. . During WW II, Joe Zablotny sailed on the destroyer, USS Newcomb (DD-586)–said to be the most attacked ship in the Pacific. Once they were hit by five Kamikaze planes–four striking the 376 foot destroyer at the same time. “We took one hell of a beating,” Joe says of the
. . Angelo Vento entered the US Navy on March 1943. He was a motor machinist mate aboard LCT 956 which took part in five different landings and the occupation of Japan. After spending over 22 months overseas, he left the Navy in 1946.
. . Long before the elite Navy SEALs (which stands for Sea, Land, and Air) came into being in 1962, amphibious special operations were conducted by a small, ad hoc group of warriors. During WW II, Guy D. Tressler of Connellsville, PA served as one of them. At 91, he still
. . Eugene Torisky of Stow, Ohio served in the navy as a radioman during the 1950s, sailing on two different destroyers, the USS Turner (DDR-834) and the USS Fessenden (DER-142). Gene grew up in Pittsburgh, attended Catholic seminary school, but then decided against a life in service to the church.
. . Nick Steri entered the US Navy in February 1944 as a yeoman aboard LSM 32 and was a gunner on a 20mm cannon on the starboard side of the ship. On Sunday, April 1, 1945, he was behind his gun during the invasion of Okinawa where he engaged and
. . Adam Shumovich of Pittsburgh, PA was drafted into the US Navy during WW II and sailed aboard the submarine tender, USS Sperry (As-12). A submarine rigging accident and a bout with a rare form of malaria eventually sent him to Pearl Harbor and then home before the war ended.
. . John Rapp of Coraopolis, Pennsylvania loved the navy. He enlisted during WWII, serving aboard landing craft in the Pacific. After more than thirty years, John retired from the navy as a chief boatswain’s mate. “It was my job to keep the ship clean and orderly,” he says. “I showed the
. . Bernie Queneau was born in 1912; his earliest memories include the bombing of London during the infamous Zepplin Raids. As a boy, he learned several languages and lived through Europe until moving to the US in his teens. Prior to entering Columbia College, Bernie became an Eagle Scout; he
. . Ralph Pennetti entered the US Navy in November 1944 and serced as a member of the seabees in the Pacific. He maintained sea planes stationed in Okinawa and was assigned to the invasion force meant for Japan. While walking with a friend across an airbase in the Pacific, Ralph,
. . When would-be aviator Mort Parker went off to join the Army Air Corps in 1940, he was so excited to have passed the vision test that his blood pressure surged, and he failed his physical. Months later, he squeaked into the Navy Air Corps with nifty paperwork that showed
. . Bob Moore always had a lot to say about the war. “The country lost money on me,” says Bob, who trained endlessly as part of the navy’s amphibious fleet for the invasion of Japan that never happened. He practiced beach assaults as a crew member on small, specialized landing
. . During the Cold War, Joe Michaels served as Navy yeoman. Because of his special ability to write in shorthand, he was often assigned to work with high ranking officers. He joined the Navy at 17 and became known as a “kiddie cruiser”–a special class of young recruit guaranteed
. . During WWII, George Jock and Robert McKnight of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania served aboard the Baltimore-class heavy cruiser, USS Pittsburgh (CA-72). The ship saw intense action in the South Pacific and participated in the invasions of Iwo Jima and Okinawa. The Pittsburgh is most known for towing the USS Franklin (CV-13)
. . Peter entered the US Navy on June 30, 1942. He was aboard an LST 313 that was sunk during the invasion of Sicily. After returning to the United States, he redeployed to Europe and participated in the invasion of Normandy aboard a hospital ship. We thank you for sharing
. . Gus Mathews enlisted in the US Navy on November 16, 1942. He was an electrician aboard the heavy cruiser USS Boston (CA-69), sailing over 150,000 miles, spending 3 Christmas’, and earning 10 battle stars while aboard the ship. Gus didn’t set foot on land for over 17 months and