27 August 2009

How, where, what,,,,you drove that?

From the Soldier side: Several weeks ago, when I was down at wonderful asssucking Camp Roberts, CA, we took a walk to the PX. On the way back, I told some of the lads that there was a small museum near.
As we walked closer, I had a flashback to 1976. There, sitting at the back of the building was the remains of a Gamma Goat truck.
It was missing the canvas tops, the windshield, seats and other parts, but I could tell what she was.
The new 2nd LT and others with me couldn't figure out why this vehicle was made like it was. It was a good idea to start with, but turned out to be a real P.O.S.
Still, when I was 19 years old, it was fun to drive across the forest in Germany.
I became very good at operating this truck. I could cross water, take on ice and snow, roll down hills in the dark with the engine off to sneak up on people. The engine was a 3 cylinder diesel that was so loud, you couldn't normally sneak up on the gas pump. I could get the max speed out of her (65MPH) and do anything with her.
This one had been de-commissioned to be a target on the gun range, but I guess somebody thought they should restore it.
(Speaking of targets. A big bus company had donated several highway buses to be targets at Camp Roberts. The camp staff looked at the buses and said: "heck, we can use these to drive troops around on the camp---so what if they're not safe to drive on the highway anymore." )
California has the largest population in the country, the National Guard is bigger than many countries entire Army, and yet was have the absolute worst training camp in the country. The Iraqi Army had better buildings and equipment.
Oh, but that Gamma Got brought back such great memories. Germany in the 1970's, I was an E-4 making a whopping $398.00 a month (before taxes) no wife, no kids, good beer, not a worry in the world.


LL said...

The last time I saw a gama goat, it was towing anti-aircraft artillery for the 82nd Airborne (at least thirty years ago) - that dates me.

Red said...

Isn't it intersting how some small thing can trigger so many memories?

CI-Roller Dude said...

The Goat was some vehicle. I think I would have designed it a lot differntly.
The 82nd Air brone used to air drop them. If anybody remembers the old Army add on TV from the
80's. They showed a bunch of guys jumping out of planes...and a gamma goat.
There was one soldier who they did a close up on... he said: "Good morning 1st sergeant."
That guy got busted for using drugs later. (a story from a buddy of mine who was in the 82nd at that time.)
I was never crazy enough to jump out of a good plane.

Coffeypot said...

If you want better training facilities, attack and take over the AF base. You can dig foxholes on the golf course.

chupacabra said...

Gama Goat- just reading those words made my hears ring. I mean I literally remember that 2 cycle Detroit could make you want to puke after a road march of any length- even with hearing protection. An awful military vehicle but, lot's of fun.