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Iraklion AS, Crete, Greece

I have quite a bit of memories from this island in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea. If my dates are correct (probably not), we lived there sometime around 1967 to 1969.  We lived off-base near a woodshop and a bakery. I would walk every evening to the bakery and get a fresh loaf of Greek bread for dinner. I remember a dancing bear that would come by. His Greek handler would have him dance while he played the tambourine. When finished, my dad would “tip” him with a couple packs of American cigarettes (Marlboros!). There was a Greek family that loved to come over and watch Gunsmoke on our American TV. I especially remember that my dad, who loved sports growing up, started the first youth baseball league on Crete. Instead of the Commander (Col. Louie Miller, Jr.) throwing out the first pitch to a catcher, he threw it into the middle of all us boys gathered together. I came up with the ball and it sits on desk to this day. You can see it here:

Baseball photos


206 comments for “Iraklion AS, Crete, Greece”

  1. I was a 291 assigned to the 1950th
    AACS Sq Wheelus AB, Libya from May of 56 until Oct of 57. I, along with several of my fellow trainees at Sampson AFB (Flight 4599) were sent to F.E. Warren AFB, Wy for Comm Center training. For some reason I was selected for the “short” course (12 weeks) and was informed I was to go on to Scott AFB for crypto ops training. That did not materialize though as I along with others were suddenly sent to Wheelus as 291s. Several of my former basic training buddies had the 16 week 291 course and were placed in a different squadron than me. Upon graduation they attended crypto ops school at Scott AFB. I met them later in the summer of 1956 when they passed through Wheelus on their way to Crete. I recall the names of Lambert and O’Neil as being in that group. Does anyone recall them at Crete in 1956 – 1957? My B.I. clearance came through while at Wheelus and I began working as a 292 as well as a 291. I rotated back to Havre AFS in MT where I separated from active duty and began a long and lengthy career with the federal government based on my background in the USAF. Incidentially Lambert and O’Neil were both from NY state.

    Posted by James "Jim" Muse | December 9, 2017, 8:37 am
  2. I was stationed as an Intercept Radio Operator (USAFSS)
    in Tripoli (Libya) from 10/54 to 3/55, then transferred to the 6938th RSM in Iraklion, Crete from 3/55 to 11/55.
    From there back to March AFB until discharged as
    S/Sgt. in September, 1957.

    Would like to hear from anyone who was stationed
    at any of those bases at the above-mentioned times….

    F. Sano
    San Clemente, CA

    Posted by Frank P.Sano | December 9, 2017, 1:14 pm
  3. Hello Frank
    We have talked previously, just saw
    your name and thought I would say “hello” and Merry Christmas. Hope all
    is well with you and yours. Crete was
    a long time ago but still have good
    memories as I am sure you do as well.



    Posted by Roger Camann | December 9, 2017, 2:53 pm
  4. Yes, Roger, it was a long time ago. About 62 years, but
    I remember it well. Great bunch of Airmen to work with and I sure would like to hear from any of them. The deserted base does not look like anything it was when I was there – very small indeed with spartan working and living areas.

    The code has never left me…….!

    San Clemente

    Posted by Frank P.Sano | December 9, 2017, 5:35 pm
  5. USAF – 1953-1957. Intercept Radio Operator & Later
    Cryptographic Operations. Stationed in Tripoli, Libya, then on to Iraklion, Crete in 1955 – Base only open
    about one year – Very Small. Left Crete in fall of 1956.
    Anybody out there serving at that time?

    Posted by Frank Sano | January 13, 2018, 7:06 pm
  6. I was stationed at Wheelus from 1956 through 1957. TTY/Crypto operations. Had some friends who were at Crete at that time. Names Lambert and O’Neil familiar to you? They were crypto ops as well.

    Posted by Jim Muse | January 13, 2018, 9:24 pm

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