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In 1945 the USS. Indianapolis was torpedoed in the South Pacific. Nearly 900 men ended up in the water, but after four days fighting hypothermia, dehydration and sharks, only 317 crewmen survived. A talk with two of the survivors: PAUL MURPHY, Chairman of the Indianapolis Survivors Organization (www.ussindianapolis.org) , and HAROLD BRAY. Their story was told in the 1958 book Abandon Ship! The Saga of the USS. Indianapolis, the Navy's Greatest Sea Disaster by Richard Newcomb which has just been republished. The captain of the ship was court-martialed for failure to practice evasive maneuvers in enemy waters; but it's widely believed he scapegoated for the disaster. Last Fall, Congress passed legislation exonerating the captain, but the legislation did not clear the conviction from his record. The Survivors Organization is working to clear it.

Copyright 2001 Fresh Air