He Lived Through USS Yorktown’s Sinking to Tell His Story

In the spring of 1938, after serving in a Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) camp in Idaho, a man named Ray Daves enlisted in the Navy. He reported for basic training the next year. He served at the Pacific Fleet Headquarters as a radioman when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. As a result, he was wounded in his hand. Later, he requested to be put on sea duty on a warship, and so he was assigned to the submarine Dolphin (SS-169).


World War II veteran Ray Daves. Source: spokesman.com

On the Dolphin, Daves served one tour of duty before being reassigned as a second class radioman aboard the aircraft carrier Yorktown (CV-5). After the Battle of the Coral Sea occurred (between May 7 and 8, 1942), wherein Yorktown was heavily damaged, the carrier returned to Pearl Harbor. The carrier was supposed to spend three months undergoing necessary repairs. But war is war, and those three months were cut down to just three days.

This is Ray Daves’ story (which was once told in the book Radioman).

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