Oral history interview of Mr. Malcolm Baird. Interview conducted by Sharon Rodriguez at the University of Central Florida in Orlando, Florida on 03/01/2018.
0:01 Introduction; 0:38 Background information and family life; 1:54 Elementary school and Higher Education; 3:42 Talks about his father's service in the Navy during WWII; 5:00 Continuing education in the Navy; 6:16 Talks about why he selected the Navy over the other branches in 1968; 7:53 Talks about what drove him to become a submariner; 9:00 The influence of the Draft on his classmates; 10:04 Basic training in Chicago; 11:44 Advanced training at the Naval guided missile school and sonar training, ex; 13:55 Talks about a typical day at guided missile school; 15:31 Talks about bypassing Sub School and moving directly onto the Sub fleet; 16:41 Meeting his wife while in college and deciding to marry while still in school; 19:57 First duty station on the USS Thomas Edison as a replacement in Spain; 21:23 Talks about Sub patrols in the Mediterranean and touring Europe; 22:22 Becoming a qualified crew member on board the Edison; 25:35 Interacting with locals while in various European ports; 27:00 Communicating with home while away at sea "family-gram"; 29:49 Qualifying in additional occupations on the Sub to become more versatile; 31:05 "Blue Nose" and "Golden Dragon" sea passage qualifications; 34:00 Tracking Russian Subs on patrol; 35:54 Next assignment on-board a sub repair ship in Guam; 36:00 Talks about some of the various ports of call he visited in the Pacific; 37:20 Re-enlisting in the Navy and a new assignment in Florida; 40:17 Using his B.S. to attend Officer Candidate School in the Navy; 40:50 Attended Sub School as an officer; 43:00 Various Duties on-board the Submarine; 47:50 Description of sub life/ perceptions of life on board; 49:40 Interacting with a Soviet Sub while on maneuvers; 51:10 Daily routine of living on a Nuclear Sub/ the importance of Food; 53:29 Long range patrols lasting up to 90 days under water; 56:00 Transferred to a diesel training Sub In the Western Pacific, took part in "Black-ops" off of Chinese coast; 58:36 Interacting with the locals in the Western Pacific; 59:00 High standards of living while stationed in the Philippines; 1:04:00 life after the Navy and continuing to travel with his wife; 1:05:00 overall recollections of the difficulties on board an aging diesel Sub; 1:10:57 Why he ultimately decided to leave the Navy; 1:14:30 Post Navy Career and civilian sector employment; 1:17:54 Influence of secondary education on Navy career; 1:19:45 Commendations and medals; 1:22:35 Final thoughts; 1:23:32 Conclusion.
Date of Birth
Place of Birth
White - Non Hispanic
War or Conflict
Cold War Era
Begin/End date of Service - 1st
Entrance into Service
Branch of Service
Unit of Service
Recruit Training Command, Great Lakes, IL; US Naval Guided Missile School, Dam Neck, VA; USS Thomas A. Edison (SSBN 610 Blue); USS Proteus (AS 19); Naval Ordnance Test Unit, Cape Canaveral, FL; Officer Candidate School, Newport, RI; US Naval Guided Missile School, Dam Neck, VA; Submarine School, Groton, CT; USS Tecumseh (SSBN 628 Gold); USS Grayback (SS 574); Fleet Ballistic Missile Operational Test Support Unit Two embarked on USNS Range Sentinel (T-AGM-22).
Location of Service
Groton (Conn.); Rota (Spain); Guam; Charleston (S.C.); Holy Lock (Scotland); Subic Bay (Philippines); Cape Canaveral (Fla.)
Prisoner of War
Service Related Injury
Good Conduct Medal; Navy Achievement Medal; National Defense Service Medal; Humanitarian Service Medal; Navy Battle Efficiency Ribbon; Navy Unit Citation; Sea Service Ribbon; Submarine Warfare Insignia; Fleet Ballistic Missile Patrol Pin
The veteran served as: Polaris Missile Control Center Supervisor; Alteration Planning Group Leading Petty Officer; Telemetry Supervisor; Regimental Adjutant at Officer Candidate School; Assistant Weapons Officer; Missile Division Officer; Launcher Division Officer; Sonar Officer; First Lieutenant; Damage Control Officer; Engineer Officer; Operations Officer; Navigation Officer; Telemetry Officer; Flight Safety Officer.
The veteran completed a BS in Mathematics and General Science on active duty in his spare time from Rollins College Patrick AFB Extension through the Navy's Program for Afloat College Education. Schools on his transcripts: Keene State College, University of New Hampshire, Boston University, Harvard, University of Washington Seattle, University of California Berkley, University of Guam, Chapman College and Rollins College. More service details: USS Thomas A. Edison home ported at Groton, CT but operated from Rota, Spain; USS Proteus home ported at Guam; USS Tecumseh home ported at Charleston, SC but operated from Holy Lock, Scotland; USS Grayback home ported at Subic Bay, Philippines; USNS Range Sentinel home ported at Cape Canaveral, FL. Cold War Polaris patrols in the Mediterranean Sea; Poseidon patrols in the Greenland - Iceland - UK Gap, USS Grayback operations all over WESTPAC. More medal details: Good Conduct Medal (2); Navy Achievement Medal (3); National Defense Service Medal; Humanitarian Service Medal; Navy Battle Efficiency Ribbon (3); Navy Unit Citation; Sea Service Ribbon (3); Submarine Warfare Insignia (enlisted and officer); Fleet Ballistic Missile Patrol Pin (8).
City of Birth
Country of Birth
Location of Interview
University of Central Florida
Baird, Malcom E.; Cold War -- Personal Narratives; United States. Navy
Contains logs, audio and video recordings of interviews with Central Florida's veterans as part of a history class project for the students at the University of Central Florida (UCF). The UCF Community Veterans History Project(CVHP) started in fall 2010. It collects, preserves, and makes accessible to the public the experiences of Central Florida's veterans so that future generations will better understand the realities of conflict. It is a collaborative endeavor supported by multiple departments and offices at UCF. The veterans' histories are archived and made digitally available through the UCF library and selected materials are contributed to the Veterans History Project at the Library of Congress.
Contributor Affiliation / Organization
RICHES University of Central Florida
Length of Interview
Department of History, University of Central Florida
All rights are held by the respective holding institution. This material is posted publicly for non-profit educational uses, excluding printed publication. For permission to reproduce and/or for copyright information contact Special Collections and University Archives, University of Central Florida Libraries, (407) 823-2576. http://library.ucf.edu/about/departments/special-collections-university-archives/
University of Central Florida Libraries, Special Collections & University Archives
UCF Community Veterans History Project
Central Florida, RICHES, "Baird, Malcom E. interview" (2018). Veterans Oral Histories. 592.