Friday, April 12, 2013

{Almost} A Bittersweet Reunion...finding Carol "Yul" Marcelle

The miserable spate of weather for the past few days just isn't getting any better, and nothing on the near horizon appears to be going to change that fact..at least 3 to 4 inches in the past 40 hours, with more on the way for next week....and cold has moved in as well.  I can't really complain though, talking with my friend Jim up in Minot, North Dakota, this morning, he says it is 30 this morning with five to 8 inches of snow on the way....that we can do without!

Games have been cancelled for the past two nights, tonight's contest, at least here on the JV Diamond at Westview Park has probably a zero chance of being played....and tomorrow the varsity double header north at Wayne Trace is probably not going to happen either, just not enough sun, wind, or warm, to dry things out anytime soon.   Next week doesn't look all that good either....

A Bittersweet Reunion, of Sorts.....

When the Internet was getting into full swing, back in the late 1990s, I was working on my family genealogy probably 40 or 50 hours a week at the beginning{winter of 1998-99}, I worked hard core on that and finally penned a book on my family from my GGGG-Grandfather's{Jacob Hauswirth} arrival in America back in 1751...notes from the book and Genealogy findings surrounded around my GGG-Grandfather, Israel Houseworth and family, and can be found here:

http://israelhouseworth.blogspot.com/

Feel free to browse this blog, best to start from the beginning and work your way forward.....

Anyway I am getting off target/course/etc....while I was working on my genealogy and roots, I came across the VSPA{Vietnam Security Police Association}....I had pretty well ignored my four years in the Air Force and my year in Vietnam for nearly 30 years.   The VSPA Changed all that, and I joined, and immediately begin to find guys I was stationed with in Vietnam, especially my time at Nha Trang, the little base on the South China Sea.  It also gave me the opportunity to begin, along with other Internet Sources, to find guys I was stationed with elsewhere, and over the past 14 years.  Claflin, Gates, Bevan, Payan, Walsh, Dei, Howie



Prichard, and others have been found...sadly others have passed away.  I found Jack Friedl's wife, he had died tragically in 1992, managed to find my Nha Trang boss, Phil Lange for a few years, before he passed away, my old Basic Training TI, and fellow Sky Cop at Tan Son Nhut, Joe Prokop, had passed away in Wisconsin.  Others I still occasionally look for, Melvin Sloan, my supervisor at Nha Trang, guys from Tan Son Nhut, Dover, Griffiss, etc....as we get older, I realize many have passed on....I found one of those a few days ago, or at least he, in the form of his son, had found me.


I was checking my e-mail the other day, and as I was deleting the spam, smut, and repeated jokes, I came across this e-mail from a name I didn't at first recognize:

Hello Mr. Houseworth
I found your blog online while doing research, I'd like to talk to you
about someone
you mentioned and commented positively on from Griffiss. That was
Carol Marcelle of the 416th SPS
I'm his son Matthew, he died when I was 11 months old. I would really
love (want and need to) to talk to you. Please email me back and let
me know if you'd be willing and the best time to get ahold of you..
Thank you

Bingo! 

Carol Marcelle was 20 years my senior, a jovial black Staff Sgt with 20 years in the Air Force.  He was one of the Senior NCOs on our shift at Griffiss, AFB, NY, when I returned from Vietnam.   "Yul" as we called him, because of his shaved head, looking like a black version of Hollywood's Yul Brynner...today lot of folks have shaved heads, back then we guessed Marcelle's was natural.  He had returned from Germany with a wife and they had a few kids at the time...and Yul was one of the guys the Air Force pretty much screwed over....20 years and 4 stripes, while smart asses like me, who despised the Air Force and it's "Mission" had made NCO with 3 stripes...in 18 months.  What the Hell were they thinking?...."Mission, Mission, F**k The Mission"

Anyway Carol had gotten me and my main fellow traveler, Jack Friedl, out of many of tight spots....I won't go into most, but one time he went to bat for me, was not pleasant...and I'm sure he paid the price for it from the brass.  I had just came back from leave back in Ohio, and had not had a haircut in probably months....SAC frowned on Air Force Cops who refused to stay "Spit and Polished".  Jack and I were assigned to guard a B~52 going through a Nuclear Upload...Marcelle was our shift supervisor.  I was standing outside the "No Lone Zone" when a one star General came strolling up to me....

This asshole really wasn't interested in if the B~52 and Nukes were safe, he was more interested in me and my haircut, or lack of....with less than a year to go in the AF, I really didn't give a rat's ass whether this clown liked me or my haircut.  I had been pushing the envelope with the hardcore SAC Lifers for quite awhile, and this tin horn cowboy was right down my alley...I
showed no respect and didn't give any.  Anyway, Carol Marcelle, payed the price....Ol' Yul had to try to make excuses for my hair...I think his line was "Well Sir, Houseworth here, just got off 15 days of leave"...that didn't cut it with the General, so Yul had to take my place while I was relived to go get a haircut...lol, I did, but just a trim...I never saw that General again, and Carol Marcelle, never seemed to hold it against me...in truth I believe he had as little respect for the SAC and AF Brass,as I did.  He was indeed a great guy, and a true friend.


So, I was excited to see that one of Carol Marcelle's family had found me via this blog....but of course it was with a bittersweet note, he had passed away, many years ago it appears....hopefully young Matt will call me one of these days, soon and I can fill in the blanks on my late friend, Carol "Yul" Marcelle.

back later>>>

Photos-Carol "Yul" Marcelle's Air Force ID that his son Matthew sent me...The VSPA has helped me recall my time in the Air Force, both good and bad, and find friends, both still alive and those passed....The dreaded B~52, not my favorite work site/station....and here I am "Captain Hair"  It all seems funny and juvenile these days, but I wore it long, just to piss off as many of the brass ass as I could.

3 comments:

Buck said...

Good story, Pat. Finding old friends is always a good thing, but it's pretty special when their sons or daughters reach out to you.

mark brooks said...

pretty good one. :o) Sorry to hear about your buddy. He sounds like a guy I would go to war with.
mark

Jim Watson said...

Great story Pat I remember getting my first computer and typing in USAF Sentry Dog Handler and the VDHA web site.From there I found a bunch of guys that I thought I would never see or here from again.To this day I am closer to those AF friends than any body I went to school with