Four Chaplains Day
Four chaplains were on board: a priest, a rabbi and two Protestant ministers. They distributed life jackets to the servicemen and then gave up their own jackets to save more lives. The chaplains went down with the ship, giving their lives for other servicemen. Their final words were prayers.
On February 7, 1954, President Dwight Eisenhower honored them with this remark:
- And we remember that, only a decade ago, aboard the transport Dorchester, four chaplains of four faiths together willingly sacrificed their lives so that four others might live.
- In the three centuries that separate the Pilgrims of the Mayflower from the chaplains of the Dorchester, America's freedom, her courage, her strength, and her progress have had their foundation in faith.
- Today as then, there is need for positive acts of renewed recognition that faith is our surest strength, our greatest resource.