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William Halford



Fading light dims the sight,
And a star gems the sky,
    Gleaming bright.
From afar drawing nigh,    
    Falls the night.

Day is done, gone the sun,
From the lake, From the hills,
    From the sky.
All is well, safel
y rest,
    God is nigh.

Then good night, Peaceful night,
Till the light of the dawn
    Shineth bright,
God is near, do not fear,
  Friend, good night.

Mare Island Shipyard Cemetery

halford_william2_ca.jpg (102056 bytes)

Born:  August 18, 1841 at Gloucester, England

Entered Service in the US Navy from San Francisco, CA

Earned The Medal of Honor During Peace Time For heroism October 01, 1870 at Sandwich Islands

Died:  February 17, 1919 at the age of 77

The USS Saginaw was a transitional vessel, a paddle wheel steam sailing sloop. Launched in 1859 for anti-piracy patrols in China, she was later deployed to the Pacific Squadron during the Civil War. The Saginaw's last duty was to serve as the supply ship for a team of divers working to blast a channel through the reef at Midway Atoll. She wrecked at Kure on her return voyage, all of her crew and contractors making the transit to nearby Green Island the following day. A small boat was soon fitted out for the hazardous month-long voyage back to the main Hawaiian Islands. Tragically, four of its five volunteers died in the rough surf upon landing at Kauai. Coxswain William Halford was the only survivor of these five brave volunteers. The remaining castaways were rescued following 67 days on the remote island.



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