Tuesday, October 25, 2005

The Battle of Surigao Strait

Sixty-one years ago on this date three American destroyers, Hoel, Heermann and Johnston, hurled themselves at a Japanese force of 4 battleships and 8 cruisers. Terriers attacking a wolfpack. The Hoel and Johnston, along with the destroyer escort Samuel B. Roberts were sunk, but the carriers they had been protecting were saved. October 25th, 1944 was the ninetieth anniversary of the Charge of the Light Brigade.

During the Battle of Leyte Gulf (of which the Battle of Surigao Strait was a part), from 22-27 October, 1944 - six days - the United States suffered 3,000 men killed in action.

Update: Sandy Shanks has written to point out that this engagement is properly called "The Battle of Samar".