Posted on Jul 15, 2015
LTC Stephen F.
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I remember pay call while being stationed in Bamberg, Germany in the early 1980's. I think pay call was only used for forces stationed overseas [expect that includes all Navy vessels as well] where a choice of currency to receive your pay made sense. Pay call made sense when many service members did not have direct deposit for their salary. I don't know if pay call still exists and where it is used.

[Update July 19] I was an infantry training company commander in 1985 and 1986 so the soldiers under my command [IET soldiers] had pay call and I am pretty sure they were strongly encouraged to get direct deposit. I don't remember if the National Guard soldiers had to switch to direct deposit after they finished infantry one station unit training (OSUT) or if they were exempted because they were not going to be on active duty.

Images: Marines 2nd Air Naval Gunfire Liaison Company Pay Call;
Edited 2 y ago
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LTC Stephen F.
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I remember being a pay officer in Germany for 1st Battalion, 52nd Infantry Regiment at Warner Barracks in Germany. I carried a briefcase with US dollars and Deutsche marks from the finance office to the battalion area. I was armed with a pistol in the holster while carrying and issuing the money during pay call. Having to keep strict accountability of the funds was an important lesson for me as a young officer.
I certainly enjoyed spending my Deutsche marks at the Bäckerei [bakery], Metzgerei [meat market] especially when we are on maneuvers in the German countryside.
Images: 1981-09 1st BN 52nd IN Controllers for Reforger exercise –results of morning brotchen run – breakfast on the hood of the jeep - West of Giessen, Germany.
1981-09 1st BN 52nd IN Controllers for Reforger exercise –results of morning brotchen run – alternate of breakfast on the hood of the jeep - West of Giessen, Germany

FYI CPT Scott Sharon SSgt Boyd Herrst SGT Philip Roncari SGT Carl BlasPO3 Bob McCordSgt Albert Castro SGT Jim A.SGT Rick Colburn PO3 Phyllis Maynard
Maj Robert ThorntonSFC Greg Bruorton SSG David Andrews Sgt John Houck SGT Mark Halmrast (Join to see) Sgt Vance Bonds PO1 H Gene Lawrence SGT Brent Scott CW5 John M. CMSgt Mark Parrish
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SFC Myron Cofer
SFC Myron Cofer
12 mo
1st Tank, Camp Casey Korea, 1989
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SFC Myron Cofer
SFC Myron Cofer
12 mo
Thank You Sir! My experience with "First Tank" convinced me, that I would be making the Army a Career. We worked hard and we played ever harder!
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SSG Todd Cadle
SSG Todd Cadle
11 d
The Zoo! B Co, 1/52 IN, 86-88
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MAJ Donald Zlotnik
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Edited 2 y ago
We have to be kindred spirits! I recall my pay being $71 a month. My last name being Zlotnik, I was always paid by the CO last--but I would wait outside the exit door and collect the money I loaned out for 100% interest--$5 for $10 paid back on payday. We were stationed in Italy and for $5 you could have a good meal, get **** and mildly drunk. I bought a new TR4 with my earnings and spent a lot of time touring Italy. (1960-63)
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CWO3 Dennis McClure
CWO3 Dennis McClure
>1 y
PO2 Alan Frankel - Been to Danang 1970 & 71, our VC-5 squadron had a detachment there!
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CMDCM Maurice Conner
CMDCM Maurice Conner
>1 y
'67-'68 Naval Facility Point Sur, CA: Pay line every other Wednesday...one week I'd get $47.00 (E1-E2), two weeks later I'd get $45.00...my Bride would get a check for $100.00 the first of each month (of which $60.00 had come from my pay acct.) Life was good. Ship board in WESTPAC '69-'73 (E4-E5) pay day 1st and 15th in cash but highly encouraged to have allotment home for the family or a bank so you didn't blow it all on the beach.
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SFC David Xanten
SFC David Xanten
10 mo
My name starts with a X and I was always last in line as we were paid alphabetical by rank. There was a guy one rank above me, his name was Zamora and when I made E-5 and caught him in grade the very next pay was by check. I never got paid ahead of him and I was pissed
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SPC John Cowhig
SPC John Cowhig
10 d
I remember payroll guard duty on Camp King , 4th Trans BDE , in Oberürsel Germany. M16A1 locked but not loaded. I remember thinking " If anyone wants to rob us , they WILL have a round in the chamber....
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SP5 Jim Taylor
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Pay call in the late 50s was in cash, once a month. Right after the appropriate amount was disbursed, the 1SG was ready to be sure that each EM was "participating" in the US Savings Bond program, and whatever other charitable functions were current that month. Long ago and far away - for and EM under E6 to have a checking account permission from the COC was needed. Looks like many things have truly improved over the last few generations.
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LTC Gary Macnamara
LTC Gary Macnamara
5 mo
I was the class "A" agent for my company, "B" Company, 2/508 PIR, in the Dominican Republic. I picked up a payroll of 24,000 dollars in $5.00 bills. They were all new bills and would frequently stick together (I learned to pay attention and did not come up short.). I paid in a tent with a .45 pistol on the table and a guard with an M-16. This might think think this was overkill but a class "A" agent at Ft. Bragg was held up outside the 82nd Airborne Division Finance Office at Fort Bragg and his guard was shot. The robber was caught and I am sure he did a long stint at Fort Leavenworth.
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CSM Donald McGlasson
CSM Donald McGlasson
1 mo
Sound like many of you came along later than I did! I not only remember "pay call" overseas in the mid 80's in Germany where you would have to exchange US currency into marks so that you could pay rent or use in town. I also remember having "pay call" every month in my unit at Fort Bragg in the 70's. We all looked forward to "pay day activities" once a month (we only got paid once a month) where we would have a barracks inspection, in-ranks inspection and "pay call", then the rest of the day off (usuall by 1200 hrs). It was like running the gauntlet, first you would get in line and check off by the company clerk, then report to the pay officer, and of course Top would be there at the end of the line to collect some type of "voluntary?" (red cross, AUSA, etc) donation.
Those days as an enlisted Soldier also came with duties to perform as payroll guard or driver (DA6) duty a couple times a year.
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