John Korba

USS West Virginia

John Korba, CEM PA, born June 13, 1922, Binghamton, NY. He joined the USN Oct. 16, 1940, completed boot camp and reported to USS West Virginia (BB-48), Dec. 1, 1940, at Long Beach, CA.

Departed for Pearl Harbor and conducted fleet exercises throughout the year. They were moored outboard of the Tennessee on Dec. 7, 1941. When fire and rescue sounded, he headed for his station on the quarter deck and saw Japanese planes swarming overhead. They received several torpedo hits and sea water and fuel oil was entering the compartment. He doesn't remember how or when he was removed from the ship. When he came to, he was with some of his shipmates in an open building on Ford Island.
He volunteered for the USS Patterson (DD-392) where he spent the next two years; transferred to new construction and spent the rest of the war on destroyer types. Remained in the Navy and retired after 20 years of service.

As a civilian he was hired as a degaussing tech at the naval base and worked for another 17 years. Enjoying his leisure with his wife, Carin Bergman (his high school sweetheart); son, John; daughter, Claire; and grandchildren.

Reprinted with permission from Turner Publishing

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