Ray Bright Photos

SN Ray Bright (1st Div, Coxswain) was on the Isbell from 1948-51 and served during the Korean campaign. He submitted these self-captioned photos:

“On the phone, on watch.”


“Out of uniform – No head gear!”


“Back of 2nd smoke stack.”


“Bow of ship… me on right… Vowell on left.”


Ray also wrote this poem while aboard the Isbell:


We the deck apes of the 69’er, Dizzy Izzy;
Care not if the other ships men are quizy.
We believe we do more than all of the rest;
Keeping the ship together, looking her best.
So just check our getting underway routine;
Now try find another ship that’s more keen.

Mac, getting underway sure’s a lot of work;
But every man is there, and without a shirk.
First rig-in the boom, take up the gangway;
Now do it with a zoom, we’re part underway.
First division forward, second division aft;
Be quick and smart, work fast with a laugh.

Single-up, single-up, run away with the lines;
Stand-by to cast off, forget girls and wines.
Upon the foc’sle, Chief Brower runs the show;
Fantail has Hardwick, he wouldn’t stay below.
Back to the boat davits, all youse extra men;
We must pick up both boats, and gripe ’em in.

1st div. on starboard, 2nd div. to port side;
Chop-chop ‘u sailors, Vowell says “look alive”.
Fair lead those falls, through snatch blocks;
Some man pass a stopper, make sure she locks.
Pull upon those guy lines, in she will swing;
Set her in the skids, shoe her with a fling.

Now return forward and aft, get on the ball;
Except two guys per boat, make up the falls.
Back aft your gear secured, head for below;
Forward two men by anchor, ready to let go.
Secure special detail, set watch underway;
So then begins another, deckape’s work day.


– Vowell was Boatswain Mate 3/c in charge of this detail.
– Chief Brower was in charge on the focsle.
– Hardwick was was in charge of the fantail….he was Chief but was busted back to Boatswain 2/c.
– Ray Bright was Coxswain to the motor whale boat, supply detail.

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