For years, Eugene Morgan didn’t talk much about his experiences aboard the USS Indianapolis.
The Seattle man served aboard the Portland-class cruiser during World War II including on July 30, 1945, when the ship came under attack from a Japanese submarine and sank in the Pacific Ocean near the Marianas Islands.
Morgan was one of 317 survivors among the crew of almost 1,200. Eventually, as the anti-war sentiment waned in the decades following the Vietnam War, he began to share his story.
Nearly a decade ago, he shared it with his grandson, Jason Witty of Puyallup.
Witty joined the Navy after graduating from Puyallup High School 11 years ago. Today he’s a machinist mate 1st class.
Morgan died of a heart attack in June at age 87. Among his last wishes was to be buried at sea near the spot of the Indianapolis’ sinking.
His grandson fulfilled that request earlier this month.