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Old 19-08-2017, 12:08   #1
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USS Indianapolis Has Been Found, Finally

Something for those members who like naval history, or remember Captain Quint's story about his survival of the sinking of the WW2 cruiser USS Indianapolis in the movie "Jaws."

The Indianapolis delivered the atom bombs that ended the WW2 war in the Pacific, and while on its return and still on a secret mission, it was sunk by two torpedoes.

It is famous because of its tragic end.
"Around 800 of the ship’s 1,196 sailors and Marines survived the sinking, but after four to five days in the water, suffering exposure, dehydration, drowning, and shark attacks, only 316 survived."

Here is a different article, in Wikipedia that gives more details about the ship, crew, mission, and sinking.
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Indianapolis_(CA-35)

This discovery of the USS Indianapolis, after years of repeated searches, was just announced a few hours ago. It was located in 18,000 feet of water, and positively identified. The exact location will remain a secret (see article).

https://news.usni.org/2017/08/19/uss...wreckage-found
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Old 19-08-2017, 12:36   #2
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Re: USS Indianapolis Has Been Found, Finally

Thanks for this. I just re-read the book about the incident. No one even knew they were missing! SNAFU big time in communications.
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Old 19-08-2017, 12:56   #3
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Re: USS Indianapolis Has Been Found, Finally

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steady Hand View Post

This discovery of the USS Indianapolis, after years of repeated searches, was just announced a few hours ago. It was located in 18,000 feet of water, and positively identified. The exact location will remain a secret (see article).
good thing they are keeping it secret, other wise people would be showing up with their snorkel stuff to steal all the gold
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Old 19-08-2017, 13:10   #4
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Re: USS Indianapolis Has Been Found, Finally

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Originally Posted by sailorboy1 View Post
good thing they are keeping it secret, other wise people would be showing up with their snorkel stuff to steal all the gold


Exactly, why a secret I wonder?
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Old 19-08-2017, 13:22   #5
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Re: USS Indianapolis Has Been Found, Finally

I doubt that secret will last too long, it is a true memorial against actual fascism!

God Speed to those who served and those who made the ultimate sacrifice. There are many of us that are still part of a grateful nation.

Diving that would be quite expensive nonetheless...


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Old 19-08-2017, 13:48   #6
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Re: USS Indianapolis Has Been Found, Finally

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Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
Exactly, why a secret I wonder?


Because there are lots of ROVs that can reach that depth. And artifacts would sell for a pretty high price I imagine. It's a tomb, we should let her Rest In Peace.
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Old 19-08-2017, 14:11   #7
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Re: USS Indianapolis Has Been Found, Finally

Two ships, that I think were British, were sunk by the Japanese in relatively shallow water have been completely cut up for scrap by illegal salvors. The possibility of illegal salvage operations and the wish to keep the graves of so many sailors a sacred place is probably a reason that that they want to keep the location of the Indianapolis secret.
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Old 19-08-2017, 16:09   #8
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Re: USS Indianapolis Has Been Found, Finally

About 25 years ago I was Honored to Frame some items for a survivor of the USS Indianapolis that he had on him when it was sunk..
He was a little reluctant to talk about it, what he told me gave me Goosebumps.
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Old 19-08-2017, 19:53   #9
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Re: USS Indianapolis Has Been Found, Finally

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stu Jackson View Post
Thanks for this. I just re-read the book about the incident. No one even knew they were missing! SNAFU big time in communications.
I thought they delivered parts for one of the bombs dropped on Japan, and that their mission was so secretive that no one knew where they were?!
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Old 19-08-2017, 19:55   #10
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Re: USS Indianapolis Has Been Found, Finally

Quint's mates' resting place found at last.
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Old 19-08-2017, 19:55   #11
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Re: USS Indianapolis Has Been Found, Finally

Amazon Prime offers USS Indianapolis: The Legacy. Well worth watching.
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Old 19-08-2017, 20:19   #12
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Re: USS Indianapolis Has Been Found, Finally

There is a grey market for steel produced before the first atomic bomb test - and a black market for war memorabilia. I see no purpose for widely providing its location.
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Old 19-08-2017, 20:31   #13
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Re: USS Indianapolis Has Been Found, Finally

From the good Wikipedia article:
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_...polis_(CA-35)#


About the Secret Mission:

"After major repairs and an overhaul, Indianapolis received orders to proceed to Tinian island, carrying parts and the enriched uranium[citation needed] (about half of the world's supply of Uranium-235 at the time) for the atomic bomb Little Boy, which would later be dropped on Hiroshima.[14] Indianapolis departed San Francisco's Hunters Point Naval Shipyard on 16 July 1945, within hours of the Trinity test. USS Indianapolis set a speed record of  74 1⁄2 hours with an average speed of 29 knots (54 km/h; 33 mph) from San Francisco to Pearl Harbor which still stands today. Arriving at Pearl Harbor on 19 July, she raced on unaccompanied, delivering the atomic weapon components to Tinian on 26 July."
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Old 19-08-2017, 20:44   #14
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Re: USS Indianapolis Has Been Found, Finally

The Sinking:

"At 00:14 on 30 July, she was struck on her starboard side by two Type 95 torpedoes, one in the bow and one amidships, from the Japanese submarine I-58, under the command of Mochitsura Hashimoto, who initially thought he had spotted an "Idaho-class battleship".[15] The explosions caused massive damage. Indianapolis took on a heavy list, and settled by the bow. Twelve minutes later, she rolled completely over, then her stern rose into the air, and she plunged down. Some 300 of the 1,196 crewmen went down with the ship. With few lifeboats and many without lifejackets, the remainder of the crew were set adrift.[16]"

-----------

There were noteworthy acts of heroism and valor.

There was the story of the Navy Chaplain who aided and comforted many men in the water, but was lost.

I was particularly struck by the actions of a PBY "Flying Boat" crew, who landed and rescued 56 sailors. They were later called "Guardian Angels" by those they rescued.
---------

"Navy command had no knowledge of the ship's sinking until survivors were spotted three and a half days later. At 10:25 on 2 August, a PV-1 Ventura from VPB-152 flown by Lieutenant Wilbur "Chuck" Gwinn and copilot Lieutenant Warren Colwell spotted the men adrift while on a routine patrol flight.[17] Gwinn immediately dropped a life raft and a radio transmitter. All air and surface units capable of rescue operations were dispatched to the scene at once.

A PBY Catalina flying boat under the command of Lieutenant R. Adrian Marks was dispatched to lend assistance and report.[17] En route to the scene, Marks overflew USS Cecil J. Doyle and alerted her captain, future U.S. Secretary of the Navy W. Graham Claytor, Jr., of the emergency. On his own authority, Claytor decided to divert to the scene.

Arriving hours ahead of Cecil J. Doyle, Marks' crew began dropping rubber rafts and supplies. Having seen men being attacked by sharks, Marks disobeyed standing orders and landed on the open sea.[18] He began taxiing to pick up the stragglers and lone swimmers who were at the greatest risk of shark attack.[17] Learning the men were the crew of Indianapolis, he radioed the news, requesting immediate assistance. Doyle responded while en route. When Marks' plane was full, survivors were tied to the wings with parachute cord, damaging the wings so that the plane would never fly again and had to be sunk.[17] Marks and his crew rescued 56 men that day, more than one-sixth of the 317 survivors.[17]

Cecil J. Doyle was the first vessel on the scene.[17] Homing in on Marks's Catalina in total darkness, Doyle halted to avoid killing or further injuring survivors, and began taking Marks' survivors aboard. Disregarding the safety of his own vessel, Captain Claytor pointed his largest searchlight into the night sky to serve as a beacon for other rescue vessels.[17] This beacon was the first indication to most survivors that rescuers had arrived.[17]

The destroyers Helm, Madison, and Ralph Talbot were ordered to the rescue scene from Ulithi, along with destroyer escorts Dufilho, Bassett, and Ringness of the Philippine Sea Frontier. They continued their search for survivors until 8 August.

Of the 880 who had survived the sinking, only 321 men came out of the water alive; 317 ultimately survived.[19] They suffered from lack of food and water (leading to dehydration and hypernatremia; some found rations, such as Spam and crackers, amongst the debris), exposure to the elements (leading to hypothermia and severe desquamation), and shark attacks, while some killed themselves or other survivors in various states of delirium and hallucinations.[20][21]
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Old 19-08-2017, 20:54   #15
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Re: USS Indianapolis Has Been Found, Finally

The story of the Indianapolis has been used in movies.

Here are a few clips mentioning this.

"References to the Indianapolis sinking and aftermath have been adapted to film, stage, television, and popular culture. The incident itself was the subject of 1991 made-for-television movie Mission of the Shark: The Saga of the USS Indianapolis, with Stacy Keach portraying Captain Charles Butler McVay III.

Arguably the most well known fictional reference to the events occurs in the 1975 thriller film Jaws in a monologue by actor Robert Shaw, whose character Quint is depicted as a survivor of the Indianapolis sinking. The monologue emphasizes the numerous deaths caused by shark attacks after the sinking. John Milius was specifically brought into the production to write lines for this scene and he based them on survivor stories. However, there are several historical inaccuracies in the monologue: the speech states the date of the sinking as 29 June 1945, when the ship was actually sunk on 30 July, that 1,100 men went into the water and 316 came out (nearer 900 went in and 321 came out, of whom 317 survived) and that because of the secrecy of the atom bomb mission no distress call was broadcast, while declassified Navy documents prove the contrary.[42]

A few years after the release of Jaws, co-writer Howard Sackler proposed making a prequel film based on the sinking of Indianapolis. The idea was ultimately rejected by then-Universal Studios president Sidney Sheinberg; the film instead would eventually go on to become the sequel Jaws 2.[43]

Science fiction writer Jack Chalker's historical novel The Devil's Voyage (1980) centers on the sinking of Indianapolis.

Sara Vladic directed USS Indianapolis: The Legacy, which tells the fate of USS Indianapolis using exclusively first-person accounts from the survivors of the sinking. This film was released in December 2015.[citation needed]

USS Indianapolis: Men of Courage, starring Nicolas Cage, was released in October 2016, with Mario Van Peebles directing.[44][45]"

----------------

Coincidentally, I watched the last film, the one with Nicholas Cage as Captain McVay, a few days ago, before the discovery of the wreck. While I am familiar with the story, and have viewed other, previous films with great interest, I did not like the Mario Peeples directed Cage film. It was very disappointing, though that may be partially my distaste for Cage in dramatic roles of any kind. I think Stacy Keech did a better job in a previous film.

I think it is best to hear the stories from the survivors. see the above mentioned:
USS Indianapolis: The Legacy, which tells the fate of USS Indianapolis using exclusively first-person accounts from the survivors of the sinking.
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