Tragic Court Martial of USS Indianapolis Captain


"Capt. Quint" was on the USS Indianapolis; In this scene from Jaws he concludes his story with "anyway, we delivered the bomb."

USSIndianapolisOn This Date in History: On July 29,  1945, the USS Indianapolis was sunk by a Japanese submarine. The cruiser was returning from Tinian Island where it had secretly delivered the atomic bomb. Because it was a secret mission, details of its schedule were shrouded. So much so that its late arrival went unnoticed. The Americans had intercepted a message from the sub describing the ship they had sunk. The Americans just assumed it was a boast and didn’t follow up. If you remember Jaws then you know the story as told by Captain Quint, who said he was a crew member of the doomed ship. Nearly 1200 men were on the ship.

Captain McVay

Captain McVay

About 400 died from the torpedo blast. Some 900 men went into the water but only 318 were rescued. No one showed up for a rescue for 84 hours in during that time nearly 500 men were devoured by sharks. Quint said he’d never wear a life jacket again. The Captain of the Indianapolis, Charles B McVay III, never sailed again and on this date in 1945  he became the only officer in US naval history to be court-martialed for losing a ship in war time. McVay committed suicide in 1968 and many speculate he took his own life due to guilt.   His father had been a Rear Admiral in the US Navy and that most likely just added to his grief.  But, during the Clinton Administration, Captain McVay was exonerated from fault by Congress in October 2000.   In spite of the Congressional official exoneration, the US Navy records still indicate the Captain Charles McVay was found guilty in a Court-Martial for losing the USS Indianapolis while he was in command.

Here is a link to a message board regarding Captain Charles B. McVay.

Weather Bottom Line:  It’s going to stay chilly over the weekend.  Our average high this time of year is around 49 and Saturday and Sunday we will have highs somewhere in the neighborhood of 10 degrees below that.  On Monday, another system drops down that may bring a rain snow mix or some insignificant snow.  What I am more interested in resides later in the week.  By Wednesday or Thursday, another system drops down and moves through.  The GFS was advertising about a half inch of snow.  It’s interesting because the GFS is the model that got the snow right today for Houston.  The NAM was claiming it would be dry.  The TV stations haven’t caught on to this feature yet as they too say rain…but I think that it holds some promise…but its 5 days away so we’ll see how it unfolds.  Needless to say…we ain’t warmin’ up any time soon.  We’ve shifted out of that November pattern that brought us one of the few warmer than average months in 2009.

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