One such place that time has wounded is a place I spent four good years of my military career. Coast Guard Station Shark River in Avon-by-the-Sea, New Jersey.
In May 1989 I became a "plank owner" when I was part of the crew of twenty that re-commissioned the station after it had been closed years before due to budget cuts.
I was the senior engineer, responsible for maintaining the two search and rescue boats homeported there as well as all the vehicles, trailers, equipment as well as the building and grounds. Plus I held qualifications to command those boats on missions.
It was a very fast paced, interesting four years. I made many long term friends and had quite a few adventures there.
Marti and I took a ride over to see the station and found it completely empty, locked and nearly abandoned. The boat slip was also empty.
Memories came flooding back, even times when Marti and our kids came to visit me at work. My old shop and office was locked and empty.
One thing that I built still remained, it brought a smile to my face.
It is a weapons clearing station. Just a simple pipe cemented into the ground with a cover. When we would return from a mission, we would unload our weapons and to make sure they were empty, the pistol or rifle would be pointed into the barrel and the trigger squeezed. If the weapon was empty, you'd hear a click. If it wasn't and the weapon fired, the round would travel down into the ground instead of hurting someone. I know it worked on one occasion when we had a defective pistol and the round fired harmlessly into the ground. Plus I have all ten of my toes as proof. :c)
The reason the station is empty is due to budget cuts to the Coast Guard. All the boats and equipment have been sent to the next station South along the coast. During the summer boating season, Memorial Day to Labor Day, a boat and crew will be stationed here just during the weekends.
It was sad to see what once was as it now is. Fortunately I have many happy memories, treasured photographs and awards from my time there. Better yet is the many people alive today that we rescued.
The sadness didn't last long, we visited granddaughter Anabelle and got our baby fix. All is well in our world.
Here is Anabelle and mom Amanda having a little girl talk.
Thanks for visiting and feel free to leave a comment.