salmon.gif (6026 bytes)The Great 79th Seabee Salmon Sneak

    A 79th Battalion veteran of Company "A" relates watching bears catching fish during the salmon runs while the 79th Battalion was on their first tour of duty in the Aleutians campaign.  During this tour, several 79'ers built smoke houses and smoked the salmon.  Unable to disclose the Battalion's location in their letters home to family and friends, a scheme was devised to mail packages of smoked salmon as a clue to their loved ones.

    Seabees were famous for their professional construction skills prior to the beginning of the war.  One particular 79'er noted that he could use his 1/4-inch drill when he returned home on Leave.   Purposely waiting until he figured the Postman was fed up with mailing salmon, the Battalion ready to depart the tour, and finally hearing the Postman express a disgusted  exclamation "Don't bring another one in here!!",  the 79th 'Bee slapped a salmon on top of the drill to avoid detection, wrapped it up in a package, and mailed it home.  And, yes, the drill was awaiting him when he arrived home for his Leave.

    The sketch to the right appears in the 79th Naval Construction Battalion Cruise Book,  designed and published while the Battalion was on duty in the Aleutians, 10 May 1943 -  Fall 1944.




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