(Pensacola, Florida; Dec. 8, 2022) –Typhoon Pongsona schwacked the island of Guam twenty years ago today. I arrived on the island for my new assignment at the Fleet Imaging Command, Pacific's photo lab aboard Naval Base Guam barely three weeks earlier in November. I landed on island just after my 32nd birthday, but don't let … Continue reading On the Waterfront – Pongsona + 20
(Pensacola, Florida; Dec. 1, 2022) – The holiday season is upon us! For Christians such as myself, the Christmas season marks the birth of Jesus Christ. For Jews, Hanukkah commemorates the retaking of Jerusalem during the 2nd Century B.C.E., as well as the Miracle of the Oil (when the supply of lamp oil, only enough … Continue reading On the Waterfront – Kris Kringle’s Critically Cautionary Christmas Carol
(Pensacola, Florida; Nov. 23, 2022) – I became a Yeoman (an admin clerk) when I enlisted in the Navy. I didn't know what I really wanted to do long-term, but every command has administrative personnel, so what better rate to choose in order to actually see the Navy and figure out my ultimate path? The … Continue reading On the Waterfront – Thanksgiving in Jolly Old England!
NEW VIDEO!! This is IT! The 100th episode of Sparks1524! Take a moment to see how it all began, and then join me for a brief discussion about the future plans I and my crack staff of one (me!) have in store! Let's celebrate this small, but significant, milestone! https://youtu.be/2QhHSaa1ltk #nathanaelmiller, #sparks1524, #video, #justmythoughts, #travellog, … Continue reading Sparks1524 Video – 100!
(Pensacola, Florida; July 4, 2022) – The amphibious transport dock USS Ponce (LPD 15) is now enjoying her sunset days in a Texas scrapyard, her long career over and her decks quiet until the torches begin their work. However, the Proud Lion represented the Navy—and, by extension, the United States—on many occasions throughout her history. … Continue reading On the Waterfront – Sailing into History – An American Lion’s Independence Day
(Pensacola, Florida; June 9, 2022) – I possess the oddest collection of personal connections to ships I never served aboard. Just as one example: despite numerous attempts, I never set foot aboard the carrier USS Enterprise (CVN 65)—even as a mere visitor. However, every ship I did sail aboard participated in an official formation photo-op … Continue reading On the Waterfront – On Eagle’s Wings
On the Waterfront – Sailing Into History: Dolphins in the Midst (Pensacola, Florida; April 26, 2022) – The ex-USS Ponce (LPD 15) has arrived at her final berth in Texas at the scrapper’s yard. So, it’s time for another ‘On the Waterfront’ sea story about the Proud Lion and the adventures of her intrepid crew, … Continue reading On the Waterfront – Sailing Into History: Dolphins in the Midst
(Pensacola, Florida; April 21, 2022) – I posted the original version of this column nearly two years ago while I was still in Washington State. However, as the Proud Lion is sailing into history now, this memory has taken up pride of place in the formation of memories gliding along the channel for the Grand … Continue reading On the Waterfront – Sailing Into History: The Greatest Seaman
(Pensacola, Florida; April 7, 2022,) – There are moments when disparate threads of unrelated events are woven into a brand new cloth upon which the tapestry of our stories will forever be embroidered. USS Ponce (LPD 15) was one such moment for me. Many unrelated threads from my childhood, my college days, and my early … Continue reading On the Waterfront – Sailing into History: Meeting the Proud Lion
(Silverdale, Washington; Oct. 15, 2020) – The retired aircraft carrier USS Enterprise (CVN 65) had a profound affect on my time at sea, and her deactivation in 2012 foretold my own retirement from the Navy in 2017. Pretty heavy stuff, especially considering I never once set foot aboard her! I joined the Navy to go … Continue reading On the Waterfront – A Tale of a Great Enterprise