2007 USS Indianapolis Museum Gallery Ribbon Cutting and Survivor's Reunion

It took a collaborative effort between three distinct bodies to create a museum gallery today with a vision to grow into a more elaborate museum in the years ahead.  That gallery opened Saturday, July 7, during ceremonies inside the Indiana War Memorial, as part of the bi-annual USS Indianapolis Survivors Association reunion.

Months of meetings and effort between the members of the boards of the USS Indianapolis Museum, Inc., the Indiana War Memorials Commission and the Indiana War Memorials Foundation made the dedication of the USS Indianapolis gallery possible. USS Indianapolis Survivors Association members held a parade through the downtown area, stepping off from North and Pennsylvania Streets at 11:00 a.m. Following the parade a private luncheon was held for the survivors and their families inside the Indiana War Memorial.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held inside the War Memorial at 2:30 p.m. and survivors and their families were given private time to take in the gallery.

Lockheed PV2- Harpoon fly over during the USS Indianapolis Survivor's Parade in downtown Indianapolis. A Lockheed PV1-Ventura, piloted by Lt. Chuck Gwinn, first spotted the survivors on their fourth day in the water.

A visitor to the USS Indianapolis Gallery, located at the Indiana War Memorial.

Survivor Ed Harrell and Bill Gray, President of the USS Indianapolis Museum, Inc. Ed and Bill both served in the Marine Corps. Ed has written a book called Out of the Depths documenting his time in the water.

Peter Wren of the USS Bassett was part of the rescue operation. Mr. Wren has written several books on WWII.

Mary O'Donnell, wife of Survivor Jimmy O'Donnell, and their daughter Mary Hoffmeister at the Survivor's Banquet. Jimmy O'Donnell was rescued by the USS Bassett after 108 hours in the water.

Survivor Harold Eck with his wife Jenny and their daughter, Maria Eck Bullard. Mr. Eck participated in the battles of Iwo Jima, Okinawa and raids on the Japanese mainland.

Bill Waldorf spent several thousand hours building a model of the USS Indianapolis that he donated to the USS Indianapolis Museum. Survivor Donald McCall being escorted to the Memorial Ceremony on Sunday, July 8th, 2007. Mr. McCall spent most of his time alone in the water until he was picked up by the crew of the USS Bassett.

A twenty-one gun salute by Marines at the USS Indianapolis Memorial Ceremony. The Patriot Guard surround the memorial ceremony with American flags. They also participated in the Survivor's Parade and were at the Indiana War Memorial to welcome the survivors.

Earl Henry Jr. discusses his fathers art work with a reunion attendee. Earl Henry Sr. was the dentist on the USS Indianapolis and was lost at sea during the sinking.

Retired Indianapolis Firefighter, David Brunner along with Mike Shanahan of the Chicago Fire Department and Dennis Yohler of the Indianapolis Fire Department, volunteered for the Survivor's Luncheon at the Indiana War Memorial. The three of them helped serve the survivors then helped clean up after the event.

Survivors Paul Murphy and Jimmy O'Donnell participate in the laying of the wreath at the USS Indianapolis National Memorial. Mr. Murphy and Mr. O'Donnell were rescued by the USS Bassett.

The USS Indianapolis Memorial on July 8th, 2007 after the laying of the wreath by survivors.

Survivor Glenn Morgan prepares to play taps at the USS Indianapolis Memorial Ceremony. Mr. Morgan was rescued by the USS Ringness. The USS Ringness rescued 39 men.

Survivor Norval Mitchell and his wife Doris at the Survivor's Banquet. Mr. Mitchell was rescued by the crew of the USS Register.