This is what it looked like the very first day I saw my silo. All I really wanted to do was climb back into the truckand pretend I never saw that fateful article about a man who lived under the Kansas Prairie. I got over it, ok.
The following year in spring saw no improvement in the condition of the surface. All my efforts where concentrated deep in the underworld, trying to at least create a clean and safe environment to work.
In the Spring of ‘98, we finally started the excavations to bring power, water, and communications from the existing pumphouse to the Launch Control Center. It was a relatively easy dig, considering the entire platform was constructed from fill that was excavated from the silo.
I‘ve spoken to many of the locals who were involved in the construction of this silo, and the one thing they all had in common, was that they were surprised to have survived. It was a mammoth task, but especially for Bouquet 556.
All silos were built from a template design, and so regardless of where any one silo was located, the layout, specification, building process and time frame always remained the same. So, it didn’t much matter if the silo was located on the banks of Lake Champlain (in mud), or as with Bouquet 556, on the ledge of a solid granite mountain. In the early ‘60s, work safety was about as popular as a profylactic at Woodstock, and so many lost their lives, and hundreds were injured, but the work never stopped. For 24/7, come rain or snow, the twelve silos surrounding Plattsburgh Airforce (equal in height to a 17 storey building) were completed in just over a year.
In October of ‘98, fourteen of my friends joined me for my 40th. Read all about it in a True Story!
You can see how it wasn’t long since the trenches had been filled, and the original (but destroyed) door had just been replaced with awire reinforced glass and steel frame door.
This photo was taken (believe it or not) after a major clean-out of the stair. The endless tons of rubbish that was removed from the LCC, was either dumped temporarily in the silo, or hauled up via this stairwell.