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A Tanker's Christmas Story

adapted by Red Thomas

T'was the night before defense and all through the tank,
not a crewman was stirring so there wasn't a clank.
Our ammo was stowed in the turret with care,
In hopes that some targets soon would be there.
The crewman were sleeping out on the back deck,
I pulled the first watch, figured oh what the heck.
CO's in his HUMVEE and I'm on the steel,
I'm watching our sector cause I know the deal.

When out in the EA there arose such a clatter,
I went to my sight to see what's the matter.
To TRP RED I slewed like a flash,
Flipped it off stand-by (this sight's worth the cash).
When the thermal cut on with it's eerie green glow,
Gave the luster of midday to objects below.
When what to my wondering eyes did appear,
But an M60 tank I could see quite clear.
With a crusty old TC so lively and quick,
I could tell in a moment it must be St. Nick.

Now faster than lightening in a dust cloud he came,
He cursed and he shouted and called out some names: Now Sherman!
Now Stewart! Now Abrams and Patton!
On Walker! On Christie! On Pershing and Lee!
To the top of the hill we're in some soft dirt,
If I throw a track the driver gets hurt.
As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle they blew right on by.
So up to the hill top from the backside he drew,
With a tank full of Class VI, and St. Nicholas too.
And then in a twinkling on my turret roof,
the old man sat down and let out an oof.
As I drew in my head and was turning around,

Down through the hatch came St. Nick with a bound.
From his old black beret to his Graff jacket worn,
you could tell he's a tanker since the day he was born.
A bundle of FMs he had flung on his back,
He looked like a Mike Golf just opening his pack.
St. Nick is a tanker, in this I have faith,
He reeked of old diesel, had grease on his face.
His demeanor was rude his clothes were a mess,
When his boots last saw polish was anyone's guess.
A cigarette butt is held tight in his teeth,
If I tell him to lose it I might get some grief.
His moustache was too long, it's not by the Reg.
This crusty old Mike Golf sure looked like a dreg.
He was filthy, ill mannered, but a happy old self,
And I knew he would help me in spite of myself.

A wink of his eye and a look in my sight,
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to fright.
He spoke not a word but went right to his work,
Boresighted my tank, said "Your gunner's a jerk."
And laying a wrench aside of his nose,
And giving a nod out of the hatch he rose.
He sprang to his copula, gave his driver a curse,
And away his tank roared like he'd just stole a purse.
But I heard him exclaim as he roared ought of sight,
Merry Christmas to all and to all...

WHAT ARE YOU ............


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Last modified date and time: 02/14/2016 17:52