Leland Dale Radeleff served honorably in the WWII Navy Armed Guard Service. He served on the SS Mauna Willi from May 1943 to February 1944, the SS John Muir from March 1944 to October 1944, and on the USAT Yarmouth from November 1944 to October 1944. Leland died 27 December 1980 but his son, Dale Radeleff, may be contacted at DALE_RADELEFF@YAHOO.COM.
The Life Line Written by an Armed Guard. Copy given to Leland Dale Radeleff The Armed Guard on Merchant Ships, Are the bravest men we've ever met. In convoy packs that move like snails Over strange and hazardous ocean trails Where the dread U-Boats wait in the dark For a chance to fire and break them apart. On the Murmansk run, with its ice cold, The U-Boats lurk for these sailors bold. Scanning the sea for a sight of the foe, Day after day, they onward go. A long and dangerous journey done, When the land appears in the morning sun. Then their glances turn into the skies, For the enemy planes that might arise. For they're never safe, even close to land, New dangers lurk on every hand. It may be an enemy mine they fear. Or a Jap bomber hiding near. But waiting for them are fighting men, Happy to see the supplies come in. There's food and clothing, guns and tanks, Letters from home for which he thanks. Cigarettes, candy and chewing gum, Cookies from friends and games for fun. When the ship is empty they leave again Maybe with wounded fighting men. And the fun they get is nothing more Than an hours leave on a lonesome shore. And then there are some from sunken ships Lost to them on other trips - With just the clothes they're standing in, But glad to be safe on deck again. They're even proud of an old life raft That kept them safe and they even laugh At the funny things they've said and done. While waiting at sea for some help to come. They're ready to go to sea again. To help get food to our fighting men. So, remember the boys, who man the guns On the ship that takes food To your brothers and sons. They may even guard that letter from you And give their life to get it through.
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