DD(Dad’s Diary) 73

On The USS-Merrill(DD-976)we deployed from San Diego , the destroyer was in a Carrier Battle Group , it had a tiny Flight deck for the H-2 Helicopter , And as Ive Posted before The Rough seas were rather harsh on the small ship (we could almost hear the folks on the larger ships wondering where we went in the rolling seas , now they’re back! )In Foul weather the Kitchen was closed , which was good for us , as food didn’t sound too good anyway! If the seas were somewhat rough we were able to walk to the mess decks for cold cuts , and when the seas were even rougher we stayed in our small hangar and had someone bring us the paper plates and the cold cuts for us . We kept the helicopter chained down always , but even more when the seas were rough . And on smooth days we left it out in the sunshine , But when mother nature came calling (which was rare in the south pacific) we kept it in the safety of the small hangar , away from the corrosive salt spray. And when the seas were rough we were rather sure to keep it secured at all times ┬áso moving it to and from the flight deck had to be done carefully , we used the tie down chains (which were like come along chains) to sort of inch the helicopter a little at a time , to keep it secured to the ship