USS Corry (DD-463)
LOSS OF SHIP REPORT
AND D-DAY ACTION REPORT
(Cover + 12 Pages)
(FULLY DECLASSIFIED)

 


DECLASSIFIED
SECRET

ACTION REPORT

 

  USS CORRY                                               DD 463

NO SERIAL                                                19 JUNE 1944

 

ACTION REPORT AND REPORT OF LOSS OF SHIP, SUBMISSION
OF.

             ASSIGNED TO FIRE SUPPORT UNIT 3, OPERATING
             IN UTAH AREA OFF ILES ST, MARCOUF, BAIE DE
             LA SEINE DURING INVASION OF NORMANDY WITH
             TASK UNIT 125.8.3 ON 6 JUNE 1944.  STRUCK
             MINE AND SANK.




                                                          76338


                 OFFICE OF NAVAL RECORDS AND LIBRARY
 


 


 

                                                                              U.S.S. CORRY (DD463)
                       T O P  S E C R E T                   C/O FLEET POST OFFICER,
                                                                             NEW YORK, NEW YORK.
              
DECLASSIFIED                                                                                 19 June 1944
 
  From:           The Commanding Officer.
To:               The Secretary of the Navy.
Via:              (1)  The Commander Destroyer Division TWENTY, (CTU
                            125.8.3).

                     (2)  The Commander Cruiser Division SEVEN (CTG
                            125.8)
                     (3)  The Commander Task Force 125 (Commander Force
                            UNIT.)
                     (4)  The Commander Task Force 122 (Commander West-
                            ern Task Force).
                     (5)  The commander Twelfth Fleet.
                     (6)  The Commander in Chief, United States Fleet

Subject:        Action Report and Report of Loss of ship; Sub-
                      mission of.

Reference:   (a)  CO CORRY Top Secret desp. 151100B of June 1944.
                      (b)  Art.  841(3), U.S. Navy Regulations.
                      (c)  Art.  712, U.S. Navy Regulations.
                      (d)  CO CORRY Secret Mailgram to ComNavEu listing
                             known dead and missing #102300B of June 1944
                      (e)  CO CORRY Secret ltr. of 11 June to ComNavEu,
                             copy to BuM&S, listing known dead, missing, and
                             injured.

           1.        Supplementing reference (a), the following full re-
port on the action and loss of the U.S.S. CORRY (DD463) is sub-
mitted as required by references (b)  and  (c). 

         
(a) For operation xxxxxx the CORRY was assigned the mission
          of a fire support ship of Fire Support Unit THREE in station
          #3, about 4,000 yards off UTAH beach, approximately 2 miles,
          bearing 280T from the St. Marcouf Islands, coast of France.
          H hour, as will be subsequently referred to, was designated
          as being 0630B, June 6, 1944.  The specifically assigned duties
          of this vessel are chronologically presented as follows:

                (1)  To arrive transport area, having escorted convoy U-2B
                across the English Channel, at about H minus 4 hours.  Com-
                manding Officer U.S.S. FITCH was escort commander.

                (2)  To proceed down boat lane toward Red and Green beaches,
                in echelon formation, with U.S.S. HOBSON (CDD20) and U.S.S.
                FITCH at about H minus 2 hours, with view to preceding
                first boat waves toward landings. 

                (3)  To depart boat lane for fire support station #3 at H
                minus 80 minutes.  

                                                           - 1 -

               FILMED
 

 


                                                             U.S.S. CORRY (DD463)
   DECLASSIFIED
  T O P  S E C R E T               
                                                                                19 June 1944

Subject:        Action Report and Report of Loss of Ship; Submission
                      of.
                                                       
         (4)  In case of heavy enemy shore battery opposition, be-
         tween H minus 2 hours and H minus 40 minutes, signal "Zebra"
         would be sent to bombardment ships, which would require
         CORRY firing on targets 13A and 14A approximately located be-
         tween Montebourg and Fontenay, coast of France.

         (5)  To arrive station #3 at H minus 50 minutes.

         (6)  To commence direct fire at beach targets #80,  82,  84
         86,  88, 90,  92,  and  94, extending from prospective beachhead,
         northwestwards toward  Quineville, at H minus 40 minutes.
         Rate of fire to be 8 rounds per minute.

         (7)  To cease firing at H hour upon receipt of black smoke
         rocket signal, meaning "troops have landed, lift your fire".

         (8)  To fire at targets of opportunity after H hour.

         (9)  To answer call fire after landing of shore fire control
         party after H plus 210 minutes.

     (b)  The CORRY carried out all duties as listed in paragraph
     (d),  (1)  to  (5)  inclusive, except signal "Zebra" was not re-
     cieved and consequently targets 13A and 14A were not fired upon.
     The remainder of the schedule, as presented above, was upset in
     the following manner:

         (1)  At H  minus 85 minutes the FITCH and this vessel were
         fired upon by shore batteries, unlocated,  just prior to de-
         parting boat lane to report to our respective fire support
         stations.

         (2)  At H minus 70 minutes, while en route to fire support
         station #3, at speed of about 3 knots, commenced firing
         almost simultaneously with FITCH on shore battery flashes on
         beach bearing about 260
T from ship's position 2 miles due
         west of St. Marcouf Islands.  Fire was for purposes of cover-
         ing FITCH, which was at this time about 3,000 yards north of
         this vessel, on course of about 010
T.

         (3)  At H minus 50 minutes, upon arrival assigned position #3,
         stopped and anchored at short stay, as current was flooding
         at 1 knots at this time.

                                                        - 2 -

 

 


                                                             U.S.S. CORRY (DD463)
   DECLASSIFIED  
  T O P  S E C R E T               
                                                                                19 June 1944

Subject:        Action Report and Report of Loss of Ship; Submission
                      of.
                                                         

         (4)  At H minus 40 minutes, silenced shore battery firing
         on this vessel after having expended about 110 rounds
         5"/38.  Visibility poor, sea calm, wind force 1.  FITCH
         having been fired upon considerably, had by this time
         moved to a position that appeared to be about 3 miles due
         north of St. Marcouf Island.  The U.S.S. QUINCY at this
         time bore about 070
T, distance about 9,000 yards.

         (5)  At H minus 30 minutes commenced firing on assigned
         beach (10 minutes late), target #80, bearing about 218
T,
         range about 5200 was first target.  Fired 12 salvos direct
         fire using navigational and optical ranges.  Then shifted
         to #82, employing same procedure.

         (6)  At about H minus 20 minutes, smoke screens were laid
         so completely by planes that all vessels in force UNIT
         appeared to be screened very effectively except the CORRY.
         The screen lay to seaward and appeared to extend from the
         St. Marcouf Islands northward for several miles.

         (7)  Immediately after the laying of the smoke screen, at
         about H minus 15 minutes, fire was concentrated on this
         vessel.  The anchor was lifted from short stay and abrupt
         maneuvers were commenced to throw off salvos, by giving
         ahead flank speed, stop, backing, right full rudder, and
         left full rudder, giving due regards to reefs which ex-
         tended nearly the entire seaward side.

         (8)  Rapid continuous fire was commenced on flashes of
         nearest battery, which was firing in salvo at this vessel,
         bearing about 252
T, range about 10,000 yards, behind the
         town of St. Marcouf.  The flashes were very prominent but
         the battery itself was unseen and there was no outside ship
         spotting available.  Firing was conducted by obtaining true
         bearing on flashes and residual smoke, introducing same to
         computer and director, while coaching director on.  Optical
         ranging on flashes was attempted.  Rapid continuous fire to
         seek range.  As this vessel drew to the northward, the bear-
         ing of the shore battery decreased to 246
T.  During this
         period this vessel was being fired upon by other batteries also.

         (9)  At 0633 (H plus 3 minutes) this vessel hit a mine under
         the engineering spaces that caused the immediate flooding
         of the forward engineroom, the forward fireroom, and the
         flooding of the after fireroom very shortly thereafter.
         This was accompanied by the loss of all electric power and
         lighting at the same time.

                                                        - 3 -

 

 


                                                             U.S.S. CORRY (DD463)
   DECLASSIFIED  
  T O P  S E C R E T               
                                                                                19 June 1944

Subject:        Action Report and Report of Loss of Ship; Submission
                      of.
                                                         

             (10)  Just previous to hitting the mine, right full rudder
             had been given and 25 knots had been rung up because of
             the proximity of a near miss on the starboard side (firing
             was to port).  When the ship was mined, as in (9) above,
             the CORRY was just starting a right turn at increasing
             speed.  As a result of the mining effect, the rudder jammed
             hard right and a high speed circle movement commenced.
             Hand steering got the ship headed towards the sea, but at
             0637 all steam was lost in the after engine room, the only
             engineering space not yet flooding.

             (11)  Boats were lowered for purposes of towing the ship
             through shoal water towards the open sea, i.e., the fire
             support area of the larger ships.  General signal, "This
             ship needs help", was hoisted, as all communications were
             out.

             (12)  At about 0639 word was passed to prepare to abandon
             ship, as at this time water had reached the main deck,
             though the ship was on an even keel but sagging badly.

             (13)  At about 0641 abandon ship was ordered, for at this
             time the main deck was under 2 feet of water and the ship
             was broken amidships.  Abandon ship was carried out with-
             out confusion and the Commanding Officer was the last to
             leave the ship.  At this time the stacks had leaned to-
             gether, the fantail and the bow had risen but the entire
             main deck and most of the midships superstructure were
             under water.

        (c)  Subsequent happenings after abandon ship had been com-
        pleted were of the following nature:

             (1)  The fantail of the CORRY was hit by a small caliber
             projectile, rupturing smoke screen generator causing
             toxic effect on survivors in the water.  The port 40mm
             station was also hit, causing apparent detonation of some
             40mm projectiles at ready stowage.

             (2)  The two hour period of immersion was perhaps the most
             difficult of all for the survivors, for during this entire
             time shells were falling causing further dead and wounded.
             The currents in the area were of such nature as to render
             swimming away from the ship very difficult.  One raft was

                                                        - 4 -

 

 



                                                             U.S.S. CORRY (DD463)
   DECLASSIFIED  
  T O P  S E C R E T               
                                                                                19 June 1944

Subject:        Action Report and Report of Loss of Ship; Submission
                      of.
                                                         

            carried in a complete circle about the CORRY and upon
            passing the shoreward side, received a near miss that
            caused more casualties an hour after the sinking of that
            vessel.  As a result of the temperature of the water,
            54F, several men died of exposure.

            (3)  Survivors were rescued in the time interval of 0830
            to 0900 by the FITCH, HOBSON, BUTLER, and PT-199.  An hour
            prior to this the CORRY was observed to be settled in
            about 6 fathoms of water with only the director, the mast,
            top of bridge, and tip of bow visible.  The shore batteries
            ceased their intermittent firing with the arrival of the
            above mentioned vessels.  The FITCH and HOBSON entered the
            survivor area with all guns firing at the shore batteries
            on one side of their respective ships, while lowering
            boats and cargo nets on their other sides.

            (4)  At about H plus 4 hours the bulk of the survivors
            were transferred to the U.S.S. BARNETT.  At this time
            the Commanding Officer of the CORRY reported the loss of
            the CORRY to Commander Force UNIT and requested that
            security measures be instituted as that vessel had sunk
            in shoal water near the coast of France.

            (5)  At about H plus 6 hours the BARNETT sailed for Port-
            land, England, arriving there at about 0300B, 7 June 1944.

            (6)  At about 0600B 7 June 1944 the BARNETT departed for
            Falmouth, England, arriving there at about 2000B 7 June.
            Survivors at this time were transferred to the U.S. Naval
            Advanced Base, Falmouth.

            (7)  At about 1100B 8 June, the CORRY survivors, except-
            ing those remaining at the U.S. Naval Dispensary, Fal-
            mouth, entrained for Plymouth, England, arriving at the
            U.S. Naval Advanced Base at 1600B 8 June 1944.  During
            this period the CORRY officers were sent to Exeter for
            outfitting and the commanding officer was ordered to
            London and returned to Plymouth shortly thereafter.

            (8)  At about 2300B 12 June 1944 the CORRY survivors were
            transferred to BASE TWO, Rosneath, Scotland.  At this
            latter base the crew was organized into the status of a
            vessel afloat, with office space and procedure instituted.

                                                        - 5 -

 

 



                                                             U.S.S. CORRY (DD463)
   DECLASSIFIED  
  T O P  S E C R E T               
                                                                                19 June 1944

Subject:        Action Report and Report of Loss of Ship; Submission
                      of.
                                                         


            2.      Report of performance and damage in the various de-
partments is as follows:

                
                                GUNNERY

            (a)  Over 400 rounds of 5"/38 cal. projectiles fired, em-
            ploying direct fire and optical ranges on targets at ranges
            varying from 5 to 10,000 yards.  No machine gun or torpedo
            firing.  Guns functioned smoothly.  Rate of fire very high
            when firing rapid continuous fire.

            (b)  Concussion effects:

                 (1)  All guns whipped out of train into stops.

                 (2)  Torpedoes came partly out of tubes, three of them
                 having hot runs in tubes.

                 (3)  Computer face glasses jumped up into operators faces.
                 Glass did not shatter because of previous preparation.
                 Side plates of computer came off.

                 (4)  Gun mounts and handling rooms deluged with water.

                 (5)  Gun crews thrown off feet.

                 (6)  Machine gunners at midships machine guns and torpedo-
                 men thrown from stations to main deck and overboard.

                 (7)  Machine gun control officer at director base thrown
                 to deck.

                 (8)  Control officer in director wounded in back of head
                 by striking range finder optical box.

                 (9)  5"/38 mount #1 jumped off roller path, upper hoist
                 badly distorted.

                 (10)  Director jammed in train.

                 (11)  Ready service shells in all handling rooms tumbled
                 from strapped possition.

                                                        - 6 -

 

 



                                                             U.S.S. CORRY (DD463)
   DECLASSIFIED  
  T O P  S E C R E T               
                                                                                19 June 1944

Subject:        Action Report and Report of Loss of Ship; Submission
                      of.
                                                         


                                                 ENGINEERING

            (a)  Four boilers on the line, using main engine combination.
            Split plant operation throughout.  Varying speeds were em-
            ployed, from back full to ahead flank, i.e., 25 knots.

            (b)  Damage effects.

                 (1)  The forward fireroom and forward engineroom flooded
            immediately and simultaneously.  For this reason it is be-
            lieved that the mine was struck in the vicinity of the
            bulkhead between these spaces on the starboard side in
            the region of the turn of the bilges.  #2 boiler was rup-
            tured and the resultant escape of steam killed or badly
            burned all personnel in this space.  Steam pressure on
            gages in forward engineroom went down immediately.  All
            electric power and lighting lost.

            (2)  In the after fireroom and engineroom unit, flooding
            was at lesser rate, thus giving time for attempting main-
            tainence of the speed of the ship.  However, the source
            of feed water to boilers #3 and #4 was lost through a
            combination of the following circumstances:

               a.  All electric power and lighting lost.

               b.  Suction line to #4 main feed pump in after engine-
               room ruptured and by the time suction could be shifted
               to #3 main pump the after fireroom was flooded, as this
               later space flooded in approximately three minutes.

            Some speed was maintained in the after engineroom for a
            few minutes but in the after fireroom the personnel were
            busy securing the boilers because of low water and the
            rising level of sea water in this later space.  The after
            fireroom was flooded because of two holes in the hull,
            one located under the torn loose bed plate of the #2
            fire and bilge pump and the other in the vicinity of the
            feed water tank B-17, both on the starboard side. In
            addition, the bulkhead between the forward engineroom
            and the after fireroom was sheared in several places causing
            an entry of water from the rapidly filling forward engine-
            room.


                                                        - 7 -

 

 



                                                             U.S.S. CORRY (DD463)
   DECLASSIFIED  
  T O P  S E C R E T               
                                                                                19 June 1944

Subject:        Action Report and Report of Loss of Ship; Submission
                      of.
                                                         

            (c)  Concussion effects:

                (1)  All gratings and floor plates, although securely
                screwed in place, flew up.

                (2)  Main generators tripped out.

                (3)  Fire control switchboard in plot arced badly.

                (4)  Main gyro jumped out of gimbals and fell to deck,
                striking man in plot.

                (5)  Cables to fire control switchboard severed and hanging
                in strands, knife and rotary switches flew off.

 
                                HULL AND DAMAGE CONTROL

            (a)  Condition ABLE was set through the ship and general
            quarters throughout period covered by this report.  All wing
            fuel oil tanks were full of oil.  Approximately 90% of fuel
            oil capacity on board at time of sinking.  Full load dis-
            placement of the ship upon hitting the mine estimated to be
            2500 tons.  This is based upon the following approximations:

                (1)  Fuel 90% of capacity.

                (2)  Ammunition, 5"/38 - 85%;  M.G. - 100%.


                (3)  Water tanks filled.

                (4)  Well stocked with commissary and ship's service stores.

                (5)  Stores and spare parts nearly 100%.


            (b)  Damage effects:

                (1)  Main deck split open width of ship at frame 100.
                Fissure was about one foot.  The severed edges of main
                deck slanted downward, because of rising of bow and stern.
                One edge lower than other by several inches.  The hull
                at frame 100 on port and starboard side was observed to
                be also split.  It is believed that this split extended
                down to the keel and that the keel was severed.  It is


                                                        - 8 -

 

 



                                                             U.S.S. CORRY (DD463)
   DECLASSIFIED  
  T O P  S E C R E T               
                                                                                19 June 1944

Subject:        Action Report and Report of Loss of Ship; Submission
                      of.
                                                         

                further believed that the main deck superstructure was
                the only strength member keeping ship ends together
                during sinking.

                (2)  Fresh water B-15 located in after fireroom ruptured.
                It is believed that the hull also ruptured at this point.

                (3)  Port bulkhead of #3 magazine compartment, C-303M,
                bulged in.

                (4)  After conning station windscreen ripped up from deck,
                pushed back against gyro repeater.

                (5)  Debris and wreckage piled over opening of starboard
                access hatch to check level in forward fireroom.

                (6)  Port 40mm gun and ready stowage ammunition destroyed
                by one shell hit during abandon ship.

                (7)  Crew's washroom destroyed by one shell hit, entering
                port side of after superstructure during abandon ship.

                (8)  Smoke generator on fantail demolished by one shell
                hit after abandon ship.

            (c)  Concussion effects:

                (1)  Starboard wind of bridge near #3  20mm gun buckled.

                (2)  After wing of bridge bulged up in center.

                (3)  Both stacks leaning toward one another (sagging effect).

                (4)  Magnetic compass stand torn loose and navigator's
                chart desk torn to deck, and flag bags torn loose.

                (5)  Mast was bent at level of director and both guy wires
                severed.

                (6)  Hatch in second platform leading to A-407-M, #2 mag-
                azine jammed shut by distortion of plating, requiring men
                of #2 magazine to go through #1 powder room and exit
                through #1 magazine.

              (7)  Lathe in machine shop toppled over. 


                                                       - 9 -

 

 



                                                             U.S.S. CORRY (DD463)
   DECLASSIFIED  
  T O P  S E C R E T               
                                                                                19 June 1944

Subject:        Action Report and Report of Loss of Ship; Submission
                      of.
                                                         

            (d)  After abandon ship the CORRY was observed to be hit
            several times by projectiles in the forward and after hull
            sections that yet protruded from the water.

 
                                RADIO, SOUND AND RADAR

            (a)  Sound gear was not in use because of suspected acoustic
            mines as so stated in the operation order.  Radio silence
            was maintained.  After mine casualty, all power was lost.
            SG radar was in use for navigation purposes; all other radars
            were not required during action and previous thereto, re-
            mained silent during approach phase.

            (b)  Concussion effects:

                (1)  Radars in transmitter room leaned toward one another
                having been torn loose from their holding down plates.

                (2)  PPI scopes smashed; sound gear recorder smashed and
                torn loose.

                (3)   All radio equipment in main radio room remained se-
                curely in place, however, all telegraphic typewriters
                fell to deck.
 

            (c)  Security:

                (1)  Confidential publications dropped overboard in
                weighted bags.

                (2)  Radars in radar transmitter room destroyed by deton-
                ators.

                (3)  ECM wheels dropped overboard.

                             SUPPLY DEPARTMENT AND SHIP'S SERVICE

            (a)  Two days previous to D-Day over 500 loaves of bread had
            been baked for purposes of making sandwiches during general
            quarters periods.  All preparations were made for the serving
            of food and coffee by personnel of the three damage control
            parties.

            (b)  Losses incurred are of the following nature:

                                                             - 10 -

 

 



                                                             U.S.S. CORRY (DD463)
   DECLASSIFIED  
  T O P  S E C R E T               
                                                                                19 June 1944

Subject:        Action Report and Report of Loss of Ship; Submission
                      of.
                                                         

              (1)  Disbursing funds in safe in the amount of $40,732.09.

              (2)  Ship's service funds in safe approximately $850.

              (3)  Provisions in the amount of approximately $18,000.

              (4)  Ship's services store stock in the amount of approxi-
              mately $1200.

              (5)  All ship's equipage and spares.


          (c)  Pay accounts were saved.

                                                 PERSONNEL

          (a)  Crew was at general quarters during period covered by
          this report.

          (b)  First injury received at about 0630 by man incurring
          shell fragment wounds in left shoulder from near miss on
          starboard side amidships.

          (c)  Out of a complement of 19 officers and 265 men the follow-
          ing statistics are presented to indicate the extent of pers-
          onnel losses:

              (1)  Known dead - 0 Officers; 6 men.

              (2)  Missing - 1 Officer; 15 men.

              (3)  Injured - 1 Officer; 32 men.

              (4)  Uninjured - 17 Officers; 212 men.


          (d)  Performance of all officers and men was creditable.
          Meritorious acts have been a matter of recommendation
          for award by separate correspondence.


          (e)  All ship's records were lost.

                                               NAVIGATION

          (a)  The gun fire support area assigned was somewhat hazard-
          ous because of the reefs and shoal water extending to the
          seaward side in the vicinity of the St. Marcouf Islands.


                                                        - 11 -

 

 



                                                             U.S.S. CORRY (DD463)
   DECLASSIFIED  
  T O P  S E C R E T               
                                                                                19 June 1944

Subject:        Action Report and Report of Loss of Ship; Submission
                      of.
                                                         

            (b)  By means of SG radar during the approach phase and
            optical bearings after D minus 1 hour there was no parti-
            cular difficulty in affixing the ship's position for navi-
            gational and firecontrol purposes.

            3.          Because of the fact that just prior to H hour, the
ship was being heavily fired upon by shore batteries, emitting
large flashes, it was believed for a long time that the cause of
the fatal damage of the ship was a salvo of heavy caliber proj-
ectiles.  However, as the result of the review of the concussion
effect throughout the ship and the revelation of the fact that
practically every man on the ship was thrown from his feet re-
gardless of the location of his battle station, it is now fully
believed that the major damage was due to a mine and that the
shelling received simultaneously and shortly thereafter resulted
in merely incidental damage.

            4.          The CORRY sank in about six fathoms of water in
latitude 49 - 30' - 50" N., longitude 01 - 11' - 30" W., in
vicinity of the St. Marcouf Islands in the Bay of the Seine, coast
of France.

                                                
                                                            G. D. Hoffman.
                                                         
      Copy to: CinCLant
                     ComDesLant
                     ComDesRon 10




 
                                                                                 

 

Actual numbers:
24 crewmembers were killed
60 were injured


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