• Short Summary

    BOARD USS CANBERRA, MAY 26 (AP)-FLAG-DRAPED CASKETS OF THREE UNKNOWN DEAD OF THE LAST TWO WARS WERE TRANSFERRED TODAY TO DECK OF THIS MISSILE CRUISER IN A LONELY BUT IMPRESSIVE SCENE AT SEA.

  • Description

    BOARD USS CANBERRA, MAY 26 (AP)-FLAG-DRAPED CASKETS OF THREE UNKNOWN DEAD OF THE LAST TWO WARS WERE TRANSFERRED TODAY TO DECK OF THIS MISSILE CRUISER IN A LONELY BUT IMPRESSIVE SCENE AT SEA.

    SPECIAL CARRYING CASKETS, MOUNTED ON PLATFORMS AND TRANSPORTED BY A "HIGH LINE" SLING, LIFTED THE DEAD FROM THE DECK OF THE CRUISER BOSTON LESS THAN TWO HUNDRED FEET AWAY.

    THE COFFINS OF THE WORLD WAR II DEAD FROM THE PACIFIC AND FROM EUROPE WERE BROUGHT ACROSS TO THIS CEREMONIAL SHIP FIRST. THEN CAME THE CASKET OF THE KOREAN DEAD, WHICH HAD BEEN BROUGHT TO THE BOSTON FROM THE DESTROYER BLANDY.

    FROM THE CANBERRA'S DECK THE COFFINS WERE TAKEN TO MISSILE HANDLING COMPARTMENT BELOW TO BE PREPARED FOR THE SECOND PHASE OF THE SEA CEREMONY.

    LATER IN THE AFTERNOON, IN THREE BRONZE COFFINS THE BODIES WILL BE BROUGHT BACK ON THE AFTERDECK. THERE NAVY HOSPITALMAN WILLIAM CHARETTE WAS TO CHOOSE BETWEEN THE TWO WORLD WAR TWO DEAD - WITHOUT KNOWING WHICH CAME FROM EUROPE AND WHICH FROM THE PACIFIC.

    THE WREATH PREPARED FOR CHARETTE TO LAY ON THE CASKET OF HIS SELECTION WAS MADE OF PINK AND BLACK CARNATIONS.

    SIX HONORARY PALLBEARERS WERE CHOSEN FROM EACH OF THE LAND, AIR AND SEA SERVICES.

    THEY WERE ARMY, SGT. 1.C.W.E. YARBROUGH OF BRUNSWICK, GA., NAVY GUNNER'S MATE 1.C. FILE. LAWRENCE OF THE CANBERRA'S CREW FROM GRAYDON, PA., AIR FORCE STAFF SGT. C. H. TOPPING, HAMPTON, VA.; COAST GUARD HOSPITALMAN 1.C. J.H. SMALL, PORTSMOUTH, VA.; AND CANBERRA MARINES PFC. R. LEFFLER PORTSMOUTH, CPL. J.W. WILSON, GASTON, ALA.

    THE CANBERRA HAD LEFT NORFOLK THIS MORNING IN MIST AND SLANTING RAIN FOR THE MEETING PLACE AT SEA, 25 MILES OFF VIRGIN. R.H. LEFFLER, PORTSMOUTH, VA.; CPL. J. V. WILSON, CADSDEN, ALA.

    THE CANBERRA HAD LEFT NORFOLK THIS MORNING IN MIST AND SLANTING RAIN FOR THE MEETING PLACE AT SEA, 25 MILES OFF VIRGINIA'S CAPE HENRY.

    A WEATHER PLANE HAD SCOUTED THE SEA, SEEKING A RELATIVELY CLEAR AND CALM AREA FOR THE TRANSFER CEREMONY AFTER FORBODING WEATHER LAST NIGHT.

    THE SEA WAS CALM, WITH ALMOST NO WIND AS THE CANBERRA MADE THE RENDEZVOUS WITH ITS SISTER SHIP, THE BOSTON AND THE DESTROYER BLANDY, WHICH CARRIED THE DEAD OF AMERICA'S TWO MOST RECENT WARS.

    THE BODY OF THE EUROPEAN DEAD OF WORLD WAR 2 FIRST WAS TRANSFERRED WITH THE SAME HIGH LINE SLING SYSTEM FROM THE DESTROYER BLANDY. THEN THE BOSTON TURNED IN A WIDE CIRCLE AND BEGAN HEADING ALONGSIDE THE CANBERRA. SAILORS TOSSED HEAVING LINES BETWEEN THE SHIPS, THEN HAULED THE WRIST-THICK HAWSERS UPON WHICH TROLLEY DEVICES TRAVELLED TO MOVE THE SLINGS AND CASKETS.

    BOTH SHIPS SLOWED TO HARDLY MORE THAN STEERAGEWAY SPEED WITH BOS TO THE EAST. WHITE CLAD SAILORS MANNED THE RAILS OF BOTH SHIPS WITH THE WHITENESS BROKEN HERE AND THERE BY SCARLET LIFE JACKETS OF THE HIGH LINE CREWS.

    THE TWO WARSHIPS MOVED ALONG ALMOST RAIL TO RAIL, SILENT IN THE SEA.

    THE FIRST CASKET WAS CARRIED INTO POSITION ON THE BOSTON, LIFTED CLEAR OF THE DECK AND MOVED OUT OVER THE SWIRLING WATER BETWEEN THE SHIPS. AT THE HALFWAY MARK, A BUGLE SOUNDED A SINGLE NOTE AND CREWS SNAPPED TO SALUTE. THE CASKET ROCKED AND SWAYED A LITTLE, THEN STEADIED AS IT APPROACHED THE CANBERRA'S RAIL SLOWLY IT WAS LOWERED TO THE DECK. THE BEARS PICKED IT UP AND CARRIED IT BELOW DECK. THE BEARERS PICKED IT UP AND CARRIED IT BELOW. THE TWO OTHERS FOLLOWED.

    IN LESS THAN 10 MINUTES ALL THREE CASKETS HAD BEEN PUT ABOARD THE CEREMONIAL SHIP.

    OF THE THREE UNKNOWNS, TWO ARE BOUND FOR THE HOMELAND FOR WHICH THEY DIED IN WORLD WAR II AND KOREA, TO BE BURIED BESIDE WORLD WAR I'S UNKNOWN SOLDIER IN ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVAVKL6CM08RZOX6GKDNNHFXL
    Media URN:
    VLVAVKL6CM08RZOX6GKDNNHFXL
    Group:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    26/05/1958
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Black & White
    Duration:
    00:06:43:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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