Life Preserver, M-1926, US Navy, 1943, John Maguire, USS Kendrick, MTO
Genuine WWII US Navy M-1926 life preserver, of the type featuring three snap fasteners. Supplied by the US Navy, the M1926 life belt was issued to Army troops participating in Operation Overlord. The belt could be inflated using two CO2 cartridges, or manually via two valves -- the belt had two internal inflatable tubes.
In excellent overall condition, the present belt is dated June 1943 and retains its markings: contract number W-2789 and manufacturer's hallmark -- The General Tire & Rubber Co., Akron, Ohio. Initials JAM have been stenciled on the inner side of the belt. Handwritten inscriptions indicate that the latter belonged to Electrician's Mate J.A. Maguire, service number 6510172, who served aboard USS Kendrick (DD612).
John Anthony Maguire was born on September 7, 1923 and joined the US Navy on August 17, 1942. Discharged on October 18, 1945, he passed away on November 4, 1973 in his hometown, where he has been resting in peace ever since.
Launched in 1942, USS Kendrick was a Benson-class destroyer. Deployed in the Mediterranean, the ship was attacked and damaged by a German torpedo bomber Heinkel He 111 on September 2, 1943, yet managed to reach Oran, Algeria for repair. Subsequently, the ship participated in various convoy escorts and provided support fire for ground troops involved in the Italian campaign and on the occasion of the landings in Southern France. She was decommissioned in 1947.
Illustration documents shown above are only available in digital format.
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