Joseph A. Babin was born 7 July 1914 and served in the Merchant Marine
during World War II. He presently lives in Apple Valley, California
and can be contacted by email at MARCHAR@GTE.NET. Joe served on six
ships, the SS Flowmar, SS Robert E Perry, SS Egbert Benson,
SS Albert S Burleson, SS Joseph N Dimand and SS Galen L Stone.


    John William "Bill" Bacus was born to William and
Clara Bacus February 20, 1925, in Ratcliff, Ohio.

He entered the U.S. Navy in April 1943 and trained at
Great Lakes, Illinois. From Great Lakes, he was sent to
Gulfport, Mississippi, for one month of gunnery school,
then to the Armed Guard Center in Brooklyn, New York.
He was assigned to the gun crew of the SS PAUL-
BORO, a tanker, and made two trips to South Americaś
On his third trip, the forward hole of the ship blew up off
the coast of the Carolinas. The crippled ship then went to
Baltimore, Maryland. The crew was sent to Brooklyn, New
York, by train for reassignment.

    Bill made four more trips across the Atlantic, including
tours on the SS PAN DELAWARE, a tanker; the SS
GATEWAY CITY, a Hog Islander; and the SS WIL-
LIAM A. GRAHAM, a Liberty Ship. He was discharged
from the Navy February 11, 1946.

    He married Dona L. Murphy November 3, 1949. They
have one child, Julie.

    Bill was a member of the Marine Corps from 1949 to
1952 during the Korean conflict. He was employed with
the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway Company until his
retirement January 30, 1985.

    Bill and Dona now live at 2935 Arrowhead Court,
Columbus, Ohio 43232.


    George L. Barber, RM 2/C, was born November 12,
1922, in Sylvester, Texas. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy
August 13, 1942, at Sandpoint, Idaho, and was dis-
charged October 21, 1944, medical discharge due to inju-
ries received, in the service.

    Upon enlistment, George went through boot camp in
San Diego, California, and radio school at Texas A&M at
College Station, Texas, from September 1942 to January
1943. After advanced communication school at the Naval
and Marine Corps Armory in Los Angeles, he was trans-
ferred to the Brooklyn Armed Guard Center at Bush Ter-

    In April 1943, he was assigned to the SS EZRA COR-
NELL as radio operator and made trips to Oran, Casablan-
ca and Bizerte.

    He was detached from the CORNELL in November
1943, and after home leave was attached to the SS
EDMUND B. ALEXANDER in December 1943, serving
on this ship until May 1944, during which time he made
three trips to Liverpool, England and Glasgow, Scotland.

    Upon detachment from the SS EDMUND B. ALEX-
ANDER, he was assigned to duty as a radio operator at
Camp Allen, Virginia, until admitted to the naval hospi-
tal. After discharge from the hospital in August 1944, he
was sent to limited-service duty at NAS, Pasco, Washing-
ton, until being medically discharged in October 1944.

    After discharge, George was a truck driver until early in
1947, at which time he was employed by the Veterans
Administration and by the State of Idaho as a Claims
Investigator. In May 1952, he went to Fairbanks, Alaska,
and was in the trucking business until October 1960,
when he went to work for the Internal Revenue Service as
a revenue officer, serving in Fairbanks and in Lewiston,
Idaho. He transferred to the Small Business Administra-
tion in 1965 and was employed by that agency until he
retired in 1982. He was employed in Boise, Idaho, San
Francisco, Anchorage and finally in San Diego for 13 years
by the Small Business Administration.

    George has lived in Clarkston, Washington, since his

    He was married to De'Arley Montague in 1942, and
has three surviving children: Deidre and Aleica, now in
San Diego; and Jim, now living in Overland Park, Kansas.

    His address is 1344 Highland, Clarkston, Washington


Moses Barker took a rare day off from his Seminary Drive Dairy Queen Restaurant on Sept. 27 to visit with buddies at the S.S. Stephen Hopkins Chapter of the American Merchant Marine Veterans in Bedford. It was a special meeting, marking the 55th year since the chapter's namesake won one of only nine "Gallant Ship" designations given out in World War II by the U.S. Maritime Administration after a desperate battle with two German commerce raiders. Barker, a Fort Worth native, was a 17-year-old Navy gunner aboard the Hopkins when that battle was fought. The Hopkins was 1,000 miles off the coast of South America when it met the 4,700-ton Stier, which had six powerful 5.9-inch guns, and the 7,000 ton Tannenfels, armed with 20-mm anti-aircraft guns. Fake superstructures hid the guns and the Germans posed as tramp steamers, but the Germans quickly showed their teeth and took the Hopkins under intense, accurate fire. "When we got to the 4-inch gun on the ship's stern, we just did whatever jobs had to be done," the Fort Worth native said. "We were about half a mile from the Germans by then. I concentrated on getting shells into the gun's breech. I didn't look much at the German ships because every time I did, it looked like they were firing right at me. " The Stier had already sunk 50,000 tons of Allied shipping, and its shells smothered the Hopkins, killing and wounding the crew and slowing it to one or two knots, according to official reports at the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, N.Y. One German bullet grazed Barker's groin, and he took a shell fragment in his leg as the 29-minute battle stretched on. Barker remembered shells were hitting around the gun several times a second, filling the air with constant explosions and clanging, whizzing shrapnel. "I kept yelling, `Fire!, fire! ' after I had loaded one shell, and then I looked up and saw that everybody around me and the gun was dead or unconscious, so I tripped the trigger," Barker said. "There were only five shells left at the gun, but they had rusted in their containers and I couldn't pull them loose. I left the gun and went forward and was ordered onto a lifeboat," he said. Barker later received a commendation from the Secretary of the Navy for his valor at the gun. STANLEY E. BARNEY

    Stanley E. "Start" Barney was born in Eugene, Oregon,
May 30, 1925. He attended grade school and junior high
school in Eugene, then moved to Portland, Oregon, where
he attended Grant High School.

    After war was declared, he worked at Willamette Iron
and Steel Shipyard. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy in June

    After boot camp in San Diego, California, he was sent
to Class A Gunnery School at Great Lakes Naval Training
Center in Chicago. Upon graduation, he was transferred to
the Armed Guard Center at Treasure Island, San Francis-
co, California. In 1943, he trained briefly at the Treasure
Island Gunshed and took firing practice at Pt. Montara.

    His first ship was a Liberty, the SS BENJAMIN BON-
NEVILLE, out of Todd Shipyard, San Francisco, for a
short trip to the Fiji Islands carrying war supplies and
returning with raw sugar to San Francisco.

    After two weeks leave, he signed on another Liberty, SS
THOMAS HENDRICKS, out of Oregon Shipyard-
Portland, Oregon. The HENDRICKS sailed around the
world, making port at Hobart, Tasmania-Aden, Arabia-
Suez, Alexandria, Port Said, Egypt and Gibraltar and then
home to Armed Guard Center, Brooklyn, New York.

    Stan's next ship was the Liberty SS BEN L. LINDSAY,
out of Todd Shipyard, San Francisco, fr his second around
the world trip, making ports of Fremantle, Australia-
Columbo, Ceylon-Calcutta, India-Durban, S. Africa-Rio
de Janeiro, Brazil-Guatanamo Bay, Cuba-Todd Shipyard
at Hoboken, New Jersey, then jome to Portland, Oregon,
for two weeks leave, then back to Treasure Island.

    His last sea duty was aboard the SS UMATILLA, a
Swan Island tanker out of Portland for a trip to Pearl Har-
bor, Hawaii. The cargo was aviation gasoline and P-51
Mustang fighter planes. Stan saw action in the Indian
Ocean when attacked by a Japanese "Q" boat.

    He returned vo Armed Guard Center Treasure Island
after over 50,000 miles at sea and requested shore duty and
cross-rated from Gunners Mate to Yeoman 2C. In 1945,
he was transferred to the Naval Amphibious Personnel
Center at San Bruno, California. He was serving there
when VE Day came. Naval personnel were being dis-
charged so his next station was at Personnel Separation
Center, Shoemaker, California.

    Stan was discharged in 1946 at the end of his enlistment
and returned to Portland where he applied for admission
to the University of Oregon. After graduation in 1950, he
went to work for a large construction company in Portland
and retired after 30 years as Secretary-Treasurer. He was
married and has three daughters.

    Stan also remained in the Naval Reserve for 20 years
and went to Naval Reserve retirement. He currently is
semi-retired and has a position as a Real Estate Agent for
a real estate company in Portland.

    He now lives at 6130 SW Miles Court, Portland, Ore-
gon 97219.


    Verne Winfred Barrett was born to Guy and Melita
Barrett November 22, 1919, in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

    After trying to get into the Coast Guard and being
turned down because of high blood pressure, he enlisted in
the U.S. Navy September 19, 1942.

    He trained at San Diego, California, and then was sent
to Armed Guard Destroyer Base at San Pedro, California.
He was assigned to a gun crew on the SS WILLIAM

    From San Francisco, he sailed to New Zealand, then
Sydney, Australia. The Battle of Coral Seas was being
fought north of the ship's location> They unloaded war-
time cargo in Australia and took on ore for ballast. The trip
lasted about 30 days without the crew seeing land or
another ship from Sydney, Australia, to the Panama Canal.

    From Panama, the EATON went to Guantanamo Bay,
Cuba, where it joined a large convoy to Baltimore, Mary-
land. There the ship was reloaded for a trip to Casablanca,
Morocco. They brought back 300 German prisoners to
Staten, Island, New York. The prisoners were more famil-
iar with New York City than any of the Armed Guard.

    Verne also served on the SS EWING YOUNG and the
MS MANOERAN, which stopped at many ports in the
South Pacific. His last ship was the SS JAMES H. KIN-
KAIDE, which was involved in the invasion of Saipan and

    After that much sea duty, he was sent to Port Chicago,
California, and there put into ship service.
    He was discharged October 25, 1945, at Minneapolis,
Minnesota, S l/C.

    Soon after discharge, he married Evelyn Lee in Glen-
dale, California. They moved back to Sioux Falls, South-
Dakota, where he worked for the Sioux Falls Water
Department for over 30 years until he retired. They have
two children, David, a city engineer in Fort Madison,
Iowa, and Anita, a teacher in the Rapid City, South Dako-
ta, schools.

    He and his wife now live at 208 E. Centennial Street,
Rapid City, South Dakota 57701.


    Carl S. Beaudry enlisted in the U.S. Navy October 8,
1942. After three weeks boot training at Newport, Rhode
Island, he was assigned to the Naval Air Station at Nor-
folk, Virginia. Two months later, he transferred to NOLA
Armed Guard Center. He went to Gulfport, Mississippi,
gunnery training and Mobile, Alabama, to duty aboard
the MAYARI, an eight-knot 7,000 ton United Fruit
banana boat to Recife, Brazil.

He returned in July to Brooklyn Armed Guard Center
was assigned to the SS ANDREW PICKENS. After
running back twice to New York because of shaft bearing
malfunctions, they finally arrived in Liverpool. He then
returned to New York, went home on leave and back to
Recife on the USAT COPIOPO, returning with German
Naal POWs.

Carl's next tour was to Murmansk on the SS JOSHUA
W. ALEXANDER. Returning in Convoy RA-64, the
ALEXANDER took a 45 degree roll during a gale. Carl
was on the bridge on watch and fell. He grabbed the first
thing he could, which was the 1st mate's leg. Back across
the deck they went again with the mate cussing him out.

He arrived back in New York safely, had 28 days leave and
then went to San Bruno, California. He next was off to
Buckner Bay, Okinawa, aboard the USS LA GRANGE
via Mog Mog, Ulithi Atoll, and Eniwetok. He survived the
big typhoon of 1945 by climbing into a 70 gallon steam
kettle, anchored into the cement foundation in a Quonset
hut galley.

The war ended and soon after he became a S/C 3/C. He
then went on board the USS TUTUILA at Tsingtao, Chi-
na and transferred to the USS ASHTABULA, which
could go 22 knots. After serving on 10-knot Liberties and
an 8-knot banana boat, Carl was impressed. They
anchored in Taku Bay refueling LSTs, then went to Singa-
pore, Arabia, Ceylon, Japan, Shanghi, Hong Kong, and
back to Shanghi. From there he went by troop ship to San
Francisco and was discharged July 19, 1946.

Carl and his wife, Edie, have been married for 41 years
and have four children and four grandchildren. He retired
from government civil service in 1988, and now enjoys
fishing and ham radio. He would like to hear from any of
his old shipmates. His mailing address is P.O. Box 741,
Sussex, New Jersey 07461.


Kenneth Roberts gedwell was born to Edith and Clay-
ton Bedwell September 26, 1921, in Smyrna, Delaware.

Kenneth enlisted in the U.S. Navy July 17, 1944, and
trained at Bainbridge, Maryland, for eight weeks. After
boot leave, he returned to Bainbridge and was immediate-
ly assigned to Camp Shelton, Virginia, for four weeks of
gunnery training. He was then shipped to the Armed
Guard Center Brooklyn, New York.

His first assignment was on the Liberty Ship SS MARY
A. LIVERMORE in Boston Harbor. He left there for
Quonset Point, Rhode Island, to pick up a load of cargo.
From there he headed for the Panama Canal and then on
to Pearl Harbor. After taking on supplies, food and water,
the ship headed in convoy west to Saipan to unload and
then returned to Pearl Harbor. The ship then headed for
San Pedro, California, and up the California Coast to Port
Heuneme to pick up cargo and then went west and joined
a convoy at Ulithi Island for Okinawa.

 Several days later on May 28, 1945, at 4 a.m. in Buck-
ner  Bay at Okinawa, the SS MARY A. LIVERMORE was
attacked by a kamikaze pilot while waiting to be unloaded.

The LIVERMORE lost four Navy personnel and several
merchant seamen. The ship then returned to Pearl Harbor
for minor repairs and then on to dry dock at Kaiser Ship-
yard in Richmond, California.

    Kenneth reported to Treasure Island and received orders
of 34 days leave and returned home. After leave, he report-
ed to Philadelphia Naval Base and returned to Treasure
Island. He then went to Shoemaker, California, then on to
Seattle, Washington, ending up in Adak, Alaska. He
stayed in Adak for five months. While in Adak, he drove
a butcher truck and was assigned to the USS PC 820 until
he finished his tour.

    He returned to Bainbridge, Maryland, for discharge.
Soon after discharge, Kenneth returned to Richmond,
California, to marry Fay McAllister. They returned to Del-
aware and he went to work for the Coca Cola Company.
Kenneth and Fay have two daughters, two granddaughters
and a great grandson.

    Kenneth retired from the Coca Cola Company in 1980
and now lives at 45 Upland Avenue, Dover, Delaware,
with his wife. They have been happily married for 43


    Originally from Elisnore, Missouri, Leslie Ray Bennett
grew up in the Detroit, Michigan, area. He enlisted in the
U.S. Navy in 1942, completing boot camp and signal
school at Great Lakes, Illinois, and convoy communica-
tions school at Noroton Heights, Connecticut. From the
Brooklyn Armed Guard Center, he was assigned as signal-
man on the Liberty Ship SS LINCOLN STEFFENS,
bound for North Africa.

    The first day in convoy, the ship next to the STEFFENS
was torpedoed, sinking so fast its crew was unable to lower
lifeboats. Other ships were also lost on that first convoy.

    On numerous shuttle runs in the Mediterranean, he
experienced both aircraft and submarine attacks on the
convoys: Some of the ships lost were carrying ammunition
and disappeared in huge fireballs. In one action off the
coast of Oran, Algeria, the STEFFENS' crew was credited
with downing two enemy planes. The STEFFENS' Gun-
nery Officer, Ensign John C. Landrigan of Cambridge,
Massachusetts, was awarded the Legion of Merit for this
action, which at that time was the second highest honor
given out of the Brooklyn Armed Guard Center.

    On one Atlantic convoy, Ray's ship carried the convoy
Commodore, a retired admiral from the British Royal
Navy. Ray worked with British Navy signalmen during
that crossing.

    He served on three Liberty Ships: the SS LINCOLN
WILLIAM R. LEWIS. Armed Guard Service took Ray to
both the North and South Atlantic, Mediterranean, Indian
Ocean, Persian Gulf, Caribbean and Pacific Oceans.

    After the war, Ray and his wife, Christine, were blessed
with three sons, Larry, Bill and Randy, and eight grand-
children. He retired from the Detroit Park Department as
a superintendent and now lives at 10362 McGregor,
Pinckney, Michigan 48169.


    Charles John Berg was born to Anthony and Helen Berg
February 10, 1926, in Rome, New York. He enlisted in
the U.S. Navy October 18, 1943, in Utica, New York.

    He was a Gunners Mate 3/C. He spent six weeks in
boot camp, then went by train to the Armed Guard Gun-
nery School in Norfolk, Virginia, for four weeks, after
which he was transferred to the Armed Guard Center in
Brooklyn, New York.

    His first ship assignment was the USS JOHN MCDO-
NOUGH, shipping out to Gourick, Scotland. From Scot-
land, he made the Murmansk Run, then came back to the
U.S. and landed in New York.

    He went on leave to Rome, New York, and when leave
was over, returned to the Armed Guard Center in Brook-
lyn, New York, where he was shipped out on the
ANDREW MOORE to Liverpool, England. From Liver-
pool, he went vo South End by the Sea, just outside Lon-
don. From there he went to Plymouth, England, then to
Omaha Beach to unload cargo, where the MOORE was
the supply ship for a while. From Omaha Beach, the
Moore sailed for Boston, Massachusetts, where Charles was
transferred to the SS VOLUNTEER and went to Casa-
blanca, then through the Mediterranean to Naples, Italy.
He then returned to the United States and landed in Balti-
more, Maryland, before sailing for Puerto Rico, and back
to New York.

    He was sent to Sampson, New York, because his rate
was frozen and was assigned to help discharge Naval per-
sonnel. After three months, Charles was honorably dis-
charged through the point system in Sampson, New York,
April 1, 1946. He received the Victory Medal, American
Campaign Medal and the European-African One Star.

    He married his third wife, Loretta Ann, November 30,
1968, in Seattle, Washington. They have a son, Tony
John, age 19. Loretta Ann had six children when they mar-
ried and Charles had four, with one child each deceased.
Charles and Loretta Ann together have nine living chil-
dren, 17 grandchildren and one great grandchild.

     Charles and Loretta Ann have lived in Seattle, Wash-
 ington, and Denver, Colorado, and for the past eight years
 have lived in Robbinsdale, Minnesta, a suburb of Minne-
 apolis. As of November 1989, they had been married 21

     Charles is semi-retired from the carpentry business and
 drives a school bus in the fall and winter.

     His current address is 3448 Grimes Avenue, Robbins-
 ville, Minnesota 55422.


    Sworn into the U.S. Navy at Salt Lake City, Utah,
Charles Rex Berry attended boot camp at Farragut, Idaho.
He then transferred to U.S. Destroyer Base, San Diego,
California, to attend gunnery school July 15, 1943. July
24, 1943, he reported aboard the SS JOHN ROSS, a Lib-
erty Ship, as pointer on the 3-inch 50-caliber stern gun.

    The JOHN ROSS was loaded with 500 and 1,000
pound bombs at the Benecia, California, Naval Ordinance
Station. Between decks was loaded with 500 tons of mus-
tard gas in bombs.

    Personnel aboard the ROSS aside from the Merchant
Marine Crew that ran the ship included 26 enlisted men of
the U.S. Navy, one gunnery officer, seven enlisted men of
the U.S. Army Chemical Warfare Group and one officer.

    The ROSS left San Francisco August 10, 1943, and
arrived in Townsville, Australia, September 8, where the
gas bombs were to be unloaded. But because the ship was
carrying a heavy deck load of vehicles including tanks des-
tined for New Guinea, it was decided to continue on to
Oro Bay, New Guinea.

    The ship arrived in Oro Bay October l, 1943, and
anchored in the bay to await unloading. Seven days later on
October 7, an air alert was sounded. Japanese bombers
came over and dropped bombs on the harbor and ships for
six nights in a row. No ships were hit, but the ROSS and
JOSEPH LANE, which were tied together, were straddled
by six bombs. One seaman was hit by bomb fragments.

    On October 15, 1943, at 8:20 a.m>, a flight of Zeros,
VALK 99 dive bombers attacked. P-38 fighters from
Dobadura Air Base intercepted and shot many of the Japa-
nese planes down. One VALK 99 made a direct attack on
the ROSS and LANE. All 20 mm guns fired at the
approaching dive bomber, which dropped its bombs but
overshot the ships. The smoking plane did not pull out of
its dive and crashed about 1,000 meters from the ROSS.

    During a red alert two days later, a B-25 made a direct
approach on the ROSS. It was mistaken for a Japanese Bet-
ty bomber and all the guns in the harbor opened up. The
disabled plane landed at Dobabura.

    The ROSS left Oro Bay October 21 for Townsville
where the mustard gas bombs were removed, then sailed
back to Oro Bay November 27.

    The ROSS traveled to Sydney, Brisbane, Townsville,
Cairns, Port Moresby, Lae, Milne Bay, Oro Bay, and
Finchhafen, Hollandia, carrying troops and war materials
from October l, 1943, to June 6, 1944.

    Charles served on four other merchant ships during the
war, then spent seven mnths on the light cruiser USS
PASADEBA CL 65 before discharge.

    He attended Brigham Young University from 1947-
1951, graduating with a BS degree in education. He was
All Conference in football and was drafted by the San Fran-
cisco 49ers as a defensive back in 1951. He played with the
49ers for six years and was their team captain before retir-
ing in 1957.

    After leaving football, he joined U.S. Steel as a salesman
in the chemical division. When he left in 1984, he held the
title of Western Regional Manager. He joined Coastal
Chemical Inc. as Vice President of Industrial Sales in 1984
and retired in 1988. He now lives in Provo, Utah, with his
wife, Helen. They have three children and 14 grandchil-

    His current address is 55 Marrcrest St., Provo, Utah

    Richard J. Best was born to Thomas and Ona Best May
30, 1925, in Akron, Ohio. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy
October 14, 1942, and trained at Great Lakes, Illinois.
From Great Lakes, he was sent to the Armed Guard Center
in Brooklyn, New York, November 27, 1942.

    Richard was assigned to a gun crew aboard the SS
WATERTOWN, a tanker, November 29, 1942, in Phil-
adelphia, Pennsylvania. On October 13, 1942, he was
assigned on board the tanker, the SS KENYON, and final-
ly, on February 15, 1945, Richard was assigned to the SS
HENRY WRIGHT HURLEY until June 1, 1946. He
was discharged June 15, 1946.

    On March 24, 1947, Richard enlisted in the Army Air
Force. While stationed in Panama, he was assigned to the
boat squadron and was stationed at Elgin Air Force Base,
Florida, Japan, Korea, and Shaw Air Force Base, South
Carolina. Richard was then assigned to recruiting in south-
eastern Kentucky for four and a half years. He then mar-
ried Mary Louise Smily March 17, 1956. They had one
son, Gregory J.

    After his recruiting assignment, Richard was stationed
at Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas, for Jet Aircraft School.
From there, he was stationed at Langley Air Force Base,
Virginia; Hill Air Force Base, Utah; then did a tour at
Alconbury, England, retiring with 20 years at Lockbourne
Air Force Base, Ohio, in July 1963.

    Prior to his retirement May 30, 1987, he was employed
by the Terex division of General Motors, Hudson, Ohio.

    He now lives at 645 Senn Drive, Tallmadge, Ohio


I joined the United States Navy on my 17th birthday, January 15, 1945 during World War II. That means I dropped out of high school so that I could serve in the Navy at the earliest opportunity. After completing my "boot camp" at Great Lakes, Illinois, I was sent to Radar School at Point Loma, California for training as a "Radarman". Since the war in Europe had ended with "V.E. Day", the expectation was that we all would be sent into the raging wars which were taking place in the Pacific Theatre War. Quite unexpectantly, I was sent to the East Coast and assigned to the "Armed Guard". Very few people these days will know what the Armed Guard stood for or what it did. In fact, the Armed Guard consisted of Navy Personnel assigned to merchant ships. Actually, they were U.S. Army ships. So, we would brag about the fact that we were assigned to Army ships run by merchant crews. The name Armed Guard came from the military mission that most personnel who were assigned to the merchant ships had; namely, operating the guns to ward off enemy submarines. Since radar was relatively new in those days and since the Armed Guard was the only established unit working on the merchant ships, it was only logical that I be assigned to the Armed Guard even though I had nothing to do with manning the guns. My job was to operate the radar which had been placed on troop transports. The expectation was that if and when the troop transports had to break convoy formation, that it would at least have it's own radar and it's own radarmen to conduct radar operations. After World War II ended, I was transferred to the Pacific destroyer fleet. I was assigned to one of the two last destroyers being built, the U.S.S. Lloyd Thomas. As such, I was one of the "plank owners", which means that I was one of the original crew and was part owner of the ship. After the ship was launched, it joined the aircraft carrier Valley Forge and toured the world with the carrier. Unfortunately, I was detached from the Lloyd Thomas and assigned to the destroyer picket ship, Newman K. Perry, U.S.S. 933. The Perry, along with other ships in the eight ships flotilla, sailed to China where we spent nine months sailing up and down the China coast while based in Tsintao, China. We sailed to China in September 1947 and returned to the United States in May 1948, one year before the Communist Chinese took over the mainland. Shortly after returning to the United States I was discharged from my first tour of duty at the age of 20 and 1/2 years and with the rank of 1st Class Petty Officer (Radarman). Korean Conflict In July of 1950 the North Koreans invaded South Korea and I was recalled to active duty at the age of 22. I was ordered to Great Lakes Naval Station and from there was flown by civilian transportation to California. From there I expected to be flown directly to Korea. But instead I was assigned to the Amphibious Forces and attached to an attack transport, the U.S.S. Montrose (APA 212). Unfortunately, the Montrose was in the "mothball" fleet and had to be resurrected. Activating the ship took several months and we were not ready to set sail until late December of 1950. The trip to Yokosuka, Japan took about 14 days with a stopover in Hawaii for a couple of days. Our first assignment was to take the ship to Pusan, Korea where we were to load troops and make a landing at Inchon, Korea. Unfortunately, there were no troops available. Instead, a convoy of eight attack transports like the Montrose, set sail for Inchon even though we had no troops with which to conduct an assault landing. The plan was for the ship's boats to be lowered with make-believe assault forces which actually consisted of the ship's crew. The crew was to disembark on one side of the ship and embark on the other side of the ship with the shore forces being lead to think that we had multiple troops to send ashore. Since duty aboard the Montrose seemed rather dull for a 1st Class Radarman, I requested and received assignment to the Navy's Command ship, the U.S.S. El Dorado (AGC 12) and became the senior radarman aboard that ship. The way I got to that ship is a story in itself. First, I was detached from the Montrose and given temporary housing on a Landing Ship Transport (LST) in Yokosuka Bay until such time as transportation could be arranged for me. All I can remember about that short stay of about a week was that I was never comfortably warm and never had anything to do. When my transportation was finally arranged I was driven to Tokyo with several days of packed lunches and given tickets for the renown Japanese trains. It took me about two days to travel from Tokyo to Sasebo, Japan where the U.S. Navy has another base. From there I was placed on a Japanese ship and sent to Pusan, Korea with another packed lunch. Since Pusan is only across the Yellow River from Sasebo, it was only an overnight ride to Pusan. Most of the personnel aboard that Japanese ship called the MARU were army. I believe I was the only Navy man aboard except for the Japanese crew. That trip introduced me to the Japanese toilet plumbing system and the sleeping arrangements which essentually was a coiled up mat which permitted you to sleep anywhere you wanted like on the open deck. By the time I finished my sandwhich and apples that the Navy had packed for me we were in Pusan. Again I had to wait for my ship, the U.S.S. El Dorado to arrive and so I was placed again on another LST, but one which was better maintained and a great deal more comfortable. In a week or so the El Dorado appeared and I was transferred to it to assume my new role as the leading radarman aboard that ship. While the ship was in port, we were asked if we wished to take positions on the front line against North Korea while the ground forces came aboard ship and experienced clean living and good food for a change. I volunteered and was given a carbine rifle, a field jacket and a helmet and assigned to a Puerto Rican regiment in the Army's Third Division. Not surprisingly, the troops in that regiment thought I could speak Spanish, which I could not. But since Italian is close to Spanish, I seemed to understand most of what was said. In addition, many of the troops thought I was in the Army even though I had a battleship gray helmet and my three stripes were inverted to reflect a First Class Petty Officer. But as we talked, things were clarified and better understood. We did not engage in any actual combat because when I reached this regiment, they were ordered to go to the rear and rest up while in reserve. So this entire experience, while interesting, was without much excitement.


    Born November 12, 1923, in Douds, Iowa, Dorsey C.
Bishop enlisted in the U.S. Naval Reserve July 13, 1942.
Following training at Great Lakes, Illinois, he attended
gunnery school in Chicago, Illinois, and was then posted to
the Armed Guard Center in Brooklyn, New York, until
1945 when he was sent to the Naval Training station at
Newport, Rhode Island.

    In September 1942, Dorsey was assigned to the SS
BERKSHIRE, a coal carrier, and from there was trans-
ferred in September 1943 to the SS JOHN S. COPLEY.

    While en route to Oran, Africa, from Gibraltar, the
JOHN S. COPLEY was torpedoed and stranded all night
until a tug pulled it into Glasgow, Scotland.

    In 1945, he served aboard the SS PIERRE SOULET,
and in January 1945, was transferred to the USS SAU-

    Dorsey was honored for his service with medals for the
American Theater, European Theater and Asiatic-Pacific
duty. He received the Good Conduct Medal and two stars

for the Philippine Liberation and China Sea, the V
Medal and two stars for participation in the Evacuat:

    He was discharged from the Navy in 1945 and be
a barber. He and his wife, Velma, live at 2121 E.
Street, Des Moines, Iowa 50317.


    Born August 1, 1911, in Portsmouth, Ohio, Leo C.
Blackburn received his naval commission in February
1943. He had been serving a second term in the Ohio
National Guard.

    After attending Naval Training schools at Dartmouth
College, Princeton University, Boston Armed Guard
Training Center and Gulfport Gunnery School, he was
assigned in September 1943 to the MV BLENHEIM in
Hoboken, New Jersey. The BLENHEIM was captured
from the Germans at the beginning of World War II.

    On the BLENHEIM, he made tours of duty to Antilla,
Cuba; Port Everglades, Florida; New York; Boston; Hali-
fax; Liverpool, London; and St. Johns, Newfoundland.
The ship put into St. Johns for repairs after an unusually
stormy crossing in January 1944.

    After leave in July 1944, he was assigned to the new
Liberty Ship SS VINCENT HARRINGTON in Balti-
more. The ship sailed for Newport News for a full load of
ammunition in late July 1944, then on to Cherbourg,
France, with a three-week layover in Oban, Scotland, while
waiting for Cherbourg harbor clearance. The HARRlNG-
TON then returned to Boston where it was loaded quickly
with army supplies and sailed for Cherbourg. The ship
made one trip to Boston, before heading for Antwerp, Bel-

    A few days out of New York, the war in Europe ended.
Leo was then sent to Separation Center School at Great
Lakes and assigned to the Officer Separation Center in
Washington, D.C., until June 1946 when he retired as a
Lieutenant Commander. He later served 10 years in the
Portsmouth Naval Reserve in which he was first com-
manding officer.

    Leo regards his service in the U.S. Navy to be one of his
proudest experiences. He says his service was especially
memorable and that he thinks most fondly of his gun
crews, some of whom he still is in contact with. He received
medals for participation in the American and European
theaters of war.

    Since his discharge in 1946, he has been a teacher, busi-
ness college owner and operator and served as an Ohio state
senator. He has been involved in many civic, humanitarian
and political activities. He also worked as Portsmouth
Postmaster for four years.

    He and his wife, Julia, have two sons, David and Sam,
and live at 2333 Micklethwaite Road, Portsmouth,
45662. Note: Leo recently passed away at age 90.


    Paul Bock sailed with the Merchant Marines for 18
years until 1953. He rose from a engine room wiper to
chief engineer during his duty.

Paul sailed on a couple of tankers under foreign flags
before Pearl Harbor including the MV BELGIAN GULF.
The ship never returned to Belgium during the German

At one time or another, Paul served on board all kinds
of vessels from tug boats to U.S. Liners. He sailed aboard
the SS AMERICA, at one time the largest U.S. passenger
liner. During World War II, the Navy took the ship and
renamed it the USS WESTPOINT. The Chief Engineer
Patrick Brennan remained on the ship prior to the war,
during Navy use and after the war.

While serving on the USAT EVANGELINE, Paul was
involved in the invasion of Gela, Sicily. In 1944 while serv-
ing as Chief Engineer of a tanker, his ship was sunk by the
enemy off the British Isles.

Paul received the Merchant Marine Combat, Mediter-
ranean Middle East War Zone and World War II Victory
Medal Awards.

In 1955, Paul worked for the City of New York as an
engineer with the department of hospital power plants. He
met a lovely nurse, Louise, at one of the hospitals and mar-
ried her. He retired in 1973 after a heart attack.

The couple has a new 40-foot 5th wheel travel trailer
pulled by a custom built trailer. The truck has a 12-volt
winch to raise and lower Paul's motorcycle where it's stored
behind the car. They "bum" around the country without
any special itinerary. They also have a two-family house on
Long Island, New York, which is their home base. Occa-
sionally they return to check on their 1956 and 1969 Lin-
colns stored in the garage.

At the 1989 Annual Reunion of the New York and
New Jersey Chapters of the U.S. Naval Armed Guard,
veteran Alex Lombardi and Paul were asked by Captain
Brian Herps of Project Liberty Ship to deliver eulogies dur-
ing prayer services. Paul was a representative of Merchant
Marine veterans and delivered the following eulogy.

"This morning we honor our brave departed shipmates.
Yes, brave, because following the ancient profession of
Merchant Marines, dealing with the sea which can be an
unforgetting adversary, is not easy work without the addi-
tion of World wide conflict. For many of our shipmates the
cycle of life ended far too early. Merchant Seamen sus-
tained the second highest casualty ratio after the U.S.

"It is a proud and momentous occasion to share this cer-
emony with some of the survivors of the U.S. Naval
Armed Guard. For the men of the Armed Guard, a lot of
them were only boys entering the Navy, but not for long,
we dedicate this ceremony, too. To fight in those open gun
tubs on slow moving ships took a special kind of man.
They have to be counted with some other very elite forces.
Let's hope the souls of our departed had fair winds and a
following sea."

Paul's current address is P.O. Box 1849, N. Massape-
qua, New York 11758-0915.


Born in Huntington Park, California, Don Bones
shipped out on the SS TYPHOON, a C2 troop cargo ship,
in 1944 after training at Armed Guard Center, San Diego,

    Aboard the TYPHOON was Lieutenant Commander
Toone, Senior Officer, three lieutenants including a doctor
and a corpsman, an ensign and storekeeper second class, a
chief cook and cooks, gunners mates, signalmen and about
40 seamen gunners. The vessel was equipped with four
3-inch 50 caliber guns, one 4-inch 50-caliber gun and
eight 20 mm guns.

    Don was at Okinawa on the TYPHOON on VJ Day
and during the invasion, after which the ship transported
about 1,000 Marines to Seattle for discharge. The
TYPHOON was possibly the first ship to arrive at the
Pacific Coast with discharges after the Japanese surrender.

    After a 30-day leave, Don went back to Treasure Island
and shipped out to China with stops in Shanghai, Tsing-
tao, Tientsin and boarded the LCFF 575, a LCI converted
to a landing craft flotilla flag. From Shanghai, he sailed on
the D.E. 385 USS RITCHIE to Terminal Island, San
Pedro, California, for discharge in 1946.

    Don now lives at 281 Duke of Wales Court, Henderson,
Nevada 89015.


Tom Bowerman was from Anniston, Alabama, and was
an Armed Guard in the U.S. Navy.

    He went through Boot Camp in San Diego, California,
attended Gunnery School at the San Diego destroyer base
and boarded his first ship, the SS CHARLES M. HALL,
after a brief stay at Treasure Island. After many months in
the South Pacific, the ship picked up a cargo of nitrate in
Chili and went through the Panama Canal and headed
North to Brooklyn.

    After a short stay in the Armed Guard Center, Tom was
assigned to the SS ESSO NASHVILLE, still designated as
an Apprentice Seaman. The NASHVILLE made a trip
from Brooklyn to Bay Town, Texas, and returned. Prob-
lems between the gun crew and the gunnery officer led to
half the crew, including Tom, being removed in Brooklyn
with possible charges of attempted murder and mutiny.
Charges were never processed and Tom was promoted
from Apprentice Seaman to Gunner's Mate 3rd Class
when long delayed paper work was finally processed.

    Tom was assigned to the SS ESSO PROVIDENCE with 
voyages primarily between various countries in South
America. Tom was later assigned to the SS LEWIS 
LUCKENBACH and the SS CHARLES SUMNER and made seven 
trips to various parts of Great Britain. He was 
promoted to Gunner's Mate 2nd Class while on the ESSO
PROVIDENCE. He declined a promotion to Gunner's Mate 
1st Class and declined an offer to attend the V12 
Officer's Training course.

    Final assignments for Tom were in New Orleans and
Galveston. He was assigned to removing Naval equipment
from merchant ships in Galveston and lived offbase.
He had a single room, an apartment shared with one co-
worker and a house shared with six co-workers and the
Navy did not know where any of them were located.

    Tom was discharged from the Navy at Memphis, Ten-
nessee, in 1945 and later joined the U.S. Army and finally
the U.S. Air Force. He was in the furniture upholstery
business while attending the University of Alabama. He
graduated with a BS in accounting and was an auditor for
a few years before being assigned as Director for Data Sys-
tems at Anniston Army Depot, a position he held for more
than 25 years. He obtained a masters degree from the Uni-
versity of Oklahoma.

    Tom had one son, Charles, by his first wife and three
sons, Thomas Jr., Terry and Barry by his second wife,
Frances Johnson Bowerman.

    Tom Bowerman died on December 16, 2007.


    Wilborn Davis Boyd was born January 1 l, 1922, in
Marion, Kentucky. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy Novem-
ber 14, 1942, at Indianapolis, Indiana. Wilborn took his
boot training at Great Lakes, Illinois. In February 1943, he
volunteered for Armed Guard Duty and was sent to Gulf-
port, Mississippi, for training and then transferred to the
Armed Guard Center, New Orleans, Louisiana.

    Wilborn served on five ships. His first assignment was
the SS WILLIAM HARPER, a Liberty Ship, from Febru-
ary 27, 1943, to September 12, 1943, sailing the Panama
Canal, around Cape Horn to the Suez Canal, and to Port
Said, Egypt.

    His second ship was the SS WILDWOOD, a Hog
Islander, from December 14, 1943, to July 1 l, 1944. The
WILDWOOD sailed to Brazil and Cuba, and then to
Manchester, England, in May 1944 with supplies for the
Normandy Invasion. After returning to New York for two
weeks rest at Rest Camp Deland, Florida, he was reas-
signed to the SS C. FRANCIS JENKINS, a Liberty Ship,
September 3, 1944, to April 26, 1945.

    The JENKINS sailed through the Panama Canal to
Hollandia, New Guinea, with 48,000 cases of beer for the
U.S. Army. The army supplied a second lieutenant as a
security officer. After unloading cargo, the ship sailed for
Lin-Gayen Gulf three days after D Day with 500 Army
troops and a MP Battalion> Japanese suicide planes were
plentiful; but the ship made it back to San Francisco,
where Wilborn went on leave before reporting to the
Armed Guard Center in New Orleans.

    In May 1945, Wilborn was assigned to the SS L1TTLE
BUTTE, a T2 tanker, from May 2 l, 1945, to September
7, 1945, sailing from the Panama Canal to the Pacific.
About two days out of Panama, the good news came that
the war had ended. On August 15, 1945, the ship's crew
was instructed to dump all ammunition over the side into
deep water. Everyone was happy to oblige and even the
Merchant crew helped out.

    Wilborn left the BUTTE in Panama and caught the SS
GREAT MEADOWS, a tanker, on which he sailed from
November 12, 1945, until February 23, 1946, as a care-
taker for the Armed Guard Equipment on board along
with Fred E. Mang SM3. Wilborn spent about three
months hauling fuel oil to England from Curacao and Aru-
ba, stopping in Mobile, Alabama. The GREAT MEAD-
OWS was tied up on the Mobile River with the alligators
and the other dead ships. The BUTTE was stripped of its
guns and Fred was discharged and went home vo Pueblo,

    Wilborn was regular Navy so he was given leave, then
assigned to the USS TARAWA. His Naval career includ-
ed duty on nine ships, duty at the Naval Ordnance Test
Station in China Lake, California, from 1950-1952 and
recruiting duty in Lynchburg, Virginia, from 1959-1962.
He retired from the U.S. Navy Oct. 1, 1972, as a Senior
Chief Gunner's Mate.

    In 1973, while employed with the Stanwick Corp.,
Wilborn spent a brief tour in Iran with a survey team as a
technical adviser to the Iranian Navy.

    He was then employed by the Virginia State Air Pollu-
tion Control Board until February 1, 1987, and retired as
a senior air quality control technician.

    Wilborn and his wife, Yvonne, have two sons, three
daughters and two grandchildren. They now live at 02934
E. Griffin View Drive, Lot 99, Lady Lake, Florida 32159.


Phil was born May 19,1926 in Clifton Forge, Virginia. His parents were Ethel Mae Worth Bradley and Felix Augustine Bradley, Sr. They moved to Clifton Forge in 1916. Phil enlisted in the Navy in May 1943, when he was 17 years old. He was sent to the Great Lakes Naval Training Station for his boot training. After that he was sent to Gulfport, Mississippi for additional gunnery training. He was assigned to the Navy Armed Guard Center in Algiers, Louisiana and they assigned him to a gun crew on the SS George E. Badger. He trained himself as a Signalman and became one. He was responsible for all signalman duties on the SS William Bevan and later transferred to the M/S Shooting Star. Phil made several trips to Murmansk, Russia and was also at Normandy. Phil was the sole survivor of a commercial airline crash, Piedmont Airlines Flight 349, which crashed into Bucks Elbow Mountain, just above Crozet, Virginia. It happened October 30, 1959. Phil has written a book about his life and the crash and it is available for $15.00 and 25% of the proceeds go to the Navy Armed Guard Association. JOSEPH B. BRAGIEL

    Joseph B. Bragiel was inducted October 6, 1943, by
Draft Board No. 2 in Whiting, Indiana. He was sent to
NRS in Indianapolis, Indiana, and from there he was sent
to Great Lakes, Illinois, for nine weeks of boot camp begin-
ning October 13, 1943.

    On December 22, 1943, he was sent to Armed Guard
School in Gulfport, Mississippi, and on January 20, 1944,
was transferred to Shell Beach, Louisiana, for gunnery
training on the 20 mm 50 caliber and the 3-inch 50 anti-
aircraft gun.

    Joseph was then transferred to the Armed Guard Center
at Treasure Island in San Francisco, California, January 20,
1944. On February 2, 1944, he was promoted from Sea-
man 2/C to Seaman 1/C. He then reported February 7,
1944, to the SS USAT VIRGINIAN.

    His first port of call was Pearl Harbor where he saw the
remains of the battleships that were sunk by the Japanese.
He recalls seeing the ARIZONA, the CALIFORNIA, and

    Bragiel remembers crossing the International Date Line
for the first time. U.S. Navy men that had never crossed
the line before were called pollywogs and had to go through
an initiation. After being initiated, the men joined the
ancient order of the deep and had a card signed by Nep-

    After several reassignments and a refresher course at an
Armed Guard Center, Joseph became part of the crew on
the VIRGINIAN that hauled 700 mules from Guadulca-
nal to Calcutta, India, for the Army to use in the mountains
for moving heavy equipment. Then the ship hauled 700
mules from Port Morrisby, New Guinea, to Calcutta. Next
the ship hauled 700 wild horses from Townsville, Austra-
lia, to Calcutta. Simultaneously, they were bringing sup-
plies to the Army at Guadulcanal, Palalu Island, Marshall
Island, Sydney, Melbourne and the Perta Submarine Base
in Australia. While transporting the livestock, the crew
included 90 Army mule skinners who took care of the
mules and horses on board. He also traveled to Anewitok
and Tasmania.

    Joseph received medals for the Asiatic-Pacific Cam-
paign, American Area Campaign and Okinawa-Juma.
The last ship he served on was the KYLE V. JOHNSON,
which docked in San Francisco. From there, the crew was
sent back to Great Lakes, Illinois, for disbandment. Joseph
was honorably discharged November 13, 1945.

    His current address is 151 142nd Street, Hammond,
Indiana 46327.


    Gerald D. Brien, Sfc E-7 retired, was born in Portland,
Maine, September 28, 1924, to HenryJ. and Margaret G.
Brien. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy March 22, 1943, and
served in the armed forces for the following 20 years.

    After boot camp, he was assigned to the Armed Guard.
He crossed the Atlantic many times during World War II
on ships transporting troops and supplies to the front.

    His ship assignments included the SS BETTY ZANE,

    One crossing included loading a contingent of the 3rd
Armored Tank Division at Oran, North Africa, and pro-
ceeding to Naples, Italy. An air raid was encountered the
first night out, but was survived and the ship reached
Naples safely. The ship then departed for Brendizi, Italy.
On approaching that destination, it was learned that
Brendizi was under air and E-boat attack and that about
half of the ships in the harbor had been lost. It was estimat-
ed that a 15 minute earlier arrival time would have put
Gerald's ship at great risk.

On one return trip, 1,000 German POWS were aboard.
During a Mediterranean tour with stops in the Suez
Canal, Iran and the Persian Gull Gerald's ship carried
supplies and two steam locomotives for the Russians.

    Gerald suffered an illness during this time, requiring a
three-week stay at an Army hospital in Marseilles, France.
When he recovered, he was sent to the Armed Guard pool
in Oran, North Africa. His next assignment was to serve
as CO of an Armed Guard Crew while en route from Oran
to New Orleans.

    The return route on one crossing was via Rio De Janeiro
and San Paulo, Brazil. In Brazil, his ship tied up in the
same harbor with German cruisers and destroyers since it
was a neutral location. Gerald's ship was loaded with cof-
fee, which was then taken to New Orleans, Louisiana.
While unloading the coffee and awaiting orders, VJ Day
was announced.

    Gerald was then routed to the Fargo Building in Boston
and subsequently discharged at the rank of BM 2/C.

    For the next 17 years, he served in the Army Air,Corps,
the U.S. Air Force and finally in the U.S. Army, with
assignments in Alaska, Okinawa, Korea and many state-
side locations. He retired from the service in 1964.

    Medals Gerald received during wartime service include
the European-African-Middle Eastern Area Medal with
battle star, American Area Campaign Medal, World War
II Victory Medal and Good Conduct Medal bronze clasp
w/4 lps.

    He and his wife, Charlotte, have one son, one daughter,
two stepsons, two stepdaughters and six grandchildren. He
retired in 1986 from his position as shore captain of the
Hugenot Yacht Club.

    He now lives at Box 1865, Depot Street, Harrison,
Maine 04040.


    Joseph Brien was born to Henry and Margaret Brien
February 4, 1927 in Portland, Maine. He enlisted in the
U.S. Navy in August 1943 and trained at Newport,
Rhode Island. He was sent to Damneck, Virginia, for gun-
nery training, then to the Armed Guard Center in Brook-
lyn, New York.

    His first assignment was to a gun crew aboard the SS
BERT HART in convoy from New York to Naples, Italy.
After offloading, the ship was reloaded with ammunition,
fuel, food and British and American troops, and on Janu-
ary 21, 1944, they sailed in convoy for Anzio. For nine
days, the convoy of four Liberty Ships, several cruisers,
destroyers and landing ships endured numerous air raids
and artillery shellings. A total of 46 ships were sunk. The
BRET HART was the only Liberty Ship to leave Anzio.

    Joseph next served on the JAMES M. GILLIS, and in
April 1944 sailed to Khorramsha, Iran. Returning to the
States, he was again assigned to the JAMES M. GILLIS,
leaving New Jersey in October 1944 for Murmansk, Rus-

    After returning to the States in March 1945, he was sent
to Treasure Island Armed Guard Center, California. He
was reassigned in May 1945 to the JOHN A. RAWLINS,
which arrived at Okinawa a few weeks after the invasion.
A few nights later during an air raid, the RAWLINS was
torpedoed. Fires were extinguished and cargo offioaded so
temporary repairs could be made. The ship was then sent
to Butmer Bay for safety from an approaching typhoon. At
war's end, the RAWLINS was being readied for the inva-
sion of Japan. But in September 1945, another typhoon
hit the island, and the RAWLINS, unable to get under-
way, was washed onto the beach.

    Joseph was assigned to the fleet in December 1945. He
left the Navy in June 1957 as a GM 1/C. He enlisted in
the Air Force in August 1957 and served in France, Ger-
many, Italy and Thailand, retiring from service in Decem-
ber 1973.

    He was married to Robbie L. Scott in February 1960 in
Denver, Colorado. They now live at 2510 Pine Street,
Granite City, Illinois 62040.


    David Brown enlisted in the U.S. Navy in June 1942.
He took boot training in Faragett, Idaho, and from there
went to Treasure Island, California, for gunnery training
for 20 mm and 5-inch guns.

 Thirty days later, he was assigned to the SS RICHARD
MACZKOWSKI, a new Liberty Ship. The ship made two
trips to the Pacific Islands, then David was reassigned to
a U.S. Army transport Sea Cat, a troop and cargo ship. He
served on the Sea Cat until August 1945, when he was sent
to Treasure Island and then to Great Lakes, where he was
discharged November 19, 1945.

    After discharge, David worked construction for two
years, then joined his hometown police force. Four years
later in 1951, he joined the San Bernadino, California,,
police force. In 1965, he went to work in the medical field
as an executive housekeeper. He retired in 1980 and now
spends his spare time fishing.

    His current address is 1445 165th Street, Clemons,
Iowa 50051.


    Armed Guardsman Louis William Buescher and his
mates were commended by the Chief of Naval Personnel,
E.D. Flaherty, for their outstanding service aboard the SS
MATTHEW P. DEADY during action against enemy
Japanese aircraft offLeyte, Philippines, from November 3
to 12, 1944.

    The ship was repeatedly attacked by suicide bombers,
one of which struck the ship, setting fires and wounding a
number of the crew and passengers. Despite the furious
onslaughts, the crew fought back with determined aggres-
siveness. With expert marksmanship and cool courage,
they destroyed approximately 10 Japanese planes. Flaherty
stated "your unfailing devotion to duty in complete disre-
gard of your personal safety throughout these engagements
was in keeping with the best traditions of the United States
Naval Service."

    For his service aboard the DEADY and the capture and
occupation of the Southern Palau Islands, Louis received a
Bronze Star.


    Clayton John "Jack" Buholtz was born April 20, 1925
in Wyandotte, Michigan, and raised in Hastings, Michi-
gan. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy serving as Armed Guard
on Merchant ships. His tours took him to England, Scot-
land, South America, and Japan.

    After leaving the Navy, he returned to Hastings, where
he met and married Kathleen Ackerman, just recently dis-
charged from the U.S.M.C.W.R.

    Both Jack and Kathleen took flying lessons at Hastings
Airport. Neither were able to complete the licensing pro-
cess before winter set in and their first child was expected.

    There were three boys born to Jack and Kathleen, Tony,
William and Ben. The eldest, Tony Lee, was killed in Viet-
nam. He was a Cobra pilot, 1st Lt., and was posthumously
awarded the Silver Star.

    Jack also served in the Naval Reserves, weekends at
Gross Isle, Michigan. He was employed at Wyandotte
Chemical until he left to go to Miami, working for Eastern
Airlines. He eventually went with Thompson's and then
Air Treads serving as Quality Control for aircraft tires,
both commercial and military.

    Jack and Kathleen assumed the leadership of a Cadet
Squadron in Civil Air Patrol. This squadron was the No.
1 Cadet Squadron for five years with some 120 young men
taking many honors and sending delegates to Portugal,
England, Costa Rica, Chile, Peru, San Salvador, and Equa-

    Jack returned to Michigan in 1976; now in fleet truck
tires. It was back in Michigan that Jack was diagnosed
with lung cancer, eventually forcing his return to Florida.
He lived far beyond the doctor's expectations, long enough
to sell the house in Michigan and to settle in a very friendly
manufactured home community, Edgewater Landing.

    During the 1989 reunion in Seattle, one of Jack's ship-
mates, Kenneth Cauble, saw Jack's name and wrote, but
it was too late. Jack died September 14, 1989. After
Kathleen wrote Kenneth back, Kenneth took time to write
down excerpts from the diary that he had kept when he
was on board the RAYMOND CLAPPER with Jack.
Kenneth thought that Jack's boys would like to know
what their life on board ship was like.


    Harold G. Bullivant was born in Redwood City, Cali-
fornia, March 20, 1922. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy in
March 1942 and trained in San Diego, California. In July
1942, after three months of signal school, he was sent to
Noroton Heights, Connecticut, for a month of Mersig

    In August 1942, he was assigned to the SS MARGA-
RET LYKES, a 3,400-ton laker, and set sail September
1942 for Greenland.

    His second trip aboard the MARGARET LYKES, car-
tying wheat, was the ill-fated convoy that the Stilinovich
brothers were in. Being a second dass signalman, Harold
kept a daily log on the trip. The ship left New York for Liv-
erpool, England, March 8, 1943, with a convoy of 40
ships. The first eight days at sea were uneventful. But from
March 16 to 19, the ship came under attack by a Wolf
Pack of U-boats. At 2 a.m. March 17, the LYKES was the
last ship in the seventh column of four ships. Within 30
seconds, the three ships ahead, two tankers and a' Liberty
Ship, were torpedoed. Harold says he does not know how
the LYKES avoided being hit as the U-boats were right in
the middle of the convoy. He recalls that the burning ships
lit up the sky. The convoy was scattered and at least 12
ships were hit. Of 40 ships, 24 made it to England.

    In January and February 1944, Harold made the Mur-
mansk, Russia, run. He then went around the world on the
WILLIAM N. PENDLETON, a tanker, from June 1944
to June 1945.

    He also served on the SS WILLIAM E. WEBB and the
SS MARINE CARDINAL. He was discharged December
1945 and received two Bronze Stars for his service.

    Harold was recalled to the Navy in September 1948 and
served a year on board the hospital ship USS REPOSE
AH-16 in Tsingtao, North China. He was discharged in
April 1950.

    He married A. Lillian RasoJune 24, 1951. They raised
six children, Janice, Joyce, Steven, Judy, Tom, and Tim.
Harold was a general building contractor for 30 years and
retired to 955 Pacheco Court, El Dorado Hills, California
95630 in 1979.


    Kenneth Burhite, Jr. was born December 24, 1927,
Neena, Wisconsin. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy in Janu-
ary 1944 and attended boot camp in Farragut, Idaho.

    Kenneth served on three ships during the war: the
BRAZIL VICTORY, from May 1944 to December 1944,
the SS CHINA VICTORY, from January 1945 to April
1945; and the SS FRANCISCO VICTORY, from April
1945 to September 1945. While assigned to the CHINA
and FRANCISCO, he was injured.

    He was awarded the World War II Victory Medal,
Honorable Discharge Medal, the American Area Medal
and the Asiatic-Pacific FIC Campaign Medal.

    Kenneth was aboard the CHINA when the bomb was
dropped. He recalls that he was told that it was a test. He
was ordered to wear red-lensed glasses and not look at the
bomb blast.

    He was discharged April 15, 1947, and for a time
worked making overhead garage doors until he lost the use
of his leg and was confined to a wheelchair. He and his
wife, Carolyn L., have been married 30 years.

    Kenneth's address is 239 Nelson Road, Rochester,
Washington 98579.


    Daniel W. Byles was born June 14, 1923, in Danville,
Illinois. He lived in several states prior to graduating from
Battle Creek, Michigan, Central High School in June

    He enlisted in the regular Navy in September 1941 and
received boot training at Great Lakes and attended Group
2 school at San Diego, California. He was then assigned to
the Armed Guard as a signalman operating out of the
Armed Guard Center at Treasure Island, San Francisco,

    In over four years of sea duty on nine ships, he served
initially in the Pacific. In 1942, he picked up a newly built
Liberty Ship, the HARVEY W. SCOTT, in Portland,
Oregon. The SCOTT was sunk off South Africa while car-
rying war supplies to southern Russia via the Persian Gulf.
By life boat, he landed in South Africa between Port Eliza-
beth and Durban, was issued a South African Army uni-
form and served on two ships before returning to Califor-
nia. He then served on three ships in the Pacific, ending his
sea duty on a tanker operating out of the Persian Gulf and
Far East.

    Ships Daniel served on in addition to the SCOTT

    While assigned to de-commission school at the Armed
Guard Center in Brooklyn, New York, he married his
wife, Phyllis, and then attended St. Edward's University in
Austin, Texas, for his Ph.B. and Columbia University
School of Law in New York City. He then spent 35 years
as a corporate lawyer in the pharmaceutical industry, retir-
ing as corporate secretary and assistant general counsel of
Merck & Co., Inc. (the world's largest prescription phar-
maceutical company) in May 1989.

    He has held numerous civic and professional positions
including president of the Board of Managers of the New
Jersey State Prison System, vice chairman of the Narcotic
Drug Study Commission of the New Jersey Legislature,
chairman of the New Jersey State Employees Legislative
Committee and scout master (as an Eagle Scout) of a Boy
Scout troop in New York City. He also has served on sever-
al boards including the Board of Governors of the New
Jersey State Opera and the Board of Directors of the Cor-
porate and Business Law Section of the New Jersey State
Bar Association.

    He currently is listed in "Who's Who in America" 45th
edition for 1988-1989.

    Daniel's mailing address is 34 Carrie Court, Nutley,
New Jersey 07110.


    Robert Byre was born January 18, 1925, and is original-
ly from Media, Pennsylvania. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy
in September 1942 and attended boot camp and gunners
mates school at Samson Naval Base, Little Creek, Virginia.
He was trained on the 5-inch 38 caliber gun.

    He made two trips on the SS EDWARD L. GRANT to
Murmansk, Russia, and also sailed on the SS NELSON
W. ALDRICH to Archangel, Russia, and the SS DAVID
L. YULEE to Italy and France. His most memorable expe-
rience was the trip to Archangel in the White Sea aboard
the NELSON. The convoy had two ice breakers with it the
whole journey.

    Byre received the Victory Medal, Good Conduct Medal,
and the European Campaign Medal. He was discharged
from the Navy January 26, 1946.

    He spent 27 years rebuilding machine tools for resale for
the Joyce Equipment Company in Chester, Pennsylvania.
Currently, he is active with charter fishing and diving
boats. He lives with his wife, Verna M. Byre, and has two
stepchildren, Sandra Brennan and William Tyndall, and
four grandchildren. His current address is 1603 Cedar
Street, Lewes, Delaware 19958.

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