Harold Franklin Hiles, born July 7, 1915, Washington, C.H., OH. He
went to NTS Norfolk, VA, on Sept. 15, 1935, for Machinist Mate School.
Having a choice of ships upon graduation, he chose the USS West
Virginia which he boarded at Bremerton, WA, after being taken there
from Norfolk on the USS Nitro.
Long Beach, CA, was their port for the next three years. He was
assigned to the "Black Gang" for three months, then transferred to the
Aviation Div. His most memorable experiences include the day-to-day
pride he felt at being a part of the crew of the USS West Virginia.
In June 1939 they departed the port of Long Beach on Fleet Problem XIX,
then was transferred to the USS New York which took them on the annual
midshipmen's cruise, sailing to Quebec. The pending war in Europe
changed the usual destination for the cruise.
He was paid off in Norfolk, VA, and upon becoming a civilian married a
registered nurse and they reared three sons and a daughter. They have
been married almost 58 years. He worked in federal service until
retirement in 1970, and is currently living in Imperial Beach, CA.
Reprinted with permission from Turner Publishing