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Solace

The hospital ship Solace was moved to a position off the north-eastern corner of Ford Island in Pearl Harbor on 7 December, between two groups of destroyers. Lieutenant Lawrence Ruff (Ruff, Lawrence) of Nevada was aboard to attend mass when the attack began and, seeing Arizona going up in flames, immediately set off for his ship. Chief Pharmacist's Mate Joseph A. Cunningham put a scratch stretcher party into No.2 Motor Launch and Pay Clerk John Keefer got a similar detail into No.1 Motor Launch. Both boats made for the blazing Arizona and took off as many men as possible. As burning oil spread across the water they made repeated journeys to that ship and to West Virginia. Burn victims were injected with morphine and their foreheads marked "M" in lipstick. Additional nurses were brought out from civilian hospitals ashore. Electrician's Mate Irvin Thesman was brought aboard at 1500 after rescue from the capsized Oklahoma and was given "the first legal shot of booze I got in the Navy."

See also: Arizona; Ford Island; Nevada; Oklahoma; Pearl Harbor; Ruff, Lawrence E.; Tripler General Hospital; West Virginia

You can find out more about the layout of Pearl Harbor in the following Osprey book:

CAMPAIGN 62 Pearl Harbor 1941