World War IIUS Navy
USS Johnston (DD 557)
Service Number: 3721693
Born: July 3, 1922 - Eckley
Inducted: August 12, 1940 - Denver
Killed in action October 25, 1944 when the USS Johnston was sunk during the Battle off Samar in the Leyte Gulf.
Memorial Tablet, Manila American Cemetery, Philippines
Son of ? Husband of Julietta Barbara Moran.
Hometown was Eckley.
Tablets of the Missing
Manila American Cemetery
Photograph by ABMC Manila AC Staff
US Navy Leyte Gulf Memorial
San Diego, California
Photos contributed by Myron Hoffman
USS Johnston DD-557
US Navy Photo
A Fletcher Class destroyer, the USS Johnston was built in Seattle. Commissioned on October 27, 1943, the USS Johnston participated in the Marshall Islands invasions in February 1944. She did patrol duty in the Solomons March - May 1944 and then supported the invasion of Guam in July 1944.
In October 1944, the USS Johnston was assigned to screen Carrier Division 25s four escort carriers for the Leyte Gulf, Philippine Islands invasion. On the morning of October 25, 1944, the USS Johnston, with the rest of Task Group 77.4's screen of three destroyers and four destroyer escorts, beat off the Japanese Navy Central Force of four battleships, six heavy cruisers, two light cruisers and eleven destroyers which had slipped through San Bernardino Strait during the night and attacked the invasion support fleet.
By 0930 the USS Johnston, hit at least seven times with 6 and 14 inch shells plus several smaller shells, was dead in the water and shortly after 1000 rolled over and sank. However, the crew's aggressive attacks had resulted in the sinking of at least one Japanese cruiser and had caused the Japanese destroyers to abandon the attack on the escort carriers. Her captain, Commander Evans, was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor.
Of the crew of 327, only 141 men were recovered from the water. Of the 186 men lost, 50 were killed outright, 45 died of wounds on the ships rafts and 92, including the captain, were alive in the water after the crew abandoned ship but never recovered.
The USS Johnston won five battle stars in her short year of service and a Presidential Unit Citation for her crew's actions the morning of October 25.
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