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On This Day 50 Years Ago in the Navy -- October 31, 1966

1966:   While serving as boat captain and patrol officer on board River Patrol Boat (PBR) 105 in Vietnam, Boatswains Mate 1st Class James E. Williams and his crew are taken under fire, facing a superior number of enemy vessels.  Williams leads his men to sink 65 enemy craft and inflict numerous casualties among the enemy.  He wa is awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions. USS James E. Williams (DDG 95) is named in his honor.

Posted on October 31, 2016

BMC Williams ran his patrol through the ambush, then turned around and ran through it again.  That’s what we were supposed to do.  Then Chief Williams set up a line of fire that effectively pinned a vastly superior force on station.  The Navy Special Warfare community and we river rats held a fund-raiser to make the launch of DDG 95 a gala affair.   Chief Williams spoke at the ship’s christening, and died short time later.

Ken Kalish