U.S.S. Vixen 

Peter Johnson
Fireman First Class, U.S. Navy

Born:   December 29, 1857 at Sumerland, England
Entered Service:   Pennsylvania
Date/Place of Action:   May 28, 1898 - At Sea
Unit:  U.S.S. Vixen
Presentation:  Presented on August 27, 1904 - G.O. 167
Date of Death:   Unknown
Buried at:  Unknown

George Mahoney
Fireman First Class, U.S. Navy

Born:   January 15, 1865 at Worcester, MA
Entered Service:    Pennsylvania
Date/Place of Action:  May 28, 1898 - At Sea
Unit:  U.S.S. Vixen
Presentation:
  Presented on August 27, 1904 - G.O. 167
Date of Death:  Unknown
Buried at:  Unknown

.

Sinking The Merrimac

For weeks the U.S. Navy searched for the Spanish squadron assigned to patrol the Caribbean waters in an near Cuba.  When at last the ships under Rear Admiral Pascual Cervera y Topete were located, they were at anchor inside the narrow harbor at Santiago.

A daring plan was devised to trap the enemy squadron.  That plot involved sailing the old collier Merrimac into the mouth of the harbor, where it would be scuttled by strategically placed explosive charges to block the entrance to the harbor and trap Cervera and his squadron.  

The plan was a dangerous one,  sailing the unreliable old vessel, rigged with explosive, directly under the enemy guns high above on the Morro Castle, and directly into Cervera's lair.  Seven volunteers under Lieutenant Richmond Hobson attempted this task in the early morning darkness of May 3rd. 

Their mission was largely unsuccessful and all eight men very subsequently captured, but their heroic efforts became legendary among friend and foe.  Upon taking the men prisoner, Admiral Cervera himself greeted them with one word..."Valiente".
.

Courtesy of www.HomeOfHeroes.com

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