Charge of Quarters (CQ) Duty
Mark Layport
3/12th Cavalry, 1973 - 1976


My first CQ …I had just made SGT/E5 and somehow 3 days later I have CQ duty!?? ...I've pulled the job of CQ runner a number of times, but this is the first time I'm the NCOIC ...I was scared stiff! I was worried about DIVISION or BRIGADE calling an Alert. So I grabbed the 2" thick operations book and started to study ...people to contact, phone numbers, etc.

About 21:00 hours one of the guys in my section comes down stairs to the CQ station complaining that one of the new cooks is making too much noise. So I go up to see what the problem is. One of the FNG cooks seems very upset and is pacing back and forth talking to himself real loud. I ask what is the problem, and all he tells me is "Nothing Sarge, Nothing!" I can see something is wrong but I'm not going to stand here and try to worm it out of him! So I tell him fine, but keep the noise down! He shuts up and I head down to my studies …I know the phones going to ring any minute with an Alert order!!! …15 minutes goes by and my guy is back down with the same problem, so I go marching back up a little P.O.'d and go to the cook’s room again! "What is the F-ing problem??!" I semi-yell at the guy ...and he breaks down, one of the other cooks has treated to knife him with an ice pick! ...And he's afraid he’ll be shanked in his sleep! ...OH MAN, where is that Alert when you need one!! *L*

So I'm the NCOIC here, I need to confront the other guy. I try the door and it is locked. Now it's an un-written rule that if you’re in the room you don't lock the door ...means your doing something wrong in there! So I go down and get the master keys for the rooms, and as I head back up I'm meant by the first guy and he's telling me "don't go in there Sarge, he's crazy!" ...He'll stick you, don't go in there!" Sarge don't go in there he's got and ice pick!" ...Basically scaring the crap out of me!!! *G*   

So I unlock the door and turn the door handle ...everybody holds their breath and I just slowly push the door open without going in ...nothing happens, so I walk in. This is a 7-8 man room, all cooks, and everybody is in bed asleep ...except one guy who is smoking on his bed, and he says "how's it's is going Sarge?" I ask why is the door locked?  He says he didn't know that it was. About this time the FNG comes in and starts talking loud and pointing his finger at the guy on the bed, "That's the guy Sarge, he's the one!" I tell him to keep the noise down and go back to his room and let me talk with the guy. So he heads out and I start asking questions. Basically this guy in the room doesn't know anything ...or so he says. I questioned him for about 10 to 15 minutes with no results. So I tell him to crawl into bed and go to sleep and I'll let the 1st Sergeant deal with it in the morning. I go over to the first guy and tell him to go to sleep and we'll deal with this in the morning. He doesn't like this because he's still worried about getting shanked in his sleep. I tell him he can lock his door, I'm the only one with a key and he'd be fine ...he doesn't like it but he goes with the idea. As I'm getting everybody settled down I turn around and there is CWO James, the Squadron CQ for the night, he came by to check on me and my CQ runner pointed him to me here. I briefly tell him the story and he wants to talk with the second guy (would-be ice picker) ...As I head to the room, my CQ runner grabs me and says there some one in the “head” and won't come out! *G*   I tell him I'll deal with it later, and I catch up with Mr. James. He's getting the same story I got ...the guy doesn't know what the other guy is talking about ...maybe he was dreaming? There was really nothing we could do at this point and we started to head out ...I don't know why I looked down near the wall lockers, but laying there on the floor was and ice pick! I grabbed Mr. James’s arm and pointed to the ice pick! We both looked at each other and then at the guy on the bed. "What is this?" ...again he didn't know! Well that story didn't go down as well now, so Mr. James had the guy take his pillow and blanket down to the day room down on the main floor where I'm stationed between the two guys, so I get to pull guard duty too watching this guy doesn't get passed me, and in the morning I get to pass this all on the 1st Sergeant and the CO. So we were rapping things up, Mr. James headed back down to Squadron Headquarters and I started to worry about writing this all up in the log book.

It's about 1:00 in the morning and as I sit down my CQ runner asks ...what did I do with the guy in the bathroom? ...I totally forgot him, so I head down to the bathroom. There in the center stall is a guy, seems to be passed out, he was sitting on the throne, but fell forwards against the door, semi trapped between the door and the toilet. The door opens inward so the only thing I can do is push hard against the door and shove him inward. I do this slowly, and soon I can reach in and pull the door up to disengage it so I can get the guy out. This guy is so drunk, he was in there to taking a crap, and he passes out ...but continues to finish the job he went in there to do! The only clothes he's wearing is a pair of pants, so now he has crap all over himself and squished between his toes! (Sorry ...but that's the truth! *G*)   I don't recognize him and ask him what troop he’s in? ...He doesn't answer, he just starts walking out and down the hall to the stairs and down and out of my AO I'm a happy camper! I go to the CQ station and start to sit down when my CQ runner ask what I did with Albright? Who’s' Albright I ask? ...The guy in the toilet, he tells me, he's one of the cooks! “OH Crap” …so I head down the stairs to run this guy down. This is February and its pretty cold out so I’m starting to get worried, as I'm heading down stairs some guy is heading up and he's got a weird look on his face, I ask if he's seen a guy half dressed any where? ...He kinda stammers ...Yea  Yeah, down on the bottom floor. I rush down and there on the bottom step is this guy sitting down on the step with his head propped up on his elbows …fast asleep. It's near freezing and this guy is half naked, fast asleep, and cover in shit!!! I get him up to the 4th floor and into the shower room, I start a shower for him and he starts acting like he's alive getting his cloth off and heads to the shower. I let him go at it and head back to the CQ desk and finally sit down, and start writing in the log book. About 20 minutes later the half naked guy comes to the CQ desk and is worried sick about getting in trouble for the problems his caused. I told him I haven't written anything up and won't IF he goes down and cleans the bathroom!!? ...He's in LOVE with that idea! He was scared stiff of getting in trouble! So I go back to the log and don't look up till it was 04:30!!

Normal the CQ log was two sheets of paper, mine was 5 sheets! *L*

The would-be ice picker got a Squadron Article 15, and a bust in grade. And THAT was my worse CQ duty  ...EVER! …AND why I don’t like the COOKS!! ...Except on Thanksgiving and Christmas! *LOL*


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