content top

West Virgina crosses the International Date Line

Oct. 1, 1944
Kay Darling:
Today was quite a fun day for everyone. It was pretty rough for some of us but we all came out O. K.  Today we crossed the International Date Line (the 180 degree meridian) making it Oct. 2nd. Looks like we will have to work the same day over again later. It sure seems funny to hear a football game broadcast from the states on Saturday afternoon then hear it a few seconds later coming in on a different day.

Naval Radio Room

Well, Darling, it’s beginning to get quit warm. We still don’t know where we are goin.

All My love,

View larger map Read More

Pollywog to Shellback! Crossing the Equator on the WeeVee

Darling :
Today is the day we crossed the Equator and I am sure glad Iwill never have to go through that ceremony again. I can tell you the truth I can hardly sit down and that is no lie.

All “Pollywogs” were duly initiated into the ancient and sacred order of  “Shellbacks”.

The pitiful pollywogs had to suffer such things as having their hair cut by truly Unprofessional barbers; being forced through the belt line for about 70 yards; last but not least, forced to drink some liquid from a baby bottle that tasted somewhat like arsenic and limberger cheese.

The only consolation was that the officers and men alike, who were not Shellbacks, had to suffer the same treatment. It did my heart good to see officers with their hair chopped, walking along like a man who had just been kicked by a stud pony.

Honey, I remember when I said I would never have my hair cut short again, it  looks like I am a liar because my hair right now may be 1/2  inch long. They also made up a mixture of graphite and grease which they liked to smear all over your head and face and also your chest. Well I was only in the shower about half an hour. Everything is O.K. now except my hair.

I keep thinking what you would say if  you could see me now.
All my love to you

Click here to view the book which celebrates the crossing of the equator on the WeeVee.

View larger map Read More

“They Practiced Attacking Our Ship”

Kay Dearest:

Friday the 13th (ouch).

Weather is fine, calm water, weather about 100 (degrees).  Scuttlebut is that MCArthur, is on the Cruiser Nashville.

The scuttlebutt proved to be correct.

Listened to Tokyo Rose’s scuttlebut, she still claims we are doomed.  She dedicated the song “Good Bye Now” to our Task Force. How Nice.
Carriers had a few planes up today. They practiced attacking our ship. Boy! Do those planes travel.

TBF Avenger, the most common type of attack plane used during this time in the pacific.

Always my love.
Action Ahead!

Read More

Tokyo Rose’s Scuttlebut

My Darling:

Water is choppy, there is an overcast but no rain.

Typhoons can be Seen forming aft our beam, navigator is avoiding typhoons. We must not be in a hurry to get anywhere, avoiding a storm in a Battle Wagon.

Listened to Tokyo Rose’s scuttlebutt, reception poor due to rain. I wonder where Tokyo Rose gets her records she has the latest tunes by Glen Miller, Harry James etc.


Our scuttlebut now is we are going to Samar, Phillipines. I wonder???

The world “scuttlebutt” has been used a few times, and the word has an interesting source.  The scuttlebutt on a wooden sailing ship was the large cask where water was stored.  Men would often congregate around the ancient water cooler and trade gossip.  Therefore, “scuttlebutt” = “water cooler chat”.

Action Ahead!

Read More

Weather Bad

My Darling :

Weather bad. Squalls and more squalls.

Carriers and six destroyers left our Task Force, to go ahead and soften up our opposition. Good luck guys.

I guess I’ll never get seasick again.  The ship is taking quite a bit of water over the decks.

The WeeVee in rough waters

Read More

Ate Gedunks

Darling Kay:

Weather worse, a real tropical storm, spray over the entire superstructure, the ship is really rolling and pitching. Stayed below decks most of the day and ate gedunks. Pretty dull day. Played a few games of checkers.

The Gedunk Stand on the USS West Virginia

“Gedunk” is the snack bar room of the ship.  There were often vending machines in the gedunk, or other snack items.  A love of snacks seems to be quite common among the Rogers, even today.

Read More
content top