Last modified on 22 August 2019, at 10:21

USS Indianapolis

USS Indianapolis

According to the web site of the Naval History and Heritage Command:

The loss of USS Indianapolis (CA-35) was a tragic moment following the completion of a secret mission that directly contributed to the end of World War II. After a successful high-speed run to deliver atomic bomb components to Tinian, the decorated Portland-class cruiser continued to Guam. Indianapolis was en route from Guam to Leyte when she was torpedoed and sunk by the Japanese submarine I-58 within the first hour of 30 July 1945.[1]

Of the 1,195 crewmen aboard the USS Indianapolis, which sank due to a torpedo attack, only 300 survived.[2]

Sinking of the USS Indianapolis and shark attacks

The sinking of the USS Indianapolis is considered to be the worst case of shark attacks in history.[3] Most of the shark-related causalities came from oceanic whitetips, which are one of the most aggressive types of sharks.[4]

The USS Indianapolis is considered to be the worst case of shark attacks in history.[5] Most of the shark-related causalities came from oceanic whitetips, which are one of the most aggressive types of sharks.[6]

Testimony of Edgar Harrell: Survivor of the USS Indianapolis sinking incident

See also: Edgar Harrell and There are no atheists on a sinking ship and There Are No Atheists In Foxholes

Edgar Harrell is one of the 317 survivors of the sinking of the USS Indianapolis. He was a member of the U.S. Marine Corps at the time of the ships sinking. He earned his sergeant stripes 73 years after the sinking of USS Indianapolis due to an honorary promotion.[7] As a survivor of the USS Indianapolis sinking, Mr. Harrell speaks extensively around the United States about his harrowing experience at sea.[8] He also co-authored the book Out of the Depths: An Unforgettable WWII Story of Survival, Courage, and the Sinking of the USS Indianapolis with his son David Harrell.

The website Sermon Central gives the following excerpt of a sermon:

NO ATHEISTS IN THE WATER

David Harrell wrote a book telling the story of his father, Edgar Harrell. Edgar was one of the 300 survivors of the sinking of the USS Indianapolis, the last US ship sunk by enemy contact in WW2. 600 of the 900 men who survived the ship's sinking were stranded in the water for five days - many with only a life vest - all facing thirst, hunger, injuries, dehydration and sharks. They all came face to face with fear and their own mortality.

Edgar testifies of those days alone in the ocean, 'Clearly there were no atheists in the water that day. Gone was that damnable attitude of pride that deceives men into thinking that there is no God...'[9]

Edgar Harrel also declared:

You see maybe a body on an eight foot swell. And all of the sudden that swell breaks and that body comes down and he he hits you and he leaves that residue on you. And you see that and say, "Is that going to be me tomorrow or yet today?". And see you look up. And may I say, "There is no such thing as atheists in foxholes . There were no atheists out there."

Everyone prayed. I can hear one of those sailors praying today, "God if you are out there. I don't want to die. I have a son back home that I have never seen. I want to live, but we have to have help." So we prayed and we prayed and we continued to pray.

So the lesson that I have learned is I know that there was a higher power looking over me or I wouldn't be here today. And there is not a single day that I don't thank my heavenly Father for sending that Plane #1.[10]

The Christian apologist Gary Habermas wrote: "Double-blind prayer experiments: where people pray for others with terminal illness. Habermas admitted that most such experiments have not worked, but the three that he knows of that have indeed worked were cases of orthodox-Christians praying for the sick."[11] See: Studies on prayer

Videos of Edgar Harrell, USS Indianapolis Survivor

USS Indianapolis National Memorial

USS Indianapolis National Memorial

References

  1. The Saga of a Ship and Its Crew, Naval History and Heritage Command
  2. Neuman, Scott. "Navy Admits To 70-Year Crew List Error In USS Indianapolis Disaster", NPR.org, 23 March 2018. (en) 
  3. The Worst Shark Attack in History, Smithsonian website
  4. The Worst Shark Attack in History, Smithsonian website
  5. The Worst Shark Attack in History, Smithsonian website
  6. The Worst Shark Attack in History, Smithsonian website
  7. Tennessee Marine earns his sergeant stripes 73 years after the sinking of USS Indianapolis
  8. 75: Edgar Harrell: A WWII Survivor’s Story of the Sinking of the USS Indianapolis
  9. No Atheists In The Water, Sermon Central
  10. Edgar Harrell, USS Indianapolis Survivor, YouTube video
  11. Christian Apologist: 10 Reasons for the Fall of Atheism by Gary Habermas