Taipei Air Station - 1966 - - - " What you have in the end are memories"......... Photo Courtesy of Richard Reesh.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Tainan Air Base 1972

I've been writing about the United States Military in Taiwan since October 2005. 

Since those early days of posting stories and photographs, I've not had a hint of a Tainan "base map" of the US Air Force area that could be read.  The one map that we had, courtesy of Les Duffin, was too small to really see with much clarity

Rick Slater, administrator of the Tainan Air Base Facebook pages asked many who joined the Tainan Facebook,  if anyone had a copy of the old base map.
 Rick was aware that large maps of the base existed and were posted on the walls of at least two law enforcement offices at Tainan.  
Anyone having one of those old maps would have left Tainan 35 to 40 years ago.

Today, we have our “first” clear and clean map of the US Air Force area at Tainan AB. 

The map clearly shows how every “nook and cranny” was utilized in the small footprint the US Air Force utilized at Tainan AB. I don’t believe they missed anything. 

The area in 1972 was such a big change from the early 1950s, when MAAG first arrived and bamboo huts were constructed. 

From the archives of the "USAF History in Taiwan" is this entry:

August 1956:  A construction project at Tainan AB consisting of Bamboo Huts for living quarters was started in June and completed in August.  Twenty additional huts were completed in December 1956.

Some of those 1956 "huts."

 In the late 1950s, new construction began on Tainan and it grew to what is depicted on the 1972 map of the US Air Force area of Tainan Air Station. 

Special thanks to James Taylor who scanned his yellowed and faded copy of the Tainan map, sent it on to Rick Slater,  the administrator of the Tainan Facebook pages. 
James Taylor was the Law Enforcement Desk Sergeant at Tainan during his tour. 

Also much thanks to Bruce Rayle for his help in cleaning, lightening and darkening areas of the map so that it was presentable to our readers. 

Bruce spent some of his younger years at Hsinchu.  Bruce's father was an US Army Officer assigned to MAAG in Hsinchu. Here's a link to Bruce's Family's story.

In October 2013, a group of former military men and their spouses, including myself, were invited onto Tainan Air Base to renew our memories of the base.

We were blessed to arrive on a bright, sunny day, no showers to hinder our visit.

We were met by a group of Taiwan Air Force Pilots and military officers who would be our hosts and guides as we toured the base. 

Our Taiwan Air Force hosts, welcoming us onto Tainan Air Base. 

Walking toward the Tainan AB Museum.

Up the steps into the building which housed the Museum. 

Signing the Guest Book..

The display area is very large and has many photographs showing US personnel and equipment.

We moved onto our bus and proceeded to the Fire Station to begin our tour. 
One of the men in our group had worked at the Tainan US Air Force Fire Station during his tour at Tainan.

Our first stop in the old US Air Force area was along Bolling Street.

This was one of the buildings that was still being used along Bolling Street. 
 I believe this leads to the swimming pool.

At the east end of Bolling street,  the Gym, with what looks like Aborigine markings.

Here's an old gate just next to the Gym. 

There has been some talk about the gates at Tainan.  I'm not sure if this gate was in use during our sojourn at Tainan, perhaps someone can explain if this was an active gate during your assignment at Tainan.

Two of our group were encouraged to display their best military bearing, "waving em in."

The Theater, the roof is about ready to fall-in.

Going about business in 1973. 
Back-in-the-day, the Theater was a "Favorite" in many of our lives.
 Photo courtesy of Roger Trzebiatowski 

The Rendezvous...  Looks like it had a face-lift.
What was your favorite dish from the Rendezvous kitchen?

Across Fourth Street from the Theater/ Rendezvous parking lot, the empty area where the Motor Pool once stood.

Those two warehouses in the distance, are they buildings 213 and 214, seen on the map below.

This map is very large, so keep clicking on the map until it enlarges....
Please leave your Comments below.



Jim Dwyer said...

Hi Kent -- I always enjoy Your posts. My Wife and I were part of the 2013 Tour which we enjoyed. Though not stationed at Tainan I did fly in there a few times while stationed at CCK AB just up the road. Your posts bring back the memories from Years Gone By. Thanks Akiko and Jim

Anonymous said...

It's great to finally have a readable version of the base map. Thanks to everyone who made this possible.

Anonymous said...

FYI. 1975 image.

Gerie Statler Murphy said...

My dad was stationed in Tainan 1968-1972 ish ...
Even though I was very young (7-10), I have fond memories of living there. It's nice to see pictures and a map to rekindle my memories.
Thank you so much for posting these.

Gerie Statler Murphy said...

In response to your question about the front gate neat the gym. When we lived there in 68-72 that was the main gate .. . pretty much the only gate used. Occasionally my dad would drive us through the back gate, near his office in the 'munitions'??

rick slater said...

Again , it was just SO great, that James Taylor, Tainan LE (Law Enforcement), remembered that he had the larger Tainan AB map that hung on their office's wall. And to get them copied and send to myself and Kent Mathieu. Jack Sarles, Sec. Pol. K-9 at Tainan, had in haste, removed two pieces of an expanded view of the base, showing, the munitions dump and Toff, and the K-9 kennels. Perplexing, is the location of the revetment or earthen berm, that was on the OTHER side of Andrews Road. As Andrew Rd ran East and West. Andrews Rd ran along the ball courts. Air Asia was on the other side of this berm. Hence why the berm was there-to stop the jet engine noise and other manufacturing noises coming from Air Asia. Air Asia and the CAF base northerly, might have shared another gate... We could still hear the noises, but were a bit muffled. And First Rd., ran North and South. There was a cinderblock/stucco'd wall, that ran from the angled Main Gate, South to the Commissary and the BX. That Main Gate, that US LE and CAF manned 24/7, sat catty-cornered to Andrews and First Rds.(far upper rt of the map)