VA. February 5, 1960
USS Daly, a veteran Destroyer of WWII and the Korean Era racing at full
speed toward a date with the mothball fleet
rolled sharply after being struck by a combination of two gigantic
sailors some caught without warning as they took motion pictures of the
destroyer’s wake through the rough water at 30 knots were swept
overboard as the ship experienced a 65-degree roll.
man was killed aboard the Daly as his arm was severed during the mishap.
Rescue ships were responsible for saving 5 of the sailors.
Daly picked up three of the survivors; the tanker Alabama rescued two
others. Five others were missing in the icy Atlantic waters. Survivors
estimated the swells to be 20 feet high.
first hand report from Apprentice Seaman David Formichella 19, of
Summit, NJ, stated, “ All of a sudden everyone started yelling and I
could see them sliding off the deck under the lifeline into the
next thing I knew I was there in the water with them”.
and John Buzzi, 33, Damage Controlman, First Class of Barrington, RI
to make their way to one of the life rafts swept overboard at the same
time. The raft partially inflated, but only after Buzzi cut through a
canvas protective cover attached to the raft.
Of Praying -
we hadn’t got to that raft, I don’t think we could have lasted much
longer”, said Formichella, “The only thing we did was pray”.
and Buzzi were immediately transferred from the Alabama to the Coast
Guard Cutter Marion and brought to Norfolk. They were both admitted to
the Portsmouth Naval Hospital for treatment.
of the three other sailors rescued by the Daly was Ralvin Souders, 26 of
Bethlehem, PA, said he was jerked away from the ventilator which he had
grabbed when the ship hit the swell.