Fireman 1st Class US Navy Missing in Action or Buried at Sea
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Fireman 1st Class US Navy Missing in Action or Buried at Sea
USS Philadelphia (CL-41), a Brooklyn class light cruiser of the United States Navy. She was the fifth ship named for Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. In the 1950s, she was commissioned into the Brazilian Navy as Almirante Barroso.
Philadelphia was laid down on 28 May 1935 at the Philadelphia Navy Yard; launched on 17 November 1936; sponsored by Mrs. George H. Earle, first lady of Pennsylvania; and commissioned at Philadelphia on 23 September 1937, Captain Jules James in command.Contents
Philadelphia called at Charleston, South Carolina on 30 April and hosted President Franklin Delano Roosevelt the first week of May for a cruise in Caribbean waters. The President debarked at Charleston on 8 May, and Philadelphia resumed operations with Cruiser Division 8 (CruDiv 8) off the Atlantic coast. She was designated flagship of Rear Admiral F.A. Todd, Commander CruDiv 8 (ComCruDiv 8), Battle Force on 27 June. In the following months, she called at principal ports of the West Indies, and at New York, Boston, and Norfolk, Virginia.
Transiting the Panama Canal on 1 June 1939, Philadelphia joined CruDiv 8 in San Pedro, California on 18 June for Pacific coastal operations. She departed Los Angeles, California on 2 April 1940 for Pearl Harbor, where she engaged in fleet maneuvers until May 1941.
In September 1940, fifteen of the ship's African American mess men wrote an open letter to a newspaper protesting the treatment of African Americans in the Navy. "We sincerely hope to discourage any other colored boys who might have planned to join the Navy and make the same mistake we did. All they would become is seagoing bell hops, chambermaids and dishwashers," they wrote. On publication of the letter, the fifteen were confined to the brig. They were later dishonorably discharged. The incident drew protests from hundreds of mess men on other ships as well as anger in the African American community, and led to a series of meetings between Roosevelt and NAACP leaders A. Philip Randolph and Walter White to discuss partial desegregation of the armed forces.
Philadelphia stood out of Pearl Harbor on 22 May 1941 to resume Atlantic operations, arriving Boston on 18 June. At this point, she commenced Neutrality Patrol operations, steaming as far south as Bermuda and as far north as Halifax, Nova Scotia. She entered Boston Navy Yard on 25 November for upkeep, and was in repair status there when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor.World War II 1942
11 days after the Japanese attack, Philadelphia steamed for exercises in Casco Bay, after which she joined two destroyers for anti-submarine patrol to NS Argentia, Newfoundland. Returning to New York on 14 February 1942, she made two escort runs to Hafnarfjörður, Iceland. She then joined units of Task Force 22 (TF 22) at Norfolk on 16 May, departing two days later for an anti-submarine warfare sweep to the Panama Canal.
She then returned to New York, only to depart on 1 July as an escort unit for a convoy bound for Greenock, Scotland. The middle of August found her escorting a second convoy to Greenock. Returning to Norfolk on 15 September, she joined Rear Admiral H. Kent Hewitt’s Western Naval Task Force.
This force was to land some 35,000 troops and 250 tanks of General George Patton's Western Task Force at three different points on the Atlantic coast of French Morocco. Philadelphia became flagship of Rear Admiral Lyal A. Davidson, commanding the Southern Attack Group. which was to carry 6,423 troops under Major General Ernest N. Harmon, with 108 tanks, to the landing at Safi, Morocco, about 140 mi (220 km) south of Casablanca.
Philadelphia's task group departed Norfolk on 24 October and set course as if bound for the British Isles. The entire Western Naval Task Force, consisting of 102 ships and spanning an ocean area some 20 × 40 mi (30 × 60 km), combined 450 mi (720 km) off Cape Race on 28 October. It was the greatest war fleet sent forth by the United States at the time.
The task force swept northward on 6 November, thence changed course toward the Straits of Gibraltar. But after dark, a southeasterly course was plotted towards Casablanca, and shortly before midnight on 7 November, three separate task groups closed three different points on the Moroccan coast.
Philadelphia took up its fire support station as the transports offloaded troops in the early morning darkness of 8 November. Shore batteries opened fire at 0428, and within two minutes Philadelphia joined New York in bombardment of Batterie Railleuse which, with four 6 in (130 mm) guns, was the strongest defense unit in the Safi area. Later in the morning, Philadelphia bombarded a battery of three 6.1 in (150 mm) guns about 3 mi (5 km) south of Safi.
Spotter planes from the cruiser also got into the act by flying close support missions. One of Philadelphia's aircraft discovered and bombed a Vichy French submarine on 9 November in the vicinity of Cape Kantin. The next day, the Vichy submarine Medeuse, one of eight that had sortied from Casablanca, was sighted down by the stern and listing badly to port, beached at Mazagan, north of Cape Blanco. Thought to be the same submarine previously attacked off Cape Kantin, Medeuse was again spotted by a plane from Philadelphia and was subsequently bombed.1943
Departing Safi on 13 November, Philadelphia returned to New York on 24 November. Operating from that port until 11 March 1943, she assisted in escorting two convoys to Casablanca. She then joined Rear Admiral Alan G. Kirk’s TF 85 for training in Chesapeake Bay preparatory to the invasion of Sicily.
A convoy escorted by Philadelphia and nine destroyers sortied from Norfolk on 8 June and arrived Oran, Algeria on 22 June, where final invasion staging operations took place. The convoy stood out from Oran on 5 July, and arrived off the beaches of Scoglitti, Sicily shortly before midnight of 9 July. Philadelphia assisted in furnishing covering bombardment as the troops of Major General Troy Middleton’s 45th Infantry Division stormed ashore. By 15 July, she had joined the gunfire support group off Porto Empedocle, where her guns were put to good use.
Philadelphia took departure from her gunfire support area on 19 July and steamed to Algiers, where she became flagship of Rear Admiral L. A. Davidson’s Support Force. This TF 88 was formed on 27 July and given the mission of the defense of Palermo, gunfire support to the Seventh Army’s advance along the coast, provision of amphibious craft for "leap frog" landings behind enemy lines, and ferry duty for heavy artillery, supplies, and vehicles to relieve congestion on the railway and the single coastal road. Philadelphia, Savannah, and six destroyers entered the harbor at Palermo on 30 July and the next day commenced bombardment of the batteries near San Stefano di Camatra.
Action in the area of Palermo continued until 21 August, when Philadelphia steamed for Algiers. During her operations in support of the invasion of Sicily, the cruiser had provided extensive gunfire support and, in beating off several hostile air attacks, had splashed a total of six aircraft. She touched at Oran, departing on 5 September en route to Salerno.
Her convoy entered the Gulf of Salerno a few hours before midnight of 8 September 1943. Philadelphia's real work began off the Salerno beaches at 0943 the next day, when she commenced shore bombardment. When one of her scouting planes spotted 35 German tanks concealed in a thicket adjacent to Red Beach, Philadelphia's guns took them under fire and destroyed seven of them before they escaped to the rear.
Philadelphia narrowly evaded a glide bomb on 11 September, although several of her crew were injured when the bomb exploded. While bombarding targets off Aropoli on 15 September, the cruiser downed one of 12 attacking planes and assisted in driving off a second air attack the same day in the vicinity of Altavilla. She downed two more hostile aircraft on 17 September and cleared the gunfire support area that night, bound for Bizerte, Tunisia. After upkeep at Gibraltar, Philadelphia departed Oran, Algeria on 6 November as part of the escort for a convoy which arrived at Hampton Roads on 21 November.1944
Philadelphia underwent overhaul at New York and then engaged in refresher training in Chesapeake waters until 19 January 1944, when she steamed from Norfolk as an escorting unit for a convoy arriving Oran, Algeria on 30 January.
Philadelphia joined the gunfire support ships off Anzio on 14 February and provided support for the advancing ground troops through 23 May.On this same day she collided with the USS Laub (DD-613). She then sailed to the British naval yard at Malta where repairs to her bow were affected. After overhaul at Malta, she joined Admiral C. F. Bryant’s Task Group 85.12 (TG 85.12) at Taranto, Italy. The cruiser served as one of the escorting units for the group, which reached the Gulf of Saint-Tropez, France on 15 August. At 0640, she teamed with Texas and Nevada and, with other support ships, they closed the beaches and provided counter-battery fire. By 0815, the bombardment had destroyed enemy defenses and Major General William W. Eagles’ famed "Thunderbirds" of the 45th Army Infantry Division landed without opposition.
After replenishing ammunition at Propriano, Corsica on 17 August, Philadelphia provided gunfire support to the French army troops on the western outskirts of Toulon. Four days later, her commanding officer, Captain Walter A. Ansel, accepted the surrender of the fortress islands of Pomeques, Château d'If, and Ratonneau in the Bay of Marseilles. After gunfire support missions off Nice, she departed Naples on 20 October and returned to Philadelphia, Pa., arriving on 6 November.1945
Philadelphia underwent overhaul at the Philadelphia Navy Yard and then refresher training in the West Indies, returning to Norfolk, Virginia on 4 June 1945. She steamed for Antwerp, Belgium on 7 July, acting as escort for Augusta which had embarked President Harry S. Truman and his party, including Secretary of State Byrnes and Fleet Admiral William D. Leahy. Arriving Antwerp on 15 July, the President departed Augusta and was flown to the Potsdam Conference. Before the conference ended, Philadelphia proceeded to Plymouth, England to await return of the President.
On 2 August, Philadelphia rendered honors to King George VI, who visited President Truman in Augusta. The ships departed that same day and Philadelphia arrived Norfolk, Virginia on 7 August.Post-war
Philadelphia stood out of Narragansett Bay for Southampton, England on 6 September, returning on 25 September as escort for the former German liner Europa. After operations in Narragansett Bay and in Chesapeake Bay, she arrived Philadelphia on 26 October. Steaming for Le Havre, France on 14 November, she embarked Army passengers for the return to New York on 29 November. She made another "Magic Carpet" run from New York to Le Havre and return from 5 to 25 December, and arrived at Philadelphia for inactivation on 9 January 1946.Brazilian Navy
Philadelphia decommissioned in the Philadelphia Navy Yard on 3 February 1947. Struck from the Naval Vessel Register on 9 January 1951, she was sold to the government of Brazil under terms of the Mutual Defense Assistance Program. She served in the Brazilian Navy under the name Barroso (C–11) and was scrapped in 1973.Awards
The first USS Juneau (CL-52) was a United States Navy Atlanta-class light cruiser sunk at the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal in November 1942. In total 687 men, including the five Sullivan brothers, were killed in action as a result of its sinking. She was laid down by Federal Shipbuilding Company, Kearny, New Jersey, on 27 May 1940, launched on 25 October 1941, sponsored by Mrs. Harry I. Lucas, wife of the mayor of the city of Juneau, Alaska, and commissioned on 14 February 1942, Captain Lyman K. Swenson in command.
Following a hurried shakedown cruise along the Atlantic coast in the spring of 1942, Juneau assumed blockade patrol in early May off Martinique and Guadeloupe Islands to prevent the escape of Vichy French Naval units. She returned to New York to complete alterations and operated in the North Atlantic and Caribbean from 1 June to 12 August on patrol and escort duties. The cruiser departed for the Pacific Theater on 22 August.
After stopping briefly at the Tonga Islands and New Caledonia, she rendezvoused on 10 September with Task Force 18 (TF 18) under the command of Rear Admiral Leigh Noyes, flying his flag on Wasp. The following day TF 17, which included Hornet, combined with Admiral Noyes' unit to form TF 61, whose mission was to ferry fighter aircraft to Guadalcanal. On 15 September, Wasp took three torpedo hits from the Japanese submarine I-19, and, with fires raging out of control, was sunk at 2100 by Lansdowne. Juneau and screen destroyers rescued 1,910 survivors of Wasp and returned them to Espiritu Santo, New Hebrides on 16 September. The next day, the fast cruiser rejoined TF 17. Operating with the Hornet group, she supported three actions that repulsed enemy thrusts at Guadalcanal: the Buin-Fasi-Tonolai Raid; the Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands; and the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal (Third Savo).
Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands
The ship's first major action was the Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands on 26 October. On 24 October, Hornet's task force had combined with Enterprise group to reform TF 61 under the command of Rear Admiral Thomas C. Kinkaid. This force positioned itself north of the Santa Cruz Islands in order to intercept enemy units that might attempt to close Guadalcanal. Meanwhile, on Guadalcanal, the Japanese achieved a breakthrough along Lunga Ridge on the night of 25 October. That success evidently was a signal for enemy surface units to approach the island.
Early on the morning of 26 October, US carrier planes uncovered the enemy force and immediately attacked it, damaging two Japanese carriers, one battleship, and three cruisers. But while American aircraft were locating and engaging the enemy, American ships were also under fire. Shortly after 1000, some 27 enemy aircraft attacked Hornet. Though Juneau and other screen ships threw up an effective AA barrage which splashed about 20 of the attackers, Hornet was badly damaged and sank the next day. Just before noon, Juneau left Hornet's escort for the beleaguered Enterprise group several miles away. Adding her firepower, Juneau assisted in repulsing four enemy attacks on this force and splashing 18 Japanese planes.
That evening the American forces retired to the southeast. Although the battle had been costly, it – combined with the Marine victory on Guadalcanal – turned back the attempted Japanese parry in the Solomons. Furthermore, the damaging of two Japanese carriers sharply curtailed the air cover available to the enemy in the subsequent Naval Battle of Guadalcanal.
On 8 November, Juneau departed Nouméa, New Caledonia as a unit of TF 67 under the command of Rear Admiral Richmond K. Turner to escort reinforcements to Guadalcanal. The force arrived there early morning on 12 November, and Juneau took up her station in the protective screen around the transports and cargo vessels. Unloading proceeded unmolested until 1405, when 30 Japanese planes attacked the alerted United States group. The AA fire was effective, and Juneau alone accounted for six enemy torpedo bombers shot down. The few remaining Japanese planes were in turn attacked by American fighters; only one bomber escaped. Later in the day, an American attack group of cruisers and destroyers cleared Guadalcanal on reports that a large enemy surface force was headed for the island. At 0148 on 13 November, Rear Admiral Daniel J. Callaghan's relatively small Landing Support Group engaged the enemy. The Japanese force consisted of two battleships, one light cruiser, and nine destroyers.
Because of bad weather and confused communications, the battle occurred in near pitch darkness and at almost point-blank range as the ships of the two sides became intermingled. During the melee, Juneau was struck on the port side by a torpedo causing a severe list, and necessitating withdrawal. Before noon on 13 November, Juneau, along with two other cruisers damaged in the battle — Helena and San Francisco — headed toward Espiritu Santo for repairs. Juneau was steaming on one screw, keeping station 800 yd (730 m) off the starboard quarter of the likewise severely damaged San Francisco. She was down 12 ft (4 m) by the bow, but able to maintain 13 kn (15 mph, 24 km/h). A few minutes after 1100, two torpedoes were launched from I-26. These were intended for San Francisco, but both passed ahead of her. One struck Juneau in the same place that had been hit during the battle. There was a great explosion; Juneau broke in two and disappeared in just 20 seconds. Fearing more attacks from I-26, and wrongly assuming from the massive explosion that there were no survivors, Helena and San Francisco departed without attempting to rescue any survivors. In fact, more than 100 sailors had survived the sinking of Juneau. They were left to fend for themselves in the open ocean for eight days before rescue aircraft belatedly arrived. While awaiting rescue, all but 10 died from the elements and shark attacks, including the five Sullivan brothers. Two of the brothers apparently survived the sinking, only to die in the water; two presumably went down with the ship. Some reports indicate the fifth brother also survived the sinking, but disappeared during the first day in the water.