John W. Freebery
USS West Virginia
On Dec. 7 John was getting ready to go ashore for church services when the alarm
sounded for fire and rescue. Since he was a signal striker his station was on
the flag bridge. He witnessed the entire battle and sinking of the ship. Unable
to abandon ship because of the oil burning on top on the water he was stuck over
night on the flag bridge. Rescued the next day he was grabbed by a departing
destroyer ,the USS Dunlop for a raid on the Gilbert and Marshall islands. Assuming that he was killed on the West Virginia the Navy notified
John's wife that he was missing and presumed dead.
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