A Survivor's Story

A Survivor’s Story

Her keel of hard white oak was laid 22 September 1942 at the Fisher Boat Works in Detroit,

Michigan, and in May 1943 SC-7 18 became one of 438 subchasers launched during World War II.

On her foredeck she mounted a 40mm Bofors anti aircraft gun and mousetrap rails for ahead-thrown depth charges.

Three 20mm Oerlikon guns were mounted am ids hips, and racks for 300-1 b depth charges were mounted at the stern .

After shakedown she was sent to Miami for antisubmarine patrol and convoy escort duty, joining several other SCs in this acti vity, including 683 and 1061.

A Survivor’s Story When the three subchasers arrived at Brooklyn Navy Yard,

the COs were given strict orders to warn their crews to button their lips about their movements and the movements of the vessels.

They were told only that the ships had been selected for a special purpose,

which would be made known in due time.

Naturally much specul ation and rumor circul ated among crew members. Some of them believed they had been selected for a highly dangerous mission.

Their suspicions were reinforced a few days later when giant cranes hoisted the SC sonto three Liberty ships and preparations began.

A Survivor’s Story for transporting the crews and ships to an undisclosed destination.

When the day of departure arrived a pall of uncertainty weighed heavi ly in the minds of the sailors and loved ones who had come to bid them farewe ll.

The scene, always wrenching during wartime, was more poignant than usual.

After the ships were underway the men were told they were going to Belfast in British Northern Ireland.

The crossing took six days and was uneventful. In Belfast the SCs were hoisted back into the water,

and on 14 October 1943 the three vessels crossed the North Channel and steamed up the Firth of Clyde to an American base at Roseneath, Scotland.

The men on the subchasers were not aware that a few days earlier a group of Norwegian sailors had been sent to Roseneath and was eagerly awaiting their arrival.

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