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50 Years Later: The Legacy of the USS Thresher, Lost in 1963 with All Hands
U.S. Naval Institute ^ | April 4, 2013 | U.S. Naval Institute

Posted on 04/04/2013 10:38:25 AM PDT by Saint X

A child’s drawing of a lost submarine rests behind Plexiglas in a back corner of the National Museum of the Navy in Washington, D.C., seemingly out of place amid massive ship models and aircraft dangling from the ceiling.

“USS Thresher/ Bruce Harvey/ crayon,” reads its art-museum-style description. “The young son of Commander John Harvey, skipper of Thresher, drew the boat on the ocean floor after hearing of its loss. Bruce’s father and 128 other men died when the submarine sank off the New England coast.”

Thresher (SSN-593), at the time the Navy’s fastest and most powerful submarine, represented a leap forward in the Cold War fight against the Soviets. When she put to sea for the last time in April 1963, she represented the bleeding edge of undersea warfare.

(Excerpt) Read more at news.usni.org ...


TOPICS: History; Military/Veterans; Society
KEYWORDS: navy; submarine; thresher

1 posted on 04/04/2013 10:38:25 AM PDT by Saint X
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To: Saint X

There were three US submarines launched bow first; the USS Thresher, USS Scorpion and USS Albany. I’ll bet the crew of the Albany is jumpy to this day.


2 posted on 04/04/2013 10:43:21 AM PDT by Pan_Yan (I love it when spell check selects every single word in my post.)
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To: Saint X
I remember Thresher very clearly. It haunted me (as a third grader). I was interested in submarines and submarine warfare, having read several books on the subject by Robb White (obtained from the Scholastic Book Service, back when they published patriotic books).

I believe the Navy traced the problem to one or more bad silver-soldered joints in some seawater pipes; their thinking is that these had been weakened as a result of shock testing that had been done on Thresher shortly before her destruction with all hands.

I vividly remember the undersea image of one single plastic boot cover, which was - at the time - the only item from the boat that the Navy was able to find. Or so they said.

3 posted on 04/04/2013 10:46:24 AM PDT by Steely Tom (If the Constitution can be a living document, I guess a corporation can be a person.)
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To: Pan_Yan

Iced up Marotta valve from condensation icing up.


4 posted on 04/04/2013 10:46:50 AM PDT by rktman (BACKGROUND CHECKS? YOU FIRST MR. PRESIDENT!(not that we'd get the truth!))
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To: Saint X

Has anyone found the sub with an underwater camera/rover yet?


5 posted on 04/04/2013 10:48:16 AM PDT by US_MilitaryRules (Unnngh! To many PDS people!)
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To: Saint X

More USS Thresher info:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Thresher_(SSN-593)


6 posted on 04/04/2013 10:55:53 AM PDT by US Navy Vet (Go Packers! Go Rockies! Go Boston Bruins! See, I'm "Diverse"!)
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To: Steely Tom

Seawater leak caused a reactor scram. Condensation in the high pressure air froze the air lines preventing an emergency blow. At least that was the best guess. Lots of procedures changed after that incident.


7 posted on 04/04/2013 11:00:53 AM PDT by Pan_Yan (I love it when spell check selects every single word in my post.)
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To: US_MilitaryRules

Yes.


8 posted on 04/04/2013 11:05:41 AM PDT by Darksheare (Try my coffee, first one's free.....)
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To: Saint X

Ah, “journalists”....the kid “drew the boat on the ocean floor”. I had in my mind the kid sitting on the bottom of the ocean with a piece of paper and a crayon.

As for the Thresher, I became obsessed with this story as a kid. I couldn’t stop thinking about it.


9 posted on 04/04/2013 11:05:54 AM PDT by Terry Mross (This country will fail to exist in my lifetime. And I'm gettin' up there in age.)
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To: Terry Mross

Your mind pictured a kid sitting on the bottom of the ocean???


10 posted on 04/04/2013 11:23:17 AM PDT by stuartcr ("I have habits that are older than the people telling me they're bad for me.")
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To: Terry Mross

There are a lot of ships sunk off New England....in 1998, I almost had my boat sunk by a sub in Long Island Sound. (I was cruising... and about 1 mile from me I saw a sub surfacing. IIRC, I think it was the USS Hartford.)


11 posted on 04/04/2013 11:24:40 AM PDT by ExCTCitizen (Go RED SOX....The 101st year of ol' Fenway! Beat the Yanks)
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To: Saint X

My dad served on the USS Thresher but was transferred off before it was lost. It is not the only close call he had during his service.


12 posted on 04/04/2013 11:38:39 AM PDT by TheDon (Criminalizing self defense contributed to the Sandy Hook massacre.)
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To: Pan_Yan; Steely Tom

The loss of propulsion following the scram is what ultimately doomed the Thresher. Procedure at the time required a long process to restart the reactor, delaying restoration of propulsion. One of the first changes following the disaster was the implementation of a quick startup procedure, to get the screw turning again as rapidly as possible.

The water in the emergency blow lines resulted in the Sub-Safe system—strict controls on work on any ship’s system critical to the boats operation. IIRC, this was the genesis of the entire QA system in modern manufacturing.


13 posted on 04/04/2013 11:41:08 AM PDT by rottndog ('Live Free Or Die' Ain't just words on a bumber sticker...or a tagline.)
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To: TheDon

The Scorpion was supposedly sunk by the ruskies.


14 posted on 04/04/2013 11:41:41 AM PDT by Mmogamer (I refudiate the lamestream media, leftists and their prevaricutions.)
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To: All
Thresher video
15 posted on 04/04/2013 11:45:42 AM PDT by rottndog ('Live Free Or Die' Ain't just words on a bumber sticker...or a tagline.)
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To: rottndog
The loss of propulsion following the scram is what ultimately doomed the Thresher. Procedure at the time required a long process to restart the reactor, delaying restoration of propulsion. One of the first changes following the disaster was the implementation of a quick startup procedure, to get the screw turning again as rapidly as possible.

Lotta ways things can go wrong down there, and when they go wrong... they can really go wrong.

16 posted on 04/04/2013 11:49:02 AM PDT by Steely Tom (If the Constitution can be a living document, I guess a corporation can be a person.)
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To: rottndog
The water in the emergency blow lines resulted in the Sub-Safe system

... which means since I signed as QA for stuff that hasn't seen the light of day since commissioning they can still haul my butt in if a boat I was on sinks.

17 posted on 04/04/2013 11:50:51 AM PDT by Pan_Yan (I love it when spell check selects every single word in my post.)
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To: Saint X

THE SUBMARINER’S PRAYER

O Father, Hear our prayer to thee
For your humble servants
Beneath the sea

In the depths of oceans, as oft they stray
So far from night, so far from day
We would ask your guiding light to glow
To make their journey safe below

Please oft times grant them patient mind
Then ‘ere the darkness won’t them blind
They seek thy protection from the deep
Please grant them peace when ‘ere they sleep

Of their homes and loved ones far away
We ask you care for them each day
Until they surface once again
To drink the air and feel the rain

We ask your guiding hand to show
A safe progression sure and slow.
Dear Lord, please hear our prayer to thee,
For your humble servants
Beneath the sea.

Amen


18 posted on 04/04/2013 11:57:00 AM PDT by Brytani (Liberals - destroying America since 1776)
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To: Saint X
I remember delivering the Cleveland Press and the headline after they determined it was lost with all hands. I was 10 years old and my dad had just died and it frightened me terribly.

It was right up there with the JFK assassination and the 1966 Richard Speck murders of the Chicago nurses.

19 posted on 04/04/2013 12:12:09 PM PDT by Cyman
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To: Pan_Yan
I think the Navy redesigned their entire construction program after that incident, with a lot more emphasis on redundant systems and safety.

I want to say that after we lost another boat that they redesigned procedures for designing and handling of torpedoes too.

20 posted on 04/04/2013 1:22:29 PM PDT by Jimmy Valentine (DemocRATS - when they speak, they lie; when they are silent, they are stealing the American Dream)
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To: stuartcr

The article said he “drew the boat on the ocean floor”. Substitute the word “ocean” with “bedroom” and what do you visualize? As in “He drew the boat on the bedroom floor”.


21 posted on 04/04/2013 1:36:27 PM PDT by Terry Mross (This country will fail to exist in my lifetime. And I'm gettin' up there in age.)
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To: Terry Mross

???at least that would have made some sense to someone reading it, and been confusing...but not sitting on the ocean floor, that’s nonsensical.


22 posted on 04/04/2013 2:29:50 PM PDT by stuartcr ("I have habits that are older than the people telling me they're bad for me.")
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To: Jimmy Valentine

The Navy instituted the SUBSAFE program to ensure that weilding on or near the pressure hull did not affect the integrity of the material.


23 posted on 04/06/2013 6:11:15 AM PDT by Jimmy Valentine's brother (01-21-13, Obama declares war on The Constitution of the United States)
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To: US_MilitaryRules
5 posted on 4/4/2013 12:48:16 PM by US_MilitaryRules: “Has anyone found the sub with an underwater camera/rover yet?”

Yes.

In 1963, a deep-sea diving bathyscape, Trieste I and II, “recovered some remains of the ‘Thresher’ submarine which sank off Boston. The sub was first discovered and photographed by ‘Mizar,’ a naval research ship which towed an underwater camera platform.” Link: http://archive.rubicon-foundation.org/xmlui/bitstream/handle/123456789/6154/SPUMS_V7N3_9.pdf?sequence=1

Here are some photos of the search by Mizar:

http://www.history.navy.mil/photos/sh-usn/usnsh-t/ssn593-k.htm

24 posted on 04/09/2013 7:48:45 AM PDT by darrellmaurina
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