Posted on May 3, 2016
Sgt Davis Le
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Being in the 3381 field for 4.5 years, I spend most of the time at Camp Lejeune and till this day, I remember all the Mess Hall I used to worked at. I realized in government sector job I'm in, I'm seeing a lot of contractors for dining facilities. They've have contractors in the field, garrison, and deployment. I don't know about ship, but other than that, are we just fading away? Is it cheaper to fade us out or is it worth to go through contracts?

Seeing this brought back fond memories. http://terminallance.com/2016/04/29/terminal-lance-423-food-service-specialist/
Edited 8 y ago
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Responses: 14
Sgt Peter Bowers
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Cooks boost Morale! A hot,well cooked, nutritious meal makes the Troops feel appreciated! I felt like I was making their lives better by serving up my Cheesecakes and other decadent desserts! Their happiness with my product was rewarding enough. Always had second servings available, whether in the Dining Facility or out in the Field, I always gave it 110%! Cooks care about not only the Food,(quality,freshness,etc.), how the Dining Hall looks,they care about the People! Friendships! If I had to do it all over again, its Food Services all the way! KEEP THE COOKS!! Sorry for being long winded Folks! God Bless You all, Stay Safe out there!
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LCpl Aaron Freeman
LCpl Aaron Freeman
7 y
Glad to see we were appreciated! I hated working 16 hrs a day, in a thankless job! I remember when we had grunts doing mess duty, and they would often say that they would NEVER badmouth us again, after seeing how many hours we put in, or how dangerous the job could be! Slip injuries were common, with all the grease and water on the floor! Burns... God, I stopped counting how many times I got burnt! Cuts from numerous sources... yeah, I'll take a grunt's job, over this!
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LCpl Richard Peifer
LCpl Richard Peifer
>1 y
Amen! The cuts the bruises the broken arms and cracked ribs. I am proud to sport the scars of mess hall life.  We would have personnel sent to us put on mess duty as a punishment. I don't think anyone ever realized that our daily life in the mess hall was everyone else's punishment. But like it was said, if I had it to do again... I loved knowing that my hard work, the sweat and brutal conditions in CAX  at 29 stumps was appreciated. After being deployed in the very beginning of OIF I learned what it meant to have that hot chow after so many MRE's. I learned how much it raised my spirit just to sit and have a hot drink and food that didn't come out of a bag. Keep the cooks! Contractors won't be there in the deep of it. They aren't gonna care if you've had a bad day and something as simple as an extra piece of cake could bring that smile that keeps your head in the game. They plain don't understand that while your not a grunt, pogs are not just a way for us to do our part. I was a 3381, a US Marine, a rifleman first and I could hold my own in country. I didn't cook in combat I was a fifty cal heavy gunner on a truck. But at one point after some intense situations we all just needed some chow. We cooked tray rats but it was a much needed morale boost in the middle of what was an all around bad time. Would those civilian contractors  have made the trip behind enemy lines thru all the amushes and mortar attacks to bring our men some hot chow? Its why we have cooks. It's why the mos exists. It's why we train in the field mess and why we cross train with weapons and spatulas. We are  combat cooks with pride in our ability to cook and fight. Ooh-rah cooks. You're the boost our grunts need and the fire watch they always put on at midnight. Keep cooking and be proud of the part you serve in the greatest fighting force in the world. I know I am. I am a combat cook and damn proud to be one.
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SMSgt Lawrence McCarter
SMSgt Lawrence McCarter
>1 y
Things just aren't the same without the Military cooks and We always appreciated them and they did try and succeed in serving good meals. It used to be You could also have as much as You wanted as long as You ate what You took. I always cleaned My plate off. The rationing of food is in My opinion BS, I've never been overweight that that is not even a concern for Me. Some of the best meals on Military Installations I had were from Military cooks. I always thought the Air Force did a good job making sure their people had good meals.
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Cpl Food Service, Specialist
Cpl (Join to see)
6 y
RAH!! I miss my food service days so much! Working many hours nonstop to produce the best products we could! Builds a great sense of pride!
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Cpl Edward T. Brickeen Jr.
8
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without a doubt, cooks should be kept. Being a cook, we genuinely give a damn a hell of a lot more than civilians. They care about plate costs and how their parent company rates them. We care about things like taste and how everyone likes the place. I worked in New River and saw a mess hall ran by civilians. There was little to no focus on how the food was, and more on how much it costs. If we got caught hooking up a fellow Marine, we were in some shit. I was also in Hawaii, where the opposite was true. I spent three years in New River, and less than two in Hawaii, with Hawaii being my last duty station. I learned more as an NCO in those 23 months in K-Bay than the 37 in New River.
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Sgt Davis Le
Sgt Davis Le
8 y
I agree with you, but in the past even during deployments, I don't see cooks deployed as much. If they did, they're dicking around with the line button counter.
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PO3 James Staley
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On the ship there is just CS's and we would have people come to us from other rates. I really can't think of what it is called off the top of my head. On land it all depends where you are at. When I was on NAS lemoore the only contractors we had just washed dishes, cleaned the tables, etc. While on the Atsugi base Japan we had contractors that did some of the cooking and cleaning. The CS's would do some cooking and run the line. I would say keep them. They really need to go back to the way it was where we made everything ourselves. When I was about to get out they started having so much pre made food it wasn't even funny. How can these people learn anything when all they have to do is just open a package, heat, and serve. I learned how to make a lot of different things and I was good at it. You know your adobo is good when you have people coming back for 3rds.
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PO1 Shannon Drosdak
PO1 Shannon Drosdak
8 y
PO3 James Staley - I was an MS originally ;) and like you said, it all got swept away off the portside after CS came around
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PO3 James Staley
PO3 James Staley
8 y
PO1 Shannon Drosdak - It was funny watching the CS's flip out when they don't have everything they need. We know how to work around it. We where not Mess Specialist we where MacGyver Specialist.
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Sgt Peter Bowers
Sgt Peter Bowers
7 y
Pre-Made? My brother served on the USS Midway, his highlight of the day/night was Mealtimes! Preparing food is an Art! I heard that between the Army/Navy, they had the best Food Services training. That was yrs. ago. All the Armed Forces offer the best training opportunities! God Bless You all, Stay Safe out there!
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LCpl Aaron Freeman
LCpl Aaron Freeman
7 y
As a Marine 3381, on ship, we'd run circles around our Navy counterparts... why? Because we gave a shit about what we prepared! And, we'd often have sailors come up to us and say, "glad we have Marines afloat with us! You guys are better than our cooks!" That's enough to give Marines, a hard on!
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