Aberdeen Proving Ground - Yearbook (Aberdeen, MD)

 - Class of 1943

Page 17 of 72

 

Aberdeen Proving Ground - Yearbook (Aberdeen, MD) online yearbook collection, 1943 Edition, Page 17
Page 17



Text from page 17:


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HlSTlllll UF THE "MONSTER" No, we were nof creafed by a Frankensfein, nor did we ever consider ourselves as a monsfer: buf for fhirfeen weeks we were a learning and drilling machine. We were builf wifh precision and of fhe besf available maferial. The Ordnance Officer Candidafe School searched far and wide for fhe subsfances for fhis machine. Despife fhe facf fhaf fhe counfry was af war and sea fravel haz- ardous, imporfs of parfs were made from Iceland, from Hawaii, and from fhe Solomon Islands. As fhe packages of fhe segmenfs arrived, fhey showed by fheir braids sources from all arms and services. All parfs were assembled on Jan. I4, l943. The com- posifion of fhe machine numbered 23l separafe and dis- fincf pieces. Af firsf, liffle efforf was made fo properly gear and fasfen fhe parfs fogefher, and for several days fhe resulfanf body wobbled awkwardly on unsfable feef, and ifs mind lwhaf mind fhere wasl wandered aimlessly fhrough uncharfed ways. Buf fhe school officials had a iob fo do, and done if would be. They had had previous experiences in fhe building of such machines. The crea- fion of our mechanism was fheir fhirfy-sevenfh affempf, fheir previous record had been excellenf, and fhey were defermined nof fo fail wifh us. Thus was our mechanical body assembled and, when complefed, labeled "Class No. 37." The confused creafion needed guidance, and fhe au- fhorifies in fheir wisdom, placed fhe mechanism under 'rhe confrol and supervision of Lieufenanf Douglas Puf- nam. Lieufenanf Pufnam had successfully famed such mechanisms fwice previously, for he had nurfured our predecessors of Company L, Class No. 9 and Class No. 23. And lesf fhe creafure should prove unconfrollable for one man, fhe able assisfance of Lieufenanf C. R. Geffe was invoked. This was nof a one-man iobg for fhe obiecf was fo fame fhe mechanical body and af fhe same fime polish and smoofh each of ifs separafe parfs. The polishing began wifh a gusfo on Monday, Jan. l8. Oh, fhere was marvelling and wondermenf when The hor- rible "monsfer" firsf appeared in public. The creafure's arms and legs flew in all direcfionsg and fhe school faculfy fore fheir hair in bewilderrnenf. Our insfrucfors had so firmly sef fhemselves fo fheir work, however, fhaf fhey were fo succeed under any circumsfances. For eighf Elllllll ll OF ABERDEEN hours daily fhey oiled and greased and polished fhe brain-sfrucfure af H-lp and for an hour daily fhey scoured and rubbed and "chewed" fhe body on fhe drill field. Affer nof foo many days, a bif of coordinafion could be observed bofh wifhin fhe brain-sfrucfure and befween fhe brain and body. Even affer five weeks of experf shaping, fiffing, and lubricafing, some parfs of fhe sfrucfure seemed fo grafe and refard fhe mofion of fhe creafure. A fhorough check was made of each parf, and on Feb. 23, fhe body was forn down complefely lby emofional sfrainl and reassem- bled, less fiffy some odd parfs. Af firsf, if seemed fhaf fhe new assemblage would nof work so well, because some parfs missed fhose parfs fhaf had been removed. Buf as fhe oils of enfhusiasm spread, fhe mechanism real- ly began fo funcfion smoofhly in abouf fhe sixfh week of ifs exisfence. True if was, a few parfs were sfill mis- placed, buf such were removed wifhouf affecfing fhe body. Then one day in April, fhe machine suddenly disin- fegrafed, and, wonder of wonders, each parf furned ouf fo be a living and breafhing second lieufenanf. All fhaf remained of fhe "Monsfer" of Aberdeen was g-old bars and heads sfeeped in knowledge of Ordnance. The cre- afors of fhe "lv1onsfer" had succeeded in polishing and smoofhing fhe parfs info perfecf young officers. Wifh iusf pride, fhe officials of fhe Ordnance Officer Candidafe School, fhe school insfrucfors, and fhe com- mander of Company L senf fheir producfs ouf fo meef fhe public during academic leaves. The producfs fhem- selves leff in high spirifs, and heighfened fheir spirifs while away. If was war-fime, however, and pride in fhe accomplish- menfs of all conceived had fo give way fo dufy, a mosf honorable dufy, fhaf of serving one's counfry in ifs need. Such dufy has called our men fo fhe four corners of fhe earfhg such dufy may fake fhe lives of some of our men. We fake solace, however, nof in our personal well being, buf in fhe well being of our counfry and fhose fhaf in- habif if: yes, even more, we fake solace in fhe well being of a decenf world cifizenry. lf is such a well being fhaf we will have helped fo achieve.

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