Dave Matteson's Adventures in Turkey

In 1961 the USSR walled off eastern Germany and then continued north and south until all of Eastern Europe was secluded from Western Europe. They systematically assaulted and took by force command and control of each country behind the "Iron Curtain". Turkey would border Bulgaria on the west and Russia on the north and east. The Black Sea, bordering Turkey and the USSR would be the proving ground for the Warsaw Pact and NATO until the mid 80's.

Unfortunately this story started in 1948. At this point the Cold War as we knew it had begun. Tensions were already high between the key players The United States and the Union of the Soviet Socialist Republic. The atomic age was a tricky time for the world and as the jet age turned into the space age with it came technologies that neither side was ready for. Accidents were bound to happen and did both in the military world and in the civilian world.

Ironically, the web site who these adventures are about and the builder of it, his son, would serve on the frontlines of the cold war in 2 different locations 20 years apart facing off with the same enemy but in a different service.




Enjoy the tour!



USAFSS 6932 RSM 1960 - 1961

The long and winding road. From our community on the cliffs to our senior years. Just a little remembrance. At the time the photo was taken a water pipe line was being laid from the base to a Samsun village without clean water.


Did it snow in Samsun? Once in a while.

How did we handle the snow? Yeah, right, I was there before the snowplow was invented!


Dave Matteson (left) and John "Red" Wright. Red is wearing the Sam-issued cold weather gear (a little over-kill). Why am I wearing class A blues? Must have had a big date!

This is a photo of Ops: ELINT'S parabolic is on the left and GE radomes right.


Hobbies helped the time go by. Self immolation was one. Actually these are pipe smokers who discovered that the Turkish meerschaum pipes turned a shiny ebony black when torched with lighter fluid . Boys will be boys! Ed Gallner, one of my roommates, mans the flame thrower.

Our housekeeper, Ahmet, had many duties: like scrubbing out fire stains on the tile floors


Samsun city 1960 -'61. Note the coast hiway has not been improved as in George Campbell's website photo. Unfortunately, the city is now very crowded and does not have the suburban look of this photo.

Samsun Harbor breakwater. Across the port from the base on the promontory. Note the white radomes upper right.


A side street in Samusun opposite about where the train station and the park were. One of my favorite photos

I came in to Sam by way of Karamursel and Trabzon in a Colonel's C-47 on an inspection tour. But this was the last sight most guys saw, including me, when they left: THY's Fairchild F-27. A wheeldragger but otherwise a nice A/C.



TUSLOG Det. 3-2 viewed from the water tower - I don't know who took the black and white. I got it while I was at Sam. It looks like it might have been an official photo. I don't think they would have let just anyone go up on the tower. It was probably taken by someone from the base photo lab. I know they had photo personnel as I met one who came in the same time I did (A1C Luther Franklin) but I know he didn't take it because this foto was taken when the base first opened.



TUSLOG Det 3-2
US Military in Turkey
Email Dave Matteson



We would like to thank Joe Crary for sending in the following photos. Though they are his they were not taken by him as they were part of the official base brochure.

Joe was assigned to 3-2 from January 1961 to May 1962, Then went to Germany.

Thanks Joe!