
Back when UDT training was what it was and Tom Blais and Chuck Newell were training instructors. Every man they trained could claim PTS after training but never would ever do it.
I am telling you for real if TB or CN ever looked into your face and saw fear caused by the training you would wish you were dead because they would Give you some personal instruction. If you got through that the PTSD would have never mattered and you would never ever get it because you had already had it and never wanted any of it again.
The thing about their personal instruction is that those who got it behind them and stuck it out could always be relied on to never quit or be effected by tough times-- When Blais would get pissed and his face turned red and his eyes dilated and his teeth clenched then he would smile. You knew you were in for something you never dreamed of happening to your little self.
There was one guy in my class the got crossed up with TB someway and when he realized it he ran away, went over the hill, hauled ass. and we never saw him again--and at the time I couldn't blame him-- we all knew he was going to be dead meat and if he came through it he would always be demented.
We had a another guy in my class who had four years service and was a seaman (E3 if you don't remember). this guy had been stationed on Naval Air bases and had always worked in the gym and weight room, when he went aboard a carrier he took care of the weight room and ran around the flight deck. To look at him you would think he was Charles Atlas.
This guy got crossed up with CN and for a couple of day survived but one day Newell walked up to him and told him he was going to run him to death--This guy was no push over either and the next run we were on he knew what was coming up and faked a pass out, We had just had some class on physiology and the word medulla oblongota (medulla)was mentioned, anyway when they brought him around he told them his medulla oblongota was swollen up and he couldn't breathe.
Blais and Newell and Wadell went high order then made some of the guys drag him out into the surf and then made the whole class run over him--They said if anyone that didn't get a Boon Doctor on his ass they would wish they had, and they meant it too!
We never saw this guy again. The Ambulance came and hauled him away then they ran us down the beach and up down ever sand dune until there were guys strung out for miles-- then the Jeep got between the pack and the stragglers and that night the stragglers were kept up squat jumping until muster the next morning.
Once you got in deep like that it made every day harder and harder until there was nothing left, you could only hope for a week end so you could recover well enough to make it through the next week. Just sharing memories---
Webmaster's NOTE: He is one of my best friends. Fred was WIA in 'nam. He was shot through the femur of one of his legs and damn near lost it. He was medically discharged. He rehabilitated himself while a civilian, and although he had one leg shorter than the other one attempted to rejoin the Navy and was declined. The U.S.Army accepted him and he retired as a Major. He was the foremost knowlegable weapons officer in the USA and is now a Gunsmith in Iowa.
To: Doc Riojas
Date: 24 Dec 2013
Subj: Tom Blais
Doc, I talked to Tom Blais, Jim Cook, and Chuck Newell yesterday. We had good conversations and laughed about old times with the teams and UDT/R. They were instructors when I went through training and they were great instructors.
They all said "Quit, you stinkin trainee". But I didn't think they really meant it; so I kept my helmet on and stayed away from that dreaded bell.
I really enjoyed your action packed Christmas letter. I will turn 74 on 29 Dec, Rudy's birthday is 20 Jan 1928 (he will be 86 but looks 12 years younger), and yours is 14 Aug 1931 (as if you didn't know; and you look 15 years younger).
Take care and Happy New Year to you and your special family.
In Christ my brother,
Lt. to Rt: standing: Tyree, Sullivan, Tom Blais, Chuck Newell, LT Woodaman, Doc Painter. Sitting: Art Hammond, Jim Cook, Herb Clements, Gene Fraley
Len Conti, Class 27 Little Creek
To: Doc Riojas
SUbj: John Wayne in Puerto Rico
I’m sending you one of my favorite navy memories. If you’ve already seen this story (with attachment), I’ve added to it.
HAPPY NEW YEAR,
Left to Right: The man bending over with his back to us and the other man with sunglasses were with John Wayne, next is Chester Coggeshall, PO1 Bob Auger, Ens Bill Langley (standing on a chair), Doc Meyers (hat), John "The Duke" Wayne, Fud Miller, Chief Gene Gayman, an Army Capt, PO3 Marshall, SN Stein, Jim Zultewicz, an Army Lt, Grossmouth (now a Navy surgeon), and Dwight Plumlee. Tom Winter was also with the UDT survey team but was not in the picture. This picture was taken in 1972 at a beach in Rio Hato, Panama. It was taken about two hours after the completion of a beach survey conducted jointly by UDT-21 2nd Platoon and a Panamanian frogman detachment.
UDT-21 2nd Platoon and a Panamanian swimmer team of about 6 – 8 men were tasked to conduct a shallow water survey of a beach near President Omar Torrijos’ villa at Rio Hato, Panama. The president’s villa and the barracks the UDT detachment stayed in were both located near the beach. The night before the survey, President Omar Torrijos invited the Panamanian officer, Chief Gene Gayman, Ensign Bill Langley, and an Army officer to his villa for a brief visit. President Torrijos, while lying comfortably in a hammock in a screened-in porch, welcomed them to Panama, invited them to have tea, and thanked them for coming to Rio Hato to conduct the beach survey. President Torrijos told them that John Wayne was scheduled to visit with him the next day. We had no idea that the president would tell John Wayne about us, what we were doing, and where we were.
The president’s villa was fairly well guarded. An armed guard was stationed on each side of his hammock and several more were strategically located around the outside of the villa. No doubt there were more armed guards on alert nearby. While drinking tea with the president as he relaxed in his hammock, one Panamanian citizen at a time would come in from a line that had formed outside to express their problems or concerns. After listening to them, he would decide quickly and tell his aid what to do. They would leave after thanking him and the next person would come in. The president appeared to be very concerned and accessible to the Panamanian people in the area.
The next morning SN Stien conducted reveille by riding into the barracks on the back of a 5 foot tall elephant trumpeting loudly, which was an unusual beginning to a very special day. The survey went smoothly with the exception that sharks were spotted about halfway through the survey. The sighting of sharks made everyone swim a little faster so the survey finished quickly and the Panamanian frogmen left the area immediately after all soundings were turned in to the cartographer. During the survey a small plane flew over and someone commented, "There goes John Wayne". President Torrijos must have told John Wayne who we were and what we were doing because as we were cleaning our gear, a large car pulls up and out steps John Wayne. He was a big man (6'5") and he was extremely gracious, nice, and friendly toward everyone. He told us that he admired and respected the UDT/SEAL community and the U S military. He had a few beers, smoked a big cigar and socialized with us in John Wayne style for at least an hour.
Remembering the frogman tradition of throwing someone in the water for almost anything, I think it was Stein that said, “Let’s throw him in the water”, to which John Wayne replied, “I’ll bury you boy”. We all laughed and a short time later John Wayne’s staff knew that it was time to leave and move on to take the airplane to their next destination. For that brief hour we all felt like we were on a movie set with "The Duke / Big John”. I wrote to John and asked him to autograph a picture for the UDT-21 hallway. I also sent him a “Freddie the Frog” cigarette lighter. He returned several autographed pictures with a handwritten letter and a Zippo lighter inscribed on one side “M V Wild Goose” and on the other side “Stolen From John Wayne”. The Wild Goose was the name of his private yacht, a converted WWII U S Navy mine sweeper. He was a good man and a generous man. It was an honor to meet him and to know him, if only for a brief time.
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From: [email protected]
To: Email List
Subj: Tom Blais BUD/S insturctor
Just a short 7 months to our big 50th Reunion at Little Creek, VA!! It was so sad to hear of the passing of Instructor Bernie Waddell last fall, and other fallen include Instructors Fraley, Hammond, Clemens (my best buddy in SEAL Team 2),Bakkalar (sp?), and I'm sure I've missed a few.
Anyway, I've always felt that Instructor Tom Blais represented the "glue" that held our class together. He sure was the ONE who made sure that I was never allowed to turn in that "Red Helmet"!!
Also, as most of you know, Tom lost his dear son, Rock, in a jump that went terribly bad over Raymond James Stadium in Fla. I had the honor of spending an hour with Rock about a year before his death. I had just completed a triathlon in VA. and dropped into my old alma mater - SEAL Team 2, unannounced! Rock made a point of making me feel most welcome - he was slated to become SEAL 2 next XO when he made LCDR.
All this said, I was just talking to Doc RIO tonight about Tom. Tom is in a Nursing Home in Va. Beach. Master Chief Thomas Blais First Colonial Inn
845 First Colonial Road Virginia Beach, VA 23451
Tom's private Phone: (757) Upon your request via email to Me, Frank CLeary.
Suzie & I plan to send an Edible Arrangement and call on Christmas Day. How about we all try to give Tom a call on Christmas Day to say Hi and we're ready to drop for 50 upon his command and also provide transportation for him at our reunion.
Best Wishes and Merry Christmas to All!
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Date: On Sun, Dec 22, 2013
From: [email protected]>
To: SEAL Email List
Anybody know Tom's own class # ?
you mean Class Numbers? plural?
I do not know the numbers of his classes: TWO !
Michael Oyer R.I.P.
CEO, Owner at Frog Hollow FarmUS Navy SEAL Graduate Geneva high
Michael Oyer, graduate of BUD/S Class 106, and served in both East Coast and West Coast Teams passed away Sunday night, 05 August 2012 after a hard fought battle with ALS.
Mike began showing symptoms of ALS in 2006, and was officially diagnosed with the disease in 2007. News Channel 3 has been following Mike Oyer and his family's efforts to raise money for ALS research for several years.
ALS, or Lou Gehrig's disease, attacks motor neurons and slowly chips away at one's ability to speak, walk, talk and breath. There is no known cause or cure.
Chris Cassidy Lieutenant Commander Chris Cassidy was born on January 4, 1970 in Salem, Massachusetts, but considers York, Maine, his hometown. He is married and a father of three children.
Lieutenant Commander Cassidy received a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1993 and a Master’s degree in Ocean engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2000.
He was the honor graduate of Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL Class 192 and spent ten years with the SEAL Teams, serving as the Executive Officer and Operations Officer of Special Boat Unit TWENTY in Norfolk, VA; a Platoon Commander in SEAL Team THREE in Coronado, CA; and a Platoon Commander in SEAL Delivery Vehicle Team TWO in Norfolk, VA. Lieutenant Commander Cassidy’s dedicated service earned him two Bronze Stars for leading a nine-day operation at the Zharwar Kili cave complex in Afghanistan – a national priority objective.
Besides making four, six-month deployments to Afghanistan and two to the Mediterranean, Cassidy also volunteered for and completed a week-long, 180-mile charity kayak paddle from Norfolk, VA to Washington, D.C. to raise money and awareness for the Special Operations Warrior Foundation.
In May 2004, Cassidy was selected for the space program by NASA. In February 2006 he completed Astronaut Candidate Training, consisting of scientific and technical briefings, intensive instruction in Shuttle and International Space Station systems, physiological training, T-38 flight training, and water and wilderness survival training. Completion of this initial training qualifies him for various technical assignments within the Astronaut Office and future flight assignment as a mission specialist.
On June 13th, 2009, Cassidy will be one of seven astronauts launched to the International Space Station on Space Shuttle ENDEAVOR (STS-127). This is the 29th mission to the space station, the 10th anniversary of the station and ENDEAVOR’s 22nd flight into space. More...
R. William Vogel
It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of R. William Vogel, 96, on 01 May 2013 in Cincinnati, OH. Bill was an early graduate of NCD Training at Fort Pierce, Florida and served with NCDU-110 and Underwater Demolition Team SEVEN during WWII. click on the below link for more information:, on 01 May 2013 in Cincinnati, OH. Bill was an early graduate of NCD Training at Fort Pierce, Florida and served with NCDU-110 and Underwater Demolition Team SEVEN during WWII. click on the below link for more information:
R. William Vogel
Campton, Ronald M.
Ronald M. Campton, 80, of Marshall, IL, and former resident of Scottsdale, AZ passed away May 2, 2013 at his home. He was born Dec. 6, 1932 at Washington, IN, the son of Roberta Tabler and Ernest Campton. After high school he joined the Navy, served with Underwater Demolition Team ONE, and was a Korean War veteran. On Oct. 1, 1955
GulfCoast SEALs Christmas Party in Houston TX 4 Nov 2010
Lt to Rt Stand: Dan Potts, Joe Hunter, ,Larry Theorin , Doug Bateman, Bob Holmes, Curt Gibby, Marcus Presson SIT lt-rt: Al Kibbe, Erasmo Riojas, A.Dee Clark, Dave Cassale
docrio45 [at] gmail DOT com
GulfCoast SEALs Christmas Party in Houston TX 4 Nov 2010
Enrico "Hank" Tonga's Photo Album
Enrico "Hank" Tonga book
These guys, in these photos, are all from UDT 4, I signed up at seventeen in 1946 dischared at Twenty one in 1949; I left UDT 4 in oct. 1949, Some got out and some made the NAVY their career , WhenCook mentioned big JOHN and you talked a bout Scolice I went looking at some pictures I have I thought you might like to see, they are yours my man.
Take care you hear Have a good day Hank