Picture of Beau Broomall

Fred "Beau" Broomall

NBAer/Farfaner 1956 - 1958

Life after Farfan

Although I lived in Oxford Pennsylvania when I joined the Navy and was only 15 miles from Bainbridge the Navy thought it wise to send me to Norfolk Virginia for Class A Radioman School.

My darling Betty had asked her parents if we could marry when I came home on leave and she would continue her Senior year at Oxford High. The main reason was that she would be able to follow me to my duty station. Her parents said no. So what did she do? She ran away from home but notified her parents as soon as she arrived in Norfolk. We were married soon after she arrived with her parents consent.

I graduated fifth in my class from "A" school. Three billets came in for shore duty. Two for Panama and one for Gtmo. As luck would have it the first guy chose the Rhine River Patrol, Second chose submarine duty out of Connecticut. The fourth guy chose Gtmo then lucky me I got the first Panama billet.

When I arrived at Headquarters they said there was no use in giving me liberty as they just shot the President of Panama. After a few days I was transferred to Farfan.

As you all know this was great duty and I couldn't have been happier as my darling Betty joined me a month later. My son was born there so he holds duel citizenship. It was a great honeymoon for us and we enjoyed Farfan very much. We lived off base in Cocoli in a nice little apartment.

Just wanted to fill in the background on Farfan before I launch into the life after. So here goes.

My discharge date came up in October 1958 and was assigned transportation aboard the USNS Gothels. The President of the Fleet Reserve Association called me the night before we were to leave and asked if I had my cabin assignment. I told him yes that it was on C deck. He said okay. I didn't think much of it then but after boarding I found out that I had a cabin with my wife and son with private bath and port hole. I had done a few magic shows for the Fleet Reserve and I guess he pulled some strings to get me that choice cabin. I only had to wear my uniform at evening meals and no duties to perform. I did feel a little guilty being on the same deck with all the officers - but not for long.

Word came to us the next morning that travel across the Isthmus might be difficult as the President of Panama had just been shot. Wow! What can I say about that?

I was discharged at the Brooklyn Naval Shipyard and headed home to Oxford PA. I got my old job back at J. J. Newberry's 5&10 as stock boy. It paid $35 a week. The same as I would have gotten if I taken unemployment.

I knew this was a dead end job but after all I had a wife and son to provide for.

I applied for a job with Western Union and was accepted. They sent me to Washington NJ for schooling. This was worse than the military. You could not have your car there, you were assigned to a room in a house ruled by a little old lady that would squeal on you for any infractions of the rules. You could also not go into any bar. Wow! Not used to that one. I was half way through schooling when I received an offer from the Navy to work at NSS Cheltenham MD. I jumped at that and left Western Union before they gave me a bus ticket and a bicycle.

I worked at NSS for six years as a service clerk reworking messages and was at this dead end job again. No room for advancement.

I heard that the Federal Communications Commission was looking for Federal Agents with experience in communications so I applied and got the position. I was sent to Fort Lauderdale Florida for training and later transferred to Puerto Rico for duty. I spent fourteen months in Puerto Rico Working out of the Federal Building in Old San Juan. Later I worked at the Naval Direction Finding Site at Sabana Seca. I worked there for fourteen months then was transferred to Chillicothe Ohio for duty. I was there for ten years until its closure in 1976 and then transferred to Livermore CA. I spent sixteen and a half years at Livermore until I took retirement in 1992. It was either stay In Livermore and work or retire and move out of California. I chose to leave and we moved to the Pensacola Florida area.

I had always done some magic and was bitten by the bug when I was 10 years old so it was easy transition for me to make it my profession in retirement life. I am still working as a professional magician and can't believe people will pay me to do something I like to do so much.

My wife, Betty, passed away on April 6, 2014, so my magic has given me that much needed something to do. If you like you can go to my website at

Beau's Magic website banner

for a look see.

This is my story.

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