Small groups enter the bottom of the tank through an escape
lock and then rise to the top of the tank using a device called
a Momsen lung. There are several safety divers with scuba
tanks of air who are fl oating around at different depths in the
tank to help anyone who apparently is getting into trouble.
My friend arranged for me to have a complete physical exam
to check out my lungs before participating. Fortunately (for
me) I failed the physical as soon as the doctor found out
about my childhood asthma. However John Everitt decided
to participate. He never forgave me for getting him involved
since he found it to be a really frightening experience.
Our group of Offi cers and us civilian analysts fl ew back to
Japan the fi rst week of January, 1951. When I checked in with
Admiral Arleigh Burke in Tokyo, I told him that the Intelligence
Section at Pearl Harbor had suggested that I visit the radar
station at Wakkanai. He agreed and told me that he had spent a
few days aboard an American sub in La Perouse Strait a month
earlier when it was on station to try to detect Russian subs. I
made arrangement to go by train from Tokyo to Misawa in the
north of Honshu where I got off at the railroad station and got a
ride in an Air Force truck to the Misawa Air Force Base. I stayed
there overnight and the next morning the Air Force fl ew me up
to Hokkaido. The Army operates a train once a week carrying
people and supplies to make a circle of all Army outposts on
Hokkaido It took me right to the Air Force radar site at Wakkanai.
I had bought skis from an IBM civilian that I had met in Tokyo
because there was at least fi ve feet of snow in January all over
Hokkaido. I spent a week living and working at the radar site.
The meals were ok American food. I would work from about
9 am until 4 pm examining months of radar detection logs to
see if the radar had detected Russian submarines running on
the surface in La Perouse Strait. I could tell which was which
from the speed of the contact since the airplanes were usually
going 200 knots and ships and submarines only 10 knots or so.
I would quit about four, put on my skis and ski into the small
village of Wakkanai. It was a port with several piers for fi shing
boats. I found it fascinating to watch a fi shing boat arrive and