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J. Richard Briggs, M.D. - 1960 - East Coast , U.S. Navy The first nuclear-powered submarine, Nautilus SSN 571, had just returned from her shakedown cruise in 1956 and the boat was found to be uninhabitable. The equipment that controlled the atmosphere within the boat was faulty and although much research had been done on it, much more remained to be discovered. Submarine Medicine was a new technical specialty and there were a lot of unanswered questions. Although we knew how to set a broken arm or pull a tooth or even remove an appendix, how does a physician really practice medicine 300 feet under the surface of the ocean in an upholstered steel tube? Admiral Hyman G. Rickover, USN (Director of Naval Reactors and de facto officer in charge of building nuclear powered submarines) had insisted that “nuclear-trained doctors be assigned to each new ship because he knew that the unprecedented long submergence tours might lead to situations as yet unforeseen. “ In 1960, ten young and eager Navy doctors were chosen for Admiral Rickover’s nuclear program and put through a study and training curriculum specially designed for them. Eight physicians suvived the year of preparation and reported for duty on the newest Polaris Missile Submarines. We were two of them.
Joseph C. Cline - 1917 - Europe , United States Naval Reserve Forces The life of a U.S. Naval Aviation Pilot serving in France in World War I is vividly recounted in this recollection by Joseph C. Cline. It is from a never-before-published series of interviews with early naval aviators conducted by the U.S. Naval Institute in the 1960s and 1970s, capturing these irreplaceable memories while these men were still alive. Cline spoke with U.S. Naval Institute interviewer Commander Etta-Belle Kitchen, USN (Ret.), in Coronado, California, on 14 September 1969.
Minoru Genda - 7 December 1941 - Pacific , Imperial Japanese Navy On 3 March 1969, the U.S. Naval Institute made history (and generated no small degree of controversy) when it hosted a talk by retired Japanese General Minoru Genda, a “mastermind of the Pearl Harbor attack,” at the U.S. Naval Academy. Genda spoke to a packed house that included more than 750 midshipmen as well as active-duty and retired officers and numerous members of the Naval Institute. The former foe’s presence had generated a firestorm of criticism, from letters in local newspapers to impassioned oratory in the halls of Congress. What many who were outraged didn’t realize or acknowledge was that Genda had become a highly respected friend of America by then and had even been awarded the U.S. Legion of Merit by the Joint Chiefs of Staff in 1962. In this historic talk, Genda served up personal reminiscences about his naval career and his role in Japanese strategic planning in the buildup to World War II and the attack on Pearl Harbor. (He also displayed a penchant for Sun-Tzu.) In the question-and-answer period following the talk, his candid comments about the atomic bomb would end up landing him in political hot water back home in Japan.
Charles Thomas Hibbett - 1875-1913 - North Atlantic, Mediterranean, South America, Philippines , Medical Corps This is the never-before-seen memoir of the U.S. Navy surgeon Charles Thomas Hibbett (1851-1930), who served from 1875 to 1913. Though this was ostensibly written for his daughter Alice, about age 23 at the time, Dr. Hibbett occasionally addresses "the reader." His first wife, Florence Wilson of Petersburg, died in September of 1892 when Alice was less than one year old. No mention is made of Alice's care or living situation during Hibbett's extended absences. He did not remarry for several years; his second wife, Gladys McDow (1883-1974), of Nashville was some 30 years his junior. The document was only recently discovered, and has been contributed to the U.S. Naval Institute Memoir Collection by the the descendants of Dr. Hibbett. More details on him follow: Charles Thomas Hibbett was born in Castalian Springs, Tennessee, on 23 November 1851. He attended the University of Virginia and Jefferson Medical College, obtaining an M.D. degree. He served in the US Navy as a surgeon from 1875 until 1913. He died 30 March 1930. He was married in 1886 to Florence Wilson of Petersburg (1866-1892). Their daughter and only child Alice Coke was born 3 November 1891 in Norfolk. Alice married Henry Edwards Mecredy of Roanoke on 29 September 1914 at Farmville, Virginia. Her only child, Henry Edwards Mecredy Jr., was born 2 June 1916 (died 8 September 2006). Alice died on 14 April 1919 in the postwar influenza pandemic.
Steve F. Kime - 20th century - Captain, U.S. Navy This memoir is an intellectual journey. It is based in the fundamental middle-American values and opinions, good and bad, of the "happy Days" of the Fifties. These values and opinions are dragged kicking and screaming through a rich and varied set of experiences as a young man is, amazingly, nurtured and tolerated by a usually hidebound Navy. The journey ends with summaries about Russia, US Military Policy and Strategy and the prospects for social and political turmoil in America. Steve F. Kime, a retired Navy Captain, is not a cookie-cutter product of a military academy. His unusual career led him from his roots in Indiana to submarine duty, a doctorate at Harvard, service in Russia during treaty negotiations and the shootdown of an airliner, and responsibilities in strategy, intelligence and higher education. His was a politico-military coming of age. He pulls no punches in relating his mid-America upbringing and the experiences of his unusual career to current social, political and military issues.
Raymond Cornelius Malley - - Pacific Theater Chief Petty Officer, U.S. Navy. On a warm, muggy and rainy day in July 2012, the Malley Family had a reunion at the Montgomery, New York, Firehouse with about 55 family and friends in attendance. It seems the younger generation of Malleys has an interest in the family trees associated with the Malley family, with some bringing information from many sources. One of the treasures that came to light was a box of letters written by Ray Malley and his brother Art Malley during their times in the Navy and Army. The letters from Ray Malley started in July 1930 from the USS Chaumont to March 1943 from the USS Trever. The collection was discovered in a closet in the Malley farmhouse, and while it is most likely not a complete compilation of his letters they paint a vivid picture of his life in the U.S. Navy with some insights to the impact of the Great Depression on the Malley farm. Perhaps the most important letter is the one he wrote on 13 December 1941, telling his mother he survived the attack on Pearl Harbor and probably wouldn’t make it home for Christmas. A chronological arrangement of Ray Malley’s letters, most of which were retyped for clarity (no attempt was made to correct spelling errors and when the writing was not legible either x’s or question marks were inserted), from the time of his enlistment to 1943 are included here. Numerous photos also were in the box (but most had no captions), and some have been inserted in the most logical places with the letters.
John J. McDonough - 1967-1975 - West Coast Lieutenant Commander, U.S. Navy Reserve
Knefler McGinnis - 1941 - Pacific Captain, U.S. Navy An eventful career spanning the early years of naval aviation comes to life in this reminiscence by Captain Knefler McGinnis. In January 1934, as a lieutenant commander, he led six Consolidated P2Y-1s on a nonstop flight from San Francisco to Pearl Harbor in a time of 24 hours, 35 minutes, thereby exceeding the distance record for mass flights and bettering the best previous time for the crossing. Other highlights of his story include having a certain Marc A. Mitscher as a co-pilot, and vivid memories of the events of 7 December 1941. McGinnis’ account is from a never-before-published series of interviews with early naval aviators conducted by the U.S. Naval Institute in the 1960s and 1970s, capturing these irreplaceable memories while these men were still alive. McGinnis spoke with U.S. Naval Institute interviewer Commander Etta-Belle Kitchen, USN (Ret.), in Pensacola, Florida, on 23 January 1971.
Donald C. McKinlay - 1945 - Pacific Theater Ensign, Pacific Fleet Donald McKinlay was sworn in as an ensign in the U.S. Navy in the wake of Pearl Harbor. The "Preamble" to his memoir covers his early naval experiences in the first year of U.S. involvement in World War II, then proceeds to "Invasion of Iwo Jima," his daily log of the climactic months of the Pacific War from February to July 1945, at which time he was gunnery officer on board the Buckley-class destroyer escort USS Barr (DE-576).
Samuel Eliot Morison - World War II years - Pacific Theater Rear Admiral, U.S. Navy Reserve Samuel Eliot Morison, the dean of American maritime and naval history, is most renowned and revered for his epic 15-volume magnum opus “History of United States Naval Operations in World War II.” He wrote several other massively popular and influential books as well during his long and distinguished career. Granted a remarkable degree of access among the U.S. Fleet during World War II, Morison was an eyewitness to the greatest naval conflict ever fought. This interview from the U.S. Naval Institute archives was conducted by James T. Westwood at Morison’s beloved home at Desert Island, Maine, on 27 October 1973. The 86-year-old Morison’s reminiscences here about his naval experiences feature insights about the great U.S. Navy admirals who steered the course of the Pacific War. Morison also displays an impressive grasp of the world situation at the time of the interview, offering his views on everything from the American experience in Vietnam to the rising power of the Soviet Navy.


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