The Four Chaplains, also referred to as the “Immortal Chaplains” or the “Dorchester Chaplains”, were four World War II chaplains who died rescuing civilian and military personnel as the troop ship SS Dorchester sank on February 3, 1943. The Dorchester was a civilian liner converted for military service in World War II as a War Shipping Administration troop transport.
The ship left New York on 23-JAN 1943 en route to Greenland, carrying approximately 900 others, as part of a convoy of three ships escorted by Coast Guard Cutters; Tampa, Escanaba, and Comanche. During the early morning hours 3-FEB 1943 the vessel was torpedoed by the German submarine U-223 off Newfoundland in the North Atlantic. The chaplains helped the other soldiers board lifeboats and gave up their own life jackets when the supply ran out. The chaplains joined arms, said prayers, and sang hymns as they went down with the ship.
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