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USS Astoria Battle of Savo Island KIA


mkite93
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Seaman Second Class Moran was one of 247 sailors killed or missing when the Astoria went down after the Battle of Savo Island on August 9th. I thought I would take a moment to honor his service and share some in aspects about this sailors life and service in which he gave his life. 
 

The Battle of Savo Island was a devastating one for the United States Navy.  Loosing three cruisers in a matter of hours as the Marines on Guadalcanal sat in watch not knowing an outcome until morning. The Astoria was the last of the three to slip beneath the waves even though there were hard fought attempts to save her. 
 

The most interesting aspect is that Seaman Moran isn’t Seaman Moran at all. This is information that nobody would know unless they were looking at his file, which there are many documents supporting. It seems he had some prior run ins with the law including an FBI file on him. With a desire to join the navy he provided a false name, birthday and place of birth and got in. Ultimately because the navy ran his fingerprints his true identity was leaned, but by that time the Astoria lay at the bottom of Iron Bottom Sound. The documents go as far Post Office letters from 1945 not wanting to release the Purple Heart to his brother because he attached his false last name to his brother as well and they couldn’t confirm identity. Eventually everything was settled and his brother was able to obtain his brothers medal.  Regardless of his prior history this man fought and died for his country so I thought I would do a posting to share an interesting story to remember one sailors sacrifice as well as all sailors lost at Savo. 3C2C2FAD-DC93-4AD8-BE83-4FB1E5621FA8.jpeg.a7630c207c56fd0b44c7b62db35e53f0.jpeg0EC1728C-F9B1-4065-8097-D417D13D85D6.jpeg.a5935672f06f6d4e4c102140be2f0787.jpeg52383D97-2F6E-46E1-B1BD-08159E3C2855.jpeg.dc7f53b08f067c1bdaf120a7977f8cf1.jpeg9A658785-BC8F-48CA-B3E9-C23B5C10BFC6.jpeg.6a921be96995390e9ad9a2be9142e7d2.jpeg983A7432-2046-40B8-8A7A-73B0B3AE756D.jpeg.0a8ea7d451ec89b795a859ee94d33783.jpeg46C53693-79A3-424F-99A2-74B737947DF1.jpeg.187f6fd3676a65a1f14c7339d4067a0b.jpegA17ED8B9-2D7A-4525-A83E-618BBBB7A730.jpeg.c44a06dea22a209ac4110839327803f4.jpeg

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Trevor Arendall

Wow! What a great piece of history. I am still looking to get a Savo Island KIA PH. Thank you for remembering his sacrifice! 

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Kurt Barickman

Great story and PH. Those early USN battles in the Pacific are truly interesting stories as the US was just hanging on by their fingernails and the Japanese held all the cards. The fate of the war was clearly in up in the air as which side would prevail. Thanks for posting and sharing.

Kurt

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Thanks for the comments. This PH makes for an interesting story in a very historic battle. This battle was a truly crushing blow to the US Navy loosing so many men and three of our top cruisers in one night. 

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aerialbridge

Interesting that if  the Navy knew his actual name, they issued the PH under his alias.  Wonder how he came to choose "Jean Moran", and  if he borrowed the last name from another individual of that era on the FBI's radar.  Whatever his past, he died a hero.  Thanks for posting. 

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Kurt Barickman

New Hampton Iowa is not too far from where I live.

 

Kurt

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mkite93

At the very least it makes for an interesting story. The thought had entered my mind that he had possibly crossed paths with famous gangster Bugs Moran or someone connected with him serving in prison and he just took the last name if it came to mind at the time, but that is purely speculation and far fetched although i wish we knew the real story.

 

Kurt, that is interesting that you live close to that area, thanks for sharing.

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