UNSUNG HEROES

ArtistBob Cole
Writer: Mike Koulermos

The Radiomen of the US Navy were responsible for maintaining the Navy's communications systems onboard ships, aircraft and at shore facilities. This was done utilizing various frequencies in the ELF, VLF, LF, MF, HF, VHF, UHF, SHF and EHF spectrums. The type of circuits maintained included voice and data circuits between the ships of a battle group and allied units. Their duties also included message systems for generalized broadcasts and unit specific messages that were handled based on message priority and handling procedures. They were also responsible for the proper handling and destruction of classified material.Radiomen were also responsible for periodic maintenance of the communications equipment, to include transmitters, receivers and antennas.
The positions in a ship's 'Radio Shack' included:
• Broadcast Operator: Responsible for keeping track of incoming and outgoing message traffic.
• Task Group Orestes (TGO) Operator: Responsible for the operation of a teletypewriter circuit.
• Message Center, Main-Communications (MAINCOMM) Supervisor: Responsible for the supervision of the message center.
• Facilities Control (FACCON) Supervisor: Responsible for the supervision of the facilities control area. 
• Inbound/Outbound Traffic Checker: Responsible for ensuring that all accountability of all message traffic reached appropriate designated departments.
• Repro/Distro Operator: Responsible for ensuring routed messages were appropriately slotted to the various departments shipboard.
• CRYPTO Operator: Responsible for ensuring that the cryptographic equipment is in good working order.