On Monday, June 8, 2009, exactly 42 years after the USS Liberty (GTR-5) was attacked, in international waters off the coast of Sinai by Israel, members of the USS Liberty Veterans Association were at the U.S. Navy Memorial, in downtown Washington, D.C. Their purpose was to present a model of the vessel to the institution for it to be maintained on permanent display. Accepting the USS Liberty model on behalf of the U.S. Navy Memorial was its CEO, Rear Admiral Edward K. "Tad" Walker (ret); and responding on behalf of the USS Liberty Veterans Association was Ernest A. Gallo, its President. Mr. Gallo is also Chairman of the Liberty Foundation.
After the dedication ceremony, I interviewed a USS Liberty survivor, Petty Officer, (Shipfitter 3rd), Americo "Rick" Aimetti. Hes a native of Long Island, NY, and he was only 19 years old when he served aboard the vessel. He shared some of what it was like to be on the USS Liberty on the afternoon of the attack and the effect that harrowing experience has had on him and many of his fellow crew members.
The "Liberty" was subjected, on June 8, 1967, during the Six-Day War, to an unprovoked assault by the Israeli Air Force and Navy for close to 75 minutes, with rockets, torpedoes, cannon fire, napalm and machine gun fire. Thirty-four crew members on the vessel were killed and 171 seriously wounded. For more background, see: http://www.gtr5.com/ and the web site for the USS Liberty Association, found here: http://www.usslibertyveterans.org/
See also: "Assault on the Liberty" by LCDR James Marquis Ennes, Jr. and "The Attack on the Liberty: The Untold Story of Israels Deadly 1967 Assault on a U.S. Spy Ship" by James Scott. The U.S. Navy Memorial is located at 701 Pennsylvania Ave., N.W. #123.
Tags: USS Liberty GTR-5 U.S. Navy Memorial, Dedication, Museum, Model Vessel, Six-Day War., Americo Rick Aimetti, Enest A. Gallo, William Hughes, USS Liberty Veterans Association, Rear Admiral Edward K. Tad Walker (ret)
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