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"Composure Amid a Naval Disaster" Topic

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Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian23 Aug 2022 5:29 p.m. PST

At the Battle of Savo Island, the first Allied warship to spot the approaching Japanese immediately found herself in a desperate fight for survival.

USNI: link

Shagnasty Supporting Member of TMP24 Aug 2022 8:52 a.m. PST

That was a bad night for the Allied fleet.

HMS Exeter24 Aug 2022 1:01 p.m. PST

I remember reading about the loss of the SS President Coolidge entering Espiritu Santo harbor 26 October, 1942.

Coolidge was a civilian liner carrying 5,000 US Army troops of the 172nd Rgt, 43rd Div. As a result of a serious miscommunication, Coolidge was unaware the harbor entrance had been mined, and proceeded to find 2 the hard way.

Knowing his ship was doomed, the captain called for abandon ship, as he tried to beach her. 5000 panicky landsmen, bunched into crowded berths began trying to get on deck and over the side.

In no time, anxiety began to give way to disorder as no one was able to get off as quickly as they wanted. Pushing gave way to shoving and trampling was close at hand.

Some soldier, with an IQ of about 400, bellowed over the din.


There was a sudden pause, a pregnant silence, then peals of laughter.

The evacuation went off smoothly after that. Only 2 lives were lost. One, a sailor, was killed when the first mine went off, the second, a soldier, who had been helping get men out of the infirmary and became trapped.

Coolidge fouled on a Coral Reef, capsized and sank in shallow water. She is still a popular dive site.

Nine pound round27 Aug 2022 10:42 a.m. PST

Heh. File that one under "The Uses of Allegedly Toxic Masculinity."

As usual, Kipling said it best: "to stand and be still to the Birkenhead drill/ is a damn tough bullet to chew."

Blutarski23 Sep 2022 2:18 p.m. PST

+1 HMS Exeter
+1 Nine Pound Round


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