File photo of nuclear test in Mururoa, French Polynesia, 1971

Jun 10, 2009 | Posted by: roboblogger | Full story: BBC

Nearly 40 years after the first of its 210 nuclear tests, France is preparing to compensate people affected by the fallout.

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Rudy

United States

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#1
Jun 30, 2009
 
I'm trying to find proof that US Naval ships were there to observe the French test in 1971! I was aboard the Uss Norton Sound! Does anybody here have any pertinent information on this?
Sparks

Mililani, HI

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#2
Nov 24, 2009
 
Hey shipmate. I was on that cruise aboard the USS NORTON SOUND. I still have the ships crossing the line newpaper too. I don't believe information about that is releasable. However I do recall either Look or Life magazine had a picture and story about it after we returned to home port. That would have been September 1971. We we left home port in July, stopped in Hawaii, and sailed to the South Pacific.
Rudy

Sinton, TX

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#3
Jul 1, 2010
 
I found all the information for that cruise by requesting a copy of the ship's log! I even found a database of all the French Nuclear Tests with dates and the co-ordinates where it was conducted! the co-ordinates for the test site and the ship's were pretty close to one another! The name of the test on Aug14,1971 was "Rhea"! There's even a video of it on YouTube!
Wayne Prather

Oakland, CA

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#4
Feb 4, 2011
 
Hi Rudy, I was on that trip. I do not remember you but you might remember me. I was a Frie Control chief in Third or Fox Division. If you need proof of being on board, request a copy of your record from NAV Pers or whatever they call it now. After I retired I needed some documents and they sent me a copy of my record, in it was a Citation from THE Defense Necular Agency for being on board.
We were the only US Ship but there were at least 10 Countrys represented there.
Wayne Prather FTCS USN Retired.
Rudy wrote:
I'm trying to find proof that US Naval ships were there to observe the French test in 1971! I was aboard the Uss Norton Sound! Does anybody here have any pertinent information on this?
Wayne Prather

Oakland, CA

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#5
Feb 4, 2011
 
More Info
When we crossed the Equator, I was Davy Jones and Gus Fisher was King Neptune.
Before each test the French would always come up on a Com channel and call roll of all the different nations who were monitoring the tests. We always showed the video on the closed circuit TV system on board. I saw the actual status board ot their Block House many times as I was near monitors on AVM1.
Wayne
my name is peter lydon i

Dover, MA

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#6
Mar 17, 2011
 
i was also on board the cruise in the summer of 1971. i was an electricians mate. i am trying to get information on the nuclear test we witnessed by the french? was it june or august of 1971? i am starting to have some health problems.also what is NAV PAC? i;m not sure. any help is greatly appreciated.thank you peter lydon e-mail address is lydonp.bpd@cityofboston.gov thank you again peter lydon
Wayne Prather

Half Moon Bay, CA

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#7
Oct 27, 2011
 
The main test I believe was REA, we were there for a few of them.
Do a search for the Norton Sound Assn. they have reunions and Im sure they will have the info required. Myself I had Non-Hodgkins Lymohoma in 1990, wheather from Agent Orange or Radiation, I do not know.
There is a site where you can get the daters of the tests and the yeld etc...
Wayne
Bill Neeley

United States

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#8
Oct 28, 2011
 
My name is William Neeley and I was an FTM2 in Fox Division on the Norton Sound, during our observations of the French nuclear testing at Mururoa Atoll in the summer of 1971. I was in charge of the closed circuit TV station that Chief Prather previously referred to.
Over the years, I have written several letters and "searched" the internet for information and our connection to the events.
As previously suggested, one of my early letters was to request my medical records from the Bureau of Naval Personnel at 9700 Page Ave, St Louis, MO 63132.
One of the replies to my letters includes a letter from the Navy Dosimetry Center in Bethesda, MD.
This letter identifies the USS Norton Sound (AVM-!) as a "Place of Exposure" to GAMMA radiation from 25 June to 27 August of 1971.
FYI: on March 24, 2009, the French Government reportedly set aside the equivalent of $14 million as an initial amount for their military and civilian "victims" of their nuclear testing in French Polynesia and Algeria.
http://www.life.com/gallery/33842/image/85575...
A shipmate,
Bill Neeley xsailor73 @q.com
Pat Romero

Milwaukee, WI

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#9
Dec 21, 2011
 
I also was aboard during this cruise as a FTM2. I worked the BPDSMS which I believe was part of Third Division. There are other sites that refer to the tests, and after alot of searching I found information on a test called "Encelade" in June 1971. They describe missiles being fired through the cloud to collect data, which I remember observing from the fantail. I also recall the Life magazine picture. I've not experienced health issues but I wanted to find information on this just in case. There was one instance I recall having to surrender a pair of pants and socks due to high readings following a passing rain shower. I do not rmember the crew receiving a citation, but it seems to me the CO did. I could be wrong, but I never received anything.
There are other memories, including Hawaii and Pago Pago, and I do clearly remember SC Prather and MC Fisher. I carry that shellback card to this day. Don't know if I can help anyone but if you have a question please post and I'll try.
Take care shipmates,
SKCS Pat Romero, USN Ret.
Curtis Johnson

Hemet, CA

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#10
Mar 17, 2012
 
I was at the French Atolls nuclear tests. Does anyone remember the appendix operation that was performed while on station there. Our ships doctor was a Chief and he did what had to be done. What a Man!!!
Pat Romero

Milwaukee, WI

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#11
May 2, 2012
 
Curtis Johnson wrote:
I was at the French Atolls nuclear tests. Does anyone remember the appendix operation that was performed while on station there. Our ships doctor was a Chief and he did what had to be done. What a Man!!!
Curtis,
I can't be positive, but now that you mention it I vaguely recall an emergency appendectomy being performed.
If you know of, or have a copy of the shipboard newsletter from that cruise, I'd very much appreciate a copy. I'm not sure but there may have been a cruise book as well.

Pat Romero
peter lydon

Naples, FL

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#12
May 17, 2012
 
I'm still having some health problems but did get some info from the cruise from you guys (thank you) but still need more .got my device record and did not get a citation rather. and got the ships log for the week of august and nothing in that about the blast or the coordinates. and nothing in my service record. I tried to look up life and look magazines and found nothing i am not having much luck finding anything if any one can help please e-mail me (lydon_peter@yahoo.com)
Pat Romero

Milwaukee, WI

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#13
May 17, 2012
 
peter lydon wrote:
I'm still having some health problems but did get some info from the cruise from you guys (thank you) but still need more .got my device record and did not get a citation rather. and got the ships log for the week of august and nothing in that about the blast or the coordinates. and nothing in my service record. I tried to look up life and look magazines and found nothing i am not having much luck finding anything if any one can help please e-mail me (lydon_peter@yahoo.com)
Peter,
I will look through my records and see if I can narrow down the Dates. Hopefully someone else will see this post and comment as well. I'll keep in touch.
Pat
isln

Panorama City, CA

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#14
May 18, 2012
 
wheres the photos link??
Wayne Prather

Oakland, CA

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#15
Nov 30, 2012
 
Curtis Johnson wrote:
I was at the French Atolls nuclear tests. Does anyone remember the appendix operation that was performed while on station there. Our ships doctor was a Chief and he did what had to be done. What a Man!!!
I retired as FTCS and I was on the Sound. The Chief Corpsman was Doc Sweet, I think he might have went to the Phoenix area, not positive. There was some company wanting info on the trip , they were back east somewhere. I sent them the copy of the commendation from The Defense Nucelar Agency. They said they would let me know if our trip made us eligible. At that time there wasnt even any mention of our participation in them.
Wayne Prather FTCS Retired
Pat Romero

Milwaukee, WI

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#16
Dec 1, 2012
 
Wayne Prather wrote:
<quoted text>
I retired as FTCS and I was on the Sound. The Chief Corpsman was Doc Sweet, I think he might have went to the Phoenix area, not positive. There was some company wanting info on the trip , they were back east somewhere. I sent them the copy of the commendation from The Defense Nucelar Agency. They said they would let me know if our trip made us eligible. At that time there wasnt even any mention of our participation in them.
Wayne Prather FTCS Retired
Senior Chief; I am also a retired SC and was on the Sound (see my prior postings). My career is a a story for another day but I finally retired from the Navy in April 2010.
Thank you for this post, I also remember Doc Sweet. Like others on this forum, I have no record of the Defense Nuclesr Agency commendation. Is it possible for you to forward me a copy of this commendation? It would be greatly apreciated. My records clearly show my shipboard assignments, but I have not been able to find a reference to the operation and our participation.
I live in Milwaukee, but at the time of my service on the Sound, my hometown was Phoenix, AZ.
If you can forward my request I'll give you an email address other than this forum to send to.
LSCS Patrick Romero, USN (Ret)
Tom bucky Kaylor

Gainesville, GA

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#17
Mar 11, 2013
 
I was with y'all on the sound in 1971 and remember most of you. I was an FTM3 or 2 (depending on the time) worked in the telemetry shack part of third div. any and all info you have would help as I'm starting to have health problems. I'm going to see a VA rep this week and will get any info I can, just have to ask the right questions.I would like to hear from any shipmates even if it just to say hello. tvkaylor@yahoo.com
Pat Romero

Milwaukee, WI

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#18
Mar 12, 2013
 
Tom bucky Kaylor wrote:
I was with y'all on the sound in 1971 and remember most of you. I was an FTM3 or 2 (depending on the time) worked in the telemetry shack part of third div. any and all info you have would help as I'm starting to have health problems. I'm going to see a VA rep this week and will get any info I can, just have to ask the right questions.I would like to hear from any shipmates even if it just to say hello. tvkaylor@yahoo.com
Hi Tom,
Not sure if I remember you, but I do recall also working in the TM station. I remember we ripped out some old equipment and replaced it with more "modern" technology. I also recall reading the plots whenever we did a BPDSMS shoot to see if we scored a hit.
I have posted here a couple of times but have not heard back from anyone specific. Please let me know if you do get a direct contact.
Pat
Joey Salisbury FTM3

King George, VA

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#19
Mar 22, 2013
 
Been there done that, didn't get a tee shirt.

I remember most of you guy, especially you Chief Prather.

jlsalisbury@msn.com
Pat Romero

Milwaukee, WI

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#20
Mar 23, 2013
 
Joey Salisbury FTM3 wrote:
Been there done that, didn't get a tee shirt.
I remember most of you guy, especially you Chief Prather.
jlsalisbury@msn.com
Welcome to the forum, hopefully we'll get more folks onboard. I'm sure we could help each other by sharing any information about this cruise.
Pat

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