I don’t know much about the photo, except a friend of my father named D.L. Brown saw it in the USS Arizona Museum sometime in the Late 70’s. He immediately recognized my dad, Richard Stopp, due to his hunched over shoulders. My father always had that stance. D.L. mailed him a copy. Later on, Dad received a US Navy copy, stamped on the back with the date, etc. That one is unfortunately gone. No idea where it went.
I was with my dad when he got the package with the picture in it, he was shocked. First words out of his mouth, “I’ll be damned!” He was pretty happy to receive it. I also have a copy of his logbook where he wrote about watching their new PBY blow up. They never got a chance to fly in it. My dad was a radioman. He said he came close to crying and added, “she would have been a good ship.”
He was on the first plane to take off after the Zeros, never got close to them though.
Photo and story by guest contributor: Mary Johanson