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James F. Jordan - Ens/Ltjg/LT - 1962-1965

Smile, you're on candid camera

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Email received from Capt. James F. Jordan USN(ret) who was an Ensign assigned to the Cecil at the time of the Russian Sub incident:


I had the privilege of being on board when we raised the sub. We got her at about 1930 on 29 October 62 as a small radar pip. LTJG John Hunter was the officer of the deck and I was JOOD, having been an Ensign all of 4 months. CIC had also been tracking it. We got permission to investigate but as soon as we headed toward it went sinker. About 10 min. later we got sonar contact and tracked her for the next 34 hours. On Halloween morning at 0555 she finally surfaced. Cecil was awarded the Adm. Wright award by the then CINCLANT Adm. Wright, it was a case of Black Jack Daniel's. I had the privilege of sampling it at the Destroyer ball in 1964.

It was quite a feat at the time, we had an SQS-4 sonar, not really the state of the art. Our sonar gang, CIC team, and bridge watch were top notch and we got the job done. Throughout the 34 hours our skipper, then Cdr. Charles P. Rozier, was the ultimate in professionalism and coolness. He could have started World War III with a mistake but had just the right balance of aggressive tracking without unduly threatening the subs skipper. I was kept secret for some time but finally released to the press the following June.

Jim Jordan



Photo of the Russian Submarine the Cecil encountered in 1962 on the way to serve as part of the Cuban Blockade

Go to Tom Beeson's Page for more about this incident from another shipmate on board the Cecil at the time.

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