Glenn Madden


  Personal Stuff



In The Navy

I got an inspiring feeling in my heart one day when I looked at my boss whom drank heavily. He had a good job and family but was not happy. I suddenly felt that I had to change my life before I ended up like him. That is when I convinced tiffany to let me go into the navy so I might pursue my desire to be in electronics. Here we will show how that journey took us from Pensacola Florida to Groton Connecticut, with short trips to New York City and Canada. We had a beautiful daughter whom was born in Pensacola navy hospital. Then back again to managing a grocery store.

I signed up for the navy. I talked to Bilo and so they put me on military leave of absence but I had no intention of returning. I had arranged with the recruiter to work on a type of diesel submarine that would go out to sea on short runs. I had to go first to get basic training, which meant 8 weeks separation from Tiffany. She agreed to stay with her family while I was doing this. They sent me to Orlando Florida for training. This was in October. Basic training was like vacation. The unusual spring like weather for me in Florida made it like vacation. It was very different than basic training in the army. We just went to school every day and had evenings free. Finally graduation came and my mom and Tiffany were there. Tiffany was so big with the baby she could hardly walk and was miserable. After graduation they let us go out with our families for a couple of days. I took them to Disney world and we had a good two days. I had to go back to the base and get ready for my transfer to Pensacola where I would attend a 1-year school in electronics. I reached my training station and as I was going through the paper work I arranged with them to let me live off base with my wife. I set up an apartment and a week later Tiffany was there.

Pensacola was a beautiful place. We made many trips on the weekends to the beach. One day the chief called me in and said I needed to go to the hospital that Tiffany was having the baby. We had a beautiful 13 pound little girl whom we named Jessica after Tiffany's grandfather Jessy. Tiffany bought a snake at a local pet store. Somehow the apartment management found out and said we had to move. They said pets were not allowed. I found a new apartment that was much nicer anyway. Right after we moved the old apartment we were living in caught fire and burned completely to the ground. I bought a motorcycle from my brother Tim and my dad and him brought it to Pensacola on the back of the truck. They were only there a few days so one day we had a cook out. It started raining right after we finished grilling hamburgers. I thought it would be Ok to pour the hot charcoals in the dumpster. I did not notice that the dumpster had a lid so the rain was not getting inside. I went back into the apartment and we were watching TV and just relaxing. About thirty minutes later we heard fire trucks. Looking out the window we saw that the dumpster was ablaze. It was far enough away from the apartment that it did not hurt anything but the dumpster itself. Luckily no one knew it was me that had done this.

After about one year I was scheduled to go to Groton Connecticut to complete my training in my submarine basics. The navy sent a moving company to the house and packed everything for us. All we would have to do is call them once we got an apartment in Connecticut and they would deliver it. We packed our bags and headed to Connecticut. I had 30 days leave so we made a stop in South Carolina and visited family. Then we headed off again to Connecticut. On the way we decided to spend one night in New York City. We got off of the interstate and I remember a sign that said welcome to the Bronx. It was night and I got a little scared. You know all of the horror stories you hear about New York. I saw cars lined up along the sides of the streets completely stripped; it looked like one of those futuristic movie sets. We finally found a hotel over in New Jersey. It stunk of something nasty but it was a place to sleep. The next day we did some site seeing and I got my first experience of driving in the BIG city. I was so surprised to be driving down the street and finding cars triple parked. We continued the next day onto Connecticut. We got a newspaper and started looking for an apartment. We found a house that had been converted to an apartment in our price range. This was in December so there was a lot of snow. The apartment used steam for heating and only had one thermostat for the whole building, which was located in our small apartment. We set the controls comfortably but it only took a few days we got a complaint that the rest of the apartment building was cold. We had to turn up the heat and open the windows.

One day a couple of my friends asked if we could take them up to an airport in Rhode Island. I agreed. That night on the way back to Connecticut we crashed the car. It was an 11-car pile up because of ice on the road. We were number 11. The police officer took down the details and called a tow truck. We got a taxi to take us back to Connecticut.

I found out that next day that we were responsible according to Rhode Island state law for all 11 cars since we were last in line. I had no insurance except for my car. It took a few weeks of riding buses to the base to get my car back. I started getting letters from the other ten insurance companies wanting me to pay for the damage to the other cars. I just ignored them.
It came time for graduation. I was number 2 grade wise in a class of 14 students. The school used this to decide on who got what final assignments. The entire class was shown the orders available and then each student would pick his orders based on his standing in the class. There was only one set of orders going to an SSBN, which had a regular schedule and the rest were fast attack submarines, which had no schedule. The man ahead of me wanted these orders so he was going to choose them. I told him I would pay him $100 to choose other wise. Well the man next to us said he would pay $200 for the same orders. This got into a bidding war, which the instructor ended very quickly. I ended up having to take the fast attack orders.
I could not see leading a family life with an unpredictable schedule that might take me away for more than a year at a time. I went and talked with the chaplain and told him how I had been told it would be easy to get a diesel submarine in the beginning. I told him I could not take the stress of unpredictable family separation. The next day I was scheduled to meet with the people that handled all of the paper work. They told me that I had two choices. I could get out of the navy are go to the surface fleet. I did not think that the surface fleet was much better and I had what I enlisted for anyway so I opted for the get out of the navy with an honorable discharge.


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