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The Bergall at Midway

From the Naval Historical Center:

Underway from Pearl Harbor on 3 December, Bergall slowly sailed southwest, diving at 50-mile intervals to take underwater gravity measurements.  She crossed the equator on the 9th near the Gilbert Islands and moored at Brisbane, Australia, on 20 December.  A week later, she headed north toward Guam and, after taking more measurements every 50 miles, the submarine arrived in Apra harbor on 7 January 1949.  After disembarking the scientists and unloading their equipment, Bergall commenced two weeks of shore bombardment and ASW exercises, including a mission against Astoria (CL-90), James E. Kyes (DD-787), and Shelton (DD-790), in and around the Mariana Islands.

Departing for Japan on 20 January, the submarine conducted more ASW exercises out of Sasebo and in the waters off Okinawa.  She also provided target services to 7th Fleet land-based patrol aircraft.  During these exercise, Bergall discovered that, at least during calm weather, patrol planes could drop sono-buoys near her and vector in supporting destroyers who successfully “pinned down” the submarine.  In rougher weather, swirling water smothered the passive sono-buoys with white noise and the submarine always escaped.  Bergall departed Okinawa on 15 February; and, after a brief refueling stop at Midway, she returned to Pearl Harbor on the 28th.  The submarine then conducted local operations in Hawaiian waters for the remainder of the year.


Sub vet Don Sparks sent us these pictures that his brother-in-law, Harold Ryan, SGT, USAF-Ret took while he was on Midway and believes they were taken on 20 February 1949.   Of special note is that the 5"/25cal deck gun, mounted in 46 to her forward deck has been removed and this is back to near her configuration at the end of the war!

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