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Chip Morton's Journal

When Fail Safe Wasn't

William Corbett's been elected to Congress. Not that I mind. After all, if he wants to spout off his political views, then Congress is the place to do it. He sure gave us a hard time about them. Well, I digress.
Nelson's pretty much forgotten all about him now, but Lee, well, he's a bit moody. I suppose it's a Captain thing. After all, it was his responsibility to insure his officers were up to snuff, especially in a crisis. And Lt. Cmdr. Corbett, as he was then, on loan from the Navy, decided he and we shouldn't push the button when the Fail Safe activated. I won't go into details here but he was dishonorably discharged, and nobody really wants to remember the thing.
But it's been preying on Lee's mind, so when he mentioned he wanted to review some of our older security images from aboard Seaview, I told him I'd get my friend McGee from NCIS to help,and he's responsible for coloring some of the shots that had malfunctioning filters.
When Lee reviews the pictures, at least he can remember our  celebration crossing the equator.


Me as King Neptune. Glad it was an unused mop.


Seaman Kowalski as the Royal Baby. He sure got a kick out of squirting the milk at Nelson and Lee.


Ski's console exploded right into his eyes. Sure glad Doc was able to save his sight.


Every Captain's nightmare.
You train for it, you put your emotions on hold, but as Captain, it  had to be worse for Lee than anyone else aboard.



Corbett couldn't bring himself to unlock his unit. Nelson had to.

Suffice it to say, the alert was cancelled, but due to a malfunction in the fail safe firing control, one of our missiles was still set to launch as soon as we'd surface.


Meanwhile, Doc had his hands full in Sick Bay.


Corbett figuring out a way to get the missile to launch without it (or us) broaching the surface. Little did we know that he fudged it for higher than the 1000 feet Nelson wanted the missile to launch at in order to avoid atmospheric pollution.


Missle released safely underwater and fell harmlessly to the bottom for us to retrieve later.


Seaman Clark being readied for his introduction to King Neptune.


Lt. Cmdr. William Corbett being tarred and feathered. Actually we used honey. Like most career officers he was well aware of the traditional Crossing the Equator ceremonies for newbies to it.


Chief Curley Jones as Mrs. Neptune, God rest him.



Things were going just swell, but then the alert happened. It was all hands to their battle stations and fail-safe officers to unlock their stations. Tar, feathers, and all.



Unlocking the fail-safe units.


Like I said, you train for it, but when it happens, it's almost as if you're in a disbelieving trance.Still, you do your duty.


Lee comforting a nervous Clark while we were waiting for the do or don't signal.  Heck, we were all nervous.


Didn't help that we got company in the form of an enemy destroyer which dumped ash cans on us, and caused some severe damage.


As it turned out, Corbett's defiance of Nelson's orders was a blessing, as our ballast controls were out and we kept rising to the surface where we would have suffered a pretty big (and fatal) boom.


Later Nelson and Lee reflecting on the whole thing.

At least that's what I think they talked about. McGee had to tweek the damaged topside cam to get this image.