THE BIRTH OF THE MSO

by Fred Scripture, Associate Editor of

THE SILENT DEFENDERS

 

One dark night in a lonely cove along the Pacific Coast a 180 ft. AM anchored to await the dawn.

Late in the evening a YMS fearing an approaching storm sought refuge in the same cove.  As she entered the cove she observed the anchored AM and asked to come alongside instead of anchoring alone.

Of course the AM, eager for the company of another "Sweeper", invited the YMS alongside.

As the evening progressed the two lonely ships became involved in a little romance.  As you might expect, from such an e4vent an offspring was produced.

The "offspring" resembled both the parents but also had some unique features of her own.  Her wooden hull was 172 feet long with a 33 ft. beam.  She was equipped with all the tools of her trade, "O" type gear, the latest version of mag tails, plus the latest state of the art power train and electronic navigation gear.

The happy Parents were very proud of their next generation.  The new child was virtually nonmagnetic, no ferrous metal could be found anywhere; even the engines were aluminum.

She was so demagnetized that a careless abandoned steel hacksaw could be detected by exact hull-line location when passing through a degaussing range.

The AM parent wanted the new child to be classified as Auxiliary Minesweeper but the YMS parent argued that would not be fair, she should be classified as a Yard Mine Sweeper or Motor Minesweeper.  After much deliberation by the parents they agreed on a more descriptive name, Mine Sweeper Ocean, nicknamed MSO for hull classification.

In searching for names for their new "babies", they decided to name them after Aunts and Uncles of the AM.  The YMS had no family names, only numbers and the parents wanted their babies to have names.

Of their numerous brood they named 25 relatives who served in the World War II generation:

ADROIT, CONFLICT, CONQUEST, DASH, DIRECT, DYNAMIC, EMBATTLE, ENGAGE, EXCEL, EXPLOIT, FIDELITY, FIRM, FORCE, IMPLICIT, INFLICT, LUCID, NIMBLE, NOTABLE, PINNACLE, PIVOT, PLEDGE, PRIME, SALUTE, SKILL AND SWERVE.

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