New Mexico PBS "Moments in Time": USS New Mexico BB40: The Drinan Diary

Flagship of the American fleet, for over 30 years the USS New Mexico was the pride of the US Navy. Learn about the history of the “Queen” from her on board activities to dramatic accounts of the fierce fighting in the Pacific theater. Included are eye witness accounts from the Robert T. Drinan diary that vividly details how the ship suffered from kamikaze attacks during the battle of Okinawa. The video is narrated by Dean Stockwell with diary entries read by John Wertheim.

27 thoughts on “New Mexico PBS "Moments in Time": USS New Mexico BB40: The Drinan Diary

  1. My father, Andy Anderson Sr. was a gunners mate on the Queen from 1941 to 1945. He was a loader for the 14 inch rifles ( he told me never call them guns) and was onboard at Linguyan Gulf and Okinawa for both kamikazi strikes. He’s with his mates now having passed 12 years ago today, a week short of his 84th birthday. I hope all that are still living are living well, and those who have passed rest easy now. He lived to see the New Mexico return as a nuclear submarine and that made him happy.

  2. BattlePig101 says:

    Does anyone know who the Captain of the USS New Mexico was after her original Captain was killed by a kamikaze on January 6th 1945?

  3. Bruce Boatwright says:

    I think that's an underwater torpedo tube door @.51 seconds, as originally built.

  4. Phoebe Moody Isaacs says:

    My father, Roy P Moody, of Franklin Texas, enlisted in the Navy in Houston during June 1940 and was assigned to the USS New Mexico. He proudly served aboard 'The Queen' from September 1940 until March 1945. The USS New Mexico was part of the U.S. Naval convoy in the Atlantic that delivered armaments to aid Great Britain to fight Germany. German U-boats patrolled the North Atlantic and shot at the convoy in an effort to prevent it from successfully delivering their cargo to England …. but they missed sinking 'The Queen'. The next most memorable time for the men aboard the USS New Mexico was the time it spent at Pearl Harbor. They sailed out of Pearl only a few days prior to the Japanese attack. My father said that at the time they left for sea … the men aboard her felt envious of the men who were staying in Honolulu aboard their battleships. He was eventually promoted to the rank of Chief Petty Officer and was the ship's Chief Storekeeper for the rest of the duration he served aboard her. He also really liked it whenever she was docked at Bremerton, Washington. He befriended a young Country & Western singer from Waco Texas who was also serving aboard the ship … a young man by the name of Hank Thompson. Hank Thompson sometimes performed onboard the ship for the men … and he let my father occasionally join him onstage to sing. My father was eventually transferred off the USS New Mexico to a smaller vessel in March 1945. He remained in the Navy until after the war in 1946. He was born on January 13, 1922, and peacefully passed away at his home in Brenham, Texas, on September 10, 1998. Rest in eternal peace …. until we meet again. I love you and I think of you every day.

  5. wim toelke says:

    My dear friend Al Jacobs who died earlier this year at 93 years was a gunner's mate on the BB40 during the whole campaign in the Pacific. He saw all the battles and all the hardship of a war. He gave me his cap which I sometimes wear – with great pride. He was a Jew from New York and I am a German, born 1952. I was so proud to be his friend and so happy we never had to fight each other. Hope to meet you again Al !

  6. FriskyDingo says:

    I have a photo of my grandfather on the central gun of the forward turret. One of my favorite pics i have of him. God bless the New Mexico.

  7. stefan maass says:

    My dearest friend Albert Jacobs, who was a gunner's mate on the New Mexico during the whole WWII, died on March 8th, 2019, at 92 years. There were 150 people at his funeral in Tampa. You can have a look at his obituary at
    I will never forget this man and I will proudly wear his BB40 cap from now on. Rest in peace, buddy, I know you are having fun wherever you are now. I am German and I am so grateful for having had the opportunity to be friends with not only an American war hero who helped to determine my life (where would I be today without these men?) but also the fact that he was Jewish and loved me for the person I am, and not for what my country did to his people.

  8. GotDramaAllergy says:

    Thank you for posting this..My Uncle Butch,"Anthony Carpenetti" was one of them lost when Kamikaze hit his gun battery.My family had 5 brothers who served,2 where lost.All were Navy but Leo,he was Army and lent to 1st marines on that terrible hill in Okinawa where many fell..Respect to them and all they're brothers in battle who sacrificed for our beautiful flag.

  9. J Mechanic says:

    I have the utmost respect for these brave sailors who served in the Pacific. My grandfather was a radioman aboard the USS New Mexico shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor and witnessed the Japanese surrender in Tokyo Bay. He like many others was saddened to have witnessed this magnificent battleship dismantled after the war to be sold for scrap metal. I still remember the stories he told me about the hell they all bravely faced every day during the Pacific War. RIP Bobby Gordon 1929-2014. I miss you everyday!

  10. CaesarInVa says:

    I got a laugh out of the part about "loose language". Clearly, The Salvo's writers never met Admirals King or Halsey, both of whom could peel the paint off the bulkheads with their profanity.

  11. Sir Colesworth Sheepmen says:

    just got curious after seeing Pearl Harbor and USS Arizona sinking… not disappointed!

  12. Robert Deebach says:

    My dad was on the Queen for the whole of World War 2. Gunners mate. Good father he died 2017

  13. Harold Sullivan says:

    My father was a hospital corpsman on BB40 – i use his name for comments – he was off the ship by the time of the kamakazi attack, though…

  14. David Ringo says:

    Honor nothing but honor..These men are the real Americans….

  15. Jeana Leigh says:

    My Grandfather was a Lieutenant Commander on the USS New Mexico.

  16. My grandfather, Russell Gilbertson served on this ship during WWII. He told me many stories about his time on the ship, most notably being attacked by 3 kamikaze's. One was shot down, one crashed into the sea, missing it's mark, but the third kamikaze aircraft hit it's mark just below the tower, rupturing one of the boilers and killing the captain.

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