Navy-Marine Corps MARS in Vietnam

Use Your Browsers BACK Key to exit.


Quantico: Dec 1965. Vol. 49, Iss. 12;  pg. 66, 2 pgs


Copyright Marine Corps Association Dec 1965

Dear Sir:

If I were Commandant, I would institute a system for issuing a category "B" MOS for amateur radio operators so that operators could be transferred to organizations with a requirement for them. I would then appoint three districts of operation and have a coordinator for each district: East Coast, West Coast and Pacific districts. In this way, all problems of equipment, operations or personnel could be handled in an official manner.

I would direct all Special Services officers (on Marine bases) to maintain an amateur radio station in sound working order and have the operator report his traffic total, (Marine Corps) to the local Commanding General.

There are several problems that are felt more strongly by Marine amateur stations overseas that are un-noticeable CONUS. Support of overseas stations by CONUS stations. It is difficult at times to get schedules with CONUS stations because it is felt on some bases that there is very little need or justification for the expenses of maintaining an amateur radio station, or the budget is so small, if the station has a major breakdown it is out of action until the next quarter . . . .

The next problem is availability of operators. There is no system at present to find out who is a licensed operator or how to get one. Therefore, the stations are at the mercy of Lady Luck on obtaining operators and when you find a qualified operator there is a fight to get his local command to release him.

The last problem is the coordination of all amateur radio stations. At present, there is none. A station overseas is at the mercy of the whims of an NCOIC of a Stateside station. If he doesn't like to handle certain types of traffic, then he won't hold a schedule with the overseas station. This leaves you only one alternative. Through many hours of calling you finally get a civilian operator to handle traffic on his leisure time and at his expense.

SSgt H. W. Boggs


Reproduced with permission of the copyright owner. Further reproduction or distribution is prohibited without permission.

CWO Joe Van Brocklin USMC Liaison Officer to Navy-Marine Corps MARS announced in the March 1968 Zero Beat that the Commandant had approved Change 24 to the MOS manual which included MOS 8981Military Affiliate Radio System Radio Operator (W).  All operators whose primary MOS provided pro-pay retained the pay during MARS assignment.