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Men of Poseidon : Life at Sea Aboard the USS Rall Paperback – October 1, 2000

5.0 out of 5 stars 3 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

I wanted to publish this book because of its honesty. It is the first Destroyer Escort story I've read that emphasized the real day-to-day events of ship's life, not just the battles. Besides that, Dick is an excellent writer.

What's also impressive is that Dick is a natural storyteller with an excellent memory. He has filled the book with many anecdotes, such as the touching story of an underage recruit, and Dick's own unsuspecting participation in a "torpedo juice" drinking party. He has included a lot of funny tales and wry observations.

Dick is also a stickler for accuracy, and has spent countless hours with the original ship's log, the battle damage report, and correspondence with living crew members to get the facts straight.

Another thing I like is that this story starts before the war, when many young men were ambivalent about what America's involvement should be. It concludes after the war, as we learn which crew members went where after the USS Rall was decommissioned.

In short, this is an excellent book. I'm very glad I published it.

From the Author

I started this book to satisfy a request from my shipmates, who wanted an important story to be told. As the draft developed, I also realized that two generations have grown up without a clear understanding of what happened in the Pacific during World War II.

Imagine a bunch of 17 or 18 year old kids, and a handful of "90 day wonders" like me out there fighting a war. I was an "old man" of 24 when I stood Officer of the Deck (OOD) watches on the USS Rall.

It's a gut-wrenching experience to take full responsibility for a ship and its 210 lives for a watch. When we were escorting a division of troops, 20,000 lives and all their supplies could be imperiled by my decisions and the crew's actions.

But that's why this book is called "Men of Poseidon." Poseidon was the Greek god of the sea, and this story is about young men who, in the beginning, did not know the sea but developed into seamen worthy of Poseidon's approval. You can also take it as the story of any one of tens of thousands of young sailors of that time.

We had all been to Naval schools and for the most part had learned our jobs well. We were young, self-assured, and maybe a bit cocky. No one was especially brave, yet we were confident and ready. After the war, when we came home, we were heroes and damned proud of our accomplishments.

After the battle of Okinawa. the USS Rall was awarded a Navy Unit Commendation. It starts, "For outstanding heroism in action..." This book is dedicated to the memory of those who lost their lives while fighting, especially our crewmates killed on the USS Rall in the battle of Okinawa.

Product details

  • Item Weight : 14.4 ounces
  • Paperback : 220 pages
  • ISBN-10 : 0615114156
  • ISBN-13 : 978-0615114156
  • Product Dimensions : 7.75 x 0.5 x 9 inches
  • Publisher : Willow Valley Pr (October 1, 2000)
  • Language: : English
  • Customer Reviews:
    5.0 out of 5 stars 3 ratings

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