Treed Operator Gets Grounded
1333RD BU, ASSAM - S/Sgt. Jacob Rabatin, Jr., has been "grounded."
When Rabatin came to this base back in March, 1943, he was appointed the field's first
"control tower operator." It was a nice setup. His would be strictly a daytime job. His control tower afforded plenty
of fresh air and sunshine.
On the other hand, it wasn't such a nice job. For one thing, the tower was located in the
lofty branches of a tall tree. Four times a day, at least, he had to climb a ladder up the tree's trunk. During the
monsoon, his office had altogether too much running water. The field was doing lots of business, too. ATC cargo planes
and a B-24 outfit made an average of 100 landings per day. An then, of course, there were the Japs.
Bu that was all long ago. Today, at his new desk in a modern glass-enclosed tower in the
operations building, Rabatin is a happier man. He's working a regular six-hour shift. The danger of enemy bombing has
been eliminated. There's no more tree climbing. And, best of all, he's up for rotation.