Stuff You Should Know
The SS Marcus Daly was a Liberty Ship built in Richmond, California by the Kaiser Shipyards and operated by the War Shipping Administration throughout World War II. The ship mainly operated between various ports in New Guinea, Admiralty Islands, Northern Australia, and the Philippines. While unloading cargo at Tacloban in the Philippines, the ship was targeted in several air attacks and it was credited with shooting down 3 Japanese bombers. After the event, in December 1944, the ship sailed with a 40-ship convoy towards Leyte. Getting spotted and attacked by Japanese aircraft, the ship shot down two of them but suffered heavy damage from a kamikaze bomber. Three crew members, as well as 200 troops aboard the ship, lost their lives but the ship managed to arrive and dock in Leyte the next day. The SS Antoine Saugrain, another Liberty Ship, was also a part of this convoy and sunk as a result of this attack. While anchored, the ship shot down another Japanese aircraft that subsequently crashed into it, killing one armed guard officer and wounding seven others, but the ship did not sink this time either. It sailed to San Francisco after repairs at Hollandia. The crew was later awarded the Merchant Marine Gallant Ship Citation Ribbon.