Home    Shipmates    Ship's Store    History    Photos    Links    Reunions and Newsletters    Stories

By Joe Carrillo
Submitted by Bob Whitt and Bill Kephart

This Poem is dedicated in memory of the late Captain Robert H. Close
Commanding officer serving on the USS Collett DD-730 during the Korean War


(Des. Ron. Nine)

                                    The night had turned to light of day
                                    As Des Ron Nine sped on its way

                                    With all Destroyers directly in line
                                    Collett soon met the deadly mine

                                    Collett was firing starboard side to
                                    The mines exploded and shrapnel flew

                                    The mines and treacherous narrow shoal
                                    Would not deter her from her goal

                                    To meet the enemy close at hand
                                    Was not an order but high command

                                    Rear Admiral Higgins soon gave his orders
                                    Destroyers  “ Prepare to repel all boarders”

                                    This order not given since the days of sail
                                    Was an omen of death soon to prevail

                                    The order was clear ahead lie the foe
                                    All ready and waiting on “Wolmi Do”

                                    Collett in the harbor five fathoms below
                                    Captain Close ordered all ahead slow

                                    As enemy gunners looked on with rancor
                                    Collett closed in and dropped the anchor

                                    The crews in destroyers of  Des Ron Nine
                                    Could see their lives were on the line

                                    Collett was now in bore sight range
                                    The die was cast and would not change

                                     The enemy fired with much regret
                                    A perfect target they wouldn’t forget

                                    Collett was hit and out of luck
                                    A new name was born “Sitting Duck”

                                    Collett now hit and listing to port
                                    Her duty was fighting and wouldn’t abort

                                    For almost an hour no end was in sight
                                    The enemy firing from left and to right

                                    While dragging her anchor withdrawing astern
                                    Collett kept on fighting with greater concern

                                    The battle was over for fighting Collett
                                    The counting of wounded her only regret

                                    The sound of battle I need not fear
                                    For only the echo rings in my ear

                                    Wars will come and wars will go
                                    I’ll always remember “Wolmi Do”

                                    The passage of time has taken its toll
                                    Collett is no longer on ocean patrol

                                    The end was near the sun had set
                                    You served us well USS Collett

                                    In parting Salute to your watery grave
                                    Your ghost will crest the highest wave


                                    Joe Carrillo  USN  G.M. 1/C
                                    USS Collett  (1949-1952)