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My Dad and The USS TERN (AM-31) On Dec 7, 1941

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Posted 3 years ago


(288 items)

My dad (John) was assigned to the USS Tern after boot camp in 1939. The Pacific fleet was moved from San Pedro, CA to Hawaii in June 1940. On Dec 7, 1941 my dad was walking over to the USS Helena to meet up with a buddy of his, they had plans to go to Pearl City that day. John started up the gangplank of the Helena when he heard machine gun fire from the Japanese torpedo bombers. All hell broke loose and he headed back to the Tern with was moored at the end of 1010 dock. He boarded the Tern and
started firing the ships 30 caliber Lewis machine gun. The Tern was credited with shooting down one plane. photo 3 the USS TERN putting out fires on the USS West Virginia.


  1. ttomtucker ttomtucker, 3 years ago
    Thank you mustangtony, vetraio50
  2. ttomtucker ttomtucker, 3 years ago
    Thank you Kevin
  3. walksoftly walksoftly, 3 years ago
    Your dad's story really brings these static images too life, thanks for sharing!
  4. ttomtucker ttomtucker, 3 years ago
    walksoftly, Thank you for you comment
  5. walksoftly walksoftly, 3 years ago
    Most welcome!
  6. miKKoChristmas11 miKKoChristmas11, 3 years ago
    Wonderful photos, and a vivid account of a brave man and country under attack!!!
  7. Beckham, 3 years ago
    A very good friend was on the Tern December 7th, John A Hein was a neighbor and friend in California.
  8. ttomtucker ttomtucker, 3 years ago
    Beckham, Are we are talking about same Commander John Hein, he was on the Tern with my dad. John Hein was then a Signal 1st class and was promoted to warrant officer (Boatswain) around 1938. He was considered an older sailor since he had joined the Navy in 1926 and retired in 1957. He lived a long life passing on in 1996 and is buried at Riverside National Cemetery.
  9. lundy lundy, 3 years ago
    that s great ,
  10. Militarist Militarist, 3 years ago
    Neat!! He looks like the young man on the 77 Sunset Strip tv show of many years ago.
  11. ttomtucker ttomtucker, 3 years ago
    Militarist, Do you mean Kookie, Kookie, lead me your comb. Edd Byrnes
  12. Militarist Militarist, 3 years ago
    Yes that's the name!! Thanks

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