Jungle School?


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DadOfThree
July 16, 2003, 12:13 PM
The military background and shooting in the heavy rain threads that have popped up lately got me to thinking. How many of you guys (or gals) have gone through the Jungle Operations Training Center (JOTC) at Ft. Sherman Panama? I went through in Sept/Oct of 1985. If you want to learn how to take care of a weapon in heavy rain, that's the place to do it. :D

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para.2
July 16, 2003, 01:17 PM
BTDT, twice, in fact. Got the t-shirt, uh, "Jungle Expert" patch.;)

goalie
July 16, 2003, 02:18 PM
Well, I did some training down there, but I stayed at Howard Air Force Base when not out in the field even though I was in the Corps.

Blackhawk 6
July 16, 2003, 02:42 PM
I did six weeks in Panama, including a rotation thru JOTC. Its a shame that we no longer have it.

Rob62
July 16, 2003, 02:57 PM
I was stationed down there from early summer 1980 through Dec 1981 (C 4-10). So I've been through the course more than a few times. Awarded the Jungle Expert patch twice.

For the first month there I was a 90mm recoiless rifle gunner. Yeah, the Army still used them at that time. Talk about PAIN - try carrying a 90 through the jungle at night along with all your other gear. Makes a grown man cry.

Ahhhh the painfull memories. And then there was the great KC Leuer (sp). Somewhere I still have a red dot on a wristwatch. You'd have had to be there to understand.

Rob

4v50 Gary
July 16, 2003, 03:04 PM
My pop went through it during the Korean War. Does that count (osmosis)? ;)

BTW, they were training them in case we went into 'Nam in the '50s.

Ex-Doc
July 16, 2003, 04:17 PM
Let's see.....Black Palm....Kamen....Sloths.....Spider Monkeys.....Snakes...Rain that you could set your watch to....Jungle so thick you'd think it was night....wet obstacle course...smell of burning sage brush...mosquitoes...nightly IV therapy... yep been there.....took Air Assault there too....and BNOC....

DadOfThree
July 17, 2003, 03:42 PM
Oooooh, Black Palm.. shudder... I forgot about that stuff! How did it manage to grow in every single spot that you needed to pull yourself up a hill?
For those who have never been there, it's like a cross between a palm tree and a porcupine. :D

sensei
July 18, 2003, 02:34 PM
Jungle Survival school

May 1968

Phillipine Islands

sensei

TKHover
July 18, 2003, 04:34 PM
Did a couple of short tours there flying Hueys in support of the jungle training. We did troop insertions and extractions. It was interesting flying up and down the Canal everyday. Some beautiful countryside..... As they say...nice place to visit, but I wouldn't want to live there.
Tom

Sisco
July 18, 2003, 06:38 PM
J.E.S.T. (Jungle Enviornment Survival Training) Cubi Point Phillipines 1979.
learnd that really big lizards don't tast too bad, fruit bat tastes like liver. :D

Willard
July 21, 2003, 09:39 AM
I went in 1990 as a Scout Platoon member in a battalion of the 101st Airborne (AASLT), they had a special course just for scouts, it was fantastic. We swam the rio Chagres at night, rowed up the canal to the locks, and generally had a good time playing in the jungle.

CZ-100
July 21, 2003, 10:34 AM
Completed the course in the spring of '83 :D

Oh how I miss those cool days and fridged nights...:what:

mormonsniper
July 21, 2003, 10:56 AM
Lived there for 3 years as a dependent. My high school buddy (Balboa High School) and I hunted & spearfished in the interior. Use to take the trunk lid off our VW's and go hunting rabbits on one of the roads into the mountains. There were helo pads along the way. Been many years ago. Lived in Ft Clayton. Mango fights with my brothers. Fishing in Gatun Lake. Worked for the Panama Canal Company between high school and college. Dove at Valhalla.
Wowzers. I was a kid. Lived in the jungle off and on.:neener:

DadOfThree
July 21, 2003, 09:37 PM
Willard,
We swam the rio Chagres at night
You swam in the Chagres at night? Are you nuts? :what: We used to go up to Ft San Lorenzo and watch the hammerheads swim up that river to feed. As for all of you guys that went through the course several times, I don't envy you. I have a lot of good memories from the experience but you couldn't have paid me to go through again. :D It was a month before I got all of the skin back on my feet. :D

Willard
July 22, 2003, 08:27 AM
Swimming the Rio Chagres was part of the course. We made poncho rafts and across we went with our buddies. Of course since I was most comfortable in the water (maybe not the strongest swimmer, but growing up in the Ocean State can have its good points) I was with the weakest swimmer, and it took forever to get across.
I was surprised at how well we all faired in the jungle. One guy had a festering sore on his leg, and the second day two guys went down fromt he heat, but that was it. Of course, being in an 18 man platoon may have helped, we had one EMT and four combat lifesavers constantly checking feet and such.
JOTC had a great cadre, and the three weeks+ I spent there are one of the highlights of my Army time. I was saddened to see that we gave it away.
Mormonsniper, I envy you the experience. 13 years later I still dream about the jungle. I fell in love down there.


Willard

LAWDOGKMS
July 22, 2003, 08:57 AM
1986 J.E.S.T. survivor here....

We made pressure cookers, spoons, forks out of bamboo....

Learned which plants hold water....you would not believe how much water a 50' bamboo stalk holds!

Learned how to cleanse river water with iodine from natural iodine plant..

How to make fire with bamboo only...

How to make snares and traps for small game..

For those of you that were there....do you remember the 18" "Green King Cobra" they had in captivity there?

A cobra can raise 1/3rd of it's body off the ground vertically...

Can you imagine staring a cobra in the face while walking through the high grass???

joetr
April 11, 2010, 04:54 PM
I was in ft sherman in Nov 77 , flying in howard afb in a Chinook, god awful loud ! I was in the air the same time Lenard skinner band crashed. I remember black palm and those black gloves wouldn't help during the torrential rains everyday at 2 pm precisely.Went to the small beach with the shark net a 100 yards out, on the little time off I had and stepping on sea urchins, I don't know what needles hurt more ,black palm or sea urchins!!!!!Wow, the creatures you ran in to in the jungle at nite !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

EddieNFL
April 11, 2010, 05:41 PM
Let's see.....Black Palm....Kamen....Sloths.....Spider Monkeys.....Snakes...Rain that you could set your watch to....Jungle so thick you'd think it was night....wet obstacle course...smell of burning sage brush...mosquitoes...nightly IV therapy... yep been there.....took Air Assault there too....and BNOC....
You forgot Kudamondos (sp?) and tree crabs.

Spent a little time there is the late '80s including Operation JUST CAUSE.

Jorg Nysgerrig
April 11, 2010, 05:47 PM
This thread is almost 7 years old.

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