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    Iwo Jima & Okinawa Destroyer - USS Wiley (DD-749/DM-29/MMD-29), the "Hammering Hank". The USS Henry A. Wiley was a Robert H. Smith-class destroyer-minelayer in the United States Navy. She was named for Admiral Henry Ariosto Wiley (January 31, 1867 - May 20, 1943), who was an officer in the United States Navy during the Spanish-American War and World Wars I & II. He skippered the USS Wyoming during WWI, was promoted to admiral and named Commander-in-chief, United States Fleet until his 1929 retirement to become Chairman of the U.S. Maritime Commission, where he was considered the "Father of the Merchant Marine Cadet Corps." He was called back to duty in 1941 and served until his death in 1943. The USS Henry A. Wiley (DM-29) was commissioned on August 31, 1944, Commander Robert Emmett Gadrow commanding.

    The ensign of the H.A. Wiley is size #7, wool, 61" X 117", ensign with double applique stars, sewn stripes, and finished with a header and four grommets, typical of U.S. Navy yard made ensigns. The flag is marked, "USS HENRY A WILEY (DD 749) CMDR. R.E. GADROW" and "HAMMERING HANK."

    After her shakedown cruise, the Henry A. Wiley sailed to the Pacific Theater where she would earn her nickname the "Hammering Hank." Arriving for duty at Pearl Harbor in December of 1945, she joined the fleet for the Iwo Jima campaign, where she escorted battleships, screened ships and, pouring over 3,600 rounds into Mount Suribachi, provided gunfire support.

    She next prepared for the more arduous Okinawa Campaign, the largest amphibious operation of the War. Again she provided screening and minesweeping duties while fighting off constant air attacks. She downed five kamikazes before shifting to picket duty, where she would fight off over 60 separate air attacks and was credited with downing another 15 enemy planes and rescuing the survivors of the USS Luce, her sister ship. For her actions at Okinawa, her skipper was accorded the Navy Cross and the Legion of Merit.
    After Okinawa, she sailed to the East China Sea for minesweeping duty until the end of the war.

    The ensign of the Henry A. Wiley would be a welcome addition to an USN, destroyer/minesweeper, Iwo Jima, Okinawa, or naval war in the Pacific collection.

    For her WWII Service the USS Henry A. Wiley was awarded the Presidential Unit Citation, American Campaign Medal, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with four campaign stars, the Navy Occupation Service Medal, and the World War II Victory Medal.

    Condition: The ensign of the Henry A. Wiley is in good condition. It is used, worn, and soiled, but otherwise complete.

    This flag was formerly in the collection of Dr. Clarence Rungee, and is accompanied by his original museum inventory sheet with identifying information.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2020
    6th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 4
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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