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USS Bray (DE-709)
Name: USS Bray
Namesake: Raymond Leon Bray
Ordered: 1942
Builder: Defoe Shipbuilding Company, Bay City, Michigan
Laid down: January 1944
Launched: 15 April 1944
Sponsored by: Mrs. Mattie M. Bray
Commissioned: 4 September 1944
Reclassified: APD-139, 16 July 1945
Decommissioned: 10 May 1946
Struck: 1 June 1960
Fate: Sunk as target, 27 March 1963
General characteristics
Class & type: Crosley-class high speed transport
Displacement: 1,450 long tons (1,473 t) light
1,673 long tons (1,700 t) standard
Length: 306 ft (93 m)
Beam: 37 ft (11 m)
Draft: 13 ft 8 in (4.17 m)
Propulsion: Turbo-electric drive, 12,000 hp (8.9 MW)
Speed: 24 knots (44 km/h; 28 mph)
Complement: 221
Armament: • 2 × single 5"/38 caliber guns
• 2 × twin 40 mm guns
• 10 × single 20 mm guns
• 3 × 21 in (533 mm) torpedo tubes
• 1 × Hedgehog anti-submarine mortar
• 8 × depth charge projectors
• 2 × depth charge tracks

USS Bray (DE-709) was a Rudderow-class destroyer escort of the United States Navy, named after Raymond Leon Bray, who was born in Greenville, Texas on 1 April 1918. He enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1940, and was killed in action at Gavutu, Solomon Islands, on 7 August 1942. Corporal Bray was posthumously awarded the Navy Cross for extraordinary heroism.

Construction and commissioning[edit | edit source]

Bray was launched on 15 April 1944 by the Defoe Shipbuilding Company in Bay City, Michigan, sponsored by Mrs. Mattie M. Bray, mother of Corporal Bray; and commissioned on 4 September 1944, with Commander J. A. Hetherington II, USNR, in command.

Service history[edit | edit source]

Bray was assigned to Escort Division 12, United States Atlantic Fleet, and during late 1944, participated in anti-submarine operations off Long Island, and conducted exercises with American submarines. Following repairs at the Boston Navy Yard as a result of a collision with the submarine Cuttlefish (SS-171) on 8 December, Bray reported to Norfolk, Virginia, early in 1945, and conducted training for prospective destroyer and destroyer escort crews. She later trained with submarine crews off New London, Connecticut, until mid-July 1945. During this period, she also participated in occasional anti-submarine duty along the East coast. On 19 March 1945 she steamed to the aid of the coastal minesweeper Heroic (AMc-84), saving her from sinking.

Between 15 July and 18 September 1945, Bray was at Charleston Navy Yard where she underwent conversion to a high speed transport. She was reclassified as a Crosley-class high speed transport, APD-139, on 16 July 1945. Bray later served as a training ship operating out of Miami, Florida. She arrived at Green Cove Springs, Florida, on 7 December 1945, and was assigned to the 16th Fleet. She was placed out of commission in reserve on 10 May 1946 and never returned to active service.

Disposal[edit | edit source]

Bray was stricken from the Naval Vessel Register on 1 June 1960 and sunk as a target on 27 March 1963.

References[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]

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