Submitted by Bob Ames
That sure brought up a lot of memories, including getting sick on my first flight to calibrate the MAD equipment. I was a Julie/ECM operator 67 - 70. So I got about half of my flight time in a P2. I don't know how "legal" the charging in on the Russian coastline was, but I'm sure glad caution was employed when rigging Russian warships. I remember listening to their radar on ECM as they went from tracking to lock-on with their fire control. That always had me worried. On one of our flights, I even confirmed us being checked out by a Mig.
I loved the challange of the ECM equipment. Once we had been sent out to relocate some Russian warships and were not having any luck with radar. I requested, and was given the opportunity to attempt a detection using ECM. After about a half-hour or so I picked up a signal that matched one of the ships we were looking for. The signal was weak at first, but as I got some bearings and guided the pilot in, it became stronger. Our pilot got a visual and then wanted me to give him an 'on-top' when we went over them. Well the signal got so strong the ECM kept getting knocked off line, but it really didn't matter since we had relocated the ships. I felt pretty good about being able to do my job and contributing to our crew's performance.
Other memories aren't so good like when we were sent out on a SAR for a flyer who accidently ejected from his aircraft. Several patrols went out but he was never found.
Sorry for being so gabby. I definitely don't dwell on the past, however; some times it's nice to bring up those memories and know you were part of a special group of people.