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Moray (SS-300)

(SS‑300: dp. 1,526 (surf.), 2,424 (subm.); l. 311'8"; b. 27'3"; dr. 15'3" (mean); s. 20.25 k. (surf.), 8.75 k. (subm.); cpl. 66; a. 1 5", 2 .50 cal. mg., 1 40mm., 10 21" tt.; cl. Balao)

A species of savagely voracious and brightly colored eels found in crevices of coral reefs between Pensacola and Rio de Janeiro.

Moray (SS‑300) was laid down 21 April 1943 at Cramp Shipbuilding Co., Philadelphia, Pa.; launched 14 May 1944; sponsored by Mrs. Styles Bridges, wife of the New Hampshire Senator; and commissioned 26 January 1945, Comdr. Frank L. Barrows in command.

She departed Philadelphia 31 January 1945, arriving New London, Conn., 1 February. After shakedown training there and off Newport, R.I., Moray left New London with Carp (SS‑338) and Gillette (DE‑681) 14 April for Balboa, Panama, C.Z., arriving 25 April. Underway 5 May, Moray arrived Pearl Harbor 21 May for final training, after which she sailed for the Marianas 7 June, arriving Saipan 20 June.

The submarine cleared Saipan 27 June for her first war patrol as the senior unit of a coordinated attack group including Sea Poacher (SS‑406), Angler (SS‑240), Cero (98‑225), Lapon (SS‑260), and Carp (SS‑338). Comdr. Barrows in Moray assigned stations when the group reached its patrol area off Tokyo 1 July. The first phase of this patrol centered on lifeguard duty. From 7 to 9 July Moray's special mission was service as picketboat southeast of Honshu in preparation for 3d Fleet bombardment. Then she continued lifeguard operations.

By June 1945, brilliantly successful American submarine operations had made enemy targets almost nonexistent, and lifeguard duty became a vital mission for American submarines. However, Moray did get a chance at some action, when she and Kingfish (SS‑234) attacked a convoy off Kinkazan, Honshu, 10 July. Allowing Kingfish to attack first, Moray then moved in to fire six torpedoes, then pulled out to rearm and permit Kingfish a second stab. A few moments later one of Moray's torpedoes bit a whaler.

No other shipping was sighted; on 16 July the patrol was shifted to the Kurile Islands. Moray completed her patrol at Midway 6 August. On 1 September the submarine sailed for the west coast, arriving San Francisco, Calif., 11 September. She then went into deactivation overhaul at Mare Island Navy Yard. She decommissioned 12 April 1946 and entered the Pacific Reserve Fleet in January 1947. She was redesignated AGSS‑300 on 1 December 1962 and was struck from the Navy list 1 April 1967 for sinking as a target.

Moray received one battle star for World War II service.

Published: Thu Apr 21 08:27:42 EDT 2016