Meet a Shipmate—
Al “Hook” Perella (Irex 1945–1946)

I enlisted in the Navy July 42. After boot training went to Sub school, then went to the R-14 in Key West for more training. I returned New London and was then sent to Portsmouth, NH to wait for the Cabrilla (SS288) to be co missioned, and continued training and all that stuff. Then, off to the war zone.

After making 6 patrol runs on the Cabrilla we headed for the USA for R&R and refit, and docked in CA in Nov. '44. In JAN '45 all from the Cabrilla, Bill Payne, Clyde Turner, and I were sent to Portsmouth for a new boat, which was the Irex (SS482). Her CO was Commander J. D. Crowley, from Spfld. MA, (also my hometown) who was CO on the Flier (SS250) when they hit a mine off the Philippines. 8 men survived the ordeal.

About half of the crew on the Irex at commissioning in May '45 had seen action, and after intensive training were ready for combat. The Irex left New London and spent time in Port Everglades for more training, then on to Panama. The war ended when we were on the west coast of Panama. The next few months were spent in Key West, Cuba, and Corpus Christi. During Nov. or Dec. we left for New London. In Jan '46 I left the Navy.

I got married in May, which was 56 years ago. Margie and I have a daughter and son, and 2 granddaughters. On the 5th of July 1951, when the Irex was a school boat, I went to sea on her for a day. The CO at the time was L. C. McCarty. I then became a true and loyal Snorkeler. As for reunions, I have been to a few. I never met many Irex shipmates. Ron Liles started the newsletters and, Wally, you took over. Thanks for keeping us all informed.

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