1965-1968 Korat and Bangkok


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Asia » Thailand » Central Thailand » Bangkok
August 21st 1965
Published: June 20th 2011
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Bridge on the River KwaiBridge on the River KwaiBridge on the River Kwai

Darryl in the middle with Bob on the right
After one year in Korat, my parents were reassigned to Bangkok where my Mom managed the mission guest home off of Silom Road, and my Dad was mission business manager, teacher at the Bangkok Bible College, and pastor of the Evangelical Church. The church initially occupied the guest home garage, but soon my Dad moved it to a rented conference room at the Hilton Hotel. It eventually ended up in a new church building on Soi 10 Sukhumvit Rd.

This location attracted many expatriates, including my dearest friends Darryl and Marilyn. He was a civil engineer with the Officer in Charge of Construction/Thailand, the U.S. construction contracting agency for Southeast Asia (they built all the American bases for the Vietnam War). They were in their mid 20’s, so not much older than me. Darryl became my inspiration and mentor for becoming a civil engineer. In my senior year he found me a job with Philco/Ford to survey the top of Doi Inthanon, the highest mountain in Thailand, and after I graduated at the OICC/Thailand soils lab. After college I would return to build the road to the top of the mountain and the radar station.

We also vacationed together.
At the River KwaiAt the River KwaiAt the River Kwai

Marilyn, Darryl and Bob
The summer vacation of 1966 found us at the beach at Hua Hin. However, I came down with dengue fever, and was in bed for most of the time.

During the winter vacation of 1966, I came down with an inner ear infection from the swimming pool, and ended up flat on my back for two weeks from the vertigo. I almost missed the Asian games. That was even worse than the dengue fever.

In the summer of 1967 we visited the Bridge over the River Kwai.

Meanwhile my Dad had bought land and oversaw the construction of a new guest home on the north end of town.


Additional photos below
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Boat at Hua HinBoat at Hua Hin
Boat at Hua Hin

Marilyn on left. Bob, Judy and Sue on the right
Sue with Dalok and Judy with Punky Sue with Dalok and Judy with Punky
Sue with Dalok and Judy with Punky

I had Punky since before elementary school


3rd August 2018

Communications sites at Jones Park, Camp Friendship, and Korat RTAFB
QUOTE Philco/Ford to survey the top of Doi Inthanon, the highest mountain in Thailand, and after I graduated at the OICC/Thailand soils lab. After college I would return to build the road to the top of the mountain and the radar station. UNQUOTE Bob, where was this radar station located or perhaps it was a microwave relay? We are trying to find a communications site in the Korat RTAFB area that was manned by Philco-Ford personnel. Terry W. Colvin ( a few miles south of Hua Hin ) P.S.: So far no dengue fever!
3rd August 2018

Communication sites in Thailand
The radar station is on top of Doi Inthanon, southwest of Chiang Mai. It was completed in Dec 1975. Subsequent blogs tell about my time there. I lived in Korat from 1959-1964 and 1965-1966. I knew one Philco-Ford employee who was installing microwave stations. He was a ham radio buff, and got me interested. I think he also had a new Ford Fairlane. On New Years we toured the Khmer ruins at Phi Mai. That wouldn't be you, would it?! As for the location of the microwave station near Korat, when I visited that area in 2007, I believe there was a relay station west of Korat on the Friendship Highway towards Pakchong, as you approach the mountains and near the large lake/reservoir on the north side of the highway. Are you retired near Hua Hin...I loved to vacation there...you must have read my blog about that trip. I also blogged about my visit with my kids to Thailand in 2007, including Hua Hin. I hope you read those blogs, too, and comment!
4th August 2018

Re: Communication sites in Thailand
Thank you for your reply, Bob. There have been a string or rather a waterfall of threads on the Facebook group, All Thailand, Laos, & Cambodia Signal Sites. I copied and pasted your comments to that group today. You were certainly early to Thailand with your parents. I'm sure that William Harrell and others will comments on the relay station along the road to Pakchong. I was stationed at Phu Mu Signal Site near Mukdahan from 8/73 to 1/74. Philco-Ford took over the O&M of the IWCS building and the shots into Laos and elsewhere inside Thailand. I had been at Camp Samae San 1/73 to 8/73 before my in-country PCS to Phu Mu Signal Site. I had worked as a Cryptomaterial Specialist and volunteered to 'poke' type teletype messages. There is a bit of synchronicity in your picking the subject line, "Communications Sites in Thailand". I had prepared an email many years ago where I attempted to list most of the sites in Thailand, and I used that very subject line. That reminds me that I need to update and send that one out again. That is not me, that is, I'm not the ham radio buff you knew who worked for Philco-Ford. My Army career from 1970-1990, was either fixed station teletype/punched or Hollerith card/magnetic tape and then operational testing of tactical communications system such as tropo. Yes, my Thai wife of 45 years and I moved to Thailand in 2008. We are pretty much homebodies and get few visitors. You are welcome to visit with us when you have the time. Some of our adult children and g/children have visited us here. We have five adult children and 12 g/children. I hope to read all of your blogs in the near future. I'm easily distracted on the internet these days. LOL

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