Donald Roy McAnn, born 23 June 1911 in Rochester, N.Y., enlisted in the U.S. Navy 16 August 1932. During the early months of World War II he served on Enterprise (CV‑6) as a gunnerís mate first class. On 26 October 1942 U.S. carrier task forces fought a numerically superior Japanese force in the Battle of Santa Cruz Islands. While suffering considerable damage, the Americans successfully checked the advancement of the powerful enemy force toward Guadalcanal. During the fierce air battle McAnn took valuable photographs from an exposed position on the forward port .50 caliber gun mount. In addition he rendered vital assistance to the guncrew and displayed outstanding courage without regard for his own safety. While relieving one of the gunners, he was struck by an exploding bomb fragment and fatally wounded. Donald Roy McAnn was buried at sea. For his unstinting bravery in the face of hostile action, McAnn was awarded the Navy Cross posthumously.
DE‑73 was laid down as McAnn by Bethlehem‑Hingham Shipyard, Hingham, Mass., 19 April 1943; assigned to Great Britain tinder lend‑lease; and, upon completion 7 October 1943, commissioned as HMS Balfour (K‑464). She served the Royal Navy during the remainder of World War II and was returned to the custody of the U.S. Navy 25 October 1945. She was sold 28 October 1946.
(DE‑179: dp. 1,240; l. 306'; b. 36'8"; dr. 8'9"; s. 21 k.; cpl. 216; a. 3 3", 2 40mm., 8 20mm., 3 21" tt., 2 dct., 8 dcp., 1 dcp. (h.h.); cl. Cannon)
McAnn (DE‑179) was laid down by Federal Shipbuilding Co., Newark, N.J., 17 May 1943; launched 5 September 1943; sponsored by Mrs. Ethel Marie McAnn; and commissioned at New York 11 October 1943, Comdr. Charles F. Hooper in command.
After shakedown off Bermuda, McAnn operated along the east coast from Newport, R.I., to Charleston, S.C., until 19 December 1943 when she departed Norfolk, Va., on a convoy escort run to the Canal Zone. She reached Coco Solo 26 December, thence sailed the 31st for duty out of Key West. Arriving there 3 January 1944, she for the next several weeks with the Fleet Sound School and trained sailors in ASW techniques.
Assigned to Escort Division 24, McAnn sailed for the Caribbean 29 February. Steaming via Trinidad, she joined convoy TJ 25 on 5 March and screened the ships through stormy seas en route to Recife, Brazil. On the 15th she rescued the entire crew of 10 men from a B‑17 which had splashed off the Brazilian coast the day before. McAnn arrived Recife 16 March.
Between 2 and 12 April McAnn cruised to Trinidad in the screen of convoy JT 27, and during the next 3 months she completed three additional escort runs between the Caribbean and Brazil. She completed this duty 12 July and 4 days later departed Recife as screen for Memphis (CL‑13). She cruised the South Atlantic in search of German submarines until returning to Recife 30 July.
McAnn underwent an upkeep and then steamed to Natal arriving 10 August. She decommissioned there 15 August and was transferred, under lend‑lease, to Brazil on the same date. She was commissioned in the Brazilian Navy on 16 August as Bracui (D‑23). She served on loan with Brazilian Navy until 30 June 1953 when she was retransferred to Brazil, permanently, under the Mutual Defense Assistance Pact. Into 1969, McAnn continues to serve as Bracui with the same efficiency and attention to duty that she did when she was a unit of the U.S. Navy.