From the Citizen Soldier side: So to continue with my earthquake story. We were called into the National Guard Armory with little guidance. I packed a duffel bag with underwear, socks a toilet kit and spare uniform and drove to the armory without a clue as to what I would get to see.
Being that we were a combat engineer company, we had 15 5 ton dump trucks, back hoes, dozers and all kinds of construction equipment including but not limited to chain saws, hammers, etc.
We also had some other things that the normal civilian construction company would not have...on to the trucks we loaded riot batons, helmets, M-16s, gas mask and lots of MREs. The first rumor was that we were going to San Francisco to shoot looters.
After that rumor, some of us started more rumors. The SF Bay bridge was broken, so we started telling some of the privates we were going to fix it. Before long, there were so many rumors flying around (and I was having a good time starting some of them) that the company commander had to call head quarters to find out what they heck we were going to do.
The news showed bridges and freeway over passes down, buildings on fire, people looting, the cops and fire fighters overwhelmed and out of communications in some areas. A perfect time to send in the National Guard with loaded weapons....right?
This was going to be fun. Our platoon was always the first to get things done...we seemed to have the brightest people who worked the hardest. By midnight we had all of our gear loaded and ready to go. The 2 other platoons couldn't seem to get their act together. First they would load stuff on the trucks, then take it off because some confused leader didn't like the way it was loaded....they went on doing this all night...whilst our platoon tried to get a little sleep.
I got no sleep that night. By 8 am the next morning, without any apparent reason, we then convoyed to a near by former Air Force base and made camp with our tents. Why we went there I still have no friggen idea....but we stayed there a few days and waited for the State to figure out where to send us. I guess there was nobody in authority who had done anything like this before....so they had no idea what to do.
To be cont....