Claffy, Charles Porter, F2c

Fallen
 
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Last Rank
Fireman 2nd Class
Last Rating/NEC Group
Fireman Second Class
Primary Unit
1941-1941, F2c-0000, USS Canopus (AS-9)
Service Years
1940 - 1941
Fireman 2nd Class

 Last Photo   Personal Details 


Home State
Minnesota
Minnesota
Year of Birth
1921
 
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Tommy Burgdorf (Birddog), FC2 to remember Claffy, Charles Porter, F2c.

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Casualty Info
Home Town
Two Harbors, MN
Last Address
329 2d Ave
Two Harbors, MN

Casualty Date
Dec 29, 1941
 
Cause
Hostile, Died
Reason
Other Explosive Device
Location
Philippines
Conflict
World War II
Location of Interment
Manila American Cemetery - Taguig City, Philippines
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Tablets of the Missing (Cenotaph)

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 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

Killed in action during enemy air attack on USS Canopus. His body was interred in Mariveless Bay. P.I.

On 7 December 1941, Canopus, aging but able, lay at Cavite Navy Yard, as tender to Submarine Squadron 20. In the days that followed, her men worked day and night to repair ships damaged in the daily air raids as well as to keep her brood of submarines at sea. With the Army falling back on Manila, Canopus sailed to Mariveles Bay at the tip of Bataan on Christmas Day. On 29 December 1941 she received her first direct bomb hit. A 500-pound armor-piercing bomb penetrated all decks and exploded on the propeller shaft housing. Six sailors were killed mostly from scalding and fires started in the engine rooms and magazines. The six men were buried at sea at 1735 hours in Mariveles Bay at the tip of Bataan. On 1 January 1942 she received a second direct bomb hit. This time a fragmentation bomb which exploded near the top of the towering smokestack resulting in substantial damage to the ship and injuries to 16 men of the gun crews.

Disguised as a bombed out, listing, abandoned hulk, smoke pots were placed around the ship and giving the appearance of an abandoned hulk by day, while the ship hummed with activity by night. Her crew worked at a fevered pace repairing the smaller ships also left behind and keeping the submarines in action.

Just before the New Year, the last of the submarines left Canopus, but she never quit as she cared for small craft and equipment of the Army and Navy, sent her men into battle in the improvised naval battalion which fought on Bataan, and converted her own launches into miniature gunboats dubbed Mickey Mouse Battleships which attacked the Japanese moving south near the shore. But the overwhelming Japanese strength could not be held off forever, and upon the surrender of Bataan on the night of 8–9 April 1942, Canopus was ordered scuttled in Mariveles Bay, Bataan, to deny her use to the enemy. On 9 April, she was backed off into deep water under her own power and the veteran whom the Japanese could not sink ended a lifetime of service to the Navy when she was laid to rest by her own men.

221 of her crewmen were evacuated to Corregidor on 28 February 1942 and served with the Marines 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Battalions on beach defenses. The final 327 crewmen were also evacuated to Corregidor and served in the 4th Marine Regiment's 4th Battalion Reserves (Provisional) which fought gallantly during the final battle for the island fortress. Nearly all Canopus crewmen were captured at the fall of Corregidor and spent the rest of the war in Japanese POW Camps in the Philippines and the Asian mainland. Some of the captured crew did not survive, but were killed on 14 December 1944 in the Palawan massacre.

212 were killed/missing in Action.

   
Comments/Citation
Not Specified
   

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 Enlisted/Officer Basic Training
  1941, Recruit Training (Great Lakes, IL)
 Duty Stations
USS Canopus (AS-9)
  1941-1941, F2c-0000, USS Canopus (AS-9)
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1941-1941 Philippine Islands Campaign (1941-42)/USS Canopus (AS-9)
 Other News, Events and Photographs
 
  Oct 29, 1940, Service entry date and Serial Number
  Apr 22, 1941, Received at US Naval Air Station, Terminal Island, CA from NTS Great Lakes
  May 09, 1941, Transferred to USS Sabine For Transport to USS Argonne
  May 09, 1941, Received on USS Sabine for transport to USS Argonne for duty
  May 18, 1941, Transferred to USS Argonne for Duty
  Jun 01, 1941, Changed from AS (E-1) to F3c (E-2) Sometime before Aug 1941
  Aug 12, 1941, Transferred to USS Rigel for Transport to Asiatic Station for duty
  Aug 21, 1941, Received on USS Henderson forTransport Asiatic Station for Duty
  Sep 13, 1941, Transferred to USS Canopus For Duty by COMSUBRON 20
  Apr 27, 2016, General Photos1
 Military Association Memberships
World War II FallenUnited States Navy Memorial The National Gold Star Family RegistryWW II Memorial National Registry
  2016, World War II Fallen
  2016, United States Navy Memorial - Assoc. Page
  2016, The National Gold Star Family Registry
  2016, WW II Memorial National Registry
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