Allied Warships

USS Laffey (i) (DD 459)

Destroyer of the Bristol class

NavyThe US Navy
PennantDD 459 
Built byBethlehem Shipbuilding Co. (San Francisco, California, U.S.A.) 
Ordered1 Jul 1940 
Laid down13 Jan 1941 
Launched30 Oct 1941 
Commissioned31 Mar 1942 
Lost13 Nov 1942 

USS Laffey (Lt.Cdr. William Edwin Hank, USN) fought several battles as the Navy's youngest destroyer. At Guadalcanal, 14-inch shells from the Japanese battleship Hiei ripped her open, starting fires. The order to abandon ship was given as a torpedo came and tore her to pieces, detonating her depth charges. 59 of the crew died and 186 were rescued by higgin boats though 114 were wounded. The Commanding officer was killed in the sinking and the Laffey earned a Presidential Unit Citation for this action.


Commands listed for USS Laffey (i) (DD 459)

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1Lt.Cdr. William Edwin Hank, USN31 Mar 194213 Nov 1942 (+)

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Media links

Destroyers of World War Two

Whitley, M. J.

Blood on the Sea

Parkin, Robert Sinclair
($ 15.98)

U.S. Destroyers

Friedman, Norman

United States Destroyer Operations In World War II.

Roscoe, Theodore

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