Countdown at Crossroads, 4 July 1946, Independence Day

5. Sub Skate after Able

Crew of the Skate stands at quarters as the submarine passes Vice Admiral W. H. P. Blandy’s flagship. (U.S. Navy)

Bikini Lagoon, 4 July 1946, Independence Day. The submarine Skate was one of the target vessels close to the explosion of the Test Able bomb on 1 July. The blast and the heat turned the sub into a mass of scrap. However, her tough hull refused to succumb and her tough crew was determined to put her back into operation, which they did a few days later, although it was unsafe to submerge.

Perhaps due to the serious nature of these atomic bomb tests, I don’t recall any Fourth of July fireworks at Operation Crossroads. However, I do remember Captain D. S. Crawford,  Commander M. E. Dennett, and the chaplain holding a brief ceremony for all hands on the fantail of the USS Fall River to commemorate Independence Day.

(Excerpted from Operation Crossroads – Lest We Forget! by William L. McGee.)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s