USS Cooper

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USS Cooper, in New York before commissioning
USS Cooper, in New York before commissioning.
United States
Name: USS Cooper
Namesake: Elmer Glenn Cooper
Laid down: 30 August 1943
Launched: 9 February 1944
Sponsored by: Mrs. Elmer G. Cooper
Commissioned: 27 March 1944
General characteristics
Class and type: Allen M. Sumner-class destroyer
Displacement: 2,200 tons
Length: 376 ft 6 in (114.76 m)
Beam: 40 ft (12.2 m)
Draft: 15 ft 8 in (4.78 m)
  • 60,000 shp (45,000 kW);
  • 2 propellers
Speed: 34 knots (63 km/h; 39 mph)
Range: 6,500 nmi (12,000 km; 7,500 mi) at 15 kn (28 km/h; 17 mph)
Complement: 336

USS Cooper (DD-695), an Allen M. Sumner-class destroyer, is the only ship of the United States Navy to be named for Elmer Glenn Cooper, a naval aviator who died in a seaplane accident in 1938. Cooper was launched 9 February 1944 by Federal Shipbuilding and Drydock Company, Kearny, New Jersey; sponsored by Mrs. Elmer G. Cooper; and commissioned 27 March 1944, Commander J. W. Schmidt in command.

Operational History[edit]

Cooper cleared Boston, Massachusetts on 23 July 1944 for Pearl Harbor arriving 4 September. After operational training, she sailed 23 October for Ulithi, arriving 5 November, and put to sea at once to screen carriers in air attacks on Luzon, Ormoc Bay, and Manila Bay until 19 November.

After repairs at Ulithi, she entered San Pedro Bay, Philippines, 29 November and joined in patrols in Leyte Gulf until 2 December, when she sailed with the destroyers Allen M. Sumner and Moale to destroy shipping in Japanese-held Ormoc Bay. Here the ships engaged two small enemy destroyers and numerous small craft. At about 00:13 on 3 December, Cooper was torpedoed by the Japanese destroyer Take.[2]

Cooper in late 1944.

Reports state that she suffered an explosion on her starboard side, then it broke in two, and sank within a minute. The presence of enemy forces prevented rescue of survivors until about 14:00, when "Black Cat" airplanes were able to save 168 of Cooper's crew; 191 were lost.

In the Battle of Ormoc Bay, Kuwa was sunk and Take was damaged by the American destroyers. In addition to the loss of Cooper, Allen M. Sumner and Moale were both damaged.[1]

Cooper was awarded one battle star for World War II service.

In December 2017, Paul Allen and his crew aboard the research ship R/V Petrel, discovered the wreck of USS Cooper and confirmed her identity after cross-referencing the destroyer's armaments and sinking position with historical documents.[3]


A documentary TV film, USS Cooper: Return to Ormoc Bay, was produced by Bigfoot Entertainment and made its debut in mid-2006. It featured deep-sea diver Rob Lalumiere and survivors of the Cooper sinking.


  1. ^ a b Cressman, Robert (2000). "Chapter VI: 1944". The official chronology of the U.S. Navy in World War II. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 978-1-55750-149-3. OCLC 41977179. Retrieved 2007-12-03. 
  2. ^ Cooper was probably sunk by Kuwa according to this source:
  3. ^ "RV Petrel". Retrieved 2017-12-10. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 10°54′N 124°36′E / 10.900°N 124.600°E / 10.900; 124.600