USS Hobson Continued
 LTJG Steward a Kingsbury USN 28, of 853 Sheridan Road, Wilmette, Illinois was in the Gunnery Office
when he heard a dull grinding sound and felt the Wasp vibrate and knew it was a collision.  He ran
immediately towards his Collision Station but hearing "Away Fire and Rescue Party"  ran to Motor Whale
Boat Number 2.   The crew was already manning the Boat, all lights were on, and the boat was lowered
within 2 minutes after the collision.  Searchlights were sweeping the area, life jackets rained down and rafts
were already in the water.  The rafts were pushed clear as the boat hit the water and the Sea Painter cast off.  
Eight or Ten survivors were visible hanging on life rafts or the lifelines held by the men manning the rail on
the port side.  The boat moved forward into the fuel oil, picking up four men from the raft.  The air was
heavy with the smell of the oil and the survivors, slippery to handle as they were lifted into the boat, stunned,
silent and nauseated from shock and immersion.  The oil blinded them and breathing was most difficult as
they slumped in the seats exhausted.  Floodlights lighted the dark water all alongside the Wasp, where most of
the survivors were.  As the Hobson men were being rapidly lifted from the water, a shout from the side
elevator "There's two of them aft".  The boat swung out immediately and picked up two men from a raft,
and a pilot from VF-l;  LtJG Kenneth C Bonine, 23, of 124 East Sixth Street, Jacksonville, Florida, who had
climbed down a ladder to help the men in the water.  One of the men repeatedly groaned "They'll never get
out - They'll never get out"  as he lay in the boat.  There were no shouts or screams from the quiet, almost
too quiet, cold, oil soaked bodies circling outside of the empty rafts and flotation gear. The boat answered
immediately to the call:  "There's two at the bow".  An exhausted man, unable to put a line around himself
was lifted aboard.  The boat was now very slippery with about two inches of oil and water in the bottom.  As
it lay there, dead in the water, Motor Whale Boat Number 2 was suddenly lifted by a strong swell and thrown
into the gaping hole in the bow of the Wasp.  Everyone ducked to avoid being crushed by the ragged steel
edges of the plating, then the boat slid out of its perilous position as the wave subsided.  With full power on,
the boat cleared the hull by three feet as the new swell lifted it again.  Once clear of the hull the MWB #2
was followed by flotation gear and barely made its way to the lifeboat pocket it had left 15 minutes earlier.  
Hoisted to the rail, the slippery survivors were snatched from the boat by firm, quick hands and wrapped in
blankets, while corpsmen wiped the blinded mens faces.  The last man rescued had a broken arm and was
lifted gently into a stretcher, laid on the gunwhale and carried quickly to the operating room.  Moments later
with blankets, more powerful lights and an extra first aid kit, the boat was lowered away again.  Passing the
stern,  MWB # 2 made a large circle on the starboard side where most of the boats were searching.  Many
lights from the boats and searchlights on the Wasp were sweeping the waves, stopping when anything was
sighted.  Returning to the port side, a thorough search was made to the stern and along the waters edge.  The
men at the rails were quiet, there were no more survivors in sight,  there was no debris, no wreckage, just a
large lighted area dotted with rafts and much flotation gear.  It was apparent to all, that few from the Hobson
would be lifted from the water after this time because none had had time to drift very far away from the
Wasp.  Going back again to the starboard side Ken Kingsbury and his crew searched far out from the Wasp,
circling and sweeping the sea with their powerful wet cell portable, flood lanterns. At 0100, Cold, drenched
and wrapped in the blankets meant for the non existent survivors, the crew was called my Motor Boat
Number One, commanded by a volunteer officer, CDR. Richard S Rogers, Commander Air Group One of
3538 Boone Park Ave, Jacksonville, Florida, and was told that the Wasp had left to recover aircraft; continue
searching.  At 0230 the crew followed again the blinking light of Motor Boat Number 1 and it took them in
tow.  The seas were very rough now and the first towline parted.  Another shorter towline held the boats as
they crashed together continually.  Only the lights of the destroyers were visible, and with the danger of
capsizing, they made their way to the side of the
U.S.S. Stribling.  The crew of MWB #2 punctured and
bruised from falls in the slippery boat, climbed up a cargo net to the deck of the destroyer.  After treatment
for exposure in sick bay they were fed hot coffee and soup.  The boat cut adrift was picked up by the Wasp
the next morning. While LtJG Kingsbury and his crew remained to be picked up by Wasp "Angel" the
following day.  The crew of Motor Whale Boat # 2 was as follows:  Boat Officer LtJG Kingsbury, Coswain
Charles T Painter, (BM3) of Sargeant Street Phoegus, Fir.,  Bowhook Joe Growski (SN) Box 121, Jer
W.Va.,  Sternhook Bernard H Lepara (SA) 131 Fracklyn St West, Read Pa.,  Corpsman Samual L Huffman
(HM3) 6214 Torrey Road, Flint Michigan.
Personal Account of Doctor Robert C McCorry Liet...(MC) USNR Butler, Penna. flight Surgeon.  I was
sitting in the stateroom talking with Lt. Francis D Barton of 19018 Bhawn St, Philadelphia, Pa.  I heard a
long, low rumbling noise.  Since we were conducting night flight operations, I thought maybe a plane had
crashed on deck.  With a look of apprehension on his face, Barton tumbled out of the sack and said,
"Collision"  I grabbed my flight jacket and ran to the flight deck.  Falling over many people since my eyes
were not yet dark adapted.  Shortly after reaching the flight deck, I heard the cry "Man Overboard,"  
immediately followed by "Three men overboard".  The search lights were turned on and it was obvious that
there were many men and much flotation gear, some from the destroyer, floating in the water.  Available
lines, rafts, and life vests were thrown over the side of the Wasp to those in the water.  Then I went down to
the Hangar Deck Level on the port side to aid in bringing survivors aboard.  Survivors were briefly examined
to determine whether immediate emergency treatment was indicated and then sent to the sick bay.
 About that time, after most of the survivors in the immediate vicinity of Wasp had been picked up, I
boarded Number 1 Motor Launch as the rescue party medical officer.  We proceeded to the oil slick and
rescue area to search for further survivors.  Using searchlights on the launch, many rafts and life jackets were
spotted and investigated.  One body was sighted floating just below the surface of the water and was brought
aboard with much difficulty due to the fuel oil covering everything.  Artificial respiration was immediately
begun while search for others continued.
Then we noticed a couple of destroyers coming into the area and since we were quite far from the Wasp, we
proceeded alongside one of them.  (The U.S.S. O'Hare).  They wanted to know how many survivors we had
aboard.  Since artificial respiration for one and one half hours produced no sigh of life, we replied "No
Survivors, One Body Aboard"  we requested a litter and were given orders (they said from the Admiral
Chester C Wood in
Stribling) to put the body aboard, which we did.  We were then instructed to search an
area within 500 to 1000 yards from the O'Hare and stand by for further instructions.  After searching
approximately two more hours, a fuel check revealed we had only enough fuel for one hours operation.  
Since it was estimated the USS Wasp was about seven miles away, we felt the need of closer contact with
the U.S.S. O'Hare, since we had no radio.  After proceeding in her direction for about twenty minutes
without getting any nearer, it was determined she was underway going away from us.  Then we made contact
with another small boat and told them we were low on fuel, and requested they follow us in the direction of
the Wasp.  By that time there were so many lights in all directions that we weren't too sure just where the
Wasp lay.  By then the stars disappeared, it became overcast, light rain began falling, and the seas became
quite rough.  We were really depressed by that.  The deck was slippery with oil and vomit (several occupants
of the boat had become seasick from the severe gyrations of the launch). From time to time we lost sight of
all other ships and boats in the area.  We were very cold, wet with spray and generally somewhat
apprehensive.  We wrapped ourselves in wool blankets to keep warm until it got so rough that we hung onto
each other to keep from falling overboard.  After five perilous hours, at daybreak, we arrived back at the
Wasp.  As we rounded the Wasp we could see at water level a long slash in the bow where we could see
through from one side to the other.
 Tired fatigued, exposed and ready for a hot cup of coffee we were finally hoisted aboard, almost out of fuel
and completely exhausted.