Navy vets reunite in Omaha, share memories of Freedom Park submarine


REUNITING HISTORY — VETERANS WHO SERVED ON TWO “UNITED STATES NAVY” TRAINING CLASS SUBMARINES — COME TOGETHER… RIGHT HERE IN OMAHA. AS CHASE MOFFITT EXPLAINS — WHILE TIME HAS TAKEN IT’S TOLL ON THE SERVICEMEN — JUST FOR A MOMENT — IT ALSO STOOD STILL. SETTLED ON THE SHORES OF THE MIGHTY MISSOURI RIVER — A GREAT NAVY VESSEL IS PARKED IN HER PERMANENT HOME. WELCOME TO THE USS MARLIN — A COLD WAR TRAINING SUBMARINE. TODAY, PAST CREWMAN DAVE PAYNE WILL SERVE AS OUR TOUR GUIDE. “TORPEDO” ON BOARD WE GET AN UP CLOSE LOOK TO TECHNOLOGY, MACHINE WORK AND WEAPONRY– LAST IN SERVICE OVER 40 YEARS AGO. “THE COLLISION ALARM WENT OFF.” FOR PAYNE, THE MEMORIES OF HIS SERVICE ONBOARD THE MARLIN, ARE STILL FRESH IN HIS MIND. AFTER THAT ALARMED SOUNDED PAYNE’S JOB WAS TO GET THE BOAT HEADED OUT OF HARMS WAY — HE STILL REMEMBERS THE CONVERSATION WITH THE SKIP. “I WAS THE NEW GUY ON THE BOAT BUT HE COME BACK AND SAID, CONGRATULATIONS, HE SAID THAT IS THE FASTEST WE EVER GOT THIS THING GOING BACKWARDS, YOU DID A FINE JOB, SHOOK MY HAND.” IT SEEMS THE QUARTERS ARE JUST AS TIGHT AS THEY WERE OVER 50 YEARS AGO WHEN PAYNE SERVED — BUT HE MAKES IT LOOK EASY PASSING THROUGH THE TIGHT SPACES. THAT’S WHERE WE RUN INTO A FELLOW SHIPMATE. “PEOPLE WILL KNOW WHAT SUB SAILERS WENT THROUGH IN THE WAY OF LIVING CONDITIONS, I’VE FORGOTTEN MYSELF, IT’S DEFINITELY CRAMPED, QUITE THE EXPERIENCE FOR A 19 YEAR OLD KID.” “SO 50 YEARS LATER A CHANCE TO TOUCH HISTORY, TO REMEMBER WITH OTHERS WHO’VE ALSO SERVED ON THE SAME SUBMARINE, THE SERVICE AND SACRIFICE FOR OUR COUNTRY.” “BELL RINGNING” NAMES OF THE FALLEN, THOSE ON ETERNAL PATROL READ ALOUD FOR THOSE HERE TO RELFECT ON THE SACRIFICE. “TO SEE ALL THESE PEOPLE WHO WERE ON THE MARLIN, LOOK AT THEIR OLD HOME, KINDA BRINGS A TEAR TO YOUR EYE, 50 YEARS AGO THEY WERE ON THIS BOAT.” IT’S A FRIDAY MORNING TO TAKE IN HISTORY, A BRIEF MOMENT WHEN TIME STOOD STILL ON A FRIDAY MORNING IN OMAHA FOR THESE US NAVY T BOAT VETERANS. CHASE MOFFITT WOWT 6 NEWS. FREEDOM PARK WILL REMAIN OPEN ON SATURDAYS THROUGHOUT THE FALL SEASON — HOURS WILL BE: 10 A-M TO 3. ALSO ON DISPLAY — IS THE WORLD WAR 2 MINE-SWEEPER — THE “U-S-S HAZARD”.

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