Sunday, May 29, 2005

Gunner's Mate 1st Class

Jeff Dowell, 1922 - 2002

This is my Dad, Jeff Dowell, Jr. in 1943.  He was Gunner's Mate 1st Class aboard the USS Tappahannock, a tanker servicing ships in the Pacific Theater during World War II.

He was about 21 years old, 5'11", with very pale blonde hair and blue, blue eyes.  He was neat and trim and looked good in his US Navy uniform.

  The USS Tappahannock was a tanker.  My father told stories of how he would have to send a connecting line over the water to the ship they were servicing, and to do this he would shoot it over the water with his 4-10 shotgun.  My mother still has that gun.

I have not written in this journal for a long while.  I've been busy, but also I've been a little depressed and down lately.  The three-year anniversary of my father's death just recently passed, and I think that has been weighing on my mind more than I had realized.  He died May 19, 2002 and was buried on May 23.  My Mom and two of my sisters were up visiting today and my mother brought some of her old photos that I had asked for.  I wanted to scan them into my computer so I could copy them.  That got me to thinking about Daddy and I wanted to share this handsome photo of him with my journal.  I'll probably write some more a little later.  I will also put this entry in my other journal,

For more information and pictures on USS Navy Oilers or on the USS Tappahannock:

AO-43 USS Tappahannock

  • Mattaponi class Fleet Oiler:
  • Displacement: 21,750 tons
  • Length: 520'
  • Beam: 68'
  • Draft: 30'6"
  • Speed: 17 knots (max); 10.5 knots (econ)
  • Armament: 1 5"/38 DP, 4 3"/50 DP, 4x2 40mm, 4x2 20mm
  • Complement: 242
  • Capacity: 135,000 barrels
  • Geared turbine engines, single screw, 12,800 hp
  • Maritime Commission T2-A (MC-K)type
  • Built at Sun Shipbuilding & Drydock Co. and commissioned 22 Jun 1942
  • ex-SS Jorkay

Additional Links:

Written by helmswondermom . (Link to this entry)