Cumberland Goes To War
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Cumberland Goes To War is a community heritage project coordinated and promoted by Allegany County Tourism in partnership with the Canal Place Preservation and Development Authority, the City of Cumberland, Western Maryland Scenic Railroad and the Allegany County Chamber of Commerce. Funded in part by the Maryland Heritage Areas Authority, the Allegany County Commissioners and the City of Cumberland. More information about the project and/or the images in the archive can be obtained by emailing info@cumberlandgoestowar.com.


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Charles Shaffer Air
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[ Lt. Charles Robert Shaffer ]
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Untitled-85
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[ 29th Infantry ]
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[ Oliver Rice ]
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[ Robert D. Shaffer ]
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In memoriam
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Medalsmith 3rd Class Thomas J. Dunn
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Registered: August 2008
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Medalsmith 3rd Class Thomas J. Dunn
1944 – 1946
Served on destroyer U.S.S. Lamson – DD367


USS Lamson, a 1500-ton Mahan class destroyer built at Bath, Maine, was commissioned in October 1936. She went to the Pacific in June 1937 and served in that ocean for the rest of her career. Initially based at San Diego, California, Lamson was transferred to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, in October 1939 and spent the next two years operating out of that advanced fleet base. She was patrolling at sea on 7 December 1941, when Japan's surprise attack on Pearl Harbor opened the Pacific War.
In January 1942 Lamson steamed to the south Pacific to begin patrol and escort duties. Though these were her primary missions during 1942 and 1943, she also took part in other combat operations, among them an attack on Japanese picket boats in October 1942, the Battle of Tassafaronga at the end of November, and bombardment and other invasion support operations along the New Guinea shore from mid-1943 into early 1944.
Following a shipyard overhaul at Mare Island, California, Lamson returned to the combat zone in August 1944. Following patrol and escort service in the central Pacific, she joined the Seventh Fleet in late October and was soon occupied in escorting shipping to Leyte, in the Philippines, where U.S. and Japanese forces were engaged in heavy fighting. On 7 December 1944, exactly one year after Pearl Harbor was attacked while supporting landings at Ormoc Bay, Lamson was damaged by a kamikaze plane. The ship had to be abandoned and crew members spent hours in the water until they were picked up at by ATR Tug Rescue boats. Twenty-five of her crew lost their lives in this attack, but the ship was able to return to the U.S. for repairs and modifications.
When this work was completed, Lamson went to the central Pacific, where she conducted patrol and air-sea rescue work from May 1945 until the war's end. In early September she took part in the surrender of the Bonin Islands, then spent nearly two months supporting the occupation of Japan. The destroyer arrived back on the West Coast late in November 1945 and was generally inactive during the following months. She was then assigned to target duty in connection with the upcoming Operation "Crossroads" atomic bomb tests at Bikini, in the Marshall Islands. USS Lamson was sunk as a result of the "Able Day" detonation at the beginning of July 1946.
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