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Martin H. Ray (DE-338)

(DE‑338; dp. 1,200; l. 306'; b. 36'7"; dr. 8'7"; s. 21 k.; cpl. 186; a. 3 3", 6 40mm., 10 20mm., 2 dct. 8 dcp., 1 dcp. (h.h.); cl. Edsall )

Martin H. Ray, Jr., was born 9 August 1913, in Philadelphia, Pa., and educated in Yonkers, N.Y. After 1 year at New York University he entered the Naval Academy, graduating with the class of 1934. Following 5 years service on battleship Pennsylvania, he received orders to Hammann in 1939. While assisting the stricken Yorktown in the last stages of the Battle of Midway, 6 June 1942, Hammann took a torpedo. Lieutenant Ray as engineering officer was lost attempting to save the rapidly sinking vessel and evacuate the space below decks. The Navy Cross was awarded "For extraordinary heroism and extreme disregard of personal safety...."

Martin H. Ray (DE‑338) was laid down 27 October 1943 by Consolidated Steel Corp., Orange, Tex.; launched 23 December 1943; sponsored by Mrs. M. H. Ray, Jr., widow of Lt. Ray, and commissioned 28 February 1944, Lt. H. V. Tucker, Jr., in command.

After a month's shakedown cruise to Bermuda, Martin H. Ray spent 3 weeks at Norfolk training prospective destroyer‑escort crews. June 1944 marked the beginning of a 12‑month period in which not one ship was lost by the 14 convoys she escorted. Coastal assignments yielded to transatlantic voyages when she sailed from Norfolk, 1 July, bound for Naples. After two voyages to Italy she departed New York 20 October on the first of five voyages to the British Isles and France. Besides depth charging every probable submarine contact Martin H. Ray and the other escorts honed their professional effectiveness by additional training periods at the conclusion of each of these passages.

Following Nazi Germany's collapse, new orders directed the ship to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, for training before joining the Pacific Fleet. She transited the Panama Canal. 2 August 1945, and was at Pearl Harbor when the conflict ceased. Ali abbreviated "Magic Carpet" voyage terminated at San Diego, 11 September, with the debarkation of 58 military passengers. Two days, later she sailed to the Philadelphia Navy Yard to prepare for assignment to the Atlantic Reserve Fleet. Martin H. Ray decommissioned in March 1946, at Green Cove Springs, Fla., and was struck from the Navy list 1 May 1966. The following September she was scrapped.

Published: Thu Aug 06 08:32:19 EDT 2015