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Home Town Sophia, WVA
Last Address Sophia, WVA
Casualty Date Jun 06, 1944
Cause Hostile-Body Not Recovered
Reason Artillery, Rocket, Mortar
Location Atlantic Ocean
Conflict World War II
Location of Interment Not Specified
Wall/Plot Coordinates Not Specified
Last Known Activity
Upon arriving off the coast of Normandy, France, USS Corry (DD-463) headed for Iles Saint-Marcouf, her station for fire support on the front lines at UtahBeach. On D-Day morning 6 June 1944 she fired several hundred rounds of 5-inch ammunition at numerous onshore targets. As H-Hour (0630) neared, when troops would begin fighting their way onto the beaches, the plane assigned to lay smoke for Corry to conceal her from enemy fire was suddenly shot down, leaving Corry fully exposed to German gunners, who were now firing at her in full fury. At approximately H-Hour, during a duel with a shore battery, Corry suffered direct heavy-caliber artillery hits in her engineering spaces amidships. With her rudder jammed, she went around in a circle before all steam was lost. Still under heavy fire, Corry began sinking rapidly with her keel broken and a foot-wide crack across her main deck amidships. After the order to abandon ship, crewmembers fought to survive in bone-chilling water for more than two hours as they awaited rescue under constant enemy fire from German shore gunners. Of her crew, 24 were killed and 60 were wounded.
S2c Gearhart was listed as missing in action and later declared dead.