From U.S. Navy

Jap sub sunk in Tokyo Bay by USS Sea Devil

The enemy submarine, I-374, sailed out of Tokyo Bay into the open Pacific shortly before sunrise on Sept. 22, 1944. Capt. Ralph Styles, skipper of the sub USS Sea Devil, was laying in wait submerged near the harbor’s entrance.

Port Charlotte man survived WWII torpedo attack

Nine German torpedo boats attacked eight American transport ships in Lyme Bay off the southern coast of England near the village of Slapton Sands in South Devon, during the wee hours of April 28, 1944. By dawn, 749 Americans died and 1000 more were casualties of war.

Two sailors meet 40 years after Vietnam War

Forty years after rockets rained down on their Tango Boat operating in South Vietnam’s Cau Lon River delta country, killing or wounding all seven crew members, Soan Ngo, skipper of the beleaguered boat, and Jim Milstead, his American advisor, were recently reunited in Venice, Fla. thanks to the efforts of a friend and the internet.

Typhoon was worst day of World War II for John Wisse

It wasn’t the bombing of the carrier USS Franklin off the coast of Japan on March 19, 1945, or the attack by 31 Kamikazes on the four destroyers leading the Franklin’s task force off Okinawa on April 14, 1945, that John Wisse of Rotonda, Fla. considers his worst day in World War II.

Jefferson Askew made 38 Atlantic convoy trips during WWII

Jefferson Askew joined the Navy at age 23 in 1940, almost a year before the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor. By war’s end, he had made 38 trips across the Atlantic in a minuscule destroyer escort, the USS Amick, helping to protect 150-ship convoys making the hazardous voyage to Europe during World War II.

Julius Gervan was engine-room chief aboard destroyer Thatcher in WW II

Chief Julius Gervan of Burnt Store Isles subdivision south of Punta Gorda, Fla. was in charge of the forward engine-room aboard the destroyer USS Thatcher II (DD-514) when a kamikaze pilot crashed his plane into the the ship’s super structure and burst into flames killing 14 sailors and wounding 56 more during the Battle for…

Abe Wolson recalls one mission worth 20 years of service

Former Lt. Col. Abe Wolson of Port Charlotte, Fla. served 20 years in the U.S. Marine Corps. He piloted Marine Corps 1, the presidential helicopter, during the administrations of Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon. He served three tours in Vietnam in 1961, ’67 and ’72, flying helicopters in combat for Special Operations missions, among other…

USS Arizona survivor Vernon Olsen remembered

Vernon Olsen, 91 — who survived the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor aboard the battleship USS Arizona, swam away from the carrier USS Lexington as it was sinking during the Battle of the Coral Sea months later, and took part in the Bikini Atoll atomic bomb tests after the war — died Friday, April 22,…

He fought at Okinawa the last big battle in the Pacific

Right out of high school Clyde Leininger, who lives in Alligator Mobile Home Park south of Punta Gorda, Fla. joined the Naval Aviation Cadet Program to become a pilot. Before he got his wings the program was canceled in October 1944 because the Navy had too many pilots.

He took President Roosevelt to Malta to Attend the Conference at Yalta

Angelo Marinelli is the swabbie in the center.  He and his buddies had just dropped FDR off at Malta and were touring the island on a sunny Sunday. President Roosevelt met with Egyptian King Farouk  aboard the USS Quincy in July 1944. Photo provided Boatswain’s mate Angelo Marinelli knew something big was up when a bathtub was brought aboard his ship, the heavy cruiser USS Quincy, in December 1944 while it was moored at the Boston Navy  Yard.

Ensign Jim McKinney forced Soviet sub to surface with water hose in Sea of Japan

Jim McKinney is a Navy man. So was his father and so is his son. Jim was a career naval officer who served during the Cold War as a commodore of a squadron of hydrofoil boats in Key West equipped with Harpoon, ship-to-ship guided missiles. His father, Adm. Eugene McKinney, was skipper of two World War II submarines: the USS Salmon and the USS Skate. He received three Navy Crosses and a Silver Star for Valor for the combat missions he made. Brad, Jim’s oldest son, is the commander of the Explosive Ordinance Department at the Navy’s facility at Panama Beach.

He served aboard USS Harding at Normandy and Okinawa in WW II

Mike Stata was a “hot shell man” on a 5-inch gun aboard the destroyer USS Harding 1500 yards off Omaha Beach on June 6, 1944 during the Normandy Invasion. He also served aboard the Harding off Okinawa on April 16, 1945 when his ship was hit by a kamikaze and 22 sailors aboard the destroyer were killed.

John Arens served in the Merchant Marines, Rangers and Navy

John Arens served as a teenage Merchant Mariner in World War II, become an Airborne Ranger in the Korean War, graduated from diving school in the 1960s, spent 11 years as a Navy SCUBA diver in the Arctic before skippering a Navy spy ship during the Cold War and completed his 40-year military career as the captain of a fast transport ship during “Operation Desert Storm” in 1991.

He photographed sinking of carrier Yorktown

Bill Roy was a 21-year-old photographer’s mate aboard the aircraft carrier USS Yorktown when she was sunk by an enemy submarine at the Battle of Midway June 7, 1942.Midway was the defining battle in the Pacific Theater during the first six months of World War II. The United States went to war after its Pacific…

He attacked the Yamato, world’s biggest battleship

It was Ensign Woody Lindskog’s lucky day. The Navy pilot was plucked from Wasile Bay off Halmahera Island in the South Pacific by an Army Air Corps Catalina flying boat, right under the nose of a Japanese gun emplacement and thousands of enemy troops after his Hellcat fighter was hit by an antiaircraft flak and…

He sunk biggest battleship of all

The Yamato was the largest battleship ever built. She had bigger guns and heavier armament than any ship afloat. Despite her size and fire power, the mightily leviathan’s hours were numbered as she and her small battle group steamed toward Okinawa on April 7, 1945.

Last of the 7 Bailey Brothers was Tuskegee Airman

Lt. Charles Bailey, Sr. was the last of the line. He was the last of Punta Gorda, Fla.’s “Fighting Bailey Brothers.” The last of a family of seven sons and two daughters who distinguished themselves in war and in life during World War II, Korea and much of the 20th Century.