Our father, Homer Moore quit his job at Wonderbread Bakery and joined the United States Navy a few weeks after the attack on Pearl Harbor in December 1941.  He was sent to a short training camp with the Seabees and then received orders to serve on the USS Maryland battleship that would be heading to the Pacific Theater of Operations.  Dad was on board the ship during every major Pacific World War II battle (1942-1945) except when the Maryland returned to the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard in Bremerton, Washington for repairs after multiple torpedo and  kamikaze strikes.  Dad earned a silver star and four bronze stars for his service as a gunners mate in the war.  [JAM 3/1/2021]


"... Japanese Kamikaze screamed downwards out of the clouds in its vertical descent, this time to make his kill!  Our anti-aircraft batteries pounded lead into the sky as fast as guns could be loaded.  The intensity of firing guns increased, spewing streaming tracers towards the rapidly decending [sic] target.  The kamikaze roared closer!  It headed straight for our position!  It was going to hit!  I ran into the magazine with my mate, slamming the steel door behind me!  The deadly Kamikaze was only moments away from impact!  Our gun crew's fingers froze to their triggers, hoping to blast it out of the sky before impact!  Suddenly the left wing ripped away, as it veered sharply left, crashing with great impact in a ball of flame a few feet away between 16 inch gun turrets one and two.  It's armor piercing bomb crashed through two decks, and exploded five feet from my locker, penetrating the four inch steel armored deck.  All those who were trapped in the 'F' Division compartment as I had been moments before, were blown into oblivian [sic]!  Not one survived!"

USS Maryland