1928-1936 — Annapolis, Philadelphia &amp; Pensacola
Floyd Bruce Parks enlisted in the Navy in 1928 and served two years as a sailor aboard destroyers; he received an appointment to the U.S. Naval Academy in 1930. More interested in reading Colliers and Saturday Evening Post than textbooks, Parks earned the infamous Black "N," a dubious award given for major infractions, on a number of occasions. He was part of the Midshipman Choir and played on Annapolis' water polo team, as well as participating in intramural football & swimming. Parks graduated in the upper third of his class of 1934, earning him the choice of a commission in the Navy or Marine Corps. He was appointed a Second Lieutenant in the Marine Corps on June 1 of that year. He was assigned to the Philadelphia Navy Yard for a year before he joined the cruiser USS ASTORIA (CA-34). In May 1936 he reported to NAS Pensacola, Florida for flight training. While swimming in theGulf of Mexico Parks, aided by an enlisted man, rescued a private from drowning and won the commendation of his superior officers for "quick action, good judgment and swimming ability".