Re: when and where was your !st encounter with the m1 garand
Coast Guard 1967 Gutanimo ( GitMo Bay) ( SP) Cuba. pulled guard duty on the pier for our ship the Morganthau - they gave me an M1 & No Bullets.
One month later on TDA going to Alaska awaiting orders had to pull shore patrol with the interservice MP's unit in NYC. Got stuck guarding a polish freighter in Brooklyn. Got issued a 45 and an M1 with live rounds. Polish were jumping ship and never going back. So I tell all of my Polish friends how much more dangerous the Government thinks they are then the Cubans.
Oh I had no training on the M1 what so ever. we used the old Bolt actions in boot camp then the range at fire island and I never saw that piece I signed for again.
here's funny one I was stationed in Cape May. NJ as my first duty station after DC school. Well they need some one to go to town with cash to buy different items we couldn't get through GS Stores ( remember in 1967 we had less men then the NY City police dept. and our budget was smaller) So i got a bond for handling cash ( they wanted a petty officer and i was the newest third class around, bottom of the pole but now liable as a non com) then they needed a guy to do( service and check the fire extinguishers in secure areas so that was under our DC job and i had already completed half the security check. So I got some level i don't even recall secret maybe. So then they decided since I was in the area ( operations something - that since i was lowly and had a clearance that they would get me a higher clearance and have me burn documents ( Carry the boxes and light'em up while a Lt JG watched me ) So then in one of the bunkers they found 4 crates of 45's there were bunkers full of stuff, some from the WW1 sea planes
Any way they were some what rusty even with the cosmo . So they had no paper work and decided to survey. so again since i had all these dumb clearances Yup i had to load them in a International Travel All ( OLD) all our vehicles were navy throw aways. Drive them and that Lt JG to Philadelphia Naval/ Marine Brig. and read the numbers off and the JG read the numbers and some guy from the Treasury Dept wrote them down and I had to take them down and smash everything I could with a 3 lb hammer and throw the pieces in three different barrels. Seal the barrels and the Govt. man put a seal on. what a waste of 45's
Funniest part of the story was I was trying to figure out how to snag one of these. Until we went the the different gates and they got slammed behind us. I knew I was leaving ,but my thoughts of any snagging were Long Gone.