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Received December 2004,
 
Joe,

Thanks for your web site. You did a great job and provided a great service for 
us “old guys” who are thinking about our past. Thanks for all of the work you put 
into the site.


The pictures and comments brought back so many memories. I was supply officer at H-3 from 
January 67 to December 67. My fondest memories of H-3 are of the exceptional men stationed 
there. Considering the isolation it seems in retrospect surprising how good the morale was. 
You have to credit the character of the men stationed there for that. We all would rather 
have been at home with our families but we knew we had a job to do, and we did it. 
We complained, we weren't happy, but we did our duty, and our year.


When I tell people that I spent a year in Iceland they usually give me a strange look. 
Their first question usually is something like “Why did you do that?” My reply is something 
like “defending my country.” That usually brings “From who?” I once used the fact that I 
lived in Iceland for a year in an “ice breaker session” at a business conference to say 
something really unusual about my past. It certainly generated a lot of follow up questions 
and some awe. It is a story hard to top. After a few drinks I have been known to say, in 
total truth, that my choices were Iceland or prison, I chose Iceland. It could have been a 
lot worst. As we all recall, many of our Air Force friends went to Vietnam while we went to 
Iceland. We were a lot colder but also a lot safer, and we knew it.


Did you ever see the cage and straightjacket? I remember hearing stories about it and maybe 
I even saw it. It's hard to separate fact from fiction 37 years later. The story goes something 
like this: When new guys arrived on the plane sometimes they saw the pickup truck pull up to the 
plane to be unloaded. In the back of the pickup there was a metal cage, welded out of concrete 
reinforcing rods, and a guy in a straightjacket, acting wild, in the cage. The new guys were 
told that some guys just couldn't take it at H-3 and had to be sent out in a straightjacket to 
the funny farm. What a welcome! I am thankful that I didn't see it on my trip in. That story 
reminds me of my bleakest memories at H-3, my first few days. A year seemed SO long ... Then, 
there was a DROS party and I saw that others lived through so I knew I could too. Then there 
were more DROS parties and after a “life time” came my DROS party.

Do you remember the monthly arrival of the Paymaster? Often he was an officer form H-1 out 
for a visit. He carried a box full of $20 bills. A significant amount of the payroll went 
out on the next flight as registered mail back to the Post Office at Keflavik to cover all 
of the postal money orders. One of the Medics was our Postmaster. He sure got a work out 
on payday. As I recall, he had to have one adding machine tape, without any mistakes, 
reflecting every money order with exact dollar amount, in numerical sequence. Did you 
know that the NCO Club had to be our “bank” for small bills and change? We were paid in 
$20 bills plus only enough smaller bills to cover the exact amount of our check. As I 
recall during my time at H-3 the second Medic was NCO Club Leader or whatever they 
called the “manager.” So, the Medics managed all of the cash, and took care of our health too.


Some pictures are attached. If you would like them in another format let me know.

H3 mountain background - taken in 1966 by the Navy. I got it at Kef.

H3 ocean background – also taken in 1966 by the Navy. There is nothing like a professional picture.

Building layouts from 1967

Dining In 1967 - the people in the picture from the March 30, 1967, Dining In at the 667th 
from left to right are:

Chaplain Lamesters (Protestant Chaplin from Kevlavik), LTC Frank Scarino (667th CO mid 66 
to mid 67), Ed Mann (supply officer), Capt Cunningham (paymaster from H-1, I think), 
Admiral Stone (CO of IDF and our honored guest), Bob Bouldin, Frank Hurdon, a volunteer 
waiter (was there such a thing as a volunteer in the military?) The whole squadron and 
our navy companions were there too.

New Commander arrives – this is the arrival of LTC James Howard CO from mid 67 to mid 68, 
I assume. He signed my Bless Certificate, which I still have! From left to right Gene 
Ireland, I think, LTC Howard, and Ed Mann (that's me. Of course I didn't plan to be an 
AF lifer so I left for a meeting at Kef as the new CO was arriving. Nothing personal. It 
just worked out that way. Who would pass up a free trip to the big city?)

Trees – We all recall the lack of trees in our little corner of Iceland. Some of us went 
with an Icelandic family for an all day trip to a park, or whatever it was called, in the 
“9 passenger vehicle” to see trees. By a mid-westerner's standards they were pretty small 
to be called trees but they were all there was. Any excuse for a trip off site was welcome.

Joe, I'm sending 3 pictures in this message and will follow up with the last 3 pictures 
in a second email.

Ed Mann
[The pictures have been added in the appropriate pages on this web site.]  JP