The morning of Day 7 was spent at the minute-man missile silo. When I was in the USCG from 1977 to 1981 I was stationed at an Omega station in Lamoure, North Dakota from June, 1979 to June 1981. The first day off I had a took a drive in the countryside and looked at the endless sea of green: wheat and sunflowers. I saw this gravel area that was surrounded by a triple fence and had this big concrete patio in the middle. There were little blue signs on the fence that said “SAC”. The area around the fence was mowed, so I walked around the perimeter to look at it. A while later I saw this blue crew cab pickup pull up next to my car. Four guys got out wearing dark blue uniforms and carrying M16s. Two stayed by the truck, one went over to my car, and one walked to about twenty feet away from me. The guy that approached me asked me politely what I was doing. I said just looking around. He then told me that I was on a military installation and that I was welcome to look all I wanted from the road but would I please leave the immediate area now. The sight of four automatic weapons put me in a most agreeable mood
, and I said I was already on my way out. All of the guys back at the Omega station had a good laugh at my expense when I relayed this experience later; I had no idea what I was looking at.
I am glad my son got to see this when there are so many fewer missiles in service. I hope it stays that way, although the desire of man to destroy his neighbor never seems to diminish. In a lot of ways I think the world is more uncertain than when I was in elementary school in the early 1960s learning to “duck and cover.”
The afternoon was spent hiking. The evening brought a thunderstorm and lots of rain.