This is the actual ensign that flew on the mast of the USS DeHaven DD-727 during Typhoon Cobra, better known as Halsey's Typhoon in December of 1944 during World War II. Three ships and 750 men were lost at sea. The ensign was rescued by the Operations Officer, LTjg David Oppenheimer.
David recalls, "When it (the typhoon) finally subsided, we spent time looking for those men, repairing the damage to our ship, reforming the Task Group and low on the list, replacing the severely battered ensign that had been flying some three wind-whipped days"
"Coincidentally, my good friend, Lt. Jack Pineo, the navigator and I entered the Wardroom at the same time. He put the battered ensign on the Wardroom table and headed to his stateroom. I asked, "What are you going to do with the flag? I'd love to have it." He gave me a slow big smile and said, "Regulations says that I have to burn it. I'm going to burn it but I have to go to my room first."
"That was the last he saw of the flag and strangely, he never asked about it."
David is shown displaying the flag at the Bath Museum in Maine.
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USS DeHaven Sailors Association
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