USS McCaffery - 1960

The History of the McCaffery - 1960


On 1 January 1960, McCaffery was moored at Newport, R.I. Commanding officer - CDR T.M. Lemon, Jr.

On 8 January McCaffery lost steering control from the bridge while coming alongside Keppler(DDE-765) for a highline transfer, and used an emergency breakaway procedure to avoid a collision. On 9 January, mooring lines 4, 5, and 6, as well as a raft on the port side aft, were washed overboard during heavy weather. McCaffery returned to Newport, and on 13 January Rear Admiral A.M. Shinn, Sr. Commander Carrier Division 14 came aboard to render honors to Captain T.M. Lemon. After an overnight dry dock availability at Davisville, R.I., McCaffery returned to Newport. The remainder of January was spent in the Newport operating area conducting exercises with ships of DESRON 24, including Lloyd Thomas, Keppler, Harwood, Berry, Norris, and Blandy, and the carrier Wasp. McCaffery returned to Newport on 8 February. On 29 February McCaffery got underway for San Juan, Puerto Rico, and arrived on 4 March.

McCaffery conducted exercises with frigate Willis A. Lee(DL-4), and made a highline transfer with Lloyd Thomas. McCaffery proceeded to Culebra Island for shore bombardment from 8000 yards off shore. After a visit to Charlotte Amalie Harbor Submarine Base, St. Thomas, V.I., COMDESRON 24 moved his flag to McCaffery on 14 March for a couple of days, and then returned his flag to Blandy. After a brief visit to San Juan, McCaffery got underway for Norfolk, and arrived on 21 March. Underway on 25 March, McCaffery proceeded to investigate an unusual glow that was sighted on the horizon, which turned out to be a burning fishing boat. A message from the Coast Guard identified the vessel as the David A., and that all personnel had been safely removed before the vessel sank. McCaffery arrived at Newport on 26 March.

On 4 April, McCaffery got underway for hunter-killer operations with Valley Forge (CVS-45), and Skipjack (SSN-585). On 8 April, while on plane guard assignment, an aircraft crashed in the water 1500 yards off the starboard quarter. Along with Keppler, Berry, and Norris, McCaffery proceeded to the area marked by a smoke light, and recovered some debris. McCaffery returned to Newport on 18 April. On 2 May, got underway for various exercises in the Newport operating area until 17 May.

On 18 July, CDR R.D. Fisher relieved CDR T.M. Lemon as commanding officer of McCaffery.

On 8 June, McCaffery arrived at Norfolk. Twenty midshipmen reported aboard for MEDMIDCRU 60. McCaffery then got underway for the midshipmen Mediterrean cruise. McCaffery exercised and trained at sea until standing in at Rota, Spain on 20 June. Proceeding into the Mediterrean Sea, McCaffery punctuated her at-sea periods with highline transfers and underway fueling exercises, and, on 25 June, anchored at Golfo de Palmas, Sardinia. McCaffery proceeded to Barcelona, Spain, and arrived on 2 July for a brief port visit. McCaffery arrived at Palma, Mallorca, on 8 July. Ships of the Sixth Fleet, as well as ships of the Italian, French, and Spanish navies were also moored at Palma.

McCaffery got underway for Naples, Italy, and conducted ASW exercises while en route. McCaffery anchored in the harbor for a brief period on 21 July, and then got underway for Cannes, France. During this leg of the cruise, McCaffery, with the assistance of the Requin (SS-481), recovered a man who had fallen overboard. McCaffery arrived at Cannes on 29 July, and remained in port until 3 August, when she got underway for La Spezin, Italy, for a short port visit. McCaffery then returned to Naples, and arrived on 6 August. On 12 August, McCaffery began the homeward voyage, and stopped at Gibraltar for a two-day visit on 20 August.

After McCaffery departed Gibraltar, the Midshipmen were transferred by highline to Valley Forge (CVS-45), for disembarkation at Norfolk. McCaffery continued on to Newport, and arrived on 31 August.

During the months of September and October, McCaffery remained in the Newport area. On 21 October, McCaffery steamed for Bridgeport, CT., and returned to Newport on 23 October. On 9 November, McCaffery entered dry dock, and remained there through November. She left the dry dock on 1 December, and spent 9 December at sea for electrical causualty drills. The balance of December was spent at Newport with brief periods at sea.

On 31 December, 1960, McCaffery was moored at Newport, R.I.

SOURCE: USS McCAFFERY -- 1945-1974 by Edward W. (Bill) Maslak