Preserving The Oral HistorIES of Combat Veterans


Ed Marriott | USS Maury (DD-401) - Navy

6:11   |   Ed Marriott had been in the Navy almost a year. His ship, the USS Maury, was one day out of Pearl Harbor on the fateful day of the attack. The next day, after seeing the unbelievable devastation, it was back out to sea searching for the enemy.

More From Ed Marriott

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Videos ( 9 )
  • Ed Marriott  |  WWII  |  USS Maury (DD-401)  |  4:56

    He was there at the Battle of the Coral Sea. It was mainly an air battle, says Ed Marriott, who was a gun pointer on a destroyer. His ship was an escort for the USS Enterprise and its job was to keep enemy planes away from the aircraft carrier.

  • Ed Marriott  |  WWII  |  USS Maury (DD-401)  |  4:39

    Ed Marriott volunteered for the Navy eleven months before the attack on Pearl Harbor. Once the war began in earnest, his ship, the USS Maury continued as an escort for the USS Enterprise and took part in several big Naval battles including the Battle of the Coral Sea.

  • Ed Marriott  |  WWII  |  USS Kalk (DD-611)  |  4:26

    After a year on a new destroyer protecting convoys, Ed Marriott was sent to a new type of Navy unit, the Beach Battalion. These sailors went ashore during amphibious invasions to manage the ship traffic and establish some order with medical and communications teams, among others.

  • Ed Marriott  |  WWII  |  6th Naval Beach Battalion  |  3:32

    Ed Marriott's role in the Beach Battalion was in hydrographics, which meant he had to assess water and beach conditions and give a green light to boats to come in. Before the D-Day invasion, he was training near Slapton Sands when a training exercise was attacked by German E-boats, resulting in over 700 deaths.

  • Ed Marriott  |  WWII  |  6th Naval Beach Battalion  |  4:46

    When you got to the beach, you had to seek cover behind a disabled vehicle or boat, wrecked by fire from up above on the bluff. Beach Battalion sailors, like Ed Marriott, had to dodge the fire to establish management over the traffic into shore and the men and stores once landed.

  • Ed Marriott  |  WWII  |  6th Naval Beach Battalion  |  4:18

    No one could do anything about the dead on the first day at Normandy. There was too much fire from above from 88's and machine guns. Eventually, they could be collected, as GI's made it up the bluff and took the fight off the sand. Ed Marriott was a sailor in the Beach Battalion, there to manage the boat traffic once he could get out of his foxhole.

  • Ed Marriott  |  WWII  |  6th Naval Beach Battalion  |  6:12

    Ed Marriott was hunkered down on the beach by a disabled vehicle. Close to him was his buddy, Amin Isbir, also taking cover. The next shell flipped the huge amtrac over and there went Amin, crushed by the wreckage. Eventually, the beach was brought under control, which meant that a floating dock could be assembled and the landing of equipment could accelerate.

  • Ed Marriott  |  WWII  |  6th Naval Beach Battalion  |  3:02

    Once the men of the Beach Battalion returned to England from Normandy, it was time to write letters to the mothers and wives of those who perished. Before his experience on the beach, Ed Marriott had spent two years on a destroyer, where he was far removed from the mayhem. Big difference with this new unit.

  • Ed Marriott  |  WWII  |  6th Naval Beach Battalion  |  6:23

    A member of the Navy's beach battalion, Ed Marriott had one more invasion to participate in after the madness that was Normandy. Around the world to Okinawa, which turned out to be very easy for him with no fire on the beach. His ship had already started back for Honolulu when the radio went nuts. Back at Okinawa, the kamikaze attacks had started.

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