Air Force to downsize staff at closed...

Air Force to downsize staff at closed King Salmon base

There are 42 comments on the Anchorage Daily News story from Oct 27, 2009, titled Air Force to downsize staff at closed King Salmon base. In it, Anchorage Daily News reports that:

The U.S. Air Force is cutting back the contract staff at its King Salmon facility, officials announced on Tuesday.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Anchorage Daily News.

Tom Littlepage

Evansville, IN

#22 Dec 23, 2012
I was a Firefighter from 11-89 to 11-90. It was a tough but rewarding time. The winter was Not fun but the summer was a blast. I would like to go back someday just to look around.
Mike Murphy

Pineville, LA

#23 Apr 27, 2013
Was there 62-63 injoyed the time i had there .I was in fire and crash rescue i was an A/1C when i arrived i beat the other A/1C out of B shift house capt, by two months man he was mad!! I still see the look on his face!(funny) But i made S/S up there i liked it . Good fishing good people

Escondido, CA

#24 May 26, 2013
When did the AFS or auxiliary field close down? I remember I had orders to King Salmon as the NCOIC of the Weather Detachment there in Mar 1988. However, I decided to separate and start a new career and life in San Diego, CA.

Sorry to hear it is no more.

United States

#25 Jul 5, 2013
Was stationed at the king in 1971. Was station capt. In the fire dept. msgt. Pisko was fire chief. Lot of memories. Remember the phone operator in the lower 48 named jean. She would come on every evening and let us call our love ones back home ten minutes at a time. Last one on could talk till you got cut off. She was a life saver. Wein air lines did a great job getting the mail in. Never missed. Great tour but once was enough. To hard being so far from wife and kids.


Since: Mar 11

Rockin' USA ;)

#26 Jul 21, 2013
DUH...If the Base is CLOSED.. Am sure..THAT there are Zippity Do Da...Noooooo...BODY there...

SINCE this thread is three years old!!!
Dan Walters King CAC

San Antonio, TX

#27 Jul 21, 2013
NCOIC of Combat Alert Center (CAC)...'79 -'80.
RE: Colorado Chick
Wake up chick ... just so happens that this thread is for informational purposes, and memories. Either join in or get out. I'm sure everyone would like to share your memories.


Since: Mar 11

Rockin' USA ;)

#28 Jul 21, 2013
Dan Walters King CAC wrote:
NCOIC of Combat Alert Center (CAC)...'79 -'80.
RE: Colorado Chick
Wake up chick ... just so happens that this thread is for informational purposes, and memories. Either join in or get out. I'm sure everyone would like to share your memories.
EXCUUUSE ME....Ya ever HEAR of a PHONE CALL to YOUR Comrades.. WHO served there with ya..DUDE????
Peter Geraldizo

Lodi, CA

#29 Aug 7, 2013
I was stationed at the King from '64-'65.It was great experience, working on firetrucks. The winters were cold and the fishing was great. Always hoped to go back for a visit but the opportunity never materialized.


Since: Mar 11

Rockin' USA ;)

#30 Aug 12, 2013
THINK they have accomplished this MISSION by NOW???
Bill Denby

Houston, TX

#31 Dec 4, 2013
Was stationed there from 1970-71, radar maintenance. Was a place in town (haha) that served a really good omelet called it a 49er. We'd walk down on Sunday morning and have one. Had an outside corner room and boy did it get cold. We would stack cokes and beer in the closet and in the winter it stayed ice cold. Fishing was great. Bears were a pain. Spent most of the time in the NCO club or the movie theater. Had some good times and some not so good times. Made some good friends.
Still got my "Choosen Frozen" award on the wall.


Since: Mar 11

Rockin' USA ;)

#32 Dec 4, 2013
Better that. Working Part-Time...
Ed Franklin Norwalk Oh

North Royalton, OH

#33 Mar 12, 2014
I was stationed at the King 10/57-10/58 in radar operations. I came as a 1 year old A/3c and left as an A/2c. Great hunting & fishing, and I matured a lot. Rotated to Geiger Field 823rd AC&W, Spokane, Wa. After a year at Geiger, I was selected for S.A.G.E school and served the rest of my time a McChord AFB, Tacoma, Wa. With my 4 years of experience in AC&W/SAGE, I hooked up with the Department of the Navy working tactical data systems and combat system information systems for the next 40 years. I was selected to head up the software testing for the aircraft carriers and was afforded the opportunity to ride the carriers when installing the software. Great job from which I am retired.
Michael McFalls

Candler, NC

#34 Mar 28, 2014
I was stationed at King Salmon from 75 to 76. I loved the fishing , but the white sox and dark swarms of Alaska's state birds would not allow me to call it paradise. Great times in the Air Force, and had many good friends around the world. I would enjoy hearing from some of my old King Salmon buddies. I watch explorer/ live on the internet from Brooks Camp up at Katmai, N.P. in the summertime and remember wonderful times visiting there. Happy Trails !
Lew Ward

Petaluma, CA

#36 Oct 1, 2014
Bob Sakowski wrote:
I was stationed there from April 1964 to April 1965... Radar tech in the 705th.
<quoted text>
I was there at the same time. Like you , I arrived just after the big earthquake. I was in the 1930th Det 2 Comm. Squadron as an Air Traffic Control Radar Technician. Our GCA unit was located off the side of the runway and was used for guiding both military and civilian aircraft into King Salmon airport. Was a long year away from my wife , a four year old son and a six month old son. Fishing was great but I was pretty miserable being away from my family for so long.

Lew Ward
MSgt USAF Retired
Petaluma CA

San Antonio, TX

#37 Oct 5, 2014
Will be posting a humorous story, from the Combat Alert Center , when I was there
in '79 -'80. I have to e-mail it to myself so I can post it. Concerns 'Hot Shot'
fighter pilots that frequented King Salmon, fom Elmendorf.

“NCOIC Combat Alert Center. '79”

Since: Oct 14

Cibolo, Texas

#38 Oct 5, 2014
I had to re-register in order to post. I am sorry if this long post shows up twice.
"Two,"   "Three,"  "Four."
When one is flying, or preparing to fly a military aircraft (or civilian), there are certain procedures that are supposed to be followed.  These written procedures come from the FAA.  For U.S.fighter pilots, additional or supplemental procedures are also to be followed.  One major procedure is "when to taxi onto an active runway!"  Also, when the Flight Leader gives commands to the rest of the aircraft pilots in his flight, for brevity, it's common for the pilots of the other aircraft to merely respond with their flight position number, meaning that the command was received and understood.
While assigned to the King Salmon Combat Alert Center, in Alaska, as NCOIC and Senior
Controller, we had a flight of four F-4E Phantom fighters divert into our quiet little part of the
world one afternoon, for a quick refuel, and then return to their base at Elmendorf AFB.
At King Salmon, the Combat Alert Center, with the discretion of the senior pilot on alert, had control of the take-off direction for our alert aircraft.  For purposes of Air Defense, it was necessary - there was only one runway!  The FSS (Flight Service Station) people at King Salmon were civilians, and normally controlled the day to day operation of the runway, unless there was an active Air Defense mission underway.  I always tried to maintain a certain degree of harmony between our Air Defense operation and the civilian flying operation of the FSS people, because I was only  going to be there for a year, and the FSS people lived there!  The only thorn in my side was the fighter pilots, and the way some of them showed a little disrespect and disdain for some of the "rules of the sky," on occasion.  You can take an ordinary, by the book, pressed suit, right down the middle of the road pilot, put him in
the cockpit of a jet fighter, and he turns into a different person.  Of course, as I have heard,
it takes much more than an ordinary pilot to be a good fighter pilot.  Commanders know this.
I had the Wing Commander (a full Colonel) as senior alert pilot for one week, and he was
nearly as bad as any young pilot I ever had on alert!  When it came to horseplay, he was
right in the middle of it every time. 
Well, back to the story ... the F-4s got refueled, in front of the alert hangar, and then got taxi clearance from FSS, and proceeded to the end of the runway.  We always monitored everything on our  UHF aircraft radios, in the Combat Alert Center, and I heard the FSS say,  "Cleared to taxi to the end of the runway ... hold short for ATC (Air Traffic Control) clearance."  It doesn't take a scientist to understand that he meant taxi to just short of the end of the  runway, and then STOP and wait for take-off clearance.
Here's where it gets funny ... the four F-4s (8 pilots strapped into their rockets), taxi to the end of the runway, and then I heard on the radio, "taking the active ... ,"  then, "Two,"  "Three,"  "Four."  I didn't realize what was happening for about five seconds, and then two F-4s came
screaming down the runway, with their noses reaching for the sky.  About two seconds later,
the other two F-4s came screaming down the runway, on the heels of their master.
"##Final part of story in next post##"

“NCOIC Combat Alert Center. '79”

Since: Oct 14

Cibolo, Texas

#39 Oct 5, 2014
###Final part of story###

"Two,"   "Three,"  "Four."

The aircraft hadn't even got their landing gear in the wells before the Direct Line to the FSS
started jumping off the wall!  "What the hell is going on over there," someone yelled at me.
Then the voice said,  "I told them to hold."  What could I say ... "Sir, I'm sorry.   I'm not sure myself," I said to the voice.  He made it clear that he was going to report it upchannel, and that somebody's ass was going to get burned.  I calmed the voice down as much as possible, and then quietly hung the phone back on the wall.   I told the senior alert pilot what had happened, and it didn't get much more than a grin.  Never heard anything more about that little joy ride.
The Flight Commander of the four F-4s knew the runway was clear of other aircraft and
vehicles, and knew that he had ATC clearance, so he had just decided to "make our day,"
by showing us how hot he was.  I could see what was happening too, and wasn't all that
concerned, and deep inside I was laughing a little too!

Does anyone in this Forum remember that little 'happening?'
Jimmie Hancock

Edgewater, FL

#43 Jan 27, 2015
I was a circuit riding Chaplain in Alaska around 1971 and visited King Salmon many times. I conducted the first formal military wedding at the site. The story made the AF Times. The couple was Capt Richard "Dick" Galloway and a local lady from King Salmon named Janis Bittner. I wonder whatever happened to them??? I also met the movie actor Jack Lemmon and his son Chris who were at King Salmon for a fishing trip.
Louise harper

Cartersville, GA

#44 Aug 29, 2015
My husband Ben Harper was stationed there from 1966 to 1967. He enjoyed his tour & we got married shortly after his return. He killed a big caribou and the troops ate the meat. The rack is hanging up in our sons cabin in N Georgia. He always said it was the largest that year. He was a Captain and full of fun. He passed away December 2009.
Barry Gunning

Ewa Beach, HI

#45 Mar 6, 2016
I was the RAPCON Chief Controller from Sep 93 to Sep 94 when we closed the place up. I retired after over 22 years, and have to say King Salmon was the best assignment I had.

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