Bill Amborn was at TDC during 1963-64 and provided this account of Typhoon Gloria:
I was assigned to TDC from the States and arrived as a PFC in the army in late August 1963. I was billeted at Yangmingshan first. I took a few snapshots of the TDC compound during Typhoon Gloria as I was in it those few days. I just ran across the photos which I'd sent to my parents.
Being the new guy in my unit I was one of three of us to stay in the compound in our little office during the typhoon. The photointerpreters, part of J2, were downstairs and boy, did we get flooded. As the water started coming up we put sandbags outside the steel door leading out and sat around and played cards.
Later the water began gushing in above the sandbags and we got concerned about the thousands and thousands of maps we had of all of China and started to remove them from the lower shelves and put them up higher. While we were casually working on this activity we heard a violent snapping sound and saw that the water pressure had bent the door. Water was coming in like gang busters. So we started scurrying as fast as we could bringing all the maps and tons of classified stuff upstairs. The water kept coming up. Then it became obvious we were being weighed down by our fatigues so we stripped to underwear and continued. Some of the duty people upstairs thought we were mad men. Then the power went out and we had a few flashlights, etc, by which we kept carrying the equiment and papers upstairs.
In the end, before we had to stop, we were up to our shoulders in that wonderful, muddy water. We saved everything needed to keep us operating after the clean-up and got the normal thanks for a job well done (nada).
Then the C-rations ran low and we had to go to one of the warehouses to get them. So we peons stripped down to our scivvies and formed a line of guys to walk wherever we were led. That way if the first guy fell in a hole or something, the second guy would know where it was. Like walking in a mine field. We got our boxes and carried them like you see African ladies carrying items - on our heads - because the water was up to our necks. And so we traipsed back across. During the walk back guys started talking about all the poisonous snakes and wondering (a) could snakes swim and (b) what's that over there?
Since stressful situations bring out the best and worst in us, one could expect being stuck in a building for a bit would do just that. Sure enough, one of the officers was found to be stealing all the C-ration cookies. That really got some of the guys hot and required some higher rank to assure us cookies would be equitably distributed.
Like everyone who went to Taiwan, I have a ton of memories, but the strongest one still is of walking over the bridge from TDC to Club 63 with Billy Cowan (Air Force) and Larry Dugan (Navy) and Billy telling us that Kennedy had just been shot.