mlah The “culture” that has evolved here isn’t conducive to sissies

December 7, 2005

Meet the Family 5

Filed under: Misc — mlah @ 10:53 pm

Oglala Sioux warriors.

i’m going to to have to get some picture sof my great uncle and post them up at a later time. but today, as late as it is belongs to my great uncle whoim i am named after.

he’s like my grand dad, although i just call him uncle.

my grandfather died when my father was young and my grandfather’s brother, my dad’s uncle, and my great uncle took my dad out and introduced him to all the things that dad’s introduce their sons too in the great state of texas.

hunting, fishing, chasing hookers in mexico.

i don’t know about that last one. i’m just trying to increase my readership.

have i ever mentioned i was in the navy?

so was my uncle.

my uncle joined the navy in 1939. i don’t know what day, or even month. i’ve seen his company picture from boot camp in san diego. the year was 1939.

Oglala after repairs

he was stationed on this ship in 1941

the uss oglala (CM-4) was a heavy minesweeper / layer. of wwi vintage. oglala is one of the sioux tribes for those of you wondering what an oglala is.

my uncle told me it was all leaky and pretty much lucky to be afloat.

on the 40th anniversary of pearl harbor, he described the day to me.

they had set sail out around the hawaiin islands in early december with a few hundred live mines. maybe as many as 800 if memory serves.

they finally got orders to lay the mines on dec 6th and spent all day throwing the ordinance over the side. while carrying the mines, he told me they weighed the ship down so much that it sat really low in the water. he was even a little worried about the ship capsizing.

but after the mines were gone, they were floating in the water like a piece of balsa wood.HIGH!.

so early in the morning on dec 7, 1941, the mighty oglala entered port pearl harbor hawaii.

at least they were all awake.

they tied up beside the uss helena. a cruiser. an old school cruiser. with some actual hull. not the 2 hulls of 1 1/2 inches each on modern ticonderoga class cruisers.

that’s important here. a zero dropped it’s torpedo at the oglala/helena. the two ships were tied up next to each other, so that it was pier, helena, oglala, pearl harbor.

the torpedo went underneath the oglala because it was sitting so high in the water and hit the helena! it detonated and caused some damage. the helena listed and needed repair.

the oglala sank. that’s right. the torpedo hit the helena and the explosion sank the oglala.

my uncle told me that 5 zeroes, one at a time dropped their torpedos at the oklahoma. they just all happened to be relatively side by side. he said it looked like a hand going through the water and just reached into the side of the oklahoma and stripped the hull away.

it rolled over in under 2 minutes.

later in the afternoon, he and a friend took machine guns off of dead marines and they went to the beach and waited for the invasion.

that was dec 7th for my uncle.

later in the war, my uncle survived a kamikaze attack off of honshu. but that story is another day. and with pictures of my namesake.

now i shall enjoy an ice cold beer in sub freezing san antonio texas.

the oglala after capsizing dec 7, 1941

the oglala after capsizing dec 7, 1941

the oglala after capsizing dec 7, 1941

the oglala after capsizing dec 7, 1941

you can read a little bit of the official account here.


  1. damn dude thats some crazy shit!!!

    Comment by CT — December 8, 2005 @ 2:25 pm

  2. Thanks for sharing, mlah. Those are some powerful pictures.

    Comment by Alli — December 8, 2005 @ 5:12 pm

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