Joseph Edward Durik, born 9 December 1922 in southwest Pa., enlisted in the Naval Reserve 5 January 1942. Apprentice Seaman Durik was killed in action 15 March 1942 following the accidental firing of a torpedo aboard Meredith (DD-434). For his selfless conduct in giving first aid to an injured shipmate although wounded himself, Apprentice Seaman Durik was posthumously commended by Admiral C. W. Nimitz.
(DE-666: dp. 1,400; l. 306'; b. 36'10"; dr. 9'5"; s. 24 k.; cpl. 186; a. 3 3", 3 21" tt, 8 dcp, 1 dcp.(hh.), 2 dct.; cl. Buckley)
Durik (DE-666) was launched 9 October 1943 by Dravo Corp., Neville Island, Pa.; sponsored by Mrs. M. Durik, mother of Seaman Apprentice Durik; and commissioned 24 March 1944, Commander K. B. Smith in command.
Between 20 May and 30 November 1944 Durik made two voyages from New York and Norfolk escorting convoys to Casablanca, Bizerte, and Palermo. She served as schoolship for precommissioning crews of escort vessels, frigates, and high-speed transports at Norfolk from 9 December 1944 to 14 January 1945, then returned to convoy duty, making two voyages to Oran, Algeria, between 17 January 1945 and 19 May.
Durik arrived at Miami, Fla., 8 June 1945 to serve as schoolship for the instruction of student officers. From 21 July to 5 September she was briefly overhauled at New York and trained at Guantanamo Bay, then returned to duty at Miami until 1 November when she arrived at Mayport, Fla., to serve as plane guard for Solomons (CVE-67) during the qualifications of pilots in carrier operations. On 28 March 1946 Durik entered Charleston Naval Ship Yard, and on 27 April arrived at Green Cove Springs, Fla., where she was placed out of commission in reserve 15 June 1946.