Monday, September 24, 2018

Pearl Harbor Survivor Ludwig Radil Dies in Nebraska

From the May 8, 2018, Omaha (Neb) World-Herald  "Navy veteran among last of Pearl Harbor survivors in Nebraska, dies at 98"

Ludwig "Lou" Radil was in the Navy for six years.  He was a yeoman on the USS California when the Japanese attacked and later he witnesses the nuclear testing after the war.

Joining the Navy in 1941, he arrived in Pearl Harbor in August and was the ship's librarian on the California. At the time of the attack he was setting up deck chairs for church services and remembered, "We got a torpedo hit, then another, and then a bomb hit.

"We started listing to one side.  We got word that the ship was sinking and might capsize.  So, the captain ordered a call to abandon ship.."

He jumped into the water and swam 200 yards to Ford Island, soaked with oil but uninjured.  The next day he helped remove bodies of the nearly 100 who died on his ship.

After the war he was assigned to the USS Cumberland Sound, a seaplane tender and was at Bikini Atoll in the spring of 1946 and observed the first of two post-war tests of nuclear weapons.

He was buried at Graceland Park Cemetery in South Omaha.


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