Veterans Interview: Former Seattle Seahawk Dennis Boyd talks with Chief Warrant Officer Alvin Overacker, a 23-year veteran of the U.S. Army, at Patriot’s Landing in DuPont, Washington. Overacker served in World War II, at the recruiting station in Seattle, and in the Army Counter Intelligence Corps.
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*The following is the output of transcribing from an audio recording. Although the transcription is largely accurate, in some cases it is incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors.
And now back to answers for elders as we honor our military veterans. Careage is the proud sponsor of our veteran segment hosted by former Seattle Seahawk Dennis Boyd. Hello, this is Dennis Boyd for answers for elders. We are here in Dupont Washington today at Patriots landing. They have a chance to talk to chief foreign officer, Alvin Overarcher. Tell us it’s about your your service here to the country. My ill. I was drafted in nineteen forty two. Got Out of the service after the war. Nineteen forty six. Domestic problems arose and I had thought I would go to college, but instead I went back in the army recruiting station in Seattle. They said we want to keep you here. Okay, so I spent four years on recruiting in the Seattle, Tacoma, Aberdeen Centralia area and while there I learned about the armies counter intelligence corps. When I finished my four years, at that time that was a limit. After I’ve finished my four years of recruiting duty, I applied for the armies counter intelligence corps and it’s been the rest of my career. With the army counter intelligence core. I became a light detector examiner with him and one of my most stressful of assignments, with three and a half years in Washington DC as the light detector examiner. I survived that. You got out of the service with twenty three and a half years service. said, okay, excuse me, and if tell me a little bit about you were saying that. So this was in nineteen, forty six and forty seven. So is that correct? You were with the counterintelligence? No, no, no. I got out of the army in one thousand nine hundred and forty six and domestic difficulties arose and we came back in the army. They decided they wanted me at the recruiting station. So I spent four years on recruiting duty. That was took us up to fifty. In one thousand nine hundred and fifty. I had learned about the Army Counter Intelligence Corps. I applied, was accepted, went to their school, went through a six month language and area study school. After that study in German. Met My wife there. She worked at the headquarters while I was going to school. She was in the service. We married before I went to my assignment in Salzburg, Austria, I was able to get her over on orders three months later. So we had a daughter born to us in Austria. Came back to Washington state. I was assigned to Fort Lewis Again, still doing counter intelligence work and wearing civilian clothes, documented as a civilian. That was not always good but worked out. So when you were stationed here at Fort Lewis, do you remember how long you were here at Fort Louis? Two and a half years, I guess. Okay, and then they wanted me to go to them. I said no, thank you, I’m retiring. If I didn’t retire then I would have to go in definite and I didn’t. For some reason didn’t want to go to be yet NAM because a man had been my driver at Fort Lewis went over first trip out in a helicopter. One bullet hit that plane. No, it hit him in the head first trip. I felt badly about going and I got out of the service, out of the uniformed army. Nobody beat a trail to my door to hire me, but I went back to work for the army as a Serbin in different field of study, management, analyst, feeling a manpower and I did that for about sixteen years so before finally retiring, fully retiring. You had mentioned that Washington DC was a stressful time. Well, I detector work is it’s excellent, but only as good as the operator. I think I did a good job. I went to the school. One person had to run a real examination at graduation time. I was selected to do that. I was a bit nervous. We had fifteen students for instructors in the observation are my first case. Anyway, it worked out very well. And and Oh, in DC most of our lie detector work was screening personnel with the Signal Corps. Once in a while we get a complaint, complaint case where been an allegation made some sort and they wanted us to say that but individual was telling the truth or not. Most cases we never knew the result of what our reports caused to happen. I work one case for State Department. That was a very, very stressful case because the EEF of state departments security was in the observation room and I was in examination room with the subject of the case. His life was a man a massive emotional crises like beads on a necklace. He was born to a born to a southern minister. Doesn’t say that’s bad, but in this case everything the sun did reflected badly on the man. Never should have been employed by the government, but we spent the morning. He was the only man I ever had feint on me during an examination. I don’t imagine that that was intended as deception, but rather too much for the men, bringing back too many memories. And yet his clear from plaint was he could not remember. I’m getting away from my story. I know I could talk about the state of Washington. I’m a native Washingtonian, by the way. You mentioned that. Tell us what you where? Your hometown is. Born in thriving metropolis of Golden Dale. There you go, this county seat of Clicket County. A graduate of Clicket high school, after which I worked in post office and I went to work for Boeing. I went to work for a lumber mill in Ridgefield and was drafted into the army. That started everything. You and I had a conversation prior to this about monuments. He said that the Merry Hill Museum close to golden well, the Merry Hill Museum is close to Golden Bell. It’s about thirteen miles south, right on the Columbia River, and the Merry Hill Museum is a gem out there in the boonies. Everyone, certainly all the people in Washington state, should go to that museum and see for what it is. I was there on the third of November nineteen twenty six as a four and a half year old boy when Queen Marie of Romania dedicated the building as a museum. Well, I was there sixty years later one or daughter reddicated the building. is so much everyone should see that museum. And a couple miles east of the museum is the replica of Stonehenge, which was constructed as a memorial to the, I believe it was seven county residents who were killed in World War One. If there’s anything else I be happy to speak about it will chief the you have done an amazing job and I wanted to take this time to thank you for your service. And you kind of flew under the the radar a little bit there. You were registered as a civilian but still doing military work with through the military. Yeah, it is. That’s right. Yeah, makes up with humorous thing all this time wearing civilian clothes. Documented as a civilian, I had to maintain my uniforms. I wound up with lots of uniform and later on I went to work as a cervid in at Fort Louis. They opened the Fort Louis Museum and some time later announced that they needed something. They needed some khaki colored men’s boxer shorts, three button tie at the side, shorts, underwear. They couldn’t find any any place and other military museums were looking also. I said Hey, I had eight sets that had never been worn. So my my claim to fame is that I have something it most military museums in the United States a pair of shorts with my lawn remark on well, chief, thank you very much again. It was a pleasure getting a chance to talk to you and meet you and your family has to be very proud of your service and there are things that you can’t talk about, but it was very important work at the time. Are It. I’ve enjoyed this good I really have a pleasure to deal with your people. All right, thank you very much. You Bet. This has been a special honoring veterans. Presentation of answers for elders brought to you by carriage for more information about Careage. The website is Careage.com.
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Originally published December 14, 2017