This is the story of my life so far: 68 years and counting.
Prequel: A Brief History of my Family in France
CGO on the Corvette Jean de Vienne
On November 1982, I was posted on the Corvette Jean de Vienne that was going to start her trials at sea in Brest.
Note: I have been saying that the "Georges Leygues" and the "Jean de Vienne" were Corvettes, while they are called now called Frigates. This is because they were initially called Corvettes, then later Frigates.
On the Jean de Vienne, I was the "Chef du Groupement Opérations" (Operations Group Leader), in short the CGO.
As the ship was not yet in service, the "operations" were initially the trials at sea.
My job was mostly to organize the trials with the shipyard.
As I had already been on two other new ships (Frigate Tourville and Corvette Georges Leygues) during their trials at sea, I had some ideas on the things we should do or not do during these trials.
Each trial usually involved several participants or group of participants, in different places on the ship and/or on shore. So, it always involved communication to coordinate the trial.
We would take each trial and split it in several individual event. Each of these event would be given a number, and the list of the events were distributed to each group of participants.
To perform the trial, from the bridge of the ship, we would indicate the event number before each event.
We would try to perform the different events in the same order as they had been distributed.
Sometimes, we would skip some of the events, and sometimes too we would add additional events during the trial it self.
But, when adding an event during the trial, we would give it a number that was not in the original list of event. In no case we would change the characteristics of an event in the list during the trial.
I had seen this done on the Georges Leygues and it always made the trials very chaotic.
Because this was the fourth Corvette of the series, the trials at sea were not as long as the one for the Georges Leygues, the first of its class.
The computer system of the Jean de Vienne was the same as the one of the Georges Leygues, but we discovered some problem with the computer officer.
Continue to Part 72
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