The Diary of Cecil
USS Murray DD 576
Nov. 24- Arrived at Mare Island,
Jan.5 – Underway at for ammunition depot. commenced loading ammunition, depth charges, and stores.
Jan.6 – At we got
underway for Hunters Points near
Jan. 7 – Underway at for
degaussing range. Arrived there and degaussed ship. Dropped anchor near
Jan. 8 – Underway for speed run – made 39.5 knots and went back to
Jan. 9 – Underway for Radar Tracking – Tracked all day and
Jan. 10- Tied-up at Pier 16 at
Jan. 11- Underway for Hunter’s Point- Arrived there and tested
radios until . Went under
Jan. 20- Captain’s Inspection- At got underway for
Jan. 21-25- At sea- rough sea & nothing happening-
Jan. 26- At - arrived
Jan. 27- Refueled ship and took on more ammunition & stores-
Jan. 28- Tied-up in
Jan. 29- Underway at 06:44 with 5
carriers, 1 heavy battle cruiser, and 7 destroyers. Our destination is on an island named Ulithi which is one hundred miles Northwest of
Jan. 30- At sea-
Jan. 31- At sea which is damn rough- Two carrier planes crashed- no survivors.
Feb. 1- Sea is still rough but was able to hold pay-day. Refueled ship from carrier but fuel-line broke- rescued two men which fell off carrier. We also crossed the International date line and lost one day.
Feb. 3- Attempted to refuel ship again but broke our fuel line- We
are now north of the
Feb. 4-6- at sea – nothing happening
Feb. 7 – Entered Ulithi atoll at 1300. Refueled ship & took aboard more ammunition – anchored at berth 134 –
Feb. 8 – anchored as before –
Feb. 9 – today, we striped ship for action and moved to a north anchorage. Expect to get underway tomorrow.
Feb. 10 – Underway at 930 with 5
carriers, 4 cruisers, 2 battlewagons, and 16 destroyers. We intend to strike
Feb. 11 – holding battle drills. Transferred pilot & gunner to a battlewagon. A plane crashed at 1830. Met another force which we joined.
Feb. 12 – Refueled ship from a battlewagon. We are now proceeding north – D – day is 16th.
Feb. 13 – Steaming north – expect an
attack from the air any time – No contact with the enemy so far – we are about
three hundred miles from
Feb. 14 – proceeding northward at 18 knots Gyro off 005°. Nothing happening as yet. Received foil-weather happening as today. It is getting colder and the sea is very rough. Anything may happen now!
Feb 15- Refueled ship at - All hands were cautioned to keep eyes and ears opened.
Feb 16- Went to General Quarters at - First flight took off. Here is where
and when I wished I were home. We are now 80 miles from
Feb 17- Still a float and still in doubt how long our luck will hold out. Sent five waves of planes. Sea is rough and ceiling very low. Our first wave was almost wiped-out by heavy storm. Several of our planes returned, but had to land in sea as they were shot-up pretty bad! Our losses today were heavy but the Japs took a worse beating - We will refuel ship in the morning- “Where do we go from here boys - Where do we go from here?”
Feb 18- Morning G.Q.- Our planes and
ships sank three Jap patrol boats. One
of our ships was damaged. Refueled ship. Our
fighter plane shot down 2 enemy planes. We are just inside the
Feb. 19- Laying off ninety five miles
Feb. 20 - Steaming just northwest of
Feb. 21- Laying off Iwo-Jima. Went to General Quarters about with several large groups of boogies on our scene. A consisting force over the horizon from us was attacked by Jap planes.
Feb. 22- Went to general Quarters around 09:30, a Jap-bomber attacked one of our ships.
Feb. 23- Fueled ship-Had guard-mail duty. One of our forces was
attacked and a destroyer was hit and damaged by suicide ‘crash-dive’ Jap plane.
At we are proceeding
Feb. 24- Fueled ship and are now twelve miles on left flank of formation by ourselves as picket patrol.
Feb. 25- Out alone still-14:00 went in search of one of our Pilots forced at sea. Search unsuccessful. At General Quarters sounded with Jap Jugger 1400 yard off our Port bow. It was also loaded with diesel oil which later proved to be a nice fire. ‘Hunting is improving’- Weather is very cold and water is damn rough.
Our ship has been damaged in several places. We were very near to
Feb. 26 – Hit
Feb. 27 – Met tankers and refueled and took aboard stores.
Feb. 28 – Refueled ship again and received mail from a
destroyer. We ate again. Picket ship way out ahead of our
formation. Believe to be heading for
March 1 – Fueled ship. Received war correspondent from one ship and
transferred him to another. Today we hit
Damage to the enemy: Sank two Jap destroyers and damaged 1, another damaged two 20,000 ton merchant ships. Destroyed a number of Jap aircraft and damaged air fields and also damaged Jap Naval Base. Will get more report tomorrow. Some ships were ordered to bombard tonight, so yet we don’t know which ones will have the job.
March 2-13- Entered Ulithi and went alongside a tender. We were attached by Jap Suicide planes which one crashed a carrier and another hit the beach. We went to general quarters several times. Left port at will meet main force tomorrow. Destination unknown.
March 14- Joining forces and are proceeding to the Northwest.
March 15- Joined task force 58, still proceeding to Northwest. Expect excitement on this trip.
March 16- Fueled ship- Our destination is- Kyushi
March 17- Fueled ship - At we left regular formation with two more destroyers. At found us in the left tank of scouting line which is 45 to 50 miles ahead of main force. There are eighteen destroyers running in trio’s at ten miles apart. It is and all is well, but don’t know how long this quietness will last. We will attack tomorrow at sunrise and we shall be about sixty miles off the Jap coast-
March 18- Went to General Quarters at by the light of Jap aircraft flares in a complete circle around us. Opened fire on Jap plane directly overhead but missed - Opened fire at another plane but missed again. Secured from G. Q. for breakfast. General Quarters sounded again at as Jap plane was hit and crashed off our starboard beam.
18:30- steaming course at 135 at 19 knots we are 38 miles off Jap coastline - General Quarters sounded several times during the night - several enemy planes we knocked down. Some of our ships were damaged and one of our carriers was damaged pretty badly by a 500lb. bomb.
March 19- Morning G. Q. at Jap plane still chopping flares which
are overhead. Opened fire on a Jap
torpedo plane but missed - We are now 21 miles off
March 20- Morning G. Q. several boggies -
G.Q. at bombs
dropping all around us. Enemy high-level
bombers came in at 27, 000 ft. Suicide
plane crashed into one of our destroyers - Secured from General Quarters at . General Quarters again at with an enemy dive-bomber attack on
our carriers. Second plane attacked same
carrier - scored a bomb hit forward of bridge. Five now burning on carrier.
Planes continued to come out of the sun
and dropped bombs and torpedo but no hits. Near miss on one of our
March 21- Morning General Quarters secured and refueled ship. G.Q. at contacted boogies at 22 miles; also passed enemies mines. Secured from G.Q. for chow. G.Q. sounded again at as Jap - dive-bomber coming at 20 miles. Jap twin-engine bomber came out of sun and made a run on a carrier - dropping bombs as it passed over. Anti-aircraft score hit on plane causing it to flame - it attempted to crash dive one of our destroyers but failed. The past five days have been really busy ones. Our entire force suffered 251 dead and a number missing. Burial services were held at and . Our colors were lowered at half-mast. Our group has shot down fourteen planes altogether; we exploded five mines; picked up several pilots including some Jap Pilots. All ships in our force has taken near-misses and plenty of shrapnel. Murray now has 7 planes, one ship and damage to subs for her credit.
March 22- Refueled ship today and joined our original formation. We will again hit
March 23- Morning General Quarters sounded at - secured for breakfast an hour later.
We received orders to screen for the
battlewagon as they will bombard the
March 24- Morning G.Q. - carrier air craft gave Japs-pounding. Nothing new happening.
March 25- Morning G. Q. - Refueled ship. News report stated Jap task-force with
reinforcements was sunk in an attempt to land on
March 25- Joined oilers and supply ships today. Received stores and refueled ship. Underway again destination unknown.
March 27- Routine morning General Quarters - secured at with several large groups of boogies
closing in - (we are attacking
…it’s target. Jap torpedo plane came in low and fast. We managed to fire enough rounds at it to cause it to crash on our Portside. In fact I believe a couple of jo-potts were thrown in. We opened fire too late! The plane dropped its torpedo at 100 yards distance striking our ship above the waterline - passing on through a forward compartment and exploding as it went out the port side. Shrapnel riddled gun #1 and #2 included a large section of port side of ship. One man was killed and six badly injured. The wounded were late and transferred to a carrier for medical attention. We took on a large amount of water before holes were welded - so far the ship is still floating. Our speed is 2 knots. At secured from G.Q. and held burial services for the dead. Received orders to proceed with task group 58.2 going S.E. to meet tankers. Haven’t the slightest idea where we will go for repairs. We now have eight Jap planes to our credit.
March 28- Morning General quarters and secured an hour later. We are now with task group 58.2- joined them last night. Met tankers at . Traveled course S.E. all day while other ships refueled. We refueled our ship and are now proceeding with one damaged carrier, one destroyer and two destroyer escorts acting as our escort. Our sound gear is out so they are our protection against subs. Received storm warning today. A storm won’t help this ship out anyway!
March 29- Underway for some port repairs. Taking on water up toward and have formed a bucket brigade. Typhoon reported 850 miles from us, but we are in back of it. The water is rough with waves 20 feet high and pounding the forward part of our ship.
March 30- No mishaps as yet - Ocean very rough! We expect to be in a safe port in two days.
March 31- still underway - Water is calmer and we can breathe a sigh of relief -
April1- Easter today and also April fools day - Entered
April 2 - 4 Shifted anchorages twice - Expect to go to
April 5 - 7 Set special at as we entered
April 8 - 9 At sea - crossed International date line and gained a day. We were lucky in missing out on surface engagement between the Japs and us on the 6th.
April 10- At sea. All’s well.
April 11- Entered
April 12- Went into Dry Dock to have repairs for damage done. Authorities examining the fragments of the object which hit us discovered it to be a 1100 lbs. Bomb and not a torpedo - We shaped two horse shoes out of fragments and placed them where the bomb entered and left ship.
April 13 - 16 Ship in dry docks - I
left today for four day rest and recreation at Camp Andrews on other side of
April 20 - Returned from rest-camp and now to settle down to some hard work. Received news via radio that President Roosevelt died.
April - 21 to May 5 - In dry dock.
May - 6 Left dry dock- ship has been repaired and is now prepared to seek out the enemy and destroy them. I’ll guess I’ll get some more needed actions.
May 7 to 27 – In and out of
May 27 to June 3- In and out of
June 3 to 9 – Same routine as before.
June 9 – Out today firing exercise
torpedo runs. One torpedo being
accidentally fired while tubes were trained in, went
completely through #2 stack. The fish pinned a torpedo man against #1 torpedo
tubes causing slight injury. We are now
having our stack repaired at
June 10 to 11 – Tied up in
June 12 - Underway at – We are
headed for Siapan to join our old task-group 58. On the way we will bombard an island in the
June 13 to 17 - At sea holding battle drills. Will arrive at our objective tomorrow. Refueled ship today.
June 18 – At the island Jaluit – will
commence bombarding at . Marine pilots strafed and dive-bombed the
island. We have a battle-wagon and
another destroyer with us. Japs opened up with their shore-batteries and we heard five
shells whistle over our heads secured from G.P. a + e. on our way to
June 19 -20 On our way bound for Saipan – Sea calm, weather very rough. Nothing happening.
June 21- Today at word received via - radio that a cargo ship (American) was torpedoed by enemy sub. We are fifteen miles from scene of action but cannot go in search of sub because of escorting battle wagon.
June 22. Underway at sea. Today at we got a good sub contact, but sub got away after we sounded depth-charge alarm.
June 23- Enter and Anchored in
June 24- Anchored as before-
June 25- Took aboard ammunition and stores and got underway for Einwetok in the
June 26- At sea bound for Einewetok – Held drills -
June 27 to July 2 - Anchored in
July 3- Today we got the straight “dope”. We are bound for Wake Island to intercept a Jap Hospital Ship to see what it contains and what it is doing out near Wake Island. Thirty special men were picked to board the ship and they were given instructions in handling small - arms, and what to do in case the ship proves hostile.
July 4- We will overtake ship this evening around . Ship was sighted at . I was challenged
and to receive boarding party. It was a large ship (converted liner). The ship was examined and told to proceed on its way. After it leaves Wake, we will board it again.
July 5- We will go aboard again at to what the ship picked up at
(The following is copies of messages received from the enemy ship
to our ship the
Name of ship is TAKASAGO MARU
Captain agrees with inspection of his ship=
Destination of ship is
There are one hundred-fifty nine in crew & one hundred-Eighty nine in Medical personnel.
Tubes have been removed from Radio transmitter.
Captain says he is observing Radio silence.
Ship left Muroran on Hokaido in the Empire - June 27.
Captain states medical personnel are Navy. All others except boat crews & radio are civilians.
(Our executive officers’ signal)
“Boring isn’t it?” White.
Captain states before being stopped he planned to stop one or two hrs. at Wake depending on whether X does not know how many patients he was to pick up.
Investigation of superstructures finished, now starting in forward holes.
Estimate inspection about one-third complete.
Estimate another hour or two at the most. Meeting at most cooperation. Four stripe Medical officer is in command name of Kakisaka X Merchant skipper appears to be Navigator N. this trip - saw our plane this morning and saw one of our subs the 28th or 29th.
Inspection completed X no evidence of any violations X will leave in about ten minutes after making entry in log and warning captain (Jap) about radio silence.
Thank Captain for his cooperation.
Tell him he may proceed when our boats are clear - advise me when you get back.
Are boats (ours) still lying off (ans.)
Your - Affirmative
Entry completed leaving now whale boat will follow later.
Whale-boat is returning now (ques.)
Is all party clear ship (ans.)
Second versa is same as first.
No Americans or Allies aboard
Nine-hundred and sixty patients aboard.
Four-hundred Ninety X Navy Four-hundred and eighty-four- Army nine Malnutrition X Fourteen wounded.
You have a red light showing in Gun #1
Inspection about three-quarters completed - only questions will be
about the Malnutrition patients which the doctor stated are all qualified
details on that in a moment. Doctor
05 0 patients X ten to fifteen % T.B. X Fourteen
wounded X remainder Malnutrition.
Least severe Malnutrition barely able to move X Estimates 15 or 20% of total patients will not survive voyage Doctor states all are hospital patients 25% of Malnutrition patients will be on their feet in a month.
Stores situation satisfactory so far – if it continues that way – shall I direct ship to proceed
…orders for getting…join our task-group…fuled
ship and left
July 20 & 21- Arrived at our rendezvous with tankers and refueled ship, pick-up …passenger for delivery to another ship. Commence delivering mail and we …ished, join our squadron and received …the orders.
-July 22- Today we were given picket… with four other destroyers 50 miles… ont of tack group – Our carrier
First wave... attack….but later…again… another boogie…We had several boogie contact …the nights - but was not attacked…
July 23-24- Out on Pickett duty…our planes are still attacking
July 25- Still on picket duty…Morning General Quarters sounded…0:15
as our aircraft peppered
…hour…we…the night we saw…high in the air in…fighters got it. We had a couple of contacts, but were friendly.
July 26- General quarters at with boogies closing-in., proved friendly. We are now relieved from picket duty by three other destroyers at returned back to main force which are refueling. We refueled ship, made two final runs, and held anti-aircraft practice.
July 27- Morning General Quarters… - refueled and provisioned…Sea very
rough. Underway…launch air attack on
Tonight we… again, and… force in the…
July 29 - Morning G.Q. at - refueled ship at . Nothing… doing today. At the depth… alarm followed by general… sounded as we made a clear contact on enemy sub. We lost contact… continued search for an hour and… secured. Boogies during nite… we were not attacked.
July 30 - Morning Generals… sounded at - Refueled… ship was checked from stem… for faults which were correct… received orders along with…
The lagoon… and we enter at… and left at a…We sank a small craft by gun fire and another can fired two torpedoes at another, causing damage. None of our ships suffered any damage. We entered the lagoon at and left at .
The following messages was sent from Commander of Task force 38 to our squadron (25th squadron)
... tactical maneuvering CMA Fire… X communications and all… of a good Destroyer sailor… most ably demonstrated last… in a tence and daring raid.
“Loud a…For a well p…in the best…you have been…Emperors Black List. X Ha…
July 31 - We are now out of …of
Aug 1- Dull day today…around, screening our group…wondering what we’ll do no[w]…
is terrible - I’m losing weight. As of today we have been on the
open sea (just
Aug 30- In position as usual - Refueled ship & transferred
passengers from one ship to another. Received stateside mail. At
orders for taking…large carrier by to
We are on our way now.
Aug. 31- Our orders have been changed again. We delivered
one large carrier to another tas[k] force. Where it relieved another
carrier. The other carrier will then be escorted, back to Eniwe[tok]
Sept. 1 – At sea screening task… 38.3 We haven’t seen land for… good while. We changed comm… yesterday. We have a new Ca… Today we had a couple more… for typhoid and typhus.
Sept 2- 4
Nothing new h… happened.
We are still at sea… day was declared Sept. 2. I ce…
by having a cup of coffee. Tomor… we will be in
Sept 5 - 11 – We have been ordered… escort a large carrier back to
Sept. 13 - 15
Sept. 16 - 22
Moved away from the tender and tied-up alongside another
destroyer. We are now painting the ship
in preparation for the return to the
Sept. 23 - 24
Took aboard 90 passengers for passage to
Sept. 25 – Underway for
Sept. 26 - 30 At… Canal…
Oct. 1 - 6 We are now between
Oct. 7 - 8 Today - we arrived in
Oct. 9 - 11 Tied-up at a dock
Nov. 7 - 8 Thirty days leave was given to 1/3 of crew. Still the ship is at the
Nov. 9 - 18 – Liberty in Charleston Stinks!
Nov. 19 – Today I left the U.S.S. Murray for good!