Pacific Crossing

Pacific Crossing

What fun it was for me to read Jim Barber’s account of sailing on the good ship Breckinridge. I, too, shipped to Japan on her January, 1958. His tales of the challenges in the forward head were honestly right on. I want to add how difficult it was maneuvering safely on the slippery liquid and other matter on that sloped tile floor in typhoon conditions. He didn’t mention the joy we experienced when the above deck dependents of other services carried their pets down the ladder to do their business on the tiny deck space the marines were mounded, gasping for fresh air. Overall, it was a fine 23 day cruise with the screw out of the water about half the time. To you and your other marine subscribers, Semper Fi.
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6 comments


  • Sgt T. K. Shimono (59-68)

    I was on the ship with Jim with 3/5. Like he said, a ship full of seasick Marines that have never been on a rocking transport sure was a mess, but we made it. After we made the crossing, nothing bothered us any more (amphibious landing, air assaults, etc.). I look at this as a baptism for all Marines. The lucky ones today enjoy the flight by air. Semper Fi


  • Gary Nash

    After a relatively calm six months in the Mediterranean, we returned to Morehead City in December aboard APA 38, the USS Chilton. It was not fun, crossing the Atlantic in December, but I’ll tell you who had less fun: The members of our BLT aboard the LST!


  • R. Kimball

    I had the same above experiences aboard the General Gaffey in Aug 1964. The only good thing about that was we pulled into Guam for ship repairs. One of the civilian workers took us up to the Rose’s Cantina. Twas a good time had by all.


  • A. McMahill

    My crossing was aboard the good ship Gen. Black. Experience was exactly the same. How was it possible that these ships always seemed to run into storms? My close encounter with sea sickness was right after we cleared the breakwater off San Diego’s shore. By the time we hit the storm I was totally recovered, well mostly. I too remember thinking the ship was about to come apart when you felt the screws going in and out of the troughs. But it was a glorious day when we arrived dockside in Kobe, Japan..


  • bruce bender

    crossed the Atlantic on a MSTS the Gen R M Blachford- ?? We hit a squall in the North Atlantic- and our racks were 6 or 8 high–I had a top bunk because no one wanted one up so high- when one Marine got seasick at night- his emissions went down the other racks to the deck- some pissed off Marines. the heads were enclosed in small lips or bulkheads separating the crappers from the urinals- and if the ship rocked or swayed the flotsam and refuse of what did not make their targets floated around in the head? I was on staff mess duty- and during the height of the storm I had a rope tied around my waist- as I emptied G I Cans over the fantail- as the Mess Sgt. told me if I dropped a G I can over the aft portion of the deck- he would cut the rope with a machete- Hope he was kidding- LOL Still pleasant memories of shipboard life- My Buddy was on Firewatch and had to walk the deck in a slicker in this storm- we survived because we were Marines!


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