Wednesday, January 21, 2009

NNPTC Orlando

Sign at entrance to Naval Training Center Orlando. Second sign
View of RTC


I believe this is the sidewalk leading to the Nuclear Power School. The A school would have been off to the right. I think this is where we all gathered when it was announced that Admiral Boorda had committed suicide.

Ok, THE McDonald's. Whenever we were dismissed early for lunch, this is where we would go. If not, it was off to the E-Club for some frozen pizza.
This is the front gate I used to drive through in my 1992 Ford Tempo.
View from what I believe is Lake Baldwin (correct me if I am wrong).
Boarded up guard house.
Chapel
Not sure what this building is, any ideas?
Bennet Boulevard
Bench
Bench at Lake Baldwin
Barracks? Not like any of the ones I stayed in.
Recruit graduation and below that a picture of the barracks. These are the type of barracks I stayed in from 1996-97. There were three single beds, so three girls per room. One bathroom. There were four units on each floor (12 girls total) with a shared common area which was never used.
Not too long ago I had the chance to go back to Orlando, Florida. I really wanted to see the old base (I had not been back since 1997). Driving down Colonial Boulevard, everything seemed familiar. The gas station I always went to was gone, but Fashion Square Mall was right where I left it. . . and then? Suburbia. NTC, NNTPC, everything is gone and replaced by houses and condos. It's so weird that a place that is so very clear in my memory is just that - a place in my memory and nowhere else anymore. Poof, gone, no more!

I started searching for pictures online and these are all I came up with. . . wish I had taken a few more pictures while I was there! I would love to see some pictures of when the base was still alive and thriving. Although I appreciated finding even these pictures, it was a little sad to see the guard house boarded up and a lonely deserted McDonald's. I prefer the way it was in my memory, alive and bustling, full of young sailors. Even so, when I was there from 1996-1997, the base was on it's way out. Only the Nuclear Power School, Officer's school and A schools were still open. The RTC had recently been closed - coming from a winter at Great Lakes RTC, I really wondered why the Orlando base had been chosen for closure.

Ok, so here are some of my memories of A School and Power School:

The E Club: This is where we all hung out and smoked (it seemed like everyone smoked back then). You could smoke indoors or out back on the patio. They had pizza that was pretty disgusting, but everyone bought. There was a pool area (of course), but I never played, just hung out on the patio with my friends.

The Barracks: When we first arrived, we were sent to this 7 story building with two wings. The females were on the seventh floor (west wing??). Females had just been allowed into the nuclear program so there weren't too many of us at this point. These barracks were set up just like boot camp (but nicer mattresses and storage areas) with bunk beds. We still had inspections every morning and could not wear civilian clothes during the week. We were here for . . . I want to say about six weeks? Then we moved into the three story barracks. These were set up like dorm rooms (but spacier than any dorm I ever had). More freedom here, could have our own blankets and pillows, but still subject to inspections.

There were these buildings where enlisted spouses stayed on the base. They were dark wood . . . durr, all I remember is we used to have to run past them at 5:30 a.m. in the morning when we had to run around the base TWICE. Then we would wind up back at the track and continue running until every one finished their two laps around the base.

A School: This was loooooong because I was an ET (class 9633T). They sold bagels every morning under the tent and I would always buy one (cherry or blueberry) with a packet of cream cheese. We spent a lot of time in A School between class and study hours.

Nuclear Power School: Even more time spent in here since you could take nothing out of the building to study. Fun times.

Galley: Oh they had the best omelets. Very greasy and you could have whatever you wanted. Lunch was usually at the E Club which was kind of stupid of me since the galley was free. Ah to be young and have disposable income again.
The NEX: This place was always busy. There was a breezeway/courtyard in the center with things like a travel place (this was a few years ahead of the internet and self-travel), a barber shop, dry cleaners/alterations and probably a few others. Also I used to use the pay phones here a lot (a few years ahead of cell phones as well) because it was always cool and breezy. I would buy these 60 minute phone cards and talk away. I was always buying something random at the NEX like lip gloss or nail polish - I always seemed to have a NEX bag in my hand. A lot of retired Navy personnel and spouses shopped here.

What else, what else? I don't know, this was just such a fun time. I mean, very difficult with school, but I still look back on it and smile. Maybe I am romanticizing it a bit too much, and maybe it is a time that I miss and not a place? Being 22 and having my whole life ahead of me - ah yes, good times!! Regardless, I wish it were still there, but maybe it is better this way - that I can remember it the way it was through my rose-colored glasses. Nostalgia!



If you have any photos you would like to share, I would love, love, love to see them. In particular the NEX (I wasted so much money at that place), the E Club (also wasted a lot of money on crappy pizza!), etc., but really any pictures would be great. Also please comment on any memories you have of the naval base in Orlando!

51 comments:

Taran said...

Hi - I wrote the KnowProSE.com post on NTC Orlando. The pics here really brought back some memories... I went through there about 6 years before you did.

And there were no females in NNPS... that would have been much more interesting. :-)

Good to read others are keeping the memories alive.

Shawn said...

I liked your pictures that you posted of the old Orlando Recruit Training Center. I am a Naval Civil Service Engineer out of D.C. and will be going back to Orlando for training and thought I would look for landmarks. I was there in '93 and once I left I never got to go back.

Thanks Again,

Shawn

scada said...

That building you had a question on was a dormitory it was 7 floors I think, but you were not allowed to use the elevator (of course, and no trash in the wastebasket!)

People that were in torpedoeman and other schools lived there. I lived there for a few days while waiting for A school to class up. Then for a few weeks in the roach motels while waiting for nuke school. This was in '89 when there was a bad cold spell and they did not give us blankets.

David K. said...

Hello,
That building you questioned looks just like the one I lived in while attending ET "A" school back in 1990. I have never gone back to Orlando NTC since then but now I am finding out that nice place is no longer. Everyone on the net attests to the great memories from here. Oh, the sadness that politicians (especially from places like Illinois) bring to the rest of us.

Michael (Shane) Tutwiler said...

Thanks so much for sharing your memories and pictures. I went through the "Pipeline" in 96-97 too, though I was a MM/ELT.

One thing I distinctly remember about the galley was the lady who normally served "sliders" (hamburgers)...she'd stand there and chant "All the way down, please. All the way down!" to keep the line moving!

Thanks again for sharing!

deecee said...

Thanks for all the pix good memories, i was there in 1983 June-July wish i had pix of my passing in review, i sang in the chorus doing hell week, take good care of self and ur fam .....

lou said...

RTC Orlando 89-1991 ...
I was there for C033 bootcamp and Nuke A and Nuke Power school... Best times I ever had with the greatest of friends. Loved Manatees, Foxhole, use to to travel to Daytona beach alot, go to Pleasure Island, Razzles, etc, etc.
My first day reporting to Nuke A school, I had a Foxhole plate on the front bumper of my 86 Firebird, and a garter on the rearview mirror, while parking in Capt Fages spot at the Quarterdeck... of course it was 2am..lol
We had great times... Wish RTC Orlando was still there..
It is a shame that the politicians let this one go... Heard it was shady land deal to boot...
Some of my friends were Ken Naff, Lionel Phelps, Hall, Joe, Alfred, ..Keith and Heather King... Heather while borrowing my car almost had the baby in the Firebird...lol...loved those spaghetti dinners with wine at the apt you and wife rented while Keith attended Power school...We all were young with little money but we had the best of friendships and the best of times...

God Bless,

lou

Jocelyn said...

I was there when you were there... who is this? I was also an ET. cannot remember class number etc...

lou said...

jocelyn,

hi.. are you referring to me... I was a MM... my friend Ken Naff was an ET... He also taught ET stuff so he stayed there a little extra time before transferring to prototype...

lou

lou said...

jocelyn,

hi.. are you referring to me... I was a MM... my friend Ken Naff was an ET... He also taught ET stuff so he stayed there a little extra time before transferring to prototype...

lou

tinman4tiger said...

Loved what pics you have. Brought back yesterdays of my Fall of 1987 RTC (K095) at Orlando and ATD School. Good ol days and a shame to have it stripped away into a subdivision.

MM3 Tim said...

Thanks for the pictures. Really brings back memories. I went through in 1987 (NPS class 8703 I think). Some of the Classmates I remember are Richard Anderson, Craig Wetstein, David Billington.

I went on to protoype training at
S1W in ID (class 8704). I recall the horrendous daily bus ride and the god aweful 12 hour shifts.

Hillary said...

I was there in 94-95...I was literally one of the first females back in the program!! I was an ET...graduated class 9448!! I had a blast there...we never stayed in the 7 story building, only the 3 story barracks! Definitely some great memories in that place!!

Philip said...

Wow! So many memories! I was soooo excited when I found this blog. Thank you for sharing! I was at RTC Orlando in the spring of 87. I had never traveled before so when I boarded the plane in February it was 22 deg. in Columbus Ohio. When I de-planed, in Orlando, it was almost 60 deg. FANTASTIC!!! I'm so sad that it is gone. Some of the BEST times of my life. Nuke "A" school was grueling, to say the least, but I wouldn't give up that time in my life for anything! Thanks for the memories.

Philip said...

By the way, I found a few more websites with some more photo shots of our old naval base. You may want to check these out!.....ENJOY!!

http://www.overall.org/NTC-Orlando/ntc.html
http://www.miltonmckinney.com/Travel/travel3/ntcorlando2.htm
http://company169.tripod.com/ntctour.htm

Ken said...

Goodness .. the memories
Marching across the Grinder
The U.S.S. Neversail
I hated that I shipped Christmas Eve 1985 but wouldn't trade any of it for the world.
I just can't believe that they turned it into Suburbia

JT said...

Power school class 9602...love the blog. I'm still in so we talk about O-town occasionally. I, too loved my time there. Church St, Disney, Wet n Wild military day, Daytona, the 3 pm rain everyday!

JT said...

Love the blog. Great memories. NNPS class 9602!

Eric said...

I think I was in EM A school at the same time as you, I graduated A school in Jan '97

Phil said...

Hey JT,

Oh Yes! Some of the most DRAMATIC storms that I have EVER witnessed were in Orlando! When the storms would come in they ordered us to drop flags or anything else (metal)and seek shelter IMMEDIATELY!

Phil

Phil said...

Hey JT,

Oh Yes! Some of the most DAMATIC storms that I have ever witnessed were in Orlando. When storms would roll in they would order us to drop flags or anything else (metal), that we were holding, and seek shelter IMMEDIATELY!

Phil

Phil said...

Sorry if some of my comments are double. I'm not real familiar with blogging.

Phil

Phil said...

Hey JT,

I have many fond memories of the Orlando base as well! A GREAT time in my life!!

Phil

Phil said...

Hey Eric,

I'm afraid I was in Orlando in
1987. But I'm sure your memories are as fond as mine!

Phil

bigicedog said...

wow i went in 1992 rtc company C074 i have so many good memories thanks for the pics

Truxtun35 said...

Born and raised in Orlando then RTC C160 July '69, GLakes BP&E + MM-A, NNPS Bainbridge 7002, A1W + ELT then USS Truxtun DLGN/CGN-35.
I remember the base from the old days when it was the OAFB. It is sad that most of the places I was stationed or ports visited are gone.

Banta said...

MM NNPS class 9607. I miss that place.

eric8 said...

I was there from 96 to 97 as well.....EM a school class 9649m. Great memories!

eric8 said...

I was there from 96 to 97 as well.....EM a school class 9649m. Great memories!

eric8 said...

I was there from 96 to 97 as well.....EM a school class 9649m. Great memories!

Doug said...

I feel you on the memories being erased. I would be heart broken if I went there today. I was class 9708, became MM-ELT. I went back in 2001 and it was a wasteland, so seeing condos now would result in a stroke, lol. Good job

Momof3 said...

I got to NNPTC in January of 97. Good times on the smoke pad at the E-club!

Tracy said...

Hi- My husband was in Orlando in 1991 for A and Power school. We had so many memories!....he is now retiring and I want to make him a shadow box and our pictures are not good, and I need pins and patches....any ideas?

tracy davidson

Donald Greist said...

Thanks for the site. I will send you any other pictures I come across. ET.

Donald Greist said...

Thanks for the post. Former NUC ET student.

R Settle said...

Thanks for posting the pictures. I had been looking on Google Maps for the old base, but couldn't find it. So, some more searching on google and I come across this blog. Imagine my surprise when I was reading along and saw "Class 9633t", huh? My jaw dropped when I was reading along and came across that bit... Gave the whole part about hanging out on the patio at the E-club a whole different spin.
I seem to remember riding in (borrowing for a week or so) that tempo you mentioned...

I was also in ET class 9633T. My wife and newborn son spent quite a lot of time on that patio you referred to. lol

Agent47 said...

I frequented that McDonald's with buddies from boot. I was trying to let a female recruit know i had a crush on her until she let us all know she was being kicked out on section 8. It was a true WTF moment.

Joshua Barbosa said...

RTC Orlando circa 1994 C033 Sr. Chief Petty Officer Caldwell. Nuke school. Great times at boot camp and at school there. Beautiful memories and great friends i.e., Adam Rice, Dan Yoswein remembering some funny times c/o Albert Switzer, Jeffrey Duncan. God bless :)

Tom said...

The picture which you question with this remark-"Barracks? Not like any of the ones I stayed in". If my memory serves right, at least one of buildings served as barracks for the Signalman A school attendees. I graduated Signalman A School in December 1985. Went to RTC across the street, company C220.

Tom said...

The picture which you question with this remark-"Barracks? Not like any of the ones I stayed in". If my memory serves right, at least one of buildings served as barracks for the Signalman A school attendees. I graduated Signalman A School in December 1985. Went to RTC across the street, company C220.

jhumphry said...

Hi, glad I found this post - I've been looking for something like this sense the first time I went to show someone NNPTC on google maps and realized it was re-zoned.

I was there from 88-90 for boot camp, ET A-School and NNPS. Then off to Idaho Falls for prototype.

kenneth said...

We were buskells last training co. before his retiring. 81 82. I drew the co. flag and was wondering were it is now. If it still exists I kike to have it back. Kenneth mcdonald.

Brian Cameron said...

I was there 96-97 as an EM and would love to get in touch with anyone that I might have known. A lot of fond memories.

Jim Satala said...

I was in c075 and I was also an et...I was a vamp. ..1 of my fondest memories is getting 5 people together to order pizzas that were 5 for 25 at Louise's or something like that. .buttercheese crust...mmmmmm

Supercub said...

Great memories. I was there 89-90. MM. Power School Class 9006. Then A1W in Idaho Falls.

Unknown said...

Concerning the building that you're not sure of, that might be the Torpedoman A-School. Between boot camp and Nuke Field A-School, we stayed in a 7-floor barracks that was connected to the Torpedoman A-School. This was in 1989.

This was really close to the McDonald's on base. Whenever I went there late on Friday and Saturday nights (after getting off work at the galley), we would always see First Classes and Chiefs in uniform there that were drunk off their asses. When you start drinking at the Mariner's Club at 3:00, I guess food at McD's around 9:00 is just logical. I still remember the Senior Chief going outside and puking his McRib all over the parking lot and the master-at-arms calling a taxi for him.

Nuke89to94 said...

Great memories, I was a nuke MM in class 8906.

For the barracks that you're not sure about (2nd photo from the bottom), that might be the roach motels. I stayed there for about 2 weeks between boot camp and A-School. Nasty place. It was just after Christmas, unusually cold, and I bought a blanket at the mall because they wouldn't provide us any. That place was horrid, there were places where you could literally see daylight through cracks in the walls.

Nuke89to94 said...

Here's a great memory: I was staying at the Torpedoman A-School barracks in Jan. 1989 when the building was evacuated due to a bomb-threat. A few of us were sent back in to inspect for any suspicious packages or anything else laying around.

Once inside, I spotted a brief case sitting next to the elevator (that only E-5s and above were allowed to use). The guy that I was paired with walked over to the brief case, picked it up, and shook it. Moron!! I had visions of it blowing up and taking us both out. I was so mad that I ran up and slugged him in the face (actually, I missed the punch and hit him in the ear).

The guy that I was paired with told an old salty senior chief at the scene that I slugged him. He asked me what happened, and I told him about the guy picking up the brief case and shaking it 6" from his face and about 10' from me. He turned to the guy and said, "You dumb mother-f***er!! If you'd done that in front of me, I would've kicked your ass around the block!!" Nothing ever came of it and neither of us ever said anything about it to anyone. The other dude failed out of A-school and I never saw him again.

Janis said...

I am looking for class photos of NNPS btw the months of 11/81 and 05/82. Does anyone know of a website that contains class photos for the officer side?

ryanshaunkelly said...

NPS Orlando '76?
the library in the vault
fire drills w/ cow & sheep noises

brand new
outrigger garden apartments
right outside the back gate

ryanshaunkelly said...

Quick thunderstorm every
day in the early afternoon?