Orval E. Aylesworth
USS West Virginia
Orval E. Aylesworth, CMM, born May 11, 1919, Kalispel, MT, and enlisted in the USN Sept. 13, 1939. As an apprentice seaman, on Dec. 7, 1941, he was standing on a ladder in the evaporator room as the first bomb hit the steaming fireroom. By the time he got to the machine shop, the ship was listing to port and the bunker fuel was rushing in. While someone was closing the port hatch, he undogged the starboard hatch. As he stuck his head over the hatch coaming, another torpedo came through the barber shop. That was the last memory he had. He woke up on the hospital ship on Monday.
Reprinted with permission from Turner Publishing
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