"Chi" Norwood's Pix and Memories- 1967-70
I just found the website for the first time. You might not remember me. I was in 1st Div. They called me "Chi". I was a BM3. Steve was my runnin' partner on the ship, and after we got out. We both stayed in California, got married and had kids. We shared a pad together in Berkeley back in the early 70's. I was the best man at his wedding, and his son has my middle name. He still lives in Vallejo. I know his entire family. His youngest sister and I, my wife, and two other couples formed a social club in the 80's and had some really great times together. Steve gave up the party life in the middle 70's, thought he was becoming an "alchy", so he took the pledge. He went to work for Chevron as an operator in the early 70's and rose in rank to one of the top executives in the company. We don't hang as much anymore. We kind of drifted apart. I would still see him from time to time, but we were never tight like before. I'll always love him like a brother though. We saw each other through some tough times.
I became a painting contractor, started my own business, worked for 20+ years, sold the business and retired in 2005. I've recently decided retirement sucks, so I'm renewing my license and gettin' back in the saddle. This time I intend to work until they plant me. I learned about this site from Harold Goodie & Riley Young. You remember "Tweedy Bird"? AKA "Rye Whiskey"!
I talked to Goodie a couple nights ago, and he told me about this site. We started goin' on about the Rainier and some of the fellows, so I decided to call " Rye Whiskey" last night. He too mentioned this site. It's excellent man! You're doing a fantastic job with it. Wouldn't expect nothin' less from a Rainier sailor. Like all the rest, being aboard that ship had a profound effect on my life. I still carry that "CAN DO" philosophy, and mentality in everything I do, personally and professionally. I'm a member of the Reunion bunch, but I haven't made to any reunion yet. They had it at Port Chicago a few years back, right near me, but I wasn't aware of the reunions then. I absolutely intend to make it to one in the near future.
I was checkin' out the pictures on the website, and I was stunned to see a couple of me. I had Bell's Palsy in '67, my first cruise, and I didn't like taking pictures much. That picture "Liberty Boat-The boys in blue", the guys in the forefront are, left to right, "Earnie Bear", Jose, and me! The other picture, "The Fantail", I'm the one in the middle seated, talking to Ronnie Mann AKA "Rotor Rooter". I can't remember the name of the guy to my left, although I remember his face. Here's a pictures of a few guys off the boat at some joint in Japan. I think? From left to right, Charles Blacknell,(he remained in Oakland after the Navy,we hung out.) Riley Young AKA "Tweety Bird", Reginald Malachi AKA "Bosco", (he too stayed in Oakland. we also hung!) Thomas Gaines (He came through Oakland back in the 80's and found me. We partied hardy!) Adley Davis, and me. There's one of me on the fantail in Subic during Monsoon season. These other photos are pics of me and Etter, the early years, our hippie days! Then there's one with Riley, Me, and Wille Crockett, taken in the 80's when "Rye" came out to visit me. Crockett was in supply on the Rainier. He ran the ship store. Wille also stayed on in Oakland after the Navy, he lived in the same neighborhood as me. We saw each other a lot. That picture at the Black & White ball is, Me in the white dinner jacket, my wife to my right, and Steve Etter's sister, to her right. Her husband is taking the picture. There were a lot of guys stayed in Oakland. Jody Cook, Freddy Mason. I even ran into Sandoval one day gettin on the Bart train. He was the train operator. I live in Tracy now. A small but rapidly growing bay area suburb. Anyhow, man it's a great thing you're doing with the website. Keep up the good work.
Wishing you and the rest of my shipmates, good health & good fortune. Bravo Zulu.
Here are a few of Chi's pictures:
There is a space between the pix- keep scrolling.
The Brothers from the Boat- in Olongapo.
"When you're cool the sun shines ALL the time."
Steve Etter Holding Up the Golden Gate Bridge
Chi on the Fantail
Chi and his lovely wife at a Halloween Party in 2007. See how well he still fits into that thirty year old uniform?