History of the McCaffery - 1971


On 1 January 1971, McCaffery was moored at Mayport, Florida. Commanding Officer - CDR A.F. Martin

On 11 January, McCaffery got underway for Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and arrived on 16 January. Refresher training was conducted in port and at sea until 12 February. She proceeded to St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, before participating in "FIREX 71", a gunfire support exercise at Vieques and Culebra Islands on 16-18 February. After a brief stop at San Juan, Puerto Rico, on 18 February, McCaffery got underway for exercises during which she fired and recovered of a practice torpedo. McCaffery moored at San Juan 19-22 February, and returned to Mayport on 25 February. On 11 March, McCaffery got underway for Port Kennedy and Port Canaveral, and operated with Von Stuben (SSBN-632) for a Poseidon test launch. She returned to Mayport on 16 March.

McCaffery got underway on 21 April for various drills and exercises, and arrived at Roosevelt Roads, Puerto Rico, on 24 April. After refueling, McCaffery got underway for Porto Grande, Cape Verde Island, and arrived on 30 April. From this port, McCaffery visited briefly Dakar, Senegal, and then steamed with William C. Lawe (DD-763) for Abidjan, in the Gulf of Guinea, Ivory Coast, West Africa, and arrived on 6 May. On 9 May, McCaffery got underway for Luanda, Angola, and arrived on 12 May. The ship crossed the equator during this leg of the voyage; also, OTC Captain R.E. Wilson was on board. On 14 May, McCaffery got underway for Lourenco Marques, the capital and largest city of Mozambique, East Africa, and arrived on 21 May. She nested with various ships of the Portuguese Navy, since Mozambique was under Portuguese administration.

Chronology of operations during June & July
     27 May -1 June     - moored at Mombassa, Kenya
     6-11 June     - steamed and anchored at Fortune Bank, Seychelles Island
     11-15 June     - anchored at Victoria, Seychelles Island
     21-25 June     - moored at Karachi, Pakistan where she received American Consul General & senior Pakistani naval officers
     29 June - 2 July   - moored at Kharg Island, Iran in Persian Gulf
     3-5 July     - moored at Ras Tanura, Saudia Arabia
     6-10 July   - operated off Bahrain with HMS Brereton (MMC-1113), HMS Puncherton (MSC-1174), & Lawe (DD-763)

On 15 July, Rear Admiral M. Bayne, USN - COMIDEASTFOR - arrived on board for a change of command ceremony.
CDR R.R. Briner relieved CDR A.F. Martin as the commanding officer of McCaffery.

On 21 July, McCaffery got underway from Bahrain for Assab, Ethiopia. On 22 July, a class "C" fire occurred in the wardroom with minor damage. On 23 July, a strange phenomenon occurred on the 2000-2400 watch. The following quote from the daily log follows.
"Visibility reduced suddenly. A strange unexplainable phosphorescence has engulfed the ship, developed a split seam at frame 140 starboard side, 7 feet below the waterline. Flooding evaluated at five gallons per hour. Extra pumps have been lined up in case the flooding gets worse. 2308 the phosphorescence ended. All conditions normal. At 2325 entered another area of extraordinary luminescence of the sea. 2350 luminescence ended." S.E. Pilnick, ENS.

On 27 July, McCaffery moored at Assab, Ethiopia. To repair the split seam in starboard side of the after engine room, flooding compartments on the port side commenced, which produced a 15 degree list to port. After repairs were completed, McCaffery got underway on 28 July for Massawa, Ethiopia, and moored there on 31 July. During this stop over, McCaffery received the Governor of Massawa and other official visitors.

On 4 August, McCaffery got underway for Djibouti in the French Territories of Afars and Issas, on the Gulf of Aden, and arrived on 8 August. After refueling and taking on water, McCaffery got underway for Port Louis, Mauritius, a tiny island approximately 1200 miles east of Madagascar, and arrived on 17 August. While emroute to Port Louis, McCaffery was steaming at various speeds, while she circled the Soviet space vehicle recovery ship Dauriya.

On 19 August, McCaffery was relieved of Middle East duties by Noa (DD-841). The following is a chronology of the voyage home.
     21 August     - underway for Lourenco Marques, Mozambique, and arrived on 24 August
     25 August     - underway for Luanda, Angola, and arrived on 31 August.
     2 September - Captain R.E. Wilson, COMDESDIV 82, transferred flag from Lawe (DD-863) to McCaffery - underway for Recife, Brazil.
     8 September - Captain R.E. Wilson, COMDESDIV 82, transferred flag back to Lawe (DD-763).
     9 September - arrived at Recife, Brazil.
   10 September - underway for Port-of-Spain, Trinidad, and arrived on 15 September.
   17 September - underway for Mayport, Florida, and arrived on 20 September

On 28 September, McCaffery became a member of Destroyer Squadron 18 under command of Captain L.K. Fenlon, USN, headquartered in Key West, Florida. McCaffery joined destroyers Lawe and Perry, homeported at Mayport, and destroyer escorts T.L. Gray, Kretchmer, and Calcaterra, homeported at Key West. Gunnery, ASW, refueling at sea, and man overboard exercises were conducted 15-19 November in the Jacksonville operating area. Full power and gunnery exercises were conducted during the period of 7-10 December. McCaffery remained in port for the remainder of the year.

On 31 December 1971, McCaffery was moored at Mayport, Florida.

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