Morse Intercept Operator
6927th Radio Squadron Mobile
Onna Point, Okinawa
Aug 1959 to Feb 1963
Below are images and military documents for this period of time:
This is the only assignment your dad and I nearly had in common. I say “nearly” because my entire unit and I were squatters there in 1959. In Oct of that year, the 6902nd SCG (Special Communications Group) moved from Shiroi AB northeast of Tokyo en masse to Okinawa (supposedly Kadena AB). However, there were only barracks available; there was no secure area for our operations. The 6927th had a new Admin. Building that we occupied until secure facilities could be prepared at Kadena, commuting daily via AF bus. The Admin Bldg was small, so we worked in shifts around the clock whereas we were normally “day ladies”, not trick or shift workers. Like everyone else, I shared a desk with two other analysts in 8 hr shifts; we each had one drawer. We frequently pulled armed guard duty outside when we were not working inside. I rotated back to Japan six months after arriving on Okinawa, and the former 6902nd SCG, redesignated the 6922nd RGM (Radio Group Mobile) was still squatting on Onna Point.
I just remembered the name of the housing area we lived in off base…It was Chibana. After just seeing again the picture you posted, I can’t believe we lived in that little cracker box. We were perfectly content with it at the time. Mom
I was a morse int. op. at Onna Pt. from Jan. 61 to Nov. 62 and I believe I recognize your Dad. I enjoyed my tour and it remains one of the best experiences of my 67 yrs on this planet. All the best, Mickey
I was assigned to the 6927th from Jan 61 to Nov 62. Your Dad looks very familiar to me. This was one of my greatest memories and experiences of my 67 yrs thus far and I was a police officer for more than 20 years in N.Y.
Was stationed at Onna Point from June 1960 until Jan 1962. A ditty bopper. Also played a lot of baseball, The Kadena Falcons.
Understand that “Onna Pt” has been since leveled and disappeared.
Remember the good guys I worked with day and night and especially the “Habu”. Don’t walk in the tall grass. jack
I was at Onna Point during the period your Dad was there. I can’t say that I remember him, but I am sure that we crossed paths. Some of his special orders have the names of some of my old pals. SO-P-109, 1 Aug 61 has SSG Fairley and A1C Robert Fenstermacher, both good friends. Also SO-P-43, 14 June 62 has SSGT John L. Fischer, aka Gus, who was another one.
Lots of familiar names.
You have done a great job of creating this wonderful memory of your Dad. Lots of good memories for lots of us former USAFSS folks as well.
I was an high speed morse code operator AFSC 29331 at Onna Point from Oct.1956 to April 1958. Shortly after Onna Point was started up. Best 19 months I had in the USAF! After leaving Onna Point I was assigned to Carswell AFB in Ft. Worth Texas as a teletype operator for SAC aircraft. Only thing I hated, it took me 37 months to make A/1c tho.
I was stationed at Onna Point in August of 1963 to 1965. I was a Ditty Bopper. I remember the water behind our barracks was crystal clear. We had a Scuba team that our Sergant ram rodded.
We also had a baseball team.
This site really brings back a lot of good memorys.
Just reading comments about Onna Point. I was there, April,1957 thru December, 1958. It was just new, and compound very nice. Loved swimming in that coral ,beautiful blue water. Wished I could contact some of the Airmen who I worked with. Sgt Newman was our NCO. I kept a diary of all the days stationed there. Just names, events of weather, etc. Fun to recall those days. Experienced one bad Hurrican in that time. P.S. I still recall the code, but what I’d give for a receiver, and a typewriter!!!
I was at Onna Feb 62-Oct 63. I also was a dittybob. I don’t remember your father but I’m sure we pass each other at some time. I was a “Baker Trick Bee” and our barracks was the two story building that also housed the chow hall. You could always tell when our bus was at the Kadena bus station because it was the only Blue bus that looks like the old school buses. With our own beach area and several caves plus the VOA right up the road, it was probably the best duty station on Okinawa. Also the chow hall had waitress who took our chow order and brought them back to the tables. Our theater was #26, the last theater to get the movies. Watch them at Kadena #1 and than again when they finally got to us. Such a long time ago.
Arrived at Onna Point in July of 1962 and left for Crete in January of 1964 as part of the 2T program. I was a “ditty bopper” on “A” Flight. Our barracks was the first building on the right as you entered through the gate. “C” Flight was right next to us. 18 months of my young life that I will never forget. AR SK BT
I was stationed on Onna in May of 1958 to Sept of 1959. some of the people I remember were named: Jim Stroud, Bill Cody, Ted Kiviatkowsi(linguist) Bill Zango(roommate) Martha’s Vinyard, Mass. Cody was from Mass and a kid named Harold Lowe was from Michigan.All of us, with the exception of Ted were Ditty Boppers. We didn’t have any 1 levels, we graduated fm Keesler as A/2c (old rank E-3) and soon tested for 5 level. We were all 5 levels before our 1st year was out. If I remember correctly Onna Point was an unaccompanied tour, most of the troops I knew were single, even our flight commander Lt Thomas O’Rourk was single. As far as I can remember, we had no female personel or accompanied personel. Our afsc was 29250, Radio Intercept operator. Operator.
ARRIVED OKI WITH 4 OTHER CRYPTO OPERATORS 1 OCT 59. SINCE THE 6922 RGM HAD NOT ARRIVED YET WE WORKED AT ONNA PT 6927RSM FOR SOME TIME, WHILE LIVING AT KADENA. THE 4 GUYS WERE JOE MIESENGER (NOW DECEASED), GENE WEUSTEWALD (YANKTON, SD), LESTER SOUCIE(COLLEGE STATION, TX) JOHN DONNELLY(WHEREABOUTS UNKNOWN) & MY-SELF, HAROLD (HARRY) JONES (NORTH LITTLE ROCK, ARKANSAS). WE LEFT OKI MAR 61.
WAS IN A MEN’S SINGING GROUP THERE CALLED “6922RGM MEN’S CHORUS” UNDER THE DIRECTION OF AIRMAN DICK BLANCHARD. I AM STILL IN CONTACT WITH BILLY DIAMOND FROM ALABAMA (A MEMBER OF THE GROUP) AND LES SOUCIE, MENTIONED ABOVE. LOVED MY TIME ON OKI AND MY WHOLE AF EXPERIENCE.
I was stationed on Onna fm May of 1958 to Sept of 1960. I was a ditty bopper. At that time there were no accompanied tours or female operators, females of of the American variety could only be found at Kadena or Naha. some of the people I was stationed with: @nd Lt thomas O’roark, Ellis Casner, Jim Stroud, Bill Cody. Bill Zango and Harold Lloyd. Give me a hollar. Jim Carter
Thanks for your comment, Jim. When my dad went to Okinawa, my Mom couldn’t come with him. However, something must have changed on the accompanied tours rule because I was born Aug 1960 which was 9 months after my Mom arrived in Okinawa. They didn’t waste any time!! Anyway, both myself and my brother were born there pretty much back to back!
I am looking for any information someone might have on Airman Ralph Edward Dolan. I am helping his family retrace his time in service. I have his records but his time on Onno is really fuzzy. He told stories of being on a secret mission into Vietnam where his plane was shot down.
Can anyone help clear this up?
spent time at Onna Point 6927RSM from March 1961 to August 62.We had a DF sight called Hanza Site that I worked at with the MIO’s from Onna point. I remember one Typhoon we had to hold on to a rope to get to the compound to work. I enjoyed my time there.
Early ’62 to late ’63 – I was an Onna Point Ditty Bopper for about a year, then was transferred to the Yamitan Naval Security Group at Hanza, for work at a new Wullenweber super high-gain R.D.F. antenna system, representing the Air Force. Was initially housed at the Torii Station Naval base barracks, but later moved to Kadena A.F.B. I was part of the 2T program and was reassigned to Karamursel Turkey (TUSLOG). Can’t remember anyone at the 6927th RSM but a guy named ‘Curley’. Although remote, had lotsa fun in off-duty night clubs at ’4-corners’, though sometimes I had to drive the Shuttle bus, which limited the ‘fun’ part. Also remember N.C.O. Academy at Goodfellow A.F.B. San Angelo TX. After discharge was recruited by the C.I.A. Langley, then Miami Beach. Also worked in the Pentagon (Army Stratcom). Now retired after 44 years with N.A.S.A. at Houston M.C.C.
RE: Terry Sloan
I remember the Typhoon & the rope used to transgress between barracks at Kadena.
Can’t remember you, but we had to work together at sometime.
I remember another Typhoon in which I had to sleep on the hard floor at the Hanza site while on-duty & got a tooth ache! (bad timing)
Fred Calderone: That name rings a bell with me. I was wrong on my dates, They should have been March of 62 to sept. of 63. Fred I’m picturing you as kind of thin and lanky.Did you know Brian Orzek? I ended up at Selfridge AFB, Michigan at the 94th Fighter Interceptor Squadron till discharge in 1965.
I WAS DEFINITELY THE SKINNY/LANKY CHARACTER YOU DESCRIBED. I BELIEVE BRIAN WAS IN MY BARRACKS AT KADENA, AND WE WERE PALS FOR AWHILE. I THINK I WAS THE ONLY ONE IN MY BARRACKS WHO HAD A TV SET IN MY ROOM.
BTW – I SHIPPED THE TV TO CALIFORNIA AND IT ARRIVED UPSIDE DOWN & BROKE!
HOPE EVERYTHING IS FINE WITH YOU & THE REST OF THE SQUADRON. WE HAD SOME GOOD TIMES AT THE RADIO SQUADRON MOBILE!!!
first time on this site. I am interested on a request dated sept 2011 regarding Ralph E. Dolan. I was at Onna july 59 till feb 61. during may 60 till july 60 i too was on a secret mission two of missions were in North Vietnam. When was Ralph there? I was a diddy bop.
I ARRIVED AT ONNA POINT IN EARLY MARCH OF 1959 COMING IN FROM KEESLER AFB,BILOXI, MS. I DID AN 18 TOUR AS A DIT-DAH-DIT GUY AND IT WAS ME THAT TOOK OVER JIMMIE CARTERS POSITION WITH 2 R-390′S AND 2 SP-600 SETS AND TWO SETS OF “SPLIT-HEADPHONES” WHICH WAS THE BIZZY BIZZY OF ALL BIZZY NETWORKS TO HAVE TO COPY DATA CALLED THE “VDB” NET. I WAS JUST DRIFTING DOWN THIS SITE AND SAW WHERE JIMMY “D” CARTER HAD POSTED HIS TIME AND SEVERAL NAMES THAT I KNEW IT WAS THE LITTLE OLE “MOON-BEAM CATCHER” HIMSELF. I HOPE THAT YOU READ THIS “JD” AND CONTACT ME.
(( PHILHILTON@COMCAST.NET ))
YOU DESCRIBED ONNA RIGHT DOWN TO THE DOT, NEVER MENTIONING THE VOA STATION ON THE MT UP BEHIND US, “PA-PA SANS HUT” THAT WE HAD TO WALK THE RICE FIELD LEVIES IN NTHE PITCH DARK NIGHTS AFTER KNOCKING OFF 4 BOTTLES OF HIS BEST “SAKE3″ NOR THAT WILD AND CRAZY RIDE OUR “D” TRICK TOOK A SIX-BY AND TOURED THE WHOLE ISLAND ALL THE WAY AROUND ONE DAY. I KNOW THAT IN MY TIME THERE, WAS THE YEAR OF THE ULTIMATE “YEAR” OF TYPHOOON SEASON. I KNOW EVERY TIME WE HAD OFF IT WAS OUR TURN TO FILL SANDBAGS. HAVE YOU EVER HEARD ANYTHING OUT OF THE “YATES TWINS”, FRANK AND PAUL? THEY BOTH WENT TO FORMOSA AFTER “OKI” – THEY WERE FROM NORTH CAROLINA AND I WAS FROM SOUTH CAROLINA. WERE YOU THERE WHEN I THREW THAT JUNKY ROYAL TYPEWRITER OVER THE TOP OF THE CONSOLE AND SMASHED IT ON THE WALL AFTER I USED THE ROLLER TO BEAT THE KEYBOPARD TO PIECES. THEN OUR ONE AND ONLY TYPEWRITER REPAIRMAN “TINY” CAME IN AND SAW IT, AN CRACKED UP. NEEDLESS TO SAY IT COST ME $85.00 FOR A NEW ONE AND ALMOST GOT ME AN ARTICLE 15. I THINK ONE OF THE BEST DAYS FOR ME WAS THE DAY I WAS TO LEAVE TO GO CATCH MY PLANE, WE WERE IN THAT CUTE LITTLE “AIRMAN’S CLUB” THAT HAD TWO SLOT MACHINES IN IT AND I PUT A QUARTER IN IT AS I WAS LEAVING AND DAMN IF I DIDN’T HIT THE JACKPOT. REMEMBER THE “SHORT-TIMER” RIBBONS WERE GOT TO WEAR ON OUR CAPS IN OUR LAST 30 DAYS BEFORE LEAVING? IT WAS THAT BLACK & YELLOW RIBBON FROM THE BOTTLE OF BOURBON WE WOULD FINISH OFF AND BE AWARDED THAT BEAUTIFUL LITTLE AWARD. TAKE CARE MY FRIEND AND I NEVER HAVE FORGOTTEN YOU. I WAS HEAVY SET GUY AND TAUGHT LEATHERCRAFT TO MAKE EXTRA MONEY WHEN THEY BUILT THE HOBBY SHOP. NEVER WAS WORTH A TOOT IN THAT 4 LANE BOWLING ALLY. MY BUNK WAS IN THE BUILDING DIRECTLY OVER THE MESS HALL. NAMES THAT I REMEMBER AS WELL AS YOURS WAS “RICE”, CRAWFORD,AND STROUD. REMEMBER CRAWFORD AND HIS PARTNER SAT SIDE BY SIDE AT THE CONSOLES AND WOULD HAVE THEIR “CRAB RACES”…. THEY WERE NUTZO FOR SHURE. I CAN’T REMEMBER THE BIG GUY FROM CANADA, A BIG KANOOK DUDE….. ALMOST FORGOT, REMEMBER WHEN WE USED TO HAVE TO STAND IN THE HOT SUN WAITING IN LINE TO BE HANDED OUR PAYCHECKS? WELL IN THE NEXT 1st SGT’s MONTHLY MEETING AFTER FINISHING HIS TALK, HE ASKED IF ANYONE HAD TO SAY AND YOU KNOW ME, I JUMPED UP AND START CUSSING LIKE A SAILOR USING SOME BAD, VERY BAD,LANGUAGE AND HE JUST LET ME RAMBLE ON ABOUT HAVING THAT PAYLINE OUT IN THE SUN EVERY TIME AND THEN HE ASKED ME IF I WAS FINISHED AND I SAID YES AND SAT DOWN. HE DIRECTLY POINTED HIS FINGER @ME AND TOLD ME TO BE IN HIS OFFICE AS SOON AS THE MEETING WAS OVER. LUCKY FOR ME I JUST GOT AN UNPLESANT ASK-CHEWING. REMEMBER THE THEATER THEY BUILT AND THE NEW HDQUARTERS BLG RIGHT ACROSS THE STREET FROM THE MESS HALL!REGARDS-”PHIL” HILTON
I FORGOT A MAJOR TRAGEDY THAT HAPPENED ONE DAY ABOUT 2:00PM IN THE AFTERNOON AND WE WERE RIDING THE BUS BACK TO ONNA POINT AND LOOKED UP TO SEE WHAT THAT BIG ROARING NOISE WAS THAT HAD JUST WENT ACROSS THE TOP OF THE BUS, AND IT WAS TWO OF THE F-101′S FLYING OUT OF KADENA ON THEIR FIRST FLIGHT AFTER ENGINE REPLACEMENTS IN BOTH OF THEM AND ONE LOST ALL POWER AND HYDRAULICS AND COULD NOT CONTROL THE DIRECTION OF HIS JET AND IT TOOK A BIG LEFT TURN AND ROLLED RIGHT TOWARD THE SMALL VILLAGE ON THE PACIFIC SIDE AND CRASHED INTO THE EDGE OF THE VILLAGE AND BURST INTO A GIANT FIREBALL AND IT HIT THE SCHOOL HUT KILLING 23 IN ALL AS IT ROLLED ALL THE WAY THROUGH THE VILLAGE. THE ENGINE WAS RECOVERED ABOUT 300 YARDS OUT IN A RICE PADDY. WE HAD THE BUS DRIVER BACK THE BUS UP SINCE IT WAS RIGHT AT THAT “Y” INTERSECTION WHICH WAS THE MOST NARROW POINT ON THE ISLAND AND DROVE AS FAR AS WE COULD AVOIDING ANY FUTURE DANGER AND ALL OF GOT OFF AND RAN DOWN INTO THE AREAS WE COULD GET TO TO HELP THOSE THAT WERE ON FIRE AND THOSE THAT WERE STRANDED. WE WERE LUCKY THAT 4 FIRE TRUCKS CAME FROM KADENA AND 2 FROM NAHA AND 3 FROM ISIHIKAWA (MARINE BASE) JUST SOUTH OF THE VILLAGE. THE 3rd MARINE DIVISION OVER ON THE CHINA SEA SIDE ON THE WAY TO OUR SITE DID NOT HAVE BUT ONE SMALL FIRE TRUCK AND ABOUT 3 AMBULANCES, I THINK IN ALL THERE MUST HAVE BEEN AT LEAST TWO DOZEN EMERGENCY VEHICLES AT THE SIGHT. THE OTHER JET MANAGED TO AIM HIS JET OUT OVER THE PACIFIC SIDE AND EJECTED, WHY HEW DID THAT WE NEVER FOUND OUT, BUT IT WAS SOMETHING TO DO WITH BOTH ENGINES THAT HAD ARRIVED ON A SHIP AND TAKEN TO THE KADENA BASE FOR INSTALLATION. I HAD THE NEWSPAPER PAGES SAVED FOR THE LONGEST TIME AND NOW THEY ARE LOST.
Looking through the notes, I see I am still the earliest arrival for duty(May 28th 1957thru Dec 15th,1958. Anyone out their that was aboard during those dates? Loved the beautiful landscape in onna point area. Reminded me of farm landscape on a much smaller scale, but beautiful and green. Just finished reading “With The Old Breed”, written by E.B. Sledge. The battle of Okinawa thru the eyes of a marine . I visited the south battle ground around Shuri castle. Makes me still feel fortunate I was born 10 years later than these brave men who served and died. Any of you out there that fit into my duty time, shout out. Would enjoy your contact.
Lo and behold, I just found Al Lyons comment posted in 2010. Al, I am out here, still in my same hometown, Indianola, Ia. If you see this, give me a note. I still remember your texas draw, and our other bunk mates, like Heslop, Carter, Jim Cronan, Staff S. Jones, and our MasterS Newman, a likeable boss. I kept a daily diary of all four years in a service, and daily events. Just put the books away sometime ago, but may have to find them, one for each year in the service. My its something, this internet. Never could have immagined such a communication vehicle 55 years ago.
Alfred Lyons attention. I don’t quite understand how your able to contact one another when the e-mail address won’t show up on the page.I guess for privacy. Or maybe I just don’t get it. Anyway here is my phone 515-961-4060
I was stationed at Onna Point from Feb 1959 ~ August 1960. I have been browsing this 6927 RSM site and saw where Phil Hilton had included an inquiry in his posting about Frank and Paul Yates. I was friends with both and regret to inform you that both passed away several years ago. I don’t know the details of their deaths but thought you would like to know the sad news. Also, in case you don’t know there’s a 6927 RSM unit site on the internet with loads of information about Onna and the people we served with there. Regards. Live long and prosper.
I was on Dog Flight at Onna Point from approx 1Oct1964 until 29March1966. We were in room 300, upstairs over the BX and snack bar. Actually we werent directly over the snack bar because our TV room was over the snack bar. If you stepped from the TV room, through a door, then into the corridor, we were in the first room on the right. My first room mates were Robert Lipscomb (known as slack or slack-slack) and Robert K Adams. I could not have asked for better room mates. I cant for the life of me remember who replaced Lipscomb as a room mate and cannot remember who replaced R K Adams when he left in late 1965. Maybe Dave Harthcock but I am guessing.
Lipscomb was from Pennsylvania and R K Adams was from Raleigh, NorthCarolina.
Arrived @ Onna Point in June of 1961 and left in Dec of 1962.
I was at onna point 7-59 till 1-31-61. In May 1960 until mid July 1960 I was on a top secret mission, where we headquartered in Bangkok under civilian visa. I need help of anyone else having knowledge of such missions.
Just happened upon this site today. Lots of memories rekindled. Served in USAF June 8, 1961 to June 7, 1965. Five weeks at Lackland, then to Keesler AFB, Biloxi, Ms in July ’61 to February ’62. To Onna Point, Okinawa March 1962 to September 1963. Was in Baker Flight. Then to Davis-Monthan AFB, Tucson, AZ for twenty-two months until discharge.
Saw that Robert Christman had posted here on March 13, 2011. He was in my unit. Hope to find others.
Just read a couple of comments about those who served at Ona Point at the same time that I did. Those comments were from Jimmy Carter and Smokey Stover. I was there from Dec. 59 through June 60. Strange but just yesterday I connected with an old service buddy that was there with me, his name was Walt Fadness. I don’t recollect your names but I do remember the Yates brothers as we played a lot of cards together and lived in the same barracks (the one with the cafeteria and post office). Good to hear that you are still alive and kickin.
Dates of service at Ona Point were Dec 59 thru June 61, not june 60. Walt and I were in Crypto/teletype.
I was at Onna from Dec. 58 to June 60. I was a crypto/teletype opr. (29151)that worked in the closed room across from the radio oprs. I reember the jet crash that Phil Hilton mentioned. I just recently made contact with my good friend, Walt Fadness who served the same tour as me.
Both of us then were assigned to the pentagon at Fort Myer and worked at Arlington Hall Station. Discharged from Ft. Meade in June 62.
Bill,I must have known you at Onna Point. I worked behind that same green door during the same time you were there. I was an E-4/E5, my Trick Chief was TSgt Thomas Pridgen. Most of the troops I worked with have escaped my memory bank but may return later. I’ll look in the 6927th personnel listing and see if any names oome to mind. Thanks for your posting.
I’m hoping this group is the correct time period. Does anyone remember John Donnelly? He was stationed there from Oct 1959 through Mar 1961. Also Haold Jones? Looking for some old photos.
The time period matches my time at Onna Point, but I don’t recall either of the names. Sorry.
In 1961/62 I was at 6927th RIM Onna Point,Okinawa and was reassigned to a special unit in Bangkok,Thailand that had me wearing civilian clothes and wearing a U,S, Radio manufactures identification badge. Our mission was to help the other Airmen/Soldiers from TAiwan train Thai military.
-Served as an analyst largely in Able flight from March 1963 until September or so in 64. At near 18 when I arrived, others took me under their wings but I can’t remember their names. Recalling the building of a trap range, a typhoon, trying the Marine obstacle course on a bet between officers, and an anticipated tsunami with the Alaska quake. Other vivid memories of viewing the scenery through a camera.
James Smokey Stover: I believe my dad was a TSgt Thomas Pridgen. We were in Okinawa during that time period. He retired to San Antonio, TX
Would love to hear from anyone who knew him.
Hi Susan. Just read your post on 6927 RSM, Onna Point Okinawa. Yes, I remember Tom very well. I was also stationed with your Dad at Ashiya AB
Japan in the mid nineteen sixties. He was my shift supervisor at both assignments. We were in touch for a while via e-mail at his San Antonio address. I haven’t been in contact with him for some time. Please pass on my e-mail address on to him and ask him to send me an update. Thanks.
HI STOVER. IAM POSTING THIS RAY. WE REMEMBER YOU 6927TH. RAY WAS A T/SGT AND WORKED IN THE COMM CENTER.WE TALK TO TOM ESTHER PRIDGEN ABOUT 2 YEARS AGO. HAVE NOT BE ABLE TO GET AHOLD THEM SINCE. HOPE YOU REMEMBER US. I MET YOU, LEES,RED LOGAN CLEGG. DACREAMA, NORMAN TRACEY AND A FEW OTHER. RAY GETTING CRMS. HOPE TO HEAR FROM YOU MARION THIBODAUX. I WAS A VERY YOUNG WIFE AT THE TIME RAY USE TO TELL DO NOT TALK TO THE AIRMEN AND SMILE. AFTER ALL I WAS THIER AGE
Thanks for your posting. Of course I remember you guys. Funny about Ray telling you to avoid the young airmen (I was one of them – 23 at the time and single) I haven’t spoken with Tom in a couple of years. I tried today with the last tel nrbr I had for him (210)641-8256. The nrbr is active but no answer or message service. I’ll try again later today and hopefully make contact. I’ll let you know on this post site if I’m successful contacting Tom Also, my e-mail is email@example.com if you want to reach me that way. Regards to Ray.
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