Lt. (jg.) Alexander A. McCormick, USNRF, was born 15 December 1897 in Chicago, Ill. He enrolled in the U.S. Naval Reserve Force as ensign 2 November 1917 and was stationed at the Naval Air Station, Pensacola, Fla. until 28 May 1918. He then served with the aviation forces in France until his death, 24 September 1918, from injuries received in battle while aerial gunner on an RAF mission over the lines. Buried in the military cemetery at Calais, he was posthumously awarded the Navy Cross.
(DD‑223: dp. 1,190; l. 314' 5"; b. 31'9"; dr. 9'3"; s. 35 k.; cpl. 101; a. 4 4", 1 3", 12 21" tt.; cl. Clemson.)
McCormick (DD‑223) was laid down 11 August 1919 by Win. Cramp & Sons, Philadelphia, Pa.; launched 14 February 1920; sponsored by Miss Katherine McCormick, sister of Lieutenant (jg.) McCormick; and commissioned 30 August 1920, Lt. Cmdr. L. C. Scheibla in command.
Following shakedown, McCormick served a year with Destroyer Squadron 5, Pacific Fleet. She then returned to the east coast for deployment with Destroyer Detachment, Naval Forces in European Waters. There she served in a quasi‑diplomatic capacity in the eastern Mediterranean until the spring of 1924, after successful negotiations for a peace treaty between the Allies and Turkey.
The following year, she was assigned to the Asiatic Fleet. Operating from Cavite, she served as flagship for DesDiv 39, later 14, in support of the Yangtze River and South China patrols until 1932. On 15 March she was ordered back to the United States and home ported at San Diego, where she decommissioned 14 October 1938.
The following year, as hostilities in Europe increased, McCormick was brought out of the Inactive Reserve. Recommissioned 26 September 1939, she was assigned to neutrality patrol in the Atlantic. The entry of the U.S. into the worldwide conflict brought only an increase in antisubmarine activities for the destroyer as she continued her voyages to Iceland and across the Atlantic.
Through the end of 1942, McCormick plied the North Atlantic on runs to Halifax, Argentia, and Londonderry. Shifting southward, 7 February 1943, she escorted convoys bound for Casablanca. On 12 July, on a return voyage, the escort carrier Santec, providing air cover for the convoy, was relieved by Core; but before Santec departed the area, four U‑boats were discovered in the convoy’s vicinity. For the next 4 days, planes from the carriers scouted and destroyed all four: Santec, U‑160 on the 14th and U‑509 on the 15th; Core, U‑487 on the 13th and U‑67 on the 16th. On the last date, McCormick picked up three survivors from U‑67 for later transferral.
McCormick returned to New York 24 July and continued to escort convoys until 5 December. She then joined the carrier Croatan, TG 27.4, for a quick voyage to Casablanca and back, before overhaul at New York.
The destroyer’s next assignment sent her to Natal, Brazil, and then Casablanca, escorting seaplane tender Albemarle. On 1 April 1944, she was ordered to Boston to resume escort and antisubmarine patrol duties. In May, McCormick returned to transatlantic convoy duty with a run to north Africa. During the next 4 months she touched at various foreign ports, including Bizerte, Oran, Cherbourg, Falmouth, Belfast, and Milford Haven. Upon her return to Boston, 1 October. she spent 3 months in convoy and patrol operations off the east coast and in the Caribbean before shifting back to the Casablanca run in January 1945.
On 31 March, McCormick departed Norfolk for temporary duty with SubRon 3 at Balboa, Canal Zone. While with the Panama sea frontier, she was reclassified miscellaneous auxiliary, AG‑118, 30 June 1945. Two weeks later she got underway for overhaul at Boston, arriving 21 July. Still undergoing repairs when peace came, McCormick decommissioned 4 October 1945. Her name was struck from the Navy list 24 October 1945 and her hulk was sold for scrapping to Boston Metals Co., Baltimore, Md., 15 December 1946.