The Lisco Locker

When you left CIC via the aft hatch, you went down a passageway that ended up at a hatch that led to the port side weather deck on the O1 level.  On the way there you passed the Sonar room, a head, an office space used by the Quartermasters and a compartment we called the “Lisco Locker”.  I think it got the name because RD3 Ken Lisco was assigned a collateral duty to take care of in there.  The space had several file cabinets in there as well as a tall metal cabinet with supplies stored in it.  On that same wall as that cabinet there was a metal wall cubby hole system.  People kept personal gear in there like books, magazines, toys, food etc.  I’m guessing this room was approximately 10×16 feet.

Secret Control Safe

I painted the Cobalt 60 character on the "Secret Control" safe. Art originally by famous underground comic artist, Vaughn Bode.

Sometime before our first Westpac I was assigned the collateral duty of the ships Secret Control Librarian.  In the Lisco Locker was a refrigerator sized steel safe with a combination lock where I was to keep all secret documents and publications for the ship.  When someone (usually an officer) needed something from there they would have to check it out, so it’s location could be tracked.  I kept a card file in the safe for my check-in/check-out system.  Often I would receive errata and addendum’s to documents that needed to be made from various government and military agencies.  I had to effect these changes usually by just cutting out the new information with scissors and taping or pasting at the proper place in the original document.  Sometimes it was as simple as an updated frequency range for a Chinese radar system or it may be a series of fuzzy black and white Soviet submarine photos furnished by CIA or other international or NATO organizations.  There was a lot of interesting reading on a mid-watch or sleepless night.  This safe is where I also stowed my cache of crackers, canned meat, cheeses, candy, etc.  Just about the safest place on board!

This room also had a workbench along one end of it where we had a stereo system and speakers mounted above it.  I remember taking a couple of naps on that workbench.  Between the first and second Westpac cruise, the radar gang pitched in and bought a small refrigerator that just fit at the end of the workbench.  We kept it crammed with soft drinks.  Sometimes when on watch, you would leave CIC to go get something from the Lisco Locker, walk in, flip on the lights and there would be someone napping with the stereo blasting Deep Purple, Led Zeppelin or something.  Other times it was a place to write letters, read or just to “shoot the shit” with someone.  Sort of a radarman’s private lounge, nice.

12 Responses to The Lisco Locker

  1. Bobby (Stubby) Daniel says:

    I believe this room was meant to be the DASH helicopeter pilots stateroom. On most of the Knox Class ships it ended up being full of electronic equipment.

    • Oh yeah, I’d forgotten it’s original intended use. They must have decided against the DASH thing well before the commissioning in 1970. When the Frannie H came into Portland (Rose Festival Fleet) in the early ’90’s I went aboard and got a tour. We went by the “Lisco Locker” on the way to CIC, but the door was closed. Something about that whole passageway had changed by then, but don’t remember the details now. BTW, when I went aboard and crossed the quarter-deck, I showed them my “Plank Owners” certificate. They were impressed and I got the “Rock-Star” treatment! Pretty cool.

  2. Jeff Zavada says:

    Don’t forget the whore monger book and the medal that went with it.

  3. Jeff Zavada says:

    I want to add, today I heard from Roger White. I person I have been looking for for sometime, and now this web site, which id=s really good DC. Hey DC. I still have two copies of John Jupiter Bloomers in my cruise book. If you don’t have any, let me know you can have mine.

  4. I’ve wondered about Roger over the years. I think he was from Bozeman, Montana. When stationed in Long Beach he and I were sent to a week long course in Electronic Warfare or maybe it was Anti-Air Warfare in San Diego. Anyway, we commuted every single night back to Long Beach. I had an apartment there with my wife and I don’t remember why Roger wanted to do that commute. If I recall he had a little MG and we had some great drives up and down I-5 for the 100 mile trip.

  5. Scott Gillespie says:

    Marv said you had a pretty slick blog. He was right, you have a DANG slick blog.

    In 1979?, I ran into a fella that was a Sonarman on FH after I had left the ship. He didn’t know any of the fellas I did, but he sure did remember Cobalt 60. I guess with Sonar being right across the passageway from the Lisco Locker, he was hard to miss. As I recall this Sonarman was a little mystified by old Cobalt. I still have the Cobalt 60 patch we had made in Koahsiung.

    • Glad you found the blog Scotty! Yep, I too still have all the patches we had made in Kaohsiung. In fact, my intentions have been to write a “Liberty Call: Taiwan” much like I did the “Liberty Call: Olongapo”. It would be more photos than writing since the memories there are not the same as Olongapo. I’m amazed at how much traffic that Olongapo article gets. Lots of us looking to go down memory lane, I guess. 😉

  6. Stubby says:

    I thought I would find you two in here hiding out. Up to something probably. Can you believe it’s been 40 years? Scotty, really good to hear from you and Marv.
    Dennis, do you remember me falling asleep in the left (port) captain’s chair on the bridge on watch before I left?
    I was just going to rest my feet and the next thing I knew the CDO, OOD, and MOW we’re waking me up.

    • No I don’t recall that incident, but there is one that I do. My lasting memory of you is when you had trench foot or something. I remember you sitting on a bottom bunk peeling loose skin off your feet. Ever find out what caused that?

      Helluva thing to remember a guy by, LOL.


  7. Stubby says:

    It was probably jungle rot (athletes foot) from not taking my shower shoes on liberty instead of all the cigarettes I could stuff in my socks. You don’t think it could have been a reaction to the MoJoe or Mo Josephine. LOL. I know I had to get a prescription for medicine to get it cured.

    I think the incident on watch was handled very quietly and stalled until after I left. It scared the hell out of me though I had just made RD2. Our CICO talked to me about it. I do not believe anyone else did. The Chief Engineer was the CDO. We were standing 2 or 3 watches on duty days. I don’t even remember which port we were in . Man, I haven’t sleep good since. Wish I could have documented it into my medical record. Gold bricking wasn’t allowed back then. Wooden ships and iron men (or was it aluminum). After I left the boat I never got to stand Asroc Security watch. Only weapons guys stood them. I was back on the Quarterdeck. Loved to swap with guys who had Shore Patrol.

  8. Stubby says:

    Scotty, I remember you being into Mason Williams during the cruise. A line in particular about not seeing any empty Tabasco sauce bottles. You were always in a good mood. Wish you and Dennis could have put a copy of the letter you sent to Kellogg’s in the cruisebook. The letter stated how eating a bowl full of Kellogg’s raisin brand each morning gave us energy to bag a few commies after breakfast. There was something else in it about how the cooks could not screw it up.

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