Submitted by: Albert Schollenberger

Category: Stories

When the Korean War began in June 1950, I signed up, I was single, had five years' experience in construction, and joined the U.S. Navy Seabee Reserves as a Petty Officer.

After a few months of weekly drills and not having been called to active duty, I went to headquarters, Third Naval District, and had orders to active duty initiated. I volunteered for duty in Korea. I felt the single men should volunteer for war areas so the men with families would not be obligated to serve in a war zone.

When I entered active duty USNMCB#4 a mobile battalion, was just being organized, so I became a part of this battalion. Twenty-six days after becoming activated, I was on my way to a tour in the Western Sahara Desert in French Morocco. I sailed on LST 515 which was a flat-bottomed ship with a top speed of six knots.

At that time, we were at sea two days before the Captain was allowed to tell us our destination. This was for our own safety and this assured that no enemy would know where our ship was located or headed.

Today, USMCB#4 is still active and home ported on the west coast. Today, it appears that anyone can check the internet and learn where each member of the USNMCB#4 is located. Detachments of a small number of personnel are, at times, sent on special projects and their location and other information is available on the internet.

Why is this happening? Why jeopardize our military personnel in these times of terrorism strikes? Where is the common sense of 1950? Do we have no military secrets to protect our military personnel? Have we met the enemy, and is it us?

About the author:

Albert Schollenberger Happily married 64 years to sweetheart, Edna May Schollenberger Education: BA Stockton State University of NJ History: USN Seabee Reserve 1950-1954 Member: USNMCB#4, Builder second class, Three overseas tours; Western Sahara, French Morocco, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, Argentina, Newfound Land. Civilian work history: construction work, Carpentry, Mason Work, Crane operator, Catapult and arresting gears mechanic, vending machine mechanic, Newspaper reporter for Egg Harbor News Paper, Accountant, Program Manager, Special Projects, Naval Air Engineering Center Lakehurst, NJ. Social History: Regular church member, 40 year and current member: Cologne Grange #191, Atlantic Pomona Grange #15, NJ State Grange, National Grange 30 year President Cologne Grange #191, 30 year president, Atlantic Pomona Grange #15 Member: American Legion Present: Legislative Chairman, Chaplain, Secretary, AARP Chapter 4191, current 45 year 4-H leader, Life member PTA (Parent Teacher Association), Former Arthur Roan School PTA President, Former Webelo Boy Scout Leader, Troop 176, Former Assistant Girl Scout Leader, Troop 624.