Cribbage Hands Dealt by
Commanding Officer Dudley "Mush" Morton
To Executive Officer Richard O'Kane
Aboard USS Wahoo (SS-238)
Card games were one way the officers and men aboard a
submarine relaxed between watches. Cribbage was popular with
the crew of the Wahoo and in the ward room between CDR. Morton
and LCDR O'Kane. Playing the game was one way the two could
escape the tension of a war patrol.
It became an evening routine for the two to play after CDR. Morton
had written his night orders. A game which took place on 18
March 1943 resulted in CDR. Morton dealing his XO a prefect
hand of 29 points. As witnesses to the event, the officers present
in the ward room signed the cards in the winning hand.
Within hours of the perfect hand, CDR. Morton and his Wahoo
dealt Japan a double blow. Cargo ship Zogen Maru and transport
Kowa Maru were sent to the bottom by Wahoo's torpedoes.
This chart was brought to the ward room where CDR. Morton
mapped out the course for the rest of the day and into the evening.
After breakfast on 21 March, another session of cribbage began.
With CDR. Morton dealing again, and much to his chagrin, O'Kane
picked up a near perfect 28 point hand. Shortly after this game,
the Japanese merchant ship Nittsu maru was sighted and
dispatched with torpedoes from Wahoo's after torpedo room.
On this one patrol, CDR. Morton and Wahoo were officially
credited with a total of nine ships and nearly 20,000 tons sunk.
There is little wonder why the officers and men of the USS Wahoo
believed the phenomenal cribbage hands to be extremely lucky
BACK TO HOMEAuthor: Bryan MacKinnon,