1941 - 1945 USS SAN DIEGO CL-53 WWII

PO BOX 182142

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Eighty crew members of the San Diego gather for a photo being taken by a photographer located in a crane thirty feet above.


This monumental public artwork provides long overdue commemoration of the distinguished service of the cruiser USS San Diego and her crew, serving as a perpetual reminder of their selfless contribution to victory in World War II. The memorial is an original artwork designed by noted sculptors Eugene Daub and Louis Quaintance for the USS San Diego (CL 53) Memorial Association, which is donating it to the Port District for the benefit of the people of San Diego. The memorial's complimentary components serve to remember, inform, illustrate and inspire.

The monument's soaring 28-foot apex, which resembles a ship's bow, forms a distinctive landmark on the San Diego waterfront. Four adjoining walls of polished carnelian granite and composite terra cotta are arranged on a V-shaped footprint, which encompasses a magnificent artistic map of the Pacific Theater. The colored terrazzo map depicts the ocean areas and contiguous land masses of East Asia, Australia and the Pacific islands. Embedded brass and zinc strips mark the wartime track of the USS San Diego as well as the equator, latitude and longitude lines. Brass lettering identifies key geographical features, and five-pointed brass stars mark the engagements for which the ship earned its 18 battle stars in World War II.

A crew member and relatives, left while designers and sculptors Eugene Daub and Louis Quaintance  pose for a picture on the right.

The south side of the memorial's terra cotta wall features a dramatic bas-relief artwork by Eugene Daub and Louis Quaintance that depicts the San Diego in action at sea. The artist's life-size bronze sailor sculpture on the opposite side of this wall, overlooking the Pacific map, is the humanizing focal point of the memorial. The sailor represents all the crewmen who ' served on the San Diego and is emblematic as well of all sailors who served in World War II. He is shown in relaxed battle dress, perhaps after a major action or long hours on watch or at general quarters. Though appearing weary and exhausted, he remains undaunted and resolute.

Inscriptions on the inner panels contain historical details and a summary of the San Diego's accomplishments, including a list of major actions she participated in between 1942 and 1945, from Guadalcanal to Tokyo Bay. Campaigns for which battle stars were earned are so indicated, correlating to the brass stars on the map. The names of all the officers and men who served on the ship are engraved on two polished granite panels. Above these appears a simple inscription, an excerpt from Admiral Halsev's congratulatory message to his fleet after its pivotal victory in the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal: "You have written your names in the golden pages of history and won the underlying gratitude of your countrymen."


Admiral Leon Edney, U.S. Navy (Ret.)

Special guest, Admiral Leon Edney, Congressman Randy "Duke" Cunningham, Peter Q. Davis, Mayor Dick Murphy, and Congresswoman Susan Davis look on as guest speaker Vice Admiral Timothy W. LaFleur, Commander Naval surface Forces, reads a letter from the Secretary of the Navy declaring LPD-22 will be the 4th ship named after San Diego.

Admiral Edney was commissioned in the Navy as an Ensign in 1957, and he retired in 1992 after having served as NATO's Supreme Allied Commander and Commander in Chief of the United States Atlantic Command. Other positions Admiral Edney held include Chief of Naval Operations, Chief of Naval Personnel, Commander of Carrier Group One, Director for the Office of Program Appraisal for the Secretary of the Navy, Director of Aviation Plans and Requirements, Commanding Officer of the USS Constellation (CU 64), and Commander of Carrier Air Wing Two. He also served as a White House Fellow in 1970. His many honors and decorations include the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, Distinguished Service Medal with Gold Star, and Air Medal with Gold numeral 6.

Congressman Randy "Duke" Cunningham

Now in his seventh term in the U.S. House of Representatives, Congressman Cunningham serves on the House Appropriations Committee, the Labor, Health and Human Services Committee, the Education Appropriations Subcommittee, the Defense Committee and the Select Committee on Intelligence. A former Naval Aviator, Congressman Cunningham was one of the most highly decorated pilots in the Vietnam War. He was nominated for the Medal of Honor, received the Navy Cross, two Silver Stars, fifteen Air Medals, the Purple Heart and several other decorations. He was a fighter pilot trainer at the Navy Fighter Weapons School and is a former Commanding Officer of the elite Navy Adversary Squadron.

Congresswoman Susan Davis

Elected in 2000, Susan Davis represents the 53rd District in the U.S. House of Representatives where she serves on the House Armed Services Committee, the Education and the Workforce Committee, and the Veterans Affairs Committee. In Congress she has succeeded in obtaining increased funds for defense and homeland security, worked to restore free and reduced lunch programs for military families and fought for the largest military pay raise in decades. Prior to her election to Congress, Congresswoman Davis served three terms in the California State Assembly. She is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley, and earned a master's degree in social work from the University of North Carolina.

Mayor Dick Murphy

Former Superior Court Judge Dick Murphy became the 33rd Mayor of the City of San Diego in 2000. He has also served as an officer in the U.S. Army, as the San Diego Marketing Director for Bank of America, as an attorney at the law firm of Luce, Forward, Hamilton & Scripps, and as a member of the San Diego City Council where he chaired the Mission Trails Regional Park Task Force and the Metropolitan Transit Development Board. In 1985, he was appointed Municipal Court judge and was later elevated to Superior Court Judge. He. graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a degree in Economics from the University of Illinois, received his Master of Business Administration from Harvard University, and his law degree from Stanford University.

Peter Q. Davis

Peter Q. Davis has served on the Board of Port Commissioners since August 2002. In January 2004, he was appointed Chairman of the Board. Prior to joining the Port of San Diego, Chairman Davis served on the Centre City Development Corporation's Board of Directors for 17 years and held the position of Chairman for ten of those years. Under his leadership, San Diego has realized $3 billion in development. A banker for 36 years, Chairman Davis served as president and CEO of the state-chartered Bank of Commerce. Chairman Davis is a fourth-generation San Diegan and a graduate of California Western University.

Jerry Coleman

Celebrating his 32nd season as the official voice of the San Diego Padres, Jerry Coleman has a distinguished broadcasting career that includes stops with the Yankees and Angels. In 1980, he left broadcasting to become the Padres' manager for one season. Prior to his broadcasting career, Coleman played baseball with six World Series clubs in nine seasons with the New York Yankees. Coleman interrupted his baseball career twice to serve as a Marine pilot in World War 11 and later in the Korean War. His distinguished military record includes 120 missions and two Distinguished Flying Crosses, 13 Air Medals and three Navy Citations.



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