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dmckay

Down with your ship!

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How many captains willingly went "down with their ships" in WWI and WWII?  Trivia.  I don't know cept for Prince of Wales. 

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Graf Spee.

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The captains of the Bismarck and Prince of Wales went down with the ships. Also IJN commanders were expected to go down with theirs, so it shouldn't be too surprising that the captains of the Musashi and Yamato did so as well. You could also count most submarine commanders...

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1 minute ago, KingCakeBaby said:

The captains of the Bismarck, Prince of Wales,  went down with the ship. Also IJN commanders were expected to go down with theirs, so it shouldn't be too surprising that the captains of the Musashi and Yamato joined theirs. You could also count most submarine commanders...

Tks but I not sure captain of Bismarck had much choice. Maybe you know more. Tks. Some got off her of course. Neither did MOST sub commanders have much of a choice. Generally. Seems to me.

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3 minutes ago, KingCakeBaby said:

The captains of the Bismarck and Prince of Wales went down with the ships. Also IJN commanders were expected to go down with theirs, so it shouldn't be too surprising that the captains of the Musashi and Yamato did so as well. You could also count most submarine commanders...

He did say willingly.

I kinda doubt that sub captains went willingly. They usually had no choice in the matter, unless they managed to surface their boat.

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Just now, KingCakeBaby said:

That would be the point of the less than amazing joke.

So hard to detect levity in a forum post...

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3 minutes ago, dmckay said:

Tks but I not sure captain of Bismarck had much choice. Maybe you know more. Tks. Some got off her of course. Neither did MOST sub commanders have much of a choice. Generally. Seems to me.

Lindemann supposedly went down clutching the forward flagmast with one arm and giving a vigorous salute with the other according to eye witnesses. How factual that is though is open to debate. 

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6 minutes ago, Doombeagle said:

Langsdorff shot himself.

Yep, you're right. I was sure he went down with the ship. He lay down over the Graf Spee's battle ensign and shot himself after scuttling his ship(according to wikipedia).

Edited by _Rumple_

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8 minutes ago, KingCakeBaby said:

Lindemann supposedly went down clutching the forward flagmast with one arm and giving a vigorous salute with the other according to eye witnesses. How factual that is though is open to debate. 

 

Just now, _Rumple_ said:

Yep, you're right. I was sure he went down with the ship. He lay down over the Graf Spee's battle ensign and shot himself after scuttling his ship.

Ya. Correct.  He could have taken her back into battle but, as I understand it, he thought the Brits had brought up reinforcements. Kinda got fooled. That's all I know.

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11 minutes ago, KingCakeBaby said:

Lindemann supposedly went down clutching the forward flagmast with one arm and giving a vigorous salute with the other according to eye witnesses. How factual that is though is open to debate. 

Very open to debate.  I agree. BUT he did go down with his ship whatever the circumstances. May have been dead. 

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Hmmm, Lucitania?

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17 minutes ago, _Rumple_ said:

He did say willingly.

I kinda doubt that sub captains went willingly. They usually had no choice in the matter, unless they managed to surface their boat.

Key word indeed was willingly. As you say sub commanders had little choice.

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Hiryu and Soryu aircraft carrier commanders.

The merchant cruiser captain who tangled with Scharnhorst and Gneisenau.

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1 hour ago, dmckay said:

Key word indeed was willingly. As you say sub commanders had little choice.

Lol actually sub commanders went down with their ships, then came back up, then went down and back up again. Kind of the idea of using a sub... :Smile_teethhappy:

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9 minutes ago, Admiral_Thrawn_1 said:

Lol actually sub commanders went down with their ships, then came back up, then went down and back up again. Kind of the idea of using a sub... :Smile_teethhappy:

I was once asked by a surface sailor, "how can you go to sea in a ship that's designed to sink?". My reply, "how can you go to sea in a ship that's not designed to come back up after it sinks."

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The HMS Rawalpindi (she was a cruiser I think?) was sunk in 1930/1940 sometime by the Scharnhorst. I think her Captain went down with her. And the Bismarck too, I think. The Captain clung to the flagpost as he went under, or so the story goes

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On 5/7/2018 at 10:05 PM, dmckay said:

How many captains willingly went "down with their ships" in WWI and WWII?  Trivia.  I don't know cept for Prince of Wales. 

I am not sure, myself I know they (USN) are supposed to be the last man off.

I know Ernest E. Evans fate has been debated -  "The fate of the Johnston's captain was never conclusively established, and remains the subject of continuing conjecture among the ship's survivors. Some claim that he was hit by Japanese naval shellfire; others that he was able to jump into a damaged motor whaleboat. What is known is that he was seriously wounded during the battle; that he lived long enough to give the abandon ship order; and that he was not among those rescued. Evans was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for his material contribution to the decisive victory won in Leyte Gulf and shared in the Presidential Unit Citation awarded his group for this action in which he gave his life."

There is one story from the USS Samuel B. Roberts (DE-413) about an Petty Officer that always touched my heart - "Gunner's Mate Third Class Paul H. Carr was in charge of the aft 5 in (127.0 mm) gun mount, which had fired nearly all of its 325 stored rounds in 35 minutes before a breech explosion. Carr was found dying at his station from a severe intestinal wound, begging for help to load the last round he was holding into the breech. He had scored a great many hits on the heavy cruiser Chokai, also sunk that day. He was posthumously awarded a Silver Star, and a guided missile frigate was later named for him."

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