Burials at Sea
Posted by Laurie Frost on May 29, 2010
I was looking for BP oil spill photos on the Navy’s Eye on the Fleet pages when I came across these public domain images of burials at sea. I don’t know how they might be of use to anyone, but the procedures intrigued me, and they seem appropriate viewing for Memorial Day weekend.
Burials can involve either casketed or cremated remains. Note the special apparatus used for funneling the cremated remains away from the ship and into the sea — I suppose it is to prevent an ocean wind from blowing them back onto the deck.
Number in brackets is the image’s ID for quick searching to download high resolution files. There are many more at the Eye on the Fleet site; searching “burial at sea” yields 287 images.
Honor guards stand at attention before removing the American flag and releasing the casket of one of 13 sailors and Marines interned in the Atlantic Ocean during a burial-at-sea ceremony aboard the amphibious dock landing ship USS Ashland (LSD 48) Feb. 23, 2008. U.S. Navy photos by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Mandy Hunsucker [080223-N-7987H-023, 080223-N-7987H-025, 080223-N-7987H-037]
Rifle salute on carrier USS Nimitz (CVN-68) during a burial-at-sea ceremony. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Peter Merrill [090725-N-2918M-143]
Urns containing the ashes of service members and their spouses await burial at sea aboard the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) June 9, 2009. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Torrey W. Lee [090609-N-3610L-073]
You can read about this ceremony here. The remains of 14 people were buried at sea from the deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) on Memorial Day, 2008. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Joshua Scott [080526-N-1635S-009]
A sailor picks up the urn containing the ashes of U.S. Navy Capt. and astronaut Walter M. (Wally) Schirra buried at sea from the USS Ronald Reagan on Feb. 11, 2008. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Kathleen Gorby [080211-N-4776G-175]
Burials at sea can be performed from the air or land as well. Cremated remains can be released from the air into the sea.
Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron Two One (HSC-21) conducted a burial at sea Jan. 4, 2006 off the coast of San Diego. U.S. Navy photo by Photographer’s Mate 2nd Class Scott Taylor [060104-N-9500T-051]
Here’s the story about this image [030830-N-3228G-005]:
Pearl Harbor, Hawaii (Aug. 30, 2003) — Cryptologic Technician Operator 3rd Class Evan Allen, assigned to the amphibious assault ship USS Peleliu (LHA 5) pours the cremated remains of his grandfather Darrell Allen, a Pearl Harbor survivor, over the side of the USS Utah Memorial during Peleliu’s brief port visit to Pearl Harbor. Darrell Allen was a Machinist Mate on the submarine USS Cachalot (SS 170), which was anchored at Berth 1, Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard on Dec. 7, 1941. The Cachalot was one of four U.S. subs in Pearl Harbor that day. U.S. Navy photo by Photographer’s Mate 1st Class William R. Goodwin.
While a single trumpet playing “Taps” is most common —
U.S. Navy photo by Photographer’s Mate 3rd Class Martin S. Fuentes. [030415-N-5555F-075]
— even bagpipes can be involved. The caption for the picture below reads: “Combat Systems Officer Cmdr. Mark Sanford of Warrington, Pa., practices his bagpipes during a no-fly day on the flight deck aboard aircraft carrier USS Enterprise (CVN 65).”
U.S. Navy photo by Photographer’s Mate Airman Alex J. Recalde [040615-N-5952R-005]
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