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Remembering World War II
Name: Darie Joseph Deveau Rank: Seaman First Class Service Number: 8037117 Service: USS Mississinewa, United States Navy Reserve, US Navy Awards: Purple Heart Date of Birth: August 11, 1918 Place of Birth: Salmon River, Digby Co., NS Date of Enlistment: February 14, 1944 Place of Enlistment: Boston, Massachusetts Address at Enlistment: Massachusetts Age at Enlistment: 25 Height: 5'' 8 1/2" Complexion: Light Brown Hair Color: Brown Eye Color: Brown Occupation: Fish packer Marital Status: Married Date of Death: November 20, 1944 Age: 26 Cemetery: Manila American Cemetery, Philippines Grave: Walls of the Missing Born Joseph Darie Deveau, Darie was the son of Enos (or Enoch) Joseph (1876-1946) and Mary Rose Deveau (1882-1936). Darie had a sister Margaret, and two brothers, Sylvester and Alfred. In Salmon River, Darie’s father worked as a farmer. The family moved to the United States in the mid-1920’s. In 1930, they were living on Trenton Street in East Boston, Mass. Much of the family worked in the fishing industry with both Darie’s father and brother Sylvester working as fish cutters in 1930. Darie’s mother died in 1936. By 1940, they were living three blocks north, at 2 White St Place. Sylvester had become a carpenter and the younger Alphie was working as a fish wrapper. Darie married Honor Mae Blackstock of Boston, Mass., on August 5, 1940 in Seabrook, Maine. Two months later, he registered for the US Draft on October 16, 1940, in Boston, Mass. He was working as a packer at the General Seafood Corporation on the Fish Pier in South Boston, Suffolk Co., Mass. Darie enlisted February 14, 1944. After induction and basic training, he was assigned to the USS Mississinewa (AO-59), a T3-S2-A1 auxiliary oiler of the US Navy, laid down on October 5, 1943. It was launched March 28 and commissioned May 19, 1944. Darie first boarded the USS Mississinewa the day before its commissioning on May 18, 1944, and appears on its muster rolls on June 30, September 30, and October 2, 1944. Having completed shakedown in the Chesapeake Bay, Darie Deveau and his ship sailed for Aruba, Dutch West Indies, to take on its first cargo. Filling the cargo tanks on June 23-24, the ship continued on to the Pacific Ocean, arriving in Pearl Harbor on July 10. As a unit of Service Squadron 10 (ServRon 10), the Mississinewa then steamed to Eniwetok where it first fuelled ships of the 3rd Fleet. On August 25, the ship departed for Manus where it supplied fuel and stores and delivered mail to ships of Task Force 38, the fast carrier force, 32 and 31 during the assault and occupation of the Palaus. Returning to Manus Island in Papua New Guinea on September 30, the ship replenished her tanks and again headed north to refuel Task Force 38 as that force struck at Japanese shipping and shore installations in the Philippines, on Taiwan, and in the Ryukyus in preparation for the Philippine campaign. On October 19, having emptied its tanks into ships scheduled to take part in the landings at Leyte, it sailed to Ulithi in the Caroline Islands, the ship’s new base. In early November, Mississinewa sailed its last fueling at sea assignment, returning on the 15th. The next day, the ship replenished its cargo tanks, filling them almost to capacity with 404,000 US gallons of aviation gas, 9000 barrels of diesel fuel, and 90000 barrels of fuel oil. Four days later, November 20, it was still anchored in berth No. 131. At 05:47, shortly after reveille, a heavy explosion rocked the oiler. Seconds later, fumes in an aviation gas cargo tank ignited, causing a second explosion. Massive flames immediately burst from midship forward. Bunker C oil immediately engulfed the ship, with aviation gas on top of that. The aviation gas acted like a wick. Fanned by a light wind, the fire spread aft quickly. A few minutes later the fires reached the after magazine and caused yet another explosion to tear through the ship. The ship was abandoned and soon enveloped in flames over 100 ft (30 m) high. Fleet tugs were immediately brought in to try to extinguish the fire, but in spite of their efforts, at about 09:00 the ship slowly turned over and disappeared. Fifteen minutes later, the fire on the water was out and Ulithi anchorage was again quiet. It was determined the USS Mississinewa was sunk by a Kaiten manned torpedo. The ship was the first to be hit by these Japanese manned torpedoes. The ship sank with a loss of 63 hands as well as the Kaiten suicide pilot. Seaman First Class Darie Joseph Deveau was listed as missing in action, as his body was never recovered. He is remembered on the Walls of the Missing at the Manila American Cemetery in the Philippines. Manila American Cemetery is the largest of all American overseas cemeteries occupying over 150 acres on a prominent plateau, with a breathtaking view of the Manila skyline. Here rests more than 17000 American servicemen and women, most lost their lives in the Philippines and New Guinea in WWII, but over a dozen campaigns across the Pacific are represented there. On rectangular Trani limestone piers within the hemicycles, are inscribed the Tablets of the Missing containing 36 286 names. At the time of his death, his wife was living at 15 Marion Ave in Yonkers, in New York.
Darie Joseph Deveau
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