Stories of Service: Phil Elsner
My service started when I went to Coney Island and I saw a Navy recruiting officer. Since I was 21, I went in and I enlisted. That was June, 1964. I was told to report on August fourth and I went into the city by subway. I was sworn in and then they took all of us to a diner for breakfast. The next thing we were all on a bus to Kennedy airport and this was my first plane ride. I had a great time! We landed at O’Hare airport and then they took us by bus to the Great Lakes R.T.C. I was there from August until November, 1964 and I was in Company 444. From graduation I went home for leave and then I reported to my first duty station which was at the Anacostia Naval Air Station. When I got there I was put into Special Services. As I was still was a seaman recruit I transferred to airman recruit, and then I took the test for airman in December of 1965. I got orders to report to the U.S.S Yorktwon CVS 10 in Long Beach, CA. When I got aboard I made my way to the ships’ photo lab and I was accepted as a member of ops division. I worked in the ships lab for the two years that I was aboard. We did two combat tours off the coast of Vietnam and that was in May, June, July and August of 1966. In August of 1967 I was honorably discharged as a petty officer third class photo mate.
Thank you. – Phil Elsner, PH-3 Ret.
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