Posted by: SJS | August 6, 2018

Rough and ready

Classic PT pose

In this undated photo from the vast archives of PT Boats, Inc., four unidentified PT sailors stand on the deck of a boat somewhere in the South Pacific.  In my ongoing research, photos like this are the rule rather than the exception.  The expressions on their young faces exemplify the brash, confident spirit that is so characteristic of the sailors who manned those small, speedy boats and earned such a distinguished place in the history of the US Navy in WWII.

It was enlisted men such as these who, like Red Stahley, always stood ready for whatever assignment came their way.  And it was enlisted men like these who served under skippers like John F. Kennedy and demonstrated the courage, resilience, and strength to endure and survive the destruction and shipwreck of PT 109 which occurred around this time in 1943–75 years ago.

With their youthful enthusiasm and informal approach to Navy traditions, the members of the Navy’s Mosquito Fleet expanded the imagination of the US Armed Forces and served as models for many of the innovative military units that would follow in their wake like the Navy SEALS and other specialized divisions.





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