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First To Die

May 2024
1min read

An item in the excellent “Time Machine” feature in your October issue asserted that the eleven crewmen lost when the destroyer USS Kearny was torpedoed in 1941 “had become the first Americans to die” in World War II.

They were the first American servicemen to die in the European theater, but it should be remembered that six valiant American Red Cross nurses on their way to succor the blitz-battered British perished in the North Atlantic after U-boats torpedoed the SS Vigrid and the SS Maasdam on June 10 and 18, 1941—some four months before the October 17 attack on the Kearny .

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