Atwell, Charles
27 Sept 2009
I was born in 1947 in Charlotte, NC.  Prior to graduation from high school in 1965 joined
the Navy reserve.  The recruiter wore a set of Dolphins and signed me up for sub school
when I showed interest.  After HS graduation flew off to basic in Great Lakes Ill.  Then on
to sub school in New London Ct.  Also attended quartermaster and navigation school in
New London.  Was assigned to my first sub in Norfolk Va. in early 1966.  That sub was
the USS Runner SS476.  Pulled weekly ops out of Norfolk for the first few months.  Made
a trans-Atlantic trip into and around the Mediterranean in late 1966.  Sub qualified during
that trip earning my first set of Dolphins.  After that trip I was transferred to my second sub,
the USS James Monroe SSBN622 in Charleston, SC.  I qualified on her during my first
three month patrol submerged in the Med.  After two patrols of three months each on the
Monroe I was transferred to the USS Thornback SS418 in 1967 while she was in dry-dock
in Charleston, SC.   Sub qualified on her pretty quickly and then made Quartermaster 3rd
class.  After the yards the boat made weekly ops up and down the east coast and through
the Caribbean Islands.  During my deployment on the Thornback I married my present and
only wife.  One of my Thornback shipmates was my best man in my wedding.  Several
other shipmates were in attendance, names I will always remember.  Then just prior to the
Thornback's deployment into the Med in early 1968, I was transferred to my fourth sub,
the USS Darter SS576 in Charleston, SC.  More weekly ops until late 1969 and final
separation from the US Navy in October of 1969.

After discharge from the Navy I went to work for a local natural gas distribution company
called Piedmont Natural Gas in Charlotte, NC.  Worked there for 37 years then retired in
2007.  The wife and I have three children, a son and two daughters and 8 grandchildren,
four of each.

The wife and I now live in McCormick, SC in Savannah Lakes Village.  Retirement
activities include golfing, fishing, hunting deer, hunting turkey, hunting rabbit, hunting
dove, and feeding our faces with the result.  Those golf eggs are a bit hard on the teeth.