A few years back before my mom passed away.... we all went
to New York to see my daughter perform at Carnegie Hall. We also had somewhere else to visit that was long over do.
We took my mom to Battery Park to see the memorial for the soilders that drowned and who were never recovered in the waters of the Atlantic Ocean during WWII.
Two days out of Norfolk, along the Florida coast, a navy destroyer named the USS Warrington received word that she was steaming directly into a hurricane. Later that evening, the storm forced the destroyer to heave. Keeping wind and sea on her port bow, Warrington rode relatively well through most of the night. Wind and seas, however, continued to build during the early morning hours of September 13th 1944. Warrington began to lose headway and, as a result, started to ship water through the vents to her engineering spaces.
The water rushing into her vents caused a loss of electrical power which set off a chain reaction. Her main engines lost power, and her steering engine and mechanism went out. She wallowed there in the trough of the swells, continuing to ship water. She regained headway briefly and turned upwind, while her radiomen desperately, but fruitlessly, tried to contact another nearby vessel. Finally, she resorted to a plain-language distress call to any ship or shore station. By noon on the 13th, it was apparent that Warrington's crewmen could not win the struggle to save their ship, and the order went out to prepare to abandon ship. By 12:50, her crew had left Warrington; and she went down almost immediately. A prolonged search by 10 other vessels rescued only five officers and 68 men of the destroyer's 20 officers and 301 men.
My mother's brother...Chief Storekeeper USNR Edward John Labuda was one of the men lost at sea. He had just been home on leave prior to returning to duty.
The memorial says....
My mother looking at her brother's name engraved in stone for the first time.
La Buda Edward J.
His name on the wall faces the Statue of Liberty and
.....Ellis Island. The same port where his father entered the United States as an immigrant years before.
Thank you to all of those that made the ultimate sacrifice. You're forever in our debt and hearts. Indeed...in to thy hands, O Lord.