REUNITING SHIPMATES OF THE USS ALEXANDER HAMILTON, SSBN 617
This was a classic submarine prank.
Our good friend and shipmate Pat Williamson (FTB) wanted to lose a little weight one patrol, so he brought a bunch of canned tuna in his seabag. He stored the cans in the MCC outboards. At some point during the patrol one of the other FTB's got the lot numbers from the cans and gave the numbers to the Radiomen who in turn generated a bogus Naval Message that they interleaved into the Armed Forces Newsgrams that we received via Teletype. Upon reading this message Pat checked the numbers on the cans against the message. Of course they fell into the range listed on the message. He went to the Corpsman's shack in the Missile Compartment, but the Corpsman - being a good submariner - was in on the joke. He gave pat a pill that would make you pee orange. He told Pat that if he peed orange that meant that he had been exposed to Mercury. Pat did indeed pee orange. The next phase of the joke consisted of telling Pat that we were on our way to the Azores so that he could be medivac'ed. After a couple of days of this misery Pat was finally told it was a joke. He claimed that he knew it all along, but I am not so sure about that!