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The United States Navy Memorial

Navy Memorial Honoring the Men & Women of the Sea Services



Ship Designation: 
Date Lost: 
Monday, January 29, 1945
Explosion at Laguna Beach
Anchored off Lunga Beach in the Solomons and loading depth charges in her holds, Serpens suddenly exploded in the process. 198 members of the ship’s crew perished in the accident along with 57 Army stevedores who were assisting in the loading process. There were 2 survivors from the explosion along with a shore party of 8 who were ashore at the time of the accident. ... No cause for the explosion which destroyed Serpens has ever been determined

Lost At Sea Log

Number of sailors in this log: 195

Name Service Branchsort ascending
Sea 2c Lawrence Creech USCG
Sea 2c Gilbert Camarlinghi USCG
Sea 1c Donald Donovan USCG
RT 3c Boyce Guthridge USCG
Sea 2c Milton Keller USCG
SK 3c Harold Mcguckin USCG
BM 2c Vernon Twait USCG
MM 1c James Thornburgh USCG
Sea 1c William Cowhey USCG
Sea 2c Mack Gibson USCG
SC 1c Frank Kadilak USCG
Cox William Odonnell USCG
Sea 2c Robert Degreve USCG
Sea 2c Michael Cammarata USCG
Sea 2c James Drago USCG
WT 2c Elmer Hagemeier USCG
Sea 1c Ralph Kiley USCG
CMM Paul Rudy USCG
Std 1c Eugene Ward USCG
WT 3c Samuel Villemont USCG


Prepared by CAPT R. O. Strange USN (Ret.)