From the chapter on Sylvester Puccio, Gunners Mate-  the bombing of the USS WEST VIRGINIA  December 7, 1941.

 

……8 A.M. that morning, a Fire and Rescue crew was called out to respond to a fire and I walked up the hatchway and saw smoke over at the 1010 dock. When colors were sounded by the bugler I stepped out of the hatch but I wasn’t wearing a hat. When you go topside you must wear a hat or the master-at-arms will place you on report-that’s regulation. I did stand at attention but could not see the flag being raised.  Since I wasn’t wearing a hat, I couldn’t salute the colors. Thank God I wasn’t wearing a hat or I wouldn’t have seen an airplane flying low. Looking out of the corner of my eye I turned and saw the plane pass by the submarine base and was heading toward the ship. I thought it was an Army Air Force plane doing a mock raid. The plane dropped a torpedo and as it veed off, it let go with his machine guns to strafe. I then saw the rising sun on his wings…..